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beauty

70 articles in beauty

Secrets For Radiant Skin

Secrets For Radiant Skin

Beautiful skin vibrates with energy. All twenty-one square feet of it. Skin is not only your largest organ. It is a multi-dimensional interactive system of information, molecules, energy, cells, and genetic messages determined by the health of your body. In fact our skin is completely dependent on the body’s living matrix for its radiance. Learn to feed it well and your living matrix will function at a high level of order. Your skin becomes regenerated and rejuvenated no matter what’s your age. Who ever said it’s not possible to turn back time? THE BIG THREE There are three little-known nutraceuticals to turn to when your skin needs extra help. They represent a magnum force against aging, wrinkles and skin problems. They form the core of a wide-based anti-aging, anti-inflammatory antioxidant army, working to protect the integrity of the living matrix. The big three work wonderfully together. They also work well when taken with the more common antioxidants from alpha-lipoic acid, grape seed extract and Co-enzyme Q10 to vitamin C and zinc. TAKE SULFUR Sulfur is the third largest elemental component of your body. The hottest item in offices of savvy plastic surgeons these days is a unique form of sulfur known as MSM—methyl-sulfonyl-methane. At the top of the list for extra support, MSM is a superb free radical scavenger. It neutralizes free radical molecules that damage skin. Found in every tissue of your body, MSM concentrations diminish with age. So they need to be supported by the right kind of diet and supplements after the age of 25. MSM is also found in rainwater, the sea, and all living organisms. It exists in especially high concentrations in raw vegetables, fruits, and sea foods. Even the cocoa plant from which chocolate is made is a good source. But, unless your diet is composed primarily of raw foods, it is highly unlikely that you are getting enough MSM for optimal health and beautiful skin. The crème de la crème source of sulfur for the human body, MSM slows the loss of collagen, stabilizes connective tissues, and helps clear toxic buildup both on a cellular level and in the body as a whole. MSM is light years ahead of other forms of sulfur. It is completely safe as well as highly effective. Even people who are “allergic” to sulfur-drugs and sulfite-based food additives thrive on it. GREAT NAILS AND HAIR Sulfur is the most beautifying of all the elements. Even the curliness of hair depends on it. It regulates the sodium/potassium balance, bringing in nutrients and oxygen to cells and neutralizing wastes. Every time your body clears destructive chemicals, it uses sulfur to do this. MSM provides elasticity and healing repair to skin tissues. It can even alter cross linkages, smoothing out scars. It is not only useful as an internal supplement essential for beauty. As a prime free radical scavenger, this form of physiological sulfur also helps rid the body of allergies. It even helps protect the lining of the digestive tract from parasites and pathogens. This is most important for skin, since when leaky gut or dysbiosis occurs in the digestive tract, our skin suffers. If you have a tendency to acne, you can break out. If your skin tends to be dry, this can make it drier and give the face a colorless, lifeless look. Sulfur is also essential for strong cartilage, for bones, and to build keratin—the fibrous protein out of which your hair and nails are made—as well as for virtually every function of the skin. With extra MSM, your nails grow faster and stronger. Your hair gets thicker and shinier. A good dose of MSM is 2000 milligrams (2 grams) for each 60 kilos of weight a day. Start with 500 mg per 60 kilos of weight and work up. Use together with half that amount of vitamin C (so if you take 2 grams of MSM take 1 gram of vitamin C). POWER FOR LONGEVITY The second master nutraceutical for skin is carnosine. Carnosine is not to be confused with the amino acid L-carnitine which transports fatty acids into the mitochondria of cells so they can be turned into ATP. Carnosine is a dipeptide—a two-part protein—made out of the amino acids beta-alanine and L-histidine. Like MSM, it is a natural metabolite in your body as well as a powerful antioxidant. It occurs in particularly high concentration in long-lived cells like nerves and muscles. Carnosine levels also decline as our bodies age. In muscles, its concentration falls by more than 60 percent between the age of 10 and 70. Carnosine both rejuvenates old cells and extends the functional life of skin’s building blocks—DNA—as well as its lipids and proteins. As such, it is identified as an “agent of longevity”. This amazing dipeptide also clears toxicity. When chromosomes are exposed to high levels of oxygen, carnosine is the only antioxidant known to protect them from oxidative damage. It rejuvenates connective tissue and speeds wound healing. Carnosine may eventually prove to be an important key to dissolving AGEs and destructive cross-linking of collagen after it has occurred, but it is too soon to tell for sure. THE CARNOSINE PARADOX Carnosine addresses the great paradox of life—the fact that the elements which support life—glucose, lipids, oxygen proteins and trace elements—also destroy it. This nutraceutical binds toxic metals so your body is able to eliminate them safely. Carnosine both supports life and protects from its destruction. It guards cells and protein tissues from oxidation damage. It prevents glycosylation—the process that produces AGEs to build up leading to collagen cross-linking, wrinkles and sags. Research studies in Australia confirm that carnosine increases the longevity of fibroblasts—the skin cells responsible for producing collagen. It also extends the Hayflick limit—the maximum number of times a cell can divide before dying—by a remarkable 20 percent. Because of its ability to repair protein tissue, Russians use carnosine, with great success, in a special form called N-alpha acetylcarnosine—or NAC—in eye drops to eradicate cataracts. It improves your overall skin condition and is able to treat tough leathery skin as well as help prevent many age signs on the face. Used as an oral nutraceutical, the recommended dose is 50 to 200mg of carnosine a day taken on an empty stomach. In the case of carnosine, more is most certainly not better. Doses above this amount can actually be less effective. BEAUTY’S GOLDEN THREAD The last place you might expect to find a golden thread in the tapestry of living skin is in a special form of vitamin B3—nicotinamide or niacinamide. This form behaves quite differently than the well-known nicotinic acid which causes hot flushes when swallowed. As far back as 1968, Nobel Laureate Linus Pauling published research reporting success in the treatment of psychiatric patients using moderate doses of niacinamide together with ascorbic acid. Nicotinamide has long been used both topically and orally for its anti-inflammatory abilities. It has a stunning ability to reverse many aspects of skin aging when used internally and even externally when used as a component of skincare products: As a precursor to electron carrier substances in living cells—NAD and NADP—nicotinamide enhances energy production within the living matrix. It takes part in many metabolic pathways including turning glucose into ATP making fatty acids important for skin beauty, and metabolizing proteins. It increases collagen synthesis by stimulating the activity of fibroblast cells, prolonging their life, and protecting them from senescence. It decreases skin inflammation by inhibiting the release of histidine, triggering the production of anti-inflammatory mediators. It enhances the synthesis of lipids important for good cell walls and overall skin health and beauty. It diminishes wrinkling. It repairs DNA when skin has been exposed to too much UV light, electromagnetic frequencies or chemical pollution. It helps fade age spots and helps prevent the formation of new ones. It plays a central role in blocking genetic messages that result in skin cell aging. BANISHING FREE RADICALS If, in addition to the three master nutraceuticals—MSM, nicotinamide and carnosine—you might want to use one more nutraceutical with first-rate antioxidant properties. You can’t do better than thiotic acid—also known as alpha-lipoic acid—ALA. The “universal antioxidant”, this sulfur-based, vitamin-like substance is an important cofactor in the production of cellular energy. When it is not in sufficient supply, muscle mass shrinks and skin’s energy is reduced. ALA protects DNA and mitochondrial membranes, inhibits inflammation and remodels collagen. Thiotic acid is used as a drug in Germany because of its ability to enhance sugar metabolism. A unique free radical scavenger, thiotic acid is both fat- and water-soluble. This means it travels easily across cell membranes to quench free radicals, both inside and out. A very small molecule, ALA works together with other antioxidants to recycle them. When vitamin E quenches lipid peroxidation, a new free radical is formed. Thiotic acid reduces that new radical, turning it back into Vitamin E so it is ready to fight the battle for yet another day. It does the same with vitamin C. The usual internal dose of ALA is 100 mg taken twice a day with meals. ALA is an excellent nutraceutical. I use it when I am traveling or am under a lot of pressure from work. It’s great stuff. But it doesn’t hold a candle to the magnum force the “big three”—MSM, nicotinamide and carnosine—have to offer when used together. If you are going to explore the power of nutraceuticals for skin, I suggest you begin with this combination, then work your way down the list, adding ALA and others if you feel you need them. And what is so wonderful is this: Making use of the Big Three can not only transform the look and feel of your skin. Thanks to the power of the body’s living matrix, they can regenerate and rejuvenate body, mind and emotions as well. Now Foods, MSM, 1000 mg MSM (Methylsulphonylmethane) is a natural form of organic sulfur found in all living organisms. This natural compound, researched since 1979, provides the chemical links needed to form and maintain numerous different types of tissues found in the human body, including connective tissue such as articular cartilage. While MSM is a natural component of almost all fresh fruits, vegetables, seafood and meat, food-processing methods reduce sulfur levels, making supplementation more important than ever. NOW MSM is tested to meet a minimum 99.7% purity level. Order MSM from iherb Paradise Herbs, L-Carnosine L-Carnosine is a proton buffering neuropeptide consisting of alanine and histidine (beta-alanyl-L-histidine). It is normally found in the brain, innervated tissues, the lens of the eye and skeletal muscle tissue. Current scientific research suggests that L-Carnosine has the ability to protect cells against oxidative stress that can cause premature aging and cellular damage. L-Carnosine has heavy metal, free radical and active sugar molecule scavenging activity (helps prevent glycation of proteins). Order L-Carnosine from iherb Thorne Research, Niacinamide The B vitamin niacinamide, also known as nicotinamide, is one form of vitamin B3. It acts as an antioxidant, inhibiting free radical formation, and has been shown to promote pancreatic beta-cell regeneration. Niacinamide has been found to stimulate GABA (an inhibitory neurotransmitter) receptors without binding to the receptor sites, thus creating a sedative-like effect. High amounts of niacinamide have been documented as being beneficial in protecting joint cartilage cells. Niacinamide has also been used in support of several dermatological conditions. Order Niacinamide from iherb Doctor's Best, Best Alpha Lipoic Acid Alpha lipoic acid (ALA) is a fatty acid that functions like a vitamin, although it is not classified as a vitamin. As a coenzyme, ALA plays an important role in the metabolism of glucose that produces energy in cells. ALA also has antioxidant properties and thus is important for controlling free radicals. Because it is soluble in both water and fat, ALA is sometimes referred to as the "universal antioxidant." Order Alpha Lipoic Acid from iherb

Skin Help

Skin Help

Theoretically, having beautiful skin is simple. Take one part clear young skin, add the forty or so known nutrients from fresh foods eaten as much as possible in their natural state, and mix together with exercise for overall tone and proper breathing for good oxygenation of cells. Put in a dose of fresh air and a pinch of stimulation now and then. Stir well and you've got a recipe that will last for years. That's the theory. In practice, however, things can go wrong: an early wrinkle, acne, dryness, roughness - that's when you need help from special cosmetics, vitamins, and treatments. when skin dries out the cause Dried-out skin usually comes from under-active sebaceous glands, which don't produce enough of this important oily fluid to lubricate the skin and protect it from excessive water loss. It can also be the result of being exposed to excessively drying weather conditions, central heating, or air conditioning. Another, rarer, cause is being on a diet too low in essential fatty acids, such as a fat-free slimming regimen. Excessive dryness of the skin also occurs in people who, unknown to themselves, are suffering from deficiencies of vitamin A or C or any one of several of the B-complex group. prevention and cure Use a water-in-oil emulsion on your face night and day to protect against excessive water loss, by trapping the water in the outer layer of the skin and preventing it from being given up into the atmosphere. Ensure that you get enough essential fatty acids in your diet by using olive oil in your salad dressings and cutting out convenience foods full of junk fats. Consider taking supplements of vitamins A and D in the form of fish liver oil, or drinking fresh carrot juice a couple of times a day and taking some EPA and DHA in supplement form along with GLA. Try putting GLA in the form of borage oil or evening primrose oil directly on the skin too. You need to leave the oil on the skin for only fifteen minutes; then you can remove the excess with a tissue. Vitamin E taken internally and rubbed on the skin from capsules is often helpful too. Other helpful things include a humidifier, weekly steaming of the skin followed by an oil massage, and mineral water sprayed from an atomizer before applying your moisturizer or treatment products. Don't wash your skin with soap. Don't use any skin product containing alcohol. Use a mask for dry skin. Use aromatherapy oils you mix yourself to contain the essences most useful for dry skin, such as geranium, chamomile, rose, sandalwood, lavender, and ylang-ylang. Always choose an oil-based makeup foundation. the oil crisis Oily skin, or seborrhea, is the result of overactive sebaceous glands: it usually occurs due to a hormonal imbalance in the body. Occasionally a diet too high in fats and fried foods or refined sugar can contribute to the condition, as can too much stimulation of the sebaceous glands by heat, the sun, or skin-care products. Studies show that people on diets slightly deficient in some of the B group of vitamins rapidly develop whiteheads, blackheads, and oily hair and skin. prevention and cure Treatment for seborrhea has changed in recent years. Dermatologists used to think the way to deal with the condition was literally to dry out the skin. Dermatologists now realize that oily skin is not the tough and robust stuff they once thought it was. They have found that the use of drying agents in cosmetic products in most cases only treats the problem temporarily by removing excess oil at the expense of worsening the condition in the long run. Attempts to cover it up and to cover up acne with heavy, drying makeup are generally unsuccessful too. The new approach is different, but it may take time for you to get used to it if you are still thinking in the old way. Instead of using harsh products on your skin, buy a mild, lotion cleanser without any drying agent for cleansing and removing makeup. It should be an oil itself or an oil-in-water emulsion. Rub it on gently with clean hands, then wipe it off completely with tissues before rinsing with fresh, cool water. It is important to remove it all. You don't need a tonic or a freshener, but if you want one, make sure it contains no alcohol (alcohol is also a drier). During the day, wear a water-in-oil moisturizer and forget the heavy foundation. Instead, as soon as the moisturizer has had a chance to set, powder your face with double the amount of powder you would usually use, dust off the excess, then spray the face with a fine mist of water (preferably spring water from an atomiser, but you can use ordinary water in a spray bottle so long as the spray is very fine). Now blot with a tissue and then powder again. This will keep your skin looking fresh and matte as well as calming the flow of oil from trigger-happy glands. It will also help gradually to shrink the size of your pores. Then, throughout the day, every three or four hours or whenever necessary, you can repowder, and you'll never end up with the ugly, cakey mess oily-skinned women usually get. Also, stay out of the sun. Sunbathing may dry your skin for a while, but when indoors weather comes you will find you're faced with the results of the same situation: over-stimulation of the sebaceous glands by ultraviolet light, which results in all the problems you have been trying to get rid of. From a nutritional point of view, if your skin is too oily, don't eat fatty foods or fried foods and do eat plenty of raw green vegetables and B-complex vitamins from wholegrain breads and cereals, and liver. The B vitamins (particularly B6, niacin, and B2) in these foods are vital in the treatment of excessively oily skin and the acne that often accompanies it. Vitamin A and beta-carotene can also be useful in treating skin that is too oily. It can be taken together with vitamin D as fish liver oil, or in higher doses on its own as well. Vitamin C, potassium, and calcium have also been reported helpful. ultrasensitive and allergic skin the causes The word allergy means `altered response' in Greek. If you are allergic to something, this means that your body has come into contact with it and instead of reacting normally to it or not at all, it has reacted with hostility, resulting in raised, red, itchy splotches on the skin. An acute reaction occurs within seconds or minutes after coming in contact with the allergen. You can inhale it, say in the form of a hair spray, or you can take it in through your skin as a face cream or a makeup product. There are also delayed reactions, which come about only after a few hours or even days after coming into contact with the allergen. prevention and cure Apart from nutritional therapy to strengthen the whole organism against allergic reactions, the only effective way to deal with skin sensitivities is to be careful about what you put on your face. Get to know the hypoallergenic cosmetics - skin-care and makeup products made without known irritants. Most are inexpensive yet very good and specially formulated with ingredients that have little likelihood of causing problems. The prefix `hypo' means `less'. Hypoallergenic products are designed to be less reaction-producing than other cosmetics. They are fragrance-free and leave out such common troublemakers as aluminum salts, wool fat, and phenol. For immediate relief, skin inflammation usually responds well to calamine lotion, simple witch hazel, and some poultices made with herbs such as calendula. One of the best to use is comfrey, whose very name denotes healing in Latin. It contains the natural anti-inflammatory substance allantoin, which is often used in skin ointments. Make a comfrey compress by pouring half a cup of boiling water over half a cup of the dried herb. Let it cool to a bearable temperature, near body heat, then put the wet herb on the face. Cover with gauze and lie down for fifteen minutes while it cools. This kind of compress will also reduce the pain and swelling over a bruise or a pulled muscle, as well as calm inflamed skin. when acne strikes the cause Although it is more common among teenagers than among any other age group, acne, an infection of the sebaceous glands, can occur at any time in life. It shows up as blackheads, whiteheads, pimples, and pustules that occur on the face and neck, back and chest. The cause of acne is still not completely understood, and the recommended treatment tends to vary. Many people with acne are victims of a food sensitivity or allergy - the most common allergens being wheat, milk, or preservatives and colorings. And when the elimination of waste via the alimentary canal is inadequate, often wastes are eliminated through the skin. Finally, stress and emotional upset are often implicated. prevention and cure Look to your diet first. Eliminate sweets, sugared soft drinks, and fatty foods such as nuts and fried foods. A diet in which at least 50 per cent of your foods are eaten raw often does wonders for even long-term acne, provided it is used in conjunction with the proper external care and vitamin and mineral supplements where necessary. It is essential to keep the skin clean, removing dirt and excess oil or waxy sebum regularly, using gentle, pH-balanced soaps or detergent cleansers. Skin should be washed in warm water at least twice a day and steamed twice a week to encourage the release of waste matter. Of course your hands should be immaculate so as not to encourage further infection. Topical agents are often helpful. Retinoic acid, a derivative of vitamin A acid (available only by prescription) applied to the skin is one of the commonly used and generally effective treatments for acne. Sometimes dermatologists use the antibiotic tetracycline, usually administered in doses of 250mg twice a day. In many cases this has dramatically reduced the acne, but there are disadvantages to antibiotic treatment, too. Because of the stress aspects of acne, both regular exercise and meditation or deep relaxation can be helpful too. stretch marks the cause Stretch marks occur frequently on the abdomen and breasts of pregnant women and on the thighs, hips and buttocks of women who have been overweight - particularly women who are deficient in zinc, vitamin B6, or both. A sudden increase in weight or volume of an area of the body or the swelling of breasts and abdomen in pregnancy results in these unsightly lines, which are difficult to eliminate. prevention and cure Ensure that you get adequate zinc, silica and vitamin B6 in your diet - if necessary by supplementing it. Women who are on the Pill are particularly susceptible to deficiencies of these two nutrients. If you gain weight or become pregnant, treat your skin from outside with preventative measures by rubbing on an aromatherapy oil for your skin type twice a day or by the use of cocoa butter. There is supposed to be no cure for stretch marks once they are formed, for the consistency of the skin itself in that area has changed to resemble scar tissue and therefore remains permanently disfigured. What I have seen is that old stretch marks improve greatly with aromatherapy treatment and connective-tissue massage, which appears to bring life back into the tissue by increasing circulation in the area. But while I have seen them fade greatly - enough for the woman to wear a bikini again without fear of looking ugly - I have never known them to disappear completely. blackheads, whiteheads, and pimples the causes A blackhead consists of a solid plug of oil that clogs the pore and then blackens due to oxidation on exposure to the air. If it is left alone it will simply stay there in the skin. Blackheads do not cure themselves. A whitehead looks like a tiny white lump on the skin. Once formed, it will remain unless the chemistry of the oil follicle changes, in which case the whitehead turns into a pimple. prevention and cure Blackheads on oily areas of the face (such as around the nose and chin) that are not inflamed can be removed easily by first steaming the skin to open the pores and loosen the oil material. Then gently, with scrupulously clean hands and the tips of your fingers wrapped in facial tissue, you can ease out the plugs. Never use your nails. Finish off the treatment with the application of an antiseptic cream. If you have many whiteheads it is best to follow nutritional and treatment advice for oily skin. The elimination of a dormant whitehead can only be done by a professional. Besides care in keeping skin clean and nutritional prevention of excessively oily skin, little should be done with a pimple other than to allow it to take its course. don't let age get under your skin Nothing betrays age like the state of your skin. When you are young, it is thick, glowing, soft and elastic. As the years go by, a number of changes take place. To slow down this process and to keep a young healthy skin as long as possible you have first to retain a young, healthy body. This is a total, ongoing process depending on good nutrition, stress control, exercise, and protection from the environment. There aren't any shortcuts. But the good news is this: these skin aging changes appear to be not so dependent on the passage of time as they were once believed to be. There is much, therefore, you can do to retard them. to tan or not to tan A tan is a protective reaction. It results from the formation of melanin, the skin's natural pigmentation produced by special cells whose action is triggered by exposure to ultraviolet rays. Every woman has a unique capacity for melanin production, depending on her genetic inheritance. Dark, thick, Mediterranean skins produce more melanin. This is why they will turn a darker brown than the `English rose' skin, which produces far less. There are some important things to remember about tanning and how to protect your skin from aging and cancers: There is no way to get a safe tan. Never use a sunbed.  They filter out UVB burning rays but let the UVA in deep.  They are automatic aging machines. SPF numbers don't tell you about UVA protection from wrinkling and aging.  Most only deal with UVB protection against burning. For the safest protection from aging and burning read labels.  Shun chemical sunscreens in favor of physical sunblocks - products based on micro minerals such as titanium dioxide or zinc oxide, which do not absorb the sun's rays or react with your skin. Apply a sunblock a quarter of an hour before going out into the sun. Water resistant products are not what they seem.  Their effectiveness is compromised by sweat and swimming.  Reapply them often. If you are using or have used any kind of AHAs, Retin-A/Renova or any other pharmaceuticals on your face, wear a hat which shades your face as well as a physical sunblock and don't spent a lot of time outdoors. Never get sunburnt.  The damage it causes continues to get worse for 24 hours after the initial burn appears, and when severe it can last a lifetime. Think twice before taking oral contraceptives or HRT.  Use of these hormone-based drugs is correlated with a three times greater risk of melanomas in women under 40.  they make you prone to irregular pigmentation - age spots- as well. Take a tip from the Arabs, who know a lot about sun protection.  Cover your body well when you plan to spend long hours outdoors.  Always wear a hat. Use one of the excellent new non-reactive, mineral-based makeup products on your face (such as Jane Iredale) which lasts all day, looks natural, covers your skin and reflects UV rays for extra protection. forget the cigarettes Smoking also makes skin age rapidly. This is probably because of a substance called benzopyrene, which is found in cigarette smoke and which uses up the body's supply of vitamin C rapidly, making it unavailable for the support of healthy collagen. So the skin wrinkles earlier. The skin of smokers wrinkles and ages up to twenty years sooner than that of nonsmokers. But the problem with cigarette smoke doesn't end there. For it is not only the smoker whose skin can suffer from it. So can the nonsmoker's. She may take in considerable quantities of benzopyrene, tar, carbon monoxide, and other irritating substances just by being in a room with others who are smoking. Some dermatologists concerned about the dangerous effects of cigarette smoke on skin recommend that every smoker supplement her diet with additional vitamin C at a rate of 25mg for each cigarette she smokes. But if you are serious about preventing aging, give up smoking altogether - no matter how difficult it seems, and no matter how many excuses you can make for yourself about why you think you can't just now.

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.

De-Age Your Skin

De-Age Your Skin

There are now over 10,000 ingredients commonly found in cosmetics and toiletries. Among these are a few thousand aromatic compounds used to perfume products—by the way, most products these days are anything but natural. More than a thousand of these substances have already been shown to produce toxic effects on living systems. Now here’s the BIG news: Far more important than the potential harm any single chemical can do is the dangerous way in which these chemicals can interact to produce far more toxic compounds within your body and, of course, the skin, which is your largest organ. OUTDATED SCIENCE So far behind the times are the methods used to check out the “safety” of chemical ingredients, that it’s likely to take decades before the depth of the chemical damage to which we are now exposed can become common knowledge. The outdated analytical methods still being used to identify carcinogenic chemicals, for instance, examine the effect of only one chemical on living tissue. This kind of research is at least 150 years behind what it should be. It’s based on 19th century toxicology, and as such, it takes no account of the dangers of mega-toxic compounds created by chemical interactions with one or another. Not to mention the pollutants in our foods, water and air. All of these chemicals—and others formed by reactions between them—contribute to mounting toxicity. They make our skins highly susceptible to rapid ageing. FOREIGN DANGERS Man-made chemicals are foreign to living systems, including our own skin and body. As such, they’re potentially dangerous to them. Why? Because, in a million years of evolution, our bodies have never come into contact with them. Our genes are simply not adapted to handle them. We don’t have the enzyme system needed to clear these chemicals from our bodies. And here’s the bad news: Included in the group of potentially destructive chemicals are hundreds—probably thousands—of common cosmetic ingredients, from artificial preservatives to fragrances. TOXIC OVERLOAD Chemical cocktails, to which our bodies are constantly exposed in cleaning products, toiletries, perfumes, makeup and skin care products don’t just remain on the surface of the skin. They are absorbed right through it. They interfere with the exchange of nutrients and oxygen to the skin cells, and with the elimination of wastes—an exchange regulated by subtle electrochemical energies. This results in a buildup of toxicity in the body, poor circulation and electrochemical stagnation, so that the skin’s cellular metabolism—and the transmission of important information and the regulation of hormones to keep it young and beautiful—break down. So much for the bad news. THE GOOD NEWS When cells thrive, and your skin is radiant, you have a high level of protection from aging. This happens when plenty of nutrients and oxygen get into your cells, and toxic wastes are efficiently and effectively removed. One way help this takes place is to go for self care and cleaning products that are safe. The second way is to stop eating massive amounts of convenience foods, riddled with grains, cereals, sugars and junk fats. Of course this is what most people still eat. Then they wonder why their skin ages rapidly. The good news is this: There are some wonderful new skincare products just being introduced. These are not only organic in nature, they contain none of the nasties you will want to steer clear of. BUYER BEWARE Unfortunately, most cosmetic manufacturers still pay little attention to the effects that these chemicals can exert on the body and on health in general. Here are some of the most widespread chemicals commonly used in makeup, skincare and toiletries, and which you need to be aware of. Parabens: Heavily used preservatives in the cosmetic industry, used in an estimated 13,200 skincare products, makeup, and toiletries. These are the most common synthetic preservatives. They show up on labels with names like butyl-paraben, methyl-paraben, and propyl-paraben. Naïve cosmetic manufacturers insist that parabens are “safe”, because they don’t directly cause inflammatory reactions to skin. But what these enzyme-inhibitors do is cause damage to the DNA of skin cells. This is something easily verified by feeding placebos to live cells in a laboratory, then recording what happens to them. Research carried out in Germany, Britain and Japan also indicates that parabens—which we absorb in significant quantities day in, day out—are likely to be a causative factor in male infertility problems and breast tumors in women. Sodium Lauryl or Lauryl Sulfate (SLS): Also known as Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES), which is found in some 90% of personal care products. They tend to attack your skin’s important ability to retain moisture, leading to premature aging and, in many, dry skin. Since they are very easily absorbed into the body when you put them on your skin, they actually give easy access to other chemicals that you are better off without. Isopropyl alcohol (SD-40): This is a drying and irritating solvent which disrupts the skin’s immune protective barrier, making it more vulnerable to invasion by microbes and to penetration by other destructive chemicals. It also promotes the formation of irregular pigmentation and age spots. Coal tar dyes (FD&C color pigments): These are common synthetic colors made from coal tar. They can contain heavy metals to pollute the body and deplete it of oxygen. They can also be carcinogenic. Coal tar dyes are major culprits in skin reactions, and they engender skin sensitivity. Dioxane: Often hidden in the list of ingredients, and called such things as polysorbates, PEG, and laureth ethoxylated alcohols. These chemicals are easily absorbed by the skin and are carcinogenic. This was discovered back in 1965 and later confirmed by a number of studies, including one in 1978 by the National Cancer Institute in the US. Artificial fragrances: Lots of chemicals used to make artificial fragrances are known to be both toxic and carcinogenic. They can affect the central nervous system, triggering emotional disturbances and behavioral problems in some people. This is a wide group, the majority of which is dangerous—in no small part because of the solvents used to disperse their molecules and to suspend these complex organic chemicals in solution. MAKE YOUR CHOICE Does this mean you should never again slick on that yummy lip gloss? Or that you need to toss the light-as-air cream you just bought into the bin? Not necessarily. What it does mean is this: It’s time to become aware of the dangers of toxic overload to your own system, and take action to minimize it happening to you. It’s also a good idea to cleanse your system through a very gentle but effective detox a couple of times a year. You might, for instance, choose to use the lipstick or a favorite mascara—but search for a shampoo with a natural saponifier, like kumerhou or soap wort. And forget the foaming bath lotions—use Epsom salts instead. It is important not to take, on trust, cosmetic and skincare manufacturers’ assurances that everything they put into their products is perfectly safe. It just ain’t true. ORGANIC ALTERNATIVES A growing number of conscientious companies are striving to formulate products without potentially dangerous ingredients. Some of these products are excellent. Others, although they may have been conceived out of a genuine wish to produce good, safe skincare and makeup, fall short on effectiveness and aesthetic appeal. Just like organic wines—which can be wonderful— but simply because a wine is organic does not make it beautiful to drink. Delicious organic wines rely on chemical-free vineyards and the sophisticated skill of the winemaker who creates them. So it is with cosmetics. NEW GUYS ON THE BLOCK There are two brand new organic skincare ranges that are worth taking a look at. One of them, Gaiavita…From Nature to Beauty With Love, is an excellent range that has just appeared. I have tried their products and they are effective and delightful. Their products are not only produced from superb-quality organic ingredients, the company has a powerful commitment to supporting transformation in business and on the planet, which I find inspiring. Gaiavita offer luxury health and beauty products using the purest ingredients in preparing rejuvenating skin creams and clay body masques. Do take a look at them. GaiaVita's ethos is derived from core principles of responsibility, integrity, transparency and quality...all of which I love. They have created luxury skin and body products which are not only uncompromising in their ethics but are delicious to use... and they do the job for which they are intended. The founders have a vision of forming partnerships with other women’s organizations dedicated to empowering women to become everything that they want to be. Their skin care and body treatments contain only the purest ingredients. This range is formulated in Hungary with great care and is certified by Hungaria Biokontrol as 95% organic. All in all I feel that GaiaVita is inspiring, delicious and effective. Do take a look at it…perhaps I should say take a feel of it...I suspect you’ll come to like it as much as I do… The second new organic skincare range comes out of Dr Joseph Mercola’s stable. Mercola believes that it’s important to use only ingredients that promote healthy appearances without causing potential harm. His products are certified organic, which means that they are all natural agricultural products grown and processed according to the USDA’s national organic standards, then certified by the USDA-accredited state and private certification organizations. I have a lot of respect for Dr Mercola, however I have not yet tested the Mercola organic skincare range myself. I will be doing so within the next month. It relies principally on specific natural substances such as sea buckthorn oil, cupuaco butter, and even Acai berries. My reservations about the Mercola range—and this may change once I have experimented with them—is this: Just as I have never trusted anybody to tell the truth about weight control when they have never been overweight and don’t have any idea what people who have been struggle with, I have reservations about a skincare range put together by a man who understands little about the nature of the process. I know this sounds sexist, but my experience in skin care and cosmetic is a long one. Among other ranges I have worked on, I conceived and created the Origins range for cosmetic giant Estee Lauder. I believe that you must have the experience of women to create a skincare range that is effective, delicious to use and wonderful. Hopefully, testing out Mercola’s products will prove me wrong. MERCOLA’S RANGE FAILS Alas, my concerns about the Mercola skincare turned out to be well founded. The range is indeed organic however, having tested the products now, I cannot recommend them. They smell pleasant but are in my opinion ineffective. They are also badly packaged and priced far to high. They brought no improvement to my skin and added nothing to its care. My advice is to stay away from them altogether... just because some ingredients are organic says nothing about what they can or cannot do to care for your skin and this range brings can do little or nothing for you. I DO NOT RECOMMEND THIS RANGE IN ANY WAY. For more information about GAIAVITA click here For more information about MERCOLA’s SKINCARE RANGE click here

Skin Inside

Skin Inside

It should go without saying that first-rate nutrition is a must. All the nutrients your body needs for optimum health, your skin needs to keep it young and beautiful, including the vitamins, minerals, proteins, essential fatty acids, trace elements, and unrefined carbohydrates. Next time you are in the supermarket, take a look at the skin of the woman in front of you and note what she has in her shopping basket. Almost invariably, you'll find that people with beautiful skins are buying lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, while the others have their carts chock-full of refined goods: white flour, sugar, and other industrially prepared goodies. Proper elimination is also essential for skin health and beauty. You need a diet high in natural fiber, or roughage, from raw vegetables and/or whole grains. Finally, don't forget to drink plenty of water, an essential nutrient you may never have thought of. Water helps detoxify skin, dissolving hard debris that interfere with proper circulation and removal of wastes which can cause cellulite. You should get at least six to eight big glasses a day for the sake of your skin. vitamins for beauty Some vitamins are particularly vital to the look and health of the skin. Vitamin A, for instance. If you do not have enough of it in your diet this can bring about dry, scaly, and crinkled skin. Without adequate vitamin C, the collagen fibers in the dermis suffer damage. A lack of one or more of the B complex vitamins can result in redness, tenderness or ulceration around the corners of the mouth. Vitamin E, is vital to skin health and beauty too. Dry, rough, etched, or tired-looking skin often improves when vitamin E is taken in supplementary form. Like vitamin C, vitamin E plays an important role in holding back the skin's aging process, because of its antioxidant properties. Some of the fatty acids such as GLA from borage oil or evening primrose oil, and the fish oils (EPA) and (DHA) taken as supplements have shown themselves to be very helpful in countering a tendency to dry and aging skin too.

A Benevolent Bath

A Benevolent Bath

Allow an hour for the whole process of taking a delicious treat of a bath from beginning to end. Make sure you have everything you need - towel, loofa or hemp glove, and another towel to use as a headrest. Add essential oils to the water as the bath is filling, using about ten to fifteen drops total of either a single essence or of a mixture for a large bath. Each essence has a different effect on the mind and body (see below).  When you get into the bath, gently scrub yourself all over with a hemp glove or a loofa. Then just relax and soak for a few minutes, letting the heat penetrate your muscles.  Keep a cool cloth nearby to smooth over your face when needed. Let the essential oils work their wonders while you carry out a relaxing and waste-eliminating self-massage.  Water is the perfect medium for self-massage. The heat (remember not to have your bath too hot and stimulating) of the water works silent wonders, and it supports your body so that you have easy access to feet, legs, arms and torso while still remaining relaxed. When your bath is finished, lie down for ten minutes with an eye mask or a piece of dark fabric across your eyes and keep warm. the massage message Self-massage is nothing more than stroking, kneading, pushing and pressing your skin and muscles. Start with your feet. Grasp one foot between thumb and fingers and press in between the tendons, gently at first, then harder and harder, moving from the toes up towards the ankle. Then, using your fingertips and knuckles, go over the soles of your feet. Wherever you find a sore spot, work harder until you feel the discomfort melt beneath your hand. Now do your heel, grasping it between thumb and fingers and working around the area of the Achilles tendon. This is also a good time to make circles with your foot to loosen the ankle joint. Repeat this with the other foot, and then go on to your legs. Lift each leg in turn and deeply stroke the flesh on the back, from the ankle up to the knee. Then go back to the ankle again and repeat the same motions on the side and front of the calf. Keep working and, as you massage a little deeper with each stroke, you will gradually find that any tautness softens. Now go over your thighs with the same movement, and afterwards knead and squeeze around the knee area wherever there are trouble spots, just as you did on the feet. Now knead each thigh and hip. Then go on to your arms. Knead and squeeze every spot you can reach on your shoulders and neck, looking for sore spots and focusing on the areas between joints and muscles. Pay particular attention to the tops of shoulders, where most of us lock away our tension. Grasp this area in your thumb and fingers and insistently ease away any hardness you find there. Finally, go over your ribs, doing each side with its opposite hand. essence alchemy As part of the benevolent bath, choose essential oils not so much for what they can do for your skin as what they can do to expand your consciousness and lift your spirit. Whatever your mental state may be, it has an enchanting antidote from the world of flowers: Negative State Essential Oil Remedy anger: ylang ylang, rose, chamomile resentment: rose sadness: hyssop, marjoram, sandalwood mental fatigue: basil, peppermint, cypress, patchouli worry: lavender feeling jaded: neroli, melissa, camphor feelings of weakness: chamomile, jasmine, melissa irritability: frankincense, marjoram, lavender, chamomile physical exhaustion: jasmine, rosemary, juniper, patchouli anxiety: sage, juniper, basil, jasmine

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/

Nature's Finest Treatment

Nature's Finest Treatment

What is Nature’s most powerful healer? The answer will surprise you: WATER applied to your skin’s surface. Would you consider pouring a stream of cold water over your face to banish fatigue and prevent skin from wrinkling and sagging? Would you walk in ice-cold water up to your knees every morning to increase your vitality and ward off aging? Have jets of cold water directed against your back and legs to help you shed fat? Extraordinary as these practices sound, they are natural methods of treatment with over a century and a half of clinical validation behind them. They are part of one of the most elaborate, effective and well-researched European methods of healing, health enhancement and age-retardation in the world: Kneipp therapy. KNEIPP’S GENIUS Applications of hot and cold water have long been standard treatment for regenerating energy, curing headaches, improving lymphatic function, and even eliminating hangovers after a night of partying. In no small part is this thanks to the pioneering work of Father Sebastian Kneipp, a Bavarian parish priest who strengthened his own less-than-hearty health with water treatments. In 1855, Kneipp was sent to the tiny Bavarian village of Worishofen to supervise a Dominican nunnery. Many of his friends insisted that the church had only sent him there to get him away from his fascination with water-healing, in the belief that it was interfering with his clerical life. There he acted as father-confessor to the nuns, revived the village's stagnant economy, and advised farmers on how to improve their agriculture. But Kneipp’s fascination with health and healing prevailed when later he was made parson of the village. Despite the fact that his days were filled with ecclesiastical duties, he found his time increasingly taken up by a growing number of ailing people who had heard of his ‘miracle cures’, and either didn’t have enough money to pay for medical care, or had been given up as ‘hopeless’ by their physicians. Kneipp treated them with his water techniques. He then taught them to treat themselves, gradually developing a complete system for prevention, cure and rehabilitation based on the theory that a human being is a unity of body and soul, and that whenever this unity is threatened, or whenever the harmony of nature is disturbed, illness ensues. As far back as 1900, Kneipp's water therapy was being practiced all over Europe. Since then, his methods have been researched, applied, refined and adapted to contemporary needs by medical scientists—most of them German—who have established the basis of Kneipp’s water techniques worldwide. AMAZING BENEFITS Still little known in English-speaking countries, Kneipp therapy is practiced in some seventy spas and thousands of hospitals in Europe. Treatments are supervised by physicians highly trained in the various methods it involves, the most important of which is a complex set of water applications which have profound regenerative and protective effects on the body. Far from being some kind of far-out alternative therapy used only by nature freaks and old women, Kneipp hydrotherapy is supported by government health-insurance schemes in Europe, and even subsidized by the state both as a preventative treatment against aging as well as a means of curing and rehabilitating the seriously ill. Kneipp therapy is used in many applications—from affusions, where water in a steady stream is poured over specific parts of your body, to hot and cold compresses—as a treatment for conditions from arthritis, abscesses and heart disease to asthma, diabetes and allergic eczema. All of Kneipp’s methods greatly increase your vitality, can enhance athletic prowess, help you handle stress better, banish insomnia, and counteract a myriad of negative effects connected with the aging process. SECRETS OF HYDROTHERAPY This is the secret of using cold water applications on your body. You need to be warm to begin with, and you must keep warm and dry afterwards. Contact with cold water in these circumstances first causes constriction of the blood vessels, momentarily driving the blood inwards. Then, the moment it is stopped, blood rushes to the surface of the skin, warming it. THE PRINCIPLES Not every water treatment has to be administered by a professional in a clinic or a spa. One of Kneipp's most important principles was that hydrotherapy should be simple enough that any healthy person can benefit from it—as a prophylactic treatment against aging, to improve the condition of the skin, to eliminate stress and to treat minor ailments from a headache to a cold without professional help. Simple at-home water treatments fortify your body against sickness in general, improve circulation and calm frayed nerves. FOR GREAT SKIN An affusion is literally a pouring of running water over a particular area of the body. Affusions stimulate blood supply to the skin, restoring lost tautness and freshness to sagging or faded skin. It is a popular natural treatment in Europe amongst men and women who want to retain (or reform) their youthful good looks. It helps prevent premature aging of the skin, eliminate feelings of fatigue and can even cure a migraine. Here's How Make sure your body is in a well-warmed state to begin with. Then, using a hose with an opening of about ½ inch (it can be a bathroom hand shower with the head removed) turn on the cold water so that a sheet of water is delivered to the skin when the hose is held 2-4 inches from it. (There should be no great pressure of water.) When an affusion is done right, the water flows smoothly and evenly and with no `splashback'. Now, resting your neck on a towel and bending over a sink or the bath, begin by circling your face with the water from just below the temple. Then go back and forth from one side of the face to the other. Guide the stream several times from up to down starting at the left side and working towards the right. End by circling the whole face again. The entire process is done with cold water and should take only a couple of minutes. Pat your face gently to remove excess water and then let it dry completely in the air. TO BOOST VITALITY AND STRENGTHEN IMMUNITY There are several techniques designed to increase vitality and bring protection against illness and age-degeneration. Which you choose depends on your current state of stamina and health. They range from the body wash, which is gentle enough for almost anyone, to the cold Blitzguss, which top athletes and other very fit people favor. The Body Wash This is quite different from the usual cleansing wash you carry out in the bath or shower using a flannel. It involves the uniform spreading of water over your skin with a rough linen cloth. Afterwards you do not dry yourself. Instead get into a warm bed for a few minutes. It helps relax the body while bracing and strengthening it. It also activates natural warmth, eliminating and protecting you from the build-up of toxic substances in the blood and tissues which can cause cellular damage and age-related problems. Here's How Having dipped the linen cloth into cold water, begin on the back of the right hand and sweep upwards over the shoulder then down again on the inside to the thumb. Now turn the cloth over and wash the inside of the hand and arm to the armpit, and finally the back of the palm. Dip the cloth in water again quickly and carry out the same movements on the other arm. Then, quickly dipping the cloth in water again, with half a dozen vertical movements wash over the chest, abdomen and the fronts of legs. Another dip and do the back (or have a friend help here since it is easier). Finish your body wash by quickly rubbing the soles of the feet. The whole procedure (which must be carried out in a warm room) needs to be very quick (only thirty to forty seconds). Then remove excess water from your body's surface, dress warmly and move about, or get into a warm bed for a few minutes. This is a superb way of refreshing yourself after a long day before going out for the evening. WATER TREADING This takes a couple of minutes. In Bad Worishofen there are beautiful pools at the clinics and hotels and even in the woods, where you can take off your shoes and socks and walk barefoot in water every morning, summer and winter, even when there is snow on the ground. If you are lucky enough to live near the sea or by a brook, both are ideal. But you can get the same results at home using a bath filled with cold water. Here's How Dressed warmly, but with your legs and feet naked from the knee down, step into the water and `walk on the spot', lifting first one foot and then another up out of the water. The reaction will be either a pleasant warm feeling flooding the feet or a sharp cold ache, followed by warmth. Begin by treading water for only thirty seconds or so, then work up to a couple of minutes as your system gets stronger and more resilient. Immediately afterwards put on dry warm socks and shoes and move about. (By the way, this is also an excellent treatment for insomniacs when done just before going to bed.) BLITZGUSS A real Blitzguss has to be done by a professional in a special shower using a powerful water-force. But you can get many of its beneficial effects in the shower, particularly if you happen to have a hand-held shower which you can direct on to different parts of your body. This is something I do every morning after exercising. Here's How Take a warm shower until your skin is glowing with the warmth. Turn off the hot water and use only cold, directing it over your face, down your arms and legs, over your trunk and abdomen and down your back. This process should take no more than thirty seconds. Get out of the shower, pat off the excess water and dress warmly. This will leave your skin glowing with warmth, thanks to the reaction against the cold water. Practiced every day or so, it will also strengthen your immune system, not only against age-degeneration but also against colds, flu and other illnesses. Blitzguss greatly increases vitality. This is a favorite of top athletes in Germany. It is also my favorite of all the prophylactic treatments with water—and I am a long way from being a top athlete. But I had to work up to it in the beginning by starting with the body wash and with water treading (which I still do when I feel tired but unable to sleep). It’s best not to use Blitzguss until you are already quite strong. DE-STRESS FOR BETTER SLEEP The next two techniques are particularly good if you feel stressed or you tend to wrestle with insomnia at the end of the day. Wet Socks A favourite of Kneipp himself, this is an easy way to apply a foot compress. It is extraordinarily relaxing. Here's How Wet a pair of cotton socks in cold water and wring them out so that they are no longer dripping. Put them on and then cover them with a pair of dry woolen socks, then get into bed. Leave the socks on for at least half an hour, although it doesn't matter if they stay on all night should you fall asleep. Once you begin to experience some of the extraordinary benefits from these simple treatments, you may find you want to explore some of the other natural therapies which are also carriers of vital information for health and ageless aging. They include air baths, saunas and Turkish baths, herbal treatments using the adaptogens and dry skin-brushing. Not only can each one of them leave you feeling vibrantly well and looking good, together with good nutrition, exercise and relaxation, they are some of the means by which your body/mind/spirit can restore balance and help keep you well, youthful and vital, long after those around you have succumbed to the ravages of time.

How To Tap Your Explosive Energy

How To Tap Your Explosive Energy

For generations European experts in natural medicine and top athletes have been masters at using hydrotherapy to vitalise, restore strength, regenerate and rejuvenate the body. Yet few of us anglo-saxons have been privy to their secrets. It’s time you learned about them. You’ll it once you do. Hydrotherapy is a powerful external tool for rejuvenation. The Germans are masters of it. Thanks to the electrical properties of water, using alternate hot and cold water on your body can alter the electrical charges of its molecules in the body—particularly the low-level voltages which regulate lymphatic drainage—by alternately increasing and decreasing them. In physiological terms this opens up your capillaries increasing blood flow and helping to stimulate the elimination of wastes through your blood and lymph systems. It also relaxes and tones muscles and heightens your overall vitality. Hydrotherapy - Blitz guss Hydrotherapy in one form or another is a must both for helping to prevent cellulite and for restoring cellulite-riddled tissues to normal. It enhances circulation, eliminates stored wastes, increases energy exchange on a cellular level and even heightens immunity. The best water treatment for cellulite is the traditional German Blitzguss. The classic Blitz Guss needs to be done by a professional but you can get much of the same effecta and benefits in the shower yourself at home—especially if you have a hand held shower which you can direct on different parts of your body. Here’s what to do Take a three minute hot shower so you skin is really glowing. Then turn off the hot and immediately turn on the cold water so it flows on you face and down your shoulders and arms, your chest and belly and back then down your legs but for no more than 30 seconds. Now go back to 2 to 3 minutes of hot shower followed by 30 seconds of a cold then back to hot again and so on. You repeat this process three times, always finishing off with 30 seconds of cold water. If 30 seconds seems a daunting length of time in cold water at the beginning only do 15 seconds of cold followed by 2 to 3 minutes of hot three times finishing off with cold. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you want to adapt to the full 30 seconds I suspect. When you get out of the shower, dry yourself briskly with a thick soft towel. The main reason you always finish your Blitz Guss with cold is that this stimulates warmth in your skin and whole body. It will surprise you just how warm and enlivening this experience can be. which leaves you glowing with life. How Good You Feel Once you get used to your Blitz Guss protocol you are you’re going to be surprised at how good you feel and how vital. Never do a Blitz Guss just before bed or you more likely to feel so energetic that you can’t sleep. And, of course, if you have a pacemaker or any sort of heart issue or other condition it is essential that you check with your health practitioner and get his or her OK before you try it. Be brave and give it a go. I thik you’re going to love the experience.

Leslie Kenton’s Cura Romana®

Fast, Healthy Weight Loss

Leslie Kenton’s Cura Romana® has proudly supported 18,000+ weight loss journeys over the past 13 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 18th of September 2021 (updated every 12 hours)

-0.71 lb
for women
-1.05 lb
for men
-0.71 lb
for women
-1.05 lb
for men

Yesterday’s Average Daily Weight Loss:

on the 18th of September 2021 (updated every 12 hours)

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