Pippa’s Wedding Day

Brides are simply beautiful, wedding days a joyous occasion to our delight. Everyone wants to see the bride’s dress, and how overcome with love the groom becomes when he catches the first glimpse of his bride as she begins her walk down the aisle to meet him. Celebrating Pippa Middleton’s wedding, I share a few sources of stunning photos capturing the beauty, love and delight of this special day.

This photo is shared from the story covered in the HuffingtonPost – Click the link <- or the photo to read the story of the day’s festivities and see many more gorgeous photos:

ENGLEFIELD GREEN, ENGLAND - MAY 20: Pippa Middleton arrives at the wedding of Pippa Middleton and James Matthews at St Mark's Church on May 20, 2017 in Englefield Green, England. (Photo by Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage)

ENGLEFIELD GREEN, ENGLAND – MAY 20: Pippa Middleton arrives at the wedding of Pippa Middleton and James Matthews at St Mark’s Church on May 20, 2017 in Englefield Green, England. (Photo by Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage)

Then stroll over to the What Kate Wore Facebook Page, and Telegraph News for links to additional photos and coverage of this beautiful day and the details of Pippa’s dress. Enjoy!

Zinc Lozenges May Shorten Days of Cold Symptoms

Have a cold? Wish it would go away? Now you may be able to help along the symptoms of the common cold, and get back to feeling better in a shorter time. A new research study has shown the effectiveness of higher dose zinc lozenges to shorten the duration of a cold significantly.

Zinc Lozenges may help shorten the common cold!

“According to a meta-analysis of three randomized controlled trials zinc acetate lozenges may increase the rate of recovery from the common cold three fold. On the fifth day, 70% of the zinc lozenge patients had recovered compared with 27% of the placebo patients….The dose of zinc in the three studies was between 80 to 92 mg/day.”

What are the best zinc lozenges to use? Seems like there is a little bit to the proper selection of lozenges to have this type of effect on your cold. You need to find a lozenge with the right concentration of zinc, and one which does not contain substances that will bind the zinc ions, not allowing for full effectiveness, ingredients such as citric acid.

“Although the lead author, Dr. Harri Hemilä from the University of Helsinki, Finland, suggests that the optimal formulation of zinc lozenges and the best frequency of their administration should be further investigated, he also instructs common cold patients to test individually whether zinc lozenges are helpful for them: “given the strong evidence of efficacy and the low risk of adverse effects, common cold patients may already be encouraged to try zinc acetate lozenges not exceeding 100 mg of elemental zinc per day for treating their colds.””

Don’t you think giving a try of a zinc lozenge is worth a try for a few days to see it if works for you? I know I wouldn’t mind, especially if I needed to share an office space with you all day while you are sniffing, blowing, coughing and sneezing!


Quotations cited from ScienceDaily.com:

Journal Reference:

  1. Harri Hemilä, James T. Fitzgerald, Edward J. Petrus, Ananda Prasad. Zinc Acetate Lozenges May Improve the Recovery Rate of Common Cold Patients: An Individual Patient Data Meta-Analysis. Open Forum Infectious Diseases, 2017; 4 (2) DOI: 10.1093/ofid/ofx059

Health Benefits of Coffee – Made the Italian Way

We Italians, (or Eeeeeetalians as “Marco in a Box” in his “How to be Italian – 20 rules Italians never break  likes to say), LOVE our espresso and coffee. Our tried and true method of creating the perfect cup has been around for centuries.

Dr. David B. Samadi, on his blog, has recently shared a new health benefit for those men among us who are regular coffee drinkers – with the caveat of it must by made the Italian way.

Cappuccino

“A new study from Italy (where coffee-drinking borders on religion) indicates that men drinking three or more cups of Italian-style coffee daily may reduce their chances of prostate cancer by fifty percent. The new research was designed by the Department of Epidemiology and Prevention – I.R.C.C.S. Neuromed, Italy which collaborated with the Italian National Institute of Health and the I.R.C.C.S. Istituto Dermopatico dell’Immacolata of Rome.”

Ahhhh, my Roman people, so creative and healthy! Mind you, the coffee in the study was caffeinated, and made in a specific way.

“The researchers discovered that the caffeinated coffee extracts reduced the aggregation of cancer cells and decreased their ability to metastasize, but these effects were almost non-existent with decaffeinated coffee extracts. The observations on cancer cells allow us to say that the beneficial effect observed among the 7,000 participants is most likely due to caffeine, rather than to the many other substances contained in coffee,” notes study co-author Maria Benedetta Donati.”

So is it the caffeine or the polyphenols, or both together which produces the anti-cancer benefits?

“They prepare coffee [the] rigorously Italian way: high pressure, very high water temperature, and with no filters,” says study co-author Licia Iacoviello. “This method, different from those followed in other areas of the world, could lead to a higher concentration of bio-active substances.”

Italians drink coffee as traditional rituals, certain times of the day, specific type of coffee and add the social customs along with it. A morning espresso is pretty much consumed as a shot, in one or two slurps. Your day can now begin! Other coffee drinks include friends to chat with, seats positioned to people watch, situated to invite others to stop by and join in the leisurely, and sometimes boisterous, conversations. Hands waving, opinions argued, solutions presented, and much shared friendship abound. Could it be the shared social community have an influence on health, as well?

Thanks for sharing this great health news, Dr. Samadi!

Which Kentucky Derby Hat is You?

The Kentucky Derby is such a fun and frolicky annual horse race, filled with tradition and beauty. From the gorgeous horses to the traditional mint juleps, there is anticipation and excitement in the air. What I love most about the Kentucky Derby is selecting “my” horse to cheer on and, always, seeing the beautiful hats on display everywhere!

“The long-established fashion was started with Col. Meriwether Lewis Clark Jr.’s vision for the Derby as an event that the high-class would attend, similar to European-style racing events, which mandated full morning dress for men and women. For the first running of the Kentucky Derby, he used high-class women to recruit his target clientele to attend the race. The event quickly became just as much about the fashion as the racing. Going to a horse racing event became an opportunity to show off the latest in spring fashion and women were known to coordinate their hats, dresses, bags, shoes, and even parasols.” *

I’m posting a few hats for you to enjoy from the official Kentucky Derby website as well as my personal choice if I were going this year!

  1. Playful and fun!

2. “Look at me!” (I like the shoulder sun protection this hat offers!)

3. This one has the floral embellishment underneath the brim – beautiful!

4. Such fun for men, too!

5. My choice from Berkeley Hats (where you will find many, many more lovely hats to order!)

Cheers to a great race and very fun day!

Lasik Surgery Reduces Eye Infections

If you wear contact lenses every day, reduced infection rate is now another reason to have Lasik eye surgery. Opthalmologists from the Hamilton Eye Institute, University of Tennessee Health Science Center, have completed a study which shows a small, but significant lower rate of eye infections in individuals post Lasik surgery when compared to daily contact wearers. Microbial keratitis is an infection that attacks the cornea, and causes significant long term vision issues, including devastating vision loss.

“An article on the findings was published in the Journal of Cataract & Refractive Surgery, a high-impact, peer-reviewed scientific journal. “Microbial keratitis is a relatively rare complication associated with contact lens use and LASIK postoperatively,” the article said. The authors were Jordan Masters, MD; Mehmet Kocak, PhD; and Aaron Waite, MD. “The risk for microbial keratitis was similar between patients using contact lenses at one year, compared with LASIK. Over time, the risk for microbial keratitis was higher for contact lens use than for LASIK, specifically with extended-wear lenses.”

I wish they had included those who took their contacts out every day to clean and rest their eyes, changing the lenses every two weeks, and also those who use daily lenses, which are disposed of every day, starting the next day with a fresh, sterile set of lenses. I use the daily wear lenses, and have been thinking about Lasik surgery, but am still a little nervous about getting good results, and the possibility of surgical complications.

The researchers did go on to say that the rate of this type of infection is rare, but has long term devastating affects for those who do acquire it. I also wonder if they compared the compliance and routine of cleaning the lenses of those they compared to, although the more times our fingers touch the lenses, the higher the risk for any infection. Interesting study!

Excerpts cited from ScienceDaily.com

Tips to Looking Younger While Enjoying the Sun

We all know by now that years of sun exposure will eventually take it’s toll on our skin and appearance, and put us as risk for multiple types of skin cancer. Wearing sunscreen, staying out of the sun during peak hours of the day, and wearing sun protective clothing is very important to keeping our skin healthy and our appearance as youthful as possible!

“…Board-certified dermatologist Arianne Shadi Kourosh, MD, MPH, FAAD, director of community health and co-director of the multiethnic skin clinic in the department of dermatology at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston” reports that “environmental factors can damage the skin in multiple ways, from UVB rays causing sunburns and uneven pigmentation to UVA and infrared radiation penetrating more deeply into the skin to damage existing collagen and reduce collagen production, resulting in wrinkles and sagging skin. Habitual UV exposure can cause blood vessels to become more prominent, causing skin redness, she says, while visible light and pollution can cause uneven skin tone, especially in darker skin types. Moreover, other forms of radiation, such as heat and visible light, can negatively impact the skin, as can pollution, so protecting your skin from the environment can benefit both your health and appearance.”

Sun protective factors of 25 – 30 are sufficient to protect us from 95 – 97% of UV radiation. Using skin care products with antioxidants will also help in protecting our skin from environmental pollution and free radical damage.

“Since both types of UV rays can damage the skin, Dr. Kourosh says, it’s important to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen that provides both UVA and UVB protection, with an SPF of 30 or higher. She recommends sunscreens containing the active ingredients zinc oxide or titanium dioxide as a good source of broad-spectrum protection suitable for sensitive skin. She also says formulations containing antioxidants may provide some protection against uneven skin tone and aging caused by free radical damage from infrared light, visible light and pollution.”

I have just the product that has both 25 SPF for broad spectrum UVA and UVB sun protection as well as antioxidant ingredients. Celloxylin Day Defense Plus from Apriori Beauty has the following ingredient profile:

Active ingredients (purpose – Sunscreen): Avobenzone 3%, Homosalate 3%, Octisalate 3%, Octocrylene 2.79%. Inactive Ingredients: Acetyl Glucosamine, Acetyl Octapeptide-3, Acrylamide/Sodium Acryloyldimethyltaurate Copolymer, Angelica Polymorpha Sinensis Root Extract, Betaine, Butylene Glycol, Butyrospermum Parkii Butter, Caffeine, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Caprylyl Glycol, Carnitine HCL, Cetearyl Olivate, Cetyl Alcohol, Dehydroacetic Acid, Dicaprylyl Carbonate, Dimethicone, Dimethiconol, Fragrance*, Glycerin, Glyceryl Stearate, Glycyrrhetinic Acid, Hexylene Glycol, Hyaluronic Acid, Hydroxyproline, Isohexadecane, Lecithin, Linoleic Acid, Lycium Barbarum (Goji Berry) Fruit Extract, Mica, Oleic Acid, Palmitic Acid, PEG-100 Stearate, Pentylene Glycol, Petasites Japonicus Root Extract, Phenoxyethanol, Phytosteryl Canola Glycerides, Polyethylene, Polysilicone-11, Polysorbate 80, Potassium Sorbate, Resveratrol Acetate, Rhodiola Rosea (Golden Root) Extract, Silica, Sorbitan Oleate, Sorbitan Olivate, Stearic Acid, Sucrose, Tocopherol, Tremella Fuciformis Sporocarp (Mushroom) Extract, Triolein, Ubiquinol, Water (Aqua), Xanthan Gum.*Fragrance made up of all-natural ingredients.

Key Ingredients

Lyceum Barbarum Fruit Extract (Goji Berry) — super antioxidant
Tremella Fuciformis (Mushroom) — extraordinary moisturizer, antioxidant
Resveratrol — cellular regenerator, anti-inflammatory
Acetyl Glucosamine — skin brightener, moisturizer; provides connective tissue support

Like to know more about this excellent product and where to purchase?

 

Southern California Spring This Year!

We are having a glorious spring this year, after years of drought, and I wanted to share some of the natural beauty with you! Enjoy!

 

We’re having what’s called a “Super Bloom” – so gorgeous!

More “Super Bloom”!

 

The Sounds of Nature Do Calm Our Stress

Does the sound of rain calm you? How about the sounds of a waterfall, or wind blowing or crickets chirping or birds singing? Now there is scientific evidence showing the sounds of nature do exert a calming influence over our stressed minds and bodies.

[Read more…]

Castor Oil Treatment for Hair Loss?

Hair loss comes from a variety of causes and conditions. Stress, vitamin or mineral deficiencies, thyroid issues, menopause, heredity and many more conditions can lead to the loss of hair at different times of life.

I’m experiencing hair loss, not quite sure exactly why as I have a few of the above mentioned conditions. I tried several different shampoos and conditioners, asked my doctor if my health could be the reason, and asked my hair stylist what she thought. Came up with not a whole lot of help, but did find some information and testimonials about the use of castor oil mixed with other oils as a hair treatment. I’m game – what do I have to lose but more hair, right?

Castor Oil hair treatment is as easy as any hot oil treatment. Mix equal parts castor oil with a base oil such as coconut oil, or jojoba oil. Dampen hair, apply oil, wrap with a warm moist towel and let it absorb from 30 minutes to 6 hours, or something similar to this.

Here’s a link to an easy step by step guide for Castor Oil Hair Treatment from WikiHow. [Read more…]

Eating Soy Improves Health in Some Breast Cancers

There has been conflicting advice about whether or not eating soy and soy isoflavones is harmful if you’re at risk or have had breast cancer. New research has shown a positive effect on the health in those with some types of breast cancer with the regular consumption of soy.

Is Soy Safe? - Plant Based Dietitian

Soy

An epidemiological analysis of data from more than 6,000 American and Canadian women with breast cancer finds that post-diagnosis consumption of foods containing isoflavones — estrogen-like compounds primarily found in soy food — is associated with a 21 percent decrease in all-cause mortality. This decrease was seen only in women with hormone-receptor-negative tumors, and in women who were not treated with endocrine therapy such as tamoxifen. [Read more…]

Healthy Gut, Healthy Mind

Recent research is again showing healthy gut flora correlates with a healthy mind and decrease in depressive like or despair behavior. Lead researcher Alban Gaultier, PhD, and her team have produced significant findings of this gut-mind connection with the hope of repeating these results in humans.

[Read more…]

Waiting Expectantly

He looked for him from sunrise to sunset. Day after day he waited.

Waiting for the lost to return

Why did he give him all of his inheritance when he demanded it? The old father knew his son was going to blow it away. And he did.

Maybe he heard about him from passersby over the months he was away. Maybe he knew in his heart his son had always had a streak of rebellion in him, a headstrong young man, knowing better than anyone else, tired of doing everything the old way of his family traditions.

In one big fit of rejecting his father’s ways, he demanded all the money that would come to him after his father died and set out to live the high life, on his own terms.

But we know how it’s going to end. He will blow through all his newly acquired fortune, spending lavishly on his self centered lifestyle and new “friends.” Until the money runs out, the friends disappear, and he’s left to support himself.

In this story of the Prodigal Son, the rebellious son ends up hired to feed swine in someone’s fields. Soon he hits rock bottom, eating the husks he was feeding the swine to survive.

Then he comes to his senses, and realizes how good he really had it. How much his father loved him. Longing for his home, his family, the delicious meals, and the traditions of his heritage, he heads home.

“But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck and kissed him.” Luke 15.20

When he was a great way off, far down the road, barely visible to the eye.

His father intently studied the road all day long, day after day, for the little speck on the horizon. The father waited, with faith that one day he would see a familiar stride, and a longed for silhouette. He hoped with earnest expectation, trusted he would one day come home. The father watched with expectancy.

Can you see it? Can you see what the father is looking at and for? Can you feel the pain and emptiness in his heart for his long lost son? To be able to wrap his arms around him again, know he is okay, part of his family once more. Once separated but now home.

I know many of you have a prodigal in your life right now, or maybe several prodigals. Left to themselves, hoping against hope they one day realize they’re not on the right track, they’re choices are not good, they’re not in a good place, and they decide to finally come home. I want to encourage you.

To wait in hope.

To wait expectantly.

To not give up.

To trust them to God.

Keep on praying for them, keep on hoping, keep waiting, and look for the answers to your prayers each day.

Ruth Graham has a beautiful article written to encourage us with prodigals on how to hope and pray for them -please click the link below to be encouraged, and never give up!

Ruth Bell Graham’s 5 Truths on Prodigals and Those Who Love Them

What’s Next After You’ve Interviewed

What are the appropriate next steps after you’ve interviewed for a new job? You can make it somewhat easier if you confirm what the next steps are before you leave the interview, during your final face to face.

Before you leave the interview:

  1. Let them know how much you have enjoyed meeting them.
  2. Say one or two things specifically you appreciated discussing during the interview.
  3. It is very appropriate at this time to ask “What are the next steps?”
  4. Make sure you have the names/business cards/titles of everyone in the interview.
  5. Confirm, even repeat back to them, when you should expect to hear next from them.

[Read more…]

Our Stronghold

I need to escape to my stronghold, my place of safety, after a brutal week. How about you? Rough week, too?

Rough WeekWhether it’s family, health, work or financial issues, or more, I invite you to join me in going to a place of safety with which to escape for a bit. What is your stronghold like? If you don’t have one yet, what would you like it to be like? Mine begins with a window that overlooks trees and hills, the house is quiet, and I have a few chocolate chips near by. Then I focus my heart and thoughts on my place of safety and the one who keeps me safe.

My week was filled with many things out of my control, demanding extra time, more resources, greater complexity, some of which left me feeling used and abused. How about you? Bad news come your way at the worst possible time? Dealing with issues where you feel like it’s 2 steps forward and 10 steps back? Feeling like you don’t have the energy, time, resources to manage? [Read more…]

4 Steps to Applying Skin Care for Greatest Benefit

Do we know if the order of applying our skin care products aids or deters them being absorbed fully, giving us the full benefits of our products? Dermatology researchers now tell us it is important to prioritize the order in which we apply our cleansers, serums, medications and lotions.

Cleanse facial skin first

“Medications or treatments should be applied directly after washing your face,” said board-certified dermatologist Susan C. Taylor, MD, FAAD. “This ensures that the medications or treatments are properly absorbed by the skin. Otherwise, people may think a product isn’t working because it’s applied in the wrong order.”

My experience goes along with what Dr. Taylor suggests as the optimum order of application: [Read more…]

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