Letter From The Publishers

Environmental Stewardship

Welcome to our annual April celebration of Earth Day. This outstanding event has become a rite of spring that marks the anniversary of the birth of the modern environmental movement on April 22, 1970. Every day is Earth Day in tree town. With so many university students and cutting-edge businesses in the Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti area,…

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Local Articles & Spotlights

Climate Change and Spirituality

By Barbra White

By Barbra White We are all part of an intrinsic co-arising web of life. One part affects the whole. Through observations from space, we know that what we do in…

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Assessing the Body’s Environmental Chemical Burden

By Cindy Klement

by Cindy Klement We all swim in a slurry of chemicals during our day-to-day life on this planet. Some of these chemicals become stored in our tissue, where they can…

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Reiki Plus Chakra Mat Equals Total Success

By Natural Awakenings Publishing Corp.

The HealthyLine PEMF Inframat Pro First Edition Chakra Mat is packed with new technology, and its large size of 74 by 28 inches fits perfectly on a reiki table to…

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Well-Being and Meditation

By Kapil Castoldi

The solution to all human problems is summarized in this short paragraph by spiritual teacher Sri Chinmoy (1931-2007). “I am in preparation. I am in preparation for a new dawn,…

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New Farm Bill Boosts Michigan Agriculture

By Natural Awakenings Publishing Corp.

The 2018 Farm Bill supports the one in four jobs related to food and agriculture in Michigan, the state’s second-largest industry. It will provide five years of certainty for Michigan’s…

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How to Weave Hemp into Gold

By Richard L. Steinhart

The dilemma facing socially conscious people is how to justify making money through the capitalism system.  Buying shares of stock means owning part of a company. Finding small cap, undervalued…

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News Briefs

Become a Holistic Nurse in Any Practice Setting

Rediscover the heart and art of nursing and meet the CE requirements for Holistic Nursing certification or recertification. The Integrative Healing Arts Program in Holistic Nursing (IHAP) is a unique, three-session, 84-hour continuing nursing education (CNE) program in a relaxing retreat setting. Graduates receive a certificate in Holistic Nursing and Integrative Modalities; become an instrument…

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Attend a Basic PSYCH-K Workshop in Ann Arbor

Mary Mazur, a certified PSYCH-K basic instructor, certified holistic RN and owner of Ignite and Heal Your Life, LLC,  will present a three-day Basic PSYCH-K workshop, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., from April 12 through 14 in Ann Arbor. She advises, “A health crisis may come into your life as an opportunity for you. This…

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Vegans Gather to Celebrate Meatless Living

The 20th annual Michigan VegFest 2019, hosted by VegMichigan, will take place from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., April 28, at the Suburban Collection Showplace. VegFest is the state’s largest event focused on promoting the health, ethical and environmental benefits of a plant-based lifestyle. There has been a huge increase in vegan eating, and this…

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Ann Arbor Earth Day Festival

The Ann Arbor Earth Day Festival is an annual celebration coordinated by the Ann Arbor Earth Day Festival Planning Committee, a coalition of local environmental nonprofits and agencies, and held at Leslie Science & Nature Center. This year, it will be held from noon to 4 p.m., April 28, with displays from 40 local environmental,…

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Volunteer to Support the Local Environment

Natural Area Preservation (NAP) works to protect and restore Ann Arbor’s natural areas and to foster an environmental ethic among its citizens. This involves staff and volunteers conducting plant and animal inventories, ecological monitoring and stewardship projects in Ann Arbor parks. Community involvement is vital to the success of its conservation efforts. NAP projects take…

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New Sustainable Learning Exchange

Michigan Sustainability Cases (MSC) began with the mandate to create a new kind of teaching cases, co-designed for contributing solutions to real-world sustainability challenges. Organized around real-world case studies, Galaxy will convene environmentally minded people from all backgrounds. They will integrate sustainability science and knowledge from different fields, make sustainability solutions and decision-making more inclusive,…

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GIVE 365 is a Volunteer Clearinghouse

GIVE 365 is a volunteer gateway to a variety of ways to meet neighbors, see new parts of the city and improve the community with year-round opportunities for almost every interest, schedule, ability and age. Volunteers can sign up for one-day events and short-term experiences or make a long-term commitment. Volunteers lead games and activities…

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Double Up Food Bucks for Nutrition Assistance Patrons

Fair Food Network’s Double Up Food Bucks program doubles the value of federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP or food stamps) benefits spent at participating farmers’ markets and grocery stores, helping people bring home more fruits and vegetables, and supporting local farmers. Double Up provides SNAP recipients a one-to-one match to buy healthy, fresh fruits…

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Our Planet

Netflix Series Reveals Its Fragile Beauty Ten years after the groundbreaking documentary Planet Earth, an eight-part sequel, Our Planet, shows even more rapturous scenes of our planet’s most precious species and fragile habitats. Premiering globally April 5 on Netflix, it was filmed during four years in 50 countries across every continent, involving more than 600…

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Food Co-op Benefits Available to All

The People’s Food Co-op is Ann Arbor’s first natural-foods grocery store, serving the community by offering a full-range of groceries, produce and environmentally sensitive cleaning products with local, natural and organic options in every department for more than 40 years. Although the co-op is a democratically run, member-owned organization, customers do not have to be…

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Health Briefs

Meditation and Music Slow Cellular Aging

Meditating or listening to classical music altered biomarkers associated with cellular aging and Alzheimer’s disease in adults experiencing memory loss, according to a recent West virginia university study. The 60 participants had subjective cognitive decline, including forgetting familiar names and losing objects, a condition that may be a preclinical stage of Alzheimer’s. For 12 minutes…

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Vegetables and Orange Juice Protect Memory

A Harvard study was conducted on the diets of nearly 28,000 male health professionals spanning two decades between their 50s and 70s and published by the American Academy of Neurology. It found those that drank orange juice and ate leafy greens, berries and dark orange and red vegetables suffered significantly less memory loss than others.…

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Lemon Balm Lowers Blood Pressure, Reduces LDL

Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis), a soothing herb from the mint family, can significantly improve the condition of patients with chronic stable angina, reports a recent study in the Journal of Herbal Medicine. Researchers at Iran’s Ahvaz Jundishapur university of medical Sciences tested 80 patients with the condition, which involves chest pain linked to a lack…

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Rose Hip Reduces Cold Symptoms

During the six months of Denmark’s frigid winter, 107 study volunteers took either two grams of liquid rose hip (marketed as Hyben vital) or a placebo daily. university of Copenhagen researchers found that the rose hip group experienced 18 percent fewer colds, as well as significantly fewer symptoms such as coughing, headache, muscle stiffness and…

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Light Pollution Disturbs Sleep

Being exposed to high levels of artificial outdoor light at night contributes to insomnia and greater use of sleeping pills, reports a new study from South Korea’s Seoul National university College of medicine. The researchers studied the records of 52,027 people without diagnosed sleep disorders—60 percent of them women—and correlated their sleeping pill use with…

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Ashwagandha Normalizes Hypothyroid Levels

Ashwagandha, a traditional ayurvedic herb, can significantly improve symptoms of subclinical hypothyroidism, a condition that affects many women, a new double-blind clinical study shows. Researchers from India’s Sudbhawana Hospital tested 50 patients that had high circulating thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) levels. For eight weeks, half were given 600 milligrams a day of ashwagandha; the other half…

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Nuts Improve Blood Vessel Health

Munching on almonds and walnuts significantly increases blood vessel dilation and reduces artery plaque, say West Virginia University scientists. In a two-day study, 27 overweight volunteers ate 77 grams of almonds (about 2.5 handfuls) along with their lunch one day; on another day, they ate 60 grams of walnuts (about two handfuls) with lunch. Measurements…

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Bitter Melon Eases Knee Pain

Bitter melon (Momordica charantia), a spiky, cucumbershaped fruit, has traditionally been used in Asian countries to lower blood sugar. Now, researchers at Universiti Sains Malaysia report that it can significantly improve symptoms and reduce the pain of knee osteoarthritis. Half of 75 patients were given a placebo and the other half 1,500 milligrams three times…

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Harmful Bacteria Linked to Certain Showerheads

Harmful bacteria from the genus Mycobacterium have been shown to linger in showerheads and lead to lung infections through inhalation of steam. University of Colorado researchers analyzed 656 biofilms coating the inside of showerheads sent to them by volunteers throughout the U.S. and Europe, and found twice as much mycobacterium in showerheads from households receiving…

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Sniffing Dogs Can Detect Malaria

After years of worldwide decline, malaria is on a worrisome upswing, but researchers from Durham University, in the UK, have found a quick, non-invasive, low-cost detection method: dogs. Trained to sniff out malaria parasites in socks that West African children wore for one night, the canines correctly identified 70 percent among the infected and 90…

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Global Briefs

Over Dose

Citrus Crops to Receive Human Antibiotics Scientists at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) expressed concern over a recent ruling by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) that opens the door to widespread use of the antibiotics streptomycin and oxytetracycline to spray commercial citrus crops. The antibiotics, which are often used on people, can kill…

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Muddled Message

GMO Labeling Diluted Under final rules released by the current administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s national labelling standard for genetically modified organisms (GMOs) completely exempts foods made with highly processed ingredients grown with GMOs, including sugar made from sugar beets, high-fructose corn syrup and refined soybean and canola oils. The change will allow 78…

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Fuel Folly

Nuclear Waste Disposal Remains Elusive A new report issued by environmental watchdog Greenpeace details the growing global dangers of accumulating nuclear waste that will remain hazardous for hundreds of centuries. Several of the designated storage facilities in the seven countries surveyed are nearly filled to capacity now. Unresolved safety issues across the industry include fire…

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Balancing Act

Endangered Species on the Rebound The Endangered Species Act seems to be working, with more than 75 percent of marine mammals and sea turtles protected by the act recovering, according to a new peer-reviewed study by scientists at the Center for Biological Diversity published in the academic journal PLOS ONE. North Atlantic green sea turtle…

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Wave This

Planet Earth Has a Flag A new project by Oskar Pernefeldt, a graduate student at Beckmans College of Design, in Stockholm, Sweden, has designed a new flag for the entire planet to be used worldwide in a move toward unity. Its minimalist design shows seven rings intertwined on a deep, sea-blue background, forming a flower…

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Fake Foliage

Bionic Leaf Tops Plants in Photosynthesis Bionic Leaf 2.0, a new, artificial photosynthesis system developed by a team headed by Harvard university scientists, takes in carbon dioxide, water and sunshine to create a sugary fuel. Solar energy splits up a water molecule, and bacteria turn hydrogen and carbon dioxide into liquid fuel, mainly isopropanol, which…

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Eco Fill-up

Liquid Fuel Stores Solar Energy Solar power is cheap and plentiful, but there has been no way to store it efficiently. Scientists from Chalmers university of Technology, in Gothenberg, Sweden, are developing a liquid molecule composed of carbon, hydrogen and nitrogen that when exposed to sunlight, rearranges the bonds between its atoms into an energized…

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Spring Decluttering

Many Benefits of Reorganizing Spring is the season of renewal, and on the home front, that means cleaning, organizing and reducing clutter. While we apply natural, eco-friendly cleaning agents, the act of moving items around offers the opportunity to rearrange or eliminate some of them, providing a fresh look and a sense of comfort, order…

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Techno Timber

Artificial Wood Resists Fire and Water A new, lightweight synthetic wood has been created that is as strong as wood, but without its traditional vulnerability to fire and water, as reported by Shu-Hong Yu, a materials chemist at the university of Science and Technology of China, in Hefei, and the author of a study published…

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Poles Apart

Earth’s Extremities on the Edge The North Pole and South Pole each have unique, pristine environments, virtually untouched by civilization, but a air of federal studies cast doubt upon their future status. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), in a study based on satellite data, warned that ancient glaciers in West Antarctica, thought to…

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Eco Tips

Healthier Dry Cleaning

Non-Toxic Ways to Lower Risks Chemicals used in dry cleaning clothes have long been linked to health concerns for both people and the environment. Perchloroethylene (“perc” for short) is most commonly used in this process. Federal regulatory agencies have documented myriad negative effects from exposure to the petroleum-based solvent. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health…

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Tips for a Tree-Free Home

Many Ways to Pare Down Paper Use If one in five households switched to electronic bills, statements and payments, the collective impact would save 151 million pounds of paper annually, eliminating 8.6 million full garbage bags and 2 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions, according to the PayItGreen Alliance. While computers continue to offer significant…

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Breathe Easy

Ways to Improve Indoor Air Quality For much of the country, winter means spending more time indoors—and exposed to potential toxins. Indoor air quality is critically important to children, the elderly and people with respiratory problems that may be especially sensitive to pollutants, according to WebMD.com. Recognizing and avoiding some of the most common sources…

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Earth Christmas

Guide to Sustainable Merry-Making There is symmetry between living in an ecoconscious manner and the spirit of Christmas. Striving for peace on Earth and good will to all can also be expressed in reducing the holiday’s impact on the planet. Alternatives to a cut or artificial plastic Christmas tree abound. Purchase a potted tree to…

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Rebirthing Books

New Life for Old Friends Spread the wonders and joys of reading to others while conserving woodlands and other resources and keeping books out of landfills by donating them. Many outlets welcome books that may have been collecting dust at home, but can enrich the lives of others of all ages, both locally and worldwide.…

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Action Alert

Support Citizen Action Against Plastics

Every minute, the equivalent of an entire garbage truck of plastic gets dumped into our oceans, reports the World Economic Forum. Many of the materials are disposable, single-use plastic products like straws, bags and Styrofoam containers, which some cities and towns have banned. This type of citizen action is increasingly blocked by the Plastic Industry…

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Youth Climate Strike Coming to U.S.

Demanding immediate action, students are taking part in climate strikes around the world, and on March 15, young activists in the U.S. will add their voices to the escalating #FridaysForFuture movement. It was bolstered in January by 16-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg, of Sweden, calling for the first global climate strike while attending the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Action in this country is being…

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Sway Congress

Save Wild Horses Campaign Update The Trump Administration’s Fiscal Year 2019 budget again calls on Congress to lift long-standing prohibitions on the destruction and slaughter of wild horses and burros. The budget seeks to cut approximately $14 million of the Interior Department’s Bureau of Land Management Wild Horse and Burro Program by selling as many as 90,000 federally protected…

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