The Maids of Portland, Maine

Monday, November 28, 2011

Hormone Disruptors in Canned Food: New Worries

Many canned fruits and vegetables are packed in cans lined with Bisphenol A , a plastic that is a known hormone disruptor. As you may remember, a couple of years ago, BPA was in the news a lot: reports had been surfacing , for example, that the chemical leaked from plastic baby bottles into breast milk. Studies were emerging that consistently linked the chemical to breast and testicular cancer, as well as a host of reproductive problems. A handful of states became so alarmed that they banned the chemical outright ( though, frustratingly, often only from products that wound up in baby's mouths).
Should We Be Worried?
Studies confirm what health and consumer advocates have been saying for years: there are too many synthetic toxins in too many everyday products; there is too little known about these toxins; and there is too little information about any of it for consumers to make intelligent decisions. It has become impossible to shop your way out of our toxic world.
So What To Do?
Noting that the CDC has discovered 212 chemicals " coursing through Americans' bodies," Senator Frank Lautenberg ( D-NJ ) has once again introduced a bill that would update- for the first time in 35 years- the federal Toxic Substances Control Act, the law overseeing chemical regulation. Under Lautenberg's bill, the EPA would survey the 80,000 chemicals in use today, only 200 of which have ever been adequately tested for their impact on human health. Chemicals the EPA considers risky would be required to be tested further. Rather than assume their products are safe, companies would have to prove it. This has been the model in Europe for years.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Enjoy the Juicy Health Benefits of the Pomegranate

Winter is on its way, and with that we're faced with a new lot of produce to enjoy. Amoung the many to choose from is pomengranate. Although the health benefits of pomengranates are impressive, the Federal Trade Commission has had to step in to remind us that the fruit is not a cure-all or quick fix, as many are over-selling its benefits. Consuming pomegranates offers a lot to your body nutritionally, but they certainly won't provide any miracle cures.
* Pomegranate seeds and juice provide ample amounts of:
* Vitamin C
* Vitamin B5
* Potassium
* Fiber
* Variety of polyphenols
We need more scientific studies to confirm the following list of benefits, but until then, add pomegranate or its juice to any wintry day for a healthy treat!
Heart Health: Pomegranate lowers cholesterol and blood pressure. It also prevents plaque build-up and dangerous clots in the arteries.
Men's Health: When consumed daily for at least three months, pomegranate juice may combat erectile dysfunction.
Dental Health: Just as pomegranate prevents plaque in the circulatory system, it prevents dental plaque as well.
Joint Health: Inflammation is reduced by compounds found in pomegranate. Although this isn't a cure for arthritis, it can help alleviate the symptoms.
Cancer Treatment: Scientists suspect that the regular consumption of pomegranate could not only prevent cancer, but it could also increase the effectiveness of cancer treatment. Breast, prostate, skin and lung cancer were amoung the types studied.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Achoo! Cold and Flu Facts

Headache, scratchy throat, clogged sinuses- cold and flu season is here! Aren't you thrilled? Below find some cold and flu facts offered to you from The Maids:
a.} One sneeze sprays tens of thousands of wet germs into the air at speeds of 80 to 100 mph-as forceful as a hurricane, nearly four times faster than a cruise ship but not as fast as the Space Shuttle, which can do 0 to 17,000 mph in 8 minutes.
b.} Germs may survive 10 hours or longer on hard surfaces such as cell phones, keyboards and TV remotes, and an hour or more on porous surfaces such as fabric. On your hands germs stick around for about 30 minutes- less if you wash your hands with soap and water.
c.} Even tap water works better than ammonia for killing rhinovirus, the most common cause of colds. But your best choices are liquid bleach diluted with water or a disinfectant spray containing o-phenylphenol and alcohol.
d.} To keep colds away, aim for 8 hours of sleep per night- anything less and your chances of getting sick increase. There's nothing to the feed-a-cold-starve-a-fever thing, but warm liquids can help soothe the symptons.
e.} Antibiotic medications do nothing to fight the viral infections that cause the cold and flu. They only work on infections caused by bacteria, such as strep throat.
f.} Flu shots take about 2 weeks to kick in and typically protect you for 6 months to a year. Each vaccine protects against 3 strains of flu most prevalent in a particular year.
g.} Evidence suggests that moderate excercise helps fight off colds and flu. Staying indoors won't protect you- and besides, fresh air is good for you. Ignoring symptoms is a bad idea. Rest, and be patient-you'll feel better soon!

Five Reasons To Drink Lemon Water In The Morning

Lemons are truly one of the most beneficial and amazing fruits on Earth. The many minerals and vitamins is nothing compared to the live enzymes this popular fruit contains. When telling others about the benefits of lemons I forego the obvious things like the high amounts of Vitamin C, the antibacterial qualities, and so much more. The most amazing thing about lemons is that the live enzymes, which die shortly after being cut, actually boost the impact that the vitamins and minerals have on your body! Check out these benefits...
~*~ It balances pH--Lemon is an acidic food, but once metabolized, it becomes alkaline. I work very hard at keeping my body alkaline. Why?To put it most simply, alkalies help keep the oxygen in our blood at a safe pH level, and this helps our body heal itself, assimilate nutrients and fight off unwanted sickness.-Nicole BennetI have read of many people who have fought their cancer nutritionally by focusing on the body's pH levels. Kris Carr, of Crazy Sexy Cancer has halted tumors growing in her liver for over 7 years by focusing on nutrition, including alkalizing foods. I think that is crazy cool. Even a little crazy sexy cool!!I regularly check the pH of my body using these little pH strips. I now know what foods --GREENS!--will keep my levels where they need to be. I also believe lemon water helps this process.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Olive Oil as a Home Remedy

~*~ Olive oil is one of the most beneficial products on the market, which should not be a huge surprise. However, there are some things you may not know about olive oil. Not only is it a wonderful addition to our diet, it also has amazing bebefits forn our health! The uses we are listing below do not call for direct consumption of the oil, so we do not recommend buying the most expensive oils out there.
... Cure A Earache: A lot of people swear that olive oil will cure an earache. We are not so sure, but we do know it will make it feel a lot better. Carefully use a cotton swab to apply the oil to the outside of the ear cavity.
... Help Soothe a Burn: Many people love aloe vera juice and so do we, but if that is not available olive oil works just as well. Cool the burn off with cold water and apply the oil every hour or so. In a couple of days the burn should be gone or a least a lot better.
... Polish Leather, Wood and Even Metal: Use two parts olive oil to one part lemon juice to polish wooden furniture. You can also use plain olive oil on conditioned leather to revitalize it and give it a nice shine, but be sure to wipe away excess oil after about 30 minutes.
... Make Your Own Exfoliate: Simply combine some sea salt and some olive oil and use as an exfoliate. Your skin will show a healthy glow and you are bound to save money by making your own!
... Fix Squeaky Doors: You can use olive oil instead of chemical or petroleum based lubricants. Simply apply oil to the hinges and around them.
... Care For Your Cat: Add a teaspoon of olive oil to help prevent hairballs as well as promote a healthy and shiny coat.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Avoiding Toxic Toys Isn't Child's Play

~*~Parents know how to protect children from dangers like small toys that can be choking hazards and dangling, frayed electrical cords that can cause shock. But what about the dangers you can't see, like lead in the paint of brightly colored blocks or the chemicals in a plastic sippy cup? Here are the latest toy safety guidelines you should be aware of.
>Toxic Toys: Get the lead out...
According to George W. Shannon, MD, a family physician in Georgia who is on the board of directors of the American Academy of Family Physicians, parents should be most concerned about protecting their children from paint that contains lead. "The government agencies that help us in the U.S. can supervise overseas manufacturers, but you may want to avoid buying toys [made] overseas because lead paint can be a problem," warns Dr. Shannon.
New rules from the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) are further cracking down on products that contain lead, especially limiting the amount of lead that's permissible. A new law is requiring that U.S. toy makers and importers certify that kids' products meet the stricter safety rules and the ban on lead. But beware of thrift stores and consignment shops that resell older toys: They aren't required to give the same certification. You might also want to throw out any older toys in your home, especially those with chipping paint.