Wednesday, August 31, 2011

BPA Exposure

I receive some interesting emails everyday, and the ones I deem important are the ones I post about.

Before our daughter was born a few years ago, I knew nothing about BPA, and the health issues it can cause.  I did not even know what BPA was.  I inquired on what it meant to be BPA-free when I heard on television how the number "7" on the bottom of plastic containers is unsafe, and a friend of mine told me how she wanted to buy BPA-free bottles and such for their daughter.

So, if you have no idea what BPA is all about, please take a few minutes to read the article I copied and pasted below. 

"Do Your Part: Reduce Exposure to BPA

Terri Bennett
Mclatchy-Tribune News Service.

What are the chances that you are buying and bringing BPA right into your own home? Probably pretty good, and there is reason to be concerned.

BPA - or bisphenol-A - shows up in a lot of the products we use each and every day and it is linked to developmental problems, cancers, heart disease, diabetes, and infertility. For those want to reduce their exposure to this controversial chemical, here are my top five ways to do just that.

1) Be Particular About Your Plastic

BPA can be found in plastic food containers and water bottles. It's best to drink water from a stainless steel or a "BPA-free" labeled bottle. If you are using plastic food containers or buy food in a plastic container, check the bottom. BPA is used in polycarbonate (PC) containers that are often marked No. 7. Plastics with the recycling numbers No. 1, No. 2, and No. 4 are safer choices.

2) Make Better Choices for Your Baby

BPA can actually leach into liquid formula sold in metal cans. Powdered baby formula has been shown to be BPA-free so it's the best choice. Most manufacturers now offer baby bottles made without BPA but as a general rule, hard, clear plastic often contains BPA while soft, cloudy plastic usually does not. Avoid baby bottles marked "PC" or No. 7 on the bottom.

3) Cut Down on Canned Foods

BPA is also found in the lining of many canned food and juices. The chemical can actually leach from the liner into the food itself. Seek out cans labeled "BPA-free" and choose food items packaged in glass or tetrapak pouches to reduce BPA exposure. Experts also recommend rinsing canned fruit and vegetables with water before eating to reduce exposure.

4) Careful How You Handle Those Receipts

Several studies have found BPA in thermal paper including cash register receipts. If you don't need the receipt, leave it or ask the cashier not to print one. If you need it, be sure to wash your hands after handling.

Certainly, never let your children handle store receipts. You can tell if the receipt is printed on thermal paper if it makes a mark when you scratch it.

5) Glass Is Good

There is evidence that BPA can leach into food when it is heated in plastic containers in a microwave, even those that labeled as "microwave safe." To reduce potential exposure, heat your food in a glass or ceramic container.

The bottom line? Reducing BPA exposure is an important way to create a healthier home for you and your family. Do Your Part when buying and using products to make sure they won't contaminate your food, your body, or our planet."

One thing that I learned from this article that I did not know about BPA is that it is on thermal paper, including cash register receipts.  I will now watch how I handle cash register receipts.

In closing, always remember that the number "7" is unsafe when it comes to BPA!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

"How Great Thou Art" Song

Talk about a beautiful/angelic, touching song...  If you have not already heard Carrie Underwood and Vince Gill's version of the song, "How Great Thou Art," please take the time to listen to it.  It is tear-jerking, and gave me goosebumps!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Dealing With Adversities

We all experience different degrees of adversities in our lives.  How we deal with our adversities is the real test of our faith in God.

I used to go through life thinking everything should be like the pages in a storybook--typical mindset of a young child of God--until reality hit me.  If I remember correctly, I realized that life is not going to be struggle-free after I finished college and got married, which is when I came to the realization that trials draw us closer to God--ongoing health issues have been why I have a more intimate relationship with Him.  So, in an attempt to find out what He wanted me to do with my life, I started to study His Word more and more.  Through listening to our Pastor's sermons and reading His Word and Godly books, I gained a passion to be like Him, and learned that life is not going to be stress-free.

I read our devotional a couple of weeks ago, and am posting on it now.  I want to share it, because it brings light to how we need to deal with our adversities.

"The typical view of the Christian life is that it means being delivered from all adversity.  But it actually means being delivered in adversity, which is something very different.  "He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.  No evil shall befall you, nor shall any plague come near your dwelling . . ." (Psalm 91:1, 10)--the place where you are at one with God.

If you are a child of God, you will certainly encounter adversities, but Jesus says you should not be surprised when they come.  "In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world."  He is saying, "There is nothing for you to fear."  The same people who refused to talk about their adversities before they were saved often complain and worry after being born again because they have the wrong idea of what it means to live the life of a saint.

God does not give us overcoming life--He gives us life as we overcome.  The strain of life is what builds our strength.  If there is no strain, there will be no strength.  Are you asking God to give you life, liberty, and joy?  He cannot, unless you are willing to accept the strain.  And once you face the strain, you will immediately get the strength.  Overcome your own timidity and take the first step.  Then God will give you nourishment--"To him who overcomes I will give to eat from the tree of life . . ." (Revelation 2:7)."

The part of the whole reading that spoke to me was where it said, "God does not give us overcoming life--He gives us life as we overcome."  That sentence needs to resonate within us, and remind us how He loves us so much, and wants us to draw closer to Him when adversities come knocking at our door.  Why not hand everything over to God, because it is only then that you will find complete peace.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Are You Consuming Enough Water?

I drink many different fluids everyday (i.e., water (sometimes with lemon), juice, coffee, etc.), and always wondered if you actually need eight glasses of water or other fluids a day in order to be healthy.  Well, I probably drink more than eight glasses of fluids, including water, a day--I do not drink as many fluids if I am not at home--and feel that my body will obviously give me a sign if I am dehydrated.

After reading an article about water consumption, I now know how to tell if I need to drink more fluids.  Copied and pasted below is the article I read, which will help you determine if you are drinking enough fluids each day.

"Everywhere you look, there is a different “magic” number of glasses of water you should be drinking: Is it six glasses per day or is it eight? It can be very confusing and hard to decide if you are drinking the right amount.

Also confusing is the misconception that we must drink a certain amount of water, when in fact we only need to consume the right amount of fluid to stay hydrated. A fluid is any liquid, including coffee, tea, milk, juice, water and other drinks, but it also includes foods that are mainly water, such as some fruits, vegetables and soups.

It is very important to be well-hydrated for our bodies to carry out our daily tasks. A person’s fluid needs are affected by a number of different factors, so there is no “magic” amount that you should be taking in. There are, however, many ways to tell if you are properly hydrated:

  • Urine: Your urine should be clear or a very light yellow color. A dark yellow indicates dehydration, so you will need to drink more water. Also you should need to use the bathroom every couple of hours.

  • Stool: It should be easy to pass your stool. If you are straining a lot, this may be an indicator of dehydration. If you have consistently loose stools, this may be an indicator of overhydration. Your body may not be able to handle the amount of fluids you are taking in and it will not be absorbed.

  • Skin: Your skin is also a good indicator of hydration levels. If you pull up the skin on the back of your hand and let go, it should bounce back to its original position quickly. If not, you may be dehydrated. Also, dry skin or a dry mouth may be indicators of dehydration.

  • Thirst: If you are thirsty, you are in need of more fluids for sure. If you never have thirst, it is still important to take in fluids and use the other tools to help determine your hydration levels.

Use these tools to help you decide how much water is right for you."

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

God's Grace Is Amazing!

The below video is a great reminder of God's grace.  His grace is something we should all be thankful for!!!