Health Parenting

The Toxins In Our Children

Our bodies were made to keep us protected from outside invaders. Invaders that could threaten our survival and well-being. Little did we know that throughout our entire lives, from the time we were born, we would constantly be introduced to elements and chemicals that would poison our bodies little by little, causing havoc within us.

Things we use to clean our homes with, what we use to shine our vehicles with, nail polishes we use on our little girls, perfumes we spray on each other, what we eat and feed our very own children, our furniture we sit on to relax and to eat on, our daily hygiene products – Everything! Everything that we’ve only known of has toxins in it that eventually harm the very cells that make us, crushing our health from the inside and out.

We need to know more about these toxins so we can reduce our exposure to the worst of them and protect ourselves and our children from the harmful effects.

“How is this so harmful to our children?”

“Unregulated chemicals are increasing in use and are prevalent in products that Americans use everyday.”- ‘Toxic Exposure: Chemicals Are in Our Water, Food, Air and Furniture | UC San Francisco (’. That’s me and you. That’s your children and grandchildren. Many of us have used plastic baby bottles for our children not realizing the chemicals from the plastic seep into our children’s milk as soon as they are born. It was found that BPA- a chemical that is used to harden plastics for baby bottles, toys, and other products, could harm the endocrine system of fetuses and infants. Thankfully, the FDA outlawed BPA from being in any baby products as of 2012, however, scientists believe that the products that are now used to replace BPA could be just as harmful. That is just one instance of what we use daily that is unhealthy for us. There are trillions more!

Childhood Cancers

The environment that we expose our children to play a role in childhood cancers. Long-term exposure to some household cancer causing products threaten their health. Harmful chemicals can enter the body from simply breathing in while the floors are being mopped in your home. Many of these chemicals can also be absorbed into the skin as tables are sprayed down before sitting to eat. Researchers at Georgetown’s Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center found a higher level of common household pesticides in children’s urine who also were diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia between the ages of 3-7. – ‘Common Household Pesticides Linked To Childhood Cancer Cases In Washington Area — ScienceDaily’. House hold items that are used to bring fresh or clean fragrances to the home carry chemicals that are harmful to us and our young children. Long-term exposure to this may cause cancer as well. To be safe, make your own homemade air fresheners using fragrance-free products. There are different things you can use for house cleaning. Anything to possibly reduce the chances of childhood cancers for our babies is worth a try.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

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ADHD, as many know, has been linked to lead. Lead can be found in children’s costume jewelry and toys. The intoxication of this leads to a syndrome that resembles ADHD. Higher blood levels of lead is found in children with higher levels of ADHD. Pesticides are another form in which cause neurological behavioral problems. Bug sprays that are used on our fruits and vegetables can be ingested if not washed correctly or long enough. A different study showed that those who had ADHD had high levels of organophosphates, which is a chemical found in the bug sprays that are introduced onto our fruits and veggies. To prohibit this from happening to your children, buy organic fruits and vegetables, always. I believe your child, any child, is worth the extra cost. Aside from fruits and vegetables, food coloring snacks are also a culprit for ADHD. Food coloring has been found to cause damage to genotoxicity. Food coloring can be found in not only foods such as snacks, candies, and desserts, but also our drinks much like orange sodas, grape sodas, and some kids juices. As mentioned earlier, BPA can no longer be used in baby products, though that does not include baby shampoo plastic bottles and baby lotions. To avoid this being another link to ADHD and your child, stop using plastics and especially those plastics that are marked “No. 7” on the bottom as those are the ones that are often linked to ADHD due to BPA. – ‘Toxins in the Home Linked to ADHD in Children – ADHD Center – Everyday Health’.

Be In The Know

There are about 100,000 synthetic chemicals that are being added to our everyday products and lifestyle. A majority of these chemicals have not been tested for their effects on us humans, much less the effects it has on children and developing fetuses whose body’s are much more susceptible to ailments by these toxins. – ‘Impacts Of Environmental Toxins On The Health Of Children (’. Everyday more and more children are falling ill whether it is the two that I just touched the surface on above or heart conditions and many others. Many of these diseases/illnesses can be formed from pre-natal exposure coupled with genetics and perhaps the additional environmental introduction after birth is to blame.

It is no longer in doubt that the chemicals in our environment whether it be from our homes, schools, and outside, are affecting the health and development of our children. In 2002, the World Heath Organization and United Nations Environment Program estimated that about 3 million children under the age of 5 die every year due to environmental hazards. That was18 years ago, I can only imagine what the numbers are like now.

Do your research on everything you use. When buying foods for you and your kids, turn the box over and read what it is you are putting inside of your bodies. It’ll only take a second. Google the ingredients and chemicals that you aren’t familiar with. Go organic. Choose glass over plastic. Be intentional with you and your child[ren]’s health and what you feed your body’s. Be in the know, stay in the know. Our children’s lives depend on it.

Family Health Holidays

A Covid Christmas

We had a feeling this Christmas was going to be different, but we all were hoping for a better outcome. Things will be better soon, but in the meantime, with one of the most celebrated holidays we have to think outside of the box when it comes to our safety and gatherings.

As we so desperately want to spend the holidays with our family and friends, Which I get, we have to remain mindful about not only our health, but the health of our children, parents, and extended families. Not everyone has underlying conditions, but that still does not mean that they are safe from this virus and cannot suffer tremendously if contracted.

There are some ways to prioritize your safety and well being during this holiday season. Here, I am going to help you figure out how to accomplish this, if you cannot absolutely go without being around others.

3 Ways to Set the Tone During a Covid Christmas

1. Communicate clear boundaries
Remind your guests that they are welcome, but things will be different this time around. Now, I know not everyone accepts CDC guidelines and what-not, but you as a human should want to make a difference in people’s lives in a non-selfish, positive way. This means, masks aren’t a bad idea. I would also suggest making them wash their hands as they come into your house. This should be a part of good hygiene, anyway, especially during flu season. Staying 6 ft. from one another is another wise choice to make. Shoe covers are another barrier against inviting covid inside your house into your rooms/kitchen/ restrooms/ etc., that you will eventually step on and spread onto your bed. And NO SHARING DRINKS. You are probably looking forward to taking shots with your company, but I highly doubt you will be keeping track of who’s shot glass belongs to who and if you’re taking shots, chances are you won’t think clearly and could care less. That is up until you begin feeling symptoms a few days later…. One important thing to remember, after everyone leaves, sanitize every part of your house. Doorknobs, light fixtures, restrooms, sinks, toilets, floors, couches, tables, chairs…. basically – EVERYTHING.

2. Set the standards
Not only do you all have to think about yourselves, but also about the other guests that will be around everyone else as well. There is no telling who they can possibly come in contact with for the next 14 days after leaving your house and who’s body cannot fight a virus such as covid. Let’s keep an open mind and remember those who have a weak immunity and even those who don’t know that they do actually have an underlying condition. This applies to you as well. Safety begins with you and your household rules. Right now, your choices may affect someone’s life, even someone who you don’t personally know. Be responsible and caring.

3. Skip gifts and enjoy the time instead
This couldn’t be a better idea for many reasons. This year has been hard on a lot of people, not only in a health perspective, but financial situations have been shaken. Some have to save their every penny they can as jobs aren’t as secure as before. Jobs that are open today may shut down tomorrow. Layoff’s may be a companies only resort to stay afloat. Not to mention, exchanging gifts may also include exchanging covid. Skip gifts this year and instead focus on the guests that are able to attend and cherish making those memories. As we may have figured out, this year was the year of being grateful for those we do have in our lives and appreciate the moments spent in togetherness.

Remembering Those Who Choose To Stay Home

Christmas is a time to be with those you appreciate and love the most. Though, this may not be an option for many that does not mean they cannot be a part of the memories. Visit virtually with those who cannot join you during this time. Set time aside to make phone calls to them and send them Merry Blessings.

Stay safe. Protect yourself and the little ones who depend on you to protect them. Keep the peace. Laugh, Love, Make memories, and maintain a safe distance from everyone else. Merry Christmas and may this be the last Christmas that’s been pandemic-tized!

Beauty Depression Health Illnesses Mental Health Self-Care

21 Affirmations for Cancer Patients

Cancer does not discriminate. It does not matter your color, race, religion, marital status, sex preference, or anything else. It comes and it comes ready to destroy character, faith, confidence, beliefs, self-worth, mental health, and so much more.

When you get such devastating news your heart breaks into a million pieces as the words vibrate through you, bouncing off every organ and the echoes engrave themselves into your mind.

As we all know, the thoughts that we have reflect within our bodies causing positive outcomes or negative ones. So, I thought I would help those who have just received such tragic news, going through their first round of chemo, or are waiting for some kind of miracle to take over, with some inspirational words for the hard moments. This is for you.

21 Affirmations For Cancer Patients

  1. My scars are proof that my body is healing.

2. I am beautiful with hair and without.

3. Cancer does not define who I am, my strengths do.

4. I am not fighting alone, My friends and Family stand with me.

5. Today was hard, but God will continue to carry me through.

6. My body aches, but I can and will grow healthier and stronger everyday.

7. I am an inspiration to those who are watching my journey

8. My mind is calm. My heart is happy. My soul is peaceful. My body is healing, and my health is already improving.

9. Today is going to be one of the best days I have had in a long time.

10. I can do this. I can fight. I will beat this battle.

11. Today is a step closer toward my recovery.

12. I am going to try to eat today. Small portions are still great portions.

13. I love my body and I will love it back to health.

14. God has a plan. I may not understand it right now, but I trust it.

15. God has me cradled in his hands. I am in good hands.

16. Today I will put my mind at ease and rest my body. Everyone is deserving of a good break.

17. My smile will make someone’s day. It will make my day today.

18. I am worth this fight.

19. The doctors don’t have the final say. The report doesn’t have the final say. Jesus and I have the final say and we both agree this will be done for good. I will be healed!

20. This is just a season, not the rest of my life.

21. Good things are coming and I will remain hopeful.

You Can Do This, You Got This

I know you may be scared for your life, and that is okay. Not only is it okay, but it is completely understandable. Just know that you are not alone. Jesus walks with you every single day, even on your hardest days. He knows you hurt. He knows you are tired. He knows your fear.

You are doing such an amazing job at staying strong. When your body gets tired and you begin to feel weak, listen. Get the rest that your body is asking for. When you feel like giving up, Pray. God hears us and when you don’t have the words, only tears, he understands those, too. You are a warrior!


Get Your Sleep On!

I’m going to sound pretty cliché about this, but getting your 8 hours of Z’s really are impactful in your life. I know many of us have always been told to get a good nights rest the night before an important interview or an exam, and the reasons behind that still stand. However, there are plenty more reasons behind the theory of needing 8 hours of sleep.

We know that inadequate sleep makes us cranky the next morning, causes headaches, makes it difficult for us to reach our weight goal, has us looking a bit rough around the eyes and pretty much the entire face, and leaves us feeling fatigued and dragging our behind. Except, did you know that it also….. Well, just keep reading to find out. Here are some even greater reasons as to why your body longs for that 8 hour of shut eye every night.

1. You are more susceptible to catching a virus/cold
Lack of sleep negatively affects your immune system making it more likely that you will get sick if you are exposed to anyone with a cold or virus. Recovery also depends heavily on the amount of time you sleep and rest. Give your body what it’s asking for during this crucial time.

2. Increased risk of stroke
Sleep deprivation has been linked to strokes, heart attacks, and cardiovascular disorders that may result in early death. Sleeping less than 6 hours a night can result in a 48% greater chance of dying from heart disease and 15% chance dying from a stroke.

3. Triggers seizures
Seizures are extremely sensitive to sleep patterns. During normal sleep-wake cycles, the brains electrical activity changes. The changes of a persons brain who does not get adequate amounts of sleep can be related to their seizures. Sleep deprivation is the 2nd most common trigger of seizures.

4. Acne problems
Did you know that lack of sleep is one of three main acne triggers? Hormones being disrupted from not sleeping throws off your chemical balance forming those nasty pimples that annoy you.

5. Infertility
If you and your spouse have been trying to begin a family, this is a must know- Sleep disorders increase the risk of infertility for both sexes. According to the CDC, lack of sleep affects the hormones related to fertility. Growing your family begins with sleep.

6. Erectile dysfunction
Testosterone and oxygen are important for healthy erections and lack of sleep gets in the way of just that. Sleeping for less than 8 hours a night changes the hormonal balance in the blood stream and circulation. Any disruption of that may keep blood from travelling to the reproductive organs, causing erectile dysfunction.

7. Hair loss
Lack of sleep can decrease melatonin levels in your body. While melatonin helps regulate your sleep, it also assists in hair growth. Once your melatonin levels are off due to your sleep, negative consequences take on the body, more-so, your hair. Lack of sleep contributes to hair loss and hair thinning.

8. Yeast infections
As I mentioned before, losing sleep disrupts your hormonal balances in many ways. When a change in normal vaginal flora occurs, a yeast infection is likely to develop leaving you feeling uncomfortable, self- conscious, and irritated.

9. Wound healing
Getting enough sleep allows your cuts and deep wounds to heal more promptly. In fact, getting the right amount of sleep is more important than nutrition in speeding wound healing.

Sleep plays an important role in your physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Create a bedtime routine that helps your body know that its time for bed. Set your alarm and put down your phone for the night an hour before laying down. Take a relaxing shower and let the worries of your day drain with the water. Dim your lights down. Set the temperature the way your body needs it for sleeping. Meditate. Breathe in and out in a calming manner and drift away.


What You Didn’t Know About H2O

I chose one of the least popular topics to write about for this next blog, but I truly believe that the details I have found on drinking the appropriate amounts of water daily will WOW you. Water is not the number one choice of beverage for most people and I honestly can’t say I blame them. Now, I know water can be boring and have “no taste”, but don’t be fooled into falling into that trap…. Add lemon, kiwi, strawberries, even honey to your water and really quench your thirst. Plus, reap the benefits from it and if you do not know what benefits I am talking about just keep reading and be flabbergasted!

Some of the information mentioned below are those that have been told to us by our parents who tried to get us to drink water as much as possible when we were kids riding our bikes in the blasting summer heat, and they weren’t fibbing. However, some facts that I have gathered for this particular piece, I hadn’t learned up until now and am excited to share with you.

The advantages to drinking H2O:

1. Water Helps avoid headaches
With summer here, the heat is a constant bother, now add dehydration and you’ve got a big problem. Mild dehydration may trigger headaches. It is said by experts that a loss of electrolytes cause nerves in the brain to produce pain signals- hence your headache. Staying hydrated is key to keeping the troublesome aches away as well as treating it. Room temperature works best as cold water will only intensify the pain.

2. Relieves constipation
It is no false claim that water helps keep the GI tract moving. If you are not drinking water as much as you should, you might be suffering from mild to severe constipation. Water helps loosen stools sending them on their way.

3. Pass and avoid kidney stones
People who produce 2-2.5 liters of urine are less likely to develop kidney stones than those who produce less. In order to produce that amount of urine it takes eight to ten 8-ounce glasses of water. Drinking water helps move stones through the urinary tract and flushes toxins out avoiding new formations.

4. Aids in weight loss
Water helps boost your metabolism and makes you feel fuller; suppressing your appetite. Drinking more water keeps your body from retaining water, ironically. Which leads to the loss of water weight. Replacing a soda or other sugary drinks such as lemonade or sweet tea with water will also cut down your calorie intake.

5. Boosts skin health
Due to the ability of flushing out toxins, water helps in calming skin irritations such as eczema, wrinkles, psoriasis, and acne resulting in enhanced complexion and gleaming, healthy skin.

6. Regulates body temperature
Body temperature must remain regulated in order to function properly. When the body temperature is unable to be maintianed, the human body becomes impeded causing blood flow reduction and possibly a stroke. That is why heat strokes are so common during the summer. In order for the body to stay regulated, water intake is imperative. Even while working out, you are expelling water through your pores. Stay hydrated!

7. Maintains blood pressure
If you are at a constant battle to lower your blood pessure then look no further! Water is one of the best ways to lower your blood pressure naturally. Drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day. On days you workout, ten 8-ounce glasses of water are necessary.

8. Washes away cavity causing bacteria
Not only is swishing water after eating perfect for washing away left over food and residue that can cause cavities, but also drinking water regularly keeps teeth clean for the meantime until you are able to brush again.

9. Produces saliva reducing dry mouth
Dry mouth is most times a side effect from medications one is taking. Saliva contains substances such as electrolytes, mucus, antibacterial compounds and enzymes. It helps you chew, taste, and moisten your food to swallow down, preventing choking incidents. Drinking water assists in producing saliva at an ideal rate lessening dry mouth.

10. Strengthens your teeth
Fluoride is a cavity fighter. I know nobody likes to drink tap water, but it not only helps fight cavities it also helps keep your teeth strong. Your local tap water is the most cost effective way to prevent tooth decay!

11. Washes away bacteria that causes bad breath
The primary cause of bad breath are food particles that are sticking to your teeth and gums. When there is no way for you to floss all that junk out from your mouth, the next best thing would be to drink water. As mentioned before, water washes away food particles and fights bad breath.

12. Helps the brain react faster
Our brains work 24/7 to keep things running smoothly within our bodies so we must keep it hydrated. We want to make sure that when a message comes into the brain from anywhere in our bodies, our brain reacts quickly and correctly.

13. Think with more clarity and creativity
Have an important exam tomorrow morning? Drink water and pass with flying colors. Your brain works 14% faster when you drink just 3 glasses of water in the morning. Even a 2% drop in hydration can make it hard for us to focus and concentrate. Therefore, hydrated brains tend to work with more creativity and think with more clarity.

14. Helps balance your mood and emotions
Lack of water can leave you feeling restless, fatigued, and just not your best. Taking in the right amounts of water help you feel calm and ready to get things done. You are more prepared to accomplish things leading you to feel positive and upbeat about your day.

15. Helps manage anxiety
Water has natural calming components that are extremely useful when you suffer from anxiety. If you are in the middle of a panic attack/anxiety attack, sit down and drink some water. You will see what a difference it makes in helping you get out of that scary feeling. Drinking water is salient in controling your anxiety.

16. Improves sexual performance
This is a touchy subject, but if it helps why not bring it up? If you are having difficutly in staying lubricated during sexual intercourse and are not really wanting to depend on the types of lubricants that are out there, then this will def be helpful to you. Tissue dehydration can lead to vaginal dehydration and water is a natural lubricant that has come to your rescue!

17. Experience better and longer orgasms
When the body is hydrated properly, there is more blood flowing to the genital areas, which lead you to have better and longer orgasms! Bet this is one fact you didn’t know of!

18. Assists with hair growth
Drinking 2 liters of water a day supports the vitamins that are needed for hair growth and also helps with the strength of it from root to tip. It helps prevent split ends and brittle hair texture.

I hope this was as interesting for you as it was for me. Drinking water really has tons of benefits and it really does the body good, inside and out. If there are any fruits that you are crazy about remember you can throw them into your water to add that taste that you love. I know that there are recommendations on about how much water you should drink, and I also know that not every body is the same. The amount also varies on your age and weight and has factors that play into it. To further help you on how much water YOUR body requires you can visit and fill in your weight, activity level, and age and it will enumerate the amount of water you should be drinking. Give it a try and good luck!

Health Personal

My Experience with Epidural Spinal Injections

I’ve been having back problems for as long as I can think back. At 7 years old I was diagnosed with Scoliosis along with herniated disks in the lumbar area (the lower back). I had to wear a shoe lift in my left shoe. Due to scoliosis, my left leg was shorter than the right. Chiropractor visits were weekly to help alleviate discomfort. I always just took it day by day and lived through the pain.

Fast forward 20+ years later, the pain became significantly worse until one day in January my body could no longer take it. I could scarcely walk. My job was becoming impossible to do (which includes a lot of lifting, pulling, and pushing) and the pain was just unbearable. I began having problems driving as I could no longer sit without being in excruciating pain. Lying down gave no relief and standing was just as hard. Nothing was helping. I would just cry from desperation, pain, and even pity.

Finally, today after months of physical therapy, I decided to get Epidural Spinal Injections (ESI) and LET ME TELL YOU…… These suckers hurt! Now, please understand I have gone through a terrible labor experience – this is nothing like that…. in a good way, haha. Labor pain was definitely much worse, however, this is still quite painful. Before the procedure began the doctor numbed the area with lidocaine. I certainly felt that pinch from the needle entering my skin. She, then, inserted a needle into the joint space in my back of which was causing agony. Mine were the sacroiliac joints. That pain was intense, because she hit the nerves a couple of times as the needle was entering. I shrieked and tightened my buttocks a bit, haha, (funny, but not!). As the needle was entering my nerves, her assistant was taking fluoroscopic images (live Xrays) with a C-arm to ensure that she was inserting the needle into the right area. Once she was content with the needle placement, she injected the steroid in.

After the procedure was done, within an hour of being home, the pain was tolerable. It was a pain that was there, but you can almost not feel it (if that makes any sense), probably had a lot to do with the lidocaine still taking effect. Then, 4 hours went by and the pain became a little stronger. 8 hours later, here I am crying! Yes, really, I am crying!! I’m not sure if it’s pain from the injection site, from the nerve being traumatized, my usual back pain worsened now, or perhaps all of the above. Still, the pain has worsened and I am truly hoping for a better tomorrow.

Anyway, If you have had this procedure done before let me know what your experience was like and if you experienced any pain afterward please tell me what helped you.

If you are thinking of getting this done, remember my pain tolerance is probably much lower than yours, so don’t let this discourage you. I am simply sharing my own personal experience with this.

Remember to listen to your body and take care of your back!