I just finished reading an article about cell phone use and the potential risks associated with it. For a society addicted to using cell phones, this information may come as a surprise. Indeed, I am not trying to tell anyone how to live their lives or how to raise their children (my last post about this topic prompted some heated replies.)

We have all blindly stepped into this new world of constant connectivity, without knowing what the consequences are. Now that cellphones have been mainstream for 10 + years, we are starting to get more data about the long term risks of cell phone useage in the form of increased risk of cancers of the ears and brain, particularly in children.

Now, I will add that the studies are not all conclusive on this matter. Some of the studies indicate no elevted risk and some indicate an elevated risk. This is enough information for me to be cautious about cell phone use (I have never liked my cell phone much, anyways, and have never used it regularly. Call me stubborn or old fashioned, I just don’t see a need to be that connected at all times)

Anyways, off of my personal soapbox: Here is a link to the article from Mothering.com. Read it and digest it for yoruself:

The Risk of Radiation from Mothering.com

Yours In Health,
Shanna

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Posted by: lifeinlonsdale | September 12, 2011

7 Reasons To Avoid Soy Like The Plague

(taken from Real Food Forager)

Click on the above link.

This is a great article with facts about why soy may not the the great super food that we thought it was. Sorry for no posts lately; I have some posts in the pipeline that I am working on and will be ready for prime time soon.

Yours In Health,
Shanna

Posted by: lifeinlonsdale | February 28, 2011

The Importance of Proper Sanitation for Hot Stone Massage

I am consistently shocked to discover that there are still many massage therapists offering massage with hot stones that are not following proper (or ANY) sanitation procedure.

As a consumer of hot stone massage modalities, you should be greatly concerned with the sanitation procedures that your therapist utilizes for their stones and equipment. In 2009, this issue was brought into the light by the outbreak of a MRSA infection in a spa in Greece that had been spread by hot stones that had been improperly sanitized (if you are unfamiliar with MRSA, you should be. It is a really scary infection that is being spread in spas, locker rooms, school and hospitals all over the world. More information here: MRSA)

As a therapist, I know that properly sanitizing your stones between each client can sometimes seem tedious and like a lot of work, but it is IMPERATIVE if we are to continue to offer hot stone massage to clients. If more infections are tracked back to massage therapists and hot stones, insurance companies will no longer insure this modality and the massage consuming public will think twice before booking their next appointment.

There are easy ways to make sure that your stones are clean and ready for your next client:

* Spraying the entire surface of your stone with 100% rubbing alcohol is a cheap and effective way to sanitize them between clients.
* Order yourself some “Non Chlorine Spa Shock” (Google it on the internet). This powder is cost effective and when put into the water in your stone heating unit, will kill germs and bacteria all day long.
* At the end of the day, always wash your stones off with hot water and soap to take off any excess oils and let them air dry. This will make them fresh and clean for your next clients.

The Geothermal Therapy Association is the only certifying body exclusively for therapists who work with stones. Certification by the Geothermal Therapy Association assures you that the therapist is offering safe and effective stone massage and is using proper sanitation procedures. More information about GTA can be found here:
Geothermal Therapy Association

As a massage consumer, you have every right to ask your therapist about their sanitation procedures, and this is especially important if you are receiving Geothermal Therapy (massage with heated and/or chilled stones). With all of the scary infections floating around today, it is your health that is on the line.

Posted by: lifeinlonsdale | February 8, 2011

Sorry I haven’t been here in a while…updates from Tucson Gem Show

I will try to be better about posting here in the near future. I have just returned from the Tucson Gem Show. This is the biggest gem show in the country and I can’t even begin to describe to you how massive it is.

Shiva Lingam Stone

The Tucson Gem Show is actually a collection of many, many smaller shows (when I say “smaller”, what I mean is perhaps two or three tents the size of a football field filled with stones).

Crystal Galore!

Crystals Galore!

I was able to pick up many stones for my massage practice. There were vendors from all over the world selling stones in all shapes and sizes, artwork, cultural items (such as singing bowls and tingshas) and everything else imaginable. While I was unwrapping my stones, I was amazed to find newspaper used for packing material from China, France, Spain and other worldly destinations.

Tents and tents of stones

Tents and tents of stones

Posted by: lifeinlonsdale | February 13, 2010

Just out from: BBC News “Frankincense – a cure for cancer? “

The gift given by the wise men to the baby Jesus probably
came across the deserts from Oman. The BBC’s Jeremy Howell
visits the country to ask whether a commodity that was once
worth its weight in gold could be reborn as a treatment for
cancer.

Oman’s Land of Frankincense is an 11-hour drive southwards
from the capital, Muscat.

Most of the journey is through Arabia’s Empty Quarter –
hundreds of kilometres of flat, dun-coloured desert. Just
when you are starting to think this is the only scenery you
will ever see again, the Dhofar mountains appear in the
distance.

On the other side are green valleys, with cows grazing in
them. The Dhofar region catches the tail-end of India’s
summer monsoons, and they make this the most verdant place
on the Arabian peninsula.

Warm winters and showery summers are the perfect conditions
for the Boswellia sacra tree to produce the sap called
frankincense. These trees grow wild in Dhofar. A tour guide,
Mohammed Al-Shahri took me to Wadi Dawkah, a valley 20 km
inland from the main city of Salalah, to see a forest of
them.

“The records show that frankincense was produced here as far
back as 7,000 BCE,” he says. He produces an army knife. He
used to be a member of the Sultan’s Special Forces. With a
practised flick, he cuts a strip of bark from the trunk of
one of the Boswellia sacra trees. Pinpricks of milky-white
sap appear on the wood and, very slowly, start to ooze out.

“This is the first cut. But you don’t gather this sap,” he
says. “It releases whatever impurities are in the wood. The
farmers return after two or three weeks and make a second,
and a third, cut. Then the sap comes out yellow, or bright
green, or brown or even black. They take this.”

Shortly afterwards, a frankincense farmer arrives in a
pick-up truck. He is white-bearded, wearing a brown thobe
and the traditional Omani, paisley-patterned turban.

He is 67-year-old Salem Mohammed from the Gidad family. Most
of the Boswellia sacra trees grow on public land, but custom
dictates that each forest is given to one of the local
families to farm, and Wadi Dawkah is his turf.

Camel train

He has an old, black, iron chisel with which he gouges out
clumps of dried frankincense.

“We learnt about frankincense from our forefathers and they
learnt it from theirs” he says. “The practice has been
passed down through the generations. We exported the
frankincense, and that’s how the families in Dhofar made
their livings.”

And what an export trade it was. Frankincense was sent by
camel train to Egypt, and from there to Europe. It was
shipped from the ancient port of Sumharan to Persia, India
and China. Religions adopted frankincense as a burnt
offering.

That is why, according to Matthew’s Gospel in the Bible, the
Wise Men brought it as a gift to the infant Jesus. Gold: for
a king. Frankincense: for God. Myrrh: to embalm Jesus’ body
after death.

The Roman Empire coveted the frankincense trade. In the
first century BCE, Augustus Caesar sent 10,000 troops to
invade what the Romans called Arabia Felix to find the
source of frankincense and to control its production. The
legions, marching from Yemen, were driven back by the heat
and the aridity of the desert. They never found their
Eldorado.

Oman’s frankincense trade went into decline three centuries
ago, when Portugal fought Oman for dominance of the sea
routes in the Indian and the Pacific Oceans.

Nowadays, hardly any Omani frankincense is exported. Partly,
this is because bulk buyers, such as the Roman Catholic
Church, buy cheaper Somalian varieties. Partly, it is
because Omanis now produce so little.

“Years ago, 20 families farmed frankincense in this area,”
says Salem Mohammed Gidad. “But the younger generation can
get well-paid jobs in the government and the oil companies,
with pensions. Now, only three people still produce
frankincense around here. The trade is really, really tiny!”

Cancer hope

But immunologist Mahmoud Suhail is hoping to open a new
chapter in the history of frankincense.

Scientists have observed that there is some agent within
frankincense which stops cancer spreading, and which induces
cancerous cells to close themselves down. He is trying to
find out what this is.

“Cancer starts when the DNA code within the cell’s nucleus
becomes corrupted,” he says. “It seems frankincense has a
re-set function. It can tell the cell what the right DNA
code should be.

“Frankincense separates the ‘brain’ of the cancerous cell –
the nucleus – from the ‘body’ – the cytoplasm, and closes
down the nucleus to stop it reproducing corrupted DNA
codes.”

Working with frankincense could revolutionise the treatment
of cancer. Currently, with chemotherapy, doctors blast the
area around a tumour to kill the cancer, but that also kills
healthy cells, and weakens the patient. Treatment with
frankincense could eradicate the cancerous cells alone and
let the others live.

The task now is to isolate the agent within frankincense
which, apparently, works this wonder. Some ingredients of
frankincense are allergenic, so you cannot give a patient
the whole thing.

FRANKINCENSE FACTS
Boswellia sacra grows in Oman, Yemen and Somalia
Other Boswellia species grow in Africa and India
The tree may have been named after John Boswell, the uncle
of Samuel Johnson’s biographer
In ancient Egypt frankincense was thought to be sweat of the
gods Source: The Pharmaceutical Journal
Dr Suhail (who is originally from Iraq) has teamed up with
medical scientists from the University of Oklahoma for the
task.

In his laboratory in Salalah, he extracts the essential oil
from locally produced frankincense. Then, he separates the
oil into its constituent agents, such as Boswellic acid.

“There are 17 active agents in frankincense essential oil,”
says Dr Suhail. “We are using a process of elimination. We
have cancer sufferers – for example, a horse in South Africa
– and we are giving them tiny doses of each agent until we
find the one which works.”

“Some scientists think Boswellic acid is the key ingredient.
But I think this is wrong. Many other essential oils – like
oil from sandalwood – contain Boswellic acid, but they don’t
have this effect on cancer cells. So we are starting
afresh.”

The trials will take months to conduct and whatever results
come out of them will take longer still to be verified. But
this is a blink of the eye in the history of frankincense.

Nine thousand years ago, Omanis gathered it and burnt it for
its curative and cleansing properties. It could be a key to
the medical science of tomorrow.

Jeremy Howell reports for

on BBC World News.
Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/middle_east/8505251.st
m

Published: 2010/02/09 10:59:45 GMT

Posted by: lifeinlonsdale | December 5, 2009

Massage May Help Those with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Avoid Surgery

This is where you would feel numbness if you had carpal tunnel syndrome

Carpal Tunnel has become a very common condition (more so than 20 years ago, as we spend a lot more time on the computer now at our jobs, often in positions that are not ergonomically friendly.)

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome happens when the median nerve becomes compressed as it travels through the Carpal Tunnel (a bracelet of connective tissue on the inside of your wrist). There are a number of tendons that also run through this tunnel, making it a relatively tight space. It is when these tendons become inflamed that the median nerve becomes compressed.

Inflammation of these tendons can happen for a number of reasons, but the most common is a repetitive strain injury that happens as a result of working in a job that involves extensive computer work, or working at a repetitive job in a factory.

In addition, carpal tunnel syndrome can easily be mis-diagnosed (Thoracic Outlet Syndrome can cause the same pattern of numbness and tingling in the wrists and hands.)

In my experience, massage therapy can be an effective tool in relieving carpal tunnel symptoms and can help you to avoid a surgery that at best is painful and long to recover from, and at the worst can be completely ineffective in relieving symptoms.

Relieving trigger points in the forearm and lengthening the muscles and tendons that run through the carpal tunnel can help to relieve symptoms. In particular, the style of massage that I do with hot and cold stones can give the additional benefit of increasing the circulation as well as helping to relieve additional inflammation in the carpal tunnel.

I can also show you simple stretching and massage exercises that you can do for yourself in the morning and before bed that can drastically improve symptoms.

In a study done by the Touch Research institute, participants that received massage for their carpal tunnel had a reduction in pain and numbness, as compared to a control group who received no massage.

In my opinion, Carpal Tunnel surgery should be a last resort, after all other options have been exhausted. Many doctors give patients the impression that surgery is their only option (I don’t think that this is intentional, I think that most of the time, it is because they don’t know that other options exist.) Whatever treatment plan you decide on, I implore you to explore all available options in the treatment of your carpal tunnel syndrome.

Posted by: lifeinlonsdale | October 30, 2009

What is Homeopathy?

An Article by Sally Tamplin
http://www.Flusolution.net

What is Homeopathy?

Homeopaths treat the individual, not the disease. A homeopathic remedy is prescribed upon the totality of an individual’s symptoms taken from the mental, emotional and the physical levels. The aim of classical homeopathic prescribing is to not only to address the symptoms but also to help the individual to deal with the cause of the illness and to regain good health. Remedies come from many different sources. Most are derived from plants, but animal products, minerals and metals are used as well.

There are many methods to affect the body’s energy. The better known ones are acupuncture, healing touch, and some others. Homeopathy is one such method. Homeopathic remedies are, in effect, energetic messages administered in the form of a pellet or a drop of liquid that can be taken by mouth. It may sound too incredible, but the 200 year – old system of medicine has survived multiple attempts to discredit it, and its practitioners are now more numerous than ever. In fact, it now boasts a large body of medical research that proves its effectiveness as compared to placebo (a sugar pill).

Another way of looking at this is to make an analogy with a computer. When a computer malfunctions, the problem could be the hardware, but the software issues are also common. All sorts of software viruses, bugs, etc; can affect the computer functioning. A good technician must look at both sides of the equation to fix the machine. The same applies to the human body. The energy we talk about is probably something like the body’s software, which can be “bugged”. Homeopathic remedies then are the debugging programs, Like Norton or MacAffee “anti – virus”.

Homeopathic remedies are prescribed according to the Law of Similars.The law states, “That which makes sick shall heal.” This means that the symptoms caused by an overdose of a substance are the symptoms that can also be cured by a small dose of that same substance. As an example, we know that when we cut up an onion most people experience an acrid runny nose, soreness in the throat and stinging, runny eyes. A homeopath will prescribe Allium cepa, this is the homeopathic remedy made from the onion for the individual who has a cold and sore throat with these symptoms. Therefore, homeopathy uses medicines prepared from natural substances that are similar to the illness in contrast to conventional or allopathic medicine, which treats and often suppresses the patient’s symptoms with large amounts of drugs, which have an opposite effect.

A well-chosen homeopathic remedy seems to act as a signal, which energizes or stimulates the body’s self-healing powers, mobilizing the defense systems and working on all aspects of the body, mental, emotional and physical.

After initial preparation of the raw material the remedies are made by serial dilution and succussion (vigorous shaking) in a solution of alcohol and water. This is done a few times or up to many thousands of times. The liquid dilution is then used itself as a remedy
or soaked into tablets or granules for convenience. The diluted remedies are described as being “potentised,” in recognition of the dynamic healing power that they can stimulate. Frequently the dilutions are so great that no chemical trace of the original substance remains.

Homeopathy works really well in times of acute trauma. The remedies can be given on the way to the hospital and there is no known interaction between a homeopathic remedy and a conventional drug. The American Pharmacists Association has even written about this in their handbook!

In first aid situations if the remedy is prescribed correctly you will be able to see an effect with any potency and remember, do not repeat the remedy if the patient feels much better and is well on the road to recovery. Beginners are usually advised to use low potencies.

The 30 c potency is available in most stores and is usually safe to use as long as it is not repeated unnecessarily. One dose of a 30c is usually sufficient to begin the process of cure. On the other hand, a dose of 30c will rarely cause an aggravation, with the exception of highly sensitive individuals.

Posted by: lifeinlonsdale | October 22, 2009

Wellness in a cup

Herbal tea

Herbal tea

Even though I don’t follow my own advice all the time, I really do believe that what we put into out bodies makes a HUGE impact on our health.

I drink a lot of tea and have been learning a lot recently about our plant allies and the various functions they can perform for our continued wellness.

This season, I am offering a tea for sale that can help you to keep those nasty viruses at bay. Stay Well herbal tea is filled with organic ingredients to help bolster your immune system:

Echinacea purpurea herb: echinacea increases the number and activity of immune system cells. It increases the amount of T-cells and macrophages in the bloodstream. It also increases the amount of Interferon, Interleukin, Immunoglobulin and other important natural immune chemicals present in your blood (http://www.healingdaily.com/detoxification-diet/echinacea.htm).

Lemon balm:
Lemon Balm has a “proven beneficial influence upon the nervous system, heart/ circulatory system, and digestive system”. Lemon Balm also has “anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-septic, and anti-microbial properties.” (http://www.herballegacy.com/Morrison_Medicinal.html)

Olive leaf: “Olive leaf extract (oleuropein) is a natural wide-spectrum antibiotic, anti-bacterial, anti-viral,anti-fungal compound. Unlike synthetic antibiotics, it destroys only the bad bacteria and protects the good. Medical research suggests that when Oleuropein is taken orally, it searches out and “inactivates” the bacteria. It does this by dissolving the outer lining of the infectious germs and then it penetrates the infected cells, thus inhibiting the replication of the bacteria.” (http://www.bodyandfitness.com/Information/Herbal/Research/olive.htm))

Elder flower and berries: ” small study published in 2004 showed that 93% of flu patients given extract were completely symptom-free within two days; those taking a placebo recovered in about six days. This current study shows that, indeed, it works for type A flu, reports lead researcher Erling Thom, with the University of Oslo in Norway.” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sambucus)

Lemon peel: “citrus serves as a tonic to the digestive system, immune system, and skin, while increasing circulation to extremities. Lemon peel is used to treat and prevent vitamin deficiencies, colds, flu, an scurvy as well as digestive or gastrointestinal problems by stimulating the appetite and encouraging the release of gastric juices to digest food.” (http://www.localharvest.org/blog/25051/entry/simple_old_lemon_peel)

Goldenseal herb:
“This herb has a long history of use as an antibiotic and anti-microbial, and has enjoyed recent popularity as an adjunct to Echinacea for support during colds and flu. Goldenseal is a widely used and recommended antiseptic. Native Americans traditionally used goldenseal for digestive, respiratory and urinary disorders.” (http://pages.prodigy.net/naturedoctor/immune.html

Ginger root:
“Ginger’s effects against infection have also been confirmed by laboratory science. One ginger compounds kills cold viruses at a concentration of less than one part per million, a concentration to that found in raw ginger.” (http://www.mountainroseherbs.com/learn/ginger.php)

Posted by: lifeinlonsdale | October 14, 2009

A Poisonous Sweetener

Artificial Sweetener

Artificial Sweetener

taken from: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/a-poisonous-sweetener.html

A Poisonous Sweetener
posted by Megan, selected from Green Options Oct 13, 2009 3:12 pm
According to a UK documentary, “Sweet Misery,” the National Cancer Institute identified a significant and impressive increase in brain cancer starting in about 1984. Why did brain cancer shoot up? Evidence suggests that it is because of artificial sweeteners such as those found in diet drinks and food.

Scientists noticed that in 1983 humans began consuming something never before consumed by humans — aspartame, a chemically created substance acting as a sugar alternative used in diet drinks, food, and even on the table in most restaurants (i.e. NutraSweet, Crystallite, Equal).

Increase in Aspartame, Increase in Brain Cancer

According to the documentary, in 1984, one year after its introduction, 6.9 million pounds of aspartame were consumed by Americans. In the next year, that number doubled. It continued increasing into the ’90s. This spike in Aspartame consumption parallels the spike in brain cancer.

From 1984-1987, other cancers outside the brain basically remained the same or declined. However, brain cancer rates shot up.

Scientists confirmed that the increase in brain cancers is not due to technological advancements that made diagnosing brain cancer easier and it is not a result of changes in disease classifications.

Why is it suggested that aspartame has this neurological effect?

Scientists think that it is because 10 percent of the chemical substance, after congestion, becomes free methyl alcohol (wood alcohol), which as one scientist in the film states, is a “real poison.” Another says, “the poisonous effect of methyl alcohol and its methyl esters are well-known.” Even small amounts of this poison can lead to blindness and death. The “miniscule” amounts in our common foods and drinks seem to sometimes lead to cancer and other neurological conditions such as multiple sclerosis.

Bottom line — maybe it’s time to cut artificial sweeteners out of your diet!

Posted by: lifeinlonsdale | September 19, 2009

Getting ready for flu season, part 1

Get a massage!  Boost your immune system!

Get a massage! Boost your immune system!

Much has been said in the media and from other sources about preparing for the H5N1 Swine Flu. Schools and business are putting plans in place to deal with the expected outbreak in 4-6 weeks.

On a personal level, there are measures that you and your family can take to bolster your immune system and prepare for the upcoming flu season:

Take your vitamins: Your body needs the appropriate fuel to keep your immune system functioning at optimal levels, so taking a daily multi vitamin will help you bolster your immune system. When I feel myself coming down with something, I take the “Airborne” product. It is available at most stores (Walgreens, Target, etc.) and has a blend of vitamins and herbs especially meant to help boost your immune system in case of attack.

Drink Plenty of water: I know we all hear this all the time, but I think that this is the single most important factor in the health of your immune system and you body in general. 8-10 glasses a day! Come on, I know you can do it!

Get a massage: Many studies have shown therapeutic massage to boost the immune system. A 1996 study on HIV/Aids patients showed an increase in beneficial immune system cells after receiving regular massage sessions. Massage can also be great when you are getting over being sick, to help your body recover more quickly. Feel great AND help your immune system! You can’t lose.

In addition to these common sense ways to stay well, I offer a few specialized treatments that can help you to stay well or get better!:

Ear candling: A gentle, non-invasive treatment that can painlessly
removes excess ear wax from the ear canal. I had the opportunity to
experience this treatment while in Washington, and I got a lot of
benefit from it (I had been having intermittent dizziness for quite a while, and once the extra wax was removed, the dizziness immediately went away!) Great for someone who is recovering from a head cold or has ear or sinus congestion!

Rainbath Ceremony: An invigorating treatment that uses
therapeutic grade essential oils with heated and chilled stones. Many
essential oils have immune boosting properties, and because of the
application of the oils in this treatment directly on the spine, the
oils immediately affect the body and immune system, leaving you
feeling refreshed and energized. This is a great treatment to help
you get over a lingering cold or flu, or to be used proactively to
strengthen the immune system.

Stone Reflexology: Reflexology is a gentle, relaxing therapy using pressure applied to specific points on the feets that brings all of the complex systems of your body back into balance. Reflexology is a very relaxing treatment that can help boost the immune system and give you an incredible sense of wholeness and wellbeing.

I will make another post soon about essential oils that can be used to boost the immune system! Please call 507-744-2490 or visit www.CreatureComfortsBodywork.com to book an appointment for a treatment!

Yours in Health,
Shanna

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