Non-Toxic Sunscreen For You & Your Family

After a long, seemingly endless winter, the warmer weather is finally upon us in the East coast. I took my daughters to the park for a few hours and found myself realizing I better remember to start packing the sunscreen in my bag! We all know sunscreen is important because it protects us from dangerous UV rays that can cause issues like skin cancer, age spots and more. However, I find that most people are unaware of the dangers lurking in typical mainstream sunscreen brands.

Sunscreen can either be mineral based or chemical based. Knowing that what we apply to our skin is immediately absorbed into our bloodstream in under a minute, I choose to use mineral based, more natural sunscreen products which use zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide. Most of the brand names on the market are chemically based and include a combination of two to six of these active ingredients: oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene, homosalate and octinoxate.

If you want to check the safety of your sunscreen, www.ewg.org is a great resource. You can search by brand and the website will tell you how toxic your product rates on a scale, as well as indicate what some of the potential side effects of the ingredients are. Some of my favorite brands include Badger, Poofy Organics, Babyganics and ThinkBaby/ThinkSport.

So before you slather your loved ones up with sunscreen this summer, be sure to check the safety of your products. You can get great protection for your skin without the nasty toxic chemicals!

DISCLAIMER:  The information contained on this site is not provided by medical professionals and is provided for informational purposes only.  The information on this site is not meant to substitute consulting with your podiatrist, doctor or other health care professional. The information available on or through this site is in no way intended to diagnose, influence treatment or cure any foot or other health problems nor is it a substitute for the services or advice of a podiatrist, physician, or health professional.  You should always consult a physician licensed in your state in all matters relating to your health.

Getting a HEALTHY Tan

Most of us love that healthy, sun-kissed glow that comes with summer. The question is, how do you get that glow while avoiding some of the risks of skin cancer? As a teenager I used to go to the tanning salon quite a bit (cringe) to maintain my tan. Now, we are bombarded with commercials, articles and other media that preach the dangers of excessive sun exposure. So how do we find a healthy balance? How do we get that glow without putting ourselves at risk? Here are a few tips to help you get that healthy sun-kissed look….

Repair The Damage

  • If you have been guilty of hitting the tanning salon, stop ASAP.
  • Repair your skin with natural treatments containing vitamin A and vitamin E to help regenerate skin.
  • Regularly exfoliate your skin to remove damaged cells.

Manage Your Unprotected Sun Exposure

  • You can spend 20 minutes a day in the sun, unprotected and without sunscreen. This will help you get some vitamin D naturally rather than having to supplement. After 20 minutes, apply sunscreen to be sure you are protected.
  • Be sure to reapply after swimming and/or excessive sweating.
  • Take breaks in the shade. Don’t bake yourself on the beach for hours straight. Stay active, enjoy the outdoors, but be sure to give your skin a break from the sun every hour our two.

Choose Natural Sunscreens and/or Protective Clothing

  • Opt for sunscreens that have natural ingredients to avoid lathering yourself in dangerous chemicals.
  • Mineral based sunscreens that contain zinc oxide or titanium oxide are the best options.
  • Some of my favorite brands include: Babyganics, Badger and ThinkSport or ThinkBaby.
  • Opt for long sleeve beachwear that contains SPF. This will help you protect yourself without having to bother with applying sunscreen in those areas.

Organic Self Tanners

  • Organic self tanners are a great alternative to give you that glow without needing any sun exposure at all.
  • Be sure to wash hands thoroughly after applying to avoid getting “orange” hands.
  • Be sure to exfoliate before applying self tanner.
  • Choose a daily face lotion that contains SPF30 as well as natural tint to give you a bit of a glow.

DISCLAIMER:  The information contained on this site is not provided by medical professionals and is provided for informational purposes only.  The information on this site is not meant to substitute consulting with your podiatrist, doctor or other health care professional. The information available on or through this site is in no way intended to diagnose, influence treatment or cure any foot or other health problems nor is it a substitute for the services or advice of a podiatrist, physician, or health professional.  You should always consult a physician licensed in your state in all matters relating to your health.

Become the Ultimate Spring Jogger

By: Larysa DiDio, Guest Blogger for Aetrex

The temps are warming up just in time for your cabin fever and spring fever to merge!  Studies show that exercising outdoors not only burns more calories, but also boosts your mood like crazy.  Jogging is one of the best activities to help shed excess winter weight in the fastest amount of time.  Here are six tips to becoming the best (Spring) jogger you can be:

  1. Dress in Layers.It may look warm outside from your living room, but looks can be deceiving.  Chances are the temps are still a little bit nippy and the wind may be whipping.  To keep yourself from running back inside as soon as your feet hit the concrete, be sure to bundle up in easy to remove layers.  Usually a light thermal under layer, a breathable heavier layer and a wind resistant shell are what you need.  You’ll get warm fast and when you do, you’ll be able to easily tie a layer around your waist until your cool down at the end.
  1. Wear Proper Footwear. If you live in colder climates, the onset of spring doesn’t necessarily mean the absence of slippery spots.  Also, winter weather along with salt and ice may have left the running terrain less than ideal.  Watch out for residual ice and pot holes, and make sure that your sneakers are snugly fitting and are supportive.  My favorite brand of sneaker is Aetrex.  Their sneakers contain an orthotic footbed for support, balance, and alignment and memory foam cushioning for comfort. Plus, Aetrex shoes have advanced technology that help avoid any smelly odors.
  1. Wear Sunscreen and Sunglasses.  Even though it’s still a bit chilly, the sun and wind can wreak havoc on your skin and eyes.  Protect your skin with hypoallergenic sunscreen that doesn’t clog your pores and protects against both UVA and UVB rays.  Be sure that your product has an SPF of over 30.  Additionally, be sure to wear lightweight, protective sunglasses that give you protection from harmful sun rays, and also from biting winds and debris on roads and trails.
  1. Go When it’s Warmest.  I usually recommend that runners head outdoors first thing in the morning to keep their motivation high and establish a schedule.  However, when it’s a bit chilly and dark, I recommend checking out the forecast and go when it’s the warmest and the brightest.  It’ll help you enjoy your run so much more!
  1. Start Slow.  Be kind to your body.  Start with a nice easy jog of one to three miles, adding some bits of walking if necessary.  If you haven’t been running outdoors (or even on a treadmill), be sure to have fun and start light.  Gradually get yourself back into it by adding 10% total mileage per week.
  1. Motivate yourself With an Event. Everyone needs a goal or a gentle shove and sometimes, signing up for a race is what your body and head need for motivation!  Google local races and plan on training for two months before the big day.  Enlist the help of a friend or family member to help keep yourself motivated.  Need some help with training?  Check out Couch To 5K .