What are you feeding your skin?

Whenever you use those skin care products, fragrances, and cosmetics, you are feeding your skin.  The question is what?

I hope  that you’re making it a habit to read the ingredients  on food and beverage labels to reduce your intake of unhealthy ingredients.  Are you reading the ingredients on your personal care products?  When you put product on your skin, it gets absorbed into your bloodstream!

So many personal care products use parabens as preservatives.  These are known endocrine disruptors, can affect hormonal balance, and parabens have been found in human breast tumors!  There are many types of parabens (ethylparaben, butylparaben, isobutylparaben, isopropylparaben, methylparaben, propylparaben, etc.), and you can find them in shampoos, conditioners, lotions, body washes, and face cleansers. Look for paraben-free or preservative-free products.

Triclosan is another endocrine disruptor often used in soaps, hand sanitizer, and toothpaste.

Some preservatives actually release formaldehyde when applied to the skin, and formaldehyde has been linked to cancer!  These  formaldehyde-releasing preservatives are used in many personal care products, including shampoos, liquid baby soaps, nail polish, eyelash and nail glues, hair gel, hair-smoothing products, body soap and wash, and  cosmetics.  Some of these ingredients:  diazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea, DMDM gea

Avoid the UV filters octinoxate and oxybenzone, commonly found in sunscreens, liquid foundations, and some shampoos.  These are endocrine disruptors.

How about that seemingly innocuous ingredient “fragrance”?  It’s sort of like the word “natural flavors” on your food labels.  What does it really mean?  Fragrance could be any number of synthetic chemicals found in any number of personal care products, especially perfumes, colognes, body splashes, and air fresheners.  Buy fragrance-free products, and use essential oils instead of synthetic fragrances.

Some other ingredients to be wary of:  petrolatum, petroleum jelly, paraffin oil, and mineral oil.  Petroleum is used to fuel automobiles, and if not fully refined, it may be contaminated with toxic chemicals.  Mineral oil used on babies has been found to make it more difficult for them to absorb minerals, because it coats the lining of the digestive tract.

Lip balms and lipsticks may contain petroleum, mineral oil, and even lead!  That kiss could be leaving more than just a lipstick print!

Watch out for coal tar, which is a known carcinogen and may cause neurological damage.  It’s often found in shampoos, soaps, hair dyes, and lotions.

Remember, it’s the accumulation of toxins over time that can weaken your health, especially if you’re already dealing with a health issue.  Think about where you are applying those personal care products:  on your scalp (brain), on your face (sinuses), on your neck (thyroid), wrists (veins), abdomen (digestive tract, liver), chest (lungs), back (kidneys), knees (joints), etc.!

To learn more, visit www.safecosmetics.org.

Keep learning to be healthy!

Lisa Hernandez, Certified Nutritionist & Natural Health Consultant

www.learningtobehealthy.com

1 Corinthians 10:31–                                                                                                                   “Whatever you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for God’s glory!”

www.facebook.com/learningtobehealthy

www.pinterest.com/healthywithlisa

This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease.  It does not take the place of any medical care that you may need. Consult your health care provider about making dietary and lifestyle changes that are right for you.

 

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Calcium and vitamin D are inadequate without vitamin K2!

Supplements can be confusing, because the body needs balance to be healthy, and too much or too little of any nutrient can prevent a healthy balance.  Eating whole foods, as close to their natural state as possible, is the first key to addressing dietary deficiencies and excesses.  They are naturally balanced in nutrients by our Creator.

The processed standard American diet has left us sadly deficient in many nutrients, including calcium, vitamin D, and vitamin K2.  Ouch!

Even though we may be consuming foods fortified with calcium and vitamin D, or taking the recommended daily amounts of calcium and vitamin D in supplemental form, studies indicate that heart disease and bone loss aren’t going away.

The short version:  We take calcium in through diet and/or supplementation.  Vitamin D is needed to absorb calcium from the digestive tract into the bloodstream.  Vitamin K2 is a catalyst for moving calcium from the bloodstream into the bones.  Without vitamin K2, the calcium never makes it!

Important:  Vitamin K2 also breaks down excess calcium in the arteries, which can build up and cause atherosclerosis.  Studies indicate that this buildup may result when blood calcium is not being moved into the bones, due to vitamin K2 deficiency.

Bottom line:  Calcium and vitamin D supplements can be helpful for preventing bone loss when sufficient vitamin K2 is available to move calcium into the bones.  If not, vitamin D allows more calcium to be absorbed into the bloodstream, where it it can contribute to hardening of the arteries.  It’s a paradox!  What you may be taking to build strong bones could possibly be contributing to heart disease, the number one killer!

Of course, we can’t leave out magnesium, which is essential for the absorption and metabolism of vitamin D (see www.nutritionalmagnesium.org), and vitamins A and E are also important for regulating calcium balance.

Don’t confuse vitamin K1 with vitamin K2.  We’ve known about K1 for a long time and it’s importance for proper blood clotting, but information on K2 is just recently gaining ground.

Some top food sources of vitamin K2 include chicken and egg yolks from pastured chickens raised on a free-range diet; organic cheeses like gouda, brie, and cheddar; butter and beef from grass-fed cows; and sauerkraut.

Natto has the highest amount of all.  It is made from fermented soybeans and contains a protein-digesting enzyme called nattokinase, which has been used in supplemental form for cardiovascular health.  Studies have also confirmed that eating natto is associated with improved bone density, even more than other soy foods.

As a supplement, a natural source of vitamin K2 is Menaquinone-7 (MK-7) from natto, 120 micrograms or more a day.  If you are allergic to soy, you may have to take the synthetic source, Menaquinone-4 (MK-4), 1,500 micrograms, three times a day, because it doesn’t remain active in the body for more than a few hours at a time.  To enhance absorption, it’s best to buy vitamin K2 in a soft gelatin capsule or an oil-based liquid, since it is fat-soluble.

If you are taking blood thinners such as Warfarin, consult your doctor before adding foods or supplements with K2 to your diet, as these medications are meant to block the action of vitamin K.  It has been reported that patients on oral anticoagulant therapy were able to take up to 50 micrograms of MK-7 per day without it interfering with the effects of the blood thinner.

Now you know!

Keep learning to be healthy!

Lisa Hernandez, Certified Nutritionist & Natural Health Consultant

1 Corinthians 10:31–“Whatever you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for God’s glory!”

www.learningtobehealthy.com

www.facebook.com/learningtobehealthy

www.pinterest.com/healthywithlisa

This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease.  It does not take the place of any medical care that you may need.  Consult your health care provider about making dietary and lifestyle changes that are right for you.