Friday, March 20, 2009

By Melissa Breyer, Senior Editor, Care2
Given poor government regulation, many of the cleaning products available on the market contain “everyday” carcinogens such as formaldehyde, nitrobenzene, methylene chloride, and napthelene, as well as reproductive toxins and hormone disruptors. Not to mention other ingredients that cause liver, kidney and brain damage, allergies and asthma. I really am a happy person–not your basic Eeyore type, but toxic cleaning products seriously get my goat. One of the best things you can do to detox your home is to create one of Annie’s simple non-toxic cleaning kits to use–most of the ingredients you probably already have on hand.

But there are a host of products, other than those used for basic cleaning, that often contain carcinogenics. This list, from Cancer: 101 Solutions to a Preventable Epidemic (New Society Publishers, 2007) by Liz Armstrong et al, cautions against 10 household products, in addition to cleaners, that you should avoid having in your house.

1. Air fresheners: Often contain napthelene and formaldehyde. Try zeolite or natural fragrances from essential oils.
2. Art supplies: Epoxy and rubber cement glues, acrylic paints and solvents, and permanent markers often contain carcinogens.

3. Automotive supplies: Most are toxic. Keep them safely away from the house and dispose of at a hazardous waste disposal center.
4. Candles: Avoid artificially scented paraffin candles that produce combustion by-products, including soot. Beeswax only, with cotton wicks.
5. Carpet and upholstery shampoos: Use only wet-clean, natural ingredients.

6. Dry-cleaning: Choose clothes that don’t need perchlorethylene to clean them. Ask for the wet-cleaning option at you local cleaners, or seek dry-cleaners that use liquid C02 or citrus juice cleaners.

7. Flea, tick and lice control: Avoid lindane-based pesticides.
8. Paints and varnishes: Always chose low- or no-VOC finishes.
9. Household pesticides: Go natural.
10. Microwaves: Never microwave or heat food in a plastic container.

I know this list sounds daunting, but there are small changes we can make now to prevent the growth of cancer cells! Remember, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Bottoms Up!

Just this year, the world's second biggest pharmaceutical company, GlaxoSmithKline, paid $720 million to buy Sirtris Pharmaceuticals Inc., a company that is developing drugs that mimic the effects of resveratrol. What then is so special about resveratrol?

Twenty years ago, a remarkable group of naturally occurring compounds known as phytoalexins was discovered. Phytoalexins are natural antibiotics that are produced by plants that are under attack by bacteria or fungi, and are capable of killing or inactivating the invading organism with amazing efficiency. They therefore function as orchestrators of a kind of biochemical immune system within the plant kingdom: as part of the response to bacterial or fungal invasion, infected plants release hormones that can prompt as yet uninfected neighboring plants to begin producing phytoalexins of their own as a sort of proactive defense.

The ability of phytoalexins to inhibit cell division and to arrest the growth of invading organisms quickly caught the attention of cancer researchers. One phytoalexin in particular, resveratrol, has become the focus of a great deal of research attention. Resveratrol, a phytoalexin found in the skin of red grapes (that's how it finds its way into red wine), has been shown to possess marked anti-cancer activity in addition to a wide range of other beneficial physiological effects, including the capacity to lower blood sugar, and an ability to extend the lifespan of certain experimental animals.

Because of its association with red grapes and red wine, it has been suggested that resveratrol may be the "magic ingredient" responsible for the fact that people who regularly drink modest amounts of red wine tend to have a lower incidence of cardiovascular disease - the so-called "French Paradox."

Resveratrol exhibits an anti-inflammatory effect. It is a potent antioxidant, inhibiting free radical formation and preventing genetic mutations that can lead to tumor formation. Together, its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-mutagenic properties, coupled with the fact that it has a very low toxicity, make it highly promising as a potential weapon against cancer.

I am not suggesting that teetotalers take up the alcohol habit in order to avail themselves of the benefits of this compound. Alcohol has too many potential downsides, including the possibility of addiction, to recommend it. But, if you are an adult in reasonably good health and already drink wine, then may I suggest that you cultivate a taste for Pinot Noir (the wine that was celebrated in the movie, Sideways.) That way, you will not only enjoy yourself but get a more-than-usual dose of resveratrol.

(N.B. Those who prefer to get their resveratrol without the accompanying alcohol can purchase resveratrol capsules that will provide an equivalent benefit.)

Friday, March 6, 2009

Here is the web address for the Environmental Working Group. This is a really comprehensive web site that has a ton of information from smart shopping guides to new legislation on toxins and other health and environmental issues! I realize that it would be impossible to completely iradicate toxic chemicals from our lives... but if we can save one child, one family, the pain of a serious illness by making efforts to remove ONE component of toxic invasion from our "habitat," isn't that enough?

Thursday, March 5, 2009

For Our Children

I just watched this amazing video... it actually made me cry. Please, for you and your children, and for anyone you know who has or might have children in the future, PLEASE WATCH this video!

Monday, March 2, 2009


At our church we have a time for members to share their "joys and sorrows" with their church family. During this time, two different people shared that they had a friend or relative recently diagnosed with cancer... and these were children. One high school aged youth and one even younger. It truly brought a sense of sadness to everyone sitting there yesterday morning.

It turned my mind to all of the things I know about the causes of cancer... espeically how 80% of cancer cases are linked to environmental factors! Sure, we all know about the second-hand smoke, exposure to asbestos, etc. But we are not always thinking about the every day things we do to keep ourselves and our families "safe and healthy" that may actually be weakening our defenses against such a deadly diagnosis.

My friend Judy has a history of breast cancer in her family. Her mother and aunt both died of breast cancer. So when her doctor told her that it was amost positive that she would follow the same path, that she should just watch and wait and continue to come in for checkups, she wasn't satisfied. She wanted to be pro-active about this... wasn't there any way she could prevent the cancer from invading her body?

She went through extensive testing at the University of Michigan Hospital's Breast Cancer division. When she was finally through, she asked her specialist "What can I do RIGHT NOW, when I go home, to try to change my fate?" Her response was, "Go home and throw away every cleaner in your house. Throw away most of your personal care products, too." Although it wasn't going to change her genetics, it would relieve the constant attack on her immune system. That way her defenses would be healthy and ready to combat the cancer if it ever arrived... not to mention many of those cleaners contain possible carcinogens themselves.

It has been over a decade since Judy stripped her home of toxins, and started on a suppliment regime, and she has been cancer-free and healthier than she has ever been. Her children haven't been to the doctor for any kind of illness in six years, have never needed an antibiotic, and most importanty, Judy herself is there for her children.

Just thought I would pass this along for ALL of you, but especially for those who have cancer in the family.

I urge you all to google search "cancer and home toxins" and I'm sure you will find an abundance of information to support these statements.

Be Well,

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Natural Success

Just want to pass on a success story to you... When I was growing up I had warts. Large, nasty warts all over my hands. I had to go in every week to get one hand full of them frozen off, alternating hands each week so I could function. Ugh! Painful and horrible.

Then, when my daughter was three she got a large wart on her finger by the nail. I took her to our doctor, who gave me the option of doing a "natural" treament using beatlejuice. Yes, real juice from a beatle. She said it was painless. And it was, when she dabbed it on. after a day or two with the tape on her finger, things got funky. I noticed a smell, and found that it looked like all the flesh on her finger was dying and falling away. It hurt and smelled. The wart fell off, but it took several weeks and was very painful.

So when I discovered two warts on my son, I freaked a little. I did not want him to go through either agony. I tried every over-the-counter wart remover: the drops, the pads, and finally the at home freeze thing. Nothing took the warts away... until I tried Melaleuca oil. I joined this buying club, and the product they were founded on was oil of melaleuca. I got a wellness guide that tells you all about the ways to use the different products. This oil is used to remove warts, among hundreds of other things.

I put the oil on my sons warts two or three times a day (no pain, nothing). And in a little over two weeks his warts had just shrunk and disappeared completely!!! I have since used this on a cyst and it worked just as well!!! The oil is non-toxic and killer of unhealthy bacteria and germs, and is extremely low cost (plus I saved all that money on medical co-pays). So, before you freeze or juice, I would highly recommend checking into this method!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Danger of Oven Cleaner

I picked up my neighbor yesterday to take her on an errand, and she told me that she got a bad burn at work. My neighbor is in housekeeping and works at a large banquet hall. When I asked her how she got burned, she said she was cleaning the oven, and the OVEN CLEANER burned through her pants to burn her skin! It was not a small burn, either!

When I looked up the ingredients in oven cleaner, is saw this main ingredient: monoethanolamine. So I looked up the safety data sheet.

Carcinogenicity - NTP: NO
Carcinogenicity - IARC: NO
Carcinogenicity - OSHA: NO
Signs/Symptoms Of Overexp: SEE HEALTH HAZARDS SECTION.

Then I found another news story where a small child died within 24 hours of ingesting a small quantity of oven cleaner! I don't know, these don't look like risks that are worth a quick and easy oven cleaning... My can of Eazy-off is now in the trash!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

"Sick and Tired"

Indeed, these two words go together easily! Fatigue is one factor that wears down your immune system, but it's not the only factor. Here's a little "diagram" that is going to show you how your system works, how it can break down, and how it could be healthier!
Everyone carries a toxic load. I know, sounds uncomfortable. But in our society, it's inevitable. The good news is that there are some things we can change. We have things like nasty toxic cleaners being absorbed every day by the largest organ in our body (our skin). We have stress from all sorts of things, we don't get enough sleep because we stay up late to watch "The Daily Show." :) We slather ourselves with nasty personal care products and makeup that is full of junk that could kill a lab rat. Our "wholesome" frozen family sized lasagna is full of MSG. We are breathing in our industrialized nation, and "oops," junior brought a cold home from school! Yikes, our bodies can't handle this load. Call in the EPA, we're gonna have an emission!
If only we could just puff this junk out of us! Unfortunately, we just wear down and get sick. Our immune system is working its pants off and can't handle one more responsibility. So, how do we train our eager IS to work more efficiently? We give it the tools it needs, and we lighten it's workload. The first and easiest thing to do is to replace all of the nasty toxic household products with healthier, natural ones that do just as good a job or better. I know, some folks use vinegar or baking soda to do all the cleaning, but I personally don't like the smell... and those products aren't going to kill all of the bacteria that a scientifically formulated, natural cleaning product containing high grade ingredients like oil of melaleuca will kill. (If you want to know where I get my great and inexpensive cleaning products, send me an email to )
Okay, so now we've lightened the workload, let's give ourselves some tools. The tools are things that are working from the inside out... vitamins, minerals, foods, water, etc. Did you know that the quality of our food as far as it's vitamin and mineral content is dropping drastically? So even if you are eating local organic fruits and vegetables, you are unable to get the nutrition you need from your foods alone. In fact, in 2002 the American Medical Association stated that everyone must suppliment to maintain their health. Those vitamins are going to give your body the strength it needs to tackle the tough jobs.
But, there are so many vitamins out there! I mean, seriously, whole stores commited to vitamins and nutritional suppliments alone! Well, I just asked someone who knew! The vitamins I buy for me and my family have a patent-pending formula that allows the vitamins and minerals to absorb directly into the bloodstream from within the small intestine. They have actually been proven by third-party laboratory testing to absorb over 50% more of the nutrients than even the most expensive store brand. And those one-a-day vitamins aren't going to be very helpful, as they have extremely poor absorption. Here's a test... take one of those vitamins and put it in a glass of apple cider vinegar (same PH as your stomach). Let it sit for 24 hours and chances are that it will still be there! What good are the nutrients if you are just pooping them out!!! But maybe that's better anyway, because most of those are made of completely synthetic vitamins and minerals. Mmmm, mmm, good! But seriously, why not give yourself what you deserve to stay healthy?
Okay, so I have to go make some home-made chicken soup now, but if you have questions about any of this, just send me an e-mail to, or post a comment here! I try to get to this every day.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Our Immune System

The first thing I want to tell you, friend, is that your body is strong. Contrary to popular belief, you are fully capable of fighting off germs and viruses without the help of 24 Hour Cough Medicine or Night Night Juice, or any of the barrage of "helpful medicines" marketed at the "sick and tired of being sick and tired."

Your body is a fortress equipped to destroy and eliminate poisonous "intruders." As you know, there are many things that occur naturally in our environment that are toxic to our systems, so we must have defenses against them. Our livers and kidneys filter out toxins and our T-cells conquer foreign invaders. But what happens when your troops are exhausted? They can't fight the enemy, and your body gets contaminated. How did your troops get so tired? You opened the door and let the enemy in...

There are over 150 toxic chemicals in our homes. They are in our cosmetics, our dishwashing detergent, our laundry soap and baby shampoo. They are in our tile cleaner and wood floor polish. They are in our underarm deoderant and our nail polish. And guess what? We PAID to put them there!

Did you know you paid for the formadehyde in your baby shampoo? Guess what? This ingredient is a "Suspected carcinogen. May be fatal if inhaled, swallowed, or absorbed through skin; causes burns; inhalation can cause spasms, edema (fluid buildup) of the larynx and bronchi, and chemical pneumonitis; extremely destructive to tissue of the mucous membrane." (Material Safety Data Sheet- Formaldehyde) I know, there is such a small amount in the shampoo, it can't be harmful. Perhaps not... But when there is a little in the shampoo, a little in the conditioner, some more in your lotion, your dish soap, and your laundry soap... now it's worth paying attention!

So, here's what happens in a nut shell: Your awesome immune system works like mad to fight off all these toxins that we are slathering, soaking, swallowing and spraying all over our bodies, then a virus comes along. BAM, we are done. We are aching and coughing and we run to the drug store to fill our bodies with more chemicals. Ugh! Wow, is this depressing!

No, this is going to be okay! I am here to tell you there are safe and cheap alternatives to bombarding our immune system every day! Whew! Seriously. I have been using alternative products for most of my adult life, and stomaching the cost of them. But I have found a buying club that is totally cost-effective and gets the toxins out of my life.

Why am I so adamant about this? I know five people that have recently survived cancer. Did you know that the average American has a cancer cell in their body SIX TIMES in their life? For many people, their army of defenses is able to conquer them six times. However, if your immune system is spending it's energy fighting off a whole host of other things, guess who is going to win? I am not willing to take that risk. Not when I can get that crap out of my house, replace it with natural beauty products and cleaners that kill more bacteria than bleach (but can be ingested with virutally no consequence), and have more money in my pocket at the end of the day! It's worth it for me, my husband, and my children... and it's worth it for you, too.

Keep watching my blog for more information about home toxins and fighting diseases and disorders from the "inside-out" as well.

In Good Health,