Type A deodorant Review - Do natural deodorants really work?

Is conventional deodorant safe to use? Does aluminum cause Alzheimer's disease? Do natural deodorants work? These are all questions I have asked. Lucky for you, I have also done a lot of testing on these theories. I once went almost a whole year without wearing conventional deodorant - you can read about the first 7 months here.

Around a year of "no deodorant" my husband frankly told me to start using it again. So do natural deodorants work? Yes and no. They can help a lot with odor, but they almost always do nothing for sweating. And they are not always the best at odor control either. I found that over time, my body almost became "resistant" to the natural products and would hold a certain level of smell. I would use clay masks under my arms (dead sea mud to be exact) to detox and remove the ingrained scent so I could start again with my natural deodorant regimen.

To be fair, when I was using conventional deodorant, I would often have times that it just wasn't enough and I'd have to switch to a "clinical" deodorant for a while. Might just be my body chemistry. Using the dead sea mud masks really did provide a reboot - a clean slate, if you will.

The other irritating part of natural deodorants is the delivery. When I made my own deodorants - or even when I bought them - they tended to be messier, less shelf stable, and/or less convenient.

So I went back to using regular deodorant. Secret is the brand I use most often. I've tried other brands, and for me they either smell too flowery or they just didn't' work.

Then I had the chance to review Type A deodorant. It claims to be "powered by natural ingredients" and be "aluminum free."

So why does any of that matter anyway? Well... there is good evidence that chemicals we put onto our skin can/does make it's way into our bloodstream.

There is also evidence that aluminum is associated with Alzheimer's disease. Before I get a bunch of comments telling me that recent news has suggested no clear link between aluminum and Alzheimer's - the actual data suggests a link. The news does not always sell the truth...

This does not mean aluminum causes the disease. It does mean that it is somehow involved. Like all human diseases, they are multifactorial and complex. But having metals in your body - and consequently in your blood vessels and organs is generally not a good thing.

So - most of us would like to limit our exposure to aluminum because why not try to reduce the risk of Alzheimer's any way we can? Personally, my father has Alzheimer's disease. It is a life robber. Plain and simple. It is horrible and there is no way to sugar coat it. Do I think aluminum caused his Alzheimer's? I think it's part of the story - but probably not because he used deodorant. He has Alzheimer's for a host of complex reasons.

My dad did have a high aluminum exposure but it was because he used a lot of over the counter heart burn medicines (antacids.) They are loaded with aluminum, and they lower your stomach acid which is actually a very bad idea. But I am getting off topic. I have a chart full of all the things that may/did contribute if anyone is interested...

Bottom line - we want more natural ingredients that are not going to cause us harm. And we want a deodorant that actually works. How does Type A stack up?

First the Good

  • Type A is probably the easiest/least messy natural deodorant I have ever used. It is super easy to apply and does not leave stains or crumble.  
  • It smells nice. I used the "minimalist" scent and was so happy to be free of the "lavender" scents that most natural deodorants use. 
  • It reduces odor. I wore it for a few days during my regular life. I went out in the sun, I went for a run, I did my usual stuff. I didn't have an odor at all. I even felt fresh in the morning before my daily shower. 
  • It may have better ingredients than traditional deodorants. (see the Bad section for more info)

Now the Bad

  • The tube shape might make it difficult to get the last bit of deodorant out. I am not near the end yet so I am uncertain how much will be wasted. 
  • I did not notice a reduction in "sweating." After picking grapes outdoors (76F) for about 1/2 hour, my shirt was soaked under my armpits. 
  • This deodorant contains a mix of natural and synthetic ingredients. I don't know that we should actually care that an ingredient is synthetic vs natural, but it can not be lumped in with "all natural" deodorants when it has both. 
  • It says it doesn't contain aluminum but that is untrue. It contains zeolite which is a natural aluminosilicate mineral (basically aluminum sand!) that is traditionally used as a desiccant/odor absorber in horse barns and chicken coops. Is it natural? Yes. Is it aluminum free, no. Does the aluminum separate from the silica and absorb into our skin? I don't know - possibly not. Is it less toxic than aluminum zirconium trichorohydrex used in conventional deodorants? Maybe? I don't know.
  • It contains a lot of "grain starches" like corn starch, arrowroot powder, and tapioca starch. These are often used in other natural deodorants, but with the use of so many other fats and synthetic ingredients, I would be concerned about these starches absorbing into the blood stream rather than sitting on the surface to absorb wetness. 
  • It contains titanium dioxide which was recently implicated in diabetes and damage to the pancreas.

I would really love to see studies done to see how much of this deodorant (and all deodorants!) actually cross the skin barrier. Clearly - if you have recently taken a hot bath/shower (opening pores and possible soap residue breaking the skin barrier) or shaved under your arms (broken skin) then the absorption rate is increased. I wonder how different ingredients within the deodorants effect  the skin barrier and increase/decrease absorption.

I currently use a deodorant that contains aluminum, so the aluminum containing zeolite in the type A deodorant is my lowest concern - though I do question the labeling that clearly says "aluminum free."  I have enjoyed the odor control and the easy applicator. I did not see a reduction in wetness - though my usual antiperspirant is not perfect here either.

If you wonder why I am concerned about the grain starches - then I suggest you search "persorption" of raw starch to see what happens when raw grains cross the intestinal barrier (aka "leaky gut") and how that can lead to autoimmune diseases - like IBS, multiple sclerosis, food allergies, and more. If there is a chance that any of the other ingredients make the skin barrier more permeable (as soap does....) then it would be a risk that these molecules could cross into the bloodstream (where they do not belong!) and could cause an immune reaction leading to long term problems. At first glance, I do not see anything that I know to increase skin permeability - but this is the stuff I think the FDA should be testing.

In the meantime, Type A does list and discuss every ingredient used at typeadeodorant.com  None of my thoughts are meant to dissuade you from using or trying this new deodorant. I am using it. It works pretty well, smells nice, and is easy to use. I am just not convinced that it is better or worse than what is currently available though I do appreciate the convenience/smoothness of application. I also appreciate people trying to make something better.

Please join the discussion and leave a comment below. I would love to benefit from your knowledge/experience.

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Protecting Yourself from Expensive Vet Bills

Protecting Yourself from Expensive Vet Bills

You may think it is expensive taking your cat or dog to the veterinarian's office. However, this cost is nothing compared to what you would have to pay out-of-pocket to take your horse to the vet.

Actually, most vets make house calls for animals like horses and cows. Even so, these house visits come at a cost you might find too expensive to afford on a regular basis. You can protect yourself from expensive veterinarian bills by purchasing horse medical insurance , saving up cash, or using an equity line of credit to pay for these expenses and spare your cash flow.

Finding Out What is Covered

Horses can suffer from dozens of different illnesses and injuries just like people. They may be fine one minute and down sick the next. You never know when a seemingly healthy horse might succumb to some type of sickness or injury.

Before you invest in any type of medical coverage for your horse, you want to make sure its possible illnesses or injuries will be covered. The website lets you delve into the policy information so you can read for yourself what the terms and conditions of it is. Based on this information, you can then decide whether or not to buy the policy.

Having the policy in place could spare you from having to pay huge vet bills out of your ranch's operational cash. You can leave that money in place or put it back into your ranch's operations. The policy may pick up some or all of the horse's medical costs.

Another reason to invest in this policy involves helping your horses live longer and better. As sturdy as they look, horses are actually fragile creatures. Their lives might be shortened if they contract certain illnesses or injuries.

A medical policy for your horse could make sense when you want to protect your cash flow. It also would help the horses live better and longer and let you get the most out of your investment in them. You can read more about the policy information on the website today.

Stop throwing away lettuce, make your berries last longer, make your food healthier!!

It's not uncommon to find myself throwing out lettuce or spinach that I JUST opened a day or two earlier. It is beyond frustrating. Because of this, I rarely buy greens at the store. I grow my own and eat them only in season - from the ground to the table - and that's it. As you can imagine, there are pluses to this method but also major downfalls.

No spinach/lettuce/greens from August-May, except for a few microgreens I manage to eek out of my window pots.

As luck would have it, I came across the site of a very proactive mom that was trying to germ-free her home. Mostly viruses but also bacteria. I learned a lot from this lady - about laundry, germs in the sink, on the countertops, and even in bagged greens. Wow! If you want to saunter down that rabbit hole - here info is here: http://www.dranniesexperiments.com/

It turns out the triple washed spinach is still teeming with bacteria - and that's why it gets gross after just a day or two of being opened. Sad stuff.

So when I came across this fruit and vegetable wash - claiming to increase the shelf life of all produce BECAUSE it kills of bacteria/fungus/etc - I was ready to go for it.

I used it on grapes, blueberries, stawberries, ground cherries, apples, cantaloupe, tomatoes, greens, and mushrooms.

Did it improve the shelf life - Yes, I think so. I did not conduct super scientific studies, just my general sense was that they did last longer. I am, however, conditioned into using up my produce quickly and there were I times I meant to leave the tomatoes for weeks only to use them the next day....

I could feel/taste a difference when I washed grapes. This was super satisfying. No matter how much I washed grapes in the past, I could still taste "something" and it made me stop buying grapes for a long time. Even organic grapes. Most people don't realize how much copper and other junk are actually sprayed on organic grapes. It's a sad world out there.

But with this spray, I felt like they were actually clean and fresh. There was no chemical aftertaste, no artificial anything. They just tasted like fresh, clean grapes. This alone, makes me really happy. I will continue to buy this product. I like to go to orchards in the summer and fall to pick blueberries, strawberries, and apples - we are also building our own 40 acre orchard right now. It's important to have something - something natural - to increase shelf life and from what I've read on Dr. Annie's site - bacteria is a big part of the problem.

This spray gets a full 2 thumbs up from me - easy to use, all natural, does the job it says it will, makes my food cleaner and last longer! Love it! If you want to check it out - you can find it here.

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Ultimate 2018 Christmas List - Yes, it's time to get ready!!!

It's never to soon to start thinking up a list of things you might like for Christmas. I keep a running list all year long. Not because I'm a greedy sow!

But because there is a lot I want to do/try in life and sometimes that means I need tools/parts/equipment. So I keep track of things that might make my goals easier - or that I just plain need.

Here are some fun things I found that were unique and possibly really helpful to most people - something different from the everyday practical things and  beekeeping/pruning gear that I usually select.
Mason Jar Spout with glass jar included Imagine making a delicious blueberry sauce for your pancakes or a homemade ranch dressing. Of course we store this stuff in mason jars - they are convenient and perfectly sized. But they pour like crap. This might be the solution!
Conforming Wrench - This is the bomb for women or men! One wrench to rule them all! Seriously, this wrench can unscrew or tighten to any size bolt/nut. It conforms automatically.
Corner Clamp - I okay, I admit that this one will be used for beekeeping. I need it for putting together the bee box equipment. But if you build/repair furniture, frame pictures, or do any other woodwork where you need to make corners, this looks like an amazing time saver.
Pet Hair remover - you toss it in with your laundry and it is supposed to remove the pet hair. Does it work? I don't know. What if it does? It would be amazing to leave the house without cat hair on all of our clothes...
Magic hinge kit - Turn any bookcase or doorway into a secret passageway. LOVE THIS!!!
Stand up weeding tool - because at some point bending over to pick out every weed just gets old...

That's my Christmas list for this year. I think any/all of these products would be real life improvers - not just dust collectors!

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8 Real Ways to Lose Weight

8 Real Ways to Lose Weight

The world is full of fad diets and poorly-designed fitness routines. How can you ensure that your efforts aren't going to waste when you're trying to slim down? Here are eight real ways to lose weight.

1. Don't Throw Out Your Junk Food

Going "cold turkey" on junk food is just asking for trouble. Not only will you crave what you can't have, but you'll also start to resent the veggies and dip that you force yourself to consume instead. Try to taper off your junk food habit in small, manageable increments. Limit yourself to a certain amount of sugar per week, and lower your allowance over time.

2. Understand Your Nutritional Needs

This is especially important if you have allergies or food sensitivities. You might find a great seven-day diet plan on someone's blog, but their daily bread-and-pasta intake could contain too much gluten for your stomach. Make sure that you're planning your menu around your own dietary requirements and not another person's.

3. Find a Physical Hobby

Exercise is boring. This is why it's hard to stick to a regular gym routine. If you make it fun, however, you can start burning calories without the drudgery that you associate with working out. Look for new hobbies that incorporate a physical element. It doesn't matter if it's bungee jumping or horseback riding; as long as it gets you off the couch, it's worth pursuing.

4. Find Your Motivation Type

Some people need tough-love motivation that doesn't cut them any slack. Others prefer softer, more forgiving motivation that encourages them to recover from mistakes and get back on track after they mess up. There's no right or wrong answer when it comes to the type of motivation that works for you. You just have to figure out what you like and how you can incorporate it into your new diet.

5. Speed Up Your Metabolism

There are all kinds of simple, effective ways to boost your metabolism and burn calories at a higher rate than usual. For example, eating breakfast in the morning is said to kick-start your metabolism rather than starving yourself until lunch. You can also look into supplements that will get your metabolism working at prime efficiency. Visit Health365 for metabolism boosters and more information.

6. Join a Community

You've probably heard of weight loss support groups, but they're not the only things that can put you in contact with like-minded individuals. You can also join groups meant for first-time dancers, joggers, soccer players and marathon runners. You can join a beginner's yoga class. You can sign up for a casual sports league where everyone is just trying to have fun.

7. Create Small, Short-Term Goals

Rather than having vague, distant goals like "love my body," try to give yourself more regimented ones that will keep you focused on the immediate future. Have weight loss goals for the next week and month; have a certain number of pounds that you want to bench-press by the end of the season. You'll find it much easier to maintain your lifestyle changes when you can see all of the progress that you're making as you go.

8. Treat Yourself

In the same vein as the above, you can keep yourself motivated if you put incentives into your diet plan. For example, you might indulge in some expensive chocolate if you can meet your weight loss goals for the month, or you might splurge on a luxurious dress once you're able to fit in it. Give yourself something to look forward to as you lose weight.

These are just a few ways to drop the pounds and get the figure that you've always wanted. Some of them might go against popular dieting advice, but the truth isn't found in trends and fads. It's found by careful research and true dedication to losing weight. Good luck!

The Future Of Medicine And Communication

The Future Of Medicine And Communication

When technology starts to be put to good use in areas such as medicine, then everyone wins. It takes years for certain types of medical technology to get approved for general use, and for obvious reasons. As we look towards the future, there are new medical products on the horizon that make full use of the Internet. As more and more parts of the world are introduced to WiFi, the possibilities for medicine continue to grow.

Digital Medical Data

The stories about implanting special computer chips in everyone and putting their medical data on those chips have been around for years. While that still remains science fiction, reality has something similar but a bit more convenient. A digital medical ID bracelet is a device that can be plugged into any USB drive and call up a person's latest medical data. If someone passes out or becomes incapacitated in some way, one of these devices could save their life.

Remote Surgery

For now, the ability to have a surgeon perform a life-saving procedure in emergency situations is something that can only be done in person. Technology is being developed that would allow surgeons to perform procedures through remote devices powered by the Internet. There are a lot of bugs to work out in this kind of technology and it may be decades before we see an actual working model. But if this technology ever gets off the ground, imagine the good it could do.


An exoskeleton is a mechanical device that is worn on the outside of the body, but it can control paralyzed limbs. This sort of technology is closer to being a reality than people may think, and it would give people who have lost the ability to walk a chance at an independent life again.

The future of medical technology is exciting and hopeful. As technology in general continues to advance, the possibilities that open up in the world of medicine become almost mind-boggling.

Making Dried Flower Bouquets from Black Eyed Susans

This week we have been busy gathering black eyed susan flowers. I am attempting to dry them out and turn them into a beautiful bouquet or unique stems to accent a dried flower centerpiece.

They are so bright and cheery when they are fresh. They apparently keep as a cut flower for at least 6-10 days. That's sounds great, but I'm not sure about the drying results.
They turned out a little haggard in my opinion. Any advice? This is all new to us so I would love any tips or tricks. Please comment below.

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How to kill japanese beetles that are eating your plants!!

The Best Way to Kill Japanese Beetles - Easy and Without Touching Them!

Japanese beetles are always defoliating my beans, raspberries and linden trees. For years, I would go around my plants and smoosh the bugs between my fingers. Gross, I know and only marginally effective. Why? Because Japanese beetles jump off the leaves just as you are about to squeeze them.

There has got to be a better way....and there is! Today I came home to find JBs defoliating my cherry tree.

They were literally destroying it. So I grabbed a little bucket, put in a drop or two of soap and filled it halfway with water. The water just has to be barely soapy. You can see by my pail that there wasn't even suds.

I did this for a while and at first I maybe caught only 25% of the bugs I went after. I was tapping the tree with a paint brush to get the bugs to fall off. Some would fall but the rest would fly away. By the end, I had perfected it and was getting 80% of the bugs I went after. The trick - just touch them. They fall down when you touch them to get away - they fly more often if they are disturbed in any other way.

Plus - I found that having a shallower dish helps. I was using a tall bucket with just a bit of water at the bottom. Some of the JBs had the opportunity to fly back out before hitting the water. I did find the handle on the bucket to be a nice touch when trying to do multiple things at once but I either need to swap to a shallower bowl or fill the bucket with deeper water. Either way - the tree is now free of bugs (and I have went out every hour to grab any newbies.) Use this tip if you are being harassed by Japanese beetles. They can not fly out of the water and they drown.

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Linden : Basswood Tea - How to make it, what it tastes like, is it healthy?

The Linden (also called Basswood) tree is full of benefits. It's a big gorgeous, native tree that produces heart shaped leaves and oodles of highly scented blossoms. Bees love this tree! People always ask me if I have ever made tea from the linden flowers and until this summer, I hadn't.  
How do you make it? Super easy - just gather the blossoms and steep in hot water for 5-10 minutes. Easy. It's a pretty yellow colored tea and tastes almost exactly like red raspberry leaf tea and all other "natural" teas except that it has a very floral scent. The scent is pretty but it's overwhelming.

I saved some of the flowers (I just left them to dry on the counter and they were dry within a few weeks) to use in the winter, but I prefer the more neutral scent of red raspberry leaf tea and probably won't use linden tea again unless I find out it has amazing health benefits. I will save the blossoms for the bees.

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