Overall Wellness vs. Cancer- Part Five: How Much is on YOUR Skin?

img_1203Hi!  I’m so glad you came back!

Today I’m continuing with the Overall Wellness vs. Cancer series that I started at the end of August.  So far, we’ve gone over the importance of label reading, trust and the big brands, the so-called experts, and our food.  I still have many categories for this series and I will keep on writing until I’ve covered them all.  Ready for the next?  Here we go…

Personal care items.  What do we know about the products that we slather all over our bodies?  Did you know that most people put on around 150 toxic chemicals on their bodies before 9am?   From soaps to moisturizers, toothpaste, deodorants, hand sanitizers, mouth washes, makeup, sunscreens, shaving creams, nail polishes… There are a gagillion items we use in and on our bodies.  So let’s start from the top, our head…

We use shampoo, conditioners, hair color, hair spray, hair gel, what else?  Medicated shampoos, hair balm, perms, relaxers… Let’s think about this.  The stuff that goes on our head/hair it also affects our scalp, you know, the skin directly above and surrounding our brain?  Have you ever read the label for any of these products?  I promise, it’s like trying to read Greek!  Now think about this, skin, which is an organ on our body, absorbs.  So all those ingredients that we can’t pronounce or don’t know what it is… yup, our skin, including our scalp, absorbs whatever it is we put on it.

Next, products on our face.  Cleansing with soap or whatever items that’s used, moisturizers, toners, eye cream, shaving cream, sunscreen, cosmetics, lip balm, makeup remover, acne products, lighteners, eye lash growing serum… what else?  What am I missing?  I guess we could say that each of the items listed can have subcategories.  Again, have you read any of the labels for these items?  Same rules from above apply when it comes to skin absorption.

On to our body… Name the stuff we put on our skin with me, can you do it?  Let’s do it together.  Lotion, sunscreen, soap, baby oil, perfumes, powders, medicated creams like cortisone, neosporin,  and/or Bengay, acne body washes, lightening/bleach creams… That’s a LOT of stuff!  I’ll ask again… ever read the ingredient labels?  And remember, the skin absorbs!

Here are the extras that go on or in our bodies… Nails- Nail polish, nail polish remover, cuticle creams.  Feet- Foot creams, ointments and antifungals.  Underarms- deodorant or powders.  In the mouth- mouthwash, toothpaste, teeth whiteners, flavored floss, and plastic toothbrushes.  And another area that people don’t like to talk about, private parts.  There are medicated creams/ointments for those sensitive areas, front, and back.  Also, tampons and pads should be considered.  Yup, can you believe it?  Pesticide use in the cotton industry makes cotton susceptible to pesticide residue.  I dunno, just something to take into consideration.

Okay, did we do it?  I think we’ve covered most personal care products.  If you think of anything else, please share and put it in the comment section below as I’m always learning.  🙂

I knew there were a lot of stuff that we use on our bodies, but writing this post and listing them… geez, I didn’t realize how much is used on a daily basis!  I can name 12 items that I use on average almost daily.  How about you?  The Environmental Working Group (EWG) did a survey several years back and women use an average of 12 items which contains up to 168 unique ingredients!!  Not all ingredients are toxic, but unfortunately, with the amount of chemicals that we are exposed to, who’s to say what mixes and what doesn’t?  AND, there are certain common ingredients used in our personal care products that when combined, forms benzene, a known carcinogen!  Just in case you forgot what carcinogen means, here, as defined by Google… “A substance that is capable of causing cancer in living tissue.”

So.  We’re learning.  Together.  To understand Overall Wellness vs. Cancer doesn’t take a brain surgeon, or a rocket scientist.  It takes the willingness to learn, understand, and to make smart decisions based on what we’ve been talking about.  Poisons in our environment wether it’s in our own home or outside, or in the refrigerator, or medicine cabinet, shower, laundry room, backyard… When we pay attention with our eyes wide open and ask questions, we are able to clearly see what are the potential cancer causers and how to avoid them.

Personal care products are LOADED with chemicals and many people have no idea that these products may be a possible reason why they have a new rash on their arm or that their skin is absorbing a toxin that their body is reacting to.  Seriously, think about it, 150 plus ingredients on our skin every day?

Okay, so what can we do about it?  First thing first… it’s OVERWHELMING the amount of junk that we have to deal with, so take a deep breath!  I just did.  My best advice?  Take 10 minutes a day and start reading labels.  At first it feels like you’re reading a whole new language, and you are!  Here’s what to look for that may help while you’re trying to decipher the ingredients…

  • Look for the Nos- Meaning, look for “No” Sulfates or “No” Paraben… stuff like that.  The more Nos on the package, the better.
  • Look for organic ingredients or better yet, purchase products with the Organic Seal.
  • Don’t be fooled by the word “Natural” as it has become a catch-all word that doesn’t necessarily mean anything natural at all.
  • The less ingredients on the label, the better.
  • If you use phone apps, EWG has a Healthy Living app that can help you out.

It’s a lot, I know, but if we do a little something every day to broaden our ingredient language, it will get easier.  Everything we do, every choice we make, we CAN push cancer and other ailments away when we become aware of what it is that is in our every day environment, including our bodies.  TM ❤

 

~I am not a doctor, a scientist, or professional advisor.  I am a concerned citizen for our planet, the critters, and our children.  Everything I write is from my heart and the knowledge that I share is from many many hours of research.  TM

Overall Wellness vs. Cancer- Part One: Label Reading

Overall Wellness vs. Cancer- Part Two: Trust & the Big Brands

Overall Wellness vs. Cancer- Part Three: The Experts?

Overall Wellness vs. Cancer- Part Four: Food is Medicine

Overall Wellness vs. Cancer- Part Four: Food is Medicine

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Hi and welcome back!

Today is all about the food we eat.  This post will be a bit longer than the others in this series as there is much to cover, so thanks for sticking around.

What does food have to do with cancer?  Well, first of all, food is not the same as what our grandparents ate.  How do we know this?  Look at the ingredients in the foods we eat, I highly doubt that “imitation grape flavor” were a part of Grandma’s daily diet.  We have become a nation of fast food, microwave TV dinners, and a generation of people that are too busy to cook.  We are not eating whole organic foods that nourish the body and helps to keep us healthy.  It’s easy to buy a prepackaged meal loaded with unpronounceable ingredients or have pizza delivered, but the problem with this?  We have become nutrient deficient.  We are eating chemicals and pesticides.  We are eating foods without thinking about what it is that we are actually eating.  We are making ourselves sick and not even realizing it.  Eating pesticides and harmful ingredients, well, think about this… pesticides are a known carcinogen which means… cancer.

Yes, even the food that we think is nourishing our bodies can be cancer causers.  I can’t believe I have to write something as horrible as that.  We would think that food, any food, would be healthy and nutritious once we put it in our mouths and start chewing.  Unfortunately, that’s not the case.  I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “You are what you eat” and in today’s world of processed, prepackaged foods and ingredients that we can’t pronounce, this couldn’t be more relevant.

Here are a few reasons why…

~Food crops are doused in synthetic pesticides.  The pesticides then travel through the roots, the stem, the leaves and eventually the fruit.  You can’t wash that stuff off.  Think about the word “pesticide.”  Cide means to kill, and just because there is “pest” or “insect” or “herb” in front of cide, cide is not picky.  Cide doesn’t necessarily know the difference between the words that are put in front of it.  Crop seeds are also now manipulated and most (corn/soy) are injected with a pesticide so that when the plant grows, bugs that try to eat that plant will die by their inners exploding.  Sound familiar?  Eat enough of that type of food and viola!  Gut problems!  You can’t wash the pesticides off of those particular crops either as it has been injected.  Eating organic is the best way in avoiding synthetic pesticides.  Yes, organic uses pesticides as well, but it is not synthetic and it breaks down quickly and can be easily washed off.

~When was the last time you looked at the back of a food package and read the ingredient label?  See all those unpronounceable words?  Most are preservatives, fake colors, imitation flavors, fillers, ingredients that have nothing to do with that food item that you’re about to put into your mouth, basically, chemicals.  My question to you is, why?  Why put that chemically laden, fake cheese flavored pretend crunchy snack into your body?

Our bodies are not made to eat poison… period.  So when people wonder why they can’t lose weight, or they have gut problems, or now they have symptoms that they never had before, well, think about it.  We are loading ourselves up with toxins and now our liver is doing double time.  Or our gut is constantly not feeling well, maybe headaches come on a regular basis or even dizziness or constant fatigue.  And then there are skin problems as well, as our bodies will do whatever it takes to get toxins OUT and it may be in the form of bumps, rashes or rough patches on our largest living organ on our body.

Look around you.  Our country is not healthy, and the number one killer disease in children is now cancer.  We are feeding our children nutrition lacking foods that all bodies need to thrive, grow and stay healthy.  When our bodies don’t get the proper vitamins and minerals that keep our system intact, our body has no way to fight or protect itself from the toxins that are so prevalent in our daily lives.

~”Processed foods” are two words that we are all familiar with, but how well do we actually know how processed foods are made?  What exactly is processed food?  If you Google it, the definition is, “… foods that are packaged in boxes, cans or bags.”  Usually, there is a high sugar content (almost always from GMO sugar beets), high sodium, refined oils (some oils in foods are also used to clean machinery), “natural flavorings” which is a mystery ingredient that can have who knows what in it, unrecognizable ingredients, and imitation blah blah blah.  Yuck.  And I don’t even wanna get into how these factories make these foods as it’s definitely not how Grandma used to make!  Not all processed foods are bad though, as long as you’re using your knife or buying a bag of organic precut carrots.

Food is medicine.  Organic whole foods have all the nutrients that our body craves and needs.  Most fast foods, prepackaged foods, and processed foods are missing essential vitamins and minerals that help maintain our health.  Most Americans are deficient in iodine (Essential for healthy thyroid functioning), magnesium (Helps with heart, muscle and nerve functions and keeps bones strong), B vitamins (Regulates skin, nails, hair, improves circulation, digestion, nervous system, cells, and red blood cells), D vitamin (Helps with maintaining levels of calcium and phosphorus in the blood), potassium (Maintains healthy blood pressure levels), vitamin E (protects against several cancers), calcium (Helps with strong bones, gums and teeth) and vitamin C (Vital for a healthy immune system).  Can you see why I say food is medicine?  I am not a doctor, but I probably know more about nutrition then they do, as medical doctors only get 23.9 hours of nutritional education and I’ve been researching health and nutrition for years now.

I don’t want cancer.  I don’t think you want cancer either.  I have found that the more I research and do my homework, I’m able to connect the dots and put the puzzle pieces together to avoid cancer and one of the ways I do it, is by eating whole organic foods.  Real spinach, real bananas, real tomatoes, pasture free range eggs, shopping at the Farmers’ Market every weekend and fixing all my household meals.

I’m not saying what I’m writing is the silver bullet that will magically end cancer, but what I am saying is this… Do your best to be informed so that you can make educated decisions about what you put into your body.  The more you become familiar, really familiar with the foods that nourishes your body, you will understand why I continue and keep continuing to say, “Food is Medicine.” TM ❤

 

~I am not a doctor, a scientist, or professional advisor.  I am a concerned citizen for our planet, the critters, and our children.  Everything I write is from my heart and the knowledge that I share is from many many hours of research.  TM

Overall Wellness vs. Cancer- Part One: Label Reading

Overall Wellness vs. Cancer- Part Two: Trust & the Big Brands

Overall Wellness vs. Cancer- Part Three: The Experts?

 

 

Overall Wellness vs. Cancer- Part Two: Trust & the Big Brands

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In Part One, I spoke about reading labels and how reading labels helps to identify ingredients that are toxic, or a carcinogen.  That’s a start.  That was the beginning of my toxic free journey and by reading labels, I’ve learned even more than just ingredients.

Okay, so for today’s post, I’m gonna write about products we think helps us to be healthy.  Who helps us to think about a product and if it’s healthy or not?  Unfortunately, creative marketing throughout the years by corporations that we’ve become familiar with since we were kids, have altered our views and made many content in believing in the product that is being sold to us.  The corporations ‘help’ us to decipher what is healthy and we’re okay with it.   We’ve been comfortable with the idea that, for example,  Johnson&Johnson’s baby products would never harm us!  I mean think about it… what’s their tag?  “No More Tears” right?  And yet as I read the label of their products, why would they use ingredients that are carcinogens?  Or endocrine disruptors?  And this is supposed to be safe for our babies?  This is where some of our problems with our health start and most people don’t even realize it.

We think that we can trust these big brands that we grew up with because, well, shucks, we grew up with them, sang their songs… “I’d like to teach the world to sing…”, and what’s the difference now?  Part of the problem is that too many don’t ask questions, don’t read labels, and continue doing what they always have and purchase the same products.  But the products have changed over time and ingredients that may have been okay before are now replaced with cheaper, man-made, untested ingredients that keeps the corporation profitable and the consumers are unaware and wondering why they have a new rash on their arm.  It’s not just rashes, it’s more than that… there are now ingredients that are known carcinogens in the products that we purchase and we think that because we’ve seen these companies all our lives, we trust them to be healthy and safe.

These harmful ingredients give the person who uses them a higher percentage of cancer and or other health problems.  Come on, let’s think about what I just wrote, I’ll say it again but worded differently…  If we are using products with carcinogenic ingredients, do you think that we have a higher risk of getting cancer?  Common sense would tell us, yes.

Cancer sucks.  Chronic illnesses suck.  Obesity sucks.  Being unhealthy sucks.  This has become the norm for waaaaay too many people.  We need to stop the chaos that is attacking our health everywhere we look.  The solution starts with us.  Read labels, ask questions, be informed because YOU looked into it, not because of a commercial.  A different way of thinking needs to happen, a mindful way that no amount of marketing can duplicate.  We can change it, the more we know… right?  TM ❤

 

**Please note… I am not a doctor and everything I write in this post is my opinion only.

 

 

Does Size Really Matter? Essante Organics Laundry Liquid Concentrate

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When did we become so obsessed with size?  How did we get so brainwashed into believing that quantity is better than quality?  Maybe it’s because of all those “super-size-me” commercials?  I dunno, but for some reason we have been led to believe that more is better and if it’s 99 cents, it’s a deal!  It has been imbedded in our minds for so long that we need cheap, buy one get one free, but at 99 cents, what are we really getting?

I know you get what you pay for, and I knew the bottles would be small when I read the labels in the catalogue, but it was still an eye-opener when I opened my very first box of Essante Organics… I was so excited, got the knife out to cut the box open, pushing the popcorn packaging out of the way to retrieve my toxic free goods… *my heart sank just a little*… Eight products and some catalogues all fit in that little box?

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Oh my, the Laundry Liquid bottle is soooo small!  Sixteen ounces?  With all the laundry I do, that’ll last my family about a day, if I’m lucky!  I’m so used to seeing a Costco sized detergent that barely fits under my upright washing machine.  Hmmmm… well, I’m getting what I paid for, right?  Quality over quantity, 100% certified toxic free and no matter what the size of the bottles are, I’m striving for a healthier lifestyle for my family, even if it is on the pricier side… *ahem*

One month later…

I can’t believe I still have laundry detergent!!  It really is true, one capful for a load of laundry and two capfuls if they’re extra dirty!  I didn’t tell anyone in my household when I started using the Essante Laundry Liquid, I just wanted to see if anybody noticed a difference and sure enough, the day came when I got my answer…

I was in the backyard when my Hubby came around the corner wearing the clothes that I knew I washed in the EO Laundry Liquid.  I told him and he looked at me funny.  Then he said to me, “I know this will sound odd, but when I put my clothes on this morning, I noticed that they felt really clean.”  That’s all I needed!  You see, my Husband has always had a sensitive nose about the “smell” of the freshly laundered towels, or, he’ll put a sleeve to my nose and will ask me for a sniff test.  The fact that he said the clothes felt clean, literally made me jump up and down and clap my hands!

So, the moral of the story is, you can’t judge a product based on quantity.  You get what you pay for and I’m so delighted that I now have a new laundry soap that is 100% Certified Toxic Free, Hubby Approved… and conveniently fits under my upright washing machine.  🙂

You can find Essante Organics Laundry Liquid Concentrate here at www.EssanteOrganics.com/AskTracy

 

Label Reading Blues

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Are you one of the many who are just waking up to the realities of what’s going on with our chemical world?  When you go into the grocery store or to a Target, are you reading your labels before you put that item into your cart?  When you discover what’s on the label, after putting that item back on the shelf, do you get mad?  Do you feel like you’re falling in a never ending hole by the endless amount of words that are unpronounceable on our ingredient labels for personal care products and our food?  Well, you’re not alone!

The view is so clear once the blinders have been removed, and all of a sudden, we realize that the scenery is not very pleasurable.  How in the world did our food and our everyday household and personal items become so toxic?  Who let this happen?  These questions are a whole other article, and right now I want to focus on the feelings that we get when we go into a store or into a restaurant having a clear view and an understanding that soooooo many items around us are toxic.  I know how I feel, and I’m sure you feel it too… angry, disappointed and betrayed.

No matter how we feel about being bombarded by constant negativity, we can still make positive change.  Because you’re here and reading these words, please know that you are all ready making change, no matter how frustrating you may feel after you leave the store.  I am writing this article to let YOU know that you’re doing a FANTASTIC job.  Please keep in mind that purposeful change takes time.  When the blinders come off, seeing all that there is to see, can be quite alarming and yes, very overwhelming.  But don’t give up!  Keep at it and the more you do it, the more proficient you become.  How do I know?  Because in my pre label reading days, running an errand to the store took me 15 minutes.  Then I started reading labels, and doing that same errand, now took twice as long as I was now trying to decipher a whole other language!  It does get easier though, you’ll see.

I’ve discovered that the more I learn, the healthier I’ve become and my lifestyle has changed dramatically.  The world around you opens up to the possibilities that change, positive and purposeful, can happen.  It’s the empowerment of knowledge that feels so good, to not have any corporation or brand tell you what is good for you.  You tell YOU what is good for you.  Take it a little at a time, breathe deep, and know that you are doing everything possible to make purposeful change.  Reading a label takes time.  I know you can do it, I did and still am learning, and I will keep encouraging you to do so as well.  Hey look!  The view is already getting better. 🙂

 

To help you save some time at the store, I have found these apps to be helpful…

https://tracymadlener.wordpress.com/2014/02/27/can-you-pronounce-those-toxic-words-me-neither/

 

Essante’ Organics… Let The Journey Begin

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Okay… so many of you know that I’m constantly spreading awareness about our foods, our personal care products and information about the big corporations that are poisoning our children’s planet.  I’m always asking others to make “purposeful” decisions and pay attention to what’s going on in our communities.  Change happens when we admit there’s a problem, get mad, ask questions, find solutions, and then implement those solutions daily to make it a habit which then creates change.  Sounds about right, doesn’t it?

One of the “purposeful” changes I’ve made over the past few years has been learning to read labels.  This is NOT an easy task unless you are a rocket scientist and even if you are, have you seen the ingredient label on the back of a shampoo bottle??  You might as well be reading the walls in the Egyptian tombs, at least there’s pictures!  Okay, but seriously, ingredient label reading should be a college course and be required reading for high school freshman… just saying.  🙂  What I have learned over the years is that if I can’t pronounce what’s on the label, or I don’t know what it is, I don’t buy it, period.  It’s crazy how many toxic chemicals are in and around our every day environment and our children are being affected daily.

I have been searching and trying and spending money (wasting money) on all kinds of products that the company promises me is healthy, natural, and they use good ingredients.  Lies… all lies and the poor sales people get suckered into the belief of the “tale” that the company is telling them.  If only those employees would just read their labels!  Just the other day I went into a store that I’ve never heard of before.  It was done all in green with beautiful plants and an organic looking atmosphere, of course I was instantly curious!  I’m always hoping to find non toxic and healthy products and by the way the store looked, it must be here.

I asked the salesperson to point me to their healthiest products.  She then told me that all their products are healthy because they are all plant based.  Ummm, okay, let me read the ingredient labels… I immediately saw carcinogenic ingredients in 4 out of 5 products.  I told the salesperson that I was looking for their non toxic products, she told me they didn’t have any organic products and that it was all plant based.  I then explained I wasn’t looking for organic, I was looking for non toxic, there’s a difference. *Looking at her sternly*  That’s about the time that my visit to their store ended as it was clearly obvious that this was another company telling me lies.  It may have also been because my youngest was laughing loudly and calling me a “blunt ax!”

That did it for me.  I’m so over the lies.  So, guess what I did?  I joined the Essante’ Organics family.  They are certified toxic free, no animal testing, no GMOs and they use organic and wild crafted ingredients.  I have just started down this path with them and I’m gonna journal it here, to share with you.  I’m hoping this is the solution that I’ve been looking for and I’m excited about the possibilities of a new and “purposeful” change.

In case you would like to check out what Essante Organics is all about, here’s a link… Essante’ Organics  

 

 

 

 

Can You Pronounce Those Toxic Words? Me Neither!

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I get asked all the time what I purchase when I go shopping.  And when they ask, they ask for everything!  From food to personal care products and even household cleaners, I am constantly looking for healthy, and they know it.  Yup, I’m a toxic free junkie and I’m always reading my labels and researching words that I can’t pronounce!  I guess that’s why people who know me are always asking me about ingredients and labels.  With that being said, I have included in this post links and apps that I use on a regular basis to share with you.  We all need a little help when trying to decipher what those ingredients are and if you’re not a rocket scientist… well, you do like I do, use these resources to help you out.  Have a great day and keep reading those labels!

Websites

Food- Non GMO Project- http://www.nongmoproject.org/

Food- Non GMO Shopping Guide- http://nongmoshoppingguide.com/shopping-guide.html

Personal Care Products- EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetics Data Base- http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/

I use this site for the chemical definitions- Healthy Child Healthy World- http://healthychild.org/

Smart Phone Apps

BuyCott-  http://www.buycott.com/  This app lets you know who the parent company is that owns that brand.  For instance, Kellogg’s is the parent company for Kashi.  FREE

Fooducate- http://www.fooducate.com/  This app rates food products on how healthy it is.  If you want more advanced explanations, there is a fee, otherwise it’s FREE.

ipiit- http://www.ipiit.com/  I like this app because you can customize it to your food preferences, nut allergies, dairy, ect. BUT, it’s still a newer app and they are still growing their data base.  FREE

Skin Deep- http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/  Same as the data base from above, but the phone app version, though not as complete as the website.