Category Archives: Miscellaneous (All)

Artificial Dyes linked to Hyperactivity

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This is taken from a petition I received in my mail.  To sign the petition, click here

I could add my own comments here… but this lady has worded it well.  I would only add that it’s not just candies we need to be concerned with, but any food (and there are many) that these items are used in.  I’ve seen Yellow 5, Yellow 6 and Red 40 in several different things, and it’s adversely affecting our kids.  Even if your child has not received an ADD/ADHD diagnosis, it could still be causing behavioral problems of a sort… and it is something that our children do NOT need to have in their diets.  Interestingly… in Europe, they actually put WARNINGS if these dyes are used in food!  Why can’t we in the US do the same…? *sigh* good ole FDA, always watching our backs…. :/   Here is her text in its entirety, you can click on the link above or on the bottom below her post.  It is definitely worth a read… here it is:

“Did you know that M&M’s candies contain harmful, petroleum-based, artificial dyes that can trigger hyperactivity in sensitive children? I believe eliminating these dyes did wonders for my family’s health. M&M’s are already made without most of those dyes in Europe so I don’t understand why they are being made with cheaper, controversial ingredients in North America? Please sign my petition asking for M&M’s to be made without artificial dyes.

I’m a mom to two kids, and we like having some sweets around the house like most people do. Several years ago our little Trenton (now 9 years old) was having some behavioral problems. He was having trouble in school, at hockey practice, and at home with tasks as basic as falling asleep. He’d often have nightmares, and the slightest disappointment would set him off. As I did some research, I found out that parents all across the country have been struggling with similar hyperactivity issues. I also found out that many families were using an “elimination diet” to isolate and remove harmful ingredients — particularly artificial dyes. By removing dyes like those found in M&M’s, they were able to delay, reduce, and sometimes eliminate the need for medication.

Some of the latest info from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates that more than 1 out of every 10 school-aged child has received a medical diagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder! My understanding is that’s a 41% percent increase in the past decade, and that’s why I’m so interested in trying to find simple solutions that will help make our families healthier.

I’m not trying to keep my kids from being kids.  They can have treats.  But they don’t need petroleum-based dyes.

Just two days after deciding to eliminate artificial dyes from Trenton’s diet, we saw dramatic improvements! His nightmares stopped and he was able to sleep through the night. Trent changed from a child who would have a meltdown if he didn’t get his way during playtime to a calm student who could share and do his schoolwork. When Trenton returned to hockey camp, the coach couldn’t believe he was the same person, calling him “smiling, eager to participate, and a joy to have on the ice.” Trenton’s teachers and coaches all know him for his sense of humor, wit and contagious positive attitude. Trenton excels in academics and sports, and this has been possible since our family figured out the harmful effects of the dyes.

We did this without medication and by eliminating harmful dyes like the Yellow 5, Yellow 6, and Red 40 found in M&M’s. When M&M’s are sold in Europe, different dyes are used because otherwise they’d be required by law to place a label on the packaging that says “may have an adverse effect on activity and attention in children.”

With Halloween coming up, I’ve decided to work with the experts at the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) on this campaign. Their review of scientific studies shows that artificial dyes including Yellow 5, Yellow 6, and Red 40 can stimulate hyperactivity and other behavior problems in children.  CSPI has recommended that these additives be prohibited from use in foods. I was present at a 2011 hearing where even the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) acknowledged that “Exposure to food and food components, including artificial food colors and preservatives, may be associated with adverse behaviors” in children.

M&M’s used to be one of Trenton’s favorite candies, but we’ve found products in the United States like SunDrops, Yummy Gummies, and Unreal that don’t use these dyes. And they taste great! I don’t believe anyone should be eating cheap, harmful, unnecessary dyes when safer alternatives exist and already are used in M&M’s in Europe! Please join us in asking Mars Inc., manufacturer of M&M’s, to replace artificial dyes with natural coloring.”

https://www.change.org/petitions/m-m-s-candies-stop-using-artificial-dyes-linked-to-hyperactivity#

HerbMentor News 82: Holy Basil Tulsi Tea

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HerbMentor News 82: Holy Basil Tulsi Tea.

This was my first foray into making my own herbal teas directly from dried leaves, flowers, etc.  This tea is an ayurvedic remedy, good for so many things!!  This is posted from herbmentor.com… check it out and give it a try!

I made it for the first time last night and loved it… and it’s pretty too!  Nice and pink, add a little agave nectar (PLEASE leave out the sugar… that just ruins the whole healthy aspect :P ) and VOILA  you have an awesome health perk right in your cup!

The Amazing Holy Basil & Tasty Tulsi Tonic Tea

by Rosalee de la Forêt

Our featured herb at HerbMentor.com for the months of May and June is holy basil or tulsi (Ocimum sanctum).

This mint family plant has been a sacred and important medicinal plant in India. Tulsi is one of those plants that will amaze you with the many ways it can support health and well-being.

As an adaptogen…

Tulsi’s main claim to fame in the western world is as an adaptogen. In Ayurveda they refer to it as a rasayana. This term is similar to the Chinese term tonics. It basically means that this is a transformative herb and, when taken daily, it moves a person towards health. These are generally building and nourishing herbs.

I often hear people say that they don’t want to be taking herbs for the rest of their life, the idea being that if they were healthy they wouldn’t need to take herbs. In this sense, people are equating herbs with pharmaceutical drugs. However, in other systems of healing like Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda, specific herbs are taken for a lifetime to ensure vibrant health and longevity. Holy basil is one of these herbs.

Holy basil not only helps the body adapt to stress, it can also promote energy and endurance. One way it does this is by increasing the body’s ability to efficiently use oxygen.

Holy basil is a relaxing nervine that can help calm the mind and recover from our hustle and bustle culture.

As an herb for the heart…

Tulsi has many beneficial actions on the heart. It is slightly blood thinning and promotes good circulation. It can lower stress-related high blood pressure and taken daily it can help optimize cholesterol levels. Stress can play an ugly role in overall cardiovascular health and the adaptogenic properties of tulsi can help mediate stress-related damage.

In Ayurveda, a formula that is balancing to all who take it (tridoshic) is made up of tulsi, arjuna and hawthorne.

For musculoskeletal pain

In scientific studies, holy basil has been shown to be a COX 2 inhibitor (many modern pain medications are COX 2 inhibitors), making it useful against arthritis and other inflammatory conditions. Tulsi is high in eugenol, a constituent also found in cloves, which is helpful to decrease pain.

Holy basil growing in southern France.

And more! This is just a smattering of beneficial uses for this amazing plant. It’s also used for viral infections, fungal infections, radiation exposure, high blood sugar, hay fever, the herpes virus, anxiety, high blood pressure and on and on and on!

Note: I know some of you are wondering if our common culinary plant, basil, is the same as tulsi or holy basil and the answer is no. Our culinary plant, Ocimum basilicum, is a different species although they do have some overlapping properties and uses. There are over 60 different species in the Ocimum genus.

A “Tulsi Journey”

Many members of the HerbMentor.com community have signed up for a tulsi journey.

We’ve agreed to take tulsi as a tea or tincture daily for thirty days and then report back on what our experiences are. We can share recipes and different ways we experiment with taking tulsi as well as changes in how we feel.

Since we are drinking tulsi tea daily at my house I have been experimenting with all sorts of different recipes. Today I am going to share one of my favorites.

To make this tea you’ll need…

To make this tea simply place the herbs in your tea pot.

Pour in the just-boiled hot water.

Let steep for 10 – 15 minutes and then pour.

…And enjoy!

~Rosalee

P.S.

If we collect enough recipes from HerbMentor.com members I’ll be making it into a community ebook! Look for it on HerbMentor.com.

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The Ghost of Us – new poetry

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The Ghost of Us.

New poetry I’ve written.  Forgive the dark tone :)  You may want to zoom it a bit so some of the words can be seen more clearly.

Are you in Peri-Menopause? (sorry guys, don’t look! LOL)

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Has your body over the last few years started to go a little (or a lot) wacky?  Feel like you’re falling apart but know you’re too young to feel this way?  In your 30’s or older?  Have several symptoms and they seem unrelated?  No, it’s not in your head.  It’s in your hormones!

The bad news is… this may be normal.  And the good news is… this may be normal.  Basically, it’s just like that saying “life happens.”

You, my friend, may be in… da da DA… (dramataic pause)……………  the early stages of perimenopause.  And you thought it couldn’t happen to you!

More good news though… you can help alleviate the symptoms you might be having, like this whopping list:

  • abdominal bloating
  • agoraphobia
  • aggression, anger, rage, resentment
  • alcoholism, particularly pre-menstrually
  • allergies
  • anxiety, nervousness, irrational fear
  • arthritis, joint and muscle pains
  • blood clots
  • breast tenderness
  • bruising and capillary breakage
  • chronic fatigue – muscular weakness, procrastination, exhaustion, tiredness, mental confusion, difficulty in getting up after enough sleep, lethargy
  • clumsiness
  • cold hands and feet
  • constipation
  • cracked heels
  • cravings, eating disorders, binges, inability to tolerate long intervals without food
  • cysts – breast and ovarian
  • dizziness
  • depression – loneliness, uselessness, endless crying, irrational behaviour
  • fibroids
  • guilt
  • hair loss and excessive facial hair
  • headache
  • hot flushes and night sweats
  • hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar)
  • hypothyroidism
  • incontinence
  • insomnia
  • irregular menstrual flow, heavy or light flow
  • irritability
  • lack of self confidence and esteem
  • libido loss
  • memory loss
  • mood swings and irritability
  • nails – flaking, brittle and weak
  • osteoporosis
  • palpitations
  • panic attacks
  • personality changes
  • skin problems-dry skin and early ageing of the skin
  • sleep disturbances
  • tension
  • urinary tract infections, cystitis
  • vaginal thinning, dryness and itching
  • violence-verbal and physical
  • violent dreams
  • weight gain
  • water retention
Yes, it is glorious to be a woman… ;) 

It just doesn’t get much better than that! *smile*

                    Read more: http://www.progesteronetherapy.com/peri-menopause.html#ixzz1uYcnVtFp Under Creative Commons License: Attribution

All kidding aside… if you have many of these symptoms… it could be worth your while to consider using progesterone cream.  Look for a brand that lists the amount of progesterone, and it should say “Progesterone USP” NOT “wild yam root”.   Wild Yam Root needs to be converted to  progesterone, in a lab… our bodies can’t just take wild yam and convert it.  So be aware of that.  I personally use a brand by Emerita called  Pro-Gest.  I began using it a few months ago, when my thyroid symptoms got worse… to my surprise, I found that the signs of estrogen dominance are almost identical in SEVERAL ways to hypothyroidism!  So, after being put on a small dose of synthroid, and still having the same problems, and the doctors saying I was “normal” … I decided to give progesterone a try.  In some ways my body is still adjusting so not everything is “fixed” but I have seen several things that ARE being “fixed” such as my problems sleeping at night, mood swings, tough PMS symptoms, painful periods,, menstrual migraines, (and amazingly even my gluten intolerance has gotten better, and I really don’t understand that at all but HEY I am not complaining!)

For an amazing article, check out http://www.progesteronetherapy.com/peri-menopause.html#axzz1uVAZWOx2  and it will give you a lot of really good info.  The whole site is incredibly helpful.   This article will explain more in detail about the effects of perimenopause on your body and how progesterone cream can help you.
So smile, it *will* get better! :) 

The Path of Compassion and Wisdom… e-book review

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Amazon.com: Modern Buddhism: The Path of Compassion and Wisdom – Volume 1 Sutra eBook: Geshe Kelsang Gyatso: Kindle Store.

Wow… I have always been drawn to Buddhism… the gentleness and reverence for all life… the teachings of  Buddhism, the ones I am aware of,  have always been one of the closest ones to my core being, even since I was young..  I have not, though, done an in-depth study on the subject.  Yet. That is about to change.

I have been doing some searching, soul-wise, and I suddenly came across this gem today, as if in answer to the questions of my  heart..  I have a Kindle reader (OH I LOVE my Kindle!!!) and while looking for something else, completely… I happened on this.  I felt immediately drawn to it and recognized that perhaps this is a place and a path that it’s time to investigate further, in this journey of my life.  It was one of those “things” that you just know is a nudge from Someone or Something.  When I saw that the author, an ordained monk (from the time he was 8!!) just wanted to make it freely available for everyone to read… I felt so humbled and appreciative, that this person would make these teachings available via free e-book, for anyone wanting to learn.

I sat down to read, and just the preface alone was enough to stop me in my tracks.  It touched my heart.. my soul… I just felt like I had come home, as I continued to read.  I reluctantly had to stop long enough to do the laundry for my dear family LOL and now I have to run to the store and get dog food for my dogs *sigh* and then I have to come back and … and.. life is just so busy.  But I cannot stop thinking about the words in this book and can’t wait to find a few quiet moments, to resume my thought processes and get into deep reading mode again.  The words have been with me all day.  I feel that I have come to a definitive spiritual mark on my path.


“Modern Buddhism, The Path of Compassion and Wisdom, Volume 1, Sutra” is written in a very humble, touching and loving spirit, which helps you see beyond the day to day material surface and focus on the quietly, infitely spiritual matters of the heart, soul and mind.  I would say the gentle wisdom this book has to offer is life-changing, for those who put it into practice. There are 2 more in the series. I can’t wait to delve into them. :)

If you have a Kindle.. and if you too are drawn to more spiritual things and have not quenched your thirst on the things you have found in this world so far… give this little book a try.  You have nothing to lose and so much peacefulness to gain! :)

Introduction and Encouragement This eBook Modern Buddhism – The Path of Compassion and Wisdom, in three volumes, is being distributed freely at the request of the author Geshe Kelsang Gyatso (the Kindle Store sets the minimum price at 99 cents and also additional taxes are added…

Dogs sick from toxic dog treats still reported | HULIQ

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Dogs sick from toxic dog treats still reported while FDA offers answers | HULIQ.

BOY this makes me mad!!!  Dogs are dying from these so-called “TREATS”  Stores like Wal Mart and Dollar Store… QUIT IMPORTING THESE FROM CHINA!  From other sites I have read, this goes for any type of duck treats too :/  Below is the article in its entirety from HULIQ


By Dave Masko on 2012-03-22
Dogs sick from toxic China dog treats still being reported while FDA offers answ

Imported chicken dog treats from China are still being blamed for kidney failure and even death, as dog owners nationwide are sharing their sad stories.

Dog owners Kevin and Candace Thaxton told ABC News in a TV report March 16 that “their 10-year-old pug Chansey died after eating chicken jerky dog treats made in China. In turn, this story of imported chicken dog treats sickening dogs in the U.S. continues after “the Food and Drug Administration has fielded over 530 complaints from pet owners over the past four months claiming their dogs suffered illness or death after eating jerky treats made in China,” officials told ABC News. At the same time, the ABC News report explained how “the FDA has issued three separate warnings about Chinese jerky treats in the past four years” by advising owners who give their pets the snacks to watch the dogs closely for signs of illness. In turn, ABC News did not list each of these three separate warnings. However, the FDA website includes a record of the FDA’s activity on this recent pet food issue.

Moreover, since the agency says it has yet to find a “definitive cause” for the mystery ailments, ABC News reported March 16 that “it hasn’t blamed Chinese treats for the illnesses, it hasn’t named any of the well-known American firms like Purina that sell them, and it hasn’t recalled any of the products. Dog owners and legislators are now demanding action.”

China’s toxic dog treats known since late 2011

At the same time, an ABC News TV station in Los Angeles (KABC) reported on Dec. 29, 2011 that the same thing that’s happening now in 2012 also took place just three months ago when it reported how “the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is investigating a dog treat after receiving hundreds of reports of dogs getting sick, some fatally. Over the past month, there have been more than 350 reports of dogs being sickened or dying after eating chicken jerky treats imported from China.”

In turn, the FDA stated that “it is actively investigating the matter and conducting analysis for different contaminates. However, ABC TV News in L.A. reported no results back in late December after the FFDA tested different brands and products.

Thus, the FDA stated “it still has not found any contaminants,” and why the FDA said back at the end of December “that’s why a recall of the products has not been issued.”

Thaxton dog’s death an example

These toxic chicken dog treats imported from China stated harming American dogs last year, add the FDA when sharing the latest information on the government website.

For instance, ABC News reported – in a very emotional TV report March 16 – how Kevin and Candace Thaxton’s 10-year-old pug Chansey got sick late last year.

In turn, the couple told ABC News that they “assumed at first it was simply old age. The small dog started showing symptoms of kidney failure — drinking water excessively and urinating in the house. By the time the Thaxtons got her to a veterinarian, Chansey’s kidneys had shut down and she was in extreme pain. She died two days later.”

“It was so hard. It was just devastating,” Kevin Thaxton told ABC News.

Also, the Thaxtons would go through the ordeal again just weeks later — leading them to a new theory behind Chansey’s death — when their new Pekingese-mix puppy Penny exhibited the same symptoms, finally resulting in kidney failure.

For instance, Candace Thaxton told ABC News that when she “stumbled on a Food and Drug Administration warning that there’d been ‘an increase in complaints’ about chicken jerky dog treats made in China, she says she knew immediately what had happened to her beloved dogs.”

“I grabbed the bag of treats and turned it over,” Candace said. “At first I saw it said ‘Manufactured in South Carolina’ so I thought I was safe. Then I looked harder and it said ‘Made in China’ and I just said ‘Oh no.’ ”

What’s going on with pet food safety?

The owners of a dog named “Suzie,” told Huliq during a recent interview that “we’re so worried about what she eats that we’re now restricting the usual dog treats that our Suzie gets when at coffee or food drive-ins. Everybody likes to give dogs treats, but we’re now asking where are those treats coming from?”

Also, a dog named “King” has been “real sick.” King’s owner Frankie said his dog has been ill for some time, and he now wonders if it’s “those dog snacks from China?”

Such alarming news of the possible risk to dogs comes at a time when the safety of imported food is being heavily scrutinized.

For instance, on March 15 the Centers for Disease Control reported that foods imported from other countries are to blame for dozens of recent foodborne disease outbreaks. ABC News explained that the CDC looked at outbreaks from 2005 to 2010 and concluded that 39 outbreaks and over 2,300 illnesses came from food imported into the U.S. Nearly 45 percent of the foods that caused the outbreaks came from Asia.”

In turn, the FDA says it is “actively investigating reports of illness and death and has been conducting tests on samples of the treats. An FDA spokesperson said the samples came from around the country but would not cite specific sources that provided the samples.”

FDA offers Qs and As on dog treats

Concerned dog owners can go to a new special Q and A section of its website at http://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/SafetyHealth/ProductSafetyInformation/ucm295445.htm – 12k – 2012-03-09 for specific details about these toxic dog treats from China.

For instance, this FDA “Questions and Answers” section explains when the agency first reacted to reports from dog owners about these toxic dog treats.

In 2011, FDA stated on its website that it “saw an increase in the number of complaints it received of dog illnesses associated with consumption of chicken jerky products imported from China. FDA previously issued a cautionary warning regarding chicken jerky products to consumers in September 2007 and a Preliminary Animal Health Notification in December of 2008. The number of complaints being received dropped off during the latter part of 2009 and most of 2010.

However in 2011, FDA once again started seeing the number of complaints rise to the levels of concern that prompted release of our earlier warnings.

Since the issuance of the CVM Update on November 18, 2011, the agency has received numerous additional complaints regarding chicken jerky products, the FDA added.

As for what products are involved, the FDA explains: “The cautionary update specifically refers to chicken jerky products that are imported from China. These dried chicken jerky products, intended for dogs, may also be sold as tenders, strips or treats.”

FDA explains signs of illness being reported

Dogs that have become ill show “signs that may be associated with chicken jerky products include decreased appetite; decreased activity; vomiting; diarrhea, sometimes with blood; increased water consumption and/or increased urination. These signs may occur within hours to days of feeding the products. Laboratory tests may indicate kidney problems, including Fanconi-like syndrome. Although many dogs appear to recover, some reports to the FDA have involved dogs that have died. FDA continues to investigate the problem and its origin. Some of the illnesses reported may be the result of causes other than eating chicken jerky,” stated the FDA.

Since 2007, FDA also explained how it’s been actively investigating the cause of illness in pets reported in association with the consumption of chicken jerky products. For example, the FDA website noted how “samples have been tested by FDA laboratories, by the Veterinary Laboratory Response Network (Vet-LRN), and by other animal health diagnostic laboratories in the U.S for multiple chemical and microbiological contaminants.”

In turn, the FDA stated how product samples were tested for Salmonella, metals, furans, pesticides, antibiotics, mycotoxins, rodenticides, nephrotoxins (such as aristolochic acid, maleic acid, paraquat, ethylene glycol, diethylene glycol, toxic hydrocarbons, melamine and related triazines) and were screened for other chemicals and poisonous compounds. DNA verification was conducted on these samples to confirm the presence of poultry in the treats.

The FDA stated, for example, how “samples have also been submitted for nutritional composition (which includes glycerol concentrations), vitamin D excess and enterotoxin analysis. Some samples from recent cases (2011-2012) have been submitted for multiple tests and we are awaiting results. More samples are in the process of being collected for testing.”

At the same time, the FDA stated that the “results of the testing” are from “samples collected from all over the United States have been tested for a wide variety of substances and to date, scientists have not been able to determine a definitive cause for the reported illnesses.”

Meanwhile, the FDA website explained how it looked for “metal contamination” in these chicken jerky products produced in China. “FDA’s previous testing of chicken jerky product samples did not show toxic levels of metals. In addition, results from March 2012 toxic metal analyses, which included tests for heavy metals, have again shown samples of chicken jerky products to be negative for toxic metals.”

No specific brands recalled by FDA

Also, of concern, say dog owners, is the FDA admission that “no specific products have been recalled because a definitive cause has not been determined. The FDA continues to actively investigate the problem and its origin.”

In turn, if the FDA identifies the cause, the agency said it will “take appropriate action and notify the public.”

As for the question from dog owners about why aren’t these products being taken off the market, the FDA website stated: “There is nothing preventing a company from conducting a voluntary recall. It is important to understand that unless a contaminant is detected and we have evidence that a product is adulterated, we are limited in what regulatory actions we can take. The regulations don’t allow for products to be removed based on complaints alone. This is an ongoing investigation and FDA will notify the public if a recall is initiated. Currently, FDA continues to urge pet owners to use caution with regard to chicken jerky products.”

FDA guidance on feeding chicken jerky treats to dogs

According to the FDA website about this specific issue, “chicken jerky products should not be substituted for a balanced diet and are intended to be fed occasionally in small quantities.”

In turn, the FDA is advising consumers who choose to feed their dogs chicken jerky products to watch their dogs closely for any or all of the following signs that may occur within hours to days of feeding the products:

— decreased appetite

— decreased activity

— vomiting

— diarrhea, sometimes with blood

— increased water consumption

— increased urination

Also, the FDA stated that “if the dog shows any of these signs, stop feeding the chicken jerky product. Owners should consult their veterinarian if signs are severe or persist for more than 24 hours. Blood tests may indicate kidney failure (increased urea nitrogen and creatinine). Urine tests may indicate Fanconi-like syndrome (increased glucose).”

In addition, the FDA guidance states: “If your pet has experienced signs of illness, please retain the opened package and remaining pieces of the chicken jerky product that are in the original packaging. It is possible that your samples will be collected for testing. If your product samples are collected, please be sure to provide the FDA official with all of the sample that you have. The extensive testing that is being conducted may require multiple pieces from the package. It is also possible that a toxicant may be present in some of the samples in the package, but not all. We may be able to get better or more accurate testing results with a larger sample size.”

Additional information on what happens when a problem is reported can be found at the following link:
http://www.fda.gov/Safety/ReportaProblem/QuestionsandAnswersProblemReporting/ucm056069.htm4
FDA responsible for dog food safety

Also, according to the FDA website about pet food safety, this government organization is tasked to “regulate that can of cat food, bag of dog food, or box of dog treats or snacks in your pantry. The FDA’s regulation of pet food is similar to that for other animal foods. The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA) requires that all animal foods, like human foods, be safe to eat, produced under sanitary conditions, contain no harmful substances, and be truthfully labeled.”

At the same time, ABC News reported March 16 that “the FDA issued its first warning about chicken jerky treats from China in 2007, in response to the first wave of consumer complaints, and then issued a second in 2008. When the FDA issued a third warning in late 2011, based on another increase in complaints that year, it asked consumers to report any other purported incidents directly to the agency. Since that update, hundreds of dog owners have come forward to share their concerns.”

For more information, check out the FDA website at http://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/Products/AnimalFoodFeeds/PetFood/default.htm

Image source of a dog named “King” with owner Frankie who said his dog has been ill for some time, and he now wonders if it’s “those dog snacks from China?” Photo by Dave Masko

How to help your dog in the early stages of parvo

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We recently lost a dear dog to parvo…she was only 6 months old and I loved her dearly.  Her name was Mishka.  She had all the signs of parvo but I was not familiar enough with the symptoms to catch it in time to help her.  She has a sister, named Daisy… a day or two later, Daisy began showing the same symptoms.

With parvo, it is IMPERATIVE that at the very very first little bitty sign of ANYTHING not exactly right, or just a little off, with your dog… you must act immediately.  Of course the ideal thing is to take your dog to the vet right away.  At the first sign of them seeming “depressed” or lethargic… not interested in their food or treats… something is wrong.  If you wait  until they don’t eat, and begin vomiting, then you are in a race against time… and it happens very, very quickly.

The symptoms and stages are: 

1) listlessness, depression, just not seeming to be themselves

2) not eating

3) not drinking… vomiting everything back up

4) bloody diarrhea

parvo attacks their insides, making them bleed, sometimes even their heart.  You may notice a foul odor… from what I have read, this is what causes that odor.  They can literally drown.

If, for some reason, you are unable to get to a vet… let me share with you what we did for Daisy… and it saved her life.  We have one grave, with our dear pup Mishka, instead of two.  I read this online and wasted no time in trying it… and it worked.  I believe it only worked because I already knew what to look for and just as soon as I saw Daisy showing the same signs, I IMMEDIATELY implemented this.  Otherwise it would not have worked, if we had waited a day, maybe even hours, longer.  We had been watching her closely for signs, just in case, and we caught it within the first 24 hours.  Also, Daisy is a big dog… she is a mix of pyrenees and australian shepherd, with a few other things… so she is quite large.  At six months she has surpassed her mother!  I don’t know if a big dog stands a better chance of surviving?  This may or may not be a factor.  I only know that parvo can take down any dog and you must act quickly.  Again I stress… take your pet to the vet if you at all can.  The sooner the better, at the first signs of anything being wrong.

With that said…. this is what we did that saved our puppy.  I did a lot of research online to try and find what we could do to help her right away… and from what I gleaned off a few websites…. this popped up over and over so I felt we were on the right track.  We used Pepto Bismol… Pedialyte… and a turkey baster syringe.  Amazing that these three items saved her life!!  I also mixed up some beef broth to give her, so she would get some nutrition during the time she wouldn’t eat.

With the first note of listlessness and disinterest in her food…. we gave her one tblsp of Pepto Bismul with the turkey baster.  I held her while my sweetheart of a husband helped me…. he shot the pepto down her with the baster while I held her still and her mouth up.  This is to prevent the dog from throwing up, having diarrhea, and losing precious fluid and electrolytes.  Next we poured some pedialyte into a bowl, and since she would not drink on her own, we used the baster/syringe (we used the same kind that comes with the injectable marinade, and took the needle thingy off, just using the other part to pull up the liquid and shoot it down her) and we gave her half a small bottle (it came in a pack of four) of that.  There were a couple of times that she burped, about 20 minutes later, and sounded like she would throw up… but thanks to the pepto she didn’t.

We waited a couple hours and repeated the process.  A couple hours later, we did it again, but this time I mixed up a little beef broth for her, and we administered that to her as well.  By now it was getting late and she was in the house with us, so we just let her sleep on the couch, her favorite place :) bless her heart.   I got up several times to check on her during the night… she was sleeping well and peacefully so I waited until morning to give her anymore.

Imagine my surprise when morning came… she seemed better… interested in her water and sniffing for food!  She went and drank some water, on her own, which she had stopped doing the day before.  We were thrilled!!  We were going to give her a little more pedialyte but she seemed hungry.  We tested the waters and took out a tiny piece of bologna to see what her reaction would be.  She gobbled it up!!  We were so happy!!

We let her outside… she ran, played with her mom, and “gallumphed” all over the yard!! A few hours later she was chasing squirrels and (yuck) caught one.  So we figured, if she was up to some squirrel… a little bologna definitely would not hurt her!!

We watched her all day for any signs of the disease… she played… drank water…ate bologna and well, anything else that we would put in front of her, lol… she was back to herself.  We continued to watch her closely over the next few days and I was just amazed at how quickly she bounced back.  I just wish I had realized in time what was wrong with Mishka so I could have saved her too… but her spirit lives on in her sister.  She will never be forgotten. 

As I said… the vet is always best.  But there are instances sometimes when people can’t get to a vet, or just don’t have the money, or even transportation… and that is why I am sharing this success story with you… so that in that event, a dog doesn’t have to die for lack of resources.  Always watch your beloved pets closely… and when you notice a change in them, act immedately.  They are not like people.  People can be depressed, not feel like eating, etc., but its not always a serious thing… usually it isn’t.  We get headaches… we have bad days… colds… etc… we usually snap out of it.  Dogs are different… if they are not eating.. laying around… not outside chasing the cat… then something is very very wrong and you must act quickly.  Don’t wait to see what else they do or don’t do, because chances are if it is a big enough deal that they don’t want to eat… then it is pretty serious.

I will post some pictures here soon of our beloved Daisy.  She’s currently outside digging holes and chasing squirrels. :)  Every time I look at her… I am thankful she is still here… and amazed.

Here are pictures of our sweet Daisy girl :) 

Using Lingerie to Spice It Up in the Bedroom!

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Women love lingerie… and men love their women to be WEARING lingerie. Both sides win. Women get to feel sexy, like a goddess… and men get to LOOK at their women like a goddess. Who doesn’t want that!? :)

There are so many types of lingerie to choose from… sweet, innocent, almost angelic… to bolder, even naughty.

Which type is for you?

What if I said… all of it?

First things first… don’t be afraid to step a little out of your comfort zone. A lady who is shy, quiet and meek on the outside can turn into a naughty mistress in the bedroom! Trying new things and new styles of lingerie can be just the thing to spice up a romantic encounter… whether your relationship is still new, or maybe you’ve been together for years. Sex between people who love each other is a beautiful thing… don’t be afraid to get a little adventurous. Men crave that adventure and fantasy… and you can be his fantasy woman, just by changing a few things you wear in the bedroom.

Teddies, baby dolls and bustiers are always a hit. They are always sexy, and always fashionable. Anything with garters is especially pleasing, and don’t forget to add the thigh-hi’s. If you’ve never experimented with these before, I highly recommend them. It makes you feel sexy underneath, and if you give your guy a hint of “what you’re wearing” … it will drive him crazy all day, thinking about seeing you wearing it tonight! If you doubt what I’m saying… just try it! ;)

When shopping for thigh-hi’s, if you plan to use them with garters, I recommend buying the ones that are especially for use with them. Sometimes the elastic-banded ones don’t come out looking the way we like and make a tight roll across the top. Thigh-hi’s that are made for wearing with garters are not tight on the leg (the garters keep them up) and will present a more attractive appearance.

There are many materials and fabrics. Leather (pretty pricey but worth it), vinyl, fishnet, lace, satin. It all works!

Accessories are always good so don’t underestimate them. Don’t forget to add things like feathers and edible massage oils. These really add a touch of hotness that both of you will enjoy! Lacy gloves… jewelry… heels… go all out and he will go crazy with desire for you!

Even if you feel out of your element… you may even feel a little strange, because it feels so unlike you… but give it a try. Be his fantasy girl. Even if you feel like your body type isn’t perfect, or if you wonder what he would want… you might be pleasantly surprised. Men just love sexy. Period! And when their woman is being sexy just for them, that’s even better!

One thing I would like to mention here… a woman who FEELS sexy… IS sexy. It’s a confidence thing. If you’re strutting around all day wearing something super sexy underneath, it makes you feel sexy and special. Which would make you feel more like a vibrant sexy woman… a lacy black bra and matching lace panties… or granny panties? ;)

A woman who feels sexy on the inside can’t help but exude it on the outside to others. People notice. It increases her sense of self, her femininity… her sexuality. It’s a way we can celebrate being the sexy woman that we are. Every woman has sex appeal… sometimes she just doesn’t know how to let it out. Wearing a little sexy something underneath can help bring it out, in a subtle but sure way.

So go ahead… have fun with it! Try something a little out of the ordinary and feel like a goddess! Make a sexy, romantic memory that both of you will never forget. :)



My thoughts on relationships…and how to keep one

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To my loyal readers… I have missed you!  Sorry that I have been gone for so long… I have been through quite a few things over the past year.  Some good… some bad… some sad but turned into better.  I logged into my blog for the first time last  night in, I guess a year… and found that I still had readers… I’ve had a few thousand hits… wow!   So I decided to get back to blogging.  Thanks for reading.  :)

One thing this brown eyed girl has learned… is that you are never too old to learn anything.  AND just when you think you have it all figured out… uh oh.  That’s a sure sign you don’t!!   Don’t take ANYTHING for granted.  Especially your relationships.  Calm skies can turn into nightmarish tornadoes with no warning.  At least… no warnings that you really pay attention to.  I learned this the hard way.  And no, I am not talking about real tornadoes… although we sure have had enough of those!!   Speaking of… I want to convey my sincerest sympathies to those who have been affected by the deadly tornadoes lately.  My heart just goes out to you all.  :'(

Today it’s on my mind to talk a little about… relationships.  Of all sorts.  There is one deadly ingredient, that will choke any relationship quicker than anything.  That thing is… control.  It’s a nasty, 7-letter word, that is as sneaky as hell.  It hides in all kinds of disguises… love… concern… religion.  Those are the main three where it likes to rear its ugly head.  It slowly chokes you, and those around you… and by the time you wake up to see the damage… the storm has ripped through and you are left wondering what just happened.  Many times, those who are doing the controlling don’t even recognize it, because they have been slowly and silently controlled all their lives too.  It’s a vicious cycle.  It takes a major upheaval sometimes to give a wake up call.

So what do we do?  First of all… just STOP.  Stop trying to be God.  In effect, that’s what we do.  We think that if we don’t run things (which usually involves running PEOPLE, we just don’t look at it that deeply yet) who will?  SOMEBODY that knows what they’re doing has to tell all the good people what to do.  What to think.  What to believe.  When they’re right or wrong.  And as a devoutly religious person, I was really good at it.  I thought I was doing what was good for the people I love and only until much later did I realize I was doing just the opposite… turning them away.  My world crashed around me.  And I realized I had to do some soul searching on my own self.  I was so busy “condemning sin” and making sure everybody around me lived the right way… I didn’t even see it myself.  When I look back on things in the past in my relationships… I shudder.  I must have been so horrible to be around and I didn’t even know it.  And that led me to question some other things in my own belief system, and do some spring cleaning on my heart.  I needed to make some long overdue changes in my own life.

Control is something that we have no business messing with.  We want to control something?  We want to control someone?  Let’s focus on controlling ourselves!  And leave it there.  If we can keep our own self control then we’ll be doing great.  But controlling others… even subtle manipulations for “all the right reasons” … has to become a thing of the past.  And if you think about it.. it’s so stressful, worrying what everyone else is doing!  Just let it go.  You cannot imagine the feeling of freedom it brings, to not have to be in control of everything.  Let people police themselves.  If you’re worried about the state of their soul… well, you know what?  It’s their soul.  Not yours.  Let them deal with it in their own way… and you just worry about you.  That is a full time job… I know first hand.  My plate is full enough just dealing with my own life.

Today I am a new person.  I am a free spirit.  No one tells me what to believe, or do, or think… and I don’t tell anyone else.  I don’t follow the leader blindly… today, I am my own leader.   I follow no one… I lead no one.  But you are more than welcome to walk beside me.  I found out that the greatest gift you can give anyone is the gift of acceptance.  Everyone wants to know they are loved and accepted just as they are.  No matter what they watch… or do in their private time… or the words they speak… we all just want to be accepted and loved for who we are.  And if those closest to us can’t accept that… can’t accept us for who we are… then we have to make changes.  Hopefully if someone truly loves you, they will have their own awakening… do their own soul searching… and meet you where you are… but if that loved one is unable to accept the truth of who you are, of what you need for acceptance… then that needs to be addressed, and decisions need to be made.   But this must be discussed… don’t make the mistake of just thinking that person would not listen to you.  If they love you… they will listen.  Give them a chance to rise to the occasion before you make the choice to leave… and then take it from there.   I was fortunate, in that the one I love was able to talk with me, and we made some needed changes in acceptance and understanding, for both of us. After taking a long hard look at how I had made others feel… I understood their viewpoint… and I realized they needed a heartfelt apology from me too, not just them.  Yes they had made mistakes, but I had to acknowledge that so had I!  And how would I have felt in their shoes?  These are tough questions we have to ask ourselves, and they are not easy to look at, especially when we feel the answers present themselves to our heart.

I will never make the same  mistake again of thinking I have to control… on any level… what someone else does.  And I have to say that since we have come to that understanding.. we have both felt more liberated, at ease… and our relationship is the best it has ever been, in 13 years.  I will say, this is my marital relationship.  It’s like we are dating all over again… only better than it ever was.  The change has been unbelievable!  And I am grateful that we had that opportunity. I would recommend it to anyone.  A little love and acceptance goes a long way.  When there is love and acceptance, there is no longer room for control.  

There is a song by Meredith Brooks called “It Don’t Get Better” and the song asks this question:  “Do you want to be happy, or do you want to be right?”

You know what?  Heck with control…

I want to be happy.

And so… these are my deep thoughts this morning.

Have a great day!!  :)

Hugs to all of you…

Amy


Brown Eyed Girls Gotta Blog! :D

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206208_402553983137972_2018772436_n   Click here for my streaming playlist – listen while you read!

    or  just “Pop Out” my below player.  Great music from the 60’s through today! :)

      (right-click and open in new tab or window.)

Standalone player

HEY and welcome to this little blog of mine!  Ok, this is your last chance.  Are you *sure* you want to venture on in? hehee  Just kidding.  It’s safe.  Mostly. *rubs hands together with glee* LOL!!  :)  There is ALL KINDS of stuff in here… from recipes to poetry, fun stuff to animal activism… whatever I’m in the mood to post, pretty much! 

So… that was your last chance.  Now you’re hooked ;)  you HAVE to look around. :D

 ALSO… I love to write poetry… if that’s an interest of yours,  please feel free to give my poetry a read. I have a lot :) and also a few e-books that I have written, on Scribd, which you can access at this link: http://www.scribd.com/AmyMeridethSwanson   The first one is a collection of my various poetry… about love, loss, life, and all the in-between.  The name of it is “Soul Expressions… Poetry for Thought.” The artwork on the cover is an original design, done by me.  The second one, and the one closest to my heart, is “Reflections of Nature… A Selection of Peaceful Poetry for Tranquil Moments” and it’s chock full of haiku, tanka, choka and free verse poetry.

OK… let’s get started!!  I hope you enjoy my blog!  Grab a cup of coffee (__)D or tea… or milk… whatever your choice… and come on in!!  :)

*hugs*

Amy