Monday, December 29, 2008

Protests in Facebook Breastfeeding Photo ban

Talk about the power of the internet--the actual protest got no attention, but look at this.

n.b. when you're pregnant, apparently the breast's aureola can become huge...like small dinner plate size.

Online, the virtual "nurse-in" to protest Facebook's ban on breast-feeding photos has taken off, with hundreds hourly joining a group that crept toward 70,000 members Saturday evening.

The real-life, pavement-pounding protest drew fewer placards than photojournalists Saturday, with only a handful turning out to sing, chant and breast-feed in front of Facebook's downtown Palo Alto headquarters. But it had all the elements of a Palo Alto protest: A handful of peaceful pickets discreetly tucked away in a University Avenue plaza; placards reading "Hey Facebook, Breast-feeding is not Obscene,'' protesters chatting up the media; and indifferent passers-by. A member of the Raging Grannies, the Midpeninsula activists who stage various theatrical protests, showed up to proclaim in song that "our breasts aren't porn.''

It's hard to say whether either demonstration will move Facebook executives — who appeared to not be at work Saturday — to lift the site's prohibition of breasts displayed on members' profiles and albums. Facebook says the areola, the dark skin around the nipple, violates a policy on "obscene, pornographic or sexually explicit" material.

read more here.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Angel in the Hospital


Happy and Safe Holidays, however you celebrate it.

Dec. 23: NBC’s Ron Mott tells the story of one mother who believes an angel saved her daughter’s life...

read more here.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Six Green Hangover Remedies

If you're trying to get pregnant, imbibing lots of alcohol isn't going to be doing your body any favors, but it is the season to be merry. So if you do overdo it, try this green hangover tips from our friends at Treehugger:

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by Marissa Moss, Los Angeles, California on 12.22.08
1. Yoga
Athletic activity might sound a)exhausting and b)nauseating, but yoga is actually one of the quickest way to rid the toxins from your body. Try a routine of a couple of sun salutations followed by a series or moderate twists – literally “wring” the remaining alcohol from your body. Check out tips from Planet Green on how to make your yoga greener.

2. Wheatgrass

While a thick green juice might seem less than appetizing, take a shot of this curing beverage to balance all the not-so-curing ones you downed last night. Found at your local natural foods shop, wheatgrass’ chlorophyll content and detoxifying effects are a surefire cure.

3. Rescue Remedy

This product (which is made 100% naturally from spring water infused with wild flowers), which celebrities use for its calming effects (red carpet=nerve overload) is also known to help soothe a hungover system. A couple of drops in your water before bed and a pastille in the morning is the natural technique some swear by.

4. Coconut Water

Gatorade or other electrolyte-enhanced beverages are a common antidote. But since you’ve already been taxing the liver, why continue with the artificial colors and flavorings found in these sugary drinks? Young coconut water boasts electrolytes and more potassium than a banana, and is usually not packaged in polluting plastic.

5. Play in the Snow

A cold shower is a time honored remedy. But why waste the water? Lay your sad little head in the snow for the same effects. And make the snow look pretty while you are at it, with a nice imprint of your misbehaved body! If you must shower, read TH's tips on saving water.

6. Hair of the dog

If all else fails, have another cocktail. My favorite? A nice Dubonnet aperitif, which has just enough alcohol (but not too much) to take the edge off. I like to mix a little in a glass with organic orange juice, home squeezed from the farmer’s market for a little vitamin C.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

FDA and Misleading Advisories for Pregnant Women and Fish consumption

Confused about fish and pregnancy? Mercury? EFAs? The FDA says pregnant women SHOULD eat fish, EWG points out that mercury is a problem. Check this out from our friends at Environmental Working Grou:

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On Friday, December 12, the Environmental Working Group made public internal government documents disclosing the Food and Drug Administration's secret plans to reverse federal warnings that pregnant women and children limit their fish intake to avoid mercury, a neurotoxin especially dangerous to the fetus and infants. EWG obtained both the FDA plan, stamped "CLOSE HOLD," and memos by senior Environmental Protection Agency scientists attacking FDA's rationale. The Washington Post broke the story, and other national stories followed.

Reaction from Capitol Hill was swift and sharp. Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-VT., denounced the FDA: "Now, in the administration's 11th hour, they are quietly trying to water down advisories for women and children about the dangers of mercury in fish, disregarding sound science on this issue. Mercury is a potent neurotoxin capable of impairing childhood development at very low levels."

Read the Washington Post story here.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Antidepressants May Damage More Sex Lives

This certainly isn't going to help with the babymaking (or, the depression, ya'd think)...unless maybe they prescribe some viagra as well...From the Huffington Post:

Sexual "numbness." Lack of libido. Arousal that stalls.

Such sexual symptoms have long been known side effects of the popular Prozac class of antidepressants, but a growing body of research suggests that they are far more common than previously thought, perhaps affecting half or more of patients.

And a handful of recent medical and psychological journal articles document a small number of cases in which sexual problems remain even after a patient goes off the drugs.

"This is such an upsetting issue," said Aline Zoldbrod, a Lexington psychologist and sex therapist. "There are people for whom SSRIs are really life-saving, I think, but the idea that someone would have to choose between getting out of the darkness of depression and having a good sex life is horrible."

Keep reading...

Friday, December 19, 2008

Arkansas family welcomes 18th child, a girl

Obviously, being in her 40s has not slowed this woman's fertility. Curious to see how many more she'll have...

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ROGERS, Ark. – An Arkansas woman has given birth to her 18th child. Michelle Duggar delivered the baby girl by Caesarean section Thursday at Mercy Medical Center in Rogers. The baby, named Jordyn-Grace Makiya Duggar, weighed 7 pounds, 3 ounces and was 20 inches long.

"The ultimate Christmas gift from God," said Jim Bob Duggar, the father of the 18 children. "She's just absolutely beautiful, like her mom and her sisters."

The Duggars now have 10 sons and eight daughters.

Jim Bob Duggar said Michelle started having contractions Wednesday night. She needed the C-section, her third, because the baby was lying sideways. Jim Bob said both baby and mother were doing well Thursday night.

"We both would love to have more," he said.

The cable network TLC broadcasts a weekly show about the Duggars, called "17 Kids and Counting." Chris Finnegan of TLC — which handles public relations for the Duggar family — said the show's name would be updated to account for the latest addition to the family. He said TLC also will air a show Monday on the baby's delivery.

Jim Bob Duggar is 43, a year older than his wife. Their oldest child, Joshua, is 20.

The other Duggar children, in between Joshua and Jordyn-Grace, are Jana, 18; John-David, 18; Jill, 17; Jessa, 16; Jinger, 14; Joseph, 13; Josiah, 12; Joy-Anna, 11; Jeremiah, 9; Jedidiah, 9; Jason, 8; James, 7; Justin, 6; Jackson, 4; Johannah, 3; and Jennifer, 1.

"Our whole family is excited about Jordyn's addition to our family," Jim Bob Duggar said. "She's just perfect in every way."

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Glass Baby Bottles

Hey, kids, glass baby bottles! Keep plastic out of your life!

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November 13, 2008

New parents are becoming more concerned about the products that come into contact with their babies and also about the effect on the environment of disposable baby products. Glass baby bottles and cotton diapers are both free of plastics and don’t add to the overfilling of landfills.

By searching online and making a few phone calls, we found that Target carries cotton gauze-weave diapers and the plastic pants to cover them. Both Target and WalMart sell glass baby bottles. The glass bottles and diapers are available in-store as well as from the company Web sites. We were surprised to discover that Sears and Kmart sell neither.

For information about more eco-friendly baby products, read Better Basics for Bringing Up Baby.

— Heidi Hunt, assistant editor Mother Earth News

'Safety' in Overdrive: Pasteurizing Almonds

The nuts are definitely in charge of the nut-house.

As everyone knows, our food supply is dirty. Runoff from industrial farms often carry pathogenic bacteria into crops, as was the case of the organic spinach debacle. Well, there were a few cases of salmonells that were traced back to almonds (not organic) so what's the USDA's response? Spray liberally with pesticide. Nasty! So any almonds, even organic ones, sold at your local health food store are not raw and may be filled with chemicals. Our friends from Local Harvest say

The new protocols require all raw almonds sold in North America to be pasteurized, thereby killing off any wayward bacteria. How? By quick-steaming the nuts, or spraying them with propylene oxide (PPO), a chemical so nasty that it was banned by both the National Hot Rod and American Motorcycle Racing Associations, where it had been used as a fuel before being deemed too dangerous. PPO is also a carcinogen. For these and other reasons, most countries, including the EU, ban imported nuts treated with PPO. (The ABC is actively working to change that.) read more

So what's an eater to do? If you live in California, you can often buy nuts direct from the grower, and since this is an extra-retail transaction they don't have to pastuerize. Ask around. I buy ours by mail from a nice lady who I thought I was going to send a lot of business on the blog but she begged me not to, because she feels she is getting set up to be busted by the Feds--weird phone calls, etc. And given what happened to the people on that farm in Ohio, I am not sure she isn't in the wrong.

There are two other mail places where you can make your Last Stand to get unadulterated, pure, unpasteurized, uncooked, truly raw almonds.

Vital Choice and
Living Nuts (try their teriyaki flavored nuts!)


They ARE expensive, though. I think to guarantee the purity, both places buy their nuts from Europe--not the best carbon footprint, but it's not their fault!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

REVIEW: Ahnu Bridge sneakers for kids


Ahnu makes shoes with cool natural features like charred bamboo antibacterial, plus these shoes are designed to take a lot of wear. Our son loves these Ahnu Bridge shoes--easy on, elastic lace thingies, the big tab is helpful for kids with limited motor skills...they look cool and wear like iron. Nice to support an environmentally conscious company.

From the manufacturer:

  • Soft suede uppers and nubuck overlays offer support and structure with a touch of style
  • Shoes open up wide for easy entry/exit and secure with rip-and-stick straps
  • Polyester linings wick moisture away from feet and are soft against skin
  • Lightweight, shock-absorbent EVA midsoles cushion every step
  • 3/4-length nylon shanks under midsoles offer support
  • Nonmarking rubber outsoles deliver traction and feature a wide base for added stability without looking too clunky
The name Ahnu is derived from Celtic mythology, from the goddess of balance and well-being. The deity could accurately be described as an ancient version of “Mother Earth.” This choice of a namesake is both deliberate and appropriate, as Ahnu’s social and environmental commitment is incorporated in the foundation of every product that has been created and every business decision that has been made.

From the gold standard of factory certification (the footwear is manufactured in one of only 31 footwear factories in the world with SA8000 accreditation), to the use of certified post-consumer recycled fibers in the catalogs and packaging, Ahnu’s commitment is integrated through all areas of the brand.

The product goal is to achieve uncompromising performance by blending a modern aesthetic with the style, structure, and substance of the outdoor lifestyle. This goal has been realized through the emphasis on intuitive easy on/off technology and the proprietary QuiteLight™ construction, a system that enables exceptional strength-to-weight ratio and superior comfort.

Life should be balanced, responsible and fun. It’s the spirit that’s been put into each and every product, and the way that people will hopefully live every day.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Fertile women more open to corny chat-up lines

Hmm, that sounds like another good line...but Honey, I was ovulating!

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For men whose chat-up lines aren't working, it could simply be a case of bad timing. Psychologists have determined that women are most likely to give their phone number to a male stranger when they are likeliest to get pregnant.

Researchers recruited handsome young men to experimentally hit on women on a street corner to determine whether fertility affects receptivity to male advances.

Large amounts of research have shown that women are more responsive to masculine voices, faces, and odours when they're fertile, but no studies have probed the obvious outcome of such inclinations, says Nicolas Gu├ęguen, a psychologist at the University of South Brittany, France.

"These studies did not focus on women's behaviour. It's the first study to test the role of the menstrual cycle on courtship request, in a real social context and not in laboratory," he told New Scientist.


read more here.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Another Recession-proof Tips column

Planning on gift cards for finicky relatives and friends? Stores that are planning to close after
Christmas are still selling the cards through the holidays even though
the cards will be worthless January 1. There is no law preventing them from doing this. On the contrary, it is referred to as 'Bankruptcy Planning'). Below is a partial list of stores that you need to be
cautious about.


Circuit City (filed Chapter 11)
Ann Taylor- 117 stores nationwide closing
Lane Bryant, Fashion Bug ,and Catherine's to close 150 stores nationwide
Eddie Bauer to close stores 27 stores and more after January
Cache will close all stores
Talbots closing down specialty stores
J. Jill closing all stores (owned by Talbots)
Pacific Sun wear (also owned by Talbots)
GAP closing 85 stores
Footlocker closing 140 stores mo re to close after January
Wickes Furniture closing down
Levitz closing down remaining stores
Bombay closing remaining stores
Zales closing down 82 stores and 105 after January
Whitehall closing all stores
Piercing Pagoda closing all stores
Disney closing 98 stores and will close more after January.
Home Depot closing 15 stores 1 in NJ ( New Brunswick )
Macys to close 9 stores after January
Linens and Things closing all stores
Movie Galley Closing all stores
Pep Boys Closing 33 stores
Sprint/Nextel closing 133 stores
JC Penney closing a number of stores after January
Ethan Allen closing down 12 stores.
Wilson Leather closing down all stores
Sharper Image closing down all stor~s
K B Toys closing 356 stores
Loews to close down some stores
Dillard's to close some stores

Friday, December 12, 2008

Statins may cause eye problems

People are half jokingly saying we need to add statins to the water. I think not! If you're taking statins and experiencing any of these eye symptoms, get it checked out. If you're considering taking statins, consider cleaning up your diet, first:
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(NaturalNews) Want to lower cholesterol levels in hopes of preventing coronary heart disease and stroke? The odds are your doctor will probably prescribe a statin drug. In fact, a recent Forbes report found that from 11 million to 30 million Americans are already taking these drugs and many physicians argue another 25 million should be popping these pills daily. What's often lost in the hype about this class of drugs is the reality of the side effects – sometimes serious – associated with statins, including muscle pain, neurological disorders, rashes and liver problems.

Now comes word of yet another downside to these supposedly "magic bullets" for artery clogging cholesterol. A new study led by F.W. Fraunfelder, MD, of the Casey Eye Institute of Oregon Health and Science University, is the first to systematically report on eye disorders caused by statin use. The results are published in the December issue of Ophthalmology, the journal of the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Worsted Witch has a Wee Witch

Congrats to GreenFertility's friend and fellow green blogger, the fab Worsted Witch, who gave
birth to her own little witchbaby last week!

I can't wait to see what kind of green, eco, and recycley baby things she's going to come up with!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Christmas trees loaded with pesticides

We don't traditionally "do" Christmas trees at the house of Man Fertility and me. Mostly because I can't stomach the idea of killing a tree only to watch it decompose to needles in the dining room. I have this dorky organic rosemary bush that I sometimes adorn.

I had no idea, however, that Xmas trees can be LOADED with pesticides--blech. And the nasty nasty kind, because it's a non-food product. Now, if I ever get a tree, it will have to be organic. Not just for our personal indoor air quality, but to help preserve waterways and such.

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Christmas Trees and Pesticides

Most families don’t realize that they might be bringing more than holiday cheer into their homes this Christmas season. Families celebrating this holiday season with the time-honored tradition of a Christmas tree can choose to go green and avoid the toxic chemicals that are typically used to grow it.

Of the pesticides that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has registered for use on Christmas trees, most are linked to one or more adverse effects, including cancer, hormonal disruption, neurotoxicity, organ damage, reproductive/birth defects, asthma, environmental effects and more. Their use results in exposure to workers, wildlife, and waterways. Beyond Pesticides has compiled a list of 25 pesticides commonly used or recommended for use by state agricultural extension services, including: 2,4-D, bifenthrin, chlorpyrifos, diazinon, endosulfan, esfenvalerate, glyphosate, simazine and more.

read more here

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Why we have to fight for our freedom to choose our food suppliers

This story has been sent to me abut 800 times, and at first it seemed too unbelievable--SWAT teams raiding with their guns drawn when there are little kids around?--but the more I looked into it, the more I see that the family in question are friends and students of people I know. Also, we were at Oberlin College for a year and I know the students are very eco conscious and would bet they would move to try to bring grassfed meat to the college dining room (there is an ongoing effort to do this here at Brown). So read up and let's support this family!
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Swat Team conducts food raid in rural Ohio

December 4, 2008

See also Is This America? & The UN Plan for Food and Land





Home


On Monday, December 1, a SWAT team with semi-automatic rifles entered the private home of the Stowers family in LaGrange, Ohio, herded the family onto the couches in the living room, and kept guns trained on parents, children, infants and toddlers, from approximately 11 AM to 8 PM. The team was aggressive and belligerent. The children were quite traumatized. At some point, the “bad cop” SWAT team was relieved by another team, a “good cop” team that tried to befriend the family. The Stowers family has run a very large, well-known food cooperative called Manna Storehouse on the western side of the greater Cleveland area for many years.

There were agents from the Department of Agriculture present, one of them identified as Bill Lesho. The search warrant is reportedly supicious-looking. Agents began rifling through all of the family’s possessions, a task that lasted hours and resulted in a complete upheaval of every private area in the home. Many items were taken that were not listed on the search warrant. The family was not permitted a phone call, and they were not told what crime they were being charged with. They were not read their rights. Over ten thousand dollars worth of food was taken, including the family’s personal stock of food for the coming year. All of their computers, and all of their cell phones were taken, as well as phone and contact records. The food cooperative was virtually shut down. There was no rational explanation, nor justification, for this extreme violation of Constitutional rights.

Presumably Manna Storehouse might eventually be charged with running a retail establishment without a license. Why then the Gestapo-type interrogation for a 3rd degree misdemeanor charge? This incident has raised the ominous specter of a restrictive new era in State regulation and enforcement over the nation’s private food supply.

This same type of abusive search and seizure was reported by those innocents who fell victim to oppressive federal drug laws passed in the 1990s. The present circumstance raises the obvious question: is there some rabid new interpretation of an existing drug law that considers food a controlled substance worthy of a nasty SWAT operation? Or worse, is there a previously unrecognized provision(s) pertaining to food in the Homeland Security measures? Some have suggested that it was merely an out-of-control, hot-to-trot ODA agent, and, if so, this would be a best-case scenario. Anything else might spell the beginning of the end for the freedom to eat unregulated and unmonitored food.

One blogger familiar with the Ohio situation has reported that:

“Interestingly, I believe they [Manna Storehouse] said a month or so ago, an undercover ODA official came to their little store and claimed to have a sick father wanting to join the co-op. Both the owner and her daughter-in-law had a horrible feeling about the man, and decided not to allow him into the co-op and notified him by certified mail. He came back to the co-op demanding to be part of it. They refused and gave him names of other businesses and health food stores closer to his home. Not coincidentally, this man was there yesterday as part of the raid.”

The same blog also noted that the Ohio Department of Agriculture has been chastised by the courts in several previous instances for its aggression, including trying to entrap an Amish man in a raw milk “sale,” which backfired when it became known that the Amish believe in a literal interpretation of “give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away” (Matthew 5:42)

The issue appears to be the discovery of a bit of non-institutional beef in an Oberlin College food service freezer a year ago that was tracked down by a county sanitation official to Manna Storehouse. Oberlin College’s student food coop is widely known for its strident ideological stance about eating organic foods. It seems that the Oberlin student food cooperative had joined the Manna Storehouse food cooperative in order to buy organic foods in bulk from the national organic food distributor United, which services buying clubs across the nation. The sanitation official, James Boddy, evidently contacted the Ohio Department of Agriculture. After the first contact by state ODA officials, Manna Storehouse reportedly wrote them a letter requesting assistance and guidelines for complying with the law. This letter was never answered. Rather, the ODA agent tried several times to infiltrate the coop, as described above. When his attempts failed, the SWAT team showed up!

Food cooperatives and buying clubs have been an active part of the American landscape for over a generation. In the 1970s, with the rise of the organic food industry (a direct outgrowth of the hippie back-to-nature movement) food coops started up all over the country. These were groups of people who freely associated for the purpose of combining their buying power so that they could order organic food items in bulk and case lots. Anyone who was part of these coops in the early era will remember the messy breakdown of 35 pounds of peanut butter and 5 gallon drums of honey!

These buying clubs have persisted and flourished over the years due to their ability to purchase high quality organic foods at reduced prices in bulk quantities. Most cooperatives have participated greatly in the local agrarian economies, supporting neighborhood organic farmers with purchases of produce, eggs, chickens, etc. The groups also purchase food from a number of different local, regional and national distributors, many of them family-based businesses who truck the food themselves. Some of these food cooperatives have become large enough to set up mini-storefront operations where members can drop in and purchase items leftover from case lot sales. Manna Storehouse had established itself in such a manner, using a small enclosed breezeway attached to their home. It was a folksy place with old wooden floors where coop members stopped by to chat and snack on bags of organic corn chips.

The state of Ohio boasts the second largest Amish population in the country. Many of the Amish live on acreages where they raise their own food, not unlike Manna Storehouse, and sell off the extras to neighbors and church members. There is a sense of foreboding that this state crackdown on a longstanding, reputable food cooperative operation could adversely impact the peaceful agrarian way of life not only for the Amish, but homeschoolers and those families living off the land on rural acreages. It raises the disturbing possibility that it could become a crime to raise your own food, buy eggs from the farmer down the road, or butcher your own chickens for family and friends – bustling activities that routinely take place in backwater America.

The freedom to purchase food directly form the source is increasingly under attack. For those who have food allergies and chemical intolerances, or who are on special medical diets, this is becoming a serious health issue. Will Americans retain the right to purchase food that is uncontaminated by pesticides, herbicides, allergens, additives, dyes, preservatives, MSG, GMOs, radiation, etc.? The melamine scare from China underscores the increasingly inferior and suspect quality of modern processed institutional foods. One blog, commenting on the bizarre and troubling Manna Storehouse situation, observed that:

“No one is saying exactly why. At the same time the FDA says it it safe to eat the 40% of tainted beef found in Costco's and Sam's all over the nation. These farm raids are very common now. Every farmer needs to fully eqiped [sic] for the possibility of it happening to them. The Farmer To Consumer Legal Defense Fund was created just for this purpose. The USDA just released their plans to put a law into action that will put all small farmers out of business. Animals for the sale of meat or milk will only be allowed in commercial farms, even the organic ones.” December 3, 2008 7:09 PM

Monday, December 08, 2008

Upsides of the Economic Downturn: Monday Morning Picture

This is from "A Picture Is Worth a 1000 words" Dept. I was raised Christian but over the years have become more "inclusive"--Buddhist, Korean animism, hello Guan Yin female Buddha of mercy and fertility, etc., as it says on my Facebook page. Organized religion in general gives me the willies because so many atrocities are committed in its name. Anyway, this picture of SUV worship is both funny and sad. I love Mother Nature and would be glad to see some of these behemoths go the way of the dinosaur...and I suspect The Creator would, too.

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Fabrizio Costantini for The New York Times

Published: December 7, 200
PRAYING FOR A MIRACLE S.U.V.’s sat on the altar of Greater Grace Temple, a Pentecostal church in Detroit, as congregants prayed to save the auto industry

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Doctor Eats Only Organic Food for 3 years

This popular health columnist/doctor decided to try eating only organic for three years after hearing a dairy farmer talk about how his animals became less sick after switching to organic food.

I think this article also points out how difficult it is to find organic food--I know when I travel I won't eat rather than have to eat some kind of transfatty fast quasi-food. He gives some tips on how economically we can make organic food practical--and we must! We need to demand it, so the farmers will continue to produce it.

At the very least, for the last three years this guy has not eaten any melamine...

From the NYTimes via the Huffington Post:

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Fruits, vegetables and animals can be 100 percent organic. What about people?

In a fascinating experiment -- on himself -- Dr. Alan Greene, a pediatrician and author in Danville, Calif., decided to find out. For the last three years, Dr. Greene has eaten nothing but organic foods, whether he's cooking at home, dining out or snacking on the road.

He chose three years as a goal because that was the amount of time it took to have a breeding animal certified organic by the Department of Agriculture. While food growers comply with organic regulations every day, Dr. Greene wondered whether a person could meet the same standards.

It hasn't been easy.

"This isn't a way of eating I could recommend to anybody else because it's so far off the beaten food grid," said Dr. Greene, 49, the founder of a popular Web site about children's health, drgreene.com. "It was much more challenging than I thought it would be, and I thought it would be tough. There were definitely days where there was nothing I could find that was organic."

Keep reading to find out if it worked...

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Climate Change May Boost Exposures to Harmful Pollutants

from Newswise, the journalists' only news site:

Newswise — A review of studies projecting the impact of climate change on air quality, including effects on morbidity and mortality, indicates that adverse health effects will likely rise with changes in pollutant creation, transport, dispersion, and deposition. However, reducing greenhouse gas emissions could go far in mitigating adverse effects. These findings appear in the November 2008 issue of the peer-reviewed journal, Environmental Health Perspectives (EHP).

Worldwide, 800,000 deaths and 7.9 million disability-adjusted life-years lost from respiratory problems, lung disease, and cancer were attributed to urban air pollution in 2000, according to the World Health Organization.

Ground-level ozone is a known pulmonary irritant that affects the respiratory mucous membranes, other lung tissues, and respiratory function. Exposure to elevated concentrations of ozone is associated with increased hospital admissions for pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, allergic rhinitis, and other respiratory diseases, and with premature mortality.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Gestational Surrogacy vs. adoption

This article ran in the New York Times Magazine and had many, many comments. I found some of the pictures to be, I don't know, a little weird, sort of "what are they trying to convey with these?"

But this poor woman went through *11* cycles of IVF--ouch. Glad she has a baby. Her husband has 6 kids from previous wives, they didn't consider adoption, either. Lots of interesting moral, legal, environmental, ethical, cultural, gender issues raised by this.

Curious to hear your responses.

Use our stuff:

USERNAME: Greenfertility
PASSWORD: Greenfertility
ANSWER TO SECRET QUESTION: soylent green

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Her body, my baby. Adventures with a surrogate mom
By ALEX KUCZYNSKI
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/30/magazine/30Surrogate-t.html?8dpc

Friday, November 28, 2008

Popular Radio Host Has Drug Company Ties

Doctors say getting a wad of cash for putting their official credentials behind promoting a company's drug, sometimes even going so far as parroting what the pharma co tells them to say isn't unethical! In other countries, these kinds of practices are illegal...probably because bribery is illegal, too. The US is also the only industrialized country that allows the kooky, makes-no-sense direct-to-consumer ads for prescription pharmaceuticals. From the NY Times:
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Published: November 21, 2008
by Gardiner Harris

An influential psychiatrist who served as the host of public radio’s popular “The Infinite Mind” program earned at least $1.3 million between 2000 and 2007 giving marketing lectures for drug makers, income not mentioned on the program.

The psychiatrist and radio host, Dr. Frederick K. Goodwin, is the latest in a series of doctors and researchers whose ties to drug makers have been uncovered by Senator Charles E. Grassley, a Republican from Iowa. Dr. Goodwin, a former director of the National Institute of Mental Health, is the first media figure investigated.

Dr. Goodwin’s radio programs have often touched on subjects important to the commercial interests of the companies for which he consults. In a program broadcast on Sept. 20, 2005, Dr. Goodwin warned that children with bipolar disorder who are left untreated could suffer brain damage, a controversial view. “But as we’ll be hearing today,” Dr. Goodwin reassured his audience, “modern treatments — mood stabilizers in particular — have been proven both safe and effective in bipolar children.”

That very day, GlaxoSmithKline paid Dr. Goodwin $2,500 to give a promotional lecture for its mood stabilizer drug, Lamictal, at the Ritz Carlton Golf Resort in Naples, Fla. Indeed, Glaxo paid Dr. Goodwin more than $329,000 that year for promoting Lamictal, records given Congressional investigators show.

read more:

The New York Times

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving one and all. Some words from MAN FERTILITY in the L.A. Times.

Which Thanksgiving?

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Use of Antipsychotics in Children Is Criticized

Hello, peeps, the BLACK BOX warning is the warnigest of warnings, so what's the deal with showing kids with these BLACK BOX warning drugs that have PERMANENT side effects? Betas me. Around the autism community, everyone's on Risperdal, and I can tell when a new kid goes on it--he balloons to 200 pounds. There have been many, many suggestions that we need to get with the program and go for the drugs. I'm appalled.

We had some "problems" with our son at home, broken window (try explaining THAT to your friendly Pella repairman), but we prefer our son free range and raised without antibiotics or drugs. At least we know what he is and won't accidentally sentence him to a lifetime or Parkinsonian trembling just because we wanted to make life easier for US.

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From the New York Times:

Published: November 18, 2008

WASHINGTON — Powerful antipsychotic medicines are being used far too cavalierly in children, and federal drug regulators must do more to warn doctors of their substantial risks, a panel of federal drug experts said Tuesday.

More than 389,000 children and teenagers were treated last year with Risperdal, one of five popular medicines known as atypical antipsychotics. Of those patients, 240,000 were 12 or younger, according to data presented to the committee. In many cases, the drug was prescribed to treat attention deficit disorders.

But Risperdal is not approved for attention deficit problems, and its risks — which include substantial weight gain, metabolic disorders and muscular tics that can be permanent — are too profound to justify its use in treating such disorders, panel members said.

read more here.

Use our stuff:
USERNAME: Greenfertility
PASSWORD: Greenfertility

answer to secret question: soylent green

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Breast Cancer Rates Soar after Mammograms and Some Cancers may Heal Naturally

Wow, this is interesting. As longtime readers probably know, I myself don't get mammograms because of statistics showing that death rates from breast cancer are about the same for people who do or DON'T get mammograms, so I decided to skip the pain and inconvenience. AND speculative data from European countries (are we even looking, here, in the US?) suggested that repeat mammography might be correlated with breast cancer--it IS radiation. Now, it seems, the date is more than speculative.

And again, I am not offering any health advice or recommendations, only telling what the news is and describing my own choices and experience.

From NaturalNews:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

NaturalNews) A report just published in the Journal of the American Medical Association's Archives of Internal Medicine (Arch Intern Med. 2008;168[21]:2302-2303) reaches a startling conclusion. Breast cancer rates increased significantly in four Norwegian counties after women there began getting mammograms every two years. In fact, according to background information in the study, the start of screening mammography programs throughout Europe has been associated with increased incidence of breast cancer.

This raises some obvious and worrisome questions: Did the x-rays and/or the sometimes torturous compression of breasts during mammography actually spur cancer to develop? Or does this just look like an increase in the disease rate because mammography is simply identifying more cases of breast cancer?

read more here.
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Old posts: Mammograms can have negative long-term results

Change in official guidelines on Mammography and Women aged 40-49

Monday, November 24, 2008

Exercise AND Sleep go together for cancer reduction

So don't think you can party all night and get up with Red Bull in the a.m....there is not such thing as a successful burning of both ends of the fertility/health candle...

From Newswise, the journalists'-only site:

----------------------------------------------------

Newswise — Exercise is good for more than just your waistline. A recent study presented at the American Association for Cancer Research’s Seventh Annual International Conference on Frontiers in Cancer Prevention Research suggests that regular physical activity can lower a woman’s overall risk of cancer – but only if she gets a good night’s sleep. Otherwise, lack of sleep can undermine exercise’s cancer prevention benefits.

“Greater participation in physical activity has consistently been associated with reduced risk of cancer incidence at several sites, including breast and colon cancers,” said James McClain, Ph.D., cancer prevention fellow at the National Cancer Institute and lead author of the study. “Short duration sleep appears to have opposing effects of physical activity on several key hormonal and metabolic parameters, which is why we looked at how it affected the exercise/cancer risk relationship.”

Even though the exact mechanism of how exercise reduces cancer risk isn’t known, researchers believe that physical activity’s effects on factors including hormone levels, immune function, and body weight may play an important role. The study examined the link between exercise and cancer risk, paying special attention to whether or not getting adequate sleep further affected a women’s cancer risk.

Researchers assessed the association between physical activity energy expenditure (PAEE), sleep duration and incidence of overall, breast, and colon cancer in 5,968 women at least 18 years old with no previous cancer diagnoses. The women completed an initial survey in 1998 and were then tracked through the Washington County Cancer Registry and Maryland State Cancer Registry for nearly 10 years.

The results pointed to a sleep-exercise link. “Current findings suggest that sleep duration modifies the relationship between physical activity and all-site cancer risk among young and middle-aged women,” he said.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Our Domestic Melamine Problem

We're had several posts here about the melamine problem in China, and now from this editorial in the NYtimes about our domestic melamine problem, I can't imagine a BETTER argument for eating local and organic. I have been reading that melamine is a "byproduct" of fertilizer production, but I didn't realize it's IN fertilizer. And vegans take note of the bad news about wheat gluten, people trying to conceive look up old posts about why removing WHEAT and GLUTEN may help your fertility especially if you have thyroid problems.
-----------------------------

Chemical plants throughout the United States produce millions of pounds of melamine a year...

Given the pervasiveness of melamine, it’s always possible that trace elements will end up in food. The F.D.A. thus sets the legal limit for melamine in food at 2.5 parts per million. ...

But these figures obscure more than they reveal. First, while adults eat about one-fortieth of their weight every day, toddlers consume closer to one-tenth. Although scientists haven’t measured the differential impact of melamine on infants versus adults, it’s likely that this intensified ratio would at least double (if not quadruple) the impact of legal levels of melamine on toddlers.

This doubled exposure might not land a child in the hospital, but it could certainly contribute to the long-term kidney and liver problems that we know are caused by chronic exposure to melamine.

On a more concrete note, melamine not only has widespread industrial applications, but is also used to buttress the foundation of American agriculture.

Fertilizer companies commonly add melamine to their products because it helps control the rate at which nitrogen seeps into soil, thereby allowing the farmer to get more nutrient bang for the fertilizer buck. But the government doesn’t regulate how much melamine is applied to the soil. This melamine accumulates as salt crystals in the ground, tainting the soil through which American food sucks up American nutrients.


read more here. (Username/PW: GreenFertility)


Or just eat organic!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Get a leg up on your Holiday Shopping

We loves us some Eco-Me here at GreenFertility--DIY cleaning stuff with stuff you have at home, leave out the chemicals.

It's already an eco- econo-choice, but here you can get some more $ off and buy kits for friends and family.

Eco-Me.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Earthcalm EMF Protector/MRI

As you know, if you've been a steady reader for my blog, that I will review any product that seems interesting, un-harmful, etc., and I will report it as such even at the expense of my dignity. Thus, I reported how I surprisingly liked the EarthCalm EMF protector, even though it seemed a little tinfoil hat-ish, and in our house we practice EMF hygiene (more on that, later). But the earth does have a magnetic field (see previous post on sleep), and, as with global warming, we may be messing with it with all our powerful techno stuff. Keep in mind, too, that the earliest times in pregnancy is a very delicate process, and we should respect that process and keep as many weird things out of it so life can do its thing.

So anyway, I do get tons of mail on this subject, mostly questions on EMF, but here is one from a fellow EarthCalm fan, who graciously allowed me to reprint her email:

I am an earthcalm user and read your blog at Green Fertility. I just wanted you to know that I had an MRI several years ago, and it wiped me (and my immune system) out

for close to 6 months. So you are absolutely right about ‘cells being rearranged’ (or whatever it does). I didn’t have my earthcalm products when I had the MRI. I am also a Reiki channel, and do Chinese Energy work, so am sensitive to energy also. I will never have another MRI – it was awful.

I got the earthcalm products because I coughed for years, and no one could figure out why – none of the doctors, alternative people, etc. My friend brought over a Gauss

Meter and we discovered that the area where I live was extremely high in EMF, due to cell phone towers, high tension towers, etc. The day I got the earthcalm home protector, I plugged it in, and it was like someone had turned a faucet off – I stopped coughing immediately, and my lungs have been healing. So know that these products really make a difference. I don’t know where I would be now without them.

I wasn’t sure how to put a message on your blog, so I found your email and used that.

In Peace, Judith Weiss

Monday, November 17, 2008

Sleep positions affect REM sleep?

From Reuters:

This is kind of interesting, my Korean uncle, who's very much the empiricist, always insisted that we should live in houses that face north, for prosperity. And our bed is likewise on the north-south axis. MAN FERTILITY and I always complain when we have to travel that we never sleep well....hm, and then it's always lights-out the minute we get back into our own bed.

From Reuters:

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Grazing cattle and sleeping deer tend to align their bodies along the North-South axis of the Earth's magnetic field, European researchers said on Monday, giving new meaning to the phrase animal magnetism....

They found that whether grazing or resting, these animals face either magnetic North or South. And since the direction of the wind and sun varied widely where the images were taken, the researchers believe the Earth's magnetic field to be the polarizing factor...

Some studies suggest humans who sleep in an East-West position have far shorter rapid eye movement or REM sleep cycles, in which dreams occur, compared with North-South sleepers who got more REM sleep.

read more here.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Doie Designs Coupon!

Sara Kirsner, the designer/creator of the luscious bamboo designs at Doie Designs is offering GreenFertility readers a nifty coupon:

eco08 for 25% off of Fall '08 and everything else is already 60% off!!

Sustainable bamboo, fashion forward, and many of these designs would work great as early maternity wear. Check it out--this Larkspur silk/bamboo top would work great for work or play, and it's deeply discounted.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Winter Means Watch out for Carbon Monoxide

I am so paranoid about this sneaky gas that killed tennis star Vitas Gerulaitis that I brought a CO detector with me that year I lived in Korea. And of course when it went off, I had no idea how to explain what "carbon monoxide" was to my landlord. But I WAS able to get him to check the heating and slept with my windows open for a few nightt. Any kind of heating can produce this deadly gas.

p.s. symptoms are also similar to the flu. You may not need a flu shot, but a FLUE shot.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Poison Control Centers Warn of Cold Weather Dangers

from Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

(Alexandria, VA): The onset of cold weather greatly increases the chances for exposure to poisonous carbon monoxide (CO) gas as consumers increase their use of appliances such as space heaters and portable generators, warns the American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC). Every year, hundreds of deaths and many thousands of illnesses result from exposure to CO.

Among the numerous potential sources of CO are furnaces, water heaters, stoves, ovens, space heaters, wood and gas fireplaces, wood-burning stoves, portable generators and automobile engines.

“All fuel powered engines produce CO gas,” explains AAPCC Board Member Edward P. Krenzelok, PharmD, director of the Pittsburgh Poison Center. “Although such devices are safe if used correctly, a malfunction or improper ventilation can make these common household appliances deadly.”

Carbon monoxide gas is lethal, even though it is colorless, odorless, and tasteless. It may kill quickly or slowly, and the warning signs specific to carbon monoxide are also common to the flu and food poisoning. Even when it is not fatal, carbon monoxide can cause permanent damage to the brain and other parts of the nervous system. Symptoms include aches, dizziness, headache, confusion, and other symptoms also found with flu and typical cold-weather viruses.

AAPCC suggest taking some simple steps to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning:

· Have all of your combustion appliances and especially your furnace inspected and adjusted before every heating season.

· Have your chimney, fireplace, and wood stoves, and flues inspected before every heating season.

· Have chimneys and flues repaired as needed.

· Do not use your oven for heating your home.

· Do not leave your car’s engine running in an enclosed or attached garage, even if the door is open.

· Install a carbon monoxide alarm outside of every sleeping area in your home.

Poison control centers around the country are prepared to respond with information and treatment advice about CO poisoning. To reach a local poison center call 1-800-222-1222. More information about CO poisoning may be found on the AAPCC’s Website at http://www.aapcc.org.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Astragalus Root Can Prevent Telomere Shortening

One of the recommendations from yesterday's video is taking antioxidants, especially for older women, to help offset DNA damage from the aging process (GreenFertility likes whole foods-based Super Nutrition's Antioxidant Power).
So this story about astragalus root came off the wire yesterday, about how some chemical that they are feverishly trying to extract from this common Asian medicinal herb helps shorten telomeres. Telomeres basically are an indication of the age of a chromosome, they shorten as the chromosome ages. Interestingly, in a recent study they did on how STRESS ages us, they used parents of autistic children as their stress-bucket test subjects, which seemed to me to be pretty appropriate (and yes, we do have telemores that shorten at a faster rate).

I just think it's funny (sad?) that there's this sudden rush to extract, synthesize, and probably to genetically engineer this (and of course patent for $$$) when people in Asia have been taking this for thousands of years, and yes, my elders are always saying, "Eat this! You'll live longer!" I always feel using the unprocessed plant part is better And yes, it's good for fertility by virtue of it being an adaptogen, like ginseng.

Here's the post I did at my "old" blogging job at Adoption.com : http://blogs.fertilitycommunity.com/weblogs/astragalus-whang-ki-huang-qi

How to add some whang-ki to your life? Easy! Click for the FertilityBitch's chicken soup recipe.

A good source to buy some organic astralagus/whang-ki: Mountain Rose Herbs.

From Newswise, the journalists'-only site:


------------------------------------------

Newswise — Like other kinds of cells, immune cells lose the ability to divide as they age because a part of their chromosomes known as a telomere becomes progressively shorter with cell division. As a result, the cell changes in many ways, and its disease fighting ability is compromised.

But a new UCLA AIDS Institute study has found that a chemical from the Astragalus root, frequently used in Chinese herbal therapy, can prevent or slow this progressive telomere shortening, which could make it a key weapon in the fight against HIV.

The study, to be published in the Nov. 15 print edition of the Journal of Immunology, is available online at www.jimmunol.org/cgi/content/full/181/10/7400.

A telomere is a region at the end of every cell chromosome that contains repeated DNA sequences but no genes; telomeres act to protect the ends of the chromosomes and prevent them from fusing together — rather like the plastic tips that keep shoelaces from unraveling. Each time a cell divides, the telomeres get shorter, eventually causing the cell to reach a stage called replicative senescence, when it can no longer divide. This seems to indicate that the cell has reached an end stage, but, in fact, the cell has changed into one with new genetic and functional characteristics.

Generally, the telomeres in cells are sufficiently long that they can divide many times without a problem. Moreover, when fighting infections, T-cells can turn on an enzyme called telomerase, which can prevent the telomeres from shortening....

Previous studies have shown that injecting the telomerase gene into T-cells can keep the telomeres from shortening, enabling them to maintain their HIV-fighting function for much longer. This gene-therapy approach, however, is not a practical way to treat the millions of people living with HIV.

For the present study, rather than utilizing gene therapy, the researchers used a chemical called TAT2, which was originally identified from plants used in traditional Chinese therapy and which enhances telomerase activity in other cell types...

"The ability to enhance telomerase activity and antiviral functions of CD8 T-lymphocytes suggests that this strategy could be useful in treating HIV disease, as well as immunodeficiency and increased susceptibility to other viral infections associated with chronic diseases or aging," the researchers write.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

How to Get Pregnant over 40...50?

Hello,

Check this video out (most interesting after the 2nd half), with some inspirational stories of women getting pregnant in their late forties and FIFTIES (Dr. Christiane Northrup tells me this is not as uncommon as we think) and naturally (n.b. some of the women portrayed, like Elizabeth Edwards, turned to IVF). Most of the suggestions (actually all) have appeared on GreenFertility, but still, seeing the women with your own eyes is kind of inspiring. Keep yourself in good shape and your fertility will follow...nice combo.

http://naturalfertilityetc.com/get-pregnant-at-any-age/

Saturday, November 08, 2008

In case You're thinking 2012

I think I said it was like the last days of the Marcos regime...John Stewart said it was like the Grifters. I think were were both right:

From Newsweek:

NEWSWEEK has also learned that Palin's shopping spree at high-end department stores was more extensive than previously reported. While publicly supporting Palin, McCain's top advisers privately fumed at what they regarded as her outrageous profligacy. One senior aide said that Nicolle Wallace had told Palin to buy three suits for the convention and hire a stylist. But instead, the vice presidential nominee began buying for herself and her family—clothes and accessories from top stores such as Saks Fifth Avenue and Neiman Marcus. According to two knowledgeable sources, a vast majority of the clothes were bought by a wealthy donor, who was shocked when he got the bill. Palin also used low-level staffers to buy some of the clothes on their credit cards.

The McCain campaign found out last week when the aides sought reimbursement. One aide estimated that she spent "tens of thousands" more than the reported $150,000, and that $20,000 to $40,000 went to buy clothes for her husband. Some articles of clothing have apparently been lost. An angry aide characterized the shopping spree as "Wasilla hillbillies looting Neiman Marcus from coast to coast," and said the truth will eventually come out when the Republican Party audits its books.

read more here

Friday, November 07, 2008

Free Sticker of our Next President!

Hey,

Want a free Obama sticker to celebrate our victory? It's designed by Shepard Fairey, the artist who created the iconic HOPE poster. And MoveOn's giving them away totally free--even the shipping's free.

I just got mine. Click this link to get your free Obama sticker: http://pol.moveon.org/shepstickers/?id=-1271779-3BJcK2x&rc=

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Prenatal Weight Gain Presages Heavy Babies, risk for later in life

Again, if you want to treat your kids right, treat yourself right, first.

From Newswise, the journalists' only site:

Newswise — A study by the Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research of more than 40,000 women and their babies found that women who gained more than 40 pounds during their pregnancies were nearly twice as likely to have a heavy baby. Published in the November issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology, the study found that more than one in five women gains excessive weight during pregnancy, doubling her chances of having a baby that weighs 9 pounds or more.

“Too many women gain too much weight during pregnancy. This extra weight puts them at higher risk for having heavy babies, and these babies are programmed to become overweight or obese later in life,” said study lead author Teresa Hillier, MD, MS, an endocrinologist and senior investigator at the Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research in Oregon and Hawaii. “A big baby also poses serious risks for both mom and baby at birth--for mothers, vaginal tearing, bleeding, and often C-sections, and for the babies, stuck shoulders and broken collar bones. "

While researchers have known for some time about the link between diabetes during pregnancy and heavier birth weights, and recently have learned how maternal weight gain affects the birth weight, this is the first study to determine that women who gain excessive weight are even more likely to have heavy babies than women who are treated for gestational diabetes.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Canadian BAN on bisphenol A

Hello--VOTE VOTE VOTE

Still can't decide if those FDA studies are kind of shaky? Canada would like to err on the side of safety. We have a BAN here, people:

Health Canada makes it official: BPA is health hazard

Sarah Schmidt , Canwest News Service

Published: Thursday, October 16, 2008

OTTAWA - Canada on Saturday will become the first country to formally declare bisphenol A hazardous to human health and officially inform the baby-product industry it will no longer be able to use the chemical in baby bottles.

Canada's announcement comes six months after Health Minister Tony Clement surprised the chemical industry by announcing the government's plan to place bisphenol A on its list of toxic substances and ban its use in baby bottles.

In unveiling the "precautionary and prudent" move, Clement proposed a limited ban of the widely used chemical, also found in hard plastic sports bottles and the lining of food cans.


read more here.

VOTE! VOTE! VOTE!

***RI voters******, vote YES on 2:


Question 2 - the Open Space and Recreation Development Bond - will set
aside $2.5 million (over the next five years) to protect natural
spaces, farms, and state parks from developers. For every $1 set aside
by the state, RI will recieve $3-$4 in matching funds from the federal
gov't, foundations, and rich people. The bond will generate $10
million to preserve Rhode Island's environment. If you are a fan of
local agriculture, this bond is critical to its survival.

The bond must pass or these important preservation programs will end
in Rhode Island. OVER. NADA. NOTHING. DONE. At least for another few
years.

So, if the bond passes, the state only has to set aside $500,000 per
year to save farms, open space, watersheds, shorelines, state parks.
If the bond does not pass, no money will be set aside to protect RI
farmers or to preserve our state's natural resources, and we get NONE
of the matching funds from Washington.


----------------------------------------------
Election 2008 Voting Information

Today, November 4th, is Election Day! Remember to vote—not just for Barack Obama, but for Congressional, state, and local candidates as well.
Where and when do I vote?

Find your polling place, voting times, and other important information by checking out these sites and the hotline below. These resources are good, but not perfect. To be doubly sure, you can also contact your local elections office.

* Obama's VoteForChange site: voteforchange.com
* League of Women Voters' site: vote411.org/pollfinder.php
* Obama's voter hotline: 877-US4-OBAMA (877-874-6226)

What should I do before I go?

* After you've entered your address on either Vote For Change or Vote411, read the voting instructions and special rules for your state.
* Voting ID laws vary from state to state, but if you have ID, bring it.
* Check out all the voting myths and misinformation to look out for: http://truth.voteforchange.com/

What if something goes wrong?

* Not on the voter list? Make sure you're at the right polling place, then demand a provisional ballot.
* If you're voting on an electronic machine with a paper record, verify that the record is accurate.
* Need legal help? Call 1-866-OUR-VOTE.
* Try to get video of the problem and submit it to VideoTheVote.org

Want to do more?

* Text all of your friends: "Vote Obama today! Pass it on!"
* Make calls from home for Obama.

Now everybody go vote!!!

Monday, November 03, 2008

Hollow Assurances of Safety from FDA on Bisphenol-A

Yes, I'm no-fun-at-the-party person excoriating my greenie friends over CFLs (mercury!) and most recently, bisphenol-A, the stuff they put in hard plastics INCLUDING BABY BOTTLES.

My friends and family all thought they were being so green and clean and I kept telling them NOT to use Nalgene bottles. The FDA said the amoung of bisphenol-A (which causes cancer, infertility, diabetes, etc., in animal studies) isn't harmful, based on studies. Of course, whenever the FDA says ANYTHING is okay, I immediately assume the opposite. And whose studies? Plastic makers' studies! The government's own agency is disputing the FDA's findings as well. Stay away from hard plastics, including cans that are plastic lined.

p.s. Rock the Vote! Vote Democrat if you want to vote the party that favors more oversight into these kinds of things (Republicans will sneer and say Dems want are for "more regulation." Since when has this, and caring for the poor, been so laughable???)

From the Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel:

Ignoring hundreds of government and academic studies showing a chemical commonly found in plastic can be harmful to lab animals at low doses, the Food and Drug Administration determined the chemical was safe based on just two industry-funded studies that didn't find harm.

read more here.

And from the NYtimes:

Panel Faults F.D.A. on Stance That Chemical in Plastic Is Safe

A scientific panel has issued a blistering report against the Food and Drug Administration, saying it ignored important evidence in reassuring consumers about the safety of the controversial chemical bisphenol-A.

read more here.

You can use our info

USERNAME: GreenFertility
PASSWORD: GreenFertility

ANSWER TO SECRET QUESTION: soylent green

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

McCain or Obama on vaccine damage?

John McCain did catch my attention when in the primaries he said something about looking into vaccines as a cause of autism.

But then he went all "Walnuts" as Wonkette would say, and I don't know half of what he is saying anymore.

In this Age of Autism piece, it appears McCain IS more responsive to things like parental choice, etc., http://www.ageofautism.com/2008/10/mccain-or-oba-1.html#more

But personally, I've been in the tank for Obama from day 1, and when I look at his picture, I feel happy and calm...when I look at McCain, I feel blech. Well, there is an autistic young man who agrees with me on this, so McCain's admittedly more bold stance on vaccines isn't enough to make me switch:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/elaine-hall/obama-and-autism_b_137571.html

Monday, October 27, 2008

Many doctors give patients placebo treatment

If a placebo works, I think I'd thank my doc for circumventing the need for pharmaceuticals. Note how different the take is on this US vs UK. From Reuters:

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Many American doctors give their patients a placebo, usually a relatively innocuous drug such as a pain reliever, in the guise of medical treatment and view the practice as ethical, researchers said on Thursday.

Among 679 primary-care doctors and rheumatologists, who treat arthritis patients, about half reported prescribing placebos at least two to three times a month and most said they did not explicitly tell patients they were getting a placebo.

The idea may be to trigger the "placebo effect" -- a genuine improvement in health driven by psychological expectations of a benefit and not due to the physiological effect of a given treatment -- in cases in which normal treatment might not be warranted, the researchers said.

More than 60 percent of the doctors who answered the survey published in the British Medical Journal said that prescribing a placebo is ethically permissible.

But such actions run afoul of standards set by the American Medical Association, which asserts it is unethical to use placebo therapy on patients without clearly telling them.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Depression During Pregnancy Can Double Risk of Preterm Delivery

This suggests getting your neurotransmitters in order before you conceive. Remember, serotonin is just ONE of the dozens of neurotransmitters that affect mood. A healthy and balanced person is not depressed. And you might want to note that many PESTICIDES work on insect's neuroendocrine systems...and it's somehow believed that it won't affect humans who eat, breath, absorb the residues, too. Maybe it's magic!

Lastly, you DO need serotonin to build a sufficient uterine lining--this could possibly one of the pathways that depression affects preterm birth. Low serotonin is often a marker of autoimmune disease. When I had my serotonin tested, the doctor was amazed to find it was near zero. He put me on Lexapro right away...and I stopped after two weeks because it made me feel really, really weird and frankly I will never touch the stuff again.

I DID use some natural herbs and things and was able to boost it up to a low, but normal level by my next blood test. Sounds a lot better than rewiring the brain.

From Newswise, the journalists' only site:
---------------------------------------------------------

Newswise — Depressed pregnant women have twice the risk of preterm delivery than pregnant women with no symptoms of depression, according to a new study by the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research. The study is published online in the Oxford University Press’s journal Human Reproduction on behalf of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology.

The study found that pregnant women with symptoms of depression have an increased risk of preterm delivery, and that the risk grows with the severity of the depressive symptoms. These findings also provide preliminary evidence that social and reproductive risk factors, obesity, and stressful events may exacerbate the depression-preterm delivery link, according to the researchers.

Because the majority of the women in the study did not use anti-depressants, the study provides a clear look at the link between depression and preterm delivery.

The study -- which is among the first to examine depression and pre-term delivery in a representative and diverse population in the United States -- looked at 791 pregnant Kaiser Permanente members in San Francisco city and county from October 1996 through October 1998.

Researchers interviewed the women around their 10th week of pregnancy and found that 41 percent of the women reported significant or severe depressive symptoms. The women with less severe depressive symptoms had a 60 percent higher risk of preterm delivery -- defined as delivery at less than 37 completed weeks of gestation -- compared with women without significant depressive symptoms, and the women with severe depressive symptoms had more than twice the risk.

“Preterm delivery is the leading cause of infant mortality, and yet we don’t know what causes it. What we do know is that a healthy pregnancy requires a healthy placenta, and that placental function is influenced by hormones, which are in turn influenced by the brain,” said lead author Dr. De-Kun Li, a reproductive and perinatal epidemiologist at Kaiser Permanente’s Division of Research in Oakland.

“This study adds to emerging evidence that depression during early pregnancy may interfere with the neuroendocrine pathways and subsequently placental function. The placenta and neuroendocrine functions play an important role in maintaining the health of a pregnancy and determining the onset of labor,” Li explained.