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beauty

70 articles in beauty

Get A Radiant Body

Get A Radiant Body

How do you feel about your body? Is it a source of pleasure and pride? A burden to be borne? A matter of indifference? Does it feel like a ‘good runner' which always seems to do what you ask of it? Or is your body something on which you don’t think you can depend? I find that most men and women in the Western world feel uneasy about their bodies. The cultural models which our culture has inherited from the ancient Greeks separates ‘body’—our physical presence—from ‘soul', the so-called ‘real' person, creating a schizoid attitude towards ourselves. Often we treat the body as an object. Then we alternate between narcissistically indulging it and continually neglecting it. Sometimes, we seem to dissociate from it altogether. QUANTUM RADIANCE NOW The body is the medium through which we experience reality. This is a truth most people forget. Your sense of aliveness and vitality, peace and relaxation, joy, sexuality, power—even intellectual enjoyment—are all experienced through your physical body. The more vital it is, the more intense are your sensibilities, and the richer your experience of being alive. The right treatments carried out on the surface of the body using simple substances such as water, oils, clays—even doing dry skin brushing—profoundly influence your state of wellbeing, both mentally and physically. Some techniques improve lymphatic drainage, clearing away wastes stored in the system. Others pep you up when you're tired, or relax you when you're stressed. They contribute to an experience of quantum wellbeing. The body is a finely-tuned instrument. It becomes more sensitive and stronger as you use it. The radiant body feels comfortably in tune with the earth on which it stands, yet free to move, to dance, to feel, and to experience joy and pain fully. This is what being fully alive is all about, no matter what your age. Ideally, the body should always have been this way. A child born naturally, without trauma or drugs, who enters a safe and welcoming world and has a good bond with its mother already has such a body. It moves fluidly, experiences emotions and physical sensations deeply. This makes it fully expressive both in shape and movements of the innate essence of the unique being. Sadly, for most of us, our natural aliveness and bodily freedom have become distorted or truncated. Traumas which we experience tighten muscles, damping down our sensory input. Some people find themselves oppressed and overwhelmed by living in a world which is anything but life-nurturing. This is a not-uncommon feeling for children and young adults. All of these experiences which are felt through the body leave their ‘scars' since they are held in the tissues. Then, instead of maintaining the sensitivity and responsiveness which is our birthright, the body gradually becomes ‘deadened’. This deadness can express itself in many ways—from rigidity or strange postural attitudes and gaits to flaccidity, muscles which seem lifeless and lackluster skin, even low self-esteem, depression, and a sense of impossibility about one’s life. BODY MAGIC The most remarkable gift of the human body is its natural plasticity. It is more than capable of transforming itself. Unlike a machine, your body is continually in flux. It changes its shape and ways of functioning from day to day and moment to moment. It can collect poisons in the tissues which decrease vitality and promote illness, and it can easily be encouraged to eliminate these poisons, becoming more alive, strong and beautiful. This in turn improves your whole way of experiencing life. You can work with a twisted, strained body, or one without a great capacity for feeling physical pleasure. Gradually, over a period of months, you can help it reclaim its ‘aliveness' and its natural good looks. There are a number of simple but powerful techniques for bringing this about. Regular exercise is one. So is the Alexander Technique. Yoga too can be useful—if it is practised well. And there are other professional disciplines which can help, like the bio-energetic therapies, touch for health, and Rolfing or structural integration. There are also many wonderfully effective practices which you can do for yourself day-to-day to help reawaken vitality, improving the way you look and feel. They can alter the way you move, as well as the way you feel about yourself and your life. For, when your body feels more alive, more responsive and stronger, so do you. DO IT YOURSELF The healing of our culturally inherited mind-body split is a slow but totally necessary process, in order to achieve the kind of integration which makes quantum wellness possible. Many of the techniques useful for bringing it about—such as the clay and sea-plant treatments, massage, water therapy, breathing exercises—can be a lot of fun and leave you feeling great when you use them, as well as the long lasting benefits each promises. Also, making time in your life to practice them can be an excellent method of de-stressing, allowing you to get away from any leaning towards becoming an `automaton'—a tendency we all have to some degree— and become more conscious of who in essence you really are, and where you are going. This is an important part of a quantum way of life. TAKE THE PLUNGE A simple thing like water, which you come in contact with every day, is ideal for beginning transformation and heightening vitality. Applications of hot and cold water used to be a standard therapy for aches and pains and for revitalizing. We know this thanks to the pioneering work of Father Sebastian Kneipp, the Bavarian parish priest who strengthened his own less-than-hearty health with the healing powers of water, and then went on to develop a whole system of treatment using it to dissolve toxic wastes while strengthening the entire organism. Many of Kneipp's techniques—which I wrote at length about a few weeks ago—are great for bringing you more vitality and a growing experience of aliveness. He insisted that the easiest way of ‘hardening and bracing the system' is to walk barefoot—on wet grass or stones, on freshly fallen snow, or in cold water up to your knees. This may sound strange to someone who has never tried it, but it can be enormously invigorating—even on winter mornings. I do it at some time every day, come rain or shine. I learned of its power from doctor friends who use it to increase a patient's resistance to illness with excellent results. The secret is to spend only a few minutes (from 3-5) walking barefoot in this way, making sure that you keep shoes and socks dry, so you can put them on immediately afterwards. If they too are allowed to get damp you miss out on the stimulating effect of the contact with the cold dampness. This can deplete your body of energy instead of revitalizing and strengthening it. This, by the way, is the secret for using any cold water applications on the body. You must be warm to begin with and you must keep warm and dry afterwards. Contact with cold water under these circumstances first causes constriction of the blood vessels, momentarily driving the blood inwards. Then, the moment it is stopped, the blood rushes to the surface of the skin, warming it. BRUSH FOR BLISS The same principles apply to hot and cold showers or cold sitz baths. One of the best possible ways of waking up each morning and getting yourself going for the day ahead is to brush your dry skin down well with a dry hemp glove or a natural vegetable bristle bath brush. Then step into a warm shower. As soon as the warmth of the water has suffused your body so you are warm and comfortable, switch from `warm' to `cold'. Remain under cold water for only half a minute (no more), making sure that your body all over gets covered with the cold spray. Emerge from the shower, dry yourself briskly and dress warmly. It is important that the bathroom is always warm and that you begin very slowly with only, say, 10 seconds of cold water at first, gradually increasing it to half a minute as you become used to it. I think you will be surprised at how quickly this adaptation takes place. It will make your body feel alive and tingling, increase your stamina and, according to the European doctors who still use it regularly with their patients, heighten your resistance to colds and flu. SITZ BATHS FOR SLEEP Here’s a variation on the cold water theme that will surprise you. A cold sitz bath is one of the best ways of relaxing quickly and preparing your body and mind for sleep. It is another technique the effectiveness of which you won't believe until you have tried it several times yourself. It is a great blessing for people who suffer from insomnia because their minds race and they can't turn off mental energy when they go to bed. Here's how: Fill a bath with 3"-4" of cold water from the tap. Make sure the bathroom is warm and that you have done all of the things you need to do before retiring. Wrap the top half of your body in a sweater or dressing gown which you can tuck up so that when you sit in the water it won't get wet but it will keep the upper part of your body warm. Now immerse your hips and bottom in the tub for 30 seconds. You can do this either by letting your legs hang over the side of the tub or by sitting in the bath and allowing your heels to go into the water to steady your body. Get out, dry yourself well, then climb into bed. The technique draws the body energy away from the head and brings a marvellous sense of peace and relaxation. Next week we’ll look at more simple do-it-yourself techniques for quantum radiance, such as the health-enbhancing magnesium chloride flakes and gifts from the sea. See you then...

Your Silent Sea

Your Silent Sea

There are five main channels for detoxifying your body: the skin, the lungs, the kidneys, the bowels and the lymphatic system. None is less less recognized, nor more important in spring-cleaning the body, than your lymphatic system. Yet the state of its health and functioning is still almost completely ignored. Your lymphatics are not only a major route for absorbing vital nutrients from the digestive system into the tissues to keep skin healthy, youthful and glowing—they are important carriers of immune cells. These protect your body from damage and illness and help prevent degenerative aging. Lymphatics are also your body's metabolic-waste-disposal system. They take away unwanted proteins and large particles of toxic debris which cannot be removed by any other means. This includes toxins—the by-products of fatigue and of stress—dead cells, fatty globules, pathogenic bacteria, heavy metals, infectious viruses and other assorted rubbish cast off by your cells. WASTE DISPOSAL So essential are the waste-eliminating functions of the lymphatic system that without them you would die within 24 hours. Doctors working with natural methods of healing insist that a primary cause of fatigue, disease and cell degeneration, with its accompanying premature aging, is poor circulation of lymph to and from the cells and tissues of the body. The same tradition of natural medicine uses a number of effective techniques designed to stimulate lymphatic functions as a means of healing even quite serious illnesses— ranging from rheumatism or cardiovascular disease to chronic fatigue. These techniques include exercise (done for the joy of it, not as a chore), skin-brushing, special breathing techniques, and infra red saunas. All of these things improve the purity and quality of the lymph—the clear fluid which flows through the lymphatics (lymph vessels). They are little short of revolutionary in what they can do for your good looks and your good health. They have even been known to clear long-standing skin troubles such as acne, improve the look of puffy or aging skin, heighten vitality, banish muscle and joint pain, and aid in the regeneration of the body as a whole. Making use of these techniques is simple. But first you need to know a little about how the lymphatic system functions, and just how important a role its mysterious mechanisms play in promoting health and beauty. WHITE BLOOD MAGIC Your body is more than 75 per cent water. So important is water to the processes of life itself that, according to Nobel Laureate Albert Szent-Gyorgyi, “Life is water dancing to the tune of solids”. A French biologist rather poetically emphasized Szent-Gyorgyi's observation by saying: 'Man is an amphibian. Even the most beautiful woman's body is no more than an aquarium with 50 liters of lukewarm seawater in which trillions of cells live and fight for survival.' Five liters of this 'seawater' are to be found in your blood, five in digestive and other secretions, and almost all the rest is in your lymphatic fluid or lymph—sometimes called 'white blood'. Thanks to the lymph, a ceaseless interchange goes on between your body's trillions of cells and their surrounding interstitial fluids, so that food and oxygen are exchanged and waste products are eliminated from the cells—all through the medium of water. For cells and tissues to be nourished, for them to remain vital, and for your skin and muscles to remain smooth and healthy and firm, this interchange needs to occur without impedance, and the water itself needs to be relatively uncontaminated. BEAUTIFUL FLUID In your body, nutrients and oxygen are transported to the tissues and cells via the bloodstream. Arterial pressure forces the blood through tiny capillaries and out into the cells' interstitial spaces to enable the nutrients and oxygen to be exchanged for the wastes which the cells have produced. Here the water or interstitial fluid, now filled with toxic waste, is gathered by tiny lymphatic tubules and then sent back through the lymph vessels to be detoxified. These lymphatics are a highly organized and elaborate system of ducts and channels which flow all over your body. In fact, almost all the tissues of the body are equipped with lymph channels which drain excess fluid, and the wastes which it contains, from the interstitial spaces. This opalescent liquid carries the wastes and toxic products from these minute channels into larger lymphatic vessels, and on through the lymph nodes, which are located in the groin and under the arm and the neck. The lymph nodes filter the fluid to remove impurities and dead cells; they are also a place where antibodies, which fight infection or toxins, are made. After purification at the nodes, the fluid is returned to the blood. In this way, the lymphatic system works ceaselessly to clear toxicity and to reduce excess mucus and waste. GRAVITY IS YOUR FRIEND The microscopic network of these lymph channels resembles the blood capillaries, except that it is finer. And the lymph system in many ways is rather like the blood system except that, while the blood system is powered by the action of the heart muscles, the lymphatic system has no such prime mover. Instead, its nourishing, water-balancing and eliminative functions are almost entirely dependent upon gravity and the natural pressure of muscles which occurs when you move your body. These muscle contractions and body movements—together with biochemical factors, such as whether or not excessive quantities of protein are present in the fluid—keep the lymph flowing and make it possible for the lymphatics to carry out their important task of bodily cleansing. For good lymphatic functioning—to keep your body free of the buildup of wastes and toxicity—you need to move your muscles vigorously and often. That is why regular brisk exercise, such as taking long walks in comfortable shoes, is so important not only to firm your muscles and strengthen your heart and lungs, but also to encourage the steady and effective elimination of wastes from your cells and tissues.

The Magic Foods for Hair

The Magic Foods for Hair

Ask Any Cat Talk to a vet about the poor condition of your pet's coat and you will get the same answer - change his diet or give him supplemental vitamins and minerals, or both. They know well that the strength, gloss and beauty of an animal's coat depend on how close his diet comes to providing, not just adequate, but optimal quantities of essential nutrients. It has taken until quite recently for trichologists and doctors to realize that a similar approach to the treatment of human hair can yield the same remarkable improvements. They've started asking, for instance, `What might be done to stop the kind of changes that happen to hair as the body ages?' And they have begun to formulate nutritional approaches to a lot of other annoying hair problems such as dry brittle hair and dandruff. The Magic Foods for Hair Two foods are of enormous help to hair in protecting it from age-related changes: liver and sea vegetables. Liver is rich in vitamin A - essential for healthy skin and for the proper functioning of the scalp's sebaceous glands. It also contains a good quantity of many of the B-complex vitamins which help guard your hair from premature loss of color and preserve its sheen and strength plus many of the essential minerals which are needed to maintain a full shining head of hair. Sea vegetables - seaweed of all varieties - are the single most potent strengthener of hair (and incidentally nails) you can find in nature. They are veritable treasure houses of essential minerals, including organic iodine as well as the B vitamins, and vitamins D, E and K. You can buy many kinds of dried seaweed to use in vegetable dishes, soups and curries. You can't find a better helper for hair anywhere. Alternatively you can buy kelp tablets to take with each meal. If you opt for the tablets it is important to take enough, since they are not drugs or even concentrated pills, but simply a dried vegetable product. Most people find that 4-6 300 mg tablets with each meal brings enormous benefits to the look and strength of hair within six to twelve weeks. Like all nutritionally based approaches to good looks, kelp tablets take time to work their wonders. Remember it may have taken years for a body to become depleted in essential minerals which shows itself in poor hair condition, a few weeks to restore it to a healthy balance is not long to wait. Cysteine for Hair Protein Hair is 97 percent protein which your body makes out of amino acids, eight of which are essential - they must come from the foods you eat. One of these amino-acids - cysteine - is of particular importance to hair. It can be made in the body from another amino acid - methionine. But this conversion takes two vitamins - folic acid and B12 - both of which are not always in good supply, particularly among people who have lived on the typical western fare. Some dermatologists and nutritionists find that giving the single amino-acid cysteine in its free form (that is not part of a long chain protein molecule) to people that have thin hair or hair in poor condition can make it strong and thicker and more lustrous within a few weeks. Cysteine occurs naturally in good supply in eggs. In supplementary form it should always be taken with vitamin C in a ratio of one part cysteine to at least three times as much vitamin C. Stress and Hair Loss Alopecia areata marked by circular bald or thinning spots on the head of women and men can be the result of acute extreme stress. It is said to be particularly common in women who have trouble expressing anger and who have a tendency to depression. It can be treated internally by a diet high in the anti-stress vitamins, vitamin C and the B-complex vitamins, and by learning a technique for deep relaxation and practicing it regularly. Externally it is treated by rubbing phenol, minoxidil or dinitrechlorobenzene (DTB) on the scalp. Other causes of hair loss include a hyperactive or sluggish thyroid, infection with a high fever, surgery, anemia, iron deficiency, crash dieting and excessive massive doses of vitamin A.

Know The Real Aphrodisiacs

Know The Real Aphrodisiacs

These days we treat aphrodisiacs as folk fantasy. Don’t be deceived. The biochemistry of certain plants like ginseng, dang quai, fennel and wild yam, as well as certain essential oils, are known to bring powerful sexual regeneration to the body and to intensify libido. It is your own individual response to specific herbs that is the key to aphrodisiacs. Loss of libido or impotence can have many different causes. So when turning to herbs for help in the sexual arena, you may need to experiment a bit to find which plants work best for you. But watch out. It is not only easy to create an experience of intense desire; it can be just as easy for a woman to end up fertilized by the results of it. Wings Of Desire Sexual impotence or a loss of ability to maintain a full erection affects most men at some time in their lives. It can be a result of feeling unwelcome, afraid of one’s own power, or experiencing a sense of inadequacy or depression in your life. Such things reflect themselves in the behavior of the body. With real awareness of how each partner feels and with patience and consideration, psychologically-caused impotence will often clear by itself. But many difficulties with maintaining erection are biochemical in nature. In men over the age of 35, it can happen during periods of prolonged stress, after illness, or simply as a result of having lived for too long on convenience foods, so that your body has become depleted in essential minerals, trace elements and vitamins—so that some of its metabolic processes no longer work properly. The first step is to detoxify your body by doing an herbal cleanse. Then change the way you live. Eliminate processed foods. Eat lots of fresh vegetables and clean sources of protein such as fish, organic meats and poultry as well as eggs, or only organic tofu made from soya beans that have not been genetically engineered. It is important, too, to throw out margarine and all highly processed oils. Replace them with extra virgin olive oil, organic coconut oil and good old butter from grass-fed cows. Include a teaspoon of top quality omega 3 fish oil each day. This is important. For, if you do not have a good supply of these essential fatty acids, you will not produce the hormones necessary for sexual potency. Male Potency There are a several useful plants for enhancing sexual energy and intensifying erection: Ginkgo biloba not only boosts the flow of blood to the brain and enhances memory; it can also increase circulation to the penis, potentizing iffy erections. The best way to take it for this purpose is in the form of a concentrated 24% standardized extract capsule, once or twice a day. Do not take more, since in large quantities, gingko can cause loose bowels, nervousness and irritability. One research project gave men 80 milligrams of such an extract three times a day, and got good results. It not only cleared impotence, it also lifted the depression which often accompanies it. You can also use a ginkgo tincture: 1 teaspoon in a little water twice a day. Fava beans—Vicia faba—can have an astounding effect on erection. The first written record of this food having sexual connotations came from ancient Rome, where Cicero used it to heighten his own passion. Fava is the best natural source of L-dopa. This chemical (which is also used to treat Parkinson’s disease) intensifies erections in some men. That is how fava got its reputation as an aphrodisiac. One way to use fava is to make soup from them. Siberian ginseng—Eleuthrococcus senticosus—is a natural MAO inhibitor. It helps lift depression and improves libido in both men and women. It also helps overcome long-term fatigue. You can take it as an extract daily. Its effects build slowly over weeks and months. This adaptogen is an excellent restorative for the whole body. Women In Love When libido flags in women there are many herbs that can help revive it. Wild Yam—Dioscorea villosa—restores libido so successfully in most women that I would not advise you to use it unless you have a sexual partner. You can take the tincture—½ -1 teaspoon in water twice a day—or as a dried herb in capsules, 4-6 capsules a day. I have known women to take 10 capsules a day, but less than this works very well for most. American Ginseng—Panax ginseng—is as good a raiser of libido in women as it is in men, despite the assumption that it is a male plant. It is particularly useful in post-menopausal women. Drink it as a tea three or four times a day. Fennel—Foeniculum vulgare—is replete with plant steroids. In animal experiments it raises the libido of both males and females. You can take it as a tea. Bruise a teaspoon of fennel seeds and pour 2 cups of boiling water over them. Steep for 5 minutes, strain and drink. Caution: Do not use fennel oil on your body when you are pregnant, as it can cause miscarriage. Other simple herbs which you can add to your foods that have a reputation for enhancing libido are parsley, fenugreek—great to sprout and eat in salads—ginger, and anis (Pimpinella anisum). Even coca from which chocolate is made carries mild aphrodisiac power. Essential oils help with libido on the night. Massage your body and that of your partner with a carrier oil such as sweet almond oil or apricot oil to which you have added one of the aphrodisiac essences: clary sage, ylang ylang, rose, or jasmine. This is for external use only. Powerful stuff—you need only 1 drop of an essential oil to each teaspoon of carrier oil. A capsule of vitamin E squeezed into the oil when you mix it helps keep it fresh longer. Here are some products you might find useful: Carlson Labs, The Very Finest Fish Oil, Lemon The finest of fish oils from deep, cold ocean-water fish. Bottled in Norway it has a refreshing natural lemon taste. Take by the teaspoonful, mix with foods, even try it on salads. This product is regularly tested (using AOAC international protocols) for freshness, potency and purity by an independent, FDA registered laboratory and has shown itself to be fresh, fully-potent and free of detrimental levels of mercury, cadmium, lead, PCB's and 28 other contaminants. Buy Carlson Labs, The Very Finest Fish Oil, Lemon Now Foods, Ginkgo Biloba NOW Ginkgo Biloba is grown and extracted under the highest quality standards and is standardized to min. 24% Ginkgoflavonglycosides and min. 6% Terpene Lactones, including Ginkgolide B, the most significant fraction, and Ginkgolides A, C and Bilobalide. Order Now Foods, Ginkgo Biloba from iherb Now Foods, Ginkgo Biloba Extract Supports Cognitive Function 24% Standardized Extract With Gotu Kola and Eleuthero GMP Quality Assured A Dietary Supplement Vegetarian Formula Order Now Foods, Ginkgo Biloba Extract from iherb Bob's Red Mill, Fava Beans For over 5,000 years, Fava Beans have been enjoyed as a delicious source of protein, fiber and iron. Similar in taste and texture to lima beans, they are one of the most flavorful and meaty beans around. Bob's Red Mill Fava Beans have been naturally blanched to remove the unsavory skins. They're excellent for soups, dips, and a wide variety of other dishes. Order Bob's Red Mill, Fava Beans from iherb Dragon Herbs, Siberian Ginseng, Super Potency Extract This is a potent formula, made from the finest Chinese herbs, to enhance your adaptability and daily Qi. Order Dragon Herbs, Siberian Ginseng Extract from iherb Herb Pharm, Wild Yam To assure optimal extraction of Wild Yam's bioactive compounds, the rhizomes are hand-harvested only in late autumn, are carefully shade-dried and are then thoroughly extracted. Our Wild Yam is never fumigated or irradiated. Order Herb Pharm, Wild Yam from iherb Nature's Way, Wild Yam, Root Capsules Health & longevity through the healing power of nature—that's what it means to Trust the Leaf. Wild Yam (Dioscorea villosa) was historically offered as "colic root" and used in herbal remedies for gastrointestinal irritations. In recent years it has become popular for women's health. Our Wild Yam is carefully grown, tested and produced to certified quality standards. Order Nature's Way, Wild Yam, Root Capsules from iherb Triple Leaf Tea, American Ginseng, Caffeine-Free American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius) has long been a popular herb. Modern research confirms both American and Asian ginsengs contain ginsenosides and supports their long history of use. American ginseng is considered less yang than Asian ginseng (Panax ginseng). For this reason, Chinese herbalists valued American ginseng for regular long-term use. Native Americans in North America first used this herb in similar ways to Chinese herbalists. In the 18th century, it became popular in America, and began being exported to China. Today, a large amount of the American ginseng grown in North America is exported to a large amount of the American ginseng is exported to Asia. 100% pure American ginseng root sets this tea apart from other ginseng tea blends, creating a delicious tea with the maximum amount of this marvelous root. Order Triple Leaf Tea, American Ginseng, Caffeine-Free from iherb Frontier Natural Products, Organic Whole Fennel Seed A graceful plant, fennel is an aromatic, hardy, perennial with golden yellow flowers and feathery leaves. Also known as garden fennel, this plant's botanical name, Foeniculum vulgare, comes from the Latin for "fragrant hay", it is a member of the Apiaceae family--along with anise, caraway, coriander and dill. Fennel seeds are small, oval, and grooved. They resemble caraway seed (though less curved) and smell and have a lemony anise taste. Fennel was well known as a food, flavoring and medicine in ancient China, Greece, India and Egypt. Since Roman times it has been used as a diet aid and to overcome hunger during fasts. In fact, its early Greek name, marathron, comes from maraino, which meant "to grow thin." The Roman emperor Charlemagne popularized the use of fennel seed in Central Europe, and the ancient Saxons included the seed in their list of nine sacred herbs used to combat the nine causes of disease. Order Frontier Natural Products, Organic Whole Fennel Seed from iherb ORDERING FROM IHERB.COM: If you decide to order any products from Iherb.com, you will automatically receive $5 or $10 off your first order. Their products are the cheapest and best in the world…I use them for everything no matter where I am. Get it sent to you via DHL. It will be with you in three to four working days… iHerb.com ship all over the world very cheaply.

Hair Works

Hair Works

When your body is in homeostasis (that is, all is functioning well) and it is receiving the nutrients it needs and making good use of them, then your hair is strong and beautiful. When something goes wrong inside, your hair is one of the first things to show it. This is one of the many mysteries about hair. In fact, it should not be so. For hair, like fingernails, is dead. Only the follicle from which each hair grows is a living thing. And while it is understandable that hair loss can result from a systemic condition since the follicles would naturally be affected by illness as would any other part of the body, there is no apparent reason why dead hair should look so different from one day to the next, depending on how you feel. Yet it is so. Each hair on your head is 97 percent protein in the form of keratin and 3 percent moisture. It also contains traces of metals and mineral substances in about the same proportions as the rest of you. Although there is still a great deal that is not understood about hair, there is a lot more that we do know. In fact, when it comes to external hair care, cosmetic technology is at its very best. In the past fifteen years, excellent products have been developed to deal successfully with hair that is too frizzy, too thin, too greasy, too dry, or damaged. There are also things to protect your hair from the ravages of the sun's ultraviolet rays and some excellent coloring products. what's it all about? Each hair on your head is made beneath the surface of your skin in a little bulbous structure called a follicle. There, a clump of cells called the papilla at the base of the follicle produces the keratinous cells that become a strand of hair. The papillae get good supplies of food and oxygen since they are well furnished with blood vessels, on which the growth and health of every hair depends. When, for any reason, circulation to your scalp is decreased or interfered with, the papillae get fewer nutrients and less oxygen than they need and your hair suffers. The function of a follicle is to produce keratin, just as your pancreas produces insulin or your stomach hydrochloric acid. The follicle also contains an oil gland, which produces oil to coat each hair and to protect it from water loss. How efficient and how well it does this depends on a number of things such as the level of androgenic and oestrogenic hormones in your system, your genetic inheritance, and your general health. You are born with more than 90,000 follicles. This number doesn't change. If the amount of hair on your head changes, it is because some or most of these follicles are not working properly or have shut down, not because they disappear or because you don't have enough. the three layers of a hair Each strand of hair, or hair shaft, can be divided into three basic layers: the outside, which is called the cuticle; the medulla at the center; and the cortex, made up of complicated amino-acid chains, in between. The cuticle serves as your hair's protective coating: It guards against excessive evaporation of water (just as the stratum corneum does for your skin). It is made up of a transparent, hard keratin formation that is itself layered. These layers overlap, like the tiles on a roof or fish scales. When they lie flat and smooth against the hair shaft, the hair shaft refracts light beautifully and your hair looks shiny. When they are peeling or damaged or raised, each hair doesn't catch the light, so your hair lacks sheen and looks flat and dull. The cuticle provides 35 percent of your hair's elastic strength. The threadlike cortex, just beneath the cuticle, contains the pigment granules, which give your hair its color. The cortex is softer than the cuticle, yet it provides 65 percent of the hair's elastic strength. It is also the thickest part of the hair. If the amino acid chains that make up the cortex break up as a result of too harsh treatment from hair dyes, dryers, highly alkaline shampoos, or over processing, then you end up with weak and brittle hair that splits easily and breaks off. The most common manifestation of poor cortex condition is the familiar split ends. The hair shaft's innermost layer, the medulla, is made up of very soft keratin, and in many people there is even a hollow center. It appears to transport nutrients and gases to the other layers of the hair and may be the means by which your hair is so rapidly affected by changes in your body's condition. But as yet not a great deal is understood about the biological functions of the medulla. the three-stage cycle of growth Hair follicles are the most efficient metabolizers of any organs in the body. This is what makes hair growth possible. They and the hairs they produce function on a three-part growth cycle that lasts from two to seven years. It is important to understand this growth cycle, because understanding it can dispel many of the fears women have that something is wrong when they look at their hairbrush and discover a number of hairs in it. Hair loss is continuous and is a normal part of the cycle. Without it there would be no new hair growth. During the first part of a hair's growth cycle - called the anagen phase - the papilla proliferates keratin at a rapid rate as the follicle expands and imbeds itself deeply in the vascular scalp to provide the oxygen and nourishment needed for growth. During this anagen phase, which lasts between two and six years (depending on your genetic makeup, general health, and the hormone balance in your body), your hair continues to grow from the follicle very much as toothpaste is squeezed out of a tube. The anagen phase is longer when you are young than at the age of fifty or sixty, but no matter what your age, eventually it has to come to an end to make ready for the next phase: the transitional catagen stage, which lasts only a few weeks. During catagen, the follicle's metabolism slows down, the follicle contracts, and the papilla's production of keratin stops. This is not a sign that something has gone wrong but, rather, that the growth of that particular hair has run its course. It is ready to be shed, so soon it enters the last, or telogen, phase of the cycle. Now the follicle rests in its contracted state - rather like an animal hibernating - until, in about three months, the hair it contains is physically dislodged from it by normal activity such as combing or washing. The loss of this hair triggers the follicle to enlarge again, and it heads back into the anagen phase, where it produces yet another hair. And so the cycle continues throughout your life. At any one time, about 85 percent of your hairs will be in the anagen phase and the rest in either telogen or catagen. Luckily, each hair begins life separately, at a different time from the others, or one could end up bald for three months every two to six years. As it is, your hair tends to be shed relatively rapidly in the autumn as more of the follicles head into the telogen stage, and to grow rapidly in the summer.

Epsom Salts Baths

Epsom Salts Baths

Our energy is balanced between dynamic, outpouring energy—which is exciting, creative, fun and challenging—and inner, moving energy, which is receptive. It’s a kind of quiet expectance that allows the universe to give you the gifts that it has to give. And of course, we can’t receive those gifts unless we know how to move from the dynamic state into the real receptive one. One of the things that’s important in helping us learn to do this—and almost everybody I know needs to learn to do it in our hectic, overstressed, dynamic world—is using water. Water itself is a powerful energy balancer. For instance, when you apply hot and cold water alternately to the surface of your skin, this stimulates circulation through the cardiovascular system, and it also spurs really good lymphatic drainage. From an electromagnetic point of view, by stimulating these systems you are increasing electricity at the heart of your cells, heightening your body’s ability to produce energy at a cellular level and to produce vitality in your life. Hydrotherapy works in other ways too. Like a really good way of eating, high in fresh green vegetables and low or no processed and convenience foods, water helps detoxify acid wastes which are interfering with normal energetic processes. An excellent technique that works fantastically well is Epsom salts baths. They are magical in the way they can help you to balance your energies, not only on a physical level, but emotionally. Epsom salts are magnesium sulphate. Both magnesium and sulphate molecules have an ability to leach excess sodium, phosphorous and nitrogenous wastes from the body. By reducing toxicity, your body’s energy becomes freed up for more efficient use. Magnesium and sulphur are also some of the most alkalinizing earth minerals. In practical terms, what this means is that they have the ability to create more physical space between the atoms and the molecules of your body. The greater the acidity in the body, and the more compressed the molecular space becomes, the greater the physical and emotional pressure you feel. When you get into an Epsom salts bath, the magnesium sulphate disturbs the pressure in your body, dispersing it and helping to restore balance. Magnesium sulphate dissolved in a body of water creates an electrical unified field. When you put your body into this field, it removes any excess electrical discharge from one area of the body and sends it to areas which are undercharged, creating a magnetic balance. There is nothing quite as good as an Epsom salts bath when you have been on a long flight or if you are suffering from jetlag, emotional tension, great fatigue or upset.

Secret Weapons For Ageless Skin

Secret Weapons For Ageless Skin

The question I am most often asked is, “How do you keep your skin looking so good at the age of 74?” My answer is simple. I’ve used the same skin care range for almost 20 years. I continue be sent lovely products from other companies to try because I’ve been involved for so long in skincare. Some are beautiful. I love trying them. But I always go back to my Environ products. SIMPLY REVOLUTIONARY Environ is the brainchild of South African plastic surgeon Des Fernandes. Fernandes is not only a creative plastic surgeon, he has been a pioneer in simplistic skincare. I have found his products the most effective for my skin anywhere. They are not the most aesthetically pleasing, beautifully fragranced and self-indulgent, but boy do they work—regardless of your age or your skin’s condition. In fact, it seems to me that Environ products just go on getting better year by year. Fernandes has always concerned himself with both intrinsic aging—once believed to be caused by nothing but the passing of the years—and extrinsic, or photo aging. He believes both to be unnatural and looks upon them as disease processes, which can and should be treated. I couldn’t agree more. Exposure to strong UV radiation, just like exposure to chemical toxins, literally uses up your body’s antioxidant supplies. “Few people,” says Fernandes, “understand that photo aging is almost entirely a manifestation of a vitamin deficiency in the skin. The most important vitamins are the light-sensitive ones, and the antioxidants A, C, E along with other important nutrients and plant factors.” What he says is absolutely true. Using Environ products, along with—and this is very important—eating in a way that supports not just the health of your skin, but the health of your whole being, enhances the order of your body’s biophotons improving the function of your body’s living matrix. Put this all together, and you have a prescription for beautiful skin that knows no age. MY FAVORITE Over the years, Environ has developed a number of ranges for specific skin needs. The most important of these, in my opinion, is their AVST range. It consists of five different products which contain vitamin A and antioxidants, as well as Vitamin C, Vitamin E, green tea extract, honey bush and rooibos tea extracts, resveratrol and beta-carotene. To use this range, you start with the lowest concentration of these products. As your skin becomes accustomed to the concentration of active ingredients it contains, you then “step up” from AVST 1 to AVST 2 and so on, until you reach AVST 5—the most intense concentration of them all. This is important, because your skin needs to get used to absorbing the nutrients they contain and this takes time. There are other products in the AVST range, including gels, cleansing lotions, toners, and exfoliant masks. Frankly, I seldom use the others. Why? Because, provided you have the core products, these work so well you may come to feel—as I do—that you don’t need much else. PREMIUM SKINCARE The other Environ range I’ve used for years is their ‘Ionzyme’ range. Fernandes refers to this as his “premium” range. What it brings is a complete skincare program which, again, contains vitamins, antioxidants and peptides to enhance the skin’s appearance and protect skin texture—bringing it a healthy glow. As far as I’m concerned, the combination of AVST and Ionzyme is unbeatable. Again, the Ionzyme range is comes in steps as does the AVST range: You start with Ionzyme C-Quence 1. As your skin begins accustomed to the intensity of this first product, your gradually move one step after another until you reach Ionzyme C-Quence 4. There is also an excellent Ionzyme C-Quence crème in the range that you use as part of the the C-Quence series. I rely entirely on AVST 5—since my skin has grown used to it for many years now—as well as the C-Quence crème. There are all sorts of other Environ products, including a range to help counter troubled skin; a range for the body; and an intensive range. TRIED AND TRUSTED What I like about Environ compared to other skin care ranges is that it’s a real workhorse. It cares for your skin quickly, easily and effectively. You don’t have to worry about what brand-new—ultra-expensive—products are hitting the marketplace with all their advertising hype. I couldn’t care less. I only want skincare that works, and goes on working year after year. Environ does. Fernandes has also created other highly innovative devices which have, since they came on the market, been much copied by other companies—such as the roll-CIT. This is a small roller impregnated with minute needles. You roll it gently over the surface of your skin so it makes micro-channels in the stratum corneum, which is the epidermal barrier to your skin’s deeper layers. This allows active ingredients to reach your skin’s depths even more effectively than if you just apply the products on the skin’s surface. A WORD OF WARNING The tiny holes created in the outer layer of the skin reseal themselves naturally within 24 hours, but here’s the rub: You want to be careful about anything else you put on your skin during this period. You could easily allow the penetration of toxic chemicals, fragrances and preservatives, which under no circumstances do you want to allow into your skin and your body as a whole. I would never put anything on my face or body that contains toxic chemicals of any kind. When the penetration of the nutrients in Environ products is increased using the roll-CIT, your skin manufactures more collagen. It becomes firmer, thicker and tighter. Fine lines soften. Although the roll-CIT may not be the greatest tool in the world for the faint-hearted, it works a treat. It’s an excellent example of what skin revolution and ingenuity is at its best. There’s even a medical version of the roll-CIT which probes deeper, allowing a dermatologist or a surgeon to increase the keratinocyte and fibroblast activity in a patient’s skin, softening lines, tightening and firming, restoring elasticity and reducing pigmentation. It improves the appearance of dilated blood vessels, and can be used on all areas of the face and body for skin rejuvenation. I have two roll-CITs—one specifically for the under-eye area, and one for the rest of my skin. LOW-MAINTENANCE PHILOSOPHY I hate fussing as much as I hate being fussed over in any form. I don’t even like going to the hairdresser to have my hair trimmed. All my life, I’ve disliked visiting cosmetologists and hairdressers. There are many more interesting things I want to do with my time. In recent years I’ve used the roll-CIT only infrequently, since my skin, thanks to 20 years of Environ care, is pretty good. What I love about Environ products is that they work so well that I don’t feel I need to do much else to look after my skin. But you can judge for yourself. Take a look at our videos See what you think, and let me know. You can find out more about Environ products at www.environ.co.za

Surprising Truths About Osteoporosis

Surprising Truths About Osteoporosis

In the way so many half-truths get blown up by commercial interests, we have been led to believe that all men and women need for strong bones is to get lots of calcium—either by popping pills or drinking milk. Millions of pounds and dollars have been spent to propagate these fantasies. Bottom line? Both these beliefs are fiction. Meanwhile, after four generations of aggressive milk promotion, the incidence of osteoporosis has reached epidemic proportions in the West. In countries where milk is not drunk, osteoporosis hardly exists. FORGET MILK So negative an effect can milk and milk products like some cheeses exert on a man or woman's health that, if you would care to experiment by leaving all milk products out of your diet for three weeks, you are likely to find you look and feel better, as well as experiencing great boosts in vitality. Sometimes doing this can be more difficult than you expect, however. Why? Because, in one form or another, milk finds its way into most convenience foods, including breads, biscuits, and sauces. It is even in a lot of nutritional supplements. Why, I cannot imagine! Milk is designed by nature for a very specific purpose—to feed young mammals until they can feed themselves. Cow’s milk was made for cows, and human milk for humans. As we grow up, our bodies lose the ability to produce lactase, the enzyme that digests the sugar in milk. This creates what is known as a lactose intolerance. Studies show that three out of every four adults in the United States have some degree of lactose intolerance and are therefore unable to digest milk properly. When they include dairy products in their diet they experience lower energy, their bodies produce more mucus in an immune reaction, and they experience food sensitivity reactions with symptoms that can include mood swings, depression, aches and pains and many other undermining issues, often with no sense of what has been causing them. UNDERMINES HEALTH Milk is the most common food allergen in the western world. Wheat follows close behind. But you find milk in one form or another just about everywhere—in cheese, cream, foods with cream sauces, yogurt, ice cream, breads, and all sorts of other manufactured food products. There is also strong evidence that milk—the pure white food which we are continually told will give us good bones, strong hair and “a lot of bottle”—is toxic to many. Dr Daniel Cramer at Harvard Medical School discovered that using milk products increases the risk of ovarian cancer in lactose-intolerant women. After extensive analysis of lactose-intolerant women in 36 countries, as well as meticulous examination of human and animal studies, researchers concluded that galactose, one of the milk sugars, is toxic to the ovaries and interferes with fertility. It may even trigger birth defects. According to Executive Director of The Dairy Education Board, Robert Cohen and many others, the consumption of milk and milk and milk products are in no small part to blame for a long list of health problems: rheumatoid arthritis stroke kidney stones acne heart disease multiple sclerosis diabetes breast cancer REAL MILK IS DIFFERENT Milk that comes from pastured cows containing all the natural fat, has not been processed and is not pasteurized or homogenized is the way to go, provided you are one of the lucky ones whose body can handle milk without any of the negative side effects. It is taken from healthy cows under sanitary conditions. Raw milk is full of natural components which kill pathogens in the human body and strengthen the immune system: Lacto-peroxidase and lactoferrin as well as anti-microbial components in blood, helpful carbohydrates (polysaccharides and oligosaccharides), healthy fats (medium chain fatty acids, phospholipids and spingolipids), and wonderful enzymes to aid digestion as well as growth factors, beneficial bacteria, bifidus factor and B12-binding protein. These natural ingredients in real raw milk are inactivated and destroyed when milk is pasteurized. Yet the huge dairy industry and governments continue to spread false information about the “dangers” of real milk and even to forbid its sale in some countries. WHAT ABOUT CALCIUM? Far from turning to milk as a source of calcium, most men and women who value wellbeing and good looks would be better off clearing out milk and milk products from their diet altogether. But hear this: If you are going to cut milk out of your diet, you need to get rid of anything that might contain milk products such as milk solids, sodium caseinate, sodium lactate, milk fats, whey, or lactose. So read labels carefully. As for taking pills, a number of researchers have shown that calcium supplements do little to stop the loss of cortical bone tissue. They have virtually no effect at all on trabecular bone in the spine and the hip, where most osteoporotic fractures occur. Yet having been told it again and again, most people still believe that the best source of calcium is milk or milk products. Of course, the question which is rarely asked is: Where does the calcium in milk come from in the first place? EAT YOUR GREENS Cows get calcium from eating green foods—grass, silage, herbs and plants. Only plants can take the calcium from the soil and turn it into a form available for absorption by animals. Beetroot tops, chinese leaves, roquette, lettuce, seaweeds, herbs and broad-leafed green vegetables are all excellent sources of calcium. A cup of any of these vegetables supplies as much calcium as a cup of milk. And vegetable-based calcium is easily assimilated, along with a collection of other important minerals and trace elements, without having to deal with possible negative side-effects of using milk products. Include plenty of leafy green vegetables in your meals and you’ll need never give calcium another thought. Incidentally, the reason why taking calcium supplements or drinking masses of milk has no effect in halting osteoporosis is this: The problem is not an absence of calcium in the body, but rather a disorder in calcium metabolism. A DELICATE PROCESS Calcium metabolism is a very complex process. In most people, absorption of calcium in general tends to be highly inefficient. Only somewhere between 20 and 30 percent of the calcium you take in through your foods will actually be absorbed. The rest gets filtered through your blood and then excreted in urine and sweat, or eliminated through the feces. Many factors influence just how much calcium your body will absorb at any time. When you are growing rapidly or when you place stress on your bones doing weight bearing exercise, your absorption of calcium is increased. When your body is in great need of calcium it is also absorbed more effectively. In fact, the smaller the supply of calcium available from your foods and the greater the need your body has for this mineral, the more efficient calcium absorption becomes. The opposite is also true. When large quantities of calcium are available—say if someone has been drinking a lot of milk, or has taken masses of calcium supplements as many women do—then the absorption of calcium is markedly decreased. It is worth remembering that in the United States, where the consumption of calcium supplements and milk products is highest in the world, so too is the incidence of osteoporosis. METABOLIC KEYS For calcium to function properly in relation to bone building, it has to be accompanied by phosphorus—but not too much—as well as magnesium, Vitamins A, B6, C, D, E and K. Zinc is also important, since zinc is a co-factor in the intra-cellular conversion of beta carotene to Vitamin A which in turn helps manufacture the collagen matrix of bone. Zinc has to be present in sufficient quantities for the body's enzymes to make the conversion. Even the trace elements boron and silicon, which are needed only in the most minute quantities, play important roles in bone strength. ALL POWERFUL MAGNESIUM What surprises most women—doctors too, for that matter—is that it is taking extra magnesium that can make the greatest difference to good calcium metabolism. Magnesium is another element essential for the proper metabolism of calcium. Magnesium probably acts as a catalyst for more enzymes in the body than any other mineral, in fact. Magnesium is plentiful in whole grains—brown rice, buckwheat, millet, whole wheat, whole rye and in legumes such as beans, lentils and peas, but low in highly processed foods. Adequate magnesium helps the body absorb calcium. Where there is a magnesium deficiency, not only can osteoporosis develop easily; so can joint and soft tissue calcification. Low intracellular magnesium undermines immune functions too, making women susceptible to infection and such hard-to-handle conditions as M.E. in which women with low intracellular magnesium have been found to have unnaturally shaped bone mineral crystals. Magnesium deficiency is common in both men and women with osteoporosis. Milk is relatively deficient in magnesium—another reason why it is a poor food for protection against osteoporosis. Magnesium deficiencies are particularly widespread in women over 35 who have long been living on the standard diet of convenience foods. PMS expert Guy Abraham MD showed that giving women 600mg of magnesium a day could bring about a significant increase in bone mass in nine months, although the women he treated were also given other vitamins and minerals as well as HRT, so it is impossible to determine just how much of the improvement was due to the magnesium. In an Israeli study, however, where 31 post menopausal women were given between 250-750mg of magnesium a day for two years, bone density increased between 1-8 percent in 75 percent of the cases and remained unchanged in the remaining 25 percent, while women who refused magnesium supplements altogether experienced losses in bone density of 1-3 percent. START EARLY IF YOU CAN Osteoporosis prevention is best started early—preferably in the teens, twenties and thirties, while the density of bones is still increasing. This makes it easy to build good strong bones and to establish good habits that can carry you through the second half of your life with no trouble. If you are female and osteoporosis has already begun, you may want to make use of topically applied, natural progesterone cream to help restore normal bone density, then keep you permanently osteoporosis-free. Finally, just in case all this sounds like a tall order, take heart. The benefits an osteoporosis-protective lifestyle can bring to overall health and good looks are immense. Such a lifestyle helps keep your immune system functioning well, helping to protect you from illness, countering early aging and degeneration, and enhancing your energy all round. Such a program begun at any age can make you look and feel great. Learn more: http://www.realmilk.com http://www.llli.org/FAQ/bflength.html http://www.notmilk.com/ http://saveourbones.com/osteoporosis-milk-myth/

Hair Outside

Hair Outside

The shine of your hair depends on the condition of the cuticle. Made up of transparent keratin, the cells of your hair's cuticle should form a clear, flat surface that refracts light, making your hair look shiny. But in order for these fish-scale-like plates to lie flat, the cuticle has to be healthy and contracted. This means that the imbrications - the natural shingles of the cuticle - need to be closed. When they are closed, your hair is protected from much physical and chemical damage and light catches it beautifully. Many things can disrupt the cuticle and lead to the opening of the imbrications: very alkaline shampoos, for instance, which make the hair shaft swell. The swelling pushes out the scaly cells, making them stand away from the shaft. Very strong alkaline substances such as perm solutions and bleaching agents can even dissolve some of the cuticle, leaving holes and tears in it, which makes your hair look permanently dull. Damage to the cuticle can come from physical causes too. For instance, too much heat on the hair from careless blow drying, teasing, or back-combing, and overexposure to the sun. To have shiny hair, you have to be particularly careful not to damage it from the outside. There are some things, however, that help restore a smooth cuticle to hair: mildly acidic substances, for instance, such as vinegar and lemon rinse or one of the proprietary conditioning treatments, all of which shrink the hair shaft and encourage the imbrications to close and the cells to lie flat. For most women they are far better than conditioners you can buy since they don't build up on the hair surface or weaken the hair over a long period of time. Simple rinses will also strengthen the keratin.  The natural oils secreted from the follicle which coat the outside shaft also help the hair look shiny. Provided, that is, that you wash your hair often enough. Oil left on hair for too long tends to accumulate dust and dirt on the shaft which quickly destroys shine. How much flexibility and bounce your hair has is also something that can be determined by how you look after it from the outside. It depends on the water content of each shaft. Healthy hair has enough water in it to keep the keratin in the hair shaft supple and firm, so that your hair will stretch without breaking, keep a style well, and feel silky. If the hair's water content becomes depleted from exposure to too much heat or the sun or a very alkaline shampoo, then it will become brittle, break easily, and refuse to hold a style. Another dehydrator is chlorine in swimming pools. Conditioners containing silicone can help coat the outside of each hair shaft to keep it from drying excessively. But the best insurance of all is simply keeping your hair away from too much heat and from chemical desiccators. the craft of hair care To be beautiful your hair has to be kept clean, well cut, brushed, and protected from external damage. It also needs the benefit of regular massage to ensure that circulation to the follicles in the scalp is good. Fullness, body, and the overall look of a head of hair are greatly determined by a good cut and by the kind of products and treatments you use on it. shampooing There are two types of shampoos: those containing soap and those that are artificial detergents. Most, these days, are detergent-based. The reason for this is that while soap is good for cleansing away old hair spray, dull oil, and epidermal debris, it tends to leave scum, particularly in hard water. Also, modern detergent shampoos do more than just clean. They contain other chemical ingredients, which impart cosmetic properties such as shine and manageability to hair. If your hair is short and you live in a soft-water area, you can probably get away with using soap, provided you use a conditioner afterwards. These days they come in many forms: pastes, clear liquids, cloudy lotions, and gels, and also with special ingredients such as herbs, protein, balsam, eggs, and lemon. But whatever their form, most shampoos are put together from the same basic chemicals. First there is the detergent itself to do the cleansing. Then there is a sequestering agent, which is a chemical that traps the minerals in hard water (such as lime) so that the shampoo lathers well and rinses away easily. Most shampoos also contain foam builders to increase their lathering abilities, plus either clarifying or opacifying agents, which do nothing for your hair but render the product either clear, cloudy or creamy depending on what manufacturers think will best appeal to the market. And, of course, all shampoos contain preservatives to keep their ingredients from spoiling. Conditioners are added to most shampoos nowadays. They vary from one formula to the next, but they include ingredients to eliminate static electricity from the hair when it dries, to coat the hair shaft with protein and thereby enlarge it making your hair look thicker, and to render the hair shafts slippery so that your hair doesn't tangle when you comb it out. Shampoos become more and more sophisticated every few years in their formulations - a sophistication that is certainly to the benefit of your hair, provided you can find the right one for you. And provided you change the shampoo you use every few weeks. Apart from certain guidelines that depend on your hair type, finding the right one is mostly a matter of trial and error. the question of PH There is one more additive - not exactly an additive, rather a group of them - which is important; chemicals are added to shampoos to make them pH-balanced. Your hair, like your skin, has an acid mantle, with a pH from 4.5 to 5.5, made out of the natural oils from the follicle. This acid mantle plays an important protective role keeping the imbrications of the cuticle from opening and the hair from becoming hard to manage, dull-looking, and vulnerable to damage. A shampoo that is pH-balanced, that is which is slightly acidic so that its pH is about the same as your hair's, helps to maintain the hair's strength and health. If it does not say "pH-balanced" on the label, you can check it with litmus paper. Alkaline shampoos disturb and disrupt the acid mantle, causing the tiny scales of the cuticle to open and the hair shaft to swell. Using a pH-balanced shampoo is particularly important if your hair is fragile, permed or colored. If your hair is strong and in good condition, then it does not really matter what kind of shampoo you use on it, provided you put a cream rinse or a homemade vinegar-and-water or lemon-and-water rinse on it afterwards. Since conditioners and rinses such as these are acidic, they will close up the imbrications opened by the shampoo, shrink the hair shaft back to its normal size and leave it looking shiny. what kind of shampoo for you? Lemon: These shampoos are especially good for oily hair, because they help remove the oil without leaving the hair lackluster and lank. Balsam: This is a good ingredient to choose if your hair is very fine or lacks body. Balsam is a resinous substance from the bark of certain trees. In a shampoo it coats the hair shafts, lending them thickness and strength. Chamomile: This is an excellent ingredient for blonde or light brown hair, since this flower has mild bleaching properties. If you use a chamomile shampoo regularly it helps keep light hair bright and shiny. Herbs: "Herbs" added to a shampoo doesn't mean a great deal, for many herb formulas (unlike chamomile) have no real action on the hair and are created only to appeal to women's back-to-nature feelings. Some, however, such as white nettle, can be useful for dandruff. Protein: Protein shampoos come in two types; both can be useful for hair. The first type contains a simple protein made from eggs, milk, soya, gelatin, beef, or an exotic vegetable called tong bean, which helps to coat the outer layers of the hair making the hair look thicker. Most protein shampoos are of this type. The second type does far more. Called substantive protein, the protein it contains is hydrolyzed and of the correct molecular weight and size to be absorbed into the cuticle, strengthening it at the same time as aligning its scales and thickening the shaft. This kind of protein shampoo is particularly good for use on treated, damaged, or fine hair. It is not so valuable on strong and healthy hair, for hydrolyzed polypeptide proteins are absorbed more rapidly by damaged hair than by a relatively compact keratin structure which does not really need them. When buying a shampoo don't worry if it does not give much lather since this is more a measure of the sequestering agent it contains than of its cleaning ability. It should have a good conditioning action to leave your hair soft and gleaming, and your hair should be easy to comb out afterwards. It should also rinse out easily. How often you shampoo depends on you and on the type of hair you have. If it is dry, not more than a couple of times a week is best. If it is normal or oily you can shampoo every day if you like, provided you use a pH-balanced shampoo. However often you do, you need only lather once, unless your hair is really grimy. More than once strips away too much of the hair's natural oils from the cuticle. getting hair into condition All cream rinses, conditioners, and treatments are on the acidic side of the pH scale. They are intended to close up the imbrications of the cuticle after shampooing and to shrink it back to normal size. In addition, a cream rinse should contain ingredients such as quaternary aluminum salts to separate the individual hairs and make them easy to comb out and to protect against static electricity. Finally, they coat hairs with an ingredient such as protein or balsam, which is supposed to give more body and protect the cuticle from moisture loss. Some conditioners contain a large quantity of oil. They are fine for dry hair but will make normal and oily hair into a lank mop that needs to be washed again the next day or so. If you ever have this trouble with a conditioner or cream rinse then try one of the oil-free ones. They do a better job in adding body and protecting hair without causing lankness. Protein packs or concentrated treatments left on the hair for from five to twenty minutes (the hair will take up all of a substance it is going to in twenty minutes, so there is never any reason to leave it any longer) are excellent as an occasional treatment for hair of all types (say once a month or every six weeks) and exceptionally good for colored, permed, or damaged hair used once a week. They will strengthen and protect the hair and leave it soft and shiny. But beware of over-conditioning. It is one of the worst and most commonly unrecognized causes of dull, limp hair. It also shortens the life of any perm significantly. Many women dissatisfied with the state of their hair keep using more and more conditioners in an attempt to make things better. Instead these products penetrate deep into the cortex undermining the strength of the hair shaft and causing hairs to split and fracture. If this is happening to you, use a gentle shampoo with no conditioners and rinse with lemon juice and water instead for a few shampoos. style and setting Because the keratin that makes up hair is a protein, like all proteins it can be treated with heat to change its shape. This makes it possible to curl, uncurl, shape, and mold your hair into a particular style by blow-drying it, by setting it wet and allowing it to dry, or by using heated rollers, straighteners  or curling tongs on dry hair. The protein of hair consists of molecules arranged in organized patterns held together by two kinds of chemical bonds: hydrogen and sulfur. The hydrogen bonds are the weaker of the two. When you set your hair on rollers, or blow it dry while easing it into a particular shape, you break, then re-form, these hydrogen bonds to create a temporary new structure. But it is a tenuous one for water, heat, lots of brushing and time can break the hydrogen bonds again so that your hair returns to its former structure and you lose the new shape. Sulfur bonds are strong. They can be broken only by strong alkaline solutions such as those of perms, straightening or coloring products. Sulfur bonds are broken and then re-formed when you have your hair permed, and the new structure formed through these changes lasts far longer. The problem with breaking either hydrogen or sulfur bonds and then re-forming them is that most of the things used to style a head of hair, such as heat and alkaline solutions, are potentially damaging to it. They have to be used with care. Blow drying is an excellent way to style straight or curly hair, provided you have patience and strong arms. If you have dry or brittle hair don't blow dry it every day. Hot air can cause progressive, cumulative damage to the cuticle and, finally, to the cortex and medulla, too. If your hair is delicate, choose a dryer that is not too high in watts (1,000 is enough), as a high wattage may do the job faster but your hair will suffer if you are not extremely careful to keep the dryer far enough from the hair or to use the lowest setting. If your hair is heated above 150 degrees Fahrenheit (66 C), you can do irreversible damage to it, making it brittle, dry, and scorched. There are some protein-based lotions that you can spray on your hair to help protect it from the intense heat - these are specifically designed for blow dryers, and most of them are very good. But you still need to be careful. Do your hair in two stages: First use the dryer on its own to get the hair almost dry all over, then begin styling with the dryer in one hand and your curved or round brush (made specially for blow drying) in the other. Keep the dryer six inches from your hair - which should be raised off the head at a 90 degree angle - and constantly moving. Section your hair into the sides, the back, the side back, and the top front, clipping each section and then letting it down as you need it. Begin on the underneath of one side and then work around the whole head, drying the hair section by section. Do the back first, the front always last, brushing and drying the hair against the direction in which it grows. This creates volume. Do the underneath layers first. When they are dry, bring down another layer from above to work on, constantly twirling the brush in the hair to get the curve and the shape you are after. Last of all, do the front or the fringe, brushing it back and then curving it over the forehead and finally brushing it into place. The art of blow-drying your hair yourself is something that takes time and a great deal of practice to learn, and it is important before you begin styling that your hair is almost dry or you will exhaust yourself in the process. Setting your hair can be done wet on rollers or dry on heated rollers or the hair can be curled dry using curling tongs or a heated brush. A wet set will last you longest, provided you dry it thoroughly under a dryer or in the air. Heated rollers, if you have dry or brittle hair, are something you should not use every day for they tend to damage the ends of the hair. This can he avoided somewhat by wrapping each roller with a piece of tissue paper or toilet paper before putting it into your hair. Never use heated rollers on wet hair - they won't work. And never use a curling iron on wet hair or you may damage it badly. Always section your hair carefully when you are putting rollers in - the more rollers you use and the less hair on each the better and longer-lasting will be the style you get. A useful technique is to blow-dry the hair and then put in a couple of heated rollers at the front to give it extra swing and shape. However you style your hair, always let it cool before brushing out, or you will ruin the new structure of it. brushing and combing Brushing is good for hair, provided you have a good brush and you do not overdo it. It stimulates circulation of the scalp, removes loose scales from the skin on the head, and distributes your hair's natural oils well, which means it helps protect the cuticles and creates shine. The brush you choose should have evenly spaced bristles with rounded ends. The best brushes for your hair are still made from animal bristles. Nylon bristles have blunt ends, which can cause splits and cracks to the hair. Some brushes have bristles set in rubber. They are particularly good, for they give a massage to the scalp while you brush. About thirty to fifty strokes a day is good - more than that is too much, and with less you are not really doing anything. When you brush, you need to bend at the waist and brush your hair from underneath as well as back from the crown. The more positions you can brush from (leaning to the side, with head hanging down, etc.) the better job you will do. Lowering your head while you brush back the side does something else, too. It brings circulation to the scalp in the way that the yoga headstand does. If your hair is long, don't pull the brush through the full length of it. Instead, brush to the shoulder and then, taking hold of the rest of the hair with your other hand, pull the brush down the rest of the way to the ends. You should always brush firmly, but never drag. And you should never brush wet hair, for the disruption of the hydrogen bonds that comes with wetting makes your hair a great deal more susceptible to breakage and damage than when it is dry. Some women fear that brushing is going to take out too much hair. This is unfounded. You will only lose the telogen hairs, which are ready to be lost anyway, and their loss will simply stimulate new growth. When choosing a comb, pick one with the largest teeth you can find that are blunt at the ends so they don't scratch the scalp. Hard rubber, nylon, or bone are the best. Always comb your hair gently, never yanking or pulling at a tangle. massage can be wonderful Anything that increases circulation to the scalp and activates the papillae and follicles tends to make for sturdier hair shafts and to improve hair growth. Besides daily brushing, the best thing you can do for the hair is to massage the scalp. Many people have a genetic tendency to restricted circulation in the scalp, which shows itself in slow hair growth and poor-quality hair. Each hair root is fed by the complex vascular network in the scalp that brings nutrients and oxygen through the blood and carries away carbon dioxide and other metabolic wastes. When circulation there is poor, the hair root suffers. Waste products build up in the tissues so that the hair cells grow only slowly and may even die, resulting in thinning hair. This can be avoided (and often corrected, too) by scalp massage. People with a tendency to oily hair can also benefit from massage. A healthy scalp is loose, rich in vascularity, and thick. The scalp of someone who produces excessive oil is usually just the opposite of this: tight, with poor circulation, and thin. Daily massage can do a great deal to correct this. The idea that massaging your head will make an oily condition even worse because it stimulates the follicles to produce even more oil is just not true. It is far more likely to help normalize trigger-happy oil glands than to stimulate them to further production. Many a too oily head of hair is put right by massage. here's how to massage Using your finger tips and the palm of your hand just below the thumb, push them firmly into your scalp at the sides and, keeping them in the same place, rotate them in small circles. You will be moving the scalp, not your fingers, it is important that fingers stay in the same place to stimulate circulation well and so that you never pull your hair. After you have worked in one position for about thirty seconds, remove both hands from your head and take up a new position, rotating fingertips again firmly for thirty seconds there and so on until you have done your whole scalp. The massage shouldn't take more than three minutes, and it will leave you feeling fresher as well as doing something good for your hair. An electric vibrator is also a good investment for hair: Use it both on your scalp and on your neck and shoulders.

Leslie Kenton’s Cura Romana®

Fast, Healthy Weight Loss

Leslie Kenton’s Cura Romana® has proudly supported 12,000+ weight loss journeys over the past 11 years. With an overall average daily weight loss of 0.5 - 0.6 lb for women and 0.8 - 1.0 lb for men.

Yesterday’s Average Daily Weight Loss:

on the 20th of September 2019 (updated every 12 hours)

-0.96 lb
for women
-1.23 lb
for men
-0.96 lb
for women
-1.23 lb
for men

Yesterday’s Average Daily Weight Loss:

on the 20th of September 2019 (updated every 12 hours)

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