Dangers of Chlorine in Drinking and Shower Water

Chlorine is a toxic chemical that has been used to disinfect drinking water supplies for nearly 100 years. It is economical and kills many bacteria including those which cause typhoid, cholera, and dysentery.

Unfortunately, it is also a poison that has many adverse affects on the human body. Chlorine reacts with naturally occurring substances, such as decomposing plant and animal materials, normally present in the water to create trihalomethanes (THMs). These THMs trigger free radical production in the body, are highly carcinogenic, and cause cellular damage.

Drinking chlorinated tap water may cause scarring of the arteries. Once the arteries are scared, LDL cholesterol can attach itself to the artery walls leading to arteriosclerosis and heart disease.

Cancer of the kidney, bladder, and urinary tract are more common in certain cities, because chlorine in excess of government standards is added due to the water supplies are so polluted.

For instance, Mississippi drinking water (taken from the highly polluted Mississippi River) contains approximately 63 carcinogenic compounds that are created when chlorine combines with pollutants such as methanol and carbon disulphide present in the water.

It is not uncommon for municipal water supplies to have chlorine levels higher than those recommended as safe for a swimming pool.

Drinking chlorinated tap water is only part of the problem. More chlorine is absorbed through the skin, and inhaled in the steam from one bath or shower than is taken in from drinking five glasses of tap water. The heat and steam from the shower opens the pores allowing a high rate of absorption of chlorine and other chemicals. Steam from a hot shower can contain up to 20 times the concentration of chlorine as tap water.

The inhalation of chlorine and other chemical vapors are a suspected cause of bronchitis and asthma. A report in the American Journal of Public Health links chlorine to increases in certain types of cancer, skin irritations and asthma and stated that "up to 2/3 of the harmful exposure was due to skin absorption and inhalation of chlorine in shower water."

The U.S. EPA recently stated, "Due to chlorine and showering, virtually every home in America has a detectable level of chloroform gas in the air". Chloroform is strong respiratory irritant.

Chlorine strips the natural protective oils from hair and skin, casing drying and aging. Skin can dry out and become itchy and flaky. Chlorine is also the biggest trigger of eczema - a group of skin conditions that vary from mild forms characterized by dry, hot, itchy skin to more severe forms where the skin becomes broken, raw and bleeds.

Other forms of water disinfection such as ozone and UV radiation are considered too costly for most large municipal water supplies. The good news is that just because chlorine is in the water coming from your tap, you don't have to drink it or bath in it! Affordable, high quality drinking water and shower filters are available.

Using quality water filters to remove the chlorine from your drinking and shower water makes good sense, and will protect you from potential health problems. [ Copyright © 2005 World Image Naturals™, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

How to Avoid Sickness When Traveling

Have you ever experienced a cold or the flu shortly after returning from a vacation or business trip? If so, you're not alone; it's a very common occurrence. Why do you get sick after traveling? It could be that you picked up a "bug" from those you visited, or (if you flew) perhaps you got sick from the poor quality of the air circulating in the plane. Furthermore, a change in your eating, exercise, and sleep routine may have lowered your resistance to illness.

You greatly increase your exposure to germs when you go on a trip. Consider the air that you breathe when you are confined with other sneezing and coughing travelers. Also, you're more likely to visit public restrooms when traveling which can expose you to a host of bacteria and viruses. Think of all those people with whom you shake hands or hug.

It's important to keep healthy habits intact, and to exercise added precautions when going on vacation or a business trip.

How to protect yourself from "bugs" when traveling.

Be sure to wash your hands frequently, and to avoid putting them in or near your mouth, nose, and eyes.

Bring your vitamins with you on your trip and take them daily. You may wish to consider taking Cat's Claw, to boost your immune system, a couple of weeks before you leave and up to a couple of weeks after you've returned. Increasing your normal intake of Vitamin C may also be a good idea.

Maintain your diet and exercise routine. Don't eat too much fast food. Consider what you will eat and how you will exercise, before leaving.

Air travelers may be especially vulnerable to germs, due to the close quarters and recycled air. Wearing a mask may make you feel somewhat uncomfortable; however, it's a good idea if your immune system has been recently weakened by an illness. Drink plenty of water before and during your flight. The air in the plane can be very dry, and it's easy to become dehydrated. If you must consume alcohol, be sure to drink extra water. The side-effects from alcohol are intensified at 30,000 feet, so headaches, bloating, and other maladies are not uncommon.

If you're traveling outside of the country, drink bottled water only - avoid ice. Don't forget to have extra bottled water on hand to use when brushing your teeth. Eat foods that have been well-cooked, and avoid street vendors if possible. Though the food may look good, the sanitary conditions may be less than desirable.

The next time you take a trip, take along this healthy advice so that all you bring back are happy memories.

Have a healthy trip!

Some Healthier Choices at Your Grocery Store

Here are a few changes you can make the next time you go grocery shopping, to improve your health.

Think Fresh

Buy fresh fruits and vegetables as much as possible. If you cannot find them fresh, chose frozen fruits and vegetables. If you buy canned fruit, make sure you get it packed in it’s own juice without added sugar or corn syrup.


Look for juices that are 100% juice. Many bottled and frozen juices contain more sugar than fruit juice. If you use a juicer, be sure to retain some of the healthful pulp. If possible, eat whole fruits for optimum nutrition.


Chose extra virgin olive oil or canola oil. Try an olive oil cooking spray instead of butter for cooking. Avoid margarine and lard.


If you drink milk, chose milk with a lower fat content. If you are already drinking 2%, switch to 1%, and eventually use non-fat milk.


Select whole grain breads rather than white.


Much of the food found in the grocery store contains hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils, high fructose corn syrup, MSG and artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. All of these ingredients are poor choices, and should be avoided whenever possible.

Many breads, cereals, soups, and boxed side dishes contain one or more of these ingredients. Take a little extra time to read the label, to find brands without these undesirable additives. For Example, Farmhouse brand makes rice and noodle side dishes without MSG or other additives, and Healthy Choice foods are generally free of unnecessary additives.

Discover healthier choices at your local grocery store. If your grocery store doesn’t have the brands or foods you want, ask the manager to consider stocking them. [Copyright © 2005 World Image Naturals, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

New Year's Resolutions and Goals for Health

It’s that time again - the beginning of another new year. A time when many people make resolutions about changes they would like to see in their lives. Unfortunately, for many, in less than a month's time most of the resolutions will become forgotten or ignored. New Year’s resolutions can be hard to keep, but sticking with them can improve your life.

Here are a few simple rules that you can follow when setting goals that will help you achieve them.

Be Specific

If your goal is to “get healthy” (lose weight...) think about the specifics the goal involves. How, specifically, will you change your eating habits to achieve better health?

For example, you might think "I will eat fresh fruit and vegetables every day, and will only eat dessert once a week. I will go to the gym three times a week for 45 minutes on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, and I will take a multivitamin and mineral supplements daily."

Put Your Goals in Writing

Once you have decided on your specific goals, write them down and post them somewhere you will see them often. Make them binding contracts that you promise to keep.

Set Realistic Goals

Be sure that your goals are within your means. Consider your schedule, finances, and other personal obligations and limitations when setting goals. The idea is to challenge not over-burden yourself.

Have a Plan of Action

Create a timeline with steps you will take to reach your goal. Failing to plan is planning to fail.

Be Positive

Surround yourself with positive influences. Read books about motivation and success. Share your goals with supportive friends and family members who will help you stay motivated. Avoid negative people whenever possible.

Be Prepared to Change

Don’t become discouraged if things go wrong. Anticipate that setbacks may occur. Use shortcomings or failures as important information to refine your efforts.

Reward Yourself

It's important to acknowledge your achievements. Give yourself a reward that makes you feel good or that you enjoy doing, when you have reached you goals. Be reasonable - don't let the reward derail your continued success.

New Year's doesn’t have to be the only time you set goals. Setting clear goals, year-round, can help you lead a healthier and more rewarding life.

Make this the year you follow through on your resolutions! [ Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

Help for Tired Aching Feet

Have you been doing a lot of shopping? Entertaining? Working? These types of activity can leave you with tired, achy feet.

As we age, the natural fat pad on the soles of the feet begin to thin. Placing an orthotic cushion in your shoes may help to compensate for your loss of natural cushion, and allow you to be on your feet longer (without as much pain).

Your feet have approximately 250,000 sweat glands, and can excrete as much as 8 ounces of moisture each day. Therefore, it is important to remember to drink plenty of water.

Keep your toenails trimmed, straight across, to avoid painful ingrown toenails Always wear shoes that fit properly.

If you overdo it and end up with swollen, tired feet, resting with your feet, elevated above your head, for 10 minutes will help to reduce swelling. Soaking your feet in warm water and bath salts or MSM will feel great. [Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

Sodium Laurel Sulfate & Sodium Laureth Sulfate

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) is an inexpensive detergent used in products such as shampoos, bath gels, cleansers, floor cleaners, carwash soaps, and engine degreasers. SLS is very corrosive to greasy surfaces. [Sodium Laureth Sulfate is a variation of Sodium Lauryl Sulfate that has a higher foaming quality, but shares many of the same characteristics as Sodium Lauryl Sulfate.]

SLS is a tissue irritant. It has been used widely in laboratory testing on humans and animals to irritate the skin, so that other agents could be tested to see how they affect the irritated tissue. Because of its irritating affect on the skin, SLS is classified as a drug when used in bubble bath products. SLS actually eats away the skin and may cause rashes (which could lead to infection).

SLS may react with other ingredients in skin products, forming nitrosamines (nitrates; cancer-causing agents). Studies have revealed that SLS penetrates (with prolonged retention) deep into the tissues of the eyes, brain, heart, liver, and other vital tissues.

SLS cleans by corrosion. It strips away protective lipids from the skin. It is believed to attack hair follicles which can cause hair loss.

Many alerts, including governmental, have been released about the dangers and/or negative affects of Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, yet it is abundant in many popular products.

Check your personal care products (soap, shampoo, toothpaste...), to see if they contain SLS. Decide for yourself if SLS is a good choice for your health.

Bright Advice for Protecting Your Eyes from Your Computer Monitor

Is Your Computer Hurting Your Eyesight?

Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) is a term used to describe eyestrain and tiredness stemming from using a computer (monitor). CVS is about 40 times more common than carpal tunnel syndrome.

It is estimated that 100 million Americans suffer from computer eyestrain. Our eyes respond well to printed material with well-defined edges that contrast from their background. Characters on a computer screen don’t have the same contrast or well-defined edges. They are brightest at their center and diminish towards the edges. Our eyes must constantly move and strain to focus on the screen creating fatigue, burning, and tired eyes.

Tips for Helping Your Eyes & Combating CVS

Pre-Existing Vision Problems

If you already have vision problems, you are more likely to develop CVS. You may want to get a pair of glasses designed for computer work if you have multi-focal lenses.


To avoid glare on your monitor screen, install blinds, shades or screens on your windows near your monitor, and use an anti-glare screen on your computer. Position your desk lamp so that it doesn’t shine on the computer screen or in your eyes.

Monitor Position

A common problem for many people is that the monitor is too high. The top of the screen should be at eye level. Use a copy stand if your work requires you to look back and forth from printed material to the computer. The screen should be at least 24 inches away from your eyes and your feet should be flat on the floor, back straight.

Air Quality & Hydration

Air quality in many offices is poor which may worsen dry irritated eyes. Drinking adequate amounts of water will keep you hydrated, and help to moisturize all your body’s tissues including the eyes.


Stretching and joint rotation exercises can be done sitting at your desk as well as eye exercises. A good eye exercise is to focus on a far object for 5-10 seconds and then focus on a closer object. People working at computers blink 5 times less than normal making eyes dry and irritated, so just blinking more can help.


Take frequent breaks. At least 10 minutes of every hour should be doing some activity that doesn’t require looking at the computer screen.


Caffeine can make it more difficult for the eyes to focus on the computer pixels. Eat a balanced diet including fruits and vegetables like carrots, spinach, broccoli, tomatoes, blueberries, cranberries and lemons. A good multivitamin and mineral supplement can help maintain proper eye health. [Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

Music Helps You Learn, Relax, and Heal

It has been known for centuries that music and sound can play a significant role in creating an environment that is conducive to healing, learning, and stress relief.

It's really quite simple, music helps create the mood and feelings that translate into creative energy.

Music makes us dance, relax, feel good, and even motivates us when exercising. How we feel or act depends on the type of music we listen to.

The power of music is used in major Hollywood movies to engage your emotions and mind with the story. Advertisers use it to entice you to buy their goods or services. Today, very small portable devices (MP3 players) exist that allow us to carry thousands of songs with us to listen to whenever and wherever we want. [Click here to get a a FREE Photo iPod portable music player.]

We all listen to music in one form or another. The questions is why? The answer is simple: it makes us feel a certain way. It provides an escape, an atmosphere, or feeling that we desire. If not, we wouldn't bother listening to music. Because it works, we continue to listen.

For further information on the powers of music, have a look at the following books:

The Healing Power of Sound : Recovery from Life-Threatening Illness Using Sound, Voice, and Music

The Power of Sound: How to Manage Your Personal Soundscape for a Vital, Productive, and Healthy Life

The Mozart Effect : Tapping the Power of Music to Heal the Body, Strengthen the Mind, and Unlock the Creative Spirit

[ Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

Tryptophan and Turkey

Tryptophan is one of the eight essential amino acids. Essential means the body cannot manufacture it, so it must be obtained from dietary means. A typical daily diet provides about 1-1.5 grams of tryptophan, making the least plentiful of all 22 amino acids.

Tryptophan is a precursor of niacin, and essential for growth and metabolism. Tryptophan helps the body produce serotonin (a neurotransmitter) and melatonin (a neurohormone). Serotonin is a calming agent that plays a role in sleep and reduces anxiety. Melatonin is a sleep-inducing hormone released by the brain's pineal gland.

Because turkey contains tryptophan, it is widely believed that post-Thanksgiving drowsiness is caused by tryptophan. However, experts say that the drowsiness is not likely from your turkey dinner. Because, tryptophan works best on an empty stomach when there is less competition from other amino acids. Drowsiness after a big Thanksgiving dinner is more likely due to a combination of overeating and alcohol consumption.

To obtain the benefits of drowsiness from turkey, it is best to eat it (exclusively) on an empty stomach. [See also: Importance of Sleep] [ Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

The Flu: Symptoms, Shots, & Treatment

What is the flu?

The flu, the common name for influenza, is a highly contagious respiratory infection caused by a virus. Viruses are the smallest form of life. Unlike bacteria, viruses can only reproduce in the living cells that they infect. Influenza causes nationwide epidemics every year. It is expected that 20-25,000 Americans will die from the flu each winter; another 100,000 will be hospitalized. Children, the elderly, and people with lung disease or other chronic conditions have a higher risk of complications from the flu. There are three different types of influenza viruses: type A, B, and C. Type A can infect other animals as well as humans. Types B and C infect only humans. Influenza C virus does not cause epidemics and only causes a very mild illness.

What are the signs and symptoms of the flu?

The flu is characterized by the sudden onset of a high fever (generally over 102 degrees F.; in children it may be over 104 degrees F.), a sore throat or cough, headache, chills, muscle aches, eye pain, lack of energy and possibly a runny nose. Symptoms generally last 3-5 days, but the cough and lack of energy can continue for up to two weeks. Vomiting or diarrhea are unusual in adults, but may be seen in children less than 6 years of age. The term “stomach flu” is a misnomer often used to describe gastrointestinal illnesses caused by organisms other than influenza viruses.

How do I know if I have the flu and not just a cold?

Colds are also upper respiratory infections caused by viruses and share many of the same symptoms as influenza. The flu, however, is a much more severe illness. The sudden onset of the symptoms (people often say they can “feel a cold coming on”) and the season are generally the hallmarks of the flu. The flu is generally contracted during “flu season” because the influenza viruses grow much better in cold weather. Decreased sunlight may also play a part. In the Northern hemisphere, the first outbreaks generally occur in October and may continue through April with the peak months being November through January. If you see a doctor, she or he may take a throat culture or blood test in order to rule out other causes of your symptoms.

How can I keep from getting the flu?

The safest and most effective defense against the flu, or any other type of illness, is a strong immune system. A strong immune system makes antibodies that kill viruses. Rest, regular aerobic exercise, and good nutrition, including foods rich in Vitamin C, are important to maintaining a healthy immune system. Eating dark green vegetables, red and yellow fruits, and yogurt is helpful. The beneficial bacteria in yogurt may stimulate substances in the immune system that fight disease.

Nutritional supplements such as Colostrum and Cat’s Claw may help stimulate the immune system. Teaching yourself to relax can also activate your immune system. There is evidence that relaxation increases the amount of interleukins (leaders in the immune system’s response against cold and flu viruses) in the bloodstream.

Most cold and flu viruses are spread by direct contact, so hand washing is extremely important. Germs can live on surfaces such as doorknobs or telephones for hours or even days. If a sink is not available, rubbing your hands together very hard for a minute or so will help break up some germs.

Don’t cover sneezes or coughs with your hand. If you have access to a tissue use that and then immediately throw it away. If not, turn your head away from people or use your arm rather than your hands to cover your nose and mouth. Since flu viruses enter the body through the eyes, nose, and mouth, it is important not to touch your face. Consider using paper towels and disposable cups at least during flu season.

Drinking plenty of water helps to flush poisons from your system while keeping yourself hydrated. You can determine whether or not you are drinking enough fluids by the color of your urine. It should be close to clear. Deep yellow urine signals a need for more fluids.

Saunas seem to help prevent the flu possibly because inhaling air hotter than 80 degrees is too warm for the viruses to survive.

Breathing fresh air is also very important. During the winter month’s people stay indoors more often. The combination of the dry air from central heating and close contact with others makes you more vulnerable to flu viruses.

Don’t’ smoke and limit alcohol consumption. Smoking or even being around second-hand smoke zaps the immune system. Smoke dries out the nasal passages and paralyzes the cilia that line the nose and lungs. The cilia “sweep” viruses out the nasal passages. Experts contend that just one cigarette can paralyze the cilia for 30-40 minutes. Heavy alcohol use can destroy or greatly impair the liver. The liver is the body’s primary filtering system. If it becomes sluggish, germs will not leave the body as fast. Avoid alcohol. It dehydrates the body, and it actually takes more fluids from your system than it puts in.

What about flu shots?

Flu shots or vaccines become available every fall. Because viruses can change and mutate very quickly, a new vaccine must be formulated every spring based on information gathered by the flu surveillance network set up by the World Health Organization. A flu vaccine is actually a dose of the virus that has been chemically deactivated. Injecting the deactivated virus stimulates your body to produce antibodies that can be used against the virus should you later become exposed to it. In order to produce flu vaccines, droplets of the virus are injected into and grown in chicken eggs. Drug companies use millions of eggs every year in order to produce adequate quantities of the vaccine. Because the virus for the vaccine is grown in eggs, it is recommended that anyone allergic to eggs avoid the vaccine.

Unfortunately a flu shot does not guarantee that you will not get the flu. Vaccine effectiveness varies from year to year and from one person to another. Also, the influenza vaccine, like any other vaccine, is capable of causing side effects such as severe allergic reactions. The most common side effect is soreness at the injection site that may last up to two days.

Generally healthy adults and children do not need a yearly flu shot. However, vaccination is recommended for certain groups who are at increased risk for complications that may arise from influenza:

    • Persons 65 years of age or older.
    • Persons of any age who have chronic medical conditions, including asthma.
    • Residents and employees of nursing homes or chronic-care facilities.
    • Children and teenagers who are receiving long-term aspirin therapy.
    • Women in their second or third trimester of pregnancy during flu season.
    • Persons with weakened immune systems due to conditions such as cancer or HIV.
    • Health care workers and family members of high-risk patients.

How can I treat the flu?

Often the best treatment for the flu is not to treat it at all. For generally healthy people, the body’s natural healing processes will work to combat the virus. The symptoms of colds and flu are part of the natural healing process. For example, a fever is the body’s way of trying to kill viruses by creating a hotter than normal environment. The hotter environment makes germ-killing proteins in the blood circulate more quickly and effectively. If you are able to endure a moderate fever for a day or two, you may actually get well faster. You can help the body direct its energy toward the immune battle by staying warm and resting under a blanket. Fever causes you to lose a lot of fluids, so drinking plenty of water is extremely important.

If you do not feel like eating, juices, broth, electrolyte solutions, and tea are good choices. Black and green teas contain catechins, phytochemicals purported to have natural antibiotic effects. If you do feel like eating, some good infection-fighting foods are: bananas (soothe upset stomach), bell peppers (vitamin C), blueberries (high in natural aspirin), carrots (beta-carotene), chili peppers (opens sinuses and helps breakup mucus), cranberries (helps prevent bacteria from sticking to cell lining in the urinary tract), mustard and horseradish (helps break up mucus), onion (phytochemicals), and rice (curbs diarrhea.)

Coughing helps to clear the breathing passages of mucus that can carry germs to the lungs. A gargle consisting of a teaspoon of salt in warm water can moisten the throat. A “tickle” in the throat may be relived by gargling with a tea containing tannin. Another popular gargle can be made by steeping one tablespoon of lemon juice or raspberry leaves in two cups of hot water; mix in one teaspoon of honey, and let cool to room temperature before gargling.

Even a stuffy nose can be beneficial in that it warms the infected area and helps carry germs out of the body. It is important to gently blow your nose often to help remove the germ carrying mucus. A salt-water nasal rinse will help break up the congestion and remove virus particles. A popular salt-water rinse recipe is to combine ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon baking soda with 8 ounces of warm water. Hold one nostril closed and squirt the solution into the other nostril using a bulb syringe 2-3 times. Repeat on the other side and let it drain. A steamy shower will also moisturize your nasal passages and help to relax you. Sleeping with an extra pillow may also help to relive congested nasal passages. Other suggestions include placing a hot or cold pack around the congested sinuses, or applying a small dab of mentholated salve under your nose. This can open breathing passages. Menthol, camphor, and eucalyptus all have mild numbing ingredients that may relieve the pain of raw nose.

Symptoms of the flu may be confused with other more serious conditions; therefore, it is wise to seek medical help if:

    • Your fever lasts for more than 3-4 days or if it comes back after if has been gone for 1-2 days.
    • Your cough becomes wheezy or rapid, you are having trouble breathing, or you are coughing bloody or yellow-green mucous.
    • If you smoke, and your condition worsens or you have any chronic illness, such as asthma, cancer, compromised immune system, diabetes, kidney, or blood cell problems you are at greater risk for complications and should seek medical attention.

What about antibiotics or prescription drugs?

Antibiotics are of no use for influenza because it is caused by a virus. There are four prescription drugs currently being used to treat the flu. Two have been available for a while and two are new. The older drugs, amantadine (Symmetrel) and rimantadine (Flumadine) interfere with the reproductive cycle of the type A influenza virus. They are not effective on Type B viruses. The new “flu drugs” or antiviral agents are used to treat both type A and Type B viruses. They are called Neuraminidase Inhibitors and are known as zanamivir (Relenza) and oseltamivier (Tamiflu). Tamiflu is administered in pill form. However, Relenza requires a special inhaler. These drugs help stop the influenza virus from replicating and have been shown shorten the duration of flu symptoms. Treatment must be started within 48 hours of the onset of symptoms and continues for 3-5 days. Unfortunately, as with any prescription medications, these drugs may cause unwanted side effects. The most common side effects of zanamivir are diarrhea, nausea and sinusitis. With amantadine and rimantadine side effects may include, headache, dizziness, insomnia, irritability, trouble concentrating, and anxiety.

[Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

Acne Cause & Acne Treatment

What causes acne?

Acne is caused when an oily substance (sebum) becomes blocked at the skin surface. Sebum is normally released through the pores to help keep the skin lubricated and healthy.

There is a number of things that can block the normal flow of sebum and cause acne (blackheads, whiteheads, pimples, zits, tender red bumps...). Dead skin, bacterial, hormones, excess oil, bad dietary habits, drugs (anabolic steroids...), toxins, and poor skincare may all contribute to the proliferation of acne.

What can be done for the prevention and treatment of acne?

- Use water-based makeup; avoid oily and heavy makeup.
- Eat low-fat and non-processed and non-refined food; avoid junk food
- Take time to relax and get adequate sleep; avoid becoming over-stressed
- Avoid restrictive, friction-causing clothing, hats during exercise...
- Drink adequate amounts of water (especially when exercising).
- Take a multivitamin with vitamin A (helps control over-production of sebum).
- Take Cat's Claw (anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and boosts immune system).
- Gently wash face (don't scrub) to remove excess oil and cleanse pores.
- Shower after sweating from work or exercise; use a gentle exfoliating wash.
- Do not pick or squeeze blemishes -- it will make it worse (larger, scars...).

Products of Interest

Cat's Claw (Uncaria Tomentosa; Una de Gato) - Reduces inflammation; anti-bacterial; boosts immune system.

Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) - Reduces inflammation, excellent for skin, and helps remove toxins from the body.

Murad Acne Care - Acne Body Wash

Murad Acne Care - Clarifying Body Spray

[ Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

Dangers of Low Carb Diets

Yes, you can lose weight by avoiding carbs. In fact, you can lose weight by avoiding any type of food - fat, protein, or carbohydrates.

To shed pounds, one need only burn more calories than one consumes. It is that simple! There is no secret - though there are consequences.

Starving one's self to lose weight is not advisable. Avoiding or dramatically reducing any essential part of nutrition is counterproductive to health. A great-looking body is not of much good if you're health is poor.

Avoiding carbs is a form of starvation. The body needs a proper balance of carbs, fats, and proteins to maintain optimum health. Any one of these building blocks of nutrition can be bad for you, if they're not the right type.

There are good carbs and bad carbs. Good fats and bad fats. Good protein and bad protein. The solution is not to avoid any of these, rather to consume the right kinds - that are nutritious and healthy. We all know that saturated fat is not good for us, but we do not avoid all fats because some are bad. Good fat is a vital part of health.

Likewise, we should not avoid good carbs such as those found in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains simply because there are bad carbs (e.g. processed and sugary foods).

Carbohydrates are the body's main source of energy. Certainly, the body will use other sources of energy (e.g. fat) if it is deprived of the preferred carbs. Carbs provide the best source of cellular energy (life) - particularly for the brain and nervous system.

The answer to weight loss and optimum health is not to avoid or drastically reduce carbs, fats, or protein. Just avoid junk foods (refined, processed...) and exercise (burn the calories).

The low-carb diet may temporarily shrink your body (and perhaps your wallet from all the so-called reduced carb products), but it can also be dangerous to your health. The diet is just another marketing scheme and distraction from the simple truth for maintaining proper weight and health - eat good (non-processed) food and exercise.

For more information on weight loss, request a copy of "8 Effective Weight Loss Strategies" at worldimagenaturals.com.

[Editor's Note: The well-known Atkin's Low-Carb Diet has finally discovered some of the truth about carbs and health, and have decided to change their approach to carbs. The Atkin's people have learned that it is better to evaluate carbs by their glycemic index, rather than avoid them.]

[Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com]

Aluminum & Your Health

Small amounts of aluminum entering the brain can be toxic and cause terrifying illnesses. Why should this concern you? Is aluminum getting into your brain?

There are many aluminum-containing products on the market which can be potentially harmful to your health. The following is a list of products that may contain aluminum [alternatives are listed in brackets] :

Aluminum cookware, utensils, and aluminum foil [use stainless steel cookware]
Antacids [use digestive enzymes and make dietary changes]
Anti-inflammatories OTC [use Original-MSM]
Antiperspirants [use natural deodorants]
Baking powder [use natural alternatives]
Beverages in aluminum cans [use bottles]
Bleached flour [use 'whole' flour products]
Dental amalgams [replace]
Douche [use natural recipes]
Grated cheese and various commercial cheeses [avoid]
Municipal treated water (tap water) [use purified water]
Nasal spray [use natural alternatives]
Over-the-counter pain medications (e.g. aspirin) [use natural alternatives]
Shampoo [use natural shampoo]
Table salt [avoid; use sea salt]
Tobacco (smoke) [avoid]
Toothpaste [use natural toothpaste]

Aluminum toxicity can cause a variety of debilitating symptoms and health problems including: anemia, bone softening, calcium deficiency, colic, decreased liver and kidney function, gastrointestinal disturbances, headaches, memory loss, muscles pain and weakness, nervousness, rickets, and speech problems.

Researchers suggest that there is link between aluminum toxicity and neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's disease, dementia, Parkinson's disease, speech difficulties, and staggering or loss of balance when walking. Even behavioral problems among schoolchildren have been associated with an increased level of aluminum.

Select the products that you use very carefully. Aluminum-containing antacids and antiperspirants should be of particular concern, since these are most often used. Read the product labels and avoid those which contain aluminum or aluminum compounds (e.g. dihydroaluminum). [Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals™, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

Importance of Sleep

Many people have come to think of sleep as a luxury that can be cut back on to make time for other “more important” daily activities without much consequence. However, research seems to indicate otherwise. It is impossible to be in truly good health without getting adequate sleep on a regular basis. Cutting back from the standard eight hours of sleep to four hours of sleep for just one week produces striking changes in glucose tolerance and endocrine function resembling the effects of advanced age or the early stages of diabetes.

Chronic sleep loss may speed the onset or increase the severity of type–2 diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, and memory loss. Researchers in Australia suggest that sleep loss can be similar or worse than drinking too much alcohol. Staying awake for as little as 18 hours affects the body much the same as drinking alcohol to the legal limit. Sleep depravation plays a part in 2 out of 3 auto accidents in the US.

Many body organs are able to rest and recover during quiet relaxation, but the cerebral cortex of the brain that coordinates higher nervous activity is only able to recover during sleep. For the brain, the early part of sleep is the most important. The immune system is also greatly affected by sleep. With proper sleep, it can speed recovery from infections, prevent accidents, and ward off potential heart attacks. The adrenal system does the majority of it recharging and recovery between the hours of 11:00pm and 1:00am. The gallbladder also dumps toxins during this time. If you are awake, the toxins can back up into the liver and cause further health problems.

To get a good night sleep:

Go to bed and get up at the same time every day. Get a bare minimum of 7.5 hours each night. (For many people, up to 9 hours is optimum.) You should be able to wake up without an alarm.

Your sleeping area should not be too warm. Not more than 70 degrees F. is best.

Make the room as dark as possible. This is especially important if your work schedule requires you to sleep during the day. Use as little light as possible if you must get up to use the bathroom.

Warming up cold feet may induce more restful sleep. Wearing socks or using an old fashion hot water bottle may help if you have trouble falling asleep.

Avoid alcohol before bed. Alcohol will keep you from falling into the deeper stages of sleep where the body does most of its healing. [ Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals™, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

Importance of Fresh, Clean Air

Fresh, clean, outdoor air is “alive” with a combination of both positively and negatively charged oxygen atoms. Indoor air that is reticulated through air conditioning and heating systems becomes polarized, containing only positively charged ions. Indoor air pollution from carpeting, paint, upholstery, wallpaper, ceiling tiles, and hundreds of other synthetic products, release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) such as formaldehyde and benzene into the air making it even more unhealthy.

Fresh air refreshes the cells, lowers body temperature, improves lung functioning, improves the sense of well-being and kills bacteria and viruses in the air. High concentrations of negative ions are essential for high energy and a positive mood. In nature, negative ions are generated by tumbling water, like the ocean surf and waterfalls and though electrical thunder and lightening storms.

Unfortunately, most people spend about 90% of their time indoors, often with windows that are sealed shut, breathing very little fresh air. If you are stuck indoors most of the time, there are some things you can do to “revive the air you breathe.

1. Get a room ion generator and keep it in the room you spend the most time in.

2. Take breaks outside in the fresh air whenever possible, and open windows whenever it is practical to do so.

3. Have indoor plants throughout your house and in your workplace. NASA scientists have discovered that many houseplants are able to extract volatile organic chemicals from the air thus filtering out toxins as well as providing a constant source of oxygen.

4. Installing a decorative indoor waterfall will generate some negatively charged ions that will help to purify and recharge the air.

Take some time out to get fresh air, regularly! [ Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals™, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

Care for Your Skin: Clean, Tone, and Moisturize

Keeping the skin clean and preventing moisture loss is critical. Men have larger pores and their skin is approximately 15% oilier skin than women’s skin, so daily cleansing is just as important for men as it is for women.

Cleansing products should be as chemical-free as possible. Never use soap on your face. Holding a medium hot wash cloth on the face immediately before cleaning will open pores and make deeper cleaning possible. A good cleansing scrub will remove dead skin cells and smooth the surface of the skin. Avoid scrubs that contain ground bits of nuts or seed extracts. They will damage or tear the skin.

Toning helps keep the skin clear and firm. Astringents and toners with glycolic or alpha hydoxy acids work best for toning the face. They can actually reduce pore size and help prevent ingrown hairs. Look for a product that is not photosensitive (sensitive to light).

The moisture content of the skin is brought into balance through two processes: adding moisture from the outside through the application of a moisturizing agent and by retarding the loss of moisture already in the skin. Moisture loss is retarded by replenishing the fatty materials normally found in the skin that are removed by contact with soap, other detergents and the outdoors.

For an intensive moisture treatment use pure vitamin E, or aloe vera oil. These are available in liquid form, or in capsules that can be broken open and applied directly to the skin. This is great under eye treatment. The under eye area is one of the first places to show age because the skin under the eyes secretes no oils on its own. Vitamin C lotions help to fade brown spots by suppressing the production of the skin pigment melanin. It may also boost collagen levels, helping to soften fine lines. If you chose a commercial moisturizer, be sure to find a product that is alcohol-free.

There are thousands of skin care products on the market and choosing those which are right for you can be challenging and expensive. Fortunately, there are also recipes available to help you mix up your own products using ingredients you probably already have in the kitchen. Check with your favorite bookstore for a book that will help you make natural skin products. [Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals™, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

Dangers of Aspartame

Aspartame is the main ingredient found in branded additives such as NutraSweet®, Equal™, and Spoonful™. It is made up of aspartic acid, glutamate, phenylalanine, and methanol.

Over 75% of the adverse reactions to food additives reported to the FDA are from aspartame. Reactions reported include: headaches/migraines, nausea, abdominal pains, fatigue, sleep and vision problems, anxiety attacks, and asthma/chest tightness.

Aspartate and glutamate act as neurotransmitters in the brain. Too much of either can kill certain neurons by allowing too much calcium into the cells triggering excessive amounts of free radicals (bad cells). These substances are referred to as “excitoxins” because they stimulate or “excite” the neural cells to death. Seventy-five percent or more of the neural cells in a particular area of the brain are killed before symptoms of chronic illness are noticed. A few of the illnesses that have been shown to be contributed to by long-tern exposure to excitatory amino acid damage include: Multiple Sclerosis (MS), ALS, memory loss, hormonal problems, hearing loss, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, hypoglycemia, AIDS, dementia, brain lesions, and neuroendocrine disorders.

Phenylalanine is an amino acid normally found in the brain. Those people with a genetic disorder called phenylketonuria (PKU) cannot metabolize phenylalanine. Ingesting aspartame can lead to high (sometimes lethal) levels of phenylalanine in the brain. Many people who do not have PKU, but who have eaten large amounts of aspartame over a long period of time, have been shown to have excessive levels of phenylalanine in the blood. High levels of phenylalanine in the brain can cause serotonin levels to decrease, leading to emotional disorders such as depression.

Ten percent of aspartame is methanol (aka wood alcohol). Methanol breaks down into formic acid and formaldehyde in the body. Formaldehyde is a deadly neurotoxin and a known carcinogen that causes retinal (eye) damage, birth defects, and interferes with DNA replication.

In addition to being used as a tabletop sweetener, aspartame is found in over 5,000 food and beverage products such as low-calorie diet drinks and desserts, cocoa mixes, cereal, breath mints, chewing gum (sugarless), powdered fruit and tea drinks, and even toothpaste. [Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals™, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

Sunscreen Dangers

In recent years, we have been bombarded with reports on the dangers of the sun, and the need for sunscreen to protect ourselves from skin cancer. Sales of sunscreen and products containing sunscreen have skyrocketed; yet the incidence of skin cancer in the U.S. has tripled in recent years.

Being concerned about skin cancer is valid; however, most sunscreen products can do more harm than good. Some sunscreen products contain toxic chemicals that penetrate the skin, and can actually increase the risk of disease. Chemicals you may wish to avoid include: PABA, Dioxybenzone, Oxybenzone, and Titanium Dioxide. [If you insist on using sunscreen, consider a safer, natural sunscreen product.]

Another major problem with sunscreen is that is blocks the skin’s ability to make vitamin D by more than 95 percent. Vitamin D is important for strong bones, proper calcium absorption, proper cell growth, and a healthy heart. There is a strong association between increased blood levels of vitamin D and decreased risk of many forms of cancer. Sun exposure is the best way to make sure you get adequate vitamin D. The body automatically regulates vitamin D intake, so don’t worry about too much vitamin D from the sun. This doesn’t mean unlimited sun exposure is good – it’s still important to protect your skin from burning.

Stay out of the sun when it is the most intense. There are many articles that indicate the sun is most extreme during 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m., but this data is heavily dependent upon where one lives (e.g. Alaska or Arizona). Use shade, hats, and clothing to protect yourself if you are outside for extended periods or when sun is intense.

Eat more fresh vegetables and berries to increase your antioxidant level which helps protect your skin naturally. Studies on vitamin C have demonstrated that it offers protection from UVA radiation. Be sure to take a vitamin C product that contains bioflavonoids and is additive-free. Grape Seed Extract is another powerful antioxidant, which may be far more effective in combating free radicals (unstable molecules) which are created from over-exposure to UV radiation. [Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]