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Better life without doctors – the power of nutrition

We often perceive that a medical doctor’s role is to save lives, and it is true that the public usually treats doctors as health consultants. Many consider this to be so true that they regard it as simple “common sense”. However, if you take the time (as I have), to read some of the literature available today on what doctors don’t know about nutrition and healthy lifestyles, it becomes readily apparent that we can only rely on ourselves to understand these issues and on how to take action to address them. This is what I consider to be common sense. Looking critically at the opinions of others, whether they are doctors or not, and developing our own body of knowledge and habits to ensure the best health possible for our own body – that is the only true goal. Finding the right approach and implementing reasonable steps can, in some cases, restore the deadly damage that has been caused by disease. Here are two examples:

Example 1, three years ago, L’s father had been suffering from symptoms identical to advanced Parkinson’s disease, such as problems with language, difficulty swallowing, eating or drinking, frequent cough. Also evident was muscle rigidity, stiff facial features, almost no eye blinking, uncontrolled salivation and body movements, beginning slowly and spreading, initially from the side of the fingers and gradually moving outward toward the upper and lower limbs and eventually the head. This results in a dependency which requires constant care and cleaning, a huge obligation that often necessarily involves a number of family members to discharge efficiently, if they are present and willing to do so. . . .. Until L met his current health teacher Q, L’s father’s health and his family’s fate has changed radically. L followed Q’s instruction regarding a set of psychological treatment methods and an effective nutritional regimen to combat his father’s condition and to treat the core symptoms, rather than to just “go through the motions” of pretending to do something useful while his father continued to decline. After all, what did his father have to lose at that late stage? Miraculously, after a period of three weeks, symptoms began to diminish, salivation stopped, clear thoughts returned, limbs regained flexibility, all of which made L very happy and excited about his father’s future. With the continued guidance and help of Q, L’s father completely returned to his former state of good health and independence, looking after his own needs without assistance, and traveling freely throughout the city. In his own words, L’s father had completely regained his former life and happiness. All of this was accomplished without doctors or medicine.

A healthy diet promotes healthy living.

In example 2, three groups of people are fed differing foods. The first group was fed a traditional variety including meat, eggs, vegetables , starches and so forth; the second group received “fast foods”, high in fat, salt, and sugar; the third group received a bare diet of grains and other foods which provided bulk but had no nutritional value. After a period time, the first group people were, not surprisingly, full of energy and vigour. The second group of people were lethargic and developed high blood pressure, cardiovascular problems and diabetes. The third group similarly developed conditions stemming from vitamin and mineral deficiencies, to the extent that some had to be hospitalized.

From the above two examples, the conclusion can be drawn that, in many cases, health is directly related to nutrition. Any imbalance of these will reduce the efficiency of one’s immune system which will, in turn, result in unhealthy symptoms or, in extreme cases, disease. The ingestion of nutritious foods, nutrients and supplementary nutrients can help to produce new cells, and to restore or improve the old ones, thereby repairing the damage caused by nutritional imbalance, unhealthy symptoms, disease, and the drugs which all too often are prescribed to treat them. In the final analysis, this restorative and preventative philosophy will eventually eliminate the need for intervention by doctors with drugs.

Even though I am over 50, I believe today, more than I ever did before, that an interest in the study, research and implementation of nutritional supplements is essential for a good life.

Is mineral makeup really good for you?

Amongst the vast selection of makeup and skincare products, it can be really easy for newbies to buy products based on labels that “sound good” without understanding what they truly mean. One such label is mineral makeup. People generally associate mineral makeup with the concepts of natural, safe, good for skin, light… etc. but what really is mineral makeup? And is mineral makeup really good for you?

What is mineral makeup?

Mineral makeup has been around since the 1970s as a movement away from chemicals and potentially harmful artificial ingredients found in regular makeup. Let’s be clear that the definition of mineral makeup can be quite vague. Any product with minerals in the ingredients can be advertised as mineral makeup. However, to provide the most benefits, true mineral makeup generally needs to:

Contain 100% naturally occurring minerals mined from the Earth

Free of dyes, artificial chemicals, preservatives, fragrances, filters…etc.

Mineral makeup should be simple, with the minerals grounded into fine powders.

Common minerals you will find in mineral makeup include:

  • iron oxides – provides the colour and shade
  • zinc oxides – protects your skin and provides SPF – found in sunscreens. Research also shows zinc oxides to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects [1].
  • titanium oxides – another ingredient used in sunscreens
  • talc / mica – helps to keep the product on and sometimes used as a filler. Talc absorbs oil and gives a more matte appearance while mica helps give more glow and radiance.

Talc is composed of hydrated magnesium silicate, many people know it as baby powder. Controversially, talc is reported to cause some lung diseases. However, talc associated diseases are often due to direct administration of talc into the body or exposure to talc powder in massive quantities (e.g. for mine workers, regular use of large amounts of baby powders, grinding of asbestos…etc.) In fact, there are very few cases of disease caused by inhalation of cosmetic talc. [2,3] If you are really concerned about talc or mica inhalation, find products marked talc and mica free.

Benefits and myths

Natural

The most advertised attribute of mineral makeup is natural. This is definitely true in terms that minerals are naturally existing compounds of nature. However, beware that:

  • mineral makeup ≠ 100% natural: as mentioned before, the definition of mineral makeup is pretty vague and some products will still contain additives or chemicals. Be sure to check the ingredients list.
  • mineral ≠ safe: there are synthetic minerals added to some products that could be potentially harmful to your skin. One notable example is bismuth oxychloride, added to products to provide a silky feel but is reported to cause irritation for the skin.
  • natural ≠ do not need to remove: it is not recommended to wear mineral makeup at night since they are still not skincare products

Perhaps the most natural part of mineral makeup is what it doesn’t contain – chemicals, dyes, and preservatives. Keeping those away from the face is more beneficial than what you put on your face.

Reduces acne and breakouts

If you read through the ingredient list of most mineral makeup products, you will see that none of the ingredients actually reduces or heals acne and breakouts. There may be some anti-inflammatory and sun protection effects but it’s not enough to actively improve your skin condition. However, if your breakouts are caused by chemicals in other products, switching to mineral makeup will definitely help reduce irritation and make sure your skin does not get worse.

Long lasting

Due to relatively fewer ingredients in mineral makeup compared to conventional products, these products are usually more long-lasting, both on the face and on the shelf. However, take this with a grain of salt as there are many great products that will offer long term coverage and not necessarily mineral based.

Versatile

This is something I still have to experiment with myself but mineral makeup can be very versatile. Thanks again to the simple mineral ingredients, you are able to mix with other products to customize the exact tone, consistency, and effect desired.

Mineral products

Some popular mineral makeup brands in recent years include GloMinerals, BareMinerals, Mineral Essence, Pur Cosmetics, Jopa Minerals, and Jane Iredale…etc. Popular products also exist with none-exclusive mineral brands such as the Laura Mercier Mineral Powder SPF 15 and the MAC Mineralize products.

Laura Mercier Mineral Powder – one of the most loved powders by beauty bloggers and makeup experts alike. Gives the face a smooth, radiant finish with 8 shades to choose from.

MAC Mineralize Eyeshadow – beautiful colours that are pigmented, creamy, and light.

GloMinerals Pressed Base – long lasting, evens out skin tones, diminishes pores. Talc free.

Personally, some mineral products I have tried are from Motives and had a good experience so far. Motives is a less well known brand but offers good quality products at more reasonable price ranges.

Motives Mineral Baked Eye Shadow Trio* – probably my favourite product so far that I have used everyday for the past 2 months (and still barely made a dent!). The three colours (I choose Intelligence) are good to use together or in duo combinations to create a warm day-time look or a fiercer effect for events. I find the shadow is really smooth, no fall-outs, and gives colour without being heavy so it is really friendly to newbies. Even with not perfectly blended lines it looks really natural and I can layer the shadow until I get the desired effect. The shadow also has a tiny shimmer that gives the look a beautiful glow.

Motives Mineral Lipstick* – my first mineral lipstick, in colour Citrus. The colour is a very beautiful red with a hint of orange, I like to lightly dab on the inner corner of my lips to give a very natural matte finish. This lipstick contains several oils (castor, jojoba, avocado) and waxes to help hydrate and protect the skin, however, because I have very very dry lips due to orthodontists I generally still need to use chapstick to help keep my lips from drying.

*FYI, we get a small benefit from the sale of this product. Love Wendy. Get more details here.

References

[1] Prasad, Ananda S. “Zinc Is An Antioxidant And Anti-Inflammatory Agent: Its Role In Human Health”. Frontiers in Nutrition 1 (2014): n. pag. Web.

[2] Frank, Czul and Lascano Jorge. “An Uncommon Hazard: Pulmonary Talcosis As A Result Of Recurrent Aspiration Of Baby Powder”. Respiratory Medicine CME 4.3 (2011): 109-111. Web.

[3] van Huisstede, A. et al. “Talcosis Due To Abundant Use Of Cosmetic Talcum Powder”. European Respiratory Review 19.116 (2010): 165-168. Web.

[4] “What’s Up With Mineral Makeup?”. WebMD. N.p., 2016. Web. 29 Dec. 2016.

[5] “What Is Mineral Makeup – Is It The Best Option For Me?”. Mineralissima.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 29 Dec. 2016.

[6] “Is Mineral Makeup Really Natural?”. HowStuffWorks. N.p., 2016. Web. 29 Dec. 2016.