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The SLN Blog

Fashion & Climate Change - The New Age of Circular Fashion

Is it possible to buy fashion without compromising the environment? To answer this, it's important to understand what sustainable fashion truly means. A comprehensive study on the environmental impact of apparel and footwear industries, demonstrated that over 8 percent of greenhouse gases can be attributed to the fashion industry and if things don't change, by 2050 this will rise to 25 percent of the entire global carbon budget! So, HOW does fashion impact climate change? The magnitude of carbon emissions take place at the mills where the fibers are spun into yarn and weaved to make fabrics. More than 75 percent of the carbon footprint in the entire lifecycle of clothing manufacturing takes place there. This means a company is only doing “sustainability” if they are lowering the carbon footprint of their mills. With the enormous wastefulness of runway show sets, luxury markets, and...

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First Major Legislation the House Will Take Up in 2020

Government is always slow to roll however, the EPA knows PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) can increase toxic body burden and cause adverse health effects, including developmental harm to fetuses, testicular and kidney cancers, liver tissue damage, immune system or thyroid effects, and changes in cholesterol. The new year brings continued momentum to protect people and the environment from PFAS. The first major legislation the House will take up in 2020 is a bill that would require the EPA to regulate PFAS, which are toxic chemicals contaminating U.S. municipal and private water supplies. The House will consider a bill on Jan. 9 (H.R.535) that would push the EPA to create nationwide protective measures against poly- and perfluoroalkyl substances, and could vote on passage Jan. 10. PFAS are found in products like nonstick pans (e.g. “Teflon”), waterproof jackets, and carpets to repel water, grease, and stains. They’re also...

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Cultured Vegetables Help Relieve Symptoms of Food Poisoning and Stomach Flu

I am a huge advocate for eating cultured/fermented vegetables on a regular basis partly because of my upbringing (kimchi was a staple in our house), but also because I know when food poisoning hits, 8-10 tablespoons of cultured veggies and/or their juice throughout the day is the only thing that makes it better. The probiotics (good bacteria) in cultured foods work to attack the bad bacteria so eating cultured veggies during a bout of stomach flu or food poisoning can alleviate symptoms and help you get better, faster. My go-to's are sauerkraut and kimchi. Not only are cultured vegetables great for relieving stomach issues, incorporating them into your daily diet can prevent bad bacteria from infecting your body to begin with.  It’s estimated that roughly 70% - 80% of your immune system is in your gut so introducing good bacteria into the...

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What is Tencel? - Why Fibers Matter in Sustainable Fashion

Almost every industry right now is looking to reduce their environmental footprint, and the fashion industry is no exception. Designers are choosing eco-friendly alternatives such as organic cotton, bamboo, and hemp to reduce their environmental impact however, many people haven't heard of Tencel. Tencel is the brand name for sustainably grown and harvested lycocell fiber and is produced by Lenzing Fibers, headquartered in Austria. Lycocell is a type of rayon made from the cellulose fiber of dissolved wood pulp and can be used for any type of clothing including denim to silky garments. Tencel is an extremely eco-friendly material and when compared to cotton, it has a significantly smaller environmental impact, requiring 10 to 20 times less water and absolutely no pesticides. The fibers originate from renewable raw wood. These certified biobased fibers are biodegradable and compostable.  They are then manufactured by dissolving wood...

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$300-Million Funded Research Strongly Links Children's Chronic Disease to Toxic Exposure

Research funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the Science to Achieve Results (STAR) grants program and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) demonstrates that children in the U.S. are at high risk for chronic disease as a result of exposures to environmental toxicants. This 300-million-dollar funded research program identified toxic chemical exposure as playing a strong role in the development of asthma, obesity, ADHD, and cancer. Outcomes of these studies highlighted how toxic body burden in children not only puts them at risk for poorer health and learning disabilities, but can set the trajectory of health throughout their adult life.  I encourage everyone to read the full impact report to better understand just how much our environment plays a role in our health, not just in this lifetime, but for generations after us. This research, collected...

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Researchers Conclude This Inexpensive Action Can Protect You This Flu Season

Dr. Taylor, a pediatric oncologist, and her team of colleagues studied patients in a unit of a hospital to isolate factors associated with patient infections. While factors such as hand hygiene and number of visitors influenced infection rates, one factor demonstrated the biggest association with infection and that was.....DRY AIR. The research team was able to associate low relative humidity of indoor air with higher infection rates. “When we dry the air out, droplets and skin flakes carrying viruses and bacteria are launched into the air, traveling far and over long periods of time. The microbes that survive this launching tend to be the ones that cause healthcare-associated infections,” said Taylor. “Even worse, in addition to this increased exposure to infectious particles, the dry air also harms our natural immune barriers which protect us from infections." Since this study was...

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Baths Shouldn't Burn - Turn Your Bath Up a Notch, Safely

Fall is the perfect time for bath soaking as the air gets drier and skin cries out for exfoliation and hydration. I love taking baths albeit sparingly given the amount of water needed, so when I do make the effort I want to give my mind and body a memorable experience. When my kids were little, bath time was such a special time and I would notice how their challenging days would float away with the bath water. Moods would be completely shifted with new attitudes of calm and relaxation. Although I never found time in my earlier years to use this resetting practice, I now can't imagine not having bath time.  It has become a healthy practice that I look forward to twice a month. Aromatherapy, also referred to as Essential Oil (EO) therapy, is the use of naturally...

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Choose Your Super Power - 7 Popular Types of Meditation

“Breathing in, I calm my body. Breathing out, I smile.Dwelling in the present moment, I know this is a wonderful moment.”~Thich Nhat Hahn, Being Peace The widespread practice of meditation has gotten a lot of hype over the last few years because of its ability to increase mindfulness, calmness, physical relaxation, psychological balance, and enhancing overall health and well-being. Meditation is a mind and body practice that focuses on the interactions among the brain, mind, and body. Some research suggests that meditation may physically change the brain and body and could potentially help to improve many health problems and promote healthy behaviors. There are many types of meditation, but most have four elements in common: 1. Being in a quiet location with as few distractions as possible 2. Comfortable posture (sitting, lying down, walking) 3. A focus of attention (a...

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'Toxic Beauty' Film Explores How Cosmetics Are Making Us Sick

"In 1983, world renowned epidemiologist, Dr. Daniel Cramer, linked Johnson & Johnson’s baby powder to ovarian cancer. Since the 1960’s, J&J allegedly knew the risks and did nothing. In 2004, Dr. Phillipa Darbre, a UK scientist, found parabens, a chemical preservative in many cosmetics, in breast tissue. In 2018, the National Institute of Health’s sister study linked breast cancer to personal care product use." 'Toxic Beauty' is a documentary film that highlights products marketed throughout the past century that have significantly impacted health. The film discusses the frustrating reality that regulations haven't been updated since the 1930s, and follows the class action lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson and the women affected who are seeking justice while fighting ovarian cancer. The film also includes dialogue on toxic body burden experienced by all of us, and features Boston University medical student, Mymy Nguyen, who measures her...

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Can Medical Care Exist Without Plastic?

As healthcare is experiencing a technology crossover, the industry is poised to start addressing ecological sustainability. This is a burgeoning area that will require early adopters to lead the way. The environmental non-profit Health Care Without Harm estimates that the world’s healthcare industry contributes just over four percent of the world’s emissions. Most of this stems from round-the-clock heating and cooling. That’s the same level of emissions produced by more than five coal-fired power plants in a year!! The single-use nature of plastics used in clinical settings is the first area to tackle however,"Increasingly, say medical care providers, the unfettered use of plastic is conflicting with a doctor’s promise to do no harm, but in facilities awash in blood and pathogens, is avoiding plastic even possible?" Read More Here: Can medical care exist without plastic?

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