Bad Habits that Make You Age Faster

Thursday, August 21, 2014 | comments

Certain lifestyle choices can make you look and feel older than you are. Steer clear of these saboteurs to stay younger, longer.

How you look and feel when you’re older may depend on how you live your life when you’re younger. To a great extent, good senior health means making good choices early on. That means getting rid of bad habits now that could threaten your physical well-being later. Here are eight culprits that speed up the aging process.


1. Smoking

It’s certainly no secret that smoking is bad for your health. But did you know it’s bad for your looks, too? Studies show that in addition to shortening your life by increasing your risk for heart and lung disease, smoking can activate enzymes that break down the elasticity of your skin. Even if you’re a closet smoker, the fine wrinkles and pallor that cigarettes cause can give you away — just one more reason to snuff out those smokes.

Crash Dieting

2. Crash Dieting
Who hasn’t wanted to drop 10 pounds in a hurry before a special birthday or a long-awaited vacation? Quick fixes are tempting, but crash dieting is never a good idea. It’s not a long-term solution — in fact, it may be a long-term threat. Research shows that it can make you feel older by reducing your energy level, messing with your concentration, and making you depressed and irritable. Crash dieting can also cause wrinkles and sagging, because aging skin, which has less elasticity, doesn’t have time to adjust to the weight loss. Weight management is important for senior health, but don’t try to lose more than one or two pounds a week.

Not Getting Enough Sleep

3. Not Getting Enough Sleep
You may think that as you get older you don’t need as much sleep, but experts say you still need seven or eight hours every night for optimal senior health. Not getting enough sleep can keep you from functioning well during the day. It can also lead to weight gain, another drag on senior health. If you are going to bed at a reasonable hour, yet feel like you’re dragging during the day, talk to your doctor to rule out sleep disorders such as sleep apnea, which is common in seniors.

Skipping Fruits and Veggies

4. Skipping Fruits and Veggies
It’s true that as you get older you need fewer calories. However, if you want to have a spring in your step and the glow of healthy aging — rather than a drawn complexion with wrinkles — you need to get those calories from good, nutritious sources. A junk-food or meat-and-potatoes diet just won’t cut it. Experts say the best sources are lots of colorful fruits and vegetables. Also be sure your diet includes fish with heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids, as well as plenty of fiber from whole grains.

Holding on to Grudges

5. Holding on to Grudges

Life is too short and precious to hold on to old grudges. Learning how to let go and forgive may add years to your life and make the years you have left a lot more productive. (You might even notice fewer wrinkles from frowning.) Studies show that forgiveness leads to better physical, psychological, and spiritual well-being. Benefits include lower blood pressure, less depression, less stress, and less anxiety.

Carrying Around Stress

6. Carrying Around Stress
Nothing can make you feel or act older like mental decline. Studies show that letting go of stress can help you avoid cognitive impairment and keep your mind young. Try to identify your stressors and find ways to avoid them or to diffuse their effects through relaxation techniques such as meditation or exercise.

Becoming a Couch Potato

7. Becoming a Couch Potato
Speaking of exercise… Regular physical activity is a healthy aging essential for many things, from staving off heart disease to keeping stress at bay. But one of the main reasons to keep exercising is to prevent injury. An injury that limits mobility and, in turn, your independence is a potentially life-threatening blow to senior health. Research shows that just 30 minutes of walking three times a week can lower your risk for a fall, the leading cause of disabling injuries in seniors. So break the sloth habit and get moving.

Drinking Alcohol

8. Drinking Alcohol
You may have heard that moderate drinking is good for senior health, but what’s considered “moderate” changes as you get older. According to the American Geriatrics Society, more than one drink a day for an older man and half of one for an older woman can be too much. Excessive alcohol consumption can cause cognitive decline and may contribute to falls. Alcohol can also interfere with some medications. Ask your doctor how much alcohol — if any — is safe for you.


Early Warning Signs of Cancer That Cannot Be Ignored

Tuesday, August 19, 2014 | comments

Early Warning Signs of Cancer That Cannot Be Ignored

When it comes to cancer, no one wants to be caught off guard with its diagnosis. Unfortunately, many people are initially surprised when they hear that they have the signs of a particular type of cancer only to later realize that the signs had been there for quite some time. Because early detection is often the key to a better prognosis, it is imperative that the following early warning signs of cancer not be ignored.

While some fatigue can be considered almost normal given today’s busy schedules, if a person suddenly finds that they must take a long nap in order to accomplish their responsibilities, it is cause for concern. An American Cancer Society report noted that this could be a sign of cancers such as leukemia, colon or stomach cancer. Other cancers that cause a great deal of blood loss could also be at play.

Low-grade fever that lasts
A low-grade fever — typically classified as a body temperature between 99.8 and 100.8 degrees Fahrenheit — can be a sign of a number of infections. In addition, it can also be a sign of cancers such as Hodgkin’s disease, leukemia and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Because it could be the first sign of such cancer, it is important to get a recurring low-grade fever checked out.

Early Warning Signs of Cancer That Cannot Be Ignored

Problems with swallowing

In addition to having problems swallowing, other disturbing signs that should not be ignored include lip sores that do not heal within the normal time parameters, a sore throat that does not go away or that recurs, persistent hoarseness that does not go away or that comes back, bleeding that is unusual or unexplained mouth pain. According to the National Institute on Health, the above signs could be due to oral cancers such as throat, esophageal and tongue cancers. Additionally, other, non-cancerous causes could be the reason.

Weight loss that cannot be explained

Though it can seem to be a paradox given the epidemic of obesity that is noted across the globe, a person who cannot explain their sudden weight loss should be concerned. While in normal circumstances losing weight would be a welcome sight, if an individual finds themselves suddenly losing weight without trying to diet, exercise more or perform other lifestyle changes, it could be due to cancer. The American Cancer Society notes that this type of sudden weight loss could be a sign of stomach, lung, esophageal or pancreatic cancers, though it could be related to other serious health conditions as well.

If a person notes any of the above signs, it is best to see a doctor as soon as possible. In fact, any significant bodily changes not brought on intentionally by a person should be brought to the attention of a physician as soon as possible.


7 Everyday Products Definitively Linked To Cancer

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7 Everyday Products Definitively Linked To Cancer

The term ‘chemicals’ has become an all-encompassing, almost abstract notion that covers just about every nasty additive, manmade substance and damaging agent in the products we use every day. It’s an unfortunate reality that much of what we know about the effects of being surrounded by chemically-charged household items, like cleaning products, cosmetics, and some of our favorite foods, is still being determined: It’s not unusual to see a label that explicitly warns the consumer that some products found therein are made with chemicals that have been linked to cancer.

Large corporations, like the fast food franchises McDonald’s and Subway in the US, have known carcinogens in their food products that are, in fact, banned in countries like the United Kingdom, Singapore, and Australia. That’s a worrying fact that provokes a deeper consideration of what’s determined to be a permissible level of toxicity in common consumer goods.

But it seems, at times, that if we refused to touch anything that has been labelled as potentially carcinogenic, we’d be restricted to the point of absurdity. These products are all around us and as our world continues to modernize and mass production further expands, their presence is ever greater. While several regions largely exercise bans on the use of carcinogens, they remain pervasive but insidious ingredients in some of the products we use most often. Overall, it’s understood that we coexist with things that could potentially harm us. But to deliberately ingest something that in the long run could harm our health – like the seven items specified on this list – is intuitively unwise. The following details some of the most commonly used products that have the highest proven potential to cause cancer.

7. Hygiene and Beauty Products

Hygiene and Beauty Products

According to the Cancer Prevention Coalition, hygienic products like certain brands of talcum powder and toothpaste carry considerable traces of carcinogens. Beauty products like liquid foundation, shampoos, conditioners, and hair dyes have also been found to carry carcinogens. reports studies that prove a link between the use of permanent hair dyes and increased risk of leukemia and bladder cancer.

6. Pet Care Products

Pet Care Products

We readily treat our pets with chemicals. When a flea infestation should occur, it’s most convenient to douse the animal’s fur in an anti-tick and flea solution. Cat and dog flea collars carry the dangerous pesticide propoxur, a neurotoxin known to be harmful to humans.

Insulation in Houses

Insulation in Houses

It’s a given that cleaning products carry a cocktail of hazardous chemicals. Highly flammable skin and lung irritants in cleaning supplies like disinfectant spray and bleach products mean these basically necessary products should always be used responsibly. But what of those antimicrobial products we deliberately absorb into the skin? Ingredients in antimicrobial soaps and lotions feature the carcinogen triclocarban.

4. Insulation in Houses

Insulation in Houses
The insulation foam commonly placed inside the walls of homes carries chemicals that are known to cause cancer in humans after long periods of exposure. Fiberglass is found in the insulation of 90 percent of American homes – and it’s airborne, increasing the risk of lung cancer among other respiratory complications.

3. Air Fresheners

Air Fresheners

Household air fresheners and disinfectant sprays are a common commodity, even after a University of California, Berkeley study exposed the obscenely high levels of carcinogens in the most common air fresheners and found that frequent use of air freshening sprays pose serious health risks. Toluene, benzene, formaldehyde, and phthalates are common ingredients found in air fresheners and the effects of these on humans in large doses range from nausea, headaches and vomiting, to organ failure.

2. Alcohol


Sadly, not everything we take pleasure in is good for us – and alcohol is no exception. The health risks are widely known but alcohol is such an inherent part of so many cultures that we’re unlikely to be avoiding it any time soon.

With nearly 10 percent of cancers in men and 6 percent in women triggered by high alcohol consumption, the negative effects of alcohol abuse on the body can’t be overstated. In fact, researchers in Germany found that of eight European countries studied, 54,000 cases of individuals who suffer alcohol-related cancer — most commonly breast, liver, and colon cancers — could have avoided their illness if the men had consumed no more than 2 alcoholic beverages per day and the woman only had one. It’s evident from this study that moderation is key.

1. Tanning Beds

Tanning Beds

It’s enough of a health scare to bake under the sun for too long, the risk of skin cancer being a pertinent concern among people of all ages and from all walks of life. However, to tan in a tanning bed poses it’s own set of health risks. The International Agency for Research on Cancer listed ultraviolet emitting tanning devices among its “most dangerous forms of cancer-causing radiation”— right up there with plutonium and radium. The World Health Organization reports that individuals who start tanning in tanning beds before the age of 30 increase their risk of melanoma — the deadliest type of skin cancer — by 75 percent.


Three Spices That Attack Cancer Cells

Monday, August 18, 2014 | comments

Three Spices That Attack Cancer Cells

By the end of 2014, the number of worldwide deaths from cancer for that year is expected to total 7.6 million. According to the American Cancer Society, a third of these deaths – over 2 million – are fully preventable, and could have been avoided through lifestyle changes, early detection and treatment.

Of all the factors believed to contribute to the development of this deadly disease – among them smoking, excessive sun, genetics, alcohol use and exposure to environmental toxins – diet is among the most significant.

Don’t ever underestimate the power of your diet

Scientific research confirms that a diet laden with processed foods, sugar, additives and pesticides can set the stage for the development of cancer, while a daily menu rich in fresh, organic fruits and vegetables, whole grains and clean sources of protein can provide life-prolonging benefits – including the detoxification of carcinogens and mutagens and the reduction of oxidative stress.

Although antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables such as tomatoes, blueberries, broccoli and grapefruit seem to get the lion’s share of scientific credit for their disease-fighting effects, the vegetable drawer is not the only source of beneficial nutrients. For additional chemopreventive “superfoods,” you need look no further than your kitchen spice rack.

Three Spices That Attack Cancer Cells

Curcumin reduces inflammation and can target cancer cells

Scientifically known as curcuma longa, bright yellow turmeric powder gets its healing properties from its content of a polyphenol known as curcumin. Over 3,000 scientific studies have been conducted to date on curcumin – which has potent antioxidant, analgesic, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties.

Curcumin is also a powerful anti-proliferative agent that has been shown in laboratory studies to keep cancer cells from spreading. In a study of patients with advanced colorectal cancer, a daily dose of 3.6 grams of curcumin caused a dramatic 62 percent decrease in pro-inflammatory prostaglandin E2 production.

In another influential clinical trial, curcumin inhibited the activation of inflammatory COX-2 in multiple myeloma patients. In yet another clinical study, 8,000 milligrams of curcumin taken for 3 months caused significant improvement of precancerous lesions in patients with uterine cervical neoplasm.

What does science say about curcumin?

In a review published in 2008 in Cancer Letters, the authors noted that curcumin interferes with multiple cell signaling pathways, and is active against gastrointestinal, breast, lung and ovarian cancers, along with squamous cell carcinoma, a common form of skin cancer.

The authors of a 2011 review published in Molecular Cancer Therapeutics noted that curcumin, by interfering with growth factor receptors and cell adhesion molecules responsible for tumor growth and metastasis, works at the molecular level to slow the production of tumors. By suppressing a host of inflammatory substances, including transcription factor NF-kappa B cells – which are gene-altering inflammatory markers linked with the development of cancer – COX-2, cyclin D1 and interleukin, curcumin also attacked the inflammatory process that spurs cancer proliferation.

The authors pointed out that curcumin is non-toxic and features minimal side effects; they advised that it be utilized as an adjunct cancer therapy.

Three Spices That Attack Cancer Cells

Garlic causes “programmed suicide” in cancer cells

Garlic, or allium sativum, has long been credited with antibiotic, antiviral, antifungal and antiseptic effects. Now, it turns out that this hearty root vegetable is also a staunch cancer fighter. Researchers found that a garlic phytochemical known as diallydisulfide can cause apoptosis – programmed cell death – in human colon cancer cells.

Like curcumin, garlic also inhibits inflammatory COX-2 and NF-kappa B.

In addition, diallydisulfide reduces risk of inflammation and cancer by scavenging harmful free radicals and increasing levels of glutathione – a powerful antioxidant produced by the body. Finally, diallydisulfide pumps up the action of a pair of enzymes – glutathione S-transferase and catalase – responsible for preventing chromosomal damage.

Other beneficial nutrients in garlic include the essential mineral selenium, a powerful antioxidant, and assorted cancer-fighting and antioxidant carotenoids, including beta-carotene and zeaxanthin. University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC) cites several studies which demonstrated that people who regularly consumed raw or cooked garlic had a 30 percent reduction in their risk of colorectal cancer – a very significant decrease.

To get the maximum chemopreventive benefits, select whole bulbs of fresh, organic garlic. Avoid garlic paste and powder, UMMC advises 2 to 4 grams a day of fresh, minced garlic.

Three Spices That Attack Cancer Cells

Can fennel rival the effects of pharmaceutical cancer therapies?

Fennel, scientifically known as foeniculum vulgare, is closely related to parsley and dill, and features a pale, greenish bulb with frilly, feathery leaves. The piquant flavor of this refreshing herb is strongly reminiscent of licorice.

Fennel is packed with antioxidant flavonoids such as quercetin and rutin. H however, its primary active constituent is its volatile oil, which contains the phytochemical anethole. Like garlic and turmeric,fennel prevents the activation of NF-kappa B cells.

Fennel’s plentiful content of fiber, which helps to filter out carcinogenic toxins from the digestive tract, helps to protect its aficionados against colon cancer. In a study of mice with Ehrlich ascites carcinoma, anethole had strong antitumor activity. It increased survival time, decreased tumors and directly killed cancer cells – causing improvements on a level with the pharmaceutical cancer drug cyclophosphamide.

Other cell studies showed anethole acts against human breast cancer cells, and is potentially effective against lung cancer. For maximum health benefits, opt for fresh, organic fennel. The flavorful leaves may be used as salad greens.

Of course, you shouldn’t try to treat cancer with turmeric, garlic or fennel unless you are being supervised by a doctor or naturopathic physician. Especially when dealing with a serious health condition, always work with a qualified medical professional to design the best plan of action for your particular situation.

Having said that, when it comes to detoxifying the body, reducing damage from free radicals, and warding off cancer, this trio of herbs really does constitute the “spice of life.”


Top 6 Herbs & Spices For Losing Weight

Sunday, August 17, 2014 | comments

Top 6 Herbs & Spices For Losing Weight

Herbs and spices have long been used to enhance the taste of foods. It is only within the past few years that researchers have discovered that these popular components of everyday life can also aid in the weight loss battle that so many people wage. Below are six of the most potent herbs and spices that have been shown to have positive effects on weight loss.



In addition to boosting the metabolism – an important step in helping to lose weight as well as maintain a healthy weight – cinnamon has also been shown to be an effective regulator of blood sugar. Other benefits that have been noted in people with type 2 diabetes including a reduction in triglycerides, LDL – or bad – cholesterol and the total cholesterol levels. Additionally, the metabolism of glucose is increased by about 20 percent when cinnamon is consumed.



A mainstay in the cuisines of India, turmeric is the base from which a good curry is built. This yellow-orange spice contains curcumin which is one of its most studied components. Curcumin has been shown to suppress the blood vessels necessary to form fat tissue. This, in turn, may lower both weight gain and body fat.



Useful for both energy production and digestion, cumin is also helpful for improving glycemic control when it comes to people who have type 2 diabetes. Along with its long history of medicinal uses, cumin has also been shown to provide anti-stress benefits as well as enhance memory.



A warming spice, ginger has been shown to relax and smooth the intestinal tract. In addition, this popular spice has anti-inflammatory properties. Studies have pointed to ginger’s ability to both boost the body’s metabolism as well as suppress the appetite.



A plant in which every part is edible, dandelions are packed full of health benefits. They help to slow the digestive system which helps a person to feel fuller for a longer period of time. In addition to its antioxidant properties, dandelions also contain crystalline compounds that are bitter. These include taracerin, inulin, taraxacin and levulin, and are thought to be behind many of the plant’s therapeutic benefits. Dandelions contain fiber, beta carotene and vitamin K1 as well as other vitamins and minerals.



A member of the cruciferous family of plants that also includes Brussels sprouts, cabbage and broccoli, mustard can bump a person’s metabolic rate up by 25 percent. By eating 3/5 of a teaspoon of mustard seeds on a daily basis, the body could burn 45 additional calories per hour.

The type of herbs and spices that are purchased matters a great deal. Buying organic whenever possible helps ensure that there are no harmful chemicals intermingled with them as well as ensuring the highest quality.

12 Foods That Trigger Acne Breakout And 10 Natural Remedies To Banish Pimples

Saturday, August 16, 2014 | comments

12 Foods That Trigger Acne Breakout And 10 Natural Remedies To Banish Pimples

Trying to avoid an acne outbreak is often a major concern for many teenagers and adults. Here we list the most common acne inducing foods plus offer some natural solutions to clear up any pimples.

Acne is a common skin complaint that most people suffer from at some point. It is estimated that 80% of people between the ages of 11 and 30 will be affected by it in varying degrees.

Hormonal imbalances are partly to blame but food also plays a role in acne outbreaks. There seems to be that there are no common foods that have the same effect on every single person. For example, cheese may cause breakouts in one person but chocolate may result in an outbreak in another.

Here is a list of the most common foods that can trigger an acne breakout . To find out which foods trigger your particular breakouts simply try eliminating one or two foods at a time (for example eliminate dairy for one week, maybe greasy foods the next etc) to see if your skin remains clear or not.

If you want to make sure you don’t breakout, avoid all of these foods altogether as much as possible.

12 Foods That Trigger Acne Breakout And 10 Natural Remedies To Banish Pimples

Here are 12 most common trigger foods for acne:

1. Fast Food
2. Chocolate
3. Soda
4. Cheese
5. Spicy Foods
6. Pizza
7. Potato Chips
8. Milk
9. French Fries
10. Nuts
11. Peanut Buter
12. Ice Cream

Many commercial solutions for acne involve harsh chemicals. Too much scrubbing or cleansing with harsh soaps or chemicals can actually irritate your skin and making the acne worse. If you over clean you can end up drying out your skin, which will then react by producing even more sebum, continuing the vicious circle.
Acne is not usually a serious health threat, it can be frustrating, and sever acne can lead to scarring.

12 Foods That Trigger Acne Breakout And 10 Natural Remedies To Banish Pimples

Here are some natural remedies which can be used easily and effectively for clearer skin.


Tea tree oil is a powerful essential oil. It is an effective antibiotic and antiseptic. It Works by disinfecting the pores and kills the acne causing bacteria.

Mix a few drops of tea tree oil with an equal amount of water and apply using a cotton ball. Repeat three times a day.


Baking soda (also called sodium bicarbonate) can be a gentle and natural exfoliant for your skin, removing dead skin cells and unclogging the pores. It has anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties so can ease the inflammation of breakouts. By helping to restore the natural pH of the skin it prevents future breakouts. It can be used as a skin wash or made into a mask for a more intensive treatment once or twice a week.

Skin wash – mix 2 tablespoons of baking soda, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon powder, 5 tablespoons of pure organic honey and the juice of a lemon. Apply with gentle rubbing movements and leave on your face for five minutes before rinsing with warm water.

Skin mask – mix a few teaspoons of baking soda with warm water until it forms a paste. Leave it on for only 10 to 15 minutes the first few times as it may feel powerful and sting. You can gradually increase the time up to an hour or even leave it on overnight. Often results can be seen after just one use.


Coconut oil is a great moisturizer but it also has anti-fungal and antibacterial properties. It helps to destroy the bacteria behind the acne breakout and reduce redness.
Buy unrefined organic coconut oil and just massage it into your skin two or three times a day – you will find your skin is clearer, softer and hydrated.


Aloe vera gel is very soothing on the skin and due to its’ natural anti-inflammatory power it can reduce redness and inflammation of the skin very quickly. It can also heal any scars from acne outbreaks.
You can buy aloe vera gel or use pure aloe vera gel from cutting open a leaf from an aloe plant and squeezing the fresh gel out. Apply the gel to your skin using clean fingers, repeating several times a day.


Another great anti-fungal and antibacterial product. Use raw organic apple cider vinegar and make a solution of 2 parts ACV to 1 part water. Apply to the skin and leave for a few minutes before rinsing.


Garlic is a great oral antibiotic as well as a topical treatment. Use a thinly sliced glove of fresh garlic and rub onto any affected areas of skin. Allow the garlic juices to remain on the skin for 15 or 20 minutes before rinsing.


Lemons have natural astringent and antibacterial properties to help clear skin pores and eliminate breakouts. The acidity will help harden the sebum. Simply apply few drops of lemon juice, or rub a slice of lemon on the affected zones and allow to dry for between 15 minutes to an hour before rinsing. Some people find this quite drying so only use every two or three days.

Or try mixing equal amounts of lemon juice with rose water for a great skin wash which can be used daily.


Protein rich egg whites make an ideal skin cleansing face mask. They naturally draw out any impurities and minimize the open pores as well as reducing the excess oil produced by troubled skin.

Separate from the egg yolk and apply with a cotton ball directly to the skin and leave for a minimum of ten minutes. You will feel it dry and tighten after just a few minutes. Remove with warm water to reveal a cleansed and glowing complexion.


Cornstarch is particularly effective if you suffer a lot of redness and irritation as it is gentle and soothing.
Apply to affected zones or even to you entire face. For maximum effect leave on overnight and see the difference the next morning.


Papaya is a common ingredient in many beauty products on the market today, owing to its’ anti-inflammatory qualities. Plain raw papaya is an acne remedy that removes dead skin cells and excess lipids from the surface of the skin, leaving it soft and smooth. Papaya also contains an enzyme called papain, which not only eases the inflammation but helps prevent the pus from forming.

Apply freshly mashed papaya pulp to your face and leave for 15 to 20 minutes. Rinse with warm water. If your skin has a tendency to get dry after you cleanse it, try mixing with some coconut oil (see above).

You are what you eat. Many foods are beneficial for our skin when we eat them. Be sure to include some of these in your regular diet, choosing organic where possible: fish oil, turmeric, green tea, nuts, berries (dark red and purple), green leafy vegetables and omega 3-eggs.
Limit your intake of sugar and processed carbohydrates and drink plenty of water.

Please share this information with others if you think people could benefit from this natural health information.


Alcohol's Effect On The Body: 5 Majors Organs That Are Being Destroyed By Your Alcohol Consumption

Friday, August 15, 2014 | comments

Alcohol's Effect On The Body: 5 Majors Organs That Are Being Destroyed By Your Alcohol Consumption


When consumed responsibly and in moderation, alcohol can be enjoyed without repercussions. Unfortunately, when drinking becomes a problem the effects can be disastrous for the health of the human body. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, the immediate effects of alcohol including an increase in blood alcohol concentration can begin 10 minutes after your first sip. However, it’s the long term effects alcohol can have on the body that you should be more worried about. Research suggests that excessive alcohol consumption can lead to a variety of different cancers including mouth, esophagus, throat, liver, and breast. It can also cause severe damage to almost all of the body’s major organs.

1. Heart

We’re all familiar with recent studies that attribute the antioxidants found in a single glass of red wine to a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, but what happens when the single glass turns into a bottle? Over time, excessive alcohol consumption begins to weaken the heart muscle resulting in blood flow irregularities. Alcoholics and binge drinkers are often plagued by a condition known as cardiomyopathy where the heart stretches and droops. People diagnosed with cardiomyopathy caused by alcohol tend to experience shortness of breath, arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat), fatigue, enlarged liver, and a persistent cough. Alcohol can also increase the risk of a heart attack, stroke, and hypertension.

2. Brain

Beyond that initial feeling of euphoria, alcohol can have a detrimental effect on the brain. By slowing the relay of information between neurotransmitters, the ethanol found in alcoholic drinks can cause damage to multiple areas of the brain. Prolonged damage to the brain’s neurotransmitters can result in behavioral and mood changes such as depression, anxiety, memory loss, and seizures. Alcoholism combined with poor nutrition can also trigger Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome, “Wet Brain.” Alcoholics with “Wet Brain” experience a form of depression characterized by memory loss, confusion, hallucinations, loss of muscle coordination, and an inability to form new memories.

Alcohol's Effect On The Body: 5 Majors Organs That Are Being Destroyed By Your Alcohol Consumption

3. Liver

We tend to underscore the importance of the human liver, however, many alcoholics can tell you with certainty just how important liver function really is. Our livers are essential when it comes to proper food digestion, nutrient absorption, controlling infections, and ridding the body of toxins. There are over two million people in the U.S. who suffer from liver disease caused by excessive alcohol consumption. Liver cirrhosis ranked as the 12th leading cause of death among Americans in 2009. Out of the 31,522 deaths reported that year, 48.2 percent were considered alcohol related. Around one out every three liver transplants in the U.S. is the result of liver disease caused by alcohol consumption.

4. Pancreas

A lot like the brain, large amounts of alcohol can confuse the pancreas causing it to secret enzymes internally instead of sending them to the small intestines. The buildup of enzymes in the pancreas will eventually cause inflammation. This inflammation, also known as pancreatitis, can either occur as a sudden attack (acute pancreatitis) that includes symptoms such as abdominal pain, nausea or vomiting, increase heart rate, diarrhea, and fever or chronic pancreatitis which slowly deteriorates the pancreas, leading to diabetes and even death.

5. Kidneys

The effect alcohol has on the liver can also spread to the kidneys. Due to the diuretic effect alcohol has on increasing the amount of urine the body produces, the kidneys are not able to do their job of regulating the flow and makeup of body fluids including the distribution of sodium, potassium, and chloride ions. This can in turn disturb our balance of electrolytes. Excessive alcohol consumption can also lead to high blood pressure, the second leading cause of kidney failure.



Colgate Total Toothpaste Has Triclosan, A Cancer-Linked Ingredient — And Nobody Knew Until Now

Thursday, August 14, 2014 | comments

Colgate Total Toothpaste Has Triclosan, A Cancer-Linked Ingredient — And Nobody Knew Until Now

Millions of Americans are putting it in their mouths every day, by way of a top-selling toothpaste that uses the antibacterial chemical to head off gum disease — Colgate’s Total, Bloomberg noted.
Total is safe, Colgate says, citing the rigorous FDA process that led to the toothpaste’s 1997 approval as an over-the-counter drug.

A closer look at that application process, however, reveals that some of the scientific findings Colgate put forward to establish triclosan’s safety in toothpaste weren’t black and white — and weren’t, until this year, available to the public, Bloomberg said.

The toothpaste uses triclosan to help prevent gum disease, but controversy over the antibacterial chemical has manyconsumer companies phasing it out and regulators reviewing if it’s safe to put in soap.

Colgate Total Toothpaste Has Triclosan, A Cancer-Linked Ingredient — And Nobody Knew Until Now

The Bloomberg report noted that Minnesota voted in May 2014 to ban the chemical in many products.

Colgate Total was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 1997 as an over-the-counter drug, but some of the scientific findings in the application report were withheld from the public until recently.

The FDA application included 35 pages detailing toxicology studies on triclosan, including studies showing fetal bone malformations in mice and rats. 

The best part about this? The FDA didn’t released the 35-page toxicology summary of Colgate Total and triclosan until early 2014, following a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed in 2013. After some pressing from Bloomberg News, the FDA also published the findings on its website.

“In the nearly 18 years that Colgate Total has been on the market in the U.S., there has been no signal of a safety issue from adverse-event reports,” Colgate spokesman Thomas DiPiazza told Bloomberg. .

The 35-page report provides a fascinating look beyond the Colgate Total label. In it, you’ll find that the FDA was wary about certain Colgate claims, not only regarding the potential hazards of triclosan, but also that it can treat gingivitis — which the FDA points out isn’t self-diagnosable — and eradicate plaque.

Colgate Total Toothpaste Has Triclosan, A Cancer-Linked Ingredient — And Nobody Knew Until Now

But as Bloomberg News points out, one of the biggest reveals is the fact that Colgate dismissed the triclosan experiments done on animals, calling them unnecessary:

Among the pages were studies showing fetal bone malformations in mice and rats. Colgate said the findings weren’t relevant. Viewed through the prism of today’s science, such malformations look more like a signal that triclosan is disrupting the endocrine system and throwing off hormonal functioning, according to the three scientists.

Included in Colgate’s FDA application along with these experiment on animals was a study the company did on children and adults in the 1990s to prove triclosan was safe to human exposure in small, or proper, doses:

The applicant has adequately assessed the absorption of triclosan from an exaggerated dosing scheme. The resulting exposure level is well above that recommended by the FDA carcinogenicity advisory committee.

So, should we be worried? Well, the FDA says on its website that triclosan is “not known” to be dangerous to humans, but emphasis on the “not known” part. Although testing in animals doesn’t always lead to the same effects in humans, these previous animal experiments have prompted the FDA to open up further research on triclosan. However, both the FDA and EPA stress that triclosan products such as soaps and toothpastes are currently safe to use.
Colgate Total Toothpaste Has Triclosan, A Cancer-Linked Ingredient — And Nobody Knew Until Now

From the EPA, which conducted its own triclosan assessment in 2008:
The Agency determined that, with the exception of preservative use of triclosan in paints and stains, pesticides containing triclosan met the statutory safety standard in FIFRA, provided that risk mitigation measures as outlined in the RED were implemented, confirmatory data gaps were addressed, and label amendments were incorporated as presented in the RED document. Subsequent to the issuance of the RED, the registrant of triclosan products for use in paints and stains voluntarily requested cancellation of the registration of products for these uses.
However, scientists say that it’s not uncommon — or wrong — to second guess these common chemicals, especially since we’re exposed to thousands of chemicals every day. “We have created a system where we are testing these chemicals out on the human population. I love the idea they are all safe,” UMass Amherst Professor Thomas Zoeller told Bloomberg News. “But when we have studies on animals that suggest otherwise, I think we’re taking a huge risk.”

 Read the full report from Bloomberg here.


The Dangers of Over Washing: Can You be Too Clean?

Wednesday, August 13, 2014 | comments

The Dangers of Over Washing: Can You be Too Clean?

We all know that good hygiene is crucial to good health – if we do not clean our hands, bodies and homes, we invite all sorts of pathogens to multiply, which could easily lead to serious illness. However, some of us take it too far.

Constantly washing our hands, showering multiple times per day, sanitizing surfaces with antibacterial cleaners and making sure everything is spotless are not uncommon habits. Many public places these days have dispensers of antibacterial gel readily displayed in convenient dispensers, so we can quickly disinfect at all times.

Is our obsession with cleanliness actually healthy, or could it actually be causing harm?

A new study published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology found that babies who had been exposed to common allergens such as pet dander and roach allergens, as well as common household bacteria, before the age of one were less likely to develop wheezing, asthma and allergies, compared to children that had not been exposed to these substances before age one.

According to the CDC, asthma affects approximately 7 million US children, and is one of the most common childhood illnesses.

The researchers also found that if a child was initially exposed to common allergens and household bacteria after the age of one, protective benefits against asthma and allergies were not observed. Study author Dr. Robert Wood of the Johns Hopkins Children’s Center states:

“Our study shows that the timing of initial exposure may be critical. What this tells us is that not only are many of our immune responses shaped in the first year of life, but also that certain bacteria and allergens play an important role in stimulating and training the immune system to behave a certain way.”

This is not the first study to find that getting dirty may help to prevent the development of asthma and allergies in children. A 2012 study, also published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, found that Amish children raised on farms had lower rates of asthma and allergies than their peers. Researchers hypothesized that this was due to their repeated exposure to the microorganisms found in farm soil.

Our immune systems learn from experience. When we encounter specific germs, especially at a young age, our immune systems become trained to distinguish between benign and dangerous substances, and learn to respond accordingly.

Dr. Samuel Friedlander, an allergist at University Hospitals Case Medical Center, says: “I believe that the immune system is like an army… if the army doesn’t have something to fight like microbes, it’s going to fight things like allergens in many cases. People [who] live on farms are exposed to more microbes and as a result the immune system tries to fight those bugs and then, in turn, the body doesn’t have to fight allergens.”

While this immune-training effect of dirt and germ exposure is especially pronounced in childhood, some research has found that it may be possible even for adults to “reset” their immune systems through exposure to certain microorganisms. This highlights the body’s amazing ability to learn and adapt in order to protect itself; what doesn’t kill us really can make us stronger.

Washing your hands and body too often is also detrimental in that it removes our skin’s natural layer of healthy oils, which function to defend the body against microscopic invaders. If you are washing your hands to the point where they crack, for example, it gives germs a gateway to easily enter your body.

The Dangers of Over Washing: Can You be Too Clean?

Antibacterial soaps – the worst offenders

While over-washing with regular soap is bad enough, many of us lather up daily with antibacterial soaps and scrubs, and clean our homes with antibacterial cleaning agents. The principal ingredient in these products is a chemical known as triclosan, which was originally introduced as a pesticide in the 1960s, and is still used in pesticide applications today.

Along with its pesticide function, triclosan appears in about 75 percent of all soaps, toothpastes and deodorants sold in the US. The dangers of this chemical are becoming more widely known; it is linked to estrogen disruption, has been associated with encouraging an earlier onset of puberty, and can accumulate in fat tissues. It has been found in human blood, breast milk and urine samples.

When triclosan comes in contact with chlorine, such as from chlorinated tap water, it forms chloroform gas, which is classified by the EPA as a “probable human carcinogen.” It is also hazardous to the environment, as it has been found to accumulate in lake sediment.

Perhaps the most pronounced danger of triclosan, however, is that it is thought by many experts to be contributing to antibiotic resistant pathogens. For all of these reasons, the manufacture and commerce of products containing this substance was banned earlier this summer in Minnesota. This important ban will hopefully set a precedent for other states.

To add insult to injury, studies have found that just plain soap and water is as effective at preventing communicable illnesses as antibacterial soap.

Leading health expert Dr. Joseph Mercola aptly summarizes: “While disinfectants are extremely useful in a hospital setting, they can do far more harm than good when used on a daily basis in your home.”

The Dangers of Over Washing: Can You be Too Clean?
Keep it clean – but not too clean

Washing our hands with soap and water when needed – after using the restroom, blowing your nose, after cooking and before eating, for example – and practicing good personal hygiene are important. Too much cleanliness, however, can be detrimental to your immune system. Use common sense and remember not to go overboard.

Toss the antibacterial hand gel and antibacterial household products, and instead wash with a mild, organic soap, and consider switching to natural cleaners for use around your home, which besides triclosan contain an array of potentially harmful chemicals.

To enjoy the best protection against disease possible, gear your lifestyle towards building and maintaining a strong immune system. Eat a diet of whole, nutritious foods, including probiotic foods like yogurt, kefir and sauerkraut, get plenty of exercise – out in the sunshine and fresh air as often as you can – manage your stress levels, and get plenty of good sleep at night. A healthy lifestyle will give your body the best chance to overcome whatever pathogens come your way.

Bottom line: let the kids play in the dirt, and don’t forget to play in the dirt yourself!

Studies Show that Invisible Wifi Frequencies May be Contributing to Chronic Health Conditions

Tuesday, August 12, 2014 | comments

Studies Show that Invisible Wifi Frequencies May be Contributing to Chronic Health Conditions

It seems like everywhere you go these days, you can pick up a wireless signal. Long gone are the days of dial up – free WiFi is everywhere and has made internet use a modern convenience that practically no one can live without.

While it’s a luxury to be able to check email or update a Facebook status while we wait in line at the grocery store or are in the process of eating dinner at a restaurant, is constant internet availability really a necessity?

 Worse yet, can it be dangerous for our health?

WiFi was introduced in 1997, and was considered a real luxury only the most tech-savvy could enjoy. The rest of us were locked to our desktops and a dial-up connection. Soon to follow were the plethora of wireless devices and accessories such as keyboards, scanners, printers and more that all could be accessed via WiFi. Today, many households’ television sets, security systems and even baby monitors are all managed via a WiFi connection.However, these invisible frequencies that have all but eliminated those unsightly cords and offer convenience at the flick of a switch may be a key contributor to many of our nation’s health problems.

Copious amounts of studies have been performed regarding the importance of sleep. Many note that poor or erratic sleep patterns often lead to numerous chronic illnesses. A 2007 study looked at the effects of even low doses of electromagnetic signals from low frequency items such as WiFi.

Studies Show that Invisible Wifi Frequencies May be Contributing to Chronic Health Conditions

Results indicated that even at very low frequencies, exposure to these signals affected individuals from both falling asleep and remaining asleep throughout the night. These findings indicate that over time, WiFi and other electromagnetic signals can indirectly lead to chronic health problems.

Yet even if you are a sound sleeper, WiFi frequencies may be doing more damage than you realize, especially if you plan on starting a family one day. A 2004 animal study found that kidney development in rats was delayed when exposed to electromagnetic frequencies.

Studies Show that Invisible Wifi Frequencies May be Contributing to Chronic Health Conditions

Further, WiFi frequencies have specifically been associated with reduced sperm mobility. The Karloski Institute in Sweden released a statement in 2011 cautioning pregnant women to avoid overexposure to these frequencies, and criticized the United States and Canada for their lax standards for radiation regulation. The institute further indicated that current regulations ignore the effects on developing fetuses and young children.

While many may shudder at the idea of giving up their precious WiFi-enabled gadgets, there are plenty of alternatives we can use to help shield ourselves from the overabundance of electromagnetic radiation.

First, protect yourself from the inside out by eating a diet rich in blood-boosting foods such as beets, since blood cells are often affected by radiation. Also, incorporate plenty of organic fruits and vegetables. These are full of antioxidants and other phytonutrients that help detoxify the body and combat the stresses induced by radiation.

Studies Show that Invisible Wifi Frequencies May be Contributing to Chronic Health Conditions

Limiting exposure can be difficult, but it’s not impossible.

First, shut off wireless routers when you’re not using them, especially at night or during sleeping hours. Second, don’t opt for wireless accessories like keyboards or printers, which all utilize WiFi connection. You can also avoid WiFi use altogether by utilizing an ethernet connection. Be sure to purchase a quality cable, however, as poorly constructed cables can emit radiation as well.

Finally, if you’re looking to limit exposure outside of the home, avoid coffee shops and bookstores where free WiFi is a given. You can determine how many wireless networks are in range by checking how many pop up on your cell phone. If more than four or five are available, you may want to enjoy your latte elsewhere.


8 Amazing Health Benefits Of Pineapple

Monday, August 11, 2014 | comments

8 Amazing Health Benefits Of Pineapple

Pineapples are second only to bananas as America’s favorite tropical fruit. They have a whole range of health benefits. Here are some of the reasons why we should include pineapples in our diets.

Pineapples are native to South America and are exceptionally juicy with a vibrant tropical flavor that balances the tastes of sweet and tart. One cup (165 grams) provides 100% of the RDI of Vitamin C and is also a good source of manganese and a vital enzyme known as bromelain. In addition it contains copper, vitamin B1, vitamin B6, dietary fiber, folate, and pantothenic acid.

Here are some of the health benefits of pineapple. Buy organic wherever possible.


Pineapple is very high in vitamin C. Vitamin C is an immuno-stimulant, anti-inflammatory, antiviraland antibacterial and is essential in treating different types of diseases related to the immune system and chronic inflammation (i).


In addition to the Vitamin C pineapples have high levels of the enzyme bromelain. This is a digestive enzyme which breaks down proteins and is found in pineapple juice and in the pineapple stem so it is also a useful digestive aid for some people do not make enough digestive enzymes naturally. The anti-inflammatory properties can be used to treat swelling of the nose and sinuses following surgery or injury. It can also used for hay fever, treating inflammatory bowel conditions and ulcers (ulcerative colitis), as well as removing dead and damaged tissue after a burn (ii).


Studies have shown that bromelain may help keep platelets in the blood from sticking together, which in turn may help prevent blood clots. If this is the case, it may also promote bleeding in some people and should be avoided by those prone to prolonged bleeding.

8 Amazing Health Benefits Of Pineapple


Manganese is essential for bone health. It helps to reduce the loss of bone density which can lead to osteporosis, which in turn can lead to bone fractures (iii). A 100 gram serving of pineapple provides 44% of the RDI of manganese.


Research suggests that bromelain might help reduce joint swelling in rheumatoid arthritis and reduce mild acute knee pain in osteoarthritis. It is thought that this is the effect of bromelain combined with flavenoids rutin and trypsin.


Research published earlier this year has shown that bromelain has chemopreventative action when tested on colorectal cancer cells (iv). The scientists involved concluded that “bromelain-containing foods and/or bromelain itself may represent good candidates for colorectal cancer chemoprevention”.

Numerous scientific papers have reported the anti-cancer effects of bromelain in cell and animal studies: For example a 2012 study in the peer-reviewed Journal Of Medicinal Foodfound that bromelain induced apoptosis (killing of cancer cells) in breast cancer (v).
A 2013 study in the peer-reviewed Cancer Investigation detailed how bromelain may have the potential of being developed into an effective anticancer agent for malignant peritoneal mesothelioma (MPM) which is cancer of the lining of the abdomen (vi).


Pineapples contain very low levels of potassium making them a nutritious and hydrating juice for patients suffering from chronic kidney disease.


The whole pineapple plant has been used for many years in traditional herbal remedies as a diuretic, to speed up labor, as well as for treating sore throats and seasickness. Native people in Panama have used the juice from pineapples leaves as a laxative and to treat intestinal worms.

Note – If you suffer from anaemia you should limit pineapple intake as manganese has been found to inhibit iron absorption.


Why You Shouldn’t Crack Your Knuckles (or Neck): A Chiropractor Explains

Sunday, August 10, 2014 | comments

By Nick Meyer

Lately I’ve been feeling a little bit, well, creakier than usual.

It’s probably because I’ve been spending a little too much time working, hunched over at my desk, but at the same time, I’ve also noticed that while I’ve been cracking my hands, knuckles and neck quite a bit, the problem hasn’t been getting much better.

I’ve started supplementing with turmeric and MSM capsules and also recently got a massage using avocado oil, and while both have helped, a lot of the creakiness has still remained.

Since then I’ve gone back to cracking my hands quite a bit, mostly because of how good it feels. But is cracking our hands and neck really a solution to our problems or just a stopgap measure that makes us feel good in the short term?

Chiropractor Dr. JaDean Anderson explains in the video below why cracking these areas may be symptomatic of a larger problem, and why you should avoid doing it:



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