Wednesday, February 3, 2016

The Most Important Question to Ask A Natural Product Brand

A couple of weeks ago, the family that created Ava Anderson Non-Toxic, a networking company, announced that they were walking away from their multi-million dollar enterprise. The reason, they originally stated, was online harassment - specifically stemming from social media. Today, they claim both online harassment and a contractual breech that left mystery ingredients off the label of some of their products, as factors in their decision to give up the business created in their daughter's name.
“Ava and the company have been disparaged and harassed unrelentingly for years online and in person, at speaking events and in her daily life.”
“Second, we have recently learned that several of our suppliers, who professed to have our same mission of providing safe, organic and natural personal care products, have violated our contractual agreements, by including some ingredients, found on all store shelves, that we have passionately educated and even lobbied against, in several of our 80+ products.” – Author’s note: As of February 1st, 2016 – This is not the original statement.
What exactly these missing ingredients are, remains a mystery to some concerned consumers. Which products are affected? It has not been publicly said. Apparently, emulsifiers were some of the ingredients that was left off the label. Other ingredients, the company says, were added in by their suppliers.

Having stated all this, Ava Anderson, as of  February 1st, 2016 is apparently selling the products that contain these ingredients, allegedly added in…ingredients that they have “passionately educated and lobbied against”. *However, they claim products have been tested and have passed, but have yet to share the proof with their representatives or customers.

All sales are listed as final and sold on their website.




Meanwhile, products that are still for sale  - for example, the baby massage and body lotion ingredient list – looks like this as of February 1, 2016.


No indication of the ingredients that they lobbied against.

What good does label-reading do, if there isn’t full disclosure? If you’re like me, an ingredient researcher with a bit of chemistry nerd budding in you, the most important piece of information that you should know, often overlooked and undervalued, is quality control.

Does the company that brands and sells the products you buy, have full control over the quality of the formulation, manufacturing and packaging of their products? 


This just might be the most important answer that will determine whether or not you should use, recommend or build a business with a company. It is more common than not, for natural skincare companies to outsource the manufacturing, formulations and packaging to third party facilities. This puts quality control out of their hands.

On top of that, companies that don’t sell certified organic products, do not have the benefit of a third party agency holding their manufacturers and suppliers to the very stringent practices and processes needed to maintain their status.
The next time you do your research, ask if the company has full control over quality in these ways…
  1. OWN their own formulations.
  2. FORMULATE their own formulas. – Is this formulated by a third party?
  3. MANUFACTURE their own products. – Do they own their own facility or building that runs a production operation?
  4. PACKAGE their own products. – Do they package and ship their orders?
  5. STORE their own products. – Do they own the warehouse that stores their product?
  6. THIRD PARTY CERTIFICATIONS – What valid certifications do they have that shows good manufacturing policies? Example: Certified Organic USDA, IFOAM, ACO
My decision to become a Miessence representative was largely based on their Holistic, Sustainable and Educational business model. With a commitment to transparency, Miessence owns and manages their own production facility. Their production facility is certified organic and is held to those stringent standards. Out of 75+ products, all are certified organic, except the dish detergent. The products can carry food-grade certifications ACO, IFOAM, and USDA to cosmetic-grade certifications. They use two, non-toxic, green chemistry ingredients in only five products. Miessence is also certified as a green business and was the first to be carbon negative. Because the products are created every 30 days, they are sent out fresh, to be sold - no large storage warehouse needed!

But what about the formulations? They formulate ALL but three products (The probiotic range and the Miessence Fulvic Acids).  As a matter of fact, the formulator of the Miessence range, Narelle Chenery, co-founded Miessence. She was the first to formulate skin and body care products that made the certified organic food-grade standard! As a trailblazer, she is aptly named "the Mother of Eco-Beauty".

Because Miessence has full control over their products from formulating, manufacturing, packaging and yes, shipping directly to customers…all in a wind-powered facility, by the way…they are able to offer an exclusive inside look into their factory! Take a look…

Sources:
http://directsellingnews.com/index.php/view/ava_anderson_announces_closure_cites_critics_and_manufacturing_setbacks#.Vq7fwrIrJ1s

www.avaandersonnontoxic.com  - As of 2/1/16

www.ecofriendlymamausa.com

Updated:  2/3/16 10:58AM CT for clarification
*Updated: 2/3/16 11:25 PM CT for further sources

Please read the disclaimer and disclosure policy.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Gift Certificates For #Holistic Gifting


Still don’t have a gift for that special someone?



You can purchase a gift certificate for holistic, non-toxic products. The certificates can even be purchased the day of and received via email.

What a more perfect way of a gift, along with a product consultation with yours truly, so the gifted can truly pick out a gift they love?

With certified organic, raw and synergistic ingredients, what better way of saying “I appreciate you.” by bestowing non-toxic, safe products? Available at www.miessence.com/theoliveparent











Need help with your purchase? Get in touch with the contact form.






Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Homemade Raw Cashew Milk

HomemadeCashewMilkBrandIn my pursuit living dairy free by the way of cow’s milk, (We still consume butter, cheese etc.) I’ve incorporated another super easy recipe as a replacement.

Cashew milk is so delicious and provides a texture closer to milk than hemp seed milk, but does not have the same amazing nutritional profile as hemp seed milk does. It is also more expensive and uses more product to create the same amount of in hemp seed. So cashew milk is a true treat.

I LOVE the flavor - much more than hemp milk . However, hemp milk and cashew milk have been the easiest to make!

Cashew milk is good for those who want to avoid dairy, or those who are lactose intolerant. It is also a good alterative to breastfeeding moms whose nurslings don’t react well to cow’s milk in the breast milk.

Why Homemade?

You can easily purchase nut milk from the stores. I’m not sure about cashew milk, I’ve not seen it for sale. The advantage of making your own nut milk is numerous. For me, number one – I’m in control of the process, and by extension, all of the ingredients that go in it. Having control over quality is invaluable. One we can appreciate in the face of additives, chemicals, preservatives and Lord knows what else. You can greatly minimize your exposure to toxins by making your own foods. Some nut milks have carrageenan in it, which has been linked to gut issues.3 Some nut milks contain more sweeteners than nuts!4 Going homemade is one way I’m taking back my power. Two, it’s fresh! Three – it tastes better! Four, you save money. Sure you expend a bit of time and effort, it is worth the effort isn’t it? The satisfaction from providing whole, quality food is such a good feeling one that motivates me to do more!

Four Simple Ingredients

All you need is four ingredients. It is so versatile you can change it up for chocolate milk, use it as a protein shake by adding a high quality, holistic protein powder or just drink as it is. You can add BerryRadical Antioxidant Superfood for a good antioxidant boost!

Saying that…I have a guideline –recipes are fine and dandy, but let’s be real, we always change it up to suit more of our liking. A little more of this and bit more of that, creates the perfect scenario for you and family to enjoy.

Ingredient List:

2 cups of raw cashew pieces

4 to 5 cups of filtered water

A dash or two of pink salt (or unrefined salt)

1 tablespoon of honey or sweetener of your choice

Directions:

Pre-soak two cups of cashew pieces in filtered water in 1 tbsp. of unrefined salt for one to four hours.

The Importance of Pre-Soaking

Pre-soaking the cashews removes the phytic acid which inhibits nutrient absorption. Phytic acid is naturally occurring and exists to prevent the seed from sprouting immaturely. Found in plants, legumes, seeds and nuts. Nuts appear to have a higher content of phytic acid.1 The problem with phytic acid is that it is an enzyme inhibitor – inhibiting enzymes we need to digest our food. It is the principle storage of phosphorus in plant tissue. To humans and animals with one stomach, the phosphorous is not bioavailable. Not only that, the phytic acid chelates important minerals such as calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc.2 This is an important step that shouldn’t be skipped!

Once your nuts have been pre soaked, strain them and give them a good rinse if it needs it.

Combine the pre-soaked cashews in a blender with the salt and honey. Start the blender and then add the water slowly. You can add all the ingredients in it and hit the puree button with the top on, but take it from me – add the water in last. Winking smile

Extend Your Cashew Resource

If you’re like me, you try to get the most out of what you can. After all, cashews are expensive! You can adjust this guideline by only using ONE cup of presoaked cashews with the rest of the ingredients – leave the amounts the same. The result is less thicker, but the taste is just as creamy and divine! Use up the second cup with the same amount of ingredients right away. You’ll have a double batch – lending credence to the phrase “Less is more”! Use your batch(es) within 24 to 48 hours. If you want a thicker, creamier outcome, follow the original guideline.

A note: you can purchase full-sized cashews, but it makes little sense since they’ll be pureed. Cashew pieces are typically less expensive and perfect for blending since they are already in pieces.

 

Sources:
1 - http://wellnessmama.com/59139/soaking-nuts-seeds/

2 - http://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/living-with-phytic-acid/

3 - http://www.theoliveparent.com/2015/09/raw-protein-hemp-milk-recipe.html

4 - http://drelaine.com/commercial-almond-milk-exposed-its-a-fake-beverage/

Friday, November 27, 2015

#BlackFriday #CyberMonday–Miessence Superfood 10 Day Vitality Challenge KIt

BlackFridayVitalityKit

Our next 10-Day Vitality Challenge group starts January 1st – Just in time for New Year’s! Get your new year’s resolution off to the right start with…

39 Raw Super Foods

13 Probiotic Strains

5 Raw Grass Juices

3 Types of Blue Green Algae

*This kit is offered for a very limited amount of time, 40% off – with very limited supplies. ONLY AVAILABLE HERE.

The kits contain:

10 day supply of BerryRadical Antioxidant Superfood

10 day supply of DeepGreen Alkalising Superfood

10 day supply of InLiven Probiotic Superfood

20 page Vitality Challenge book including self-assessment guide, detox guide and bonus Smoothie recipes

More information on the 10 Day Vitality Challenge Kits and ingredients can be found here.


10 Day Vitality Challenge Graduates’ Testimonials

"First let me say that I am very skeptical when it comes to these type of things. I usually stay far away from anything like this. I reluctantly agreed to try this challenge, mostly to make my wife happy. Through the 10 days I made an effort to not change anything else in my daily diet and lifestyle. My goal was to be able to pinpoint any benefits, or lack there of, to the superfoods. Well... Here on day 10 of the challenge I feel fantastic! I have a physically demanding job, and at the end of the day I have way more energy than before. I also have many body aches and pains due to my work which now are almost non existent. I would get headaches every couple days, I think this is day 6 without one. My bottle of ibuprofen hasn't been touched in a week! This after just 10 days! I am not skeptical anymore."

"This has been a great journey for my husband and I! What a fun intro to the Miessence superfood line. We've been so impressed with the quality of product, shipping (Auz to Alberta, Canada in 5 days!!!) and the community here! It's been great!!! Thanks everyone! We are both feeling more energized... less body pain, less fatigue and me less brain fog!! My gut has never been happier! As a final testimony, this may sound a tad gross, but I just noticed my tongue is pink again, and not covered in white! Happy happy happy!!"


Interested? Contact me through the contact box on the sidebar.

*Offer valid while supplies last.

 

You can learn more about the monthly, private, 10 Day Vitality Challenge Support group (on Facebook) by signing up for my biweekly, newsletter here.  Also get a FREE toxic test resource list, entries to monthly giveaways of Miessence products and transformational information.