women 4 hope

Dedicated to addressing women’s issues.

Archive for October, 2007

Invisible Toxins In Everyday Products Are Making You And Your Family Sick

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 30, 2007

hazmatte.gif image from

Invisible Toxins In Everyday Products Are Making You And Your Family Sick — by Catherine Morgan

Are You Unknowingly Making Your Child Sick? Moms need to know what invisible toxins are in the everyday products they provide to their children.

A disturbing story came to light this week, from CNN’s Planet In Peril series. Our children are being exposed to such high levels of industrial chemicals, that studies are showing many of them to have up to seven times greater levels in their blood than their parents. Think about that for a minute. If their levels are this high now…How high do you think they will be by the time they are adults?

With so many cancers and chronic illnesses being blamed on environmental causes…How sick do you think these children might be by the time they are parents? How many might be unable to be parents? We are talking about chemicals that are known carcinogens, and known to be in products we and our children are using every day. It’s a much larger problem than I had ever realized…especially for our children.

Of course, we can not be sure how these exposures will affect our children’s future health, only time will tell. But, if these studies are any indication, the future is very troubling.

READ FULL POST AT BlogHer

Posted in awareness, BlogHer, breast cancer, cancer, children, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic illness, family, food, Health, kids, opinion, parenting, political, Women | 2 Comments »

Respiratory Care Week

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 25, 2007

lungs-blue.jpg

When Breathing Hurts — by Catherine Morgan (cross-posted at BlogHer

With all the attention breast cancer gets this month, it’s easy to forget that there are many other diseases that are also recognized in October. Next week, October 21st -27nd is Respiratory Care week, so I decided to devote this post to Lung Disease awareness, and some of the bloggers that are giving it to us.

There are many different types of lung disease…COPD, Asthma, Lung Cancer, TB, Cystic Fibrosis, Sleep Apnea, to name a few. All of these conditions can range from mild symptoms to severe, and even if you don’t suffer from one of them, it’s very likely you know someone who does.

READ FULL POST AT BLOGHER

(image from)

Posted in awareness, blogging, Blogroll, cancer, chronic illness, Health, life, Women | Tagged: , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Blog Day For The MOTHERS Act

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 24, 2007

Blog Day for the Mothers Act

Today is Blog Day for The MOTHERS Act. See how you can help…

Thank you for taking time to participate in this LIFE SAVING legislative initiative which will help to end the suffering of thousands of mothers, infants and families, while offering education, research and training to those who are charged with their care. Together, we are a powerful force to support the promotion of The MOTHERS Act until it becomes federal law. The implementation of this pivotal prosocial supportive legislation will offer crucial safeguards to women, children and families.

PLEASE LET OUR NATION AND LEGISLATORS KNOW YOU WILL NOT STAND FOR THIS ISSUE TO BE IGNORED ANY LONGER. Below you will find a complete listing of U.S. Senators and their Washington DC telephone numbers. This is a bipartisan issue that BOTH Democratic and Republican state senators need to support. Just PICK UP THE PHONE and CALL!! If the line is busy, call back or leave your message.

Posted in blogging, BlogHer, current events, depression, family, feminism, life, motherhood, mothers, parenting, political, Politics, Women | 6 Comments »

Oprah Show Controversy: Dr. Northrup Seems To Be Blaming Women For Their Diseases

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 23, 2007

oprah-thyroid.jpg

Is Your Illness All Your Fault? — by Catherine Morgan (cross-posted at BlogHer)

It seem that Oprah has ruffled a few feathers while explaining her recent bout with thyroid problems. Some are saying that she is just using a thyroid problem as an excuse for a recent 20 pound weight gain. Others find her method of treatment [a one month trip to her Hawaii estate for total relaxation and healthy eating] to be a bit grandiose, and not exactly a treatment available to the average woman with thyroid disease. And then others are a bit taken back by her “expert” Dr. Northrup, and her attempt to blame the patients (mostly women) for their thyroid disease.

See what I mean at Oprah’s Thyroid Club (with 85 comments) —From The New York Times

…The downside is that the talk show host has been vague about her diagnosis and treatment and even suggested that her body’s imbalance of thyroid hormones was the result of working too hard and not relaxing enough. Her main “treatment” approach seemed to be quitting work for a month and eating only fresh food at her tropical Hawaiian estate.

“While good nutrition, exercise, and self-care are certainly part of overall good health, they are not likely to cure your thyroid condition,’’ writes Mary Shoman, founder of a well-known thyroid disease Web site and the author of several books on the topic. “It may have worked for Oprah, but …I doubt most of us could ever aspire to such a luxurious recuperation.”

Ms. Winfrey hasn’t detailed her specific diagnosis, but Ms. Shoman says the description sounds like Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, an autoimmune disease that is characterized by the thyroid’s gradual decline into hypothyroidism, interspersed with periods “when the thyroid sputters to life and becomes temporarily overactive.” Avoiding medical treatment is only an option for those with very mild thyroid problems, notes Ms. Shoman, who worries some women may try to self-treat rather than consulting a doctor about their symptoms…

BlogHer Contributing Editor Laurie wrote:

“Here’s what else Dr. Northrup has to say about thyroid disease:

“In many women thyroid dysfunction develops because of an energy blockage in the throat region, the result of a lifetime of ‘swallowing’ words one is aching to say. In the name of preserving harmony, or because these women have learned to live as relatively helpless members of their families or social groups, they have learned to stifle their self-expression….It’s no coincidence that so many more women than men have thyroid problems. Thyroid disease is related to expressing your feelings…””

For me, there is no doubt that some degree of a mind/body connection exists. Personally, I know that when under great stress or anxiety, that my medical problems will often become worse. However, there is a thin line between “connection” and “blame”…and it seems this Dr. Northrup may have just crossed that line.

This is what she had to say…

Dr. Northrup says your health depends on what’s going on with your mind, body and soul, and your symptoms are actually your soul’s way of bringing deeper issues to your attention. “You’re in labor with yourself because everything that no longer serves your highest purpose and your optimal health starts to go away and your body gives you signals—’Hey, you’ve been putting too much stuff under the carpet emotionally, nutritionally, not exercising … putting everyone else first. The kids, the husband, the job, whatever,'” Dr. Northrup says. “And your soul is saying, ‘What about me? What about me?’ And your body will start getting symptoms to hit you over the head with till you wake up.”

Well, that just doesn’t make much sense…There are plenty of depressed people that don’t have a single medical problem wrong with them, as there are plenty of people who suffer with numerous medical issues that are not in the least bit depressed.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could all just go to our “happy place” and will our medical problems away? Yes, it sure would be…But, in “reality” medical problems happen…regardless of your state of mind. So all of this talk about Thyroid disease stemming from an underlying emotional problem…well, no wonder why people are getting a bit upset. Oprah may be spotlighting thyroid disease, but the medical community blaming the patient for their health problems is not new at all. Just ask anyone who suffers from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, Irritable Bowl Syndrome, just to name a few. And actually, Dr. Northrup names many more…

The first thing Dr. Northrup wants Rachel to do is to make a list of five things she wants to do—and then do them! The five things Rachel chooses to do may help improve her health in the long run. “When you do those, they decrease cellular inflammation. This isn’t just some kind of pop psychology. They decrease inflammation in your cells and cellular inflammation is the beginning of all chronic degenerative disease,” she says. “So headaches, high blood pressure, cancer, arthritis, diabetes, it all begins with cellular inflammation. Things that bring you joy quell stress hormones in the body and decrease cellular inflammation.”

I imagine Dr. Northrup doesn’t actually suffer from any of these pesky “cellular inflammations”, otherwise how could she even say any of this with a straight face. She is basically saying that people with cancer, thyroid disease, and many other chronic illnesses, have brought this all on themselves. When someone suffering hears this kind of crazy talk, they actually begin to believe that their illness is their own fault. And that’s not even the worst thing. What is worse, is when that person believes that if they could just emotionally “fix” themselves, they could make themselves better [in this case, just like Oprah]. And when they don’t get better…again, they will feel it is their own fault.

From Stop The Thyroid Madness

And when she finally has a program which somewhat addresses the thyroid issue this week, she allows her hallowed guest, Dr. Christiane Northrup, to state “your symptoms are actually your soul’s way of bringing deeper issues to your attention.” Hogwash! And thyroid patient Mary Shoman has rightly proclaimed that “thyroid disease is NOT your fault, despite what Dr. Northrup says.”

How do you feel about these comments by Dr. Northrup?

Also See:

Domestic Divapalooza

The Beach Life

THE MAGAZINE ARTICLE THAT STARTED IT ALL

What’s the number, Oprah? — from Cardiogirl

Contributing Editor Catherine Morgan
also at CatherineBlogs.com and The Political Voices of Women

Posted in blogging, BlogHer, blood pressure, cancer, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic illness, depression, Health, heart disease, life, motherhood, opinion, parenting, thoughts, Women | 17 Comments »

News: A Political Blog Especially For Women

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 22, 2007

A Political Blog Especially For Women — by Catherine Morgan

Hi everyone. This weekend I decided to expand on my list of over 200 women blogging on politics. And I started a whole new blog where I will feature these women and their political opinions…It’s called The Political Voices of Women.

I hope you will check it out, and let me know what you think.

Thanks.

Posted in blogging, BlogHer, feminism, life, media, news, opinion, political, Politics, thoughts, Women | 2 Comments »

80% of Women and 92% of Girls Are Dissatisfied With Their Bodies

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 18, 2007

dove-women.jpg

UPDATE:  I’m am now also at Capessa Health and Fitness.  You might be interested in my post Top 3 Tips For Health Eating.

Hollywood and the fashion, cosmetics and diet industries work hard to make each of us believe that our bodies are unacceptable and need constant improvement. Print ads and television commercials reduce us to body parts — lips, legs, breasts — airbrushed and touched up to meet impossible standards. TV shows tell women and teenage girls that cosmetic surgery is good for self-esteem. Is it any wonder that more than 80% of fourth-grade girls have been on some form of fad diet? Is it any wonder that 80% of U.S. women are dissatisfied with their appearance? — go to Love You Body

92% of girls want to change at least one aspect of their appearance. Dove believes all girls deserve to see how beautiful they really are and is committed to raising self-esteem in girls everywhere. That’s why we created the Dove Self-Esteem Fund.” — above image is from Dove campaign

Sussane Reisman, BlogHer contributing editor, did a great post on body image a few weeks ago.

Just look at some of these ads that are offensive to women. No wonder women can’t be happy with their bodies, the images of what they “think” they should look like are based 100% on men’s fantasies (not reality).

So, what can be done? Will this ever change?

Today is LOVE YOUR BODY DAY – You can learn more about it here.

On a more positive note, I received this in my email today…

Banish Your Self-Hater

Posted in body image, children, depression, dieting, feminism, happiness, Health, life, parenting, teens, Women | Tagged: , , , | 11 Comments »

Women’s Health Issues In The News

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 18, 2007

In Women’s Health News — by Catherine Morgan (cross-posted at BlogHer)

I decided to post on some of the interesting health and wellness issues that have been in the news this week…

Starting with the Autism Speaks website…They now have video examples of children with autism, compared to children without, in the hopes of helping parents recognize early signs of the disease. Also, a new study shows that the United States is lagging behind in maternal health, and the House urges health agencies to expand research into Postpartum Depression.

 

With 1 in every 150 children having some degree of Autism, knowing the symptoms and being diagnosed early is critical. This week Autism Speaks is helping parents learn what is common behavior for most children, as compared to what is common in an Autistic child, with the use of videos.

See this Associated Press Video on the new website. (2 minutes)

Please keep in mind that there are many presenting features associated with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) that are depicted in the video clips you are about to see. However, most children do not show all of the features all of the time. Instead, many children have some of the features some of the time. Awareness of these common presenting features may help to heighten your index of suspicion. Individually, they may not indicate a problem; however, in combination, they may indicate a need to conduct a screening or a diagnostic evaluation. Not all signs and features need be present for ASD to be diagnosed.

By viewing these videos of symptoms found in Autism, parents can help recognize a potential problem early, and bring it to the attention of their child’s pediatrician.

As always, there are critics of this idea who believe that these videos may cause unnecessary worry for parents. However, as both a nurse and a mother, I would say that the potential benefits to parents viewing these videos, far outweighs any potential risk of undue worry.

In spite of all the controversy over the treatment and the politics of Autism, I think one thing everyone can agree on, is the importance of early diagnosis and treatment. With such a short amount of time that a child will actually spend with their doctor, parents are the first line of defense when it comes to recognizing the symptoms their children are exhibiting.

Then there is a new study showing that the United States is lagging behind in maternal health, this also happens to be a topic that is being addressed by the BlogHer community, through BlogHer Acts. I found the statistics on this quite disturbing, and shocking. We do still live in the richest country in the world, right?

The United States has a far higher death rate than the European average, the report shows, with one in 4,800 U.S. women dying from complications of pregnancy or childbirth, the same as Belarus and just slightly better than Serbia’s rate of one in 4,500.

Just one out of 47,600 women in Ireland die during or just after childbirth, the report found. Bosnia had the second-lowest rate, with 1 in 29,000 women dying during pregnancy and childbirth. — read full article here

The United States is ranked 41st in the world for maternal mortality, with 1 in 4,800 women dying from pregnancy complications.This is what they are saying at Chrone Speaks

While the BBC article uses a graph from the Lancet, showing the rise or drop in maternal mortality around the world, I’d like to point out that the US is lumped in with other developing nations.

However, just a few short months ago, in August, there was a very disturbing report that maternal mortality rates were rising in the US.

Causes of the rising maternal mortality rates for the US can be listed in a few short words:

  1. abstinence only education
  2. closing women’s clinics
  3. laws restricting (safe) abortions

I hope the anti-abortionist take note of this — they are the principle reason why women are dying untimely deaths — the rate of unsafe abortions has not changed since 1995.

They make a pretty good point…Look what is happening in Aurora, with the attempt to stop the opening of a Planned Parenthood there. If one truly cares about life, then one should care about all life, including women and mothers. It seems to me there is a degree of rational thought that is sometimes being excluded from many people’s biblical interpretation of life. And ignoring that only results in more lives lost…When will the Pro-Life Movement start being Pro-”All Life”???

Also in the news…The House urges health agencies to expand research into postpartum depression. This is another issue that the BlogHer community is passionate about. This cause is being led by Katherine Stone…

Katherine Stone suffered postpartum obsessive compulsive disorder with the birth of her son in 2001. She is now an advocate for women with postpartum mood disorders, primarily through her blog Postpartum Progress, the most widely-read blog in the United States on these illnesses, which include postpartum depression, postpartum OCD and postpartum psychosis. — read more about Katherine here

From the Associated Press

The bill cites studies that up to 80 percent of new mothers experience “baby blues,” characterized by mood swings, feelings of being overwhelmed and irritability.

It said more serious postpartum mood and anxiety disorders, which can occur during pregnancy and anytime within the first year of the infant’s birth, impair between 10 and 20 percent of new mothers.

Postpartum psychosis, striking one in 1,000 new mothers, may entail losing touch with reality, delusions, auditory hallucinations, paranoia and hyperactivity.

It notes that while the causes of postpartum depression are unknown, theories include a steep and rapid drop in hormone levels after childbirth, difficulty during labor or pregnancy and external factors such as a lack of support from one’s spouse, stressful events such as the death of a loved one or a previous history of depression.

Rush said 90 percent of depression cases are treatable, but that only 15 percent of women with postpartum depression receive treatment.

So these are some of the health issues in the news this week…Are you or your family being affected by any of these issues?

Posted in autism, awareness, blogging, BlogHer, children, chronic illness, depression, family, Health, life, motherhood, parenting, Women | 6 Comments »

Is Dark Chocolate Good For Your Health? Or does someone just want you to think it is?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 17, 2007

 

chocolate.jpg

Questioning The Motives of the Chocolate Industry — by Catherine Morgan (cross-posted at CatherineBlogs.com)

Fool me once, shame on you…fool me twice, shame on me. Could dark chocolate be good for your? Could it help lower your blood pressure? Cure symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?

When news of scientific studies about the benefits of dark chocolate came out a few months ago, I thought…maybe there could be something to this, it seemed odd, but still possible? And, I wouldn’t have had too much reason to doubt these claims…until they just took the whole thing a little bit too far.

I first became skeptical when I read that another new study found dark chocolate could help with symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. It didn’t seem to me that we needed scientific research to prove that a product with caffeine in it would increase a persons energy. However, that is not necessarily the best way for a person with CFS to get additional energy. But, the thing that made me question the research was that they never mentioned caffeine at all, they just made it seem that “something” in the chocolate is helping with fatigue. Pretty vague if you ask me, but it sure is selling a lot of dark chocolate.

The “report” finds that strong consumer interest in the reported health benefits of dark chocolate and a general trend towards product premiumization (including organic and fair trade products) are the main drivers in current market growth.

Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah…seriously…how many more times are we going to have to read about these (alleged) health benefits of chocolate? Is anyone actually buying this argument or is it simply a lobby to help people mitigate self-imposed guilt? Are you purposefully putting chocolate in your diet to take advantage of these healthy claims? I’d love to hear if you are. — read full article

So, why then is this dark chocolate “research” getting so much press? Could it be that the chocolate industry itself is behind all of the recent “chocolate propaganda”? Well, I didn’t want to think that could be true, I already know we can’t trust most of Corporate America…But the sweet little chocolate factories, they would never deceive us…right? WRONG?

The Hershey Co. is expanding its Goodness Chocolate portfolio with the debut of Hershey’s Antioxidant Milk Chocolate and Hershey’s Whole Bean Chocolate. These chocolates join Hershey’s Extra Dark Chocolate and Hershey’s Sticks brands in offering consumers Hershey’s brand of chocolate with good-for-you benefits.

“Consumers are very interested in the goodness benefits of chocolate, including the antioxidants found naturally in dark chocolate,” said Michele Buck, senior vice president, chief marketing officer, The Hershey Company. “This interest is driving explosive growth in dark chocolate. Now, Hershey’s Antioxidant Milk Chocolate and Hershey’s Whole Bean Chocolate bring the goodness benefits of dark chocolate to the broader milk chocolate category.” — read full article

 

Can anyone say, “give me a break”?

All the chocolate companies are jumping on this band-wagon. Have you noticed that just about every chocolate candy now also has a dark chocolate version (ie: kit-kat, m&m, kisses)? Does anyone really think that eating more dark chocolate is going to lower the rate of heart disease in this country? I think it could actually have the opposite affect.
U.S. Chocolate Sales Forecast to Reach $18 Billion by 2011!

Well played chocolate industry. No need to even waste money on advertising, just let the media report on bogus research that deceives the public into thinking chocolate is good for their health. You can bet some PR guy is getting a huge bonus and a raise.

Central to the company’s outlook for 2007 is building on its presence in the dark chocolate sector – one of the fastest growing businesses in the Hershey portfolio last year.

In September, Hershey introduced a new range of single origin dark chocolate products and went on to further capitalize on consumer trends by entering the organic market with the acquisition of the Dagoba chocolate company in October. — read full article

So in conclusion…I love dark chocolate and nothing will ever change that. But I am appalled by the deception that the chocolate industry is using to increase their sales and profits. If “flavanols” help lower blood pressure, then eat foods that contain them, but that don’t also have caffeine. Caffeine increases a person’s blood pressure, so it doesn’t make any sense to use chocolate as a means to lower it. As you can see by Hersey’s own studies, every other food with this beneficial ingredient has no caffeine and is 100% natural.

ORAC per serving of foods which contain antioxidants.

So yes, get you antioxidants…Go buy yourself some blueberries, or raspberries, or pecans, or cranberries, or walnuts, or almonds, or red grapes, or prunes (well, maybe not prunes). Save the chocolates for a treat not a treatment.

Posted in blogging, blood pressure, chronic illness, dark chocolate, dieting, food, Health, life, news, opinion, thoughts | 11 Comments »

List of (over) 200 Women Blogging on Politics

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 14, 2007

Our list that began with just under 100 women bloggers blogging on politics, is now well over 200. You can check it out here. My thanks to everyone who has contributed and continues to contribute to this list…I couldn’t have done it without you.

eff_bloggers.png

Posted in blogging, BlogHer, current events, feminism, informed voters, life, media, mom's, motherhood, news, political, Politics, Women | Leave a Comment »

Breast Cancer Treatment…What Is Your Life Worth?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 12, 2007

women.jpg

Breast Cancer Treatment…What Is Your Life Worth? — by Catherine Morgan (cross-posted at BlogHer)

Revolutionary new cancer drugs offer hope where there was none. But the price tag may be too high for some to bear.

Many Americans are already having to decide between food on the table and their prescription medications. The health care crisis is hitting hard, and the cost of prescription drugs is sky-rocketing. But what happens when you have to decide between expensive breast cancer treatments to save your life, and paying the mortgage on your house? How much could you afford to spend, to save your life? It’s not even a fair question to ask, but many cancer patients are being forced to answer it.

This is an excerpt from a recent article in SELF magazine

Seven months after being diagnosed with stage IIIB inflammatory breast cancer, 37-year-old Diekmeyer had spent nearly 100 days in doctors’ offices or the hospital near her Ohio home. She’d had five surgeries, with another scheduled for September; slogged through more than three months of grisly chemotherapy; suffered the indignities of baldness and violent nausea. After all that, she still didn’t know if she’d survive the year. But Diekmeyer had another, more immediate, fear keeping her up nights. Because of mounting medical bills, she was worried she might lose her home.

Marianna took a look at “What is your life worth?” — Marianna is a military veteran with over 16 years of service, and is a college graduate with degrees in political science and human resource. This is what she thinks…

Ever the advocate for women’s health and the pursuit of advancing women’s issues in medical science, I was reading Self Magazine’s article bought today while flipping through the stacks of magazines to buy while contemplating what to make for dinner (okay I digress……) in regards to the journey of several women plagued with cancer and the expensive drugs out there being sold to save their lives. — read her full post here

As a nurse working on an oncology unit many years ago, I would sometimes think about whether or not I would choose to have debilitating chemo treatments if I were ever diagnosed with an incurable cancer. Not that I wouldn’t want to live, I just sometimes wondered, if I were faced with the dilemma of quality vs. quantity, what would I choose? I never thought back then, that I (or anyone else for that matter) might someday be faced with not even having a choice. But that is exactly what is happening today.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in blogging, BlogHer, breast cancer, cancer, chronic illness, daughters, family, Health, inspirational, life, Politics, Women | Leave a Comment »

Can A Woman Be A Political Blogger?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 8, 2007

 

blogging.gif

What Is A Political Blogger? — by Catherine Morgan (cross-posted at Informed Voters)

I was doing a little blog surfing and came across a post at MyDD “What is a political blogger?” There are people that seem to think not all women blogging about politics can be considered political bloggers, I disagree. This is my response. What do you think?

What is a political blogger? I’m not sure we really need to “define” it, so much as we need to understand it. Political blogs are proof that many people want more than just the “main-stream” media to inform them of political topics and opinions. And the same holds true for readers of political blogs, many want more than a one sided, 24/7 view of politics. Women bloggers are offering diversity to their readers (who are potential voters), and that’s a good thing.

Women are a huge voting block, and in 2008 they will be voting on issues that are important to them, and many of these issues aren’t being sufficiently addressed in the same way they are on blogs authored by women. For this reason “all” political blogs are relevant, and there isn’t a right or wrong way to blog about politics.

If a “mommy blogger” blogs even just a few times a month on a political issue relevant to her readers, then she is reaching “voters”. For the most part, what we now know as “traditional” political blogging, has in many cases been a “mirror” of what is being reported in the “main-stream” media (although still better because it at least allows readers to comment with their opinions). But, this leaves a huge “political blogging” gap that is being filled by women, women with diverse ideas on both blogging and politics.

Women “will” be a force to reckon with in the next election, and blogging will be a defining part in that. With that in mind, I (with the help of many other bloggers) compiled a list of over 100 women (almost 200), that are blogging about politics. These women are blogging in their own “unique” styles, and reaching many voters.

So, (as far as I’m concerned) there is no way to “define” what a political blogger is, because a political blogger is anyone that is being read by a potential voter.

(above image from)

Posted in blogging, Blogroll, feminism, life, media, opinion, political, Politics, thoughts, Women, writing | 2 Comments »

Breast Cancer Awareness: Do you know what your environmental risks are?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 5, 2007

breast-cancer-risk.jpg

Click here to see what the numbers mean in this picture.

Breast Cancer Awareness: The Environmental Risks — by Catherine Morgan (cross-posted at BlogHer)

I was honored to be asked and participate in a phone conference this week on breast cancer, sponsored by LUNA and the Breast Cancer Fund, together they have established Pure Prevention. The call brought two nationally recognized environmental health experts, Dr. Janet Gray and the Executive Director of the Breast Cancer Fund, Jeanne Rizzo, to answer questions from a selected group of health bloggers. It was an hour conference that anyone can listen to here.

The focus of this conference and Pure Prevention, is to look at ways a woman can lower her risk of breast cancer by lowering her environmental risks. Many of these risks I was not even aware of, so I am grateful to have been a part of this discussion. My thanks to Cynthia Samuels for inviting me to participate.

Because only 1 out of 10 women who have breast cancer have a genetic history of the disease, what women put on and in their bodies can make the difference. Pure Prevention is a new campaign that seeks to expand on the “cure-centered” breast cancer conversation by helping women identify the environmental causes of the disease and inspiring them to make smart choices about the products they use every day.

One of the questions I asked, was about environmental risks that might not be getting enough attention, and that many women might be unaware of. Several were brought to my attention, including “ionizing radiation” and “electromagnetic fields“. However, the one I found most disturbing, was about the chemicals that are known to be dangerous but are still being used in the packaging of our foods. So even when you are eating a healthy diet, you could still be ingesting many chemicals that could be harmful your health. Frustrating isn’t it?

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in blogging, BlogHer, breast cancer, cancer, children, chronic illness, family, feminism, Health, life, motherhood, parenting, political, teens, Women, women's health, YouTube | 6 Comments »

Vaccines, Antibiotics, and Antibacterial Cleaners: Are they helping or hurting us?

Posted by Catherine Morgan on October 2, 2007

flu-shot.jpg

Germs, Viruses, and Vaccines — by Catherine Morgan (cross-posted at BlogHer)

My last post was about germs and protecting yourself from them. For this post, I will be exploring why being “germ free” may actually be doing more harm than good. Let’s start by looking at the Antibacterial Cleaners that have become so popular in our “germ-a-phobe” society. Could it be that our fight against the “germ” is actually causing our lives to be “Too clean“, and possibly less healthy?

The problem with trying to eliminate germs, bacteria, and viruses from our lives, is that our immune systems need the opportunity to fight off these things. When we don’t use our immune system, we allow it to atrophy. And then, when we do become exposed to something it should be able to fight off, our immune system can forget what it’s suppose to do.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in BlogHer, children, chronic illness, family, Health, kids, medicine, opinion, parenting, vaccines, viruses, Women | 3 Comments »