Supplement Censorship Undermines COVID Fight

New science says supplements can help with COVID-19, but the feds say you’re not allowed to learn about it. Action Alert!

Stunning new studies demonstrate how supplements can improve COVID-19 outcomes. This adds to existing research on a variety of natural compounds showing the plausibility of using supplements to prevent or treat COVID-19. Yet, as we’ve been saying for some time, federal rules prevent Americans from taking advantage of these beneficial products. Help us fight for reforms that allow the free flow of information about supplements.

Take quercetin, for example. Reviewers have noted that quercetin is one of the best-studied flavonoids with health-promoting effects such as antiviral, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, as well as being cardiovascular protective. Quercetin has been found to reduce the release of inflammatory cytokines which are associated with the most severe COVID cases. It has been shown to inhibit viral replication of HIV and is known to inhibit enzymes that are components of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Other studies have found that quercetin can block the entry of the SARS-CoV-2 virus into host cells. In an open-label study, COVID outpatients receiving quercetin supplements were significantly less likely to require hospitalization than those who did not receive quercetin supplements. Among patients who required hospitalization, stays were shorter if they received quercetin. Quercetin supplementation also reduced the need for oxygen therapy. Other studies have found positive effects for quercetin and COVID outcomes.

New clinical trials have also found benefits for arginine, an amino acid. A randomized, double-blinded prospective trial was conducted on arginine and COVID-19. The trial found that adding arginine supplementation to the regimen of patients with severe COVID-19 significantly reduced the length of time patients spent in the hospital and reduced the need for respiratory support.

There is also new information on zinc. A new study found that zinc supplementation might help stave off the symptoms of respiratory tract infections (like COVID, the common cold, the flu, and pneumonia) and cut illness duration.

What is the government doing with this information? A recently updated research review put together by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) called Dietary Supplements in the Time of COVID includes over 400 references, many of which speak to the benefits of these products for COVID outcomes. Yet NIH’s conclusion is “Data are insufficient to support recommendations for or against the use of [supplements] to prevent or treat COVID-19.” This position stubbornly sticks to the government line dictating that only drugs can claim to prevent or treat a disease, even when the science tells us that some supplements can, too.

Currently, the only FDA-approved therapy for COVID-19 other than the vaccines is remdesivir for patients who are sick enough to need hospitalization. One clinical trial on the drug found that remdesivir shortened hospital stays by five days. Another study found that remdesivir recipients had a shorter time to clinical improvement than the placebo group, but it was a median of five days versus a median of seven days. The government’s studyof remdesivir found the drug had an extremely modest benefit, with an 8% mortality rate for the study group on the drug versus an 11.6% mortality rate for the placebo group. But another recent study found that remdesivir treatment was not associated with improved survival but was associated with longer hospital stay. Remdesivir costs approximately $3,120 per patient.

So, according to the FDA, no supplements can be recommended for COVID-19—doctors can’t even talk about the benefits of supplements for COVID without risking sanction from the federal government—yet the FDA has approved a drug with modest (at best) results that have not been consistently confirmed in studies. Something is deeply wrong with this picture.

Part of the problem is that, to gain FDA approval and make disease claims, randomized controlled trials (RCTs) would need to be conducted on supplements, as is required for new-to-nature drugs. But these studies are incredibly expensive, costing millions of dollars. As a doctor reporting on the arginine trial mentioned above noted, “there’s not a lot of money to be made studying supplements.” Drug companies can afford these trials because drugs are patentable; most supplements, being natural, cannot be strongly patented, so the cost of conducting these trials cannot be recouped by supplement companies. Then the establishment, like NIH, claims that the absence of clinical trials on vitamins means we don’t really know whether they work.

It’s time to take this out of the government’s hands and to let consumers decide. We’ve been pushing for legislation that allows the free flow of information about dietary supplements by allowing supplements to cite reputable, peer-reviewed research about their benefits. This will help Americans to learn that there are more options for them to support their health outside of pharmaceutical drugs.

Action Alert! Write to Congress and tell them to support legislation that allows the free flow of information about supplements. Please send your message immediately.

https://www.votervoice.net/ANHUSA/campaigns/88646/respond

Source: https://anh-usa.org/supplement-censorship-undermines-covid-fight/

Related Self-help Health posts:

Here’s to a happier, healthier immune system!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional/your inner knowing before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

A Great Deal From iHerb!

Wow, this is a great deal from iHerb where you get this immunity-boosting bundle for $10!!

I was going to order some quercetin and vitamin C anyway, and then got the notice of this special, so it was perfect timing. These 4 supplements consistently come up in research articles about natural substances that are the “heavy hitters” in helping ward off or alleviate colds, the flu, a certain virus that begins w/ “c”, and more.

I just happened to read more on quercetin the other day that said:

Two recently published studies confirm quercetin is useful as an adjunct therapy in the early outpatient treatment of mild SARS-CoV-2 infection.

In one study, COVID patients who received quercetin in addition to analgesics and an antibiotic cleared the virus faster than those who only received analgesics and antibiotics, and a greater number of patients reported reduced symptoms. In the second study, daily quercetin supplementation for one month reduced the frequency and length of hospitalization, the need for non-invasive oxygen therapy, intensive care and deaths

Quercetin has antiviral, anti-blood clotting, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, all of which are important in the treatment of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Quercetin also inhibits binding of specific spike proteins to your ACE2 receptors, thereby blocking the virus’ ability to infect your cells. It’s also been shown to directly neutralize viral proteins that are critical in the replication of SARS‐CoV‐2.

FYI, the offer ends on 10/18 at 10 am PT, so you need to act quickly, if you want to take advantage of this. Shipping is free on orders of $20 or more and iHerb has a great Trials section, plus I think you get a discount on orders over $60. Use this link to take you to the special “immunity bundle.” There are so many wonderful products, it’s easy to find enough things to qualify for free shipping. I ordered the immunity bundle, plus some Artisana Organic Raw Coconut Oil, Andalou Naturals Argan Oil & Shea Shampoo from the Trials section, and Hurraw! Vanilla Bean Lip Balm, my all-time fave lip product. Can’t wait for my box of goodies to arrive!

Here’s to a happier, healthier immune system!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional/your inner knowing before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

Have You Had Your Daily Harvest Today?!

Have you heard about the new meal delivery service Daily Harvest?

I first gave Daily Harvest a try about 3 months ago and have continued to schedule deliveries on a semi-regular basis ever since. They have entrees, soups, smoothies and more for when I need to have something to eat in a hurry that’s highly nutritious to boot. Ordering from DH seems to be a good way to make sure my freezer is stocked with items that are quick to prepare and surprisingly healthy, especially in comparison to most of what’s available in the world of frozen food.

Why I like Daily Harvest and would recommend it to others…

It’s great to have frozen items that are super healthy, where 95% of the ingredients are organic, and include a wide array of fruits, veggies, herbs and superfoods combined in ways that are beyond the ordinary. Plus, I really appreciate that in the foods I’ve ordered that call for oil, they always use organic extra virgin olive oil. So many products these days rely on the cheaper and, from my research, less healthy canola, safflower or sunflower oils, which contain high amounts of omega-6s.

And all items are free of fillers or artificial anything, and don’t contain dairy or gluten, if those are things you’re trying to avoid. In fact, everything is fruit and/or plant-based and vegan, and there are a number of options that are also paleo-friendly. I don’t follow a specific type of diet, but I realize many people do, so this provides choices that are sometimes hard to find in the freezer section of a grocery store.

Most items are also usually high in fiber and low in calories, and quick and easy to prepare. Many require just a quick heat-up, whirl in the blender, or the flatbread pizzas (with crusts made of pureed veggies, cassava flour and other healthy things), take about 20 minutes in a toaster oven.

Flexibility in ordering…

Fortunately, DH gives you quite a bit of flexibility on how often you order and day of the week it’s delivered, and you can change the items in your box each time, if you want. I signed up for the weekly delivery, because I didn’t want to commit to the larger amount of items required for the monthly box, especially because I didn’t know if I’d actually like the food. My thought was I would at least give the service a try since they were having a special $20 off promotion, and then cancel after my second order, because I didn’t want to be locked into deliveries on a weekly basis.

BUT, I ended up liking the food and found out how easy it was to change my items and delay my deliveries to where I usually have one every 3 to 4 wks, so I was able to get what amounts to the monthly box without committing to ordering the larger amount of items. HA! And it’s just enough to get me a good stash of back-up food for the freezer without having to schedule a delivery for each week. Orders can always be more or less frequent, if I make the changes in time to my account on-line, and DH always sends an e-mail reminder that the cut-off for amending an order is coming up.

Interesting, innovative ingredients and recipes…

You can see a complete list of ingredients for each food item and read reviews by other customers to help you decide if it sounds like something you’d like. And the company is always adding new items to the menu choices, plus tweaking older recipes, based on customer feedback. They seem to be honestly interested in continually making everything better and better. After having a few deliveries and reordering what I did like, and trying something new in place of things that didn’t really turn me on, I have gotten to where I know I’m going to be pleased with what’s coming.

This last time I added something based on it being ranked as the customers’ #1 pick and it did not disappoint. In fact, I will probably order at least 2 in my next delivery. It’s the Beet+Wild Rice Harvest Bowl and has a combination of ingredients that may sound a little strange to some people (I know it did to me at first)… chioggia beets, wild rice, arugula, cauliflower and parsnip puree, fennel, coconut cream, dill and other herbs, plus camu camu powder. But don’t knock it until you’ve tried it!

And that’s one of the things I like best about the Daily Harvest choices; they combine a lot of different things that I normally wouldn’t eat that often, if at all. So it’s great for getting a wide variety of fruits, veggies and herbs into my diet without having to buy a bunch of different stuff at the grocery store, if I was to make the recipe at home.

Their Almond Mylk is super healthy and convenient…

I tried one of DH’s smoothies, but I really, really like my own recipe, plus often start with a whey/high protein base, so it’s just easier to stick with making my own. BUT, I usually use coconut milk and almond milk for the liquid part in mine and I like adding one of the Almond Mylk cubes from Daily Harvest to give it an even richer taste. Their Mylk is pure and simple, just ground almonds and Himalayan sea salt, so you don’t get any of the additives that are in a lot of brands, even those at the health food stores.

The package comes w/ 8 “concentrated” cubes and each is equal to 1/2 cup of almond milk when reconstituted with water, so I can add extra flavor without adding extra liquid to the smoothie, if I just pop a cube into the blender with my other ingredients. I also like the convenience of always having a back-up supply to the regular almond or oat milk I use on granola, oatmeal, etc. There have been times in the past when that’s the only thing I need from the grocery store, so now when that happens, I just rely on the Mylk cubes until I do my regular shopping.

Daily Harvest is the type of business I like supporting with my dollars…

Daily Harvest is not like a lot of businesses that are really more concerned with making some bucks than really providing the American people with truly healthy food options and being good stewards of the planet. DH uses environmentally-friendly/recyclable packaging, chooses ingredients that support organic and regenerative farming practices, and even include superfoods in many of their recipes. And, as it says on their site….

Most of us know the saying from doctors taking the Hippocratic oath. Unfortunately, no similar oath exists in the food industry. A century of damage to the system has taken its toll — on our food, our health, and Mother Earth herself. While we at Daily Harvest believe in a world well-fed… today, it isn’t. We have to actively work to undo the damage of the past while creating a new system that can nourish humanity and do no harm.

Sound idealistic? Well, maybe we are. We didn’t break the system, but our only future is built on something new. Something that shows regard for future generations (Re:Generation). You with us? We are on a mission to take care of food so food can take care of you.” 

I like spending my dollars at places that are consciously involved in creating a better world!

Personally, I think poor diet, depleted soil, and non-organic/pesticide-ridden foods are a big part of what has made this country so susceptible to the virus, and I think all holistic health practitioners would agree. Unfortunately, mainstream medicine, the media, and the talking heads from government and Big Pharma don’t ever mention how important eating truly healthy food is to creating a strong immune system, but then that’s a whole other conversation. 😦

Anyway, if you’re interested in giving Daily Harvest a try, now’s a good time, because you’ll get $35 off your first order by using this link to get started, AND I’ll get credit for having sent you. Win-win-win!

And, although everyone’s tastes vary, here’s some suggestions you might consider as to what to order:

In addition to the Beet+Wild Rice Harvest Bowl I mentioned earlier, check out the Sweet Potato+Wild Rice Hash, Brussels Sprouts+ Tahini, and Roasted Eggplant+Red Pepper Caponata Harvest Bowls, Sweet Potato+Miso Soup, Pear+Arugala+Pecan, Portobello+ Pesto, and Tomato+Cremini Flatbreads. And I love the purity and convenience of their Almond Mylk and knowing I always have some on hand to save me from having to make an unscheduled run to the store.

And I usually like to “accessorize” my food, including some of the items from Daily Harvest. For example, yesterday I had the Tomato+Cremini Flatbread, which is fine just as it is, but I decided to customize it with the pesto, Kalamata tapanade, and chopped sun-dried tomatoes I usually keep on hand. DELISH! Would probably have even added some crème fraîche, if I’d had some around, but then I’m one of these “the more the merrier” kind of gals when it comes to toppings on food. 🙂

p. s. Daily Harvest’s version of non-dairy ice cream is called Scoops and uses a coconut cream base. The Ooey Gooey Midnight Fudge is the only one so far that I’ve really liked, which is just a well, because I already have too many temptations around. The Salted Caramel Scoops was a “no” for me and the only disappointing thing I’ve ordered so far. But then I haven’t found a really healthy version of salted caramel ice cream anywhere. I think it’s one of those indulgences best enjoyed in its classic form. 🙂

Here’s to happy, healthy eating!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional/your inner knowing before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

Jin Shin Jyutsu to Relieve Fatigue, Restless Sleep, Allergies, Balance Your Energy and More

Boy, I sure wish I’d come across this particular Jin Shin Jyutsu article by Astrid from Flows For Life a few days ago! Recently I’ve had several middle of the night spells where I couldn’t get back to sleep, plus a sudden bout of extreme fatigue earlier this afternoon, so it would have really come in handy. I actually learned this routine several years ago when I was studying JSJ, but had forgotten about it. It’s so simple to do and helps with a number of things. AND with the world in its current state, it’s great to have something easy and quick as a way to help keep our energy balanced, so be sure and give it a try!

I remember the first time I really felt the power of this self help. It’s difficult to describe the kind of exhaustion I felt; I didn’t know what to do with myself. Unfortunately, I wasn’t at home where I could lie down either. I needed to come up with something to get me going again, and I had to do it fast!

A gem of a self help hold

When I placed my hands in the proper position, I immediately felt comforted. Forty minutes later, I was back to feeling myself again, only better. This self help hold really did beat my (temporary) fatigue!

Since then, I have used this hold to help with many projects.

If I wake up in the middle of night and can’t go back to sleep, I will get into this position and that’s the last I am aware of until morning. It’s like a lullaby that lulls you to sleep.

The self help exercise

To clear the right upper body and left lower body (shown):
Place the left hand on the right upper arm and place the right hand on the left inner thigh

To clear the left upper body and right lower body:
Place the right hand on the left upper arm and place the left hand on the right inner thigh

Use it to balance energy

You can also use this self help when there is too much energy (waking up at night) or not enough energy (finding it hard to get up).

Mary Burmeister says of this self help hold: “It is supremely powerful. Use with humility and awe.”

Use it to help so much

Use this Jin Shin Jyutsu self help hold if you have a tight chest, shortness of breath, allergies, hay fever, cough, heart discomforts, sudden fatigue, to clear congestion in the breast area…in short, this is what Mary Burmeister, who helped introduce JSJ to the US, calls ‘the most important self help.’

Furthermore, it is said that Mary never really preferred any one hold above another, but she did call this one ‘a little gem.’

Video of self help hold to beat fatigue

SOURCE: https://www.flowsforlife.com/self-help-hold-to-beat-fatigue-and-more/

Also check out the archives for a number of other Self-help Health posts featuring more useful Jin Shin Jyutsu routines, including this initial post: Jin Shin Jyutsu: One of My Favorite DIY Health Aids

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional/your inner knowing before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

Free 8-part Docu-series on Gardening + DIY Fertilizers + Cute Video + Misleading Food Label

Growing a garden can be a fun, rewarding and health-promoting experience, and after this past year it seems like an even better idea and wiser decision than ever before. I noticed that a number of people started vegetable gardens in their yards last year, so at least that’s one good thing that the whole pandemic situation has spawned. I’ve never had room to do much planting where I’ve lived, but have enjoyed volunteering in a community garden nearby for a number of years and wouldn’t trade the experience, or access to fresh fruits, vegetables, herbs and flowers, for the world.

Spending time with the plants that nourish you feels like getting a warm hug from Mother Nature, and getting some help from an expert grower can help ensure that growing your own food right now adds joy—and not stress—to this already stressful time

That’s why I’m delighted to tell you that Stacey Murphy just released a brand-new, 8-part docu-series, the Joyful Gardener Virtual Event, airing February 15th–22nd, to help you overcome any obstacles standing in the way of growing an abundance of fresh vegetables and herbs for your dinner table. She has spent years providing mentorship to thousands of people of all ages, all nourishing their loved ones with homegrown, organic food, and she wants to help you do the same.

Here’s what the free series includes:

Episode 1: Airs on Feb 15
10am PT / 1pm ET 

Making the Most of Your Local Climate
  • Uncover what makes your site unique so you can partner WITH nature for easier yields
  • Use 3 key temperatures to plan your entire season
  • Save precious time and energy getting started right
  • Discover how to create microclimates to extend your growing season

Episode 2: Airs on Feb 16 
10am PT / 1pm ET

Healthy Plants Start with Healthy SOIL!
  • Transform your “dirt” into nutrient-rich SOIL 
  • Demystify what makes soil healthy
  • Three basic techniques to ensure long term fertility
  • Choose a garden style that’s right for you

Episode 3: Airs Feb 17
10am PT / 1pm ET

Making Compost & Compost Teas
  • Choosing a compost system that suits your lifestyle
  • Discover how to fix wet, dry and smelly compost piles as well as speed up the composting process
  • Brewing compost teas and applying biochar as your first line of defense against pests and diseases

Episode 4: Airs Feb 18 
10am PT / 1pm ET

Small Plot Growing & Packing In Plants
  • Seeding and transplanting densely, use every last inch of your growing space efficiently
  • Why companion planting, crop rotations and succession planting are so complicated and what to do instead
  • Simplifying the seed starting process for success every time

Episode 5: Airs Feb 19 
10am PT / 1pm ET

Fitting Gardening into Your Lifestyle
  • Simple ways to master garden efficiency and eliminate unnecessary work for MORE GARDEN JOY.
  • Discover how to move your body safely for rapid vegetable cultivation and harvest.
  • Walk step-by-step through a garden system that can cut your garden time in half… if you want (it IS fun after all!)

Episode 6: Airs Feb 20 
10am PT / 1pm ET

Simplifying Irrigation Systems
  • 3 Simple water systems: choose the one that works for your lifestyle
  • Irrigation system essentials for automatic watering
  • #1 Gadget to finally know if your soil is too wet or too dry.

Episode 7: Airs Feb 21 
10am PT / 1pm ET
 

Harvesting & Pruning to Improve Yields
  • Discover simple pruning tips to promote plant growth and increase your harvest
  • Know when your harvest is perfectly ripe so you don’t waste food
  • Picking for peak flavor… what no one tells you about harvesting.

Episode 8: Airs Feb 22 
10am PT / 1pm ET

Pests, Diseases & Weeds: Show them who’s the boss!
  • The #1 investment you can make to avoid pests, diseases and weeds
  • How to show pests, diseases and weeds they are no longer welcome
  • The best strategy to weed just ONCE each growing season
  • Which weeds are really a threat in your garden? Only a couple…

You can find out more and sign-up here. In addition, here are links to the free e-Guides Your First Step to Grow Organic Vegetables & Herbs and How to DOUBLE Your Vegetable Harvest in Half the Time.

And to add some fun to the idea of starting a garden, check out this video on Facebook about a man who had an interesting reason for increasing the size of his garden multiple times. It’s so well done and entertaining….I’ve already watched it several times.

And while we’re in gardening mode, go here for the GrowNetwork’s blog post about 15 simple homemade, inexpensive fertilizers (note: using banana peels is one of them, and I’ve read that they are not only good for rose bushes, which is mentioned in the post, but also orchids, if you soak them and then use the water on the plants.

Also, if you are an animal lover, please take a minute to read this quick article from the ASPCA about how a new misleading food labelling scheme known as One Health Certified (OHC) is exploiting consumers’ concern about animal welfare. The name may sound good (unfortunately companies/organizations/advertisers are great at this!), but there’s no substance behind it, so unaware shoppers could think they’re making a healthy choice for themselves and a humane choice for animals without that really being the case at all.

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional/your inner knowing before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

A Fan of Sparkling Water Or Starkey Spring Water? Be Sure & Read This!

This is the second article I’ve come across recently about the contaminates in sparkling water, and they both mention Topo Chico, which I’d never heard of until a few months ago, as the biggest “offender.”

Here’s Food Babe Vani Hari’s take on things and which brands to be wary of….

Sparkling Water Contaminated With Chemicals Linked To Eczema, Immune Suppression, Cancer, and Birth Defects

By Food Babe

When you look at the ingredients on most sparkling water, like Perrier or Topo Chico, the ingredient list is pretty simple. It’s just carbonated water. So what could possibly be unhealthy about that?

A year and half ago, I found Topo Chico and it was the best thing ever. There’s was something that I loved about the bubbles way more than any other sparkling water I had tried, it was downright addictive! I was drinking one or two bottles every night after my daughter would go to bed, it was my “night cap”… and around the same time, I started developing pesky eczema around my eyes.

I didn’t think they were related at all, until I went on a massive elimination diet to try to figure out what it was…

I eliminated a lot and tried everything, and never suspected Topo Chico, until I had exhausted all my options.

I talked to my integrative doctor about it, my dermatologist, and even went to my acupuncturist and asked him, do you think my eczema could be related to sparkling water? He was dumbfounded – and said, no I’ve never heard of that. 

I told him something just isn’t right about this and so I stopped Topo Chico cold turkey for a while, and long and behold, my eczema cleared up.

But I still on occasion would drink it here and there.. because I wasn’t quite sure. 

Until now. Fast forward to late 2020. 

Consumer Reports came out with a new report about sparkling water that left me stunned that several of the doctors I follow online (like Dr. Christian Gonzalez and Dr. Ana Marie Temple) started to share. 

They tested 45 brands of bottled water (including 12 sparkling waters) and found “PFAS” chemicals in several of them – including the Topo Chico I was personally buying!

Consumer Reports found the most PFAS in Topo Chico. 

They also found levels over the 1 ppt recommended limit in other popular sparkling waters, like Polar, Bubly, Poland Spring, Canada Dry, LaCroix, and Perrier. To make sure they got reliable results, they independently tested 2-4 unopened samples of each variety, which were blind-coded to preserve their identities.

Here are the worst offenders:

  • Topo Chico (now owned by Coca-Cola) (9.76 ppt)
  • Polar Natural Seltzer Water (6.41 ppt)
  • Bubly Blackberry Sparkling Water (2.24 ppt)
  • Poland Spring Zesty Lime Sparkling Water (1.66 ppt)
  • Canada Dry Lemon Lime Sparkling Seltzer Water (1.24 ppt)
  • LaCroix Natural Sparkling Water (1.16 ppt)
  • Perrier Natural Sparkling Mineral Water (1.1 ppt)

What are PFAS chemicals contaminating our water and how do they harm our health?

PFAS stands for a group of over 5,000 toxic fluorinated chemicals that have been used in manufacturing by big corporations (and by governments) for decades. These have now contaminated our environment and drinking water.

Exposure to PFAS are linked to all kinds of tragic health issues:

  • Suppressed Immune System (2)
  • Testicular Cancer (3)
  • Liver Tumors (4)
  • Thyroid Hormone Disruption (12)
  • Delayed Mammary Gland Development (5)
  • Decreased Vaccine Antibody Response (6)
  • Increased Cholesterol Levels (7)(8)
  • Atopic Dermatitis (15(Ahhhh – this was why I had ECZEMA!!!!)

PFAS chemicals stick around forever…

For decades, the chemical company DuPont used “PFOA” (perfluorooctanoic acid) to make non-stick Teflon and 3M used “PFOS” (perfluorooctanesulfonic acid) to make Scotchgard and firefighting foam. These chemicals escaped from their factories, poisoning our drinking water. Even though companies no longer use these two substances, we are still paying the price.

PFAS substances are persistent – and don’t just disappear. They stick around in our environment and in our bodies when we consume them. That is why they are called “Forever Chemicals”.

You’ll now find PFAS in all major water supplies in the U.S., but some areas are worse than others. (9)

PFAS are not regulated by the government. It’s a free for all. 

PFAS chemicals are found in all kinds of products – like nonstick pans, food packaging, cleaning products, carpets, clothing, and more. 

Instead of creating strict limits, the EPA issued “voluntary” guidance that allows 70ppt (parts per trillion) of two of the most dangerous PFAS chemicals (PFOS and PFOA) in drinking water. 

This is WAY TOO MUCH according to many natural health experts. The consumer advocacy group, Environmental Working Group, says the limit should be 1ppt. (10)

And, other advocacy groups like the NRDC say that 1ppt is even too high! (11)

The FDA has no regulations either, so if PFAS chemicals end up in bottled water no one will be held accountable. The FDA can’t even act until after the EPA sets a standard for drinking water, and it’s anyone’s guess how long that will take. 

This is what makes the testing done by Consumer Reports so concerning. 

Most of the non-carbonated bottled waters they tested had low levels of PFAS, except for two:

  • Tourmaline Spring Sacred Living Water (4.64 ppt.)
  • Deer Park Natural Spring Water (1.21 ppt)

What about heavy metals in bottled water?

Consumer Reports only found heavy metals in one brand of water: Starkey Spring Water, which is owned by Whole Foods. (13) It contained arsenic (a known carcinogen) nearly at 10 ppb, which is 3 times what Consumer Reports advises as safe: 3 ppb.

James Dickerson, Ph.D., chief scientific officer at Consumer Reports says a single bottle won’t harm you, “But regular consumption of even small amounts of the heavy metal over extended periods increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, certain cancers, and lower IQ scores in children, and poses other health issues as well.” (13)

The least contaminated brands…

The sparkling waters with the least amount of PFAS detected included San Pellegrino Natural Sparkling Mineral Water (0.31) and Spindrift Raspberry Lime Sparkling Water (0.19 ppt). Although I don’t like Spindrift, since it’s in an aluminum can.

As always, I highly recommend choosing bottled water that is packaged in glass, to avoid chemicals that are used in plastics and cans from leaching into your water. 

One of my favorite bottled water brands, Mountain Valley Spring Water in the green glass bottles wasn’t tested by Consumer Reports. However, the water quality report on their website shows it is tested for Arsenic, PFOA, PFOS, and other PFAS substances, and none were detected in their water. (14)

Make sure you spread the word about this very important investigation!

Since our governmental agencies are doing absolutely nothing about PFAS in our water, I’m so thankful for advocacy groups like Consumer Reports who are doing the work in testing products for harmful substances and raising awareness. 

Please share this post to warn your friends about sparkling water brands contaminated with health-wrecking chemicals. 

And, stop buying bottled water from brands that are allowing these harmful chemicals in their water. They won’t change until they get enough public pressure to do so, and their bottom line is affected. We can make a difference together.

Source: https://foodbabe.com/sparkling-water-contaminated-with-chemicals-linked-to-eczema-immune-suppression-cancer-and-birth-defects/

More on PFAs here from the Environmental Working Group, and you can sign up to get their free guide on avoiding PFAs here. In reading over the guide I was shocked by some of the places PFAs are showing up….in jackets from North Face, Patagonia, Adidas, and Columbia, shoes from Nike, Puma and Adidas, and even such things as Oral-B Glide floss! And of course you need to watch out for coatings on carpet and microwave popcorn bags and fast food wrappers, and brands such as Teflon, Scotchgard, Polartec, and Gore-Tex. And this is just the tip of the iceberg.

For more on plastics in bottled water, read this: https://www.sciencenewsforstudents.org/article/microplastic-taints-most-bottled-water

Related Self-help Health post: Update on bottled water & plastic containers

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to give Self-help Health a follow so you don’t miss out on any future posts. Also check out the To Your Health page at my website Evolution Made Easier and my other blog for more helpful information, tips, tools and resources.

Update On Bottled Water & Plastic Containers

Here’s a scary update on the bottled water and plastics situation. It seems to be even worse than what has been reported in the news previously…..

860_bottled_water_microplastics

BOTTLED WATER FOUND TO CONTAIN OVER 24,000 CHEMICALS, INCLUDING ENDOCRINE DISRUPTORS

Widespread consumer demand for plastic products that are free of the hormone-disrupting chemical bisphenol-A (BPA) has led to some significant positive changes in the way that food, beverage and water containers are manufactured. But a new study out of Germany has found that thousands of other potentially harmful chemicals are still leeching from plastic products into food and beverages, including an endocrine-disrupting chemical (EDC) known as di(2-ethylhexyl) fumarate, or DEHF, that is completely unregulated.

Martin Wagner and his colleague, Jorg Oehlmann, from the Goethe University Frankfurt, in conjunction with a team of researchers from the German Federal Institute of Hydrology, learned this after conducting tests on 18 different bottled water products to look for the presence of EDCs. Using an advanced combination of bioassay work and high-resolution mass spectrometry, the team identified some 24,520 different chemicals present in the tested water.

But of major concern, and the apparent underpinning of the study’s findings, was DEHF, a plasticizer chemical that is used to make plastic bottles more flexible. According to reports, DEHF was clearly identified in the tested water as the most consistent and obvious culprit causing anti-estrogenic activity. Despite trace amounts of more than 24,000 other potentially damaging chemicals, DEHF stood out as the only possible EDC capable of inducing this particular observed activity, a highly concerning observation.

The study’s published abstract explains that 13 of the 18 bottled water products tested exhibited “significant” anti-estrogenic activity, while 16 of the 18 samples were found to inhibit the body’s androgen receptors by an astounding 90 percent. Additionally, the other 24,520 chemical traces besides DEHF were also identified as exhibiting antagonistic activity, which means that they, too, are detrimental to the body’s hormonal system.

Many thousands of endocrine-disrupting chemicals used in plastic production prove material unsafe

But DEHF is apparently not alone in causing significant damage to the endocrine system, as the team was unable to identify this chemical as being specifically anti-androgenic. What this suggests is that there is some other chemical, or chemical combination, being leeched into bottled water that is interfering with the body’s chemical signaling system, which is, of course, responsible for hormone production and use within the body.

“We confirmed the identity and biological activity of DEHF and additional isomers of dioctyl fumarate and maleate using authentic standards,” report the researchers. “Since DEHF is anti-estrogenic, but not anti-androgenic, we conclude that additional, yet unidentified EDCs must contribute to the antagonistic effect of bottled water.”

So while these specific findings concerning DEHF are groundbreaking, the overall conclusion to be drawn from this research is that far more study is needed to determine the types of chemicals that are being leeched from plastic into our food and water, not to mention the extent of this leeching. And since the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the rest of the three-letter government agencies will surely never get around to conducting this important research, independent science will simply have to take up the charge.

“This work is a ‘tour de force’ in identification of endocrine disruptors in packaged materials,” says Bruce Blumberg from the University of California, Irvine, as quoted by Chemistry World. This type of analysis, he adds, “will be very important for our future understanding of what chemicals we are routinely exposed to and which of these pose hazards of being endocrine disruptors.”

You can read the full study abstract here:
http://www.plosone.org

In the meantime, conscious consumers can avoid plastic containers whenever possible and simply use glass or steel containers instead to avoid these unknown risks.

Source: http://complete-health-and-happiness.com/bottled-water-found-to-contain-over-24000-chemicals-including-endocrine-disruptors/

Here’s an article that includes an expensive list of brands of bottled water high in fluoride and those that test low:

http://www.healty365days.com/?p=1047

Another health concern in regard to water in plastic bottles has to do with what happens when they are left in your car or other “hot box” environment. Find out why you should never drink that water:

http://www.realsimple.com/health/water-bottle-safety

Of course current problems aren’t just confined to bottled water. Most municipal water systems have been found to contain an alarming number of toxins, prescription drugs, etc. The list of contaminants now known to be present in drinking water at a VA Hospital in CT is especially scary:

http://www.naturalnews.com/053406_VA_hospitals_water_supply_toxic_chemicals.html

But there is some good news on the horizon. A student from Iceland has invented a biodegradable bottle made of water and red marine algae that is even edible….

For more on the story:

http://www.naturalnews.com/053823_plastic_bottles_gelled_algae_landfill_waste.html

Related Self-help Health posts:

Water, Water Everywhere, But Not A Drop To Drink

Structured Water: H2OMG!

Structured Water: Part II

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

 

Be Sure To Give Yourself A Hug Today!

I just finished reading part of yet another article about the devastating effect lockdowns and social distancing are having on the mental and emotional well-being of many people,….. sometimes more detrimental than the virus itself.

But great synchronicity was at work, because right after that article I received an e-mail with this Jin Shin Jyutsu hold/flow. I feel this could actually help alleviate feelings of disconnection and depression, plus what’s great about JSJ it’s so simple to practice and every hold has multiple benefits, so you always get more than you bargained for.

Hopefully you’re in a position to get real hugs on a regular basis, but if not, put this to work for you. As they say, a hug a day keeps the doctor away!

p. s. Do a search on this blog for more JSJ routines. 🙂

Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YwiUBe50_GI&feature=youtu.be

And try these easy JSJ finger holds to relieve stress, worries and a sense of insecurity and help relax the body:

Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jIe1DbtARgI

See this Self-help Health post to get a more in-depth understanding of JSJ and finger holds: Jin Shin Jyutsu: One of my favorite DIY health aids!

Salud, and have an inspired and inspiring holiday season!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional/your inner knowing before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

The Motherlode of DIY Gifts & Ideas!

Too bad I didn’t know about this great post from Vitacost until the newsletter I received today arrived with a link to it, BUT if it’s too late for you to try some of these this holiday season, there’s always next year!

You’ll be able to find many of the ingredients/supplies at Vitacost at a discount, so if you’re new to shopping there, you should sign up for a free account at Rakuten (formerly eBates.com) and shop through that portal. That way you’ll earn a nice reward (I got a $10 gift card) from Rakuten, if you’re a new member, when you spend at least $25 at one of the hundreds of stores they link to, PLUS earn cash back on your Vitacost purchase(s). If you do much shopping on-line, then going through Rakuten is a great way to earn money on many of your orders!

50+ DIY Gifts For Everyone On Your List

by Katie 

Holiday gifts for home

Gifts are fun to give and receive, but homemade gifts add an extra special touch of thoughtfulness. Even if you’re not crafty or creative, there are tons of easy-to-make DIY gifts that will impress any recipient! This comprehensive list of 50+ handmade gifts has a little something for everyone, from your food-loving co-worker to your beauty-obsessed aunt, and everyone in between. Happy making and happy gifting!

DIY Holiday Gifts: Collage of DIY Ideas

DIY gifts for foodies

Food is an obvious choice — after all, who doesn’t love a batch of baked-from-scratch cookies or a tin full of homemade holiday truffles? Here are our favorites:

DIY Infused Vinegars

Chocolate-Covered Strawberries

Gluten-Free Cookies in a Jar

Chocolate Chip Caramel Bar Mix in a Jar

Chocolate-Covered Cookie Dough Truffles with Cherries

Holiday Chocolate Coconut Truffles

Dark Chocolate Superfood Bark

Cranberry-Pistachio Dark Chocolate Bark

Vegan Salted “Caramel” Dark Chocolate Bark

Chocolate Clusters with Pumpkin Seeds & Blueberries

White Chocolate Peppermint Fudge

Spiced Honey Nuts

Roasted Coconut Almonds

Homemade Honeycomb Candy

Toasted Oat Brittle

Soft Caramel Candies

Homemade Cashew Butter with Cinnamon

Holiday Cup o’ Cheer (Hot Chocolate Mix)

Homemade Chai Tea Mix

More ideas:

15 Holiday Cookie Swap Recipes

Mason Jar Gift Ideas

Homemade beauty gifts

For the hostess who could use a little “me” time in the tub, or the co-worker who can’t resist a skin scrub — how about a homemade beauty gift? Many of these easy DIY gifts can be made in larger batches, if you’re gifting to a group:

DIY Coconut Mint Soap Bars

Twine-Tied Homemade Herbal Soap

Homemade Bath Fizzies 

Pumpkin Spice Bath Bombs

DIY Bath Bombs with Essential Oils

Whipped Chocolate Body Butter

Whipped Peppermint Body Butter

Peppermint Sugar Scrub

Cinnamon-Sugar Body Scrub

Cacao-Mint Sugar Scrub

Rejuvenating Coffee Body Scrub

Cocoa Massage Cream

DIY Body Oil

Refreshing Spray Toner Mist 

Elderberry Lip Balm

More ideas:

3 DIY Beauty Gifts You Can Make with Coconut Oil

3 Soothing DIY Gifts For Mom (includes a Chamomile Oatmeal Bath Soak!)

How to Build a Beauty Gift Basket

DIY gifts for home

Give the gift of holiday scents, with homemade potpourri, candles, air mist, incense and more — or help your recipient tidy up after the holiday frenzy with homemade cleaning and laundry products. These DIY home gifts are perfect for anyone on your list:

Homemade Holiday Potpourri

DIY Candles with Natural Aromas

Beeswax Candles with Essential Oils

Christmas Tree Mist

Homemade Incense

DIY Diffuser with Pink Salt

Essential Oil Window Cleaner

Lavender Fabric Softener

Granite Countertop Cleaner

Aromatherapy Eye Pillow

5 Homemade Ornaments from Natural Ingredients (including Homemade Organic Salt-Dough Ornaments)

Mens shaving and grooming DIY gifts on white background

DIY gifts for him

What do you get for the guy who has everything? Make him something yourself — like cologne or grooming products with natural, skin-soothing ingredients! 

DIY Citrus Vetiver Cologne

Natural Shave Cream with Eucalyptus

DIY Soothing Organic Aftershave 

Peppermint Muscle Recovery Rub

homemade dog biscuits for holiday gift

DIY gifts for pets & kids

Don’t forget the kiddos and furry friends! We’ve gathered some easy homemade recipes for outdoor fun (slime, anyone?), as well as DIY toys and treats for your pets!

For pets:

DIY Gingerbread Treats

DIY Catnip Trees

Vegan Peanut Butter Dog Treats

Apple Sweet Potato Dog Biscuits

DIY Braided Ball Dog Toy 

For kids:

Homemade Chalk Paint

DIY Glue-Free Natural Slime

How to wrap homemade gifts

Once you’re done crafting and creating, check out these eco-friendly gift wrap ideas, for impressively adorned presents with minimal impact to the planet!

by Katie, Content Manager (and a loyal customer) at Vitacost.com.

 Source: https://www.vitacost.com/blog/diy-gifts-christmas-hanukkah/

Related Self-help Health post: Holiday Recipes & DIY Gift Ideas

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional/your inner knowing before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

The Main Central: Jin Shin Jyutsu Source of Life Flow

Oh, I was so glad to find this article from Astrid at FlowsforLife.com in my inbox recently. I used to do this particular Jin Shin Jyutsu routine/flow on a regular basis, but somehow got out of the habit somewhere along the way. It was always a favorite of mine,…. it helps with so many different things, plus is easy and comfortable to do. I usually did it while lying in bed first thing in the morning, or sometimes before going to sleep at night…or when I would wake up in the middle of night, because it helped me get back to sleep.

If you want to give yourself a little break during the day, try this routine and hold any or all positions that seem pertinent at the time. And as we head into winter, at least in my part of the country, this is a great one for tuning up the body and strengthening your life force energy. Circulation, heart health, thyroid and parathyroid, mental clarity, spine, stomach, metabolism and more….Main Central’s got you covered!

PERSONAL TIP: When doing this routine, make sure you are as comfortable as possible, so you can sink into the full relaxation response Main Central will trigger in your body. Usually my muscles begin to let go and my breathing slows and deepens within a minute or two of starting this “flow.” To make myself extra comfortable, I put a pillow under my right arm to help hold it in position w/ my hand on my head and pull the covers up over it to make sure that part of my body stays warm in the winter. And I use a small Vibes Up therapy teddy bear under my left arm/elbow/wrist, depending on the point being held by my left hand/fingers. What’s cool is the bear not only supports my arm position, but also just so happens to add additional balancing/harmonizing and grounding energies to the body! Good deal!

Jin Shin Jyutsu Main Central Exercise

In Jin Shin Jyutsu, the Main Central IS the Source of Life. This is the energy that goes DOWN the FRONT of our body and UP the BACK. Main Central feeds all of our 144,000 energy functions. I liken it to the trunk of the energetic tree.

Be comfortable

To practise Main Central get into a comfortable position. You can do the exercise sitting down, but I prefer to lie down and support my arms (especially my right arm as it’s going to be in the same position for a while) with pillows and cushions. Hold each position for a few minutes each, or as long as you like! Some positions will feel so comfortable, you might spend an hour just in one hold.

There aren’t any rules – just enjoy!

Jin Shin Jyutsu Main Central Exercise

In this exercise, the right hand will remain on top of the head until the last hold when it moves to the coccyx, and the left hand moves down the front of the body as explained.

Top Tip

You can do the whole exercise or just choose the position that feels right for you in the moment. For instance, you might want to clear the head, so you could practice just the first position for a few minutes.

Clear the head

Position 1: Place Right Hand/Fingers on Top of Head
Maintain the right hand in this position during the routine through Positions 1 to 7.
AND
Place Left Fingers between Eyebrows
The Vital Force of Total Being. Revitalizes the deep energy circulation, improves memory, dissipates senility, harmonizes the pituitary gland and the pineal gland, controls blood pressure.

Release the pelvic girdle

Position 2: Place Left Fingers on Tip of Nose
Revitalizes superficial body energy circulation, releases tension in the pelvic girdle and reproductive organs.

Prevent heart attack

Position 3: Place Left Fingers on Center of Chest on the Sternum
Look for the ‘bump’ on the sternum, and place your fingers there. Revitalizes the Thyroid and Parathyroid; helps with facial muscular problems, helps prevent heart attacks, strokes, etc. Regulates metabolism and maintains mental balance. Helps us adapt to our surroundings and situations.

Help the immune system

Position 4: Place Left Fingers between Breasts on Sternum
Revitalizes the immune system for the prevention of cancer, AIDS, etc. Assists in child growth and mental development. Governs reproduction, generative and regenerative functions. Relieves nausea and anxiety. Assists with breathing.

Support the adrenals

Position 5: Place Left Fingers at Base of Sternum
The Controller of Human Destiny. Revitalizes the energy path of the spleen and the adrenals, assists in the secretion of digestive juices and hormones. Gateway to the solar energy system revitalizing the nervous system. Prevents diabetes.

Tone the abdominal muscles

Position 6: Place Left Fingers about an Inch above the Belly Button
Revitalizes abdominal muscle tone and intestinal function.

Strengthen the spine

Position 7: Place Left Fingers on Pubic Bone
Revitalizes the descending energy (down the front). Helps strengthen the spine.

Aid circulation in the legs and feet

Position 8: Right Hand moves from Top of Head to Base of Spine (Coccyx). Revitalizes the ascending energy (up the back), helps circulation in the legs and feet, helps cold and clammy hands and feet. Alleviates menstrual cramps.

Source: https://www.flowsforlife.com/exercise-the-main-central-source-of-life/

Related Self-help Health posts: Prime Mover & Jin Shin Jyutsu

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional/your inner knowing before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.