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Organic Planet FEATURE:









Delicious Gluten-Free Baking Mixes PLUS added Fibre and Omega-3 Fatty Acids. Additional Omega-3 fatty acids are important for anyone on a gluten-free diet, as research has shown that although the majority of celiac symptoms improve after switching to a gluten free diet, essential fatty acid deficiencies can remain. Purely Bulkʼs gluten-free baking mixʼs are naturally fortified with fibre and Omega-3 fatty acids (ALA and DHA from Smartgrain® chia and sprouted flax). Purely Bulk Gluten-free mixes taste great, have a texture similar to conventional, gluten-containing foods and are easy to prepare! •

Issue 93 | February 2014




Put Your Heart Into Health: Naturopathic Approaches to Heart Health By Allana Polo, ND Make changes now for a better future



Heart Healthy Nutrients That Support Longevity Jolie Root LPN, LNC Help your heart to health


The Importance of Healthy Circulation


The Calcium Controversy By Marva Ward CNP Learn more about this crucial mineral


Simple Steps to Super Health By Lucretia Schanfarber Avoiding the harmful effects of toxins


Interview: Lisa Petty Talks Nutrition, Fitness, and Living Vibrantly Learn to feel great, look fabulous and live well



This issue of


proudly brought to you by:


Trent E. Nellis - Publisher, Vista Magazine


ccording to the Canadian Heart And Stroke Foundation, heart disease and stroke continue to be the leading causes of hospitalization amongst Canadians. There are an estimated 70,000 heart attacks yearly in Canada and approximately 16,000 Canadians die each year from heart attack. These numbers are staggering, yet they continue to decrease as we become more aware of the causes of heart disease and are actively involved in our own preventative measures through diet, exercise and supplementation. In this our Heart Health issue, we present you with several informative pieces including medicinal herbs proven beneficial for proper circulation, dietary supplements that deliver the necessary nutrients we may not be getting from our food that can improve overall function of the heart, and the reintroduction of heart healthy nutrients that promote longevity and our quality of life. We all know someone who has been affected by heart disease and as technology improves and our knowledge base increases, we can see that heart disease is one of the preventable ailments that Canadians battle every day. If we are proactive and make efforts to use the knowledge we have gained in respect to prevention, we can beat heart disease by stopping it before it occurs. Our cover story this issue is on Canadian health expert Lisa Petty. Lisa is a nutrition and health expert for TV, radio and print. She is an internationally renowned radio show host, award-nominated journalist, highly sought after media personality, and nutrition expert. Lisa shares her unique perspective in one-on-one coaching, seminars, via her extensive writing and on the airwaves every week. We are fortunate to have Lisa as a staple in the Canadian health landscape. To you all I declare, “Walk the walk of prevention and talk the talk of longevity. Life is a glorious journey that need not be hampered with ill health”.

Trent E. Nellis, Publisher To contact Trent Nellis via e‑mail, write to


Trent Nellis


Dan Tidsbury


Shelly Lynn Nellis


Michelle Beaudry


Dan Tidsbury




Photography: Todd Duncan Styling: Janet Devins Hair and Makeup: Chantal Hubens for Judy Inc Location: The Old Winery 2228 Niagara Stone Road Niagara On The Lake 905.468.8900 CONTRIBUTING WRITERS:

Allana Polo, Dr Cory Holly, Dan Tidsbury, David Suzuki, Ian Hanington, Jesse Vernon Trail, Jolie Root, Lucretia Schanfarber, Marva Ward, Michael Bloch, Shelly Lynn Nellis, Tracy Kaye Holly

VISTA Magazine Suite 451, 15216 North Bluff Road White Rock, BC, V4B 0A7 Tel (604) 591-9991 or (877) 905-7771 e-mail

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sarily reflect those of the vista Magazine publisher, editors or staff. Readers are encouraged to consult with their health professional before embarking

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Issue 93 | February 2014



30 31


Rail versus pipeline is the wrong question By David Suzuki with contributions from Ian Hanington, Senior Editor Reframing the debate


Recipe for Health Stuffed Potato Skins By Tracy Kaye Holly CSNA Master


Coffee and Herbal Coffees By Jesse Vernon Trail Some insights and alternatives to a favourite habit





Hair Spray, Mousse, Wax and Gel By Michael Bloch What is in the products used by so many every day


5 Organic Beauty Tips for Restoring Your Natural Beauty By Shelly Lynn Nellis Simple changes can make a big difference

Blue Zone Philosophy By Dr Cory Holly Real world lessons in life and longevity

Prevent Winter from Weathering Your Skin
 Ten tips for stopping that “winter itch”




his issue of Vista has been, on a personal level, both troubling and motivating. It is good to be reminded on a regular basis of the importance of setting the right direction in our routine, being aware of our priorities and assessing our progress towards healthy and fulfilled living. With February being Heart Month, a number of articles focus on the importance of our hearts and circulatory systems, as well as the things we can do to strengthen this most critical muscle as a foundation for a long life… and a good one. Like many of us, I find these discussions a little troubling as they provide a timely reminder that I am not doing all I could to promote my own health and well-being. At the same time, the experts writing in this issue point clearly to the fact that some simple, practical changes in lifestyle can have long lasting, positive benefits. That is a source

of motivation and encouragement: to know that I needn’t engage in a total upheaval of my life, but can build on incremental changes to continuously improve my quality of life. I hope your thoughts are stimulated as well. And stimulating is exactly the right word for the challenge extended by David Suzuki in this issue’s Organic Planet section. In the midst of the cut and thrust of the debate over pipeline versus railroads for the transportation of oil, he questions whether we are even debating the right issue. Regardless of your position, his thought provoking analysis is well worth reading. We are on the downhill side of winter. The sunshine actually has some warmth in it bringing new hope for the renewal of the coming spring. So do your heart a favour. Get up. Get moving. And get started on the changes you want to make.






ebruary is heart health month and it is a time to focus on taking good care of this vital muscle. As I write this, my heart is hard at work: in a single day it beats at least 100,000 times and pumps from 2,500 to 5,000 gallons of blood through my blood vessels. Blood traverses a highway, transporting oxygen and nutrients and removing carbon dioxide and waste. We need this highway operating optimally for our heart to remain strong. Sometimes plaque can form and line our blood vessels. This hardening of the arteries causes decreased blood flow to the heart, which causes the heart to work harder, a condition known as coronary artery disease. Plaque forms when the lining of the artery is damaged and there are high levels of LDL cholesterol (and low levels of HDL cholesterol). A heart attack occurs when this lack of blood flow causes heart cells to die. A stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is interrupted, or when there is a rupture of blood vessels in the brain. Symptoms of heart disease can include: • Fatigue with physical exertion • Shortness of breath • Sleep disturbances • Weakness, dizziness • Indigestion • Anxiety • Tightness in the chest We need to care for our heart muscle through optimal nutrition, including supplementation when necessary. Poor nutrition, such as diets rich in sodium, cholesterol and excess animal fat, can contribute to the development of heart disease, as can a sedentary lifestyle, smoking, obesity and excessive alcohol intake. Genetics are also known to play a part, with some people being at increased risk of developing heart disease because of heredity. Risk of heart disease also increases with age. You can protect yourself, in the best way, through the following principles of good health: • Eat a diet rich in whole, unprocessed foods (plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean proteins) to ensure you are feeding your body the right nutrients for optimal performance, like the B vitamins (reach for green leafy vegetables to boost your B vitamins). • Limit animal protein, known to contain high levels of cholesterol and fats. • Avoid sugar and sweets in order to maintain more stable blood sugar levels. • Maintain a healthy weight (as measured by the Body Mass Index). Obesity, particularly fat carried around the middle, is a known risk factor for heart disease. • Quit smoking, which increases your risk of heart disease by 3 times. • Avoid excessive alcohol. This is too taxing for your liver. • Get active to improve heart function. • Drink plenty of water to better lubricate the cells of the body. • Manage stress, which puts your body at risk for many ailments including high blood pressure, a risk factor for heart disease.

• Limit Caffeine to 1 to 2 cups a day. Coffee is both acidic and dehydrating and studies show that people who drink large amounts of it (more than 4 cups a day) have increased risk of heart disease. It might also be helpful to increase fiber, enjoy a variety of antiinflammatory foods like onions and garlic, and season with cayenne pepper, known to stimulate blood flow. Soy products have also been found to reduce heart disease, though I recommend these in moderation for other reasons. I also suggest the following supplements for optimal heart health. Through supplements we can gain higher levels of important vitamins and minerals that we may not be able to get through food alone. Omega-3 Our bodies need omega-3 fatty acids for the normal growth of blood vessels and nerves. You can incorporate foods rich in omega-3 into your diet, such as salmon, flax seed and walnuts, but to reach optimal levels, look into supplementing with a good quality fish oil, or other omega-3 rich oil (such as flax oil). Hawthorne Berry The hawthorne berry can help prevent heart disease and can effectively help in the treatment of heart disease. It dilates the coronary arteries, decreases cholesterol, and strengthens the heart muscle contractions. Magnesium Magnesium is an important mineral that the body needs and is found in more than 300 different enzymes the body produces! Because it reduces the risk of heart attack, it is good to be sure you are not deficient in this mineral. Supplementation with additional magnesium can regulate heart rhythm. Resveratrol Red wine, consumed in moderation, has been shown to help prevent heart disease. Many people believe it is the naturally occurring presence of resveratrol in the red wine that has this nice effect. You can get the beneficial effects of resveratrol without the negative impact of alcohol through supplementation. You can maintain a healthy heart - this month and all year - by making important changes to your diet and lifestyle. Reduce your risk factors by following my suggestions, and talk to your Naturopathic Doctor about a supplement program to improve the overall functioning of the body’s most important muscle.

How will you spend your last 10 years? The average Canadian will spend their last ten years in sickness. Change your future now.






f longevity is your goal, protecting the health of your heart is a great place to start. When it comes to heart disease, you know risk factors like family history and being overweight do not work in your favor. The more factors you have, the greater your risk of heart disease is likely to be. Despite your level of risk, it pays to be aware of another group of factors that can cause a condition known as metabolic syndrome, a disease that can put you at even greater risk of suffering a heart attack, stroke or diabetes. You may have metabolic syndrome if you have three or more of the following risk factors: waistline obesity, high blood pressure, high triglycerides, an unfavorable cholesterol score (low HDL or elevated LDL), and high blood sugar levels or insulin resistance. Each of these factors alone increases your health risk; however, people with metabolic syndrome are twice as likely to suffer a heart attack or stroke, and more than three times as likely to develop heart disease compared to people without any factors. The hallmark factors of metabolic syndrome are interrelated. Obesity and a lack of activity often lead to insulin resistance. Insulin resistance contributes to unhealthy lipid, or fat, levels in the blood; examples are high triglycerides, high LDL (bad) cholesterol and low HDL (good) cholesterol. Unhealthy lipid levels allow for the development of plaque deposits in the arteries. Insulin resistance will also cause your body to produce more insulin, resulting in an impaired ability for your kidneys to process salt, thereby raising blood pressure. It is easy to see how these factors can take a toll on your health. The good news: there are dietary supplements that can help you safely address these risks, reducing your risk of heart problems. Omega-3s, vitamin D and cinnamon can be lifesavers in bringing the risk of metabolic syndrome back under control. Omega-3s from fish oils decrease fat deposits (lipogenesis), and increase fat burning (beta-oxidation). By storing less fat and burning more, coupled with an exercise routine, omega-3s can give you an edge that will result in weight loss. Omega-3s also help keep blood pressure levels within the normal range, partly by supporting the health of the blood vessels. They also support increased production of nitric oxide, which dilates blood vessels, allowing more efficient blood flow, and bringing blood pressure

to a normal healthy level. The omega-3s from fish oils are also great tools for maintaining healthier lipid levels. Omega-3s are so effective the American Heart Association recommends 2,000 to 4,000 mg combined DHA and EPA daily for those with elevated triglyceride levels. If you do not have elevated triglycerides, but want to get the protective benefit of omega-3s, be sure you are getting at least 1,000 mg combined DHA and EPA daily. Omega-3s support higher HDL levels, as well as increase the particle size of LDL, lessening the risk of injury to blood vessel walls. Now let’s consider vitamin D. A September 2012 study in the Journal of Nutrition reported individuals with lower vitamin D levels were more likely to have a greater waistline circumference, higher fasting blood sugar levels, higher fasting insulin levels, higher triglyceride levels and higher LDL cholesterol levels. The study also found, adequate levels of vitamin D in the blood meant healthier HDL levels in middleaged individuals. This is not the first study to show a relationship with vitamin D status and heart health. Edward Giovannucci, MD, ScD, Harvard School of Public Health and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, and colleagues, reviewed medical records and blood samples of 454 men (ages 40 to 75), who had non-fatal heart attacks or fatal heart disease. Men with a vitamin D deficiency (15 nanograms per milliliter of blood or less), had an increased risk for heart attack compared to those with a sufficient amount (having 30 nanograms per milliliter of blood or more) of vitamin D. Finally, cinnamon has emerged as a supplement that strongly supports a reduced risk of metabolic syndrome and may be cardio-protective. Cinnamon extract improves fasting blood glucose and hemoglobin A1C, short and long-term markers of blood sugar stability. Recent studies have found that even a half-teaspoon of cinnamon or 1000 to 3000 mg of Ceylon Cinnamon in capsule form can be effective in reducing levels of total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, and triglycerides. Heart disease can cast a big shadow over your life. It is important to take this message to heart. Start taking action against heart disease now. Most heart disease risk factors are preventable or, at least, controllable. Following a healthy eating plan, losing excess weight, and taking advantage of the heart-health promoting benefits of omega-3s, vitamin D and cinnamon, you will be way ahead of the game.

Take Care of Your Heart Carlson is passionate about heart health — that’s why our products lines have centered on heart healthy nutrients from the very beginning. In 1982, we began specializing in the finest Norwegian fish oils, which are rich in the important omega-3s, EPA & DHA. These key nutrients promote cardiovascular health as well as the maintenance of overall good health. Help support the health of your heart with Carlson Norwegian fish oils. Choose Quality. Choose Carlson.

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any people perceive the heart to be the most important organ in the body. Yet if you were to ask Canadians where they rank good circulation as a health priority, in many cases, it would not be very high. Our hearts beat 100,800 times per day for the sole purpose of circulating five litres of blood per minute through our bodies! Blood circulation delivers oxygen and nutrients to vital organs and tissue and also removes waste products from our bodies. If our hearts stop – we die. Are we Canadians taking this aspect of our cardiovascular health for granted? We know that a healthy heart and a strong system of blood vessels are the keys to good circulation. Many people have experienced obvious symptoms related to poor circulation, such as cold hands and feet. But even undetected moderately poor circulation can lead to organ degeneration, build-up of toxins, low energy, and impaired sexual function. An article in the August 2007 edition of Rheumatology discusses mounting evidence that vascular pathology plays a role in the initiation and/or progression of osteoarthritis. Robust circulation is considered very important in most parts of the world. Yet in North America, circulation as a health concern is largely under the radar, rarely discussed in the health media. Let’s look at some of the benefits of a healthy and vigorous circulatory system. Most obviously, the purpose of circulation is to provide oxygen and nutrients to vital organs and body tissues. The delivery of oxygen and nutrients is called perfusion, and it is critical to our bodily functions. Poorly perfused organs are literally starving, and over time will lose their functionality and even shrink in some cases. The reverse is also true, and vigorous circulation will result in noticeable health improvements. Higher energy levels, improved mental alertness, robust sexual performance, better digestion and even more regular bowel movements are among the many benefits.

So how do we improve circulation using natural methods? There are several medicinal plants that have been shown to be beneficial, and we discuss four effective ones here: Hawthorn is known to increase the ability of the heart muscle to contract, making the heart a more efficient pump. Circulation improves with continued use as more blood flows from the heart muscle into the arteries and capillaries. A side benefit is that Hawthorn helps the heart use less oxygen, meaning that it becomes easier to sustain exercise without becoming “winded”. Garlic has been used for medicinal purposes for more than 5000 years. Known to aid in maintaining overall cardiovascular health, garlic prevents high cholesterol and high blood pressure. It also lowers cholesterol and triglyceride levels, improves the ratio of good to bad cholesterol, and inhibits blood clotting. Garlic acts to improve circulation by regulating blood viscosity, or the thickness of the blood. Bilberry is widely known as a medicinal plant that will help the eyes (it is also sometimes referred to as “Eyebright”). It’s no coincidence that the eyes contain thousands of tiny blood vessels called capillaries. Bilberry is used to improve microcirculation by strengthening the capillaries such as those found in your eyes, kidneys, and other organs. Cayenne pepper has antiplatelet effects and is effective in treating excessive blood clotting, elevated lipid levels and poor circulation. Cayenne dilates the blood vessels and speeds up metabolism due to high amounts of capsaicin. This increases circulation and blood flow to all major organs.

Farid Ibrahim is President of Nutrition Plus Products Inc. He has had a variety of senior roles in the natural health products industry since 1994 and has broad experience in the areas of product development and quality assurance.

Kardovite. 1• 800 • 416 • 4474

A Tonic for Life.


“I began using a competing product in 2003 to help with my blood pressure. I switched to Kardovite six years later after hearing it recommended by a doctor on a radio show I listen to regularly. Uncorrected, my blood pressure systolic reading is 170. When I started on the competing product it dropped to 150, but after switching to Kardovite it dropped to an acceptable 130 and has stayed there ever since.”

Kardovite is approved by Health Canada as a Traditional Herbal Medicine used to support peripheral circulation and as a heart tonic.

Eleanor White, 72, Hamilton, Ontario “I started using Kardovite for my circulatory system. I feel more energised and every time I see the doctor my blood-work results are excellent. In the past I would get periodic chest pains lasting about a week which have gone away since I’ve started using Kardovite”

A natural tonic for a healthy heart Kardovite was developed by pharmacist Sam Ibrahim to help both the heart and blood vessels. Sam was educated as a pharmacist in Germany and had studied herbal medicine for 5 years as part of his training in the 1960’s. In Europe, good circulation is considered a health priority. In 1968, Sam and his wife took a chance and immigrated to Edmonton. Sam opened his own pharmacy and unlike any other pharmacy at the time, he carried herbal medicines from Germany. People who came to the pharmacy were very curious and had many questions regarding his formulas. He explained to them that the herbs were used for coughs, kidney and bladder infections, upset stomachs and other various ailments.

Clayton Dagneau, 46, Penticton, BC Slowly, Sam persuaded his customers to try alternative ways over allopathic medicine.

two years working with different combinations of herbal extracts at varied strengths.

Fast forward to 1999 and Sam had become a very well-known and respected Edmonton pharmacist recognized nationally for his herbal medicine expertise. That year, a man named Arlie Smith came into his pharmacy and asked Sam if he could develop a medicine for the Chelation Association of Alberta.

In 2001 he finally had a perfect formula, one that benefits the heart, and overall good health. He called it Kardovite, a highly sophisticated formula containing 6 measured herbal extracts; Hawthorn, Garlic, Cayenne, Bilberry, Valerian, and Milk Thistle. These herbs “synergistically” work together to reduce cardiac risk factors and improve circulation.

Some of Smith’s Chelation patients potentially required bypass operations and many of them had serious heart and circulation problems. Sam took the challenge of developing a product that would strengthen the heart and also improve circulation. He experimented for

Kardovite has proven to be very safe and has since been authorized by Health Canada both as a heart tonic and as a support to peripheral circulation. Today Sam is retired and lives in BC, and his son Farid continues his father’s work.

Benefits of Kardovite Heart Tonic: • Reduces risk factors associated with heart disease • Improves circulation and delivery of oxygen/nutrients to vital organs • Speeds the removal of toxins from the body • Strengthens the blood vessels and capillaries • Delivers higher energy, endurance, and athletic performance • Improves overall health and vitality






alcium (Ca+) supplementation in recent years has become the subject of numerous controversial debates. The primary concern is the buildup of calcium deposits in the joints, tissues, and arteries contributing to atherosclerosis, cardiovascular disease, and ultimately leading to myocardial infarctions (heart attacks). After a great deal of discussion, the re-evaluation of old studies and the results of newly completed studies, it appears that one of the main reasons for poor calcium absorption and its accumulation in the arteries, tissues and joints is the exclusion of adequate amounts of supportive nutrients that results in poor calcium absorption into the bones. The absorption process is a complex cycle of resorption (osteoclasts breaking down bone, releasing minerals from bone fluid to blood) and deposition (new bone formation) as bone itself undergoes continuous remodeling. Ninety-nine percent of calcium is found in the bones and teeth and the mineral is primarily hydroxyapatite crystals or calcium apatite. The balance between bone resorption and deposition is a lifelong cycle that changes with age, but is also profoundly affected by supportive vitamins and minerals. Some of the key players that influence calcium absorption and bone density are vitamin D, magnesium, boron and vitamin K2. • Vitamin D plays a key role in calcium absorption as it stimulates the expression of a number of proteins involved in transporting calcium from the lumen of the intestine across the epithelial cells and into the blood. Vitamin D is the principal regulator of calcium, increasing the absorption from the intestine and resorption into the bones. • Magnesium works synergistically with vitamin D and calcium by stimulating calcitonin, which helps to preserve bone structure by drawing calcium out of the blood and soft tissues back into the bones. • Boron supplementation has been shown in numerous studies to significantly reduce the urinary loss of calcium and magnesium, helping to prevent calcium loss and bone demineralization. Several other studies have indicated that boron helps in the absorption of calcium even in a vitamin D deficient environment. This suggests that boron plays a role in supporting optimal mineral balance while ensuring healthy calcium utilization. • Vitamin K2 is a fat soluble nutrient that works with vitamin D to direct calcium into the bones. It has been established that the portion of calcium that is not taken up by the bones accumulates in the muscle tissue and in the arteries (leading to atherosclerosis); however, it has never been completely clarified whether this is just supplemental calcium or if this also applies

to dietary calcium. The role of Vitamin K and the fact that heart disease is the leading cause of death, whether you take calcium supplements or not, suggests that both sources may very well be problematic. • Vitamin K2 ushers the accumulation of calcium from the soft tissue and arteries back into the bones and teeth. • Studies indicate that vitamins D and K together increase bone mineral density (BMD); however, vitamin K2 also has a significant ability to improve the quality and strength of the bone mass, reducing fracture risk. Calcium’s role in the human body does not stop at bone health. One percent of Ca+ found in the human body is located in the blood, muscle and intercellular fluids. This is where the diverse application of calcium is realized. Ca+ is required for vascular contraction and dilatation, muscle function, nerve transmission, intercellular signaling, and hormone secretion. Serum calcium is tightly regulated and rarely fluctuates. If it does, it is then sourced from wherever it can be found, which is generally from the bone itself. The University of Maryland Medical Centre has cited numerous conditions directly linked to Ca+ deficiencies: osteoporosis, hyperparathyroidism, premenstrual syndrome, high blood pressure, obesity, high cholesterol and rickets. They also cited studies that suggested that supplemental calcium may play a role in the prevention of strokes and suggested a possible correlation between high calcium consumption and a lower risk of colon cancer. When shopping for an effective calcium supplement, two key objectives should be considered: 1. The source or form of calcium is the first step in ensuring bioavailability. The most effective is microcrystalline hydroxyapatite (MCHA); look for MCHA that is sourced from BSE-Free Australian cattle. For the vegetarian, look for either a bisglycinate or a citrate form. Red marine algae is a food-based option, extremely effective and naturally rich in the supportive nutrients required for effective absorption. 2. A comprehensive formula is vital and the second objective when sourcing the best calcium options. Look for a combination of nutrients such as vitamins D, K, magnesium and boron. At the very least, ensure that your calcium formula contains vitamin D. There are numerous effective and affordable calcium formulas available and a visit to your local health food store will be the best source for providing quality options and a comprehensive selection of formulas.

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indful attention to the food we eat, the thoughts we hold, and the way we live our daily lives is the essence of healthy living. Changing our habits changes the direction of our lives. This is the first in a series of articles by natural living educator, Lucretia Schanfarber, to help guide you along your path to super health.


Cleanse & Cleanse Again The New Way of Internal Cleansing

Think about it. We are exposed to toxins daily! So it makes good sense to detoxify frequently and integrate the simple principles of cleansing into our daily diets and lives. Gently cleansing and re-cleansing the body of toxins is becoming a regular monthly practice for many people. This is the new way of cleansing. This is the tried and true way to a leaner, cleaner and healthier you.

Are Toxins Making You Fat?

Scientists say yes. The toxins found in pesticides, vehicle emissions, and certain plastics (to name just a few sources) lead to premature aging and greatly multiply our risk for serious diseases including cancer and diabetes. But that’s not all these toxins do. According to numerous studies, they also make us fat!

Obesogens Impair Metabolism

Scientists have named them “obesogens.” They are man-made, industrial chemical toxins that enter our bodies through the food chain, the environment, cosmetics and pharmaceutical drugs. With hormonelike activity, obesogens impair our metabolic set-points and disrupt normal appetite regulation, fat- burning, fat storage and blood sugar levels. Many researchers who study them think that obesogens are the hidden reason for the widespread occurrence of obesity, diabetes and metabolic syndrome.



Eliminate Toxins & Reduce Excess Body Fat (and vice versa!)


We all know when we start to accumulate too much fat. We can feel it. We can see it. Unfortunately, the weight of hundreds of accumulated chemical toxins we carry inside our bodies, called the “body burden” is not as easy to discern. And yet, we all carry this toxic load of pollutants within us – much of it stored in our body fat. That’s why the gradual reduction of excess body fat contributes mightily to the overall elimination of internal toxins. Likewise, the elimination of toxins normalizes metabolism and encourages healthy fat loss. It’s a symbiotic relationship.

Choose to Be Leaner & Cleaner

Our bodies are truly amazing. We have our own built-in detoxification and elimination system that includes our liver, our kidneys, our intestines, blood, lymph glands and even our skin. But this elimination system can and does become overburdened with a heavy toxic

load accumulated over time. We can help our internal detox system function optimally with the support of traditional cleansing herbs and a cleansing diet. By choosing to cleanse regularly we choose to be leaner and cleaner. We also choose to be more energetic, youthful and disease-resistant.

“When you make a choice, you change the future.” Deepak Chopra Lucretia Schanfarber is a writer and educator about natural living. She lives simply and gardens organically on Quadra Island with her husband, Lee and Airedale, Molly.


Heart disease and stroke are responsible for 1 in 3 Canadian deaths every year. With your support, we can fund more critical research, such as treating and preventing cardiac arrest in children.








Talks Nutrition, Fitness, and Living Vibrantly By Dan Tidsbury

Photography: Todd Duncan | Styling: Janet Devins | Hair and Makeup: Chantal Hubens for Judy Inc




full life calls on Lisa Petty to play a variety of roles: nutrition and wellness coach, health journalist, author, teacher, and mom (with attendant duties as family chauffeur). She shares with Vista the insights gained from active engagement with her life, her work, and the people around her.

On a public role that demands walking a fine line between being a recognized authority and falling prey to celebrity…

“From my perspective, I’m often like bring on the celebrity, because I’m not reaching enough people. But it is true that sometimes people’s integrity goes out the window when they become a celebrity. “My personal motto is ‘Walk the Talk’ and it guides every single decision that I make. If I am ever considering whether something is good for me and good for others, I just sit with it for a minute and ask, ‘Is this in harmony with everything that I believe in?’ If it isn’t, it is a very easy decision to make.”

On the times when there is pressure to make the other decision…

“Yes, there have been times and I’m not going to suggest that there haven’t. I’m a single mom of two kids and as a single mom, I wanted to be at home with them as much as possible. But earning an income is essential as well. I was often invited to do things for the money, which was obviously very enticing, but I would have had to be away from my children. With my kids being my highest priority, I had to say, ‘OK, it’s not the right time to take that road.’” “My target demographic is female and there are a lot of reasons for that. First of all, I understand women. Even though everyone has their own experience and their own history, I understand generally what women are going through. I have experienced motherhood, so I understand what a lot of women are going through. I am not a grandmother yet, so I still have a lot to learn but I certainly can appreciate wherever women are on their journey and that makes it much easier to identify with and work with them. “You can’t help everybody and you can’t be an expert in everything. Women have such an integral role in the family and in the community. If I can help women, I can help the whole family.”

On the differences in approach between men and women…

“Men are motivated by crisis, for the most part, to make healthier choices. The doctor has said, ‘Listen, you have got to drop 50 pounds or you’re going to have a heart attack.’ There is typically some kind of a crisis that motivates men to change.


On focusing her work on women…







On the failure of many people to come to terms with the growing body of nutritional knowledge…

“Nutrition is essentially a baby science, so we are learning things all the time. But I think sometimes people get overwhelmed with all of the information that is flooding the media. I try and help people to shut all of that out and get back to being inside their own bodies, listening to what their bodies are trying to tell them. “If every day at 3:00 you get a headache, your body is not calling out for a pain reliever. It is not as if you are aspirin deficient or something. Your body might be trying to tell you that you went to bed too late or you are overly stressed. You could be deficient in iron or haven’t had enough water, or it could just mean that you need a new chair. But it is not telling you that you need a pain reliever. “We have become a culture that tries to make symptoms go away but symptoms are the only way that our body has to talk to us to tell us that things aren’t going the way that our body wants them to. Our body wants to be vibrantly healthy. We make choices sometimes that don’t support that goal and when we make those choices, the body speaks up. We want to make the symptom go away and we never get around to addressing the underlying problem that is making us feel uncomfortable. “I am not suggesting never seeking medical help or that if you have a migraine, you shouldn’t take a pain pill. In that case, you definitely want to, but when it becomes a crutch, you are not serving your body. You are not serving your health and going back to the feel good part of being healthy. Even being in a bad mood is an indication that you are missing something. It might not be a nutrient that you are missing. It might be joy that you are missing or that your job is sucking

the life out of you. Whatever it is, it is about really getting back into your body and into understanding what is good for you.”

On a practical start to making changes…

“Being practical is one of my things and that is what the ‘Walk the Talk’ is all about. It is about taking these theories and making them practical and being able to put them into practice on a daily basis. To become aware of your body again is a matter of retraining. Wake up in the morning and instead of just jumping out of bed, do a body scan. How am I feeling? Or when you are sitting on the train, do you have to get lost in your smart phone? Can you look out the window and become more connected? “To be more specific in terms of nutrition and health, keeping a food journal is a brilliant way to become more mindful about the things you put in your body. So often I will say to people, ‘What did you have to eat today?’ and they have no idea. If you write down everything you eat for a week, every single thing, the simple act of writing down everything that you eat helps to reduce your food intake. Write it down or take a picture with that smart phone … but you don’t have to post it on social media… but take a picture and the end of the day you realize that all you ate today was carbs or all you ate today was junk food. It’s a matter of beginning a process that makes you aware of what you are doing. “We just had New Year’s and people made resolutions to give up sugar, but the next thing they know half a donut is missing and they are holding the other half in their hand. That’s because we get into this habitual living and we’re not – and I don’t want to make it sound like I am above this, because it happens to me all the time – conscious. If you write everything down, you won’t find that half donut in your hand. It is more about breaking habits and becoming aware than it is any judgement about the food. “It is about making the decision and then making choices that honour the resulting priorities. People need to get back to honouring what is good for them while still being of service to others. For example, one of my main tips for people to reach their health and beauty goal is to sleep. Make sure you get your 7 or 8 hours each night.”

On the future…

“Of course, I plan to continue with coaching, both group programs and on-on-one sessions. I am renewing my website and looking to support that through more work on TV. “I am also teaching at Niagra College. It is a great experience because I am teaching culinary students – going into food prep as a career and they are fascinated by what they are learning so that has been a lot of fun.” Keep up with Lisa at


“For women, often the motivating factor has to do with vanity. They want to look good for an upcoming reunion or for their daughter’s wedding or they want to be able to look good and feel good in their bathing suit. They don’t want to look older than they are. Vanity is a powerful motivator and rather than trying to fight that, I used it when I wrote my book Living Beauty, which is all about creating beauty through health. “I stress the importance of feeling good in terms of having enough energy and feeling good about your mood. There is a lot of pressure on women to do it all, have it all, and it adds a lot of stress. I think at a certain point women are like, ‘OK, looking good is important but Dang, I just want to feel good. I just want to feel like I used to feel.’ That is why the tag line on my book is ‘Feel great, look fabulous and live well! “There is nothing wrong with being the best version of yourself, becoming the best version of yourself. The trick is to love and accept yourself right now, who you are right now and understand that you are perfect right now but there is room for improvement.”




By Tracy Kaye Holly CSNA Master




his is a very hearty meal; you don’t need a knife or fork, just pick up and eat with your hands. Everyone loves them and they’re very filling too! Stuffed Potato Skins are great to take to a potluck party, or serve to guests for a big game night snack. This recipe is also great after a grueling workout or hike or run…this recipe is a special treat in our home, not a staple. You can add whatever you like inside the potato skin. The sky is the limit when thinking of a stuffing for this recipe. Try spinach and onions with goat feta mixed with the mashed potato or salmon and dill mixed with the mashed potato. This can also be a vegetarian dish; substitute roasted veggies and mashed potato for meat or fish or chicken/ turkey. You can make this dish ahead of time and just reheat, then add the topping when you’re ready to serve. There are about 5,000 potato varieties worldwide. Three thousand of them are found in the Andes alone, mainly in Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Chile, and Colombia. Russet Potatoes are excellent for baking, roasting and microwaving. Russets tend to break up during and after cooking, so they are not recommended for boiling, salads or dishes such as scalloped potatoes. This recipe can be cut in half or doubled. 6 large russet potatoes make 12 potato skin servings. 1 lb ground bison 1 can black beans ½ cup onions 1 tsp chili powder 1 tsp Mrs. Dash (original blend) ½ tsp crushed chilies (optional)

½ cup filtered water Sea salt and crushed pepper to taste (optional) Toppings: Guacamole Sour Cream or plain Greek yogurt Salsa Green onions chopped 1. Wash each russet potato thoroughly, prick with fork and bake until soft - approximately 45 minutes to one hour at 375 degrees. 2. Let cool. Cut potato in half, lengthwise. Scoop out potato leaving 1/8 inch of potato around the sides. 3. Set aside in a bowl the scooped out potato add water and whip with hand mixer until smooth. 4. In a large fry pan, sauté bison and onions together and add spices. When cooked stir in black beans. 5. Add bison mixture to mashed potato mixture; toss gently until well mixed. 6. Refill the potato skin with this mixture. Place stuffed potato skins on cookie sheet and reheat in the oven at low temperature until warmed. 7. Add salsa, and avocado (guacamole) and a dash of sour cream and top with fresh green onions. Mmmm! Serving suggestion: You can substitute ground turkey or chicken for ground bison. To make a richer mashed potato, use 1 Tablespoon of unsalted butter and ½ cup of cream instead of water.

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large proportion of our population thoroughly enjoys drinking coffee and for good reasons. When you visit the local coffee shop, there is seemingly a myriad of choices, each with its own distinctive flavour and aroma. Most of us savour the wonderful and often intense fragrance of freshly ground or brewed coffee. It seems to beckon and invite us to partake in the special ambience associated with having a cup. The stimulating effects of a fresh cup of coffee are pleasing as well as invigorating. What better to comfort and warm us on a damp, rainy night, or in the depths of a bitterly cold winter? But, coffee can be enjoyed anytime. The great flavour of coffee cannot be denied. In addition, there are many delightful accompaniments for our cup of coffee including milk, honey, sugar, and more. The only problem with most of these is that they add fat and calories to the diet. For a different flavour treat, try a dash of cinnamon in your cup. The major source of caffeine in our diet is coffee. Other sources include chocolate, colas and tea. It is the caffeine consumed in excess that has potential to cause us problems, as we will discuss. In addition to caffeine, coffee, surprisingly, contains nearly 400 other chemicals. These even include trace amounts of vitamins and minerals. Coffee is said to be a very good source of riboflavin. Decaffeinated espresso is even richer in nutrients, containing, in addition to riboflavin, niacin and magnesium. Coffee also has a high content of antioxidants. Although not a nutrient powerhouse, who can say that coffee has no nutritional value? The American Medical Association Council on Scientific Affairs states that “moderate tea or coffee drinking has no negative effect on health, as long as you live an otherwise healthy lifestyle.” Two to even four 8-ounce cups of coffee per day is considered an average or moderate amount of caffeine (about 250 to 300 mg of caffeine). Heavy caffeine intake is around 500 to 600 mg. (see chart below), and ten 8-ounce cups of coffee per day is considered an excessive consumption of coffee. Keep in mind that some people are more sensitive to the caffeine in coffee than others. We each respond differently to our coffee. Remember the old maxim “everything in moderation”? This may not apply to absolutely everything, but it certainly does apply to coffee consumption. Also, caffeine content varies widely depending on the type of coffee bean and the method of preparation used.


Caffeine Content of Various Coffees


Espresso – 1 ounce = 40 to 75mg caffeine Espresso, decaffeinated – 1 ounce = 0 to 15mg caffeine Generic brewed coffee – 8 ounces = 95 to 200mg caffeine (percolated is slightly less than drip) Generic decaffeinated brewed coffee – 8 ounces = 2 to 12mg caffeine Generic instant coffee – 8 ounces = 25 to 175mg caffeine Generic instant coffee, decaffeinated – 8 ounces = 2 to 12 mg caffeine

Knowing Caffeine

Let us familiarize ourselves with just how the caffeine in coffee can affect us, particularly when it is consumed beyond moderation. First of all, caffeine is a stimulant that stimulates all our body organs, especially increasing or exciting nervous and circulatory activity. It is absorbed and passes quickly into and excites the brain, which explains

why a cup of coffee helps to keep us awake when we’re drowsy. It can be, and is frequently used to relieve fatigue, invigorate, and increase mental alertness and energy. As much as many of us hate to admit it, caffeine is an addictive stimulant. An excess can cause anxiety, depression, a fast heart rate, restlessness, difficulty sleeping and even more than these. With heavy use, a strong tolerance will develop rapidly, possibly resulting in significant caffeine dependence, both physically and mentally. Then there are withdrawal symptoms from excess consumption of caffeine, which can include headaches, irritability, insomnia and more. Caffeine is also a diuretic (removes fluids from the body). For this reason, it does not accumulate in the bloodstream or store in the body. This causes a depletion of vitamins and minerals in the body. This also causes an excretion of calcium from the body and if large quantities are consumed, this may interfere with the body’s ability to retain and absorb calcium, which can decrease bone mass density, which can potentially lead to osteoporosis. Contrary to popular belief, the effects of alcohol will not be reduced by having a cup of coffee.

Is Decaffeinated Better?

You will note that even decaffeinated coffee usually still contains various amounts of caffeine, though much less than regular coffee. Some decaffeination processes may be potentially harmful (safety, environmental and other problems) because of the use of certain toxic chemical solvents used in the extraction of the caffeine. Thankfully the use of these chemicals for decaffeination of coffee is infrequent today. Without going into detail, these processes are now replaced by the following decaffeination methods: water extraction, carbon dioxide extraction/ reverse osmosis, and extraction by organic solvents. Even so, it is said that the decaffeination processes can still contain certain toxic chemicals, so it may well be preferable to switch to coffee substitutes that we will address here. Coffee substitutes, alternatives, mixtures and blends are available at health food stores, and certain ones at your local grocer. One additional point here is that both decaffeinated and regular coffee can promote acidity. This may impede proper digestion and the absorption of food and medicinal drugs. This is worth considering, particularly if large or excess quantities of coffee are consumed.

Coffee (or should I say caffeine) Alternatives

If it is the stimulant effect of the caffeine found in coffee that you are looking for, there are a few alternatives for you to consider. Sure, there is caffeine found in regular green and black tea, many soft drinks, and delicious, addictive chocolate, but the caffeine punch found in coffee cannot be beat, except perhaps by the following two herbal coffee alternatives. Regular black tea is made by fermenting the leaves of Camelia sinensis (the tea plant). Green tea is the unfermented form of black tea.

Yerba Mate, Ilex paraguariensis

The leaves of this South American holly species are commercially harvested for a stimulating, caffeine rich coffee alternative. It is frequently supplied at health food and grocery stores and is available as tea bags, loose leaf or bottled, in green or toasted with spices varieties. A typical cup of mate (as it is also known) contains around 40 to 80mg of caffeine.

Guayusa, Ilex guayusa

The leaves of this holly species from the Amazon are dried and brewed like tea for their stimulating effects. A typical cup of guayusa contains 90mg of caffeine, plus antioxidants and amino acids. It comes in loose leaf and bottled forms.

HERBAL COFFEE SUBSTITUTES Chicory, Cichorium intybus

Chicory root is perhaps the most often used caffeine-free coffee substitute. The best cultivar for this is ‘Magdeburg’, though the roots of all chicories can be used. If prepared and brewed properly, its flavour is similar to that of coffee. Very safe to use, it is also beneficial nutritionally and even medicinally. It is a good source of vitamins C and B6, plus potassium and manganese. Chicory root is not a stimulant like coffee, but is actually slightly sedative and diuretic. Harvest the long white roots in the fall of the year you planted the seeds. Wash, chop, dry and roast lightly and then grind for brewing. If you prefer a more bitter tasting coffee, roast the roots further, so as they are darker. Experiment with the degree of roasting to meet your favourite flavour.

Dandelion, Taraxacum officinale

Many of us consider the pretty yellow-flowered dandelion a weed, yet relatively few of us are aware of the abundant benefits that it has to offer. One of these benefits, that is quickly gaining popularity, is using its roots as a substitute for coffee or even adding them to regular coffee. Dandelion root is very safe, diuretic and even helps to detoxify the liver and gallbladder. The roots also contain vitamin C. Large plants that are 3 to 4 years old will have long taproots that are best for preparing dandelion coffee. Once these roots are harvested, they are then dried, chopped, roasted, ground and steeped in boiling water. The appearance and taste has some resemblance to coffee. The flavour has a little bitterness to it, but this is often dictated by how long it is brewed or the quantity used. The roots can be mixed with chicory root or added to grain based coffee alternatives. It is often available in powdered or granular forms at local health food shops, or why not prepare your own?

Coffee Alternative Products and Their Blends

You will note that most of the coffee alternatives listed here are derived from grains with items such as certain fruits and nuts added for additional flavours. Most are caffeine free, rich in fibre and antioxidants, and are available at health food stores and several are really quite tasty. Many have been developed as coffee substitutes to imitate the taste of coffee as closely as possible. Most of these blends are gaining in popularity as an alternative to coffee. Keep in mind that other healthy coffee alternatives can include herbal teas such as rooibos, chamomile, peppermint, rose hip and many more, plus other healthy drinks.


This is a popular caffeine free, low acid coffee alternative made from roasted barley, roasted carob, roasted chicory and may also contain figs, roasted almond, ramon seeds, dates and dandelion root, depending on the different flavours available, which include vanilla nut, hazelnut and java. It must be brewed like coffee in a coffee maker or an espresso machine. It is rich in potassium.


This is an instant powdered coffee substitute product of Poland that is caffeine free and made from roasted barley, rye, chicory roots and beet roots.


Another caffeine free instant type made from wheat bran, wheat, molasses and maltodextrin from corn. There are original and coffee flavoured versions. Has a fine aroma and flavour.


This is a popular caffeine free mix from Switzerland of roasted chicory, wheat, malted barley, figs and roasted acorn (depending on flavour), with a reasonably similar flavour to coffee. It comes in an instant powdered or granular form.


(See Nestle Caro) A caffeine free, instant beverage from Switzerland made from malted barley, chicory root and rye. It is also available in a granular form.


A caffeine free blend of roasted barley, roasted chicory root and roasted carob (to provide a hint of chocolate flavour) with the spices cinnamon, allspice and star anise, plus barley malt to add sweetness. This is a popular full bodied tea type alternative to coffee.


More of a green tea, with roasted brown rice with a mellow almost nutty flavour.


From Australia, this is a caffeine free powdered instant beverage made from roasted soybeans blended with other ingredients, including the natural sweetener stevia.

Caro (Nestle)

This is sold in North America as Pero.


A Polish drink made of rye, barley, chicory and sugar beet. Barley cup is similar.


A freeze dried, caffeine free and low acid grain drink made from roasted and malted barley, chicory root, figs, and beet root or other basically similar ingredients depending on the product. It comes in instant powdered or crystal forms with a rich flavour somewhat like coffee.

Ayurvedic roast

With a flavour similar to coffee, this is a caffeine free drink made from roasted barley, rye and chicory root. It includes the Indian Ayurvedic health herbs ashwaandha, shatavari and brahm. References available upon request.

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It is also a fairly good nutritional source of vitamins B and C, magnesium, potassium, zinc and antioxidants. Your brew can give a bitter taste if boiled, so prepare by steeping in hot water instead. In addition to caffeine, mate also contains theophylline, like tea, and theobromine, like chocolate, which help to give it a unique, rich and robust taste. It can be roasted as well, which imparts a flavour somewhat like dark chocolate.





lue Zones describe specific geographical regions on the planet where people live not only to ripe old ages, like an average of 95-105, but also retain their mental and functional capacity right up to the end. In other words, they experience both quantity and quality of life. Simply drawing circles on a map of the world in blue felt pen to designate regions of superior human longevity is how the Blue Zone concept originated. In The Blue Zones: Lessons for Living Longer from People Who’ve Lived the Longest, author Dan Buettner identifies five longevity hotspots and explains how and why residents of these specific areas of the world manage to live longer and better than most of us.


The five Blue Zone regions include: 1) Sardinia, Italy 2) Okinawa, Japan 3) Loma Linda, California 4) Nicoya peninsula, Costa Rica and 5) Icaria, Greece Supported by the National Geographic Society and joined by a team of investigative researchers, Dan Buettner visited each of these five regions to discover and record their habits, beliefs, customs, eating patterns, traditions and lifestyles. People who inhabit Blue Zones share 10 common lifestyle characteristics that contribute to their longevity and functional state of health. 1. Family Family is put ahead of other concerns. In the context of our present reality from my point of view, family consists of those who genuinely care about you and respect your individual sovereignty and right to exist for your own sake. Genomically speaking, every human is part of a large human community or family, but obviously not all humans treat each other with respect and kindness.







No Smoking Tobacco smoking is uncommon or plays an extremely minor role as an individual habit. It appears the psychological need to smoke is replaced with greater satisfaction in other areas of life. Plant-Based Diet Except for the Sardinian diet, the majority of food consumed is derived from plants including legumes, nuts and tubers. A diet high in natural whole plant life is high in antioxidants, fiber, and thousands of naturally occurring biochemicals that trigger gene expression associated with enhanced immune function. These same biochemicals are not present in devitalized, sterile factory food. Constant Moderate Physical Activity Moderate physical activity is an inseparable part of a healthy Blue Zone lifestyle. Walking relieves tension and anxiety and maintains a healthy posture. Barefoot walking on the sand, grass or dirt is best because it grounds us to the earth. When we connect to the earth directly in bare feet, we actually absorb electrons that neutralize free radicals in our cells. This is called earthing or grounding. Social Engagement People of all ages are socially active and integrated into their communities. They communicate well and feel free to speak their mind and express their true intentions and feelings. If you can’t express yourself, you tend to get bottled up and eventually release the pressure via negative emotions such as anger, frustration or resentment. Depression is redirected anger. No Prescription Drugs No NSAIDS, no statins and no antipsychotics. The fourth leading cause of death in America is taking prescribed drugs exactly as prescribed. It is much wiser to find a natural functional alternative or better still to prevent the need for any medication at all. Warm Temperate Climate Without exception, every Blue Zone exists in a warm, mild and temperate climate. When it’s warm outside it’s usually sunny and when the sun is shining there is

less depression, less inflammation and less need to be inside. Warm weather invites you outside into the fresh air. 8. Natural Biological Chronological Rhythm Work schedules are not synchronized with artificial clocks or watches. Blue Zoners rise with the sun and go to bed soon after the light fades. One of the best ways to free yourself of pain and inflammation is to throw your watch away and stop letting time control your life. Humans are not robots. 9. Rest & Sleep Lots of sleep, down time and relaxation. Many of us are sleep deprived. We stay up way too late and then get up early only because we have to. Without an alarm clock, we would be lost in sleep. Sleep deprivation is intimately linked with our willful acceptance and compliance with schedules that deny our individual capacity to adapt. Make sure your life pattern and schedule isn’t working against the grain of your biology, and remember, Nature always wins. Shift-work grinds everyone to pulp. 10. Independence Blue Zoners are independent, self-directed and feel responsible for their own actions and behavior. They live off their own land, make their own food from scratch and do almost everything that needs to be done by themselves for themselves. Freedom is what freedom does.

Although it’s certainly possible to seek out each of the Blue Zones yourself or find one similar to live in elsewhere in the world, it’s important to create your own Blue Zone in the here and now in your mind until you do. This means you have to make certain adjustments in your attitude and lifestyle, if you haven’t yet already, if you want to stay well and remain whole. People who move to the concrete jungle from Blue Zone areas continue to retain the health benefits of longevity and function because they continue to exemplify the same basic lifestyle. But if they don’t, they tend to hit the wall quickly. If they compromise their degree of physical activity and stop eating whole fresh food, they develop the same diseases as everyone else, but much faster. So where is your Blue Zone? Do you have such a place in your mind reserved for those times when you need to escape, contemplate life and rest from the madness of modern living? It’s all up to you to find and create such a place, and you can. Just do it!

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Educating Today... For a Better Tomorrow





Educating Today... For a Better Tomorrow




ebating the best way to do something we shouldn’t be doing in the first place is a sure way to end up in the wrong place. That’s what’s happening with the “rail versus pipeline” discussion. Some say recent rail accidents mean we should build more pipelines to transport fossil fuels. Others argue that leaks, high construction costs, opposition and red tape surrounding pipelines are arguments in favour of using trains. But the recent spate of rail accidents and pipeline leaks and spills doesn’t provide arguments for one or the other; instead, it indicates that rapidly increasing oil and gas development and shipping ever greater amounts, by any method, will mean more accidents, spills, environmental damage — even death. The answer is to step back from this reckless plunder and consider ways to reduce our fossil fuel use. If we were to slow down oil sands development, encourage conservation and invest in clean energy technology, we could save money, ecosystems and lives — and we’d still have valuable fossil fuel resources long into the future, perhaps until we’ve figured out ways to use them that aren’t so wasteful. We wouldn’t need to build more pipelines just to sell oil and gas as quickly as possible, mostly to foreign markets. We wouldn’t have to send so many unsafe rail tankers through wilderness areas and places people live. We may forgo some of the short-term jobs and economic opportunities the fossil fuel industry provides, but surely we can find better ways to keep people employed and the economy humming. Gambling, selling guns and drugs and encouraging people to smoke all create jobs and economic benefits, too — but we rightly try to limit those activities when the harms outweigh the benefits. Both transportation methods come with significant risks. Shipping by rail leads to more accidents and spills, but pipeline leaks usually involve much larger volumes. One of the reasons we’re seeing more train accidents involving fossil fuels is the incredible boom in moving these products by rail. According to the American Association of Railroads, train shipment of crude oil in the U.S. grew from 9,500 carloads in 2008 to 234,000 in 2012 — almost 25 times as many in only four years! That’s expected to rise to 400,000 this year. As with pipelines, risks are increased because many rail cars are

older and not built to standards that would reduce the chances of leaks and explosions when accidents occur. Some in the rail industry argue it would cost too much to replace all the tank cars as quickly as is needed to move the ever-increasing volumes of oil. We must improve rail safety and pipeline infrastructure for the oil and gas that we’ll continue to ship for the foreseeable future, but we must also find ways to transport less. The economic arguments for massive oil sands and liquefied natural gas development and expansion aren’t great to begin with — at least with the way our federal and provincial governments are going about it. Despite a boom in oil sands growth and production, “Alberta has run consecutive budget deficits since 2008 and since then has burned through $15 billion of its sustainability fund,” according to an article on the Tyee website. The Canadian Taxpayers Federation says Alberta’s debt is now $7 billion and growing by $11 million daily. As for jobs, a 2012 report by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives shows less than one per cent of Canadian workers are employed in extraction and production of oil, coal and natural gas. Pipelines and fossil fuel development are not great long-term job creators, and pale in comparison to employment generated by the renewable energy sector. Beyond the danger to the environment and human health, the worst risk from rapid expansion of oil sands, coal mines and gas fields and the infrastructure needed to transport the fuels is the carbon emissions from burning their products — regardless of whether that happens here, in China or elsewhere. Many climate scientists and energy experts, including the International Energy Agency, agree that to have any chance of avoiding catastrophic climate change, we must leave at least two-thirds of our remaining fossil fuels in the ground. The question isn’t about whether to use rail or pipelines. It’s about how to reduce our need for both. David Suzuki is a co-founder of the David Suzuki Foundation, and is an awardwinning scientist and broadcaster. Dr Suzuki has received a UNESCO prize for science, a United Nations Environment Program medal and the Order of Canada. Ian Hanington is the Communications Manager for the David Suzuki Foundation.


By David Suzuki with contributions from Ian Hanington, Senior Editor


Educating Today... For a Better Tomorrow




By Michael Bloch


Memories of my mother spraying her hair liberally with countless cans of hair spray over a number of years, followed by the mousses and gels that then became popular, stay with me. I vividly remember the little hand held shield she used that prevented the hair spray from getting in her eyes. I can still smell the throat-catching fragrances of the various sprays and potions she applied, that wafted out of the bathroom and throughout the house. I shudder to think how many hours she spent of her life in a hair products chemical fog. My mother died of kidney failure when she was just 51. The hair sprays and gels she used over the decades didn’t kill her, but they certainly didn’t help. My mother took great pride in presenting herself nicely, so cosmetics were a big part of her life until the disease that lurked in her since childhood took hold and then she started reacting to many synthetic chemicals. The fact that she had these strong reactions shows that these cosmetics were toxic – they hastened her demise. So what’s actually in this stuff and aside from the effects on humans, what is the impact on the environment? It not only sits on your skin and soaks into it, but once you shower, it winds up down the drain in into our waterways. For starters, most come in elaborate packaging, cans and plastic spray bottles. The plastics will be with us for a long time to come, breaking down into toxic chemicals that poison the earth and groundwater. Most of the plastics are made from crude oil, a product of the industry that has wreaked so much havoc on this planet. I’m not sure what the average person consumes in terms of hair sprays, gels and waxes a year, but it would be safe to say my mom added hundreds of plastic bottles and jars to landfill during her life. She absolutely adored nature; the consequences just really weren’t on our radar

in those days. As my mother neared the end of her life, these things became more apparent to her. As for the ingredients in these products, here’s the laundry list of chemicals in a few products I looked at. I haven’t used this sort of stuff since the amazing 80′s. Memories.. brrrr :).


Butane/Propane – human toxicant Octylacrylamide Acrylates – Banned in the EU; not sure why Butylaminoethyl – Banned in the EU; not sure why Cyclopentasiloxane - Persistent, bioaccumulative in wildlife. Animal studies show sense organ effects at moderate doses Propanol – animal studies show reproductive effects at moderate doses; possible carcinogen, skin irritant Fragrance – always unsettling as fragrances can be made of all sorts of toxic chemicals. They aren’t required to be specified in this country as they are “trade secrets”


PVP/PA Copolymer – petrochemical Polybutene – used as pesticide inert, with potential toxicological concerns Tribehenin – animal studies show broad systemic effects at high doses Phenoxyethanol - animal studies show sense organ effects, neurotoxin, carcinogen Diazolidinyl Urea – Known human immune system toxicant, irritant, neurotoxin in animals Butylcarbamate – animal studies show brain and nervous system effects at moderate doses Fragrance – see hair spray


Isobutane/Propane – human toxicant VP/PA Copolymer – petrochemical Panthenol – animal studies show broad systemic effects at high doses Hydroxylsolexl-3-cyclohexene Carboxaldehyde – animal studies show sense organ effects at moderate doses Butylphenyl Methylpropional – Possible human immune system toxicant. Animal studies show respiratory, reproductive brain and nervous system effects Alpha Isomethyl Ionone – Possible human immune system toxicant Polyquaternium-11 – - possible carcinogen, respiratory toxin Oleth-20 – animal studies show sense organ and skin effects at

low doses Fragrance – see hair spray As with other cosmetics, the number of ingredients and chemicals that are made from petrochemicals (originating from crude oil) is astounding. If you don’t see the chemicals above in your hair products, it doesn’t mean that nasties aren’t lurking in them. The above were single product samples and not all the ingredients from each as the printing on the labels was so small, my eyes were starting to bleed trying to read them. You don’t need any special knowledge or hours of research to track down what’s in your hair care products. Run them against a database such as the excellent application available at Skin Deep. If you decide that the risk to your health and the environment is too great, consider looking for earth friendly products based on vegetable rather than petrochemical ingredients. These can be found on the web using search engines by simply entering terms such as: earth friendly hair spray, hair spray natural ingredients, environmentally friendly hair gel, organic hair wax... and other related terms. Products based on plant ingredients are certainly out there, are reasonably priced these days and are better for you and our planet! Do be cautious though as some products may contain natural and organic ingredients, but also have other chemicals mixed in as well, yet still be marketed as “earth friendly”. It really pays to read the labels.

Michael Bloch publishes Green Living Tips, an online resource powered by renewable energy offering a wide variety of Earth friendly tips and environment related news to help consumers reduce costs, consumption and environmental impact.



Polyquaternium-11 – possible carcinogen, respiratory toxin Panthenol – animal studies show broad systemic effects at high doses Benzyl Nicotinate – Broad systemic toxicity in animals Zinc PCA – Persistent, bioaccumulative in wildlife Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate – May contain harmful impurities Phytic Acid – animal studies show brain and nervous system effects at moderate doses Dipropylene Glycol – animal studies show sense organ effects at moderate doses Polysorbate 20 – animal studies show reproductive effects at high doses Methylchloroisothiazolinone – human immune system toxicant Tetrasodium EDTA – animal studies show sense organ effects at low doses Methylparaben – possible carcinogen, neurotoxin, skin irritant Fragrance – see hair spray


Educating Today... For a Better Tomorrow





here are a lot of things that can dim your beautiful outer glow. Things like stress, unhealthy habits, and toxins can all play a part in hiding your natural beauty. But you can restore your healthy glow by following these five quick and easy ways to restore your natural beauty.

Tip #1: Clean up your diet.


What you eat doesn’t just affect how you feel on the inside. It can also affect how you look. If you regularly indulge in fatty or greasy foods, you’re more likely to develop acne and other skin problems. To keep your skin looking youthful, ditch the junk food binges and opt for healthy snacks instead. Not only will you have more energy, you’ll look and feel amazing.


Tip #2: Drink up.

Drinking water has health benefits. Not only will your organs perform better, but you’ll also feel more energized. Since many people mistake thirst for hunger, you’re likely to shed a few pounds by drinking water regularly. The standard advice is to drink eight cups of water a day. If you’re doing a strenuous workout or will be in the sun for several hours, you should drink even more than the recommended eight glasses daily.

Tip #3: Switch to organic skincare products.

Pamper your skin with organic skincare products. They’re better for

you because they don’t contain harsh chemicals and they can give your skin that youthful look you love. Plus, you’ll feel even better when you’ve ditched those chemicals.

Tip #4: Get your rest.

Not getting enough sleep has been linked to an increase in obesity, heart disease and other health risks. The lack of sleep will make you look (and feel) tired. You won’t perform your best at your job or other activities. Plus, you’ll be more likely to overeat. If you’re not getting eight hours a night, try adding an extra half an hour of sleep to your schedule each week. Do this for several weeks and you’ll notice an increase in your energy and stamina.

Tip #5: Ditch the harsh cleansers.

Cleansers can be tough on the skin. They often make it dry and cause cracks. Instead, opt for a light cleanser that has a cream base. This will help moisturize your skin and keep it looking (and feeling) young. It’s possible to get your natural glow back in just a few weeks by following these organic beauty tips. But don’t try to change all of your habits at once. Instead, pick one or two habits to focus on for a week. Then the next week, choose a new habit to implement in your routine. Do this for several weeks and you’ll feel better in no time at all.


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ll winter flakes are not made of snow. Cold weather, with its low relative humidity, wreaks havoc on our skin, making it dry and flaky. Skin dries out if it’s deprived of moisture and this dryness often aggravates itchiness, resulting in a condition commonly referred to as “winter itch.” During the winter the air is drier, and indoor heating further depletes your skin of moisture. Fortunately, there are several ways that you can replenish the water content of your skin. Dr. Robyn Gmyrek, a dermatologist and director of the Skin and Laser Center at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center, suggests the following ten tips to help turn your alligator skin into suede: 1. Moisturize daily. Petrolatum or cream-based moisturizers are far better than lotions for normal to dry skin. If you have sensitive skin, choose a moisturizer without fragrance or lanolin. Apply moisturizer directly to your wet skin after bathing to ensure that the moisturizer can help to trap surface moisture.

 2. Cleanse your skin, but don’t overdo it. Too much cleansing removes the skin’s natural moisturizers. It is enough to wash your face, hands, feet, and between the folds of your skin once a day. While you can rinse your trunk, arms and legs daily, it is not necessary to use soap or cleanser on these areas every day.

 3. Limit the use of hot water and soap. If you have “winter itch,” take short lukewarm showers or baths with a non-irritating, non-detergent-based cleanser. Immediately afterward, apply a thick cream or a petroleum-jelly-type moisturizer. Gently pat skin dry.

 4. Humidify. Dry air can pull the moisture from your skin. Room humidifiers can be very beneficial. However, be sure to clean the unit and change the water according to the manufacturer’s instructions to reduce mold and fungi.

 5. Protect yourself from the wind. Cover your face and use a petrolatum-based balm for your lips.


Avoid extreme cold. Cold temperatures can cause skin disorders or frostbite in some people. See a doctor immediately if you develop color changes in your hands or feet accompanied by pain or ulceration. If you develop extreme pain followed by loss of sensation in a finger or toe, you may have frostbite.

 7. Protect your skin from the sun. Remember that winter sun can also be dangerous to the skin. Even in the winter months, you should use a sunscreen with a sun-protection factor of 15 or greater if you will be outdoors for prolonged periods. Overexposure to sunlight can lead to premature aging of the skin and skin cancer. 8. Avoid winter tanning. Tanning beds and artificial sunlamps are always damaging to your skin and increase your risk of skin cancer. If you want to keep your summer glow, use self-tanners along with extra moisturizer as self-tanners can also dry out your skin.

 9. Take vitamin D supplements. During the summer months, your natural vitamin D production increases due to daily sun exposure, but when winter rolls around that exposure decreases. Taking vitamin supplements can ensure that you are getting the recommended amounts of vitamin D all year.

 10. See your dermatologist. If you have persistent dry skin, scaling, itching, skin growths that concern you or other rashes, see your dermatologist — not only in winter but throughout the year.

 For more information, patients may call (866) NYP-NEWS.

NewYorkPresbyterian Hospital
NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, based in New York City, is one of the nation’s largest and most comprehensive hospitals, with some 2,600 beds. One of the most comprehensive health care institutions in the world, the Hospital is committed to excellence in patient care, research, education and community service. For more information, visit

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Changing your mind

In our modern world, we live so deeply in a limited mindset and it is the source of so many people not being happy, healthy and living a life of ease. In this limited mindset we are consumed with irritation, worry, aggression, and fear – these are habitual unhelpful patterns of conditioned reactivity.

For thousands of years, mushrooms have been used to bring a change in perspective and a change in awareness, and have brought people closer to an understanding of their authentic selves. In this state, we know what is true and real, and happiness, wellness and ease become our norm.

Stress is the name we use for the condition that envelops all the symptoms of the limited mindset. Stress is energy draining and takes us away from our true inspired selves.

Changing the way your mind works is the first step to recovering your true personal power and ease. We call this Changing Your Mind. We invite you to take a small step in the direction of finding the greater you. For one week, try this simple program, and when you’re done, please share with us how you feel (

On some level we know that our natural state is one without stress, where we can endure the rapid pace of life without difficulty, where we experience joy and where our mind is clear. But most of us have lost the understanding and appreciation of the true holistic way and we live detached from nature and this greater way of being.

7 day change your mind program Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Breathe in a relaxed deep way as much as possible Spend 5 minutes alone in silence Wear a smile inside your mind Smile to everyone you meet Think of one thing that you feel grateful for today Try Purica Mushrooms

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Vista Issue 93 Feb 14 2014. Our Heart Health Issue Featuring: Heart Healthy Nutrients that Support Longevity. Interview with Nutrition and H...