WHY I DON’T EAT MEAT

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Although this topic might not be directly related to hair, it is directly related to health and with good health springs forth good hair. I’ve been getting a lot of questions regarding why I’ve made the decision to stop eating meat so I thought I’d share my reasons in this post.

I’ve actually never been a big fan of eating meat, so it was quite easy for me to remove it completely from my diet when I became consciously aware of the impact it was having on my health and the environment. In my quest to living a healthy lifestyle, I’ve learnt that having toxic foods such as meat and processed foods in my diet was preventing my body and mind from functioning optimally. So after years of personal growth I finally decided to cut meat out of my diet, and one main reason is that It’s almost impossible to live a wholesome life if you are carrying around loads of toxins and drugs in your body, which is what conventional meat is full of.

Our food today is nothing compared to what our ancestors ate in their days when meat was hard to come by and you had to go hunt for it. Most of the foods we eat today, especially meat, have been extremely depleted of all vital nutrients and minerals that our body needs for full vitality as result of modern agricultural practices and factory farming. Our meat consumption has also risen tremendously which is why there are more sicknesses and diseases today than ever before. We consume cows that are confined in CAFO’s, short for Confined Animal Feeding Operations or feed lots, where animals such as cows are fed foods they aren’t designed to eat like GMO grains and soy. Cows are designed to graze on grass in the open sun, but they’re often cut of from sunlight and crammed together in stalls where they’re forced to stand all day in the mess of their own feces and with no room to even turn themselves. There have even been reports of cows that die of diseases, but are then recycled and used as feed for other cows, a direct violation of natural laws. But companies have money to make so they don’t really care about natural laws. It’s unfortunate but the least that can be done is to make sure our health is not the victim of the money making business.

There are also countless innocent animals that are being, tortured, pumped with drugs, and then gruesomely killed for the satisfaction of our consumption. But yet, we seem to justify this inhumanity with the ideology that it is a good source of protein; which although true, protein can be found in almost all fruits, vegetables and nuts. Humans don’t actually need meat to survive, we can thrive alone on plant based foods that grow right from the earth.

If eating your pet is unacceptable why should eating other animals be acceptable? Who determines which animals should live with us in peace and which ones are only good to be eaten? I think more people would at least cut back their consumption of meat if they actually took the time to research the conditions in which conventional farm animals are raised.

Another thing to realize is that all life emits energy both good and bad. The energy that emits from tortured animals are being transferred to us when we eat meat and it becomes part of our energy and who we are, although we may not be aware of this. That’s why years of eating meat unconsciously has made many unaware of the effects of their habit. It seems perfectly normal and it’s hard for them to eliminate eating meat without much of a good reason apart from its taste. But perhaps my reasons will help.  I believe that the more meat you eat the sicker you become emotionally, spiritually and physically. I don’t know about you but I want to be nutritionally full not sick.

Along with the compromised morality and poor ethics that we have for animals, there have been several studies which conclude that excessive meat eating can promote various cancers. 1

I have stopped eating meat for almost 6 months now, and I feel a lot more revived than I did before.  I totally respect the decision of those of you who eat meat, but I would urge you to at least look into ways you can reduce the negative impact that excessive meat consumption can have on your health and the environment by making better choices. If you just can’t cut out meat entirely, choosing organic and grass-fed sources of meat or even just reducing the frequency to which you consume meats helps; every little decision helps. Being a vegetarian is what works for me and hopefully it will inspire others who are starting a healthy journey to improve their health as well. Once you begin to appreciate all forms of life, life will become more meaningful and rewarding. You will begin to view the world differently and see things from a more holistic perspective. The well being of all life forms will also begin to matter more to you. Knowledge is key and it’s never ending, so continue to keep yourself informed about what you eat and make improvements. You and the world around you will begin to change for the better because as the saying goes, YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT!

1 www.iflscience.com/health-and-medicine/possible-link-between-red-meat-consumption-and-increased-cancer-risk-identified

 

Could adding these 4 foods to your diet be better than any hair product on the market?

What if I told you that I foimagesund a solution that can reduce major time and heartache about your hair problems? Would you buy it? I sure would. I remember when I was in the beginning stages of my natural hair journey, and I became a big fan of buying various creams, oils, shampoos and conditioners; with the hopes of growing my hair long and healthy. Call me a product junkie if you will, but I was determined to discover a “quick-fix solution” for my hair.

I tried tips from every source you could imagine such as articles, tutorials, product reviews, you name it. Nothing seemed to work. After all the trial and error, I later realized that “there are no quick fixes to hair problems.” As I continued to do my research I finally found the cause of my problems. It wasn’t what I was putting on my hair, it was what I was putting into my body. I learned that living a healthy lifestyle was the ultimate secret that I had been missing all along. I had to revamp my diet. So I started by taking out the bad foods and replaced them with wholesome foods to create an internal environment that allowed me to replenish my system which in turn fixed my hair problems.

Foods that contained these ingredients were on my “bad” list, and included:

  1. Wheat, especially highly processed GMO wheat: Provides very little nutrients for the hair, skin or body. Wheat contains high levels of genetically modified organisms (GMO’s). Studies show that they change our genetic make-up and are a cause to many of the serious chronic health problems that are faced today [1]. Consuming wheat in excess also increases the body’s insulin levels by converting the wheat into sugar and storing that sugar as fat [2]. This fat is then stored in the liver, pancreas, kidneys and other organs that can potentially lead to the risk of cancer and other illnesses. [3]
  1. Pasteurized Dairy: Studies have shown that Grass fed dairy can provide the body with a wide range of beneficial nutrients, vitamins, enzymes and good bacteria needed for a healthy body and healthy hair.[4] However, when it is pasteurized (like most dairy products), all these important components become diminished, and left behind is a product with little to no nutritional value. On top of that, most dairy products come from conventionally grown cattle that have been fed loads of antibiotics and various chemicals, not to mention the inhumane conditions they’re raised in.
  1. Processed foods: These foods contain trans fats and many toxic ingredients according to research,[6] so any serious natural beauty should avoid as much as possible. Most processed foods contain heavily refined ingredients and artificial additives that are detrimental for growing healthy long hair, and are linked to a wide host of serious diseases. [5]
  1. Vegetable oils: Research shows that your level of consumption of oils such as canola, safflower, peanut, soybean, corn and other highly processed oils, can determine your risk of degenerative diseases.[7] These oils are genetically modified and aren’t designed for heat.[8] It oxidizes very easily when heat is present; causing the oil to become rancid. This is due to their high levels of polyunsaturated omega 6 fatty acids that also increase your risk of heart diseases.[7] Unfortunately these unhealthy oils have become dominant in our western diets and people are consuming way too much omega 6 fatty acids. For ideal health the ratio of omega 3’s vs. omega 6’s should be 1:1, whereas most of these oil have unbalanced ration of 50:1.[8]

Now that I’ve explained the ingredients on my “bad list”, I replaced the above foods with these nutritious substitutes:

  1. Fruits and Vegetables: This should be the bulk of your diet. Incorporating a rainbow of fruits and vegetables everyday is ideal if you want healthy skin, healthy hair and a healthy body overall. Fruits and vegetables are packed with essential nutrients, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and so much more.[9] Try to consume as much greens as possible since they contain plenty of chlorophyll which has tremendous detoxification effects. [9] I recommend drinking a green smoothie every morning. It is a great way to get your daily intake of fruits and vegetables and will keep your body functioning in top shape. Opt for organic as much as you can to minimize the dangers of pesticides, genetically modified foods and other dangerous substances.
  2. Healthy fats: Wholesome fats such as olive oil, raw organic palm oil, organic coconut oil, flaxseeds, nuts and fish are all good fats for your body. [8] In relation to hair and skin, the omega fatty acids in these healthy fats help in the production of sebum, a natural lubricant for the skin and hair and also helps build a healthy scalp.
  3. Whey Protein Concentrate: Organic, grass fed whey made from unpasteurized milk is the most highly digestive form of protein you can consume according to research. Not only is it great for building muscle and burning fat after a workout, but it contains all the essential amino acids your cells need to make glutathione (the most powerful antioxidant) and to protect cells from free radicles (which causes cell damage). [12 ] When choosing whey make sure it is Concentrate and NOT Isolate. Isolate is acidic, deficient in natural vitamins and minerals through processing, and is non-soluble in water; making it very difficult for your body to absorb the little nutrients left behind.
  4. Matcha Tea: Has been shown to be one of the most beneficial teas we can drink. It has an extremely high  amount of antioxidants that surpasses green tea by 100 times. [13] Matcha tea enhances your immune system, neutralizes free radicles, increases energy, cleanses your body from toxic metals, and has a natural calming effect that can help reduce stress. It’s also a distressing agent, and as we know, the more stress we have the more likely it is for our hair to fall out. I drink this every morning to start my day off with an extra boost of  immune defence and energy.

I hope my information will help all you naturals and non-naturals who may be interested in finding long-term solutions for your hair. Analyzing and making changes to your diet in combination with exercising and following common procedures in caring for your hair such as finger detangling, co-washing/shampooing, moisturizing and sealing, go a long way in growing beautiful hair. If you are looking to improve the health of your hair, then start by improving the health of your body and in return it will begin to show on your outer appearance. Make better choices and be smart about the foods you consume. There are many food associations and manufacturers who care about their profits more than the health of their consumers, so be conscious and take control over your own body. You deserve it.

Here are some sources every serious natural who is conscious about their diet should be following:

Sources
1   http://gmo.mercola.com/
2  http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/07/05/other-nonwheat-grains-can-also-hurt-your-health.aspx
3  http://www.lef.org/Magazine/2011/10/Wheat-The-Unhealthy-Whole-Grain/Page-01
4  http://www.mercola.com/article/milk/no-milk.htm
5  http://authoritynutrition.com/9-ways-that-processed-foods-are-killing-people/
6  http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/12/30/worst-food-ingredients.aspx
7  http://wellnessmama.com/2193/never-eat-vegetable-oil/
8  http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/08/31/trans-fat-saturated-fat.aspx
9  http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/preventing-and-reversing-cancer-naturally-anticancer-
10http://www.thenourishinggourmet.com/2014/01/the-health-benefits-of-naturally-fermented-foods.html
11 http://kimberlysnyder.com/blog/2012/03/29/how-to-reduce-yeast-infections/
12http://proteinpowder.mercola.com/Miracle-Whey-Protein.html
13http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/07/03/green-tea-benefits.aspx

Can these 3 simple detangling tips be the secret to retaining hair length?

I’m sure when it comenatural-hair-madnesss to detangling many of us can relate to the constant fight we undergo each week when wash day approaches. As you look fiercely in the mirror knowing the obstacle you are about to face, you sigh and say to yourself “Another day and another fight with the enemy.” After you’ve successfully conquered those overly matted tangles and knots, you realize that you’ve left behind a huge fluff of hair the size of a golf ball! I’m guessing you’ve truly had enough of this mess, which is why you’re probably reading this right now. It just seems like your hair never grows. All you get is tremendous breakage. Now may be the time to put an end to your old detangling methods because the truth is, it really isn’t working for you. There is no need to make something like detangling rob the life out of your hair, especially when you are trying to retain some length. Here are 3 simple steps that you and your hair will thank me later for:

Step 1: Always and I mean always make sure your hair has more than enough slip before using any tool

Not only is this step critical to detangling your hair effectively but also it’s probably the most important step that can either make or break your hair. Natural hair is the most prone to breakage because every kink and bend that makes up the hair’s structure is a potential area for breakage. Therefore, the last thing you would want to do is start using a comb on hair that doesn’t have enough slip for tools to easily glide through. This rule applies even if you opt out to using your own fingers instead. Water in my opinion is by far the best detangler on the planet. It has the strength to overcome those annoying tangles we know as “the enemy.” It does that by temporarily breaking the hydrogen bonds in your hair; allowing your hair to be effortlessly manipulated without breakage. So don’t be afraid to saturate your hair with it. Hair loves this stuff!

Step 2: Get Organized

Whether you’re at work, at school, or at home, organization surely does make life a lot more breathable and less stressful. The same notion applies to your hair. Organize your hair in 4-6 sections (with your fingers) to make it easier to work with depending on the length and thickness of your hair. Not only will this help you focus on getting rid of those tangles easier, but it will also allow you to distinguish between what has been detangled already and what hasn’t. Plus it cuts down your detangling time by up to 50%! Who knew something as simple as sectioning can actually make such a tremendous difference?

Step 3: Use your fingers first before using your detangling tool of choice

I am a firm believer that these multi-purpose tools that we were wonderfully born with are ideal for detangling. They can essentially feel where the tangles are and the brain transmits impulses and directs them on how to tackle it down; making them perfect for the job. For all I know, there are no other combs, brushes or styling tools that can do that. When you do begin to detangle make sure you’re showing your hair a little tender, love and care (TLC). Be gentle with your hair. Start at the tips and work your way to the roots. If you reach any knots that you just can’t get loose despite your best efforts, just snip it off with a pair of sharp hair scissors. DO NOT rip through it. If you do, you are just asking for more hair to fall off your head. When you have thoroughly detangled your hair with your fingers, then you can use your detangling tool if you choose to. Practicing this method of using your fingers first will minimize stress on the cuticles and reduce breakage significantly, which is why you’ll be able to obtain the ultimate goal you wished for. HEALTH AND LENGTH RETENTION!

These 3 basic steps are very easy to follow and will increase your hair’s manageability during your detangling process. I definitely experienced the difference and I’m sure you will too. They make detangling easier, reduces time, and minimizes breakage. What more can you ask for? And of course, you’ll no longer have to pick a battle with your hair anymore.

MOMMA KNOWS BEST

Natural mother and daughter
At least that’s what I thought
Remember when we were children and we nagged, fussed and complained when mom told us to do something. Or when momma shared an important lesson in life, we thought it was irrelevant.I remember saying things like “You’re old school you can’t relate to my Generation!” I thought I knew it all. But looking back at it now as I’ve grown, I realize I didn’t know anything. It turns out that my mom was 99.9% right almost every time. However, there is one thing that I can say I’m 100% certain about and no one, not even my mother, can tell me I’m wrong this time. And that is my natural hair is beautiful.

Ever since I was a child I was taught that natural hair was “ugly”. My kinks and coils had to be chemically altered to “look good”. My hair had to be permanently straightened “before it would grow.” And of course never did I question her practices because “Momma Knows Best Right?” as they say. When momma says you need a relaxer then, you need a relaxer. But boy was she wrong. My hair had picked out a life of its own and decided to descend downhill towards dryness, brittleness and breakage. Overtime I came to realize that although mom was right about many things, she was not right about this.

It wasn’t until I became a woman, that I was able to make my own decision about my hair. This time I didn’t have to fuss, I just did the right thing. The right thing this time meant going against my mom’s word. I made my decision and went natural. Going natural for me wasn’t just a fad, or for looks, it was to find my identity. I believe identity is one of the main purposes of life, and to not live in your own identity is to not have lived a complete life, and I don’t know about you but I don’t want to be partly alive, but rather I want to live my life in it’s fullness.

My mom didn’t teach me anything about caring for my natural hair, simply because she didn’t know how. In addition, she thought it was ugly. For so many years she had lost her identity by assimilating her thoughts into the Europeanized culture that opposed the essence of African beauty; a culture that took our crown and glory for ugliness. Like many others, white supremacy had made an advocate of my mom.

I’ve come to realize that we are currently living in the aftermath of a world that had once saw people of African descendants to be repulsive. And with our hair being the ultimate symbol of ethnic beauty, it makes sense that it got a lot of that hate. It was what society had preconditioned our minds to think during the days of slavery and the attitude has persisted until today.

But I’m glad to say that we are certainly moving forward and things are changing. More than ever before we are now seeing plenty of women taking pride of their natural hair. This new freedom has allowed for a more positive outlook on the beauty that emerges from our scalp. It’s a wonderful time to go natural and embrace your own natural appearance. Our hair is more than just beautiful it’s a symbol of our freedom and power. I don’t think my mom ever saw this coming.