Dangerous Nail Fad- Gel Manicure

Why do people get manicures? First, changing your nails can ultimately change how you feel about yourself. By selecting your color or the shape of your nail, treating yourself to a manicure can be uplifting. Second, the process is undeniably relaxing, from the hand massage, to the careful attention put to each finger. Regardless of the reason for the beauty treatment, a manicure forces you to set aside time for yourself. The yearning for beautiful nails has powered an entire industry of nail salons and has been the inspiration for new trends in nail care.

Beautiful french manicure and rose petals

Gel polish is the current frenzy. It offers the long lasting wear of acrylic nails minus the accompanying nail damage. These new gel manicures are becoming more and more popular because the coating of the polish is thinner and therefore looks more natural. Another plus is that there requires no dry-time or smudging. Right after the manicure is finished, the nails should stay shiny and chip-resistant for weeks. Should great doesn’t it?

Truth: This latest beauty treatment, gel manicures, carries with it a number of potential health risks.

These health risks may include:

#1-These “no-chip” nails are, in reality, a form of artificial nails. This means the same chemicals used in acrylic nails are also used in gel polishes.

Why should we be concerned? Acrylates can cause allergic and irritant reactions. Contact dermatitis, which is known to cause skin itching, burning, scaling, hives, blistering, and even eczema, has been shown to be associated with these compounds salon workers use as well as salon customers. Therefore, if customers and salon workers have had problems with acrylic nails, they too will have problems with gel polishes.

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#2- The gel process involves applying pre-mixed gel acrylic to the natural nails, followed by curing the nails under UV light after each coat is applied. The acrylic polymer is linked by the action of the UV light which dries it. There are about three separate coats of gel, followed by 2-3 minutes of curing under the UV light after each coat.

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Why should we be concerned? UV light is a known human hazard which can cause skin cancer. A cancer known as nail bed melanoma, is a particularly difficult type of skin cancer to treat. Dermatologists have even warned against the regular use of gel polishes due to this constant UV light exposure.

Several sites explained that the “drying” or setting process for gel manicures is done by cancer causing ultraviolet rays.

What else aren’t they telling us about these “perfectly safe” gel manicures?

  • Gel nails leaves nails thinner, causing brittleness, peeling, and cracking.
  • In order to remove the ultra-resistant gel manicure, one must have the polish soaked in acetone for anywhere from 5-15 minutes to be able to scratch it off easily.
  • When removing the polish, sometimes it is hard to scratch the gel polishes off the natural nail, so there may also be filing down with an electric file to get the gel polishes off which is very damaging to the nail.

“There have been some reported cases of nerve damage related to the chemicals and vibrations of the electric file.”

What should we do then if we desire having a gel manicure? Take a few simple, safety precautions before getting a gel manicure. In this way, we can lessen the harm and dangers of the ultraviolet rays on both our nails and skin.

Apply Sunscreen

Before you leave the house and head towards the salon, apply a generous amount of sunscreen on your hands and rub the lotion onto your skin. Dousing the skin with sunscreen before getting your nails done with gel polish can protect the delicate skin from the cancerous assets of ultraviolet rays bulging from the lamp.

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Bring Fingerless Gloves

Another way to protect your skin from this harmful UV light is to put on a pair of ultraviolet resistant fingerless gloves found at any beauty shop. These gloves will act as a protective agent to your delicate skin. Wearing these gloves and applying sunscreen onto your skin will allow you to enjoy your manicure free of unnecessary worry.

The Truth About The Meat You Eat

Truth: Chemical Additives and Preservatives are used in Meat Processing.

The rates of cancer, childhood illness and auto-immune disease are on a fast rise, and it is the food we ingest that is to blame. Processed meats are related to many poor human health conditions. Many fresh meats including beef, chicken and pork can test positive for being injected with steroids and hormones. Why is this? Many animals are injected with growth hormones and steroids with the purpose of increasing their meat production.

Processed meats are meat products that can stay on the shelf for a longer amount of time because of preservatives.  Chicken is heavily packed with additives to extend the refrigeration time. Sodium nitrate is an additive that many meat processing companies use to color the meat. This happens by making the meat look fresh by turning it the color red.

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“Nitrates such as sodium nitrate, however can be extremely harmful to many of our internal organs such as the pancreas and the liver.”

Keep in Mind! While one small serving with these preservatives may not cause any damage, these chemicals can stay in your system for years and toxic levels could build up in your body.

Other types of processed meats include:

  • Bologna
  • Bacon
  • Deli meats
  • Hot dogs
  • Meats used in canned spaghetti or ravioli
  • Pepperoni used on pizza slices

MSG is another chemical that is found in many of our processed meats. MSG can lead to many neurological problems such as migraines, Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s. It has also been associated with causing obesity and infertility.

No-MSG

Poultry

Chickens live in filthy environments. After they have been slaughtered, chickens are then injected with preservatives, including sodium lactate and potassium lactate. Bromelain and ficin are often used to help make the meat tender.

Beef

Dried meats, such as beef jerky, as well as ground beef, steaks and roasts are all injected with preservatives. Beef jerky contains butylated hydroxytoluene, which stops the meat from turning rotten. Ground beef contains chemicals such as carrageenan to help the beef stay composed. Roast beef might be injected with an unspecified water solution to keep the meat juicy.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as of today lists 3,000 food additives approved for food use in the United States. These food additives may harm our health.

In 2010, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) stated that the FDA is not guaranteeing the safety of many chemicals put in our food.

Preservatives- fall into one of two categories: those used to avoid bacterial or fungal growth and those that prevent oxidation which leads to the rotting of food.

Food Additives- The federal government defines food additives as being of unknown.

Hint! If you can’t pronounce something on an ingredients label, it is probably a food additive. Here are some common additives found in many processed foods.

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• Benzoates (used to kill microorganisms)

• Potassium Sorbate (used for killing mold)

• Carrageenan (used to create a smooth texture and thicken foods)

• Propylene Glycol (thickener and texturizer, also used as antifreeze for cars and airplanes)

• Calcium Pantothenate (calcium supplement)

• Thiamine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B supplement)

• Aspartame (sweetener)

• Disodium Guanylate (flavor enhancer)

• Cochineal (Red coloring)

• Titanium Dioxide (white coloring)

Did you know?

  • Some food and color additives have been linked to cancer, asthma and even birth defects.
  • In August of 2006, the FDA permitted the process of stopping the foodborne disease listeriosis by spraying bacteria-eating viruses on processed meats and cold cuts.

What You Can Do

  • Eat fresh, unprocessed foods grown by local farmers.
  • Check labels for additives when shopping at your grocery store.
  • Buy more whole foods and fewer “convenience foods.”

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America is the Land for Opportunity …. For Some

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Definition: The American Dream is a national philosophy of the United States. It is a set of principles in which freedom includes the opportunity for prosperity and success, and an upward social movement achieved through one’s hard work. In James Truslow Adams’s definition of the American Dream in 1931 he states, “Life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement regardless of social class or circumstances of birth.”

The awareness of the American Dream is entrenched in the United States Declaration of Independence where it declares that “all men are created equal” and that they are given certain inalienable rights by God. These inalienable rights include, “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.”

Lie: The American Dream is still going strong till this day. It is the opportunity to make individual decisions without previous confines that limit people according to their class, caste, religion, race, or background.

Millions of immigrants head to the United States each year, several illegal immigrants. They come over with false thoughts and hopes of being given a fair shot at the “American Dream.” Many are devastated once they reach America as they realize that it is not what is seems. Most Mexicans get the jobs others would rather not do, the dirty work. These people wait on corners to get picked up day after day and get paid minimal for the hours of intensive labor they put in because it is “off the books.” Another factor working against them is even when they come to America to work and make a living; more and more Americans complain that the cards are stacked against the middle class because of these immigrants.

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Many Americans are afraid that the essence of the American Dream, the belief that, as former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice often puts it, in America “it doesn’t matter where you come from, but where you’re going,” is becoming less and less true.

Over the last two decades, the middle class of America has been dug out, with having an affluent, well-educated class rising on one side and a poor and working-class majority on the other; they are faced with minimal opportunities to change their situations.

Is America Still the land of Opportunity?

“According to a new poll from Gallup, only 52% of Americans now say the country has plenty of economic opportunity, down from 57% in 2011 and a dramatic decrease from 81% in 1998.”

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In addition, a growing amount of Americans believe the U.S. economic system is “unfair” as fewer Americans see the United States as the having “plenty of opportunity” to get ahead; an attitude much different than in the past.

“Many political leaders and other observers believe economic mobility in the United States is declining,” Gallup researchers say.

The United States has prided itself for allowing economic movement for decades. The slogan, “Rags to Riches,” have long been joint and cherished. However, growing income inequality and high unemployment rates have called into question that assurance in economic opportunity.

Got Cow’s Milk?

Lie: Drinking dairy such as cow’s milk is good for you because it is high in calcium which promotes good bone health.

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Dairy is one of the most commonly reported food allergies and is often not tolerated by the gastrointestinal tract. Therefore, milk can cause bloating, constipation and even reflux for many people. This is a problem that can extend beyond lactose intolerance. Clinically, milk may also be linked to increased eczema on the skin, worsening sinus problems, migraine headaches and joint pain. Milk is considered a mucus-producing substance that aggravates congestion. Frequently, these conditions resolve or improve when milk is removed or eliminated from the diet.

Truth: Much of the “regular” milk on store shelves is NOT healthy.

Milk cows are given both growth hormones to increase their milk production and antibiotics to decrease infections.

Therefore these additives become contaminants in the milk and their effect on the human body is not entirely known.

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Cow’s milk is made specifically for calves

Has it ever crossed your mind that human beings are the only mammals who drink milk from another source other than their own mothers? No other animal does that. We adopted the terrible habit of drinking another species’ milk.

Amy Lanou Ph.D., nutrition director for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine in Washington, D.C., stated that:

“The countries with the highest rates of osteoporosis are the ones where people drink the most milk and have the most calcium in their diets. The connection between calcium consumption and bone health is actually very weak, and the connection between dairy consumption and bone health is almost nonexistent.”

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Today’s milk is a processed food

In the early years of the 19th century, milk was consumed unpasteurized or raw. Later on, homogenization became the industry’s standard. These processes altered milk’s chemistry and increased its harmful acidifying effects.

Nowadays, milking cows are given antibiotics and are also injected with a genetically engineered bovine growth hormone (rBGH). A man-made or synthetic hormone used to artificially increase milk production, rBGH increases blood levels of the insulin-growth factor 1 (IGF-1) in those who drink it. High levels of IGF-1 are linked to several cancers such as breast cancer.

The best milk substitutes

  • Unsweetened almond milk. It is alkalizing.
  • Soy milk.
  • Milk from grass-fed cows. While most cows will graze on grass at some point in their lifetime, many will be shifted to some other feed source to increase their size and milk production. Cows fed exclusively grass will be healthier and thus produce healthier milk.
  • Raw milk, which has not been pasteurized. Raw milk is a source of propionibacterium, a group of bacteria that is thought to benefit the health of the intestinal tract.

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According to Robert Cohen, Executive Director of the Dairy Education Board, milk consumption is to blame for a variety of health problems such as:

  • breast cancer
  • diabetes (both diabetes mellitus and juvenile diabetes)
  • kidney stones
  • acne
  • heart disease
  • osteoporosis
  • multiple sclerosis
  • stroke
  • rheumatoid arthritis

Luxottica owns almost all eyewear brands

Lie:  Eyewear Companies like Ray Ban, Chanel, Dolce and Gabana, Prada, Versace and Tiffany all make their own products in their own factories.

Have you ever heard of a company called Luxottica?

Luxottica is the world’s largest eyewear company which controls over 80% of the world’s chief eyewear brands. 

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History

Founder- Leonardo Del Vecchio

Leonardo Del Vecchio started the company in 1961 in a small town in Italy. Today, the company is set in Milan.

In 1967, Del Vecchio started selling complete eyeglass frames under the Luxottica brand, which proved to be quite successful. By 1971, he ended other businesses he was involved in; focusing solely on Luxottica.

The company listed in New York in 1990 and then became listed in Milan in December 2000. The listing raised money for the company and allowed it to use its shares to acquire other brands, starting with Italian brand Vogue in 1990, Persol and US Shoe Corporation (LensCrafters) in 1995, Ray-Ban in 1999 and Sunglass Hut, Inc. in 2001.  Luxottica became very prosperous, acquiring Sydney-based OPSM in 2003, Pearle Vision and Cole National in 2004.

According to Luxottica, they revolutionized how we see glasses. They renamed glasses, eyewear; making them ‘cool’ to wear.  Mostly all eyewear are designed by them, even the most well-known and expensive brands. The fashion houses send in sketches of their new collections as inspiration and the factory floor works hard to differentiate the brands. For instance, plain plastic pieces are put through a painting machine and come out Versace. Stones are inserted one by one onto the Dolce and Gabana frames and leather is carefully threaded into frames for that Chanel bag look.

Versace

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Dolce and Gabana

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Ray Bans

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Prada

Prada

Burberry

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 Ralph Lauren 

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 Chanel 

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Truth: Luxottica is the biggest eyewear company on earth which shuns publicity.

The shocking details:

·         Luxottica is a $20 billion company. 

·         It makes eyewear and sells them.

·         500 million people wear its products.

·         65 million pairs were sold in 2012.

·         It owns Ray Bans and Oakley. It also makes glasses for other brands it does not own, including Ralph Lauren, Chanel, Prada, Burberry, Prada, Tiffany, and many more.

·         Most people who buy from these stores are unaware of this truth.

·         It owns glasses stores LensCrafters, Pearle Vision, Oliver Peoples, Sunglass Hut and many others.

·         It even owns Eyemed, the nation’s most popular vision insurance company, which makes it difficult to crack down on their corruptness.

Truth: “Because it owns so much of the eyewear industry – from supply chain to distribution – Luxottica is able to charge very high prices for the glasses it sells.”

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The average frame plus lenses costs the consumer about $300 at Lens Crafters which is about 20 times more than it even costs to make them.

Question asked to LensCrafters President Mark Wickle: Since Luxottica owns LensCrafters; does the consumer get a break by the glasses made by them which are sold in LensCrafters? No, customers do not get a break.

People’s thoughts:

1.      Luxottica’s prices are unfair rip-offs. 

2.      Luxottica is a monopoly that cannot be defeated.

Take a Stand!

A New York-based startup company called, Warby Parker, wants to destroy the $20 billion dollar company that rips off its customers. The company is on a never-say-die mission to destroy Luxottica.

Connection between Poverty and Obesity

Lie: All people have the same easy access to healthy foods, regardless of where they live.

Poverty and Obesity: When Healthy Food Isn’t an Option

Even in a country as developed as ours, something as mild as the neighborhood you live in could greatly affect your lifespan. When it comes to obesity and other chronic diseases, some evidence shows that your zip code may matter more than your genetic code.

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FACTS:

  • In the 25 years between 1987 and 2010, the number of American’s diagnosed with diabetes almost tripled to 20.9 million.
  • Socioeconomic disparities can radically affect not just health, but life expectancy.
  • If a person is living on Food Stamps, they would have only $4 to buy food per day.
  • Carbohydrates are vastly cheaper that nutrients so people are just getting filled up on these low-income areas.
  • U.S. government is to blame.

Why are Low-Income and Food Insecure People Vulnerable to becoming Overweight and Obese?

Answer: Limited resources and lack of access to healthy, affordable foods.

  • Low-income neighborhoods lack full-service grocery stores and farmers’ markets where people can buy healthy fruits and vegetables. Instead, they are restricted to shopping at small neighborhood convenience stores, where fresh produce and low-fat items are limited, if available at all. 

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  • “One of the most comprehensive reviews of U.S. studies examining neighborhood disparities in food access found that neighborhood residents with better access to supermarkets and limited access to convenience stores tend to have healthier diets and reduced risk for obesity.” (Larson et al., 2009).
  • When available, healthy food is often more expensive, whereas grains, added sugars, and fats are inexpensive and readily available in communities that are of low-income.

Relationship between Poverty and Overweight or Obesity

  • Based on a large national study, body mass index (or BMI, an indicator of excess body fat) was higher every year between 1986 and 2002 among adults in the lowest income group and the lowest education group in comparison to those in the highest income and education groups.
  • Between 2003 and 2007, obesity rates increased by up to 10 percent for all U.S. children whose ages ranged from 10- 17-years old. This percentage increased by 23 percent during the same time period for low-income children.

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Think your Hybrid vehicle doesn’t have Negative Environmental Impacts? Think again!

Overview:

Hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) use multiple power sources to fuel movement. HEVs are powered by a combination of gasoline or diesel along with an electric battery that charges while the car is on. While the car reduces total gas mileage and emissions, there are still many potential environmental problems associated with it.

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Lie:  Hybrid cars are much better for the environment. “The current generation of hybrid cars use nickel metal hydride (NiMH) batteries, unlike conventional cars, which use lead-acid batteries. Lead, like all heavy metals, is a major pollutant, whereas nickel is not.”–Caterina Nelson

Negative Environmental Impacts

Electricity Sources for PHEVs

Plugging in your car to charge it does not mean you’re necessarily using clean energy. Every city and state produces electric power through diverse energy sources. According to a study by Ohio State University, “If your city’s or state’s power grid is fueled with coal or oil, you may end up emitting as much or more pollution as a traditional vehicle in order to power your car.”

Hybrids Aren’t Emission-Free

Hybrid cars do not reduce as much smog-forming emissions in the environment as people may presume. A 2004 report by the Connecticut General Assembly, stated, “When comparing a traditional compact car to its hybrid counterpart, you can expect emissions to be reduced by approximately 10 percent.” Therefore, hybrid cars still contribute to air pollution.

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Consider the Batteries

Traditional vehicles use lead-acid batteries. Lead is a toxic chemical that, when released into the environment, can cause lasting damage. Most HEVs and PHEVs use nickel-hydride and lithium-ion batteries which were thought to be better for the environment. Sadly, this belief is not true. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, nickel is a likely human poison, and wrongly disposing of nickel-hydride batteries can pose an environmental danger.

More Heavy Metals

In addition to using nickel in some HEV and PHEV batteries, HEVs and PHEVs use huge amounts of copper in in various parts of their machinery such as their electric drive motors and wiring. Copper must be mined either from open pits or underground mines in a way that can essentially lead to environmental degradation. The University of Illinois Urbana-Champagne’s Illinois Sustainable Technology Center found that copper mining contributes to air emissions of several metals and sulfuric acid. Open pit mining comprises the stripping and removing of surface grasses, trees and dirt to unearth the deposits of minerals.

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High-Voltage Wiring

Hybrid vehicles may have potential safety problems. The electric mechanisms of the vehicle that make it so fuel-efficient also mean that the engine has high-voltage wiring. Hybrid Cars.org fears that if the car happened to get into a crash and some wires are open, emergency personnel or other individuals at the crash site may get electrocuted.

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