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Archive for the ‘Organic’ Category

Why Choose Organic Cosmetics

Friday, September 18th, 2015

You wouldn’t consider a highly-processed, artificially-flavored applesauce to be as healthy as an organically grown apple, would you? Same with cosmetics. A beauty product made with synthetics, or even ultra-processed natural ingredients, is not good for your skin or overall health. Natural, nontoxic cosmetics are the organic fruit of your beauty diet.
Synthetic ingredients are not only harmful to humans and the environment, but are actually less effective than natural and organic ingredients. Pure ingredients from nature work with your skin and body to boost healing and regeneration.

What are Natural Cosmetics?
Natural cosmetics are made with ingredients from plants, minerals, and certain animal-derived ingredients, either untreated or treated with other natural ingredients. Pure, natural ingredients are minimally processed to preserve the natural benefits the ingredient holds.
While there is unfortunately no legal definition of the term “Natural” at this time, look for organic products to be BDIH Certified. BDIH is a well-established German certifying body with extremely strict standards on cosmetic ingredients, packaging, and production.
To obtain the BDIH Certified Natural seal a product must meet these requirements:
* Ingredients must come from a plant or mineral source
* Ingredients must be organically-sourced or wild-harvested wherever possible
* Free from petrochemical-derived or synthetic ingredients
* No genetically modified ingredients (GMOs)
* Ecologically conscious, recyclable, and minimal packaging
* No animal testing allowed

What are Organic Cosmetics?
Organic ingredients are those grown and produced in accordance with strict government-controlled standards –the same organic standards that apply to food–with third-party verification. Organic standards require no use of synthetic pesticides, chemical fertilizers, sewage sludge, or GMOs. Strict rules also apply to the treatment of animals and the environment. A truly organic product bears a “Certified Organic” stamp from an official organic certifier. However, in many cases, it is simply not possible to meet the 95% organic requirement to get the official organic seal. For instance, a natural sunscreen usually requires over 10% of titanium dioxide or zinc oxide, so the best it can do is be 90% organic. If a cosmetic contains minerals, such as titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, mica, or iron oxides that are used to give it color, these minerals eat up the 5% of allowable non-organic ingredients. In many cases, it’s simply not possible to create a usable cosmetic or skin care product that is 95% organic.

Though BDIH is a natural cosmetics certifier, it does require product manufacturers to use organic content wherever possible (when available in sufficient quantity and quality). BDIH is responsible for creating the world’s first organic body care certification.

What About Preservatives?
Preservatives play a very important role in the safety and efficacy of natural and organic cosmetics. Without a sound preservation method certain cosmetic products may grow harmful bacteria over time. But preservatives need not be synthetic to be effective. There are many safe preservation methods used in natural cosmetics. Airtight packaging, plant alcohol, and certain herbs and essential oils prevent bacterial growth.
Let’s address the paraben issue. Parabens are synthetic preservatives that researchers suspect enter our bloodstream and mimic estrogen in our bodies. Phenoxyethanol is a semi-synthetic preservative which has become more widely used in natural cosmetic brands since more research has been conducted on the evils of parabens. Though some view phenoxyethanol as a safe alternative to parabens, studies show it causes damaging effects on the brain and nervous systems in animals. Even the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) data sheets show “chromosomal changes and genetic mutation effects in testing as well as testicular atrophy and reproductive damage in mice.”

Ingredients to Avoid
An organic ingredient has to meet strict requirements regarding production, but organic skin care can still contain ingredients that are not so healthy. Get to know which cosmetic ingredients are harmful and best avoided, and always follow brands with full ingredient listings and clear safety policy displaying which ingredients they do not allow in their products.

New Trends in Organic Farming

Wednesday, August 5th, 2015

The growing popularity of Homeopathy in Europe has been well documented with statistics and recent newspaper articles that have raked unnecessary controversies only adds to its relevance. Not just the British royals but commoners from countries such as Italy, France, Greece, Spain not to forget Germany, the cradle of Homeopathy are flocking to this form of alternative medicine in droves.

Now the European commission has put its stamp of approval on Homeopathy by issuing guidelines for organic farmers in Britain to treat their livestock with Homeopathic remedies. Its directive specifically states that it is a general necessity for production of all organic livestock that homeopathic and herbal products shall be used over normal usage of chemically formulated allopathic veterinary treatment that commonly manifest as antibiotics in the market

Field Tests: Getting a shot in its arm is the endorsement and support from ‘The Soil Association’ which is a UK based leading body certifying organic produce. The official press release from the association states that while the use of homeopathic treatments was not mandatory to acquire organic certification, it could be ‘effective’. This official press release from the soil association is backed by their extensive researched data they have collected from livestock farmers and vets those points towards significant health care improvement by adopting herbal and homeopathic treatments.

UN endorsement: Organic farming got the stamp of approval from the united Nations in 2013 which it declared as sustainable and scalable to meet the rising global food demands. Scores of research studies have backed organic farming with field confirmed reports of increasing yields, and better stress performance than chemically treated plant and favorable impact on local bio-diversity.

Startling facts about Organic farming

• Organic farming yielded 33% more in drought years as compared to chemically treated farming

• Almost 80% of Organic farming produce is coming from developing countries. This is because developed nations are still stuck with large scale industrial mechanized farming. The incentive to make this switch is low, therefore there is a lack of initiative here.

• Studies in Argentina show that organic farming is increasing the quality and intensity of its surrounding biodiversity. Birds, Bees & butterflies, bugs, farmland species like vesper mouse are thriving because of wild plant growth under Organic farming

Climate change & Organic farming: It is now being realized that industrial farming with its large scale mechanized production and reliance on gene specific technology and chemicals is helping little to stop climate change. There is a need to move from the usual business-as-usual farming to farming-like-the-earth-matters. This is where it is believed that regenerative organic farming will remove the imbalance of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere by a process called decarbonization. Organic farming will help restore local ecology, build bio-diversity, has a better effect on soil conservation and help small and marginal farmers cultivate in a profitable way.