Wednesday, July 3, 2013

The Answer is You!

Climate change is definitely a subject that is front and center, and with good reason. I just read a report that May was the third warmest on record for the World (in the past 180 years) and I have glanced at my own area's June #'s with the same result. We are definitely getting hotter.

In Southern California, we have the added issue of the least amount of rainfall since they began recording 150 years ago. The combination makes for extremely dry vegetation in the local mountains with a wild fire season that will be tough. Warming global temperatures are also being blamed for the severe weather patterns that are occurring, at least here in North America. We have witnessed Hurricane Sandy, the incredible strength and multitude of tornadoes, and flooding in so many places including our neighbors to the North. Calgary is under water and the Stampede is threatened with cancellation. The list of severe weather conditions goes on and on.

So, while the politicians play with the issue, we really need to start doing what we can. Many think this problem is overwhelming, and often ask themselves, what can I do that will really make a difference? You are much more powerful than you know. One huge way that we can help the problem is with our buying decisions. You vote everyday with your pocketbook. Every time you buy something you are consuming energy, the energy that was needed to make that product. When you buy American-made products, you know that there have been very stringent guidelines on how that product was made and the pollution that was produced. When you buy products from other countries, we do not know how much pollution was produced and what kind of environmental protection those manufacturers have in place. And, how many of us buy products on a whim? Moving forward, we really need to buy only what we need. That will be a hard one. But...the choice is ours.  

I also looked at several lists for other ideas on what we can do to make a difference; drive less, walk or bicycle more, recycle, buy energy efficient cars and light bulbs, buy locally grown groceries, travel by plane less (air travel is a huge amount of carbon footprint), eat less meat and dairy (cows make tons of methane gas), and the list goes on.

As a corporate citizen, these issues have been on the top of my mind for many years. derma e® has been recycling when it wasn't fashionable. When the company was small, I personally took all our scrap paper, etc., to the local recycling facility. Now we have large bins for all our recyclable waste. derma e® uses recyclable packaging. We have been buying wind energy certificates for years to offset all our electrical use in our distribution center and manufacturing facility. The manufacturing facility is unique in that our boiler (used to warm our kettles to compound the products) is also electric while most labs have a gas boiler. We also have policies in place to turn off all electrical equipment when not in use and we have installed sensor switches to turn off lights when someone is not in the room.

This may seem like an overwhelming challenge but even the most obvious eco-friendly actions can make a difference. One of my favorite quotes is truly applicable here, "You must be the change you want to see in the world." Mahatma Ghandi.

Yours in health,
Dr. Linda Miles, D.O.M.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Celebrating My Birthday On Earth Day

I have always been honored that April 22nd, my birthday, became Earth Day. I am very connected to Mother Earth and appreciate the myriad of complex relationships that make up the multitude of ecosystems that I have had the opportunity to explore.  

This year, I have decided to turn my special day into a special week and hike a tiny piece of the Pacific Crest Trail (Mexico to Canada, a total of 2,600 miles). I will be leaving this Sunday from Walker Pass and backpacking to Kennedy Meadows (52 miles total according to the trail map). I did some backpacking when I was younger and wanted to make sure I carried the lightest pack possible. So after pouring over backpacking reviews, I am carrying an Osprey Arial Pack and using a Mountain Hardware tent. Both are a little over 2 lbs each. All of my equipment was selected with weight considerations in mind. I carefully went through the rest of my list either cutting items or opting for the lighter alternative. For example, using a plastic spoon opposed to a metal camping spoon just to save a couple of
precious ounces. 

When I started to get my first aid kit ready, I had major issues deciding on what was really "necessary". I knew I wanted derma e® Skinbiotics® Treatment Oil (with Tea Tree and Oregano Oils) for its antibacterial and anti-fungal protection as well as to calm any insect bites I might get. Breathing these oils also helps keep my upper respiratory tract healthy and as I'm just recovering from a nasty cold that my husband gave me, this was essential. Next, I wanted to take the derma e® Intensive Therapy Foot Crème to soothe and help heal my feet after a long day but I couldn't justify even a couple ounces. The Anti-Ache™ Crème was another consideration but again those ounces were just too much to add. 

As for skin care, I wanted to take my Age-Defying Night Crème with Astaxanthin and Pycnogenol® to help keep my skin moisturized and healthy but realized I probably needed to wear an SPF if I was going to be in the sun 10-12 hours a day.  So, I am taking the Age-Defying Moisturizer SPF 15 with Astaxanthin and Green Tea. I also wanted to take my Tea Tree and E Face & Body Wash to protect against body odor and because of its anti-bacterial benefits, but again I had to choose an oatmeal lavender travel bar that weighs next to nothing.   

Well, my decisions have been sound ones and at the end of the day my pack with food and 5 liters of water (10 lbs) weighs just under 40 lbs. I'm still debating about a novel I'd like to take for the afternoon breaks. I am so looking forward to immersing myself in Nature and hope that the week will be a great salve for my body, mind and spirit.  

I hope your Earth Day is special too.
Yours in Health,
Dr. Linda Miles, D.O. M.                

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Spring is in the Air

It seems like summer here in California with dry, hot weather, while in the Northeast, many are still in winter mode with freezing temperatures. Yet, despite what it seems like, spring is just around the corner.

March 20th, the day of the vernal equinox, is the official first day of spring. Spring is a time of renewal in nature and many of us also practice the "spring cleaning" ritual. Additionally, spring reminds us that summer is just around the corner, and that means shorts and bathing suit weather. Oh, I can hear the groans over the Internet now. Yes, we need to lose a couple of pounds and get rid of those nasty spider veins. Losing weight doesn't have to be a horrendous project though. Here are a couple easy tips: 

1.)  Do count calories to help you lose weight. It is recommended that you stay under 1200 calories a day. Be aware that processed foods have the highest amount of calories as do breads, tortillas and other foods that we consider "carbs".  Dairy is also usually high in calories.

2.)  Drink an 8 oz. glass of water 5-10 minutes before meals.  This will give you the feeling that you are full and you will eat less. Also, always get up from the table when you are just satiated, not when you are full.

3.)  Eat many small meals throughout the day to keep your metabolism going; DO NOT SKIP MEALS. Of course, breakfast is the most important. You need to consume protein at breakfast so that you do not get hungry mid-morning (oatmeal with dried fruits and nuts is an ideal breakfast).  And, if you skip meals, you will eat more than you want at the next meal because your body tries to "catch up".

4.)  Drink 4-6 glasses of water a day to help flush and cleanse the body.  

Now about those spider veins: there is a solution for these too.  derma e® has just reformulated our Clear Vein® Crème to include a new patented ingredient called Venocin.  Venocin is an extract of Horse Chestnut that is standardized to deliver 90% Escins for topical application. Escins are a mix of Saponins known to strengthen capillaries and veins, and improve blood circulation. Clear Vein® Crème also contains an assortment of herbs known to support capillaries, veins, blood flow and inflammation in general such as Yarrow, Gingko, Tao Ren (Peach Kernal extract), Arnica and of course our hero, Pycnogenol®.  Pycnogenol® is a super antioxidant that specifically targets the capillaries to reduce blood leakage (spider veins are leaking blood) and encourage fluid pick-up.  Clear Vein® Crème needs to be used at least twice a day and you will see your spider veins diminish over a 4-8 week period.  I have been using this formula on my face for sun damaged blood vessels and am seeing good results ( in only 3+ weeks). 

Enjoy spring and all that it brings: longer days, flowers, green grass, baby animals, and a brighter attitude. And, rest assured, you will also be ready for summer!

Yours in health,

Dr. Linda Miles, L.Ac., D.O.M.