Posts from the ‘General’ Category

Parabens, What Are They And What Are The Risk?

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What Is Paraben?

 

 

Parabens are a group of preservatives that are added to most cosmetic products and or some foods. Parabens are a low-cost and effective method of preserving items for relatively long periods of time. Although the chemicals known as parabens were once thought to be safe, there is some controversy over their use.

 

Function and Labeling

These preservatives are used in cosmetics and other products to protect the item against the growth of microorganisms.
It is important to be aware that the use of parabens in our personal products on a regular basis could be a risk your health.

Check product labels for: ethyl, butyl, isobutyl propyl, isopropyl and/or methylparaben.

Risk

Parabens  are also present in some foods, but these act very differently than those applied in personal care products.  First of all, in a food, other compounds are present in nature’s perfect balance. We’re talking antioxidants and enzymes that work together to create an overall healthful effect on the body.  Second, when parabens enter the body through foods, they have a much better chance to be metabolized because they’re going through the digestive system.  Stomach acids and other enzymes help to break them down to metabolites that are easily flushed out of the body.  Third, parabens behave much differently when applied to skin than when ingested in a food.

Recent Study found that parabens, when applied to skin, react with an enzyme called SULT.  In simplified terms, SULT is the enzyme that helps the body flush out estrogen.  So, when SULT enzymes are deactivated, estrogen levels increase.  Parabens were found to deactivate these important enzymes.  The study states “…these results suggest chronic topical application of parabens may lead to prolonged estrogenic effects in skin as a result of inhibition of estrogen sulfotransferase activity.”  Supporters of parabens are always talking about how little parabens are absorbed and how weak their estrogenic activity is–but with this study in mind, absorption and estrogen receptor activity really are moot points.  It’s a reaction with parabens in the skin that increases overall estrogen levels in the body.  Many reproductive cancers are estrogen-dependent and tumor growth is fueled by an excess of estrogen.  Uterine fibroids, endometriosis, adenomyosis, irregular menstruation–all of these reproductive problems are caused by an excess of estrogen.  So why would you want to apply these compounds to your skin!? 

Another pro-paraben argument that you’ll hear is that the skin metabolizes parabens quickly and they’re flushed out of the body.  Not so!  This Study found that after a month of applying methylparaben to skin cells, it “remained unmetabolized and persisted slightly” in the stateum corneum. Additionally, it was found to affect DNA expression in the skin cells, inhibiting collagen production, and possibly leading to early aging of cells.

How To Avoid

The David Suzuki foundation reports that 75 to 90 percent of cosmetics will contain parabens.  This includes shampoo, conditioners, skin creams, lotions, nail polish, moisturizers, make-up, shaving foam, deodorant, tanning lotions and toothpaste.  There are more and more paraben-free products available on the market, so that consumers can make a choice to limit their exposure to this chemical.

Refrences:

U.S. Food and Drug Administration: Parabens
Parabens inhibit human skin estrogen sulfotransferase activity: possible link to paraben estrogenic effects.
Prusakiewicz JJHarville HMZhang YAckermann CVoorman RL. Source Department of Pharmacokinetics, Dynamics, and Metabolism, Pfizer Global Research and Development, 2800 Plymouth Rd., 20/342S-D, Ann Arbor, MI 48105, USA. Jeff.Prusakiewicz@pfizer.com
Effects of methyl paraben on skin keratinocytes.
Ishiwatari SSuzuki THitomi TYoshino TMatsukuma STsuji T. Source Fancl Corporation, 12-13 Kamishinano, Yokohama 244-0806, Japan. shiishiwata@fancl.co.jp

Stephanie Greenwood from Chemical Of The Day

David Suzuki Foundation: Parabens

 

 

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Flax seed Oil and Gel

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Flax seed gel is one of my favorite products for natural hair!  Flax seeds are very inexpensive, the gel is surprisingly quick and easy to make, and best of all it works wonders for my hair!

Benefits:

  • All natural..organic:)
  • Leaves hair soft, shiny, and moisturized
  • You can reuse the flax seeds
  • Cost effective (more for your money)
  • Nourishing for the hair rich in omega 3
  • Gives great curl definition
  • Gives hold with no crunch/non flaking/not drying to the hair/does not cause breakage/or shedding
  • Fast drying
  • Great for wash n go’s/sleek styles/twists and twist outs and sets the twists once dry for a lovely twist out (my twist outs will usually last up to 5 days!)
  • Mixes well with oils and most products
  • Great for all hair types

 

Flaxseed oil is created from the seeds of the flax plant, which is full of fatty acids.  Flax seeds are a fantastic source of Omega-3 fatty acids.   Why use flaxseed oil?  Well, this organic oil has healing properties that can help alleviate skin disease symptoms and digestive problems. What’s more, it’s also said that flaxseed oil can increase hair growth and revive dry scalp. Certainly, scientists confirm that the omega-3 in flaxseed oil has scalp-replenishing properties.

These healing effects are great, but you can also turn flaxseed into an all-natural gel to hold your hair in place.

 My Recipe

 

  1. Bring approximately 1 1/2 cups of water to a boil, then add 1/2 cup of  organic brown flax seeds (non organic work too).
  2. Boil mixture for approx 3-5 min stirring often so the flax seeds do not stick to the pot, when the water becomes thick and gel like remove from heat.
  3. Immediately pour entire mixture (seeds and gel) into a strainer over your storage container (some use a stocking and tongs, but I’m to lazy for this method).  Its is important to pour mixture into strainer while it is still hot !! BE CAREFUL !! because gel will thicken even further as it cools and become more difficult to strain.
  4. After gel is separated into your storage container add  aprox 1 1/2 Tbsp. of aloe vera gel, and essential oils of your choice.  ( I add about 10 drops each of lavender, sweet orange, rosemary and a  bit of vitamin e oil as a natural preservative). Mix well.
  5. When done add the lid to your air tight storage container and store in the refrigerator.

 

 

All Natural Deep Conditioning Treatment

Hello world!

I’m an artist, vegan chick with natural hair. I firmly care about both the health and appearance of my body and the environment. HippieChicChick wholeheartedly encompasses my “on the body is in the body” way of life. Who says that a vegan, with a gluten allergy, who refuses to use chemical laden products, and avoids GMO’s like the plague can’t look great? Not this hippiechick! XOXOImage

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