Natural Beauty: Why is This Approach to Beauty Worthwhile?
Every day we use lotions, potions, and cosmetics to make us look, smell and feel better, but what if those same products are actually making us feel worse. Pure Natural Diva shares a couple of the reason she is SO passionate about choosing natural & organic personal care products.
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Americans spend 5 Billion a year on juice and fruit beverages according to Mintel Market Reasearcher. The marketing machine behind this billion dollar a year business has done a great job selling us on the nutritional benefits of juice. Plus, it’s sweet and tastes good, so not much selling required for children.
Juice is yummy… it really tastes good. I’ve heard many a mother state their child just won’t drink water – yet we wouldn’t hand them a martini if they wouldn’t drink their milk or water. OK that might be a bit extreme, but you get my point.
Fruit juice offers no nutritional benefit for infants younger than 6 months.
Fruit juice offers no nutritional benefits over whole fruit for infants older than 6 months and children.
Yet – the academy continues to recommend juice as an acceptable part of children’s daily diet – albeit in limited quantities. With all of the other risks (read on) with juice – I can’t help but wonder whose interest they are protecting in continuing to support the “juicing” of America.
Type 2 diabetes has TRIPLED from 1980 to 2006. Aside from the 185 increased risk in Type 2 diabetes which seems compelling enough to eliminate juice as a staple in our family diet. There are a number of other findings that need to be shared.
Juice & Lead
Apple juice, grape juice, packaged pears and peaches (baby food included), and fruit cocktail – organic and conventional – have been tested with higher than acceptable levels of lead. Confusing to many who thought going organic would protect them, it turns out that orchards have been sprayed for over 100 years with Lead Arsenate and they only have to cease spraying for a few years to obtain organic certification. The number of years it will take years eliminate the lead from the soil and fruit remains to be seen.
Juice & Arsenic
Top brands of apple juice were recently tested in Florida, and over 25% of the samples tested were found to have concerning levels of arsenic. To be fair arsenic is a naturally occurring in our food supply. That said, the juices tested at 25-35 ppb and while the FDA has no official policy for lead in Juice, they have one for water – 10 ppb. With this information it seems fair to say that if you drinking or giving your child apple juice, there is a 25% chance you are giving them more than double the lead that the FDA deems acceptable in water. With no “official” juice policy there are no established guidelines, so products can’t be pulled or recalled for containing high amounts of lead. 25% Chance.
“Of particular interest to OJ drinkers will be the revelation that most orange juice comes from Brazil, not Florida, and that even “not from concentrate” orange juice is heated, stripped of flavor, stored for up to a year, and then reflavored before it is packaged and sold.”
Do you eat oranges? Ever notice how they all taste a little different? There are sweet juicy oranges, tart oranges, dry oranges, they are all different. Ever notice how your favorite orange juice tastes the same, day in, day out, without seasonal variation?
“Now “orange essence” and orange oil is squeezed out of the peels and reprocessed by the flavor enhancing companies. The so-called natural orange juices is flash-pasteurized, then “de-aerated” so that it won’t oxidise, stored in huge tanks, re-aerated, repasteurized, and re-enhanced with “flavor packs” to taste what they think it should have tasted like. In Brazil, they are building huge aseptic supertankers to carry the stuff around the world.”
“They’re technically made from orange-derived substances, essence and oils. Flavor companies break down the essence and oils into individual chemicals and recombine them. I spoke to many people in the industry at Firmenich, different flavorists, and at Tropicana, and what you’re getting looks nothing like the original substance. To call it natural at this point is a real stretch.”
The Juice Solution
But – We Really Love Juice! And don’t want to completely Eliminate it From Our Life!
On the lead, arsenic, and diabetes front I can’t offer a lot of help – aside from homemade smoothies using real organic fruit. Even if the fruit was contaminated – the concentrations would be lower. Until the Organic Orchards have been pesticide free for many years, clearly these toxins will be a problem.
Orange Juice Solution
If you want to avoid the “tanker juice” – look to your expiration dates to guide you – if it expires in 6 weeks – you now what you are actually buying.
Look for juice that will expire within 5-10 days – chances are it has not been through this process and you’ll be getting what you would expect from the label “freshly squeezed juice.”
Don’t be fooled by the “extra premium” lines like Naked Juice. They have extended expiration dates, are ultra pasteurized, and in the case of the naked brand – owned by Pepsi - and other very large companies known for employing these processes.
Remember Juice is a 5 Billion Dollar Annual business – don’t buy into the marketing.
Green juices made with Real Fruit and Veggies are a better choice – they help kids learn to LOVE their green!
Squeeze your own juice using organic oranges.
One Last Plea
Lastly, with all the “engineering” of flavors that is going on with juice my question is: How does real fruit even stand a chance with our taste buds? When pitted against these test tube “natural” juices. I believe the more juice we consume, the less real fruit will appeal to our taste buds. Real fruit will have a difficult time competing with engineered perfection.
When people look at me sideways when I say that I don’t give my children juice -I will do my best smile politely and try not to jump on my soap box.
Note – Dude does give the children juice. We’ve compromised on it being a weekly or bi-weekly treat vs a daily part of their diet, and of course I always buy fresh squeeze that will expire in about a week.
This post is from Change Becomes Change – it resonated with me and wanted to share it with you…
When my first baby was born, I was often called a germaphobe – for very good reasons that I won‘t even attempt to deny. Before we even brought him home from the hospital, every sink in the house was outfitted with some sweet-smelling antibacterial soap from Bath n’ Body Works. Our diaper bag was filled with antibacterial wipes, along with both cars, all purses and the nursery. We encouraged the use of a bink at indoor play places like our children’s museum so that he couldn’t put germ covered toys or fingers in his mouth. And as he got older, we had our own little mats to put down at restaurants (after scrubbing the high chair, table and other surfaces with the wipes!).
We didn’t do half of those things with my second baby, and we rarely use an antibacterial wipe now. Why? What’s changed? A couple things.
It seems more and more important that we stay informed, get involved, buy local produce whenever possible from the farmers and wash, wash, wash what you buy from the market!
The Short Version:
Fruits and vegetables are packed on pallets for shipping, turns out the industry is moving towards using more plastic pallets, turns out a bunch of these pallets contain Deca a chemical linked to Cancer, Brain and Reproductive Disorders in animal studies.
What is Deca?
Deca is a Flame Retardant that is added to plastics to prevent them from catching fire at high heats.
Question: How does the Deca get from the pallets onto our fruits and vegetables?
In preparation for shipping produce is hydro-cooled. Stacks of pallets containing produce are submerged in supercooled water, or have water dripped on top. The water is then recycled, raising the concentration of Deca in the water and increasing the likelihood of contamination.
General Mills, Borders Melon Company, PepsiCo, Cott, Okray Family Farmsand Martoni Farm are currently using plastic pallets. While Dole Foods and Kraft Foods are considering making the switch.
As a result of public health concerns officials in Maine and Washington State have restricted the use of Deca and 10 other states are proposing bans this year.
Canadian and European officials have banned the use of Deca in electronics. It seems clear that Deca should come nowhere near our food supply and yet, at the moment, it is much too close for my comfort.
You may not want to read this. I almost wish I hadn’t.
The article from the NY times shares the story of Stephanie Smith a dance instructor left paralyzed from the waste down after E-Coli from a hamburger made her sick in 2007.
It was eye opening to learn more about how ground beef is often made and what increases our risk for exposure to E-Coli. I might have to watch my beef be ground after reading this story!
A few excerpts…
“Ground beef is usually not simply a chunk of meat run through a grinder. Instead, records and interviews show, a single portion of hamburger meat is often an amalgam of various grades of meat from different parts of cows and even from different slaughterhouses. These cuts of meat are particularly vulnerable to E. coli contamination, food experts and officials say.”
Further… in regard to the E-Coli incident in Stephanie’s story…
“The ingredients came from slaughterhouses in Nebraska, Texas and Uruguay, and from a South Dakota company that processes fatty trimmings and treats them with ammonia to kill bacteria.
Using a combination of sources — a practice followed by most large producers of fresh and packaged hamburger — allowed Cargill to spend about 25 percent less than it would have for cuts of whole meat.
Those low-grade ingredients are cut from areas of the cow that are more likely to have had contact with feces, which carries E. coli, industry research shows.”
Historic plans are in place to reform the federal toxic chemical controls.
The principles of the reform has initial support from environmentalists, federal and state lawmakers. Additionally - The America Chemistry Council (ACC), The Grocery Manufacturers Associations and the Consumer Specialty Products Association are also supporting the new measures.
The key areas being addressed:
Reviews of chemicals in light of safety standards, without cost-benefit analyses that have opened loopholes for dangerous chemicals;
Consideration for vulnerable populations, especially children;
New EPA authority to require chemical manufacturers to provide hazard, use and exposure data on new and existing chemicals and to act quickly when threats develop;
Adequate funding for EPA safety assessments and regulatory programs;
Priority for chemicals that pose higher risks to people and the environment, with clear deadlines and industry accountability;
This is a good piece that illustrates why we need to take action and get concerned about the food we are feeding our families and the food our children are being fed away from us.
By Robyn O’Brien – The Daily Green
Since when did it get so hard to be a mom? Ten years ago, we didn’t worry about sending a peanut butter and jelly sandwich into school with our children; we didn’t medicate our eight-year olds to get them through the school day; and the movie Rain Man was all we knew of autism.
Today it is estimated that 50% of Hispanic and African-American children will develop diabetes, that 1 in 90 boys has autism, and that 1 in 4 children has asthma. Pediatrics just reported that from 2002-2005, there was a 103% increase in diabetes medication for children, a 47% increase in asthma medication, a 41% increase in ADHD medication and a 15% increase in high cholesterol medicine.