Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Vitamins for Women: Syndromes For All the Wrong Reasons

Percent of Youth 4-17 ever diagnosed with Atte...

Have you noticed how we have slowly, innocuousnely, over the last decade, determined that every possible flaw or weakness, misbehavior or physical imperfection, whether real or perceived is a condition or syndrome?

It used to be that if you couldn't sit still for 40 minutes, you were thumped on the head by your dad or your grandma, and told to sit still and stop wiggling.  I don't know about you, but I took them seriously and sat still.

If you put on some extra pounds, your mom gently reminded you to not ask for another portion of  potatoes, or that second slice of bread.  Giggles around the table reinforced the message, and you were satisfied with what you had already eaten.

If you couldn't get up in the morning, you were told, "Hey, you play, you pay!" and with that pearl of advice you were expected to be getting up and at 'em.

If you opened the door, you were to shut it.  If you took something out, you were expected to put it back.  Everyone chipped in to clean house or stable or yard on the weekend.  Sunday was a family day....end of discussion.  

If you wanted to use the phone, you waited for the neighbors to get off the line...
You rode the bus to school, and as a high school student you were to set a good example and help the bus driver out.

You did not go out on week days, unless it was for Girl Scouts or 4-H and school work always came first. Had problems at school?  Well, you were always wrong and the teacher was always right.

You addressed all adults by their last name with the title of address being Mr or Mrs, Sir or Ma'am.....no first names unless there was an Aunt or Uncle in front of it. 

Today, we excuse bad behavior with labels like ADD, ADHD, EBD, XYZ....ask any kid, they will spiel out the alphabet of initials verifying and validating their inattention, poor manners, and lack of motivation.  They don't have excuses, creative or not, they just have letters that are carte blanche excuses for whatever has gone on.

Worse yet, there is a pill for every ailment and condition from lack of attention, to hyper activity, to tantrums, to boredom..... Let's not look into side effects or long term effects.....  

Then there are the conditions and syndromes....passive/aggressive, childhood obesity, oppositional defiant, inadequate eyelashes..... yup, you read that right...you can suffer from inadequate eyelash syndrome.  Don't tell me that the pharmaceutical companies aren't having a hay-day.   So many conditions, so little time.  

I'm not saying that the behaviors aren't real...unfortunately, they are.....but...

Maybe we need to start re-visiting personal accountability.  I'm sorry you have ADD, but you still need to sit still for 40 minutes.  I'm sorry you are ADHD, but you need to pay attention....you need to read the fine print...you need to understand your commitments to your life, your family, your job.  I'm sorry you are easily angered when things don't go your way, and you cannot figure out how to deal with what you have been dealt....but that is part of life and living....there are no guarantees that everything will go your way.

Oh and opps, you can't party every night like it's 1999 and expect to continue working.  Yes, you must do your homework, whether from school or the office, because.....just because.

It's time to decide to be responsible for what goes in your body, and on your body, in your head and out of your mouth.....you decide about that second slice of bread or that extra large, super-sized soda....you decide if the anti-bacterial soap that can cause cancer is really a better mechanism for health than a bar of soap and warm water.  You decide if a job that pays the bills and feeds your family is really so bad.

Yes, and you must even sit down, investigate, and determine if the possibility having longer, fuller eyelashes is worth the risk of red and itchy lids, trading your baby blues for brown eyes and developing permanent brown lids.  Hey wait a minute....isn't that what mascara was all about?

Be safe, take your vitamins for women, and be blessed, Kersten
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Sunday, May 16, 2010

Women Vitamins: Chasing the Artistic Rainbow


I’ve spent my life in the pursuit of art…..now that sounds weird, I’m sure.  But for as long as I can remember, I desired to create images that would stir the soul and be remembered by those who viewed them. 

I have been working as an art teacher and artist for over 20 years, and still have not achieved my goals.  Mostly, I failed miserably.  I never give up…I am the epitome of the eternal optimist…and I still hope for that epiphanal moment that defines my inner visions….

On the other hand, I am constantly surprised by people who, out of the blue, tell me they still have pieces of my art hanging in their offices or homes…..I cringe, wondering what I gave them, and how I would feel about that artistic endeavor, should I ever be faced with it again.

Still, here is something compelling, something therapeutic, and definitely persistent in this desire.  I believe that this is what truly defines the condition of being human.  Not opposable thumbs, not the ability to think and solve problems, not the use of tools, but rather the desire to create a statement of our existence and a journal of our perception of beauty.

Creation is a positive energy.  Some say there is no positive force without the alternative of negativity and destruction.  I don’t know about that, but what I do know is that I can’t create art within that negative influence.  I remember the first time I heard an adult speak about negative energies, and truthfully, I thought she had lost her mind, was a few fries short

Now, I totally understand….and have to chuckle sometimes when I tell my classes that negative energies aren’t welcome in my art room….I see that, “she must be crazy” look in some of their eyes…..but others come up to me later and tell me they totally agree….so maybe the world is changing….maybe we are finally awakening, taking responsibility and realizing that we create our world, we choose our environments, we are the artists of our lives.

Maybe, I haven’t been pursuing art, so much as trying to give voice to the artistic, beautiful, awareness of life and color and joy that surrounds us all; that vast, elusive rainbow of living in the awareness of now. 

Be healthy, be safe, take your vitamins for women, and be blessed,

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Sunday, May 9, 2010

Women Vitamins: Calcium + Multivitamins= Breast Health

Pink ribbonsImage by Aine D via Flickr
Calcium doesn't just build strong bones -- it may also fight  breast cancer. Breast Cancer is the most common form of cancer affecting women. It is estimated that 1 million women are diagnosed with this cancer every year.

So, it's interesting to note a study of 725 women, conducted by the  Ponce School of Medicine in Puerto Rico. This study indicates women taking a multivitamin tablet reduced the risk of tumors associated with breast cancer by about 30%, while multivitamins with calcium supplements reduced the risk by 40%.

Dr Manuel Bayona, professor of biostatistics/epidemiology, and Dr Jaime Matta, professor of pharmacology/physiology/toxicology attributed the calcium benefit to its effect on DNA repair capacity --the biological process by which cells patch up damaged DNA that may otherwise cause cancer. The report suggests women may boost their cellular defenses with dietary changes and long-term use of supplements.
"We believe that all women should be taking vitamins and supplements. Now we can tell if that regimen is really doing its work in reducing the risk." Dr. Bayona
Findings suggested that the interactions of different vitamins together might account for the beneficial effect, hence the endorsement of multivitamins.  
“The effect was seen with multivitamins, not with single vitamins,” said  Dr. Matta
 Although the study was small in size, and the multivitamin dosage not strictly monitored, scientists believe that calcium and supplementation of a variety of vitamins shows promise.  Since calcium’s protective effect came only from its influence on DNA repair, there are studies under way looking to utilize DNA repair capacity function as a marker for breast cancer risk, much like cholesterol is used as a marker for heart disease. 

So ladies, be healthy, be safe, take you Women Vitamins, and be blessed, Kersten

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Saturday, May 1, 2010

I am Brave

Went to Oakley outlet today...great stuff and great prices, so I went to their website and found this cool app for making a collage....just some fun.