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Archive for the ‘Health & Safety’ Category

Natural Honey Health Benefits

Jan 25, 2010 Author: Jessy | Filed under: Health & Safety

Honey is not only tasty treat on your toast, it also has many health benefits for you and your family. Even if some of these uses are not scientifically proven as medical cures, some people swear by them and honey can’t hurt you. You should be looking for Raw Honey, not the purified, distilled variety you can buy in a honeybee squeeze container. Raw honey can be found from a local honey producer or health food store. I love the taste of honey and these are some of the uses I have found it useful for.

You can use honey as an antiseptic or antibacterial agent- If you have a cut put some raw honey on it to produce an antiseptic action and you can apply it to pretty much anywhere on your body. Some lab studies show it can be used on antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria so toss some in your first aid kit to protect you and your children with honey’s natural antiseptic properties or if you can’t find your triple antibiotic ointment or are hesitant to use it, whip out the honey!

You can use it as a natural face moisturizer- Try this recipe- 1 egg yolk, 2 tablespoons raw honey, mix together apply to your face and neck avoiding eyes, leave on for 10 minutes and rinse off with warm water.

You can use it as a natural acne cure- put a small of raw honey dab on a pimple, cover with gauze and wake up to a clear face.

You can use it as an immune system boost- Try mixing a teaspoon in your morning coffee or morning water and it possibly strengthens your immune system, even if it does not help boost your immune system the sugar content will help wake you up!

Treat your sore throat naturally- a teaspoon of the juice from a lemon mixed with a a teaspoon of honey and swallow it or mix it with 6 oz of hot water and drink it as a tea.

You can use it to help with anxiety treatment- add honey to your oatmeal in the morning and it may produce a calming effect when taken in significant amounts, try mixing it in your warm water before bedtime to relax you.

Instead of trying over the counter medicines to keep you healthy and worrying about the side effects, sometimes natural remedies are the safest and best. Try honey!

In my younger days I was carefree and laid back. I only had to answer to myself and chose to live my life to the fullest. We traveled regularly and I took any opportunity to go on vacation. After I turned 18 but before I had my daughter, I took 8 trips to Mexico, 7 trips to Florida, 5 trips to Vegas, 5 trips to Arizona, and I tanned on all of them. When you live in Minnesota and you don’t get to feel the warmth of the sun on your face for months, you get pretty excited to feel Mr. Golden Sun. Feel the sun I definitely did! I always wore sunscreen, yep a whole whopping SPF4. I felt pretty good about myself since some of my vacation buddies wore no sunscreen or just plain tanning oil.

Tanning on vacation was not the extent of it, you had to prep to go on vacation which meant tanning sessions, I convinced myself I was using the high power beds with lower UVB Rays and I was protecting myself from getting burnt on vacation and helping me to fit in with the locals. Honestly, most of the locals were not as tan as I was when I arrived, but there were the few tan ones. Tan ones like the woman I met in Arizona that had spent a full two weeks in the sunshine and laying in the pool from sun up to sundown working on her tan. She was white woman who ended up the color of milk chocolate, yes I envied her at the time, thankfully I never was able to match that tan.

I wish it was as simple as only tanning on those trips and in preparation for those trips. I also fully enjoyed every possible minute outdoors in the Minnesota sunshine. Believe it or not, but Minnesotans can get a mean tan in the summertime. Maybe it has to do with sitting by the dark water of our land of 10,000 lakes that helps bring on the tan, or sitting out on our lovely lush green lawns, but whatever it is, I learned very well that my skin can brown with the best of them!

I gave myself every excuse in the book as to why I could continue to tan. Some of my excuses were, I have extra melanin that makes me tan due to my dark complexion and have never had a serious sunburn so I wont get skin cancer. We have so little sun year round that we need to stock up on Vitamin D in the summertime so I can’t apply too much sunscreen. We only have 4 good tanning months so in comparison to people who live in the south where they can tan year round, I will be safe. Whatever my excuse, I wish I would not have made them.

Now I am 33 years old and I am starting to develop wrinkles. I have to see a dermatologist annually to get mole checks and get moles removed, which is not a glamorous experience. I feel guilty when I get sun now, I wear hormone free SPF 20 on my face every single day even in the winter. In the summer I apply suntan lotion with sunscreen after my showers so I have some protection in case I am outside without sunscreen. I want to lead by example for my children, not just by how I keep them protected from the sun.

Why do I wish I could go back in time? Do I have skin cancer? Not yet. Because of Wrinkles? Not really, I am not that vain. But instead because If I could have possibly convinced the younger me to be more careful I would save myself the discomfort of getting moles removed, save myself the humiliation of having to make excuses to my dermatologist, saved myself from developing hundreds of small moles and freckles all over my skin and irreparable sun damage. I wish I could take back the 100 plus trips to the tanning salon, now that research has found that it is much more damaging than actual sun exposure. Do I want to swear off sun and come back from vacations pale? Absolutely not, but I am going to do everything in my power to never have sore shoulders from too much sun exposure in the future. I will never use SPF 4 again, I am going to use SPF 15-30 now, I simply can’t bring myself to use SPF 50 yet.

I will hopefully pass on a healthy respect of the sun to my children who currently don’t get to go outside in the summertime without being slathered with hormone free SPF 50 sunscreen. They may be the palest kids on the beach, but that is OK. I am sure they will make mistakes and get sunburns when it is their choice to do so, but maybe in the back of their head they will think about applying sunscreen after the shower like mom did, and maybe if I am really lucky, they wont want to turn back time when they are 33.

Safe Plastics

Oct 27, 2009 Author: Jessy | Filed under: Health & Safety

Safe vs. Unsafe Plastics

If you are like me, you want to do everything you can to keep your children healthy and safe.  One of the dangerous things right now is hormones and chemicals in plastics.  I wanted to know how I could protect my children from plastics and find what plastics are safest I did some research.  In our society it is almost impossible to avoid using plastics.  Sure I could only give my children glass and metal but I really don’t want to clean up broken glass regularly from my floors.  Here are some things to look for in plastics and things to avoid to keep your family safe from hormones and chemicals in plastics.

Even with safe plastics you should not  heat food in the plastic containers in the microwave as it changes the chemical composition and may leak chemicals into your food.  Only heat food in glass or ceramic containers in the microwave. Just because a plastic container is labeled as microwave safe does not mean that they will not release chemicals into your food when cooked.

Avoid polycarbonate bottles and sippy cups, look on the bottom of any plastic container and avoid anything with the number #7  plastic products and products made from PVC/Vinyl or #3 plastics. Thankfully Polycarbonate has been made illegal in sippy cups and bottles being sold in Minnesota but if you use older bottles or sippy cups you may run into polycarbonate.  I recycled all of my polycarbonate bottles as soon as I found out that synthetic estrogen leaks into your childs food and beverages when you use polycarbonate.  There are new versions of hard clear plastic that are made from corn and do not contain hormones but unless you know exactly what to look for please be careful.

For storing and serving food and beverages use #1,#2,#4,# 5 and avoid #3 #6 and #7 plastics. Don’t throw away unsafe plastics, please recycle them!

Instead of buying bottled water from the store and filling up landfills with empty bottles and bottle caps, use a water filter and a reusable bottle for water.  Invest in an aluminum reusable bottle like the Thermos Foogo Leak-Proof Straw Bottle to avoid any hormones leaking.  For my children I invested in the Thermos metal canisters bottle for their juice and water.  The Thermos brand containers stay cold for hours so not only do they save money they keep your beverages tasting good.

Stay healthy and pick safe plastics.

Nosefrida- A Safe Nasal Aspirator

Oct 27, 2009 Author: Jessy | Filed under: Health & Safety, Product Reviews

NoseFrida Nasal Aspirator

With cold and flu season here and if you have a baby and don’t have a NoseFrida Nasal Aspirator you need one.  The first time your small baby gets a cold and you have to try to figure out the horrible invention of the nasal bulb sucker you will realize why this is such an important invention.

A traditional bulb nasal aspirator can damage the soft tissues of the nose.  You don’t know how hard you are sucking and you have to be extra careful not to accidentally blow air into their noses which can be very dangerous.   Now you have this bulb nasal aspirator full of bacteria and virus contaminated filled snot, how do you know it is clean between uses?

My husband ordered me a Nosfrida and told me that it looked weird but his friend from work swore it was the greatest invention for babies.  I was totally grossed out by the idea, why would I put my mouth anywhere near my child’s mucus?   It made me gag just to think about it.  I stuck it gently into my poor sick newborns nose, and put the other end into my mouth and crossed my fingers.  Even with the filter in place I was afraid I would accidentally ingest some snot but there is no way that could happen now that I used it.  I sucked gently and my baby did not flinch, I quickly realized how to suck the  It was amazing, I was able to control how hard I sucked and was able to clear my babies sinuses so that he could breathe in order to nurse. I knew it was gentle enough to use because he did not cry when I sucked his nose clear like he did with the bulb aspirator, and he just laid calmly and allowed me to clean his nose.

The suction in the NoseFrida Nasal Aspirator is completely controlled by you, I find it is most helpful to do long soft suction to clear the back of the nasal passages,  it is not a short, sharp suck like a bulb sucker that just gets small amounts of snot but can never clear the sinuses behind the  nose.  You would not believe how much mucus you can remove.  To me that difference in mucus removed is the difference between a sleeping baby and one who is up coughing and choking on mucus all night.

To clean it you simply take the end off the tube end, wash it out with hot tap water, use a qtip to loosen any crusties,  dry it with a paper towel, replace the filter, I tend to wash the mouth piece with alcohol in case I am not the next one to use it and put it back in the holding case.  I love that you can see it is perfectly clean unlike a bulb sucker, even with the bulb suckers that can be cleaned can have hiding spots that you cant access that could lead to a bacteria breeding ground.

It was a life saver when my little guy was a newborn, I even still use it when my toddler has colds, he is not the best at blowing his nose yet, he still does that mouth blowing thing into the Kleenex to make the Kleenex move and make the sound like he is blowing his nose.  So I hold down his head and suck out the snot so that he can breathe.  I would refer it to any of my friends, in fact I have bought it for many of them for baby shower gifts. It truly is a life saver, it has made what could have been many sleepless sick nights, sleep-able!

Simple Ways to Prevent Illness and the Flu.

Oct 13, 2009 Author: Jessy | Filed under: Health & Safety

Dr. Vinay Goyal, MBBS, DRM, DNB,  gives the following suggestions to keep you healthy and avoid illnesses and H1N1.

1. Frequent hand washing

2. Hands off the face approach, resist all temptations to touch any part of face.

3. Gargle twice a day with warm salt water or use Listerine if you don’t like salt water.

4. Clean your nostrils at least once every day with warm salt water by using a Neti Pot or blowing the nose hard once a day and swabbing both nostrils with cotton buds dipped in warm salt water.   Neti pots and sinus rinse kits are available at drug stores.

5.  Boost your natural immunity with foods that are rich in Vitamin C like citrus fruits. If you have to supplement with Vitamin C tablets, make sure that it also has Zinc to boost absorption.

6. Drink as much of warm liquids like tea and coffee as you can.  Drinking warm liquids has the same effect as gargling, but they wash viruses from the throat into the stomach where they cannot survive.

This information was given to me in an e-mail forward that I thought made sense and was worth passing on.

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