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

Probiotics Ease Bipolar Disorder

Research on 66 patients with bipolar disorder found that patients receiving probiotic supplements were three times less likely to be rehospitalized than those given a placebo. The study from the Sheppard Pratt Health System, in Baltimore, gave half of discharged patients a placebo and the other half a capsule containing two probiotics, Bifidobacterium lactis (BB-12)…

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Curcumin Boosts Fertility in Men

Sperm counts have plunged by half in the last 40 years among American and European men, according to a recent review of scientific studies. In a new double blind study of 56 infertile men, researchers at Iran’s Qazvin University of Medical Sciences found that curcumin, an active ingredient in turmeric, can boost sperm counts. Each…

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Gut Susceptible to Food Additives

By mixing food additives with human gut microbes in petri dishes, scientists at the Czech Republic’s Institute of Microbiology found that gut microbes with anti-inflammatory properties were highly susceptible to being harmed by additives, while microbes with pro-inflammatory properties were mostly resistant. “We speculate that permanent exposure of human gut microbiota to even low levels…

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Smoking Bans Lower Blood Pressure

Non-smokers that live in areas that have banned smoking in public spaces such as restaurants, bars and workplaces have lower systolic blood pressure. In a Northwestern University study reported by the American Heart Association, blood pressure readings of 5,115 adults ages 18 to 30 in Birmingham, Chicago, Minneapolis and Oakland were taken over a 30-year…

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Sugary Drinks Linked to Kidney Disease

Drinking lots of sugar-sweetened sodas and juices significantly increases the risk of chronic kidney disease, reports a new study from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Using health questionnaires for 3,003 African-American adults in Jackson, Mississippi, covering a 13-year period, the researchers found that the top third of subjects, those consuming the most…

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Stress May Be Worse in the Evening

Acute, late-day stress may be harder on our bodies, say researchers at Japan’s Hokkaido University. They measured the levels of the stress hormone cortisol in 27 young, healthy volunteers, and then put them through 15 minutes of stressful events that included making a speech and doing mental math. Half of the volunteers were tested two…

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Household Cleaning Products Affect Babies’ Guts and Weight

The heavy use of household cleaning disinfectants may contribute to changes in infant gut bacteria and weight gain, reports a new study in the Canadian Medical Association Journal. University of Alberta researchers collected fecal samples and studied the gut health of 757 babies between the ages of 3 and 4 months; then restudied the children…

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Herbs Make Worthy Prebiotics

Ginger, black pepper and holy basil, mainstays in traditional medicines as anti-inflammatories, also contain significant prebiotic potential that could help gut health, report researchers from India’s National Institute of Nutrition, in Hyderabad. Holy basil (Ocimum sanctum) and ginger (Zingiber officinale) showed significantly higher prebiotic activity, especially of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium species, when compared to the…

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Pine Bark Soothes Prostate

Benign prostate hypertrophy (BPH), a condition that affects half of men older than 60, is related to increased prostate land size and a reduced flow of urine from the bladder. To test the effectiveness of the pine bark extract Pycnogenol on BPH, researchers from Italy’s D’Annuncio university divided 75 men with the condition into three…

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Zyto Biofeedback Records Subtle Changes

The ancient Chinese discovered that there is a vital life force energy flowing through the body. They called this vital force chi. They also found that there are 12 life energy meridian lines that flow through the body that transport energy between different organs and systems of the body thus keeping the body in harmonious…

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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

Last Straw

Groups Work to Make U.S. Go Strawless About 500 million plastic straws are discarded daily in America, reports the U.S. National Park Service. Plastic that reaches waterways is ingested by marine life and our food chain. Individuals and municipalities are taking action to support options, including going strawless. The Last Plastic Straw (TheLastPlasticStraw.org), a project…

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Green Shoes

Being Sustainable Down to Our Soles Following an environmentally friendly lifestyle can be felt right down to our toes. Increase the life of footwear by being properly fitted in high-quality shoes, performing ongoing maintenance and patronizing cobblers. Pay extra attention to waterproofing shoes in winter and rainy seasons. Also, vegan alternatives to leather are available.…

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Rethinking Toiletries

Using Less Saves Both Money and the Planet The maxim “less is more” applies well to skin care and personal hygiene. Overuse of products is costly and increases pollution. Both genders are prone to overdoing it when it comes to basic activities like washing, shampooing and shaving. Here are some helpful tips. Take fewer showers…

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Natural Pools

Swim Amidst Stones and Plants Those spending time in their traditional home swimming pool this summer or taking the plunge to install a natural pool have healthy and cost-saving options. Saltwater pools are far better for skin, hair and lungs. Their use of sodium chloride reduces possible side effects from long-term exposure to the chlorine…

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Rail Trails

Summer Vacations with a Fun Twist This summer, consider the convenience and relaxation of watching the world go by outside a panoramic side window instead of focusing on driving the road ahead. Train travel is also more cost-effective, affordable and eco-friendly than flying. SmarterTravel.com highlights railroad discounts for children, seniors, students, AAA members, military personnel…

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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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