Recent Posts




A Peek Inside the Natural Mom’s Hospital Bag

Filed Under: Aromatherapy,Baby and Child Health,Green Living,Women's Health at 6:33 pm | By: Jessica Justh, Senior Editor
leafmamaCalling all mamas to be! Does it seem like you’re spending as much time figuring out what to pack in your overnight hospital bag as you have been researching pediatricians and creating elaborate stroller comparison spreadsheets? There’s a lot of information out there and everybody seems to have an opinion on what classifies as “must brings”.

Besides the obvious staples like toiletries, comfy clothes and an outfit for your little one, if you’re like me and planning a natural birth, there’s a whole lot more to think about. After attending hours of workshop and seminars from doulas and midwives, here a list of must-haves to help you on your labor journey.

Magnesium Oil – Makes a great labor aid by relaxing the muscles. This stuff will definitely come in handy during contractions. Have your doula or birth partner gently massage some magnesium oil into your skin during labor.

Honey Sticks – Labor has been compared to running a marathon, so you need to maintain your stamina for the long haul. The sweet honey stick helps by giving you a sugary burst of energy to power you through the valleys of a natural birth. If you’re delivering at a hospital with strict restrictions around food and drink, honey sticks are even more crucial since they’re considered a liquid!

Lavender Essential Oil – Not only does this essential oil smell great but its therapeutic benefits will help you relax, too, which is vital during labor. Lavender has also been found to reduce headaches and backaches too!

Coconut Water – You wouldn’t run a marathon without downing plenty of water on the way, would you? In labor, hydration is key! Coconut water is a natural isotonic – simply put, it helps quickly replace lost fluids — loaded with electrolytes.

Protein Bar – After your baby is born, chances are that you’ll be very hungry. Ravenous, even. If you deliver during the middle of the night, the hospital cafeteria will likely be closed, so plan ahead and bring a couple of protein bars along with you. Your body will need to replenish itself after all the hard work.

Ginger – No one wants to be nauseous or vomiting during labor, but it happens. Be prepared with some of ginger candies. Ginger has been shown to be effective in preventing and easing nausea. Plus, the sugar will give you some added energy when you’re feeling down.

Birth Ball – There’s a ton of pain management techniques for labor but a birth ball is a definite. It’s versatile and can be used in different positions to help turn and move your baby down the birth canal. During early labor, rocking and bouncing can decrease back pain.

Good luck with your natural birth. If you have an amazing birth story we’d love to hear from you!


The Importance of Beauty Sleep

Filed Under: Beauty,Personal Care,Women's Health at 7:00 am | By: Mauricio Matusiak, Senior Editor
SSHow much sleep do you need? Experts say most people require between seven to nine hours of sleep in order to maintain good health. However, not just enough sleep but also good, deep sleep is very important to prevent a variety of health issues such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, depression, and skin problems.

The term beauty sleep, which refers to the act of sleeping early to maintain healthy, beautiful skin, is definitely a reality for many people around the globe. Sleep repairs tired skin and research has shown that the whole body goes into repair mode when you sleep.

While you sleep, your skin renews itself as new skin cells grow and replace older cells. In addition, during your sleep, a number of hormonal and metabolic changes happen in the body and a good number of these changes happen in the skin and lack of sleep can significantly disrupt those processes. For example, lack of sleep causes blood vessels to dilate, causing the look of dark circles. It can also increase stress levels, consequently making you tired, angry, sad, and increasing the chance of premature wrinkles.

If your main concern is skin care, three easy tips can make a big difference for you. First, follow a beauty regimen with a cleanse before going to bed using a mild or exfoliating cleanser as well as a moisturizing cream, preferably a night cream. Second, avoid smoking, alcohol and heavy eating in late hours not only to prevent skin issues but also to improve overall sleep. Lastly, it is highly recommended that you establish a good sleep habit, going to bed and waking up around the same time every day.


5 Products Every Women Needs in Her Medicine Cabinet

Filed Under: Herbs,Supplements,Women's Health at 4:53 pm | By: Jessica Justh, Senior Editor
medicineCollagen – Look your best and age beautifully with collagen. One of our favorites is derived from pasture-raised collagen protein. Unlike gelatin, these peptides are soluble in cold liquids as well as hot. Enjoy a scoop in your morning coffee and feel beautiful from the inside out. Did we mention that collagen also increases elasticity and regeneration of tendons, cartilage, bones, and joints? You better believe it!

Probiotic – By now most people know that taking a daily probiotic is one of the biggest keys to maintaining maximum gut flora health. But what you may not know is that they are also one of the best supplements for women in regards to urinary and vaginal health. Bacteria such as Lactobacillus species, as well as the strain Bacillus coagulans help keep the pH level in these regions slightly acidic making it difficult for yeast and “unwanted” bacteria to thrive.

Daily Vitamin – Ahh, the great vitamin debate. Do you need one? The answer is yes. Today, a majority of conventional food is grown in poor soils that lack essential nutrients. Therefore if we’re not getting vital nutrients from food, then we NEED to take vitamins. A daily, one a day formula is an easy way to get complete energizing support in one capsule specifically design and formulated for a women’s chemistry.

Red Raspberry Leaf –  Red raspberry leaf can help relieve PMS symptoms such as cramping, irritability, and depression. That’s all well and good, but the leaf is most commonly known for its effects in helping maintain a healthy pregnancy. A favorite herb amongst midwifes, red raspberry leaf  is reported to increase fertility, helps tone the uterus of an expectant mother and can lessen the strain felt from contractions. Some reports have even shown that it can increase milk production. However, most experts agree that pregnant women should limit their consumption of red raspberry leaf to the third trimester, only.

Vitex – Another “women’s” herb, vitex helps keep hormones in balance. Used for centuries as a female remedy, Vvtex works by supporting the pituitary gland — the master gland for hormone production. Traditionally, vitex was used to stimulate breast milk production in nursing mothers, boost fertility and relieve the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome. This herb can also shorten a woman’s monthly visit from “Aunt Flow” – always a welcome benefit. Please note that vitex should be strictly avoided during pregnancy.




The Smart Girl’s Guide to Sport Nutrition: BCAA, Thermogenics, Pre and Post Workout Boosters

Filed Under: Exercise and Fitness,Sports Nutrition,Women's Health at 7:00 am | By: Mauricio Matusiak, Senior Editor
FitnessProper nutrition can be the difference between a successful workout program and frustration with poor results. Women trying to lose weight often have a diet lacking essential nutrients which may result in fatigue, lack of results and even some health problems. Women’s sport nutrition supplements can correct this lack of nutrients by providing the proper amount of macronutrients such as protein, carbohydrates and lipids for a specific fitness goal. So, we present you a quick guide to women’s sport nutrition.


BCAA (Branched Chain Amino Acid) supplements may help you build a solid base of lean, feminine muscle, and help to trim the excess fat. The human body needs BCAA’s three aminos (isoleucine, leucine, and valine) in order to meet the increased demand for amino acids during exercise without breaking down muscle tissue. BCAA supplementation is ideal to enhance sports performance and recovery, meaning you can go harder and longer in the gym, without experiencing muscle fatigue. BCAAs are also directly involved in the creation of new muscle tissue, both as the building blocks and as the builder.


Thermogenic fat-burning supplements are one of women’s top-selling sport nutrition products due to its ability to increase the body’s thermogenesis or core body temperature, and consequently increasing the amount of calories burned. Rasperry Ketone, green tea (EGCG), and capsaicin (chili peppers) supplements are the most popular and often found in women’s weight-loss diets.

Pre- and Post-Workout Boosters

Pre- and post-workout boosters are essential to most fitness programs. As a simple rule, a good supplement prior to workout ensures that your body has enough fuel for exercising and a supplement after the workout is completed ensures proper recovery and prevents injuries. Women’s booster supplements are pretty much the same as men’s products. For pre-workout, nitric oxide can be an excellent helper, relaxing muscles that control blood vessels and allowing better blood flow. This will result in better energy production, so you can train longer and harder as well as getting better recovery from workouts. For post-workout, a good protein shake can be the perfect fit as the body tends to digest faster within 30 minutes after training. Protein shakes can also be taken before workouts (ideally 20-30 minutes) to prepare the muscles for physical activity.


Managing Menopausal Symptoms Without Hormones

Filed Under: Uncategorized,Women's Health at 3:18 pm | By: Jeremy Michael

The average age a woman enters menopause in the U.S. is age 51. A woman officially enters menopause one year after her last menstrual cycle. However, hormones can begin fluctuating and declining much earlier, in a phase referred to as “peri-menopause.” Peri-menopause can begin as early as age 35—but more commonly begins about age 40 or older.

Declining hormones may lead to a whole host of very unpleasant menopausal symptoms, and it’s estimated that 75% of American women experience some menopause symptoms.

Menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes, night sweats, irritability and occasional sleeplessness can make this period in a woman’s life truly miserable. But there are solutions that have been shown to effectively help relieve these symptoms without the use of hormones (hormone replacement therapy or HRT).

Remifemin menopause relief is an herbal supplement that has been shown to relieve common symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes, night sweats, irritability, as well as occasional sleeplessness. Remifemin contains an exclusive standardized RemiSure black cohosh extract, found in no other brands on the market. It’s much more than garden-variety black cohosh. It has been shown to be effective in numerous clinical studies, and has been one of the most well-recognized brands for relieve of menopausal symptoms for nearly 60 years.

If you are in need of more additional support at night, there is Remifemin Good Night menopause relief, which contains the RemiSure brand of black cohosh to relieve hot flashes and night sweats. It also contains relaxing herbs, including valerian, lemon balm, and hops. Remifemin Good Night not only relieves menopausal symptoms but supports sleep quality with its non-habit-forming, proprietary Restful Sleep Blend.

Menopause doesn’t have to be miserable. Turn to estrogen-free Remifemin or Remifemin Good Night for a hormone –free way to deal with the symptoms of menopause.


What’s New? Baby Booster

Filed Under: Baby and Child Health,Supplements,Women's Health at 5:00 pm | By: Mauricio Matusiak, Senior Editor
15. BabyBoosterLucky Vitamin is happy to present a premium brand of natural supplements to our customers: Baby Booster.

Baby Booster offers all-natural supplements with a blend of nutrients that are essential to a healthy conception and pregnancy. The company has developed special formulas which contain not only micronutrients commonly found in every prenatal supplement, but also important macronutrients.

Baby Booster ensures these products contain ingredients that are often lacking in a woman’s diet and is the perfect supplement for those gaps in the diet that many of pregnant women are trying to fill. Baby Booster is a good start to the day but it also provides a great protein supplement between meals to help ward off the afternoon “crash”, the hunger associated with low nutrition. This unique product contains DHA, folic acid, and other nutritional supplements that are so important for mothers as well as developing babies. The combination of high-protein to low carbohydrate provides an excellent nutritional source without the excess calories.

One of the company’s primary focus is ingredient quality. Baby Booster spent over a year researching the market for the best ingredient sources and consulting with medical and nutritional professionals. The company uses the same source of vegetarian DHA as over 99% of FDA-approved infant formulas, while other companies use fish oil that can contain toxic heavy metals that are especially dangerous to babies and pregnant women.

Additionally, you can save even more when you shop Baby Booster supplements at Just enter the promo code APRIL15NEW15 for an additional 15% off all products of this new brand.


What’s New? Strong Girl

Filed Under: Sports Nutrition,Women's Health at 7:00 am | By: Mauricio Matusiak, Senior Editor
13. StrongGirlLucky Vitamin is happy to introduce another top-quality brand of women’s sports supplements to our customers: Strong Girl.

Strong Girl offers a superior line of sport supplements created by women, for women. If you demand more out of your training, more out of life, and more out of your nutrition, Strong Girl products are perfect for you.

Strong Girl supplements are designed to help you achieve your goals and be the best version of yourself. The company had developed products that provide premium nutrition with effective formulas, so you can be beautiful and strong, both inside and out. Whether you’re a fitness fanatic, a weekend warrior, an obstacle course enthusiast, a recreational athlete, a busy mom or a strong, active woman, Strong Girl is the perfect answer for your fitness needs.

One of the company’s best-selling items is Strong Girl Smart Weight Loss. Designed with 100% premium ingredients, this premium weight loss product includes a key ingredient shown in scientific research to help people lose weight: green coffee. Strong Girl Smart Weight Loss also contains a blend of hot, efficient ingredients such as garcinia cambogia, caralluma, amla fruit, and caraway, to deliver advanced weight loss results. Two other products from Strong Girl are also hot-selling items. Strong Girl Isolate is another popular product as this complete lean nutritional protein shake is made from 100% isolate proteins for ideal bioavailability. Strong Girl Pre-Workout is a powerful pre-workout designed specifically for explosive energy, strength and focus.

Additionally, you can save even more when you shop Strong Girl supplements at Just enter the promo code APRIL15NEW15 for an additional 15% off all products of this new brand.


Pregnant + New Mama’s Guide to Self Care

Filed Under: Baby and Child Health,Women's Health at 8:00 am | By: Guest Blogger
mama_selfcare_guideWhile you’re nourishing and growing your baby, first in your womb, and then in your arms, you have to take care of your self. Your body is creating this miracle, and you want to provide the optimal start in life to your munchkin. Growing a human being, recovering from childbirth, and taking care of a newborn is not easy. It takes all of you- mind, body, and soul.

I only use natural and organic beauty and health products- if you haven’t made the switch yet, now is the time to protect yourself and your baby from harmful toxic chemicals. I’ve found LuckyVitamin to be the most cost effective place to buy natural and organic beauty and health products. These are some of my favorites:

Rainbow Light Complete Prenatal System– I took these once I found out I was pregnant. These are the best, most comprehensive prenatals out there. It’s 6 a day, so if that’s too much, try the Rainbow Light Prenatal One– I was taking these while I was TTC, and switched back to these once the baby was born. I’m still taking them now because i’m still nursing her at 13 months.

NOW Foods Highest Potency DHA-500– You need to supplement your prenatals with DHA, and EPA. This has both. It’s critical for baby’s development, your heart health, and helps prevent postpartum depression.

Ddrops Liquid Vitamin D3 Drops for Infants 400IU– If you’re able to nurse, start giving baby Vitamin D. It’s a critical nutrient they need for their development, and the only one they don’t get enough of from breastmilk. These one drop bottles are the easiest- you drop one drop on your nipple, or on the baby’s pacifier.

Bentley’s Organic Baby Oil– This is what I use for baby after bathing, and for myself after showering instead of body lotion. It’s safe, organic, absorbs quickly, has a mix of nourishing oils, and a relaxing soothing all natural scent. I try to simplify my life by using products that work double duty.

Little Twig Organic Bubble Bath Calming Lavender– Take luxurious, warm (not hot) bubble baths while you’re pregnant, because you will barely have time to shower once the baby is born. Little Twig also has an organic Baby Wash in Lavender that is my fave for bathing baby.

Weleda Wild Rose Creamy Body Wash– Treat yourself to the divine natural chemical-free fragrance of wild roses with this luxurious shower gel. Once you have a baby, the days of long showers are gone, so make your five minute escape count. This tube lasts me a long time! It’s a wonderful gift as well.

Mychelle Dermaceuticals SunShield SPF28 Coconut– This is a great transparent every day sunscreen for your face, because you should wear SPF even if you’re indoors most of the time, and you want to make sure yours doesn’t have harmful ingredients like oxybenzone etc.

Tom’s of Maine Natural Long Lasting Deodorant Honeysuckle Rose– Antiperspirants and conventional deodorants have lots of toxic ingredients in them, such as aluminium etc. My fave natural one is Tom’s- it doesn’t leave white marks on your clothes, smells delicious, and works.

For more pregnancy and new mom tips, registry advice, and healthy comfort food recipes, check out my blog LivLuna. For example if you want to know how much caffeine is safe, read my post ‘TTC, pregnant or nursing + love coffee, here’s what you need to know’.

Maria Olson Goins is a mommy lifestyle blogger, mama to a baby girl, and the founder of LivLuna.


3 Amazing Benefits of Prenatal Yoga

Filed Under: Exercise and Fitness,General Wellness & Wellbeing,Women's Health at 8:00 am | By: Guest Blogger
prenatalPregnancy is a time of monumental transformation. How can Prenatal Yoga support you during this incredible journey?

Physical Body:  Your body is stretching from the inside to make room for a second human to share the space within, and your organs are being displaced to accommodate your new roommate.  Symptoms from sciatica to nausea to varicose veins can make physical existence uncomfortable.  While pregnancy is a joy and a miracle it also comes with discomfort.

Yoga directly addresses common physical discomforts through postures that release, tone, and enliven muscles, ligaments, organs, and nerves.  When you move through yoga postures, your whole body takes part in a dance that moves blood and fluids to purify the body’s systems.

Labor and birth can be long and hard.  It deserves no less attention than training for a marathon does.  And if you want a training regimen for labor, yoga is it. All the key movements that help a baby be born are replicated in yoga postures.  By moving in spirals, circles, toning and releasing the pelvic floor, opening the hips, and breathing deeply into all parts of your lungs, you prepare for the big day when your body will facilitate bringing a new human being onto the earth.

Emotional Body:  Beyond the physical transformation that pregnancy instigates, there’s the emotional impact.  The hormone soup that bathes your inner world and regulates your emotions is suddenly shaken.  Beyond that, you know in some vague sort of way that the freedom to sleep for a whole night is about to be revoked for years.  Anxiety, depression, anger, obsessive thoughts, and sadness may flow unpredictably and erratically through the lives of many pregnant women.

Yoga supports your emotional well being by bringing balance to your mind, deepening your perspective, and releasing emotional energy from your body’s tissues.  This is supported by postures and breathing techniques that help to move energy/prana through the body and of course meditation, which provides some distance between the “I” and the thought that creates or reinforces the emotion.   The ancient wisdom of yogic philosophy can also support a balanced and resilient mental/emotional complex.  We learn about santosha, or radical acceptance; shraddha or faith/trust in what is; and viveka, or discernment between the thoughts that serve us and those that don’t.

Spiritual Body:  A new human being – mind, body, and soul – is being born within you.  The deepest mystery of the universe is taking place within you.  And it’s changing your sense of self, your identity.  The individual that you have experienced yourself to be for decades will be no more, as your destiny is joined to a tiny being that will depend entirely on you.

Yoga helps you to embrace the spiritual transformation that is inherent to pregnancy and harness it to support a deepening awareness of the timeless YOU that lives beneath all definitions and circumstances.  It invites you to explore deeper and deeper levels of “Self”, integrating and synthesizing them as you go.  It prompts you to ask yourself the most important questions and find the answers hidden within the depth of your breath, resting in intuition and relationship to spirit.

It’s no wonder that during this journey that really has no parallel in ordinary life, women seek out a yoga practice because it is so complete.  An ancient practice steeped with wisdom, yet one that is evolving over the years to serve the ever-changing culture we live within.

This wisdom and much more can be found in Birthing Mama® an online holistic pregnancy program.

BIO: Corinne Andrews is the founder and head author of Birthing Mama®. As the owner of Yoga Center Amherst, a senior Embodyoga® teacher and the Co-founder of the local Birthing Mama Yoga, she has been teaching yoga to people of all ages and abilities since 2003.  In addition to classes, Corinne teaches private yoga sessions for health and healing. She is the mother of two children who are her greatest spiritual teachers and the focus of her life when she is not practicing or teaching yoga or experimenting in the garden and kitchen.



3 Natural Hair Dyes That Won’t Damage Your Hair

Filed Under: Beauty,Personal Care,Women's Health at 4:00 pm | By: Mauricio Matusiak, Senior Editor
HairDid you know that natural hair color products can actually deliver a superior result to your hair than conventional products? That’s right. Many natural hair dyes provide better results with less dry, over-processed hair as well as the great benefit of using a healthier product without ammonia and other dangerous chemical additives. Here’s a selection of 3 natural hair dyes that won’t damage you hair.

1. CoSaMo

CoSaMo offers a top-quality line of non-permanent hair color products which are MSDS certified and FDA approved and contain no-ammonia, no-peroxide and no PPD (p-Phenylenediamine). PPD is primarily used as a dye and is one of the “have to be avoided” ingredients. Short term exposure to high levels of p-phenylenediamine may cause severe dermatitis, eye irritation and tearing, asthma, gastritis, renal failure, vertigo, tremors, and convulsions. The majority of customers believe CoSaMo products work just as well if not better than regular hair color products.

2. Surya Brasil

Surya Brasil offers a unique line of natural cosmetic products to promote beauty and health. The company not only has products with assured natural ingredients, but it also abstains from using substances that are harmful to you or to the environment. Surya Brasil contains no lead, ammonia, PPD dyes, and any other chemicals.

3. Naturtint

Naturtint offers a premium line of natural hair coloring products featuring plant-based active ingredients. This unique permanent hair coloring works by using a three-step process without ammonia, parabens, silicones, paraffin, mineral oils, heavy metals, artificial fragrances, SLS, or formaldehyde derivatives. The active plant-based ingredients and the pH of the colorant cream help to open the external cuticle layer of the hair naturally. Next, the natural color of the hair is removed, and micro-pigments penetrate the deepest layers of the hair with the new color. Finally, the cuticle returns to its original position, trapping the colorants inside the hair to ensure that the new color won’t fade away.


6 Effective Tips to Banish Cellulite

Filed Under: Beauty,Personal Care,Women's Health at 1:00 pm | By: Mauricio Matusiak, Senior Editor
CelluliteDid you know that cellulite can affect men and women of any body weight or size? Cellulite is the presence of toxic deposits of subcutaneous fat material and fibrous tissue that are not able to be eliminated, causing a dimpling effect on the skin. These deposits often occur on the thighs and hips of women but do happen to men too. There are many ways to treat cellulite, often done by techniques to break down these toxic body deposits and remove them out your body. Here, we present you 6 effective tips to banish cellulite.

1. Dry Brush: 

Dry brushing can help minimizing cellulite. Just use a dry body brush to scrub thighs and buttocks vigorously, promoting nutrients and removing toxins from the skin. Dry brushing promotes the tissue to swell hiding the uneven dimpling effect of cellulite. This is an easy-to-do, efficient treatment but only removes it temporarily, so you may have to do it as often as needed.

2. Coffee Scrub

Coffee can help too as caffeine is an excellent ingredient to treat and reduce the appearance of cellulite. You can make a homemade mix of olive oil and warm coffee grounds, creating a thick paste. Then, use it as a body scrub on areas that have cellulite, rubbing into problem areas to stimulate the blood flow. Massage vigorously for a few minutes then shower to wash it off.

3. Seaweed

Seaweed baths have been used in the Mediterranean for many years as it may help reduce the appearance of cellulite. An inexpensive home treatment, you just need to add four sheets of seaweed to your bath once a week to get the maximum benefit.

4. Stretching

Stretching and exercising are very effective ways to reduce the appearance of cellulite. Combine strength training, to improve the tone of muscle tissue, with regular high-intensity interval-training, to burn fat and speed up your metabolism. Stretch before and after exercise to promote better circulation, minimizing cellulite appearance on the skin.

5. Coconut Oil

Coconut oil can be used as a cellulite massage oil treatment. The massage exfoliates the epidermis, stimulates blood flow and lymph circulation, and encourages the growth of new skin, factors which contribute to reducing the appearance of cellulite. Prepare the skin for the massage treatment by taking a hot shower, opening your pores. Then, vigorously brush the area affected by the cellulite in a circular motion to increase circulation and remove any dead skin that is preventing the body from absorbing the oil.

6. Healthy Eating

Many foods can help you battle cellulite including foods high in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids such as fish and flaxseeds, food with unsaturated fats such as nuts, seeds, and avocados, as well as lean protein like chicken breast, and whole grains foods such as whole grain bread and cereals, brown rice, pasta, quinoa and barely. Fruits and vegetable are also helpful. Bananas and papaya are particularly effective in cellulite prevention due to their high potassium content. Fruits high in vitamin C such as oranges, berries and pineapple may boost collagen levels, a protein found in the connective tissues of the body, which may strengthen tissues and reduce appearance of cellulite. Green leafy vegetables, such as spinach or kale, as well as asparagus can also fight cellulite. And of course, drink lots of water, the most important ingredient to banish cellulite.


Think Beyond the Pink


Every month it seems is an “awareness” month and October is one of the biggest with “Pinktober” where everything feels like it turns pink!  Since most of us are already aware of women and breast cancer, we want to expand your awareness so you know there is more than women and pink. There are men too!

Yes, it’s true that 1 in 8 women (about 12%) will most likely be diagnosed with breast cancer but do you know that men can be diagnosed as well? This year it is projected that over 2,240 new cases of male breast cancer will be diagnosed and over 400 men will die from the disease.  Although a large percentage of breast cancers are not genetic, many are due to a genetic or hereditary background.  Approximately  5-10% of breast cancer can be caused from a variety of gene mutations including the BRCA (breast cancer susceptibility gene).  50% of BRCA carriers are male! In general there is a 1% chance of a man being diagnosed with breast cancer (1 in 1000) however this percentage increases up to 7% if a man is a carrier of the gene mutation.

There are many factors that increase the risk for men regarding breast cancer.

First, do men (or women) acknowledge that men have breast? Aren’t they just pecs?!

Is there a family history of breast and other cancers as most don’t equate this with a male breast cancer risk.  Learning about your hereditary health can save your life. If you have a family member with early age diagnosis of Prostate, Melanoma, Pancreatic, Breast and other cancers, then you may be at a higher risk. Even if you are a carrier of the BRCA or other gene mutation this does not mean you will get breast cancer, it just means you are at a higher risk and need to take the necessary precautions and be educated.  Perform a self breast exam more often or having frequent mammograms (yes men can have a mammogram and should do self exams!) are important tools for early detection. Unfortunately since no is checking, men are often diagnosed far too late.

In addition to knowing your risk factors, changes in your diet, supplementation, exercise programs and meditation may also help. Choosing more organic foods with little to no hormones added has been found to be helpful as breast cancer is often hormonally driven in men. A diet filled with organic cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, kale along with berries can also be beneficial.  Since we can’t always eat our nourishment, taking additional supplements or choosing green powders for drinks can help get the proper daily intake as well as supplements such as Vitamin D, Turmeric, Green Tea and natural products that works as an anti-inflamatory or antioxidants.

So this month while everything is turning pink, think about turning your lifestyle a little green. Now that you’re aware, become educated with your genetic background, know your risk and make healthier choices. And remember this month it’s not just about the women, it’s about the men too!

For more information on Male Breast Cancer, to purchase awareness products or to donate, visit HIS Breast Cancer Awareness (a fully accredited 501c3 nonprofit organization);


13 Deadly Toxins in Your Make-Up

Filed Under: Green Living,Personal Care,Women's Health at 7:00 am | By: Mauricio Matusiak, Senior Editor
13_deadly_toxinsLooking to shop make-up products? Be careful! Many products contain hazardous chemicals ingredients that can be dangerous to your health. Here’s a list of 13 deadly toxins to avoid in your make-up, cosmetic, and personal care products.

1- Parabens: commonly used in makeup, this toxic ingredient may interfere with hormone function and it has been associated with breast cancer. Look out for ingredients with “pararaben” in their name such as methylparaben, butylparaben, propylparaben, isobutylparaben, or ethylparaben.

2- BHA and BHT: BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) and BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene) are widely used as preservatives in makeup products, lipsticks and moisturizers, among other cosmetics. BHA and BHT are closely related synthetic antioxidants known to induce allergic reactions in the skin, cause cancer, and interfere with hormone function.

3- Siloxanes (Cyclomethicone): these silicone-based compounds are used in cosmetics and facial treatments to soften, smooth, and moisten. It can interfere with hormone function, may impair human fertility, and damage the liver. Check for ingredients ending with the word siloxane such as cyclotetrasiloxane.

4- DEA, cocamide DEA and lauramide DEA: widely used in moisturizers and makeup products. DEA compounds are used to make cosmetics creamy or sudsy but are known to cause skin irritation. DEA also acts as a pH adjuster, counteracting the acidity of other ingredients.

5- Parfum and Synthetic fragrances: widely used, even in some products marketed as “unscented”. Mixture of chemicals that can trigger allergies and asthma. Some linked to cancer and neurotoxicity.

6. PEGs: these petroleum-based compounds that are widely used in cosmetics as thickeners, solvents, softeners, and moisture-carriers. PEGs are commonly used as cosmetic cream bases and may be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane, which can cause cancer.

7. Petrolatum: used in a variety of make-up products, as well as lip balm/lipstick, and skin care products. Petrolatum is mineral oil jelly used as a barrier to lock moisture in the skin in a variety of moisturizers that can be contaminated with cancer-causing impurities.

8. Mineral Oil: often used in beauty treatments products, mineral oil is a petroleum by-product which may clog the pores and interferes with the skin’s ability to eliminate toxins, promoting acne and other disorders. Slows down skin function and cell development, resulting in premature aging. Its solvent properties are used on cleansers that are intended to use in removing oil-based makeup and in removing the accumulated dust and dirt on oily skin types.

9. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES): used in cosmetics as a detergent, SLES can be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane, which may cause cancer. SLS may damage liver, irritates skin, eyes and respiratory tract.

10- Dibutyl Phthalate or DBP: often found in nail products and some hair sprays, this toxic to reproduction may interfere with hormone function. DBP’s are commonly hidden on ingredient labels under the term “fragrance”.

11. Heavy Metals: heavy metals such as lead, mercury, cadmium, arsenic, and nickel can build up in the body over time and are known to cause many health problems such as cancer, reproductive and developmental disorders, neurological problems; memory loss, cardiovascular, kidney and renal problems; headaches, vomiting, nausea, and diarrhea; among many others. Multiple conventional cosmetic products such as foundation, mascaras, lipsticks, tints, glosses contain multiple heavy metals.

12.  Formaldehyde-Releasing Preservatives: widely used in moisturizers, formaldehyde is known for causing cancer. Look out for ingredient such as DMDM Hydantoin, Daizolidinyl Urea, and Methenamine.

13. Coal Tar Dyes: Labeled as P-phenylenediamine, this toxic is known to cause cancer and can be contaminated with heavy metals toxic to the brain. Coal tar-derived colors are used extensively in cosmetics, generally identified by a five-digit Color Index (C.I.) number.



Acure Skin, Body and Hair Care: Battling Breast Cancer with Better Choices

Filed Under: Announcements & News,Personal Care,Women's Health at 8:00 am | By: Jessica Justh, Senior Editor


On average, women use a dozen personal care products containing 168 chemical ingredients every day.  Manufactures claim levels are too low to cause harm, however, low levels layered on everyday, add up. When one third of personal care products contain at least one ingredient linked to cancer and up to 80% of products may contain one or more hidden hazards that are not even listed on product labels, it is no wonder that the likelihood of a woman being confronted with breast cancer in their lifetime has risen to 1 in 8. Fortunately, recent studies show that breast cancer is linked to several environmental and genetic factors, which can be controlled or mitigated. Using clean personal care is an amazing first step.

Acure is a family owned and operated company, founded on sustainable principles, to provide the highest quality fair trade, natural and certified organic personal care products. Kristy and Jon Guerra founded Acure as a way to honor Kristy’s grandmother, who battled breast cancer for over 10 years.

“I wanted to help raise money for breast cancer research and awareness while also providing healthy products that promote healthier living and a greener planet,” says Kristy.

In addition to creating clinically proven effective formulas that steer women away from cancer-causing ingredients, Acure also donates 5% of their skin care proceeds to Bright Pink, a national non-profit organization that provides education and support to young women who are at high risk for breast and ovarian cancer. They arm young women with knowledge, options and a great attitude, and offer companionship and empathy during their journey.

Acure continues their commitment to clean, healthy, clinically proven effective products, as they extend the facial and body care line to include hair care.  These formulas are salon tested for maximum performance, using the finest natural, organic and fair trade ingredients available, leaving out the parabens, sulfates, phthalates, petrochemicals, animal bi-products and synthetic fragrances found in most shampoos and conditioners.  Acure uses cutting edge plant stem cell technology to address specific hair concerns at the root and follicle level.  Argan plant stem cells extracted from the Moroccan argan tree, famous for its prized argan nut oil, are the first active stem cells with proven effect on real dermal stem cells. In the skin, argan stem cells support the dermal stem cells in their regenerating potential, accelerating the skin’s natural repair process. In the hair, they strengthen the follicle connection between the hair fiber and the follicle itself, promoting healthy hair retention and growth.

Not only is plant stem cell technology impactful to the skin and hair, it also has far reaching positive impact to the environment in that it supports preservation and availability of the most rare plant species for generations to come. Argan plant stem cells are 100% non-GMO, free from herbicides, pesticides and fungicides and organically extracted.

Acure’s Lemongrass and Argan Stem Cell Shampoo and Conditioner not only embody these dynamic little buds of gold but also folds in organic Moroccan argan oil and CoQ10 to support keratin production and strengthen the follicle connection, rich avocado oil, which provides vitamin B12 and moisture, while lemongrass cleanses and clarifies.  All of our shampoos and conditioners are vegan, gluten free and color safe, plus for each hair care product Acure sells, they donate 10 cents to Water.Org. provides underdeveloped communities with sustainable, sanitary water sources through local partnership, technology and education.

Try them all and fall in love with the results while making a healthy choice that supports the fight against breast cancer!



Breast Cancer: What the Medical Professionals Don’t Talk About

men-wearing-breast-cancer-ribbonWARNING! This is NOT just “another” story for October’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month!

Read on to learn something most people and medical professionals don’t know or talk about…

Let’s face it, if you’re a man you probably tune all the “pink stuff” this month right out!  But what if the pink ribbon had a little BLUE in it? Then would you notice it? Do men even know they have breast tissue? And if so, how many of you really DO anything with this awareness?

Ask yourself these questions and see how educated you really are?

(Questions below should be answered by both men and women);

  • Do you know or talk about a family history of ALL cancers for both genders?
  • Do you know that men can be diagnosed with breast cancer?
  • Do you (men and women) perform a self breast exam once a month?
  • Have you changed or improved your diet or nutritional intake to increase prevention?
  • Do you fit in at least 3-5 hours of exercise a week?
  • How much alcohol is “ok” to consume if you’re concerned about breast cancer?
  • Has anyone in your family (men and women) been tested for the BRCA (breast cancer susceptibility gene) mutation?
  • If you have family members (with or without a gene mutation) with Prostate, Ovarian, Melanoma, Pancreatic and other cancers does this increase your risk of Breast Cancer?
  • Does your family doctor, gynecologist or urologist talk to you about your risks due to a family history of cancer(s)?
  • Does your doctor perform a routine breast exam if you’re a man? If not, who is checking you for this if you do have a family history?
  • Can a man have a mammogram?
  • Do men have breasts?

Most of us know the stats on breast cancer in women (1 in 8 women will be diagnosed) but do you know;

  • This year it is projected that over 2,240 new cases of male breast cancer will be diagnosed and over 400 men will die from the disease.
  • 50% of the worlds BRCA (breast cancer susceptibility gene) carriers are male and there is an increased risk from 1% closer to 6% of a diagnosis as a male if a carrier of the BRCA gene.
  • Percentage fatality rate is often higher for men diagnosed with breast cancer as usually no one is checking, men don’t notice the symptoms, men are not aware they can be diagnosed with breast cancer and are not screened on a regular basis with the current insurance regulations.
  • Male breast cancer treatment consist of mastectomy due to limited amount of tissue and often followed with some or all; radiation therapy, chemo therapy and hormone therapy

This October, we need to stretch the boundaries of breast cancer awareness to include men and really help educate. Let’s add some blue to the pink and help men to learn they too can be affected by this disease. Men need to know they do have breasts and what their risk factors are. Women need to be informed not just for themselves, their sisters or daughters but for their husbands, brothers and sons. Let’s show what awareness is really all about and educate all genders.

For more information on Male Breast Cancer, to purchase awareness products or to donate, visit HIS Breast Cancer Awareness (a fully accredited 501c3 nonprofit organization);