Water bottles – unnecessary toxin

I was forwarded this PowerPoint presentation about plastic water bottles by a friend. http://surferswithoutborders.org/Water_Bottle_files/water-disaster.pps

We had already cut nearly all the plastic out of our lives and replaced them with glass containers. I recycled almost all of my plastic tupperware and drinking glasses, and we made a sweep through the fridge. Now even the mustard has a glass jar. 😉

We also installed water filters for drinking, cooking and showering. I found out that I am allergic/sensitive to manganese which is a mineral in our local water source. It was part of the problem causing my skin issues. Also, Jason wanted to eliminate the chlorine that comes from the tap water in our shower. The steam from the shower can cause lung issues and other irritation.
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I’m 22 (according to the magic scale)

We have one of those fancy scales that does everything. It says my metabolic age is 22.
What’s weird, though, is that it says that Jason is 46. I find that ridiculous because he’s in way better shape than I am – and he’s younger. Is he just getting a raw deal on the calculation because he’s male? His BMI is in the normal range. He’s muscular. In fact, he’s hot!   What gives?

Further Radiation to Avoid

In a previous blog, I mentioned that we got rid of our microwave. We’ve further refined other sources of radiation that we want to limit. After testing everything in the house, we found that the biggest source of close proximity radiation turns out to be — cell phones.

So, now we only use the cell phones to our ears for very short calls, otherwise, we try to use speaker phone or a “blue tube” headset which is air tube based so that electric radiation is not carried up the wire.

In the car, we use a bluetooth handsfree solution which came with our Toyota Prius.

Healthy Mind

One of the most important things you can do to stay young is keep an active mind. Here are some things we do to keep our brains stimulated:

Music – we play music all the time. It’s an eclectic variety. We keep a list of artists and styles that we would like to explore so that we can pick them up when we have a chance. I have iTunes set up with a complicated playlist system that randomly picks songs based on some parameters like day of the week, exercise versus relaxing, keywords for the mood, how recently the song has been heard, and so on.  We might be listening to classical, Indian, punk, prog rock, new wave, experimental, African, anything at any time.

Hobbies – I love to cook and we both enjoy creating art and photography. We like to learn about new places to visit and learn about.

Skills – We try to pick up new skills both directly related and tangentially related to our careers. For example, I might learn all about High Performance Computing and Jason about Flash. At the same time, we’ll study something about medical history or linguistics.

Challenge both sides of the brain – I have slight APD (auditory processing disorder) which is a form of auditory dyslexia. Jason has slight visual dyslexia (he’s ambidextrous and has a hard time telling left from right).  We try to challenge ourselves with activities that overcome these problems. For me, trying to talk while doing something else is a huge challenge.

Physical activity – Another great thing to do is something that challenges your mind and body at the same time. I’m practicing using a hula hoop and try to mimic dance steps that I see on TV and movies.

How I Cured My Skin Problems

I have been diagnosed with a plethora of skin issues:
and worst of all – Hidradenitis Suppurativa.

All of these started in my teens and got progressively worse throughout my twenties, especially with weight gain and too much stress.

Now, except for a minor bump here and there, my skin is pretty clear all over my body. I’m going to share the things that made the biggest difference:

1) DIET – low carb. I used to drink a lot of sugary drinks – Coke, coffee, etc. I was also a carb addict – chips, pasta, rice, bread, potatoes…
I saw an immediate change in just about everything in my health when I cut back on carbs. Even as a vegetarian, it is easy to eat more healthy vegetables and proteins and limit intake of processed sugars and starches. It’s also important to embrace healthy fats – olive oil, avocado, nuts, coconut, red palm. Changing my diet, along with exercise, also helped me lose all the excess weight. And my skin took on a healthy glow and increased in elasticity instead of being doughy.

2) Stop taking  those pharmaceuticals. My doctors had me on antibiotics, antidepressants, crap. I stopped taking those and looked for natural alternatives. I take Vitamin-A, Horsetail, anti-oxidants, and other skin feeding supplements.

3) Sulphur soap – my new dermatologist told me to avoid tea tree oil (because I could become sensitive to it) and use a sulphur soap. In addition, we recently read that tea tree oil in constant low doses (like shampoo and body wash) contributes to the development of resistant bacteria like MRSA.  So we’ve rid our toiletries of unnecessary tea tree oil (now used for specific isolated treatments only in our house). I use the sulphur soap on my face and in the shower. I also exfoliate with a natural vegatable fiber face puff and a large scrubber that gets my whole body.

4) Drink lots of water. In fact, we like sassy water – not because it’s trendy, but it really tastes good and has lots of vitamin C. Hydration keeps skins elastic and helps your body get rid of waste products.

5) I cut back on mineral supplements and only take the ones I need. I noticed that if I got too much of certain minerals, my breakouts, especially the big painful ones, would get worse. My personal theory is that bacteria thrive in mineral-laden sweat.  I thought about this when I was reading how overfertilized soil run-off is a severe breeding ground for bacteria because of the magnesium, etc. We don’t take multi-vitamins. There’s evidence that they don’t absorb right and the over load of minerals isn’t good. We take each vitamin and mineral in a proper dose separately.

6) Salycilic acid astringent – I wipe down with it twice a day and after any kind of exfoliation or hair removal. I also take a low dose (81mg) aspirin every day.

7) Laser hair removal – yes it was expensive and it hurt, but it was so, so, so worth it. I got a brazilian and had my arm pits done. This investment probably cut my hidradenit suppurativa breakouts a hundred fold by itself.

8) Laser facial for rosacea – not as painful as laser hair removal, but did make me look like I had a sunburn for a while after each treatment. However, it nearly completely removed all the red spider veins around my nose and imporved my over skin tone. I need to get a touch up every few years.

9) Remove all chemical toxins from anything that touches skin. This means osmosis filter in the shower to remove chlorine and only organic and natural products for moisturizers and makeup. Also, only natural, color and fragrance free laundry detergent.

10) Thong underwear. Yes, it helps to have free air and circulation down there. Plus, run around the house nude for a little while each day and let the sun shine on you for a few minutes. Vitamin D and aeration.

Now, this was certainly not overnight. It took a good five years of following this regimen – with certain changes taking affect more quickly than others. But it was worth the wait and the effort.

We Tossed the Microwave

It’s true. We got rid of our microwave.

Jason was reading about causes of cancer and there is some evidence to support that exposure to radiation, even at small amounts, may be enough to tip a cell into mutation.

So, I got a new toaster oven, with a dehydrator function, and built-in convection oven. I have to say that food tastes a lot better. Heating leftovers in the toaster oven makes them taste better than fresh most of the time.