Letter From Lorna
Bottle Blonde or Toxic Dark Dyes?
Multiple Sclerosis risk reduced...
The Hormones of Weight Loss
Undress Your Stress: Support your Adrenal Glands
Newsletter Mailed to You

It has been an exciting couple of months with the media publishing new research validating much of what I have been saying for the last decade. Finally there is confirmation that ingredients in our deodorant play a role in breast cancer. Researchers reported that parabens, used as antimicrobial preservatives in underarm deodorants and antiperspirants and in a wide range of other cosmetics and foods were found in 18 out of 20 breast tumor samples tested. The parabens also have inherent estrogenic and other hormone related activity (increased progesterone receptor gene expression). As estrogen is a major factor in the growth and development of the majority of human breast cancers, it has been previously suggested that parabens and other chemicals in underarm cosmetics may contribute to the rising incidence of breast cancer.

Don't wear deodorant when you are at home. Use natural deodorants found at the health food store free of toxins. Some women have reported that laser hair removal under their arms reduced the amount of perspiration and odor from the armpit. Steam baths and saunas also reduce odor and perspiration over time. Women have to start evaluating what is in their cosmetics as well. Think about what we do every morning. We enter the shower and use cleansing gels and scrubs, shampoo, conditioner, and shaving lotions then we get out and cover our skin from head to toe with lotion so that we do not wrinkle. Now we apply our makeup; gel, mousse and spray our hair and then spray on some perfume; we apply our deodorant and encase our breasts into our bras. By the time we leave the bathroom in the morning we are toxic with all the chemicals in these products and our overworked liver has to start house cleaning.

Go to the Environmental Working Groups website to read more on the toxins in cosmetics.

Bottle Blonde or Toxic Dark Dyes? Back to Top

If you color your hair being a blonde might just be better for your health. Studies have shown that dark hair dyes contribute to our cancer risk. Phenylenediamine is one agent found in the coloring that acts like estrogen in the body and is associated with increased cancer risk.

Tongzhang Zheng of Yale University claims women who have dyed their hair since before 1980 have a higher rate of non-hodgkins lymphoma, a cancer of the immune system. Bottle blonds had less cancer than women who dyed their hair brown or black. Most permanent dyes are based on mixing two bottles of ingredients which cause a reaction and new chemical by-products not originally present in either bottle. Zheng said this reaction can produce carcinogens.

Go to your health food store and purchase natural hair dyes. They have improved dramatically over the last decade and provide wonderful rich colors and healthy hair.

Multiple Sclerosis risk reduced by simply
taking Vitamin D.

More reasons to take vitamin D:

The Hormones of Weight Loss
Back to Top

If one of your New Year's resolutions was to lose a few pounds and you have already eaten your way through the first 60 days you are not alone. Long term studies show that one to two thirds of weight lost through dieting is regained within one year and almost all weight is regained within five years - disheartening information if you are trying to lose weight by restricting calories. Yet we know if we are packing around too many pounds that we must lose weight or face cardiovascular disease, Type 2 diabetes, cancer, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, gastric reflux and many other health complications. Although most people view weight loss with the goal of fitting into a smaller clothing size being fat takes years off our life and the emotional, physical and societal costs are exorbitant. I spent most of 2003 writing a new book on weight loss called The CLA PlusNatural Diet due out fall of 2004 and while wading through references I was excited by the research showing how the food we eat, how our liver functions and certain hormones including insulin, thyroid, estrogen, serotonin, leptin and cortisol determine whether we are skinny or fat. By understanding how these hormones work we can regulate our waist size more effectively.

Sour side of Insulin
Insulin, a hormone secreted by the pancreas, may be the main culprit contributing to our 'fatness'. The standard excessively high carbohydrate, low protein diet is disrupting our body's ability to regulate blood sugar adequately. When we have too much insulin being pumped out trying to reduce abnormally high blood sugar we inevitably gain weight, become fat and our cells become very resistant to insulin and fat loss. Eating small protein rich meals and snacks throughout the day with lots of green vegetables insulin will be managed.

Another deadly aspect of high insulin is that it increases the secretion of cortisol, our stress hormone. High cortisol causes a corresponding drop in the hormone dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA).DHEA, among other actions, helps to increase muscle mass. For fat loss we know that more muscle mass causes increased fat burning and a reduction in insulin. Chronic stress also causes our fat cells to become resistant to fat loss especially fat cells around our abdomen. Cortisol activates fat cells - all fat cells - to store fat! But those that are called central fat cells found mainly deep in the abdominal wall have four times the cortisol receptors on their cell membranes. Each time you are stressed the cortisol-fat mechanism turns on and your body stores more fat. Relax, have a massage, learn to say no, walk everyday, do deep breathing exercises while at work at your computer, dance and surround yourself with people you love and who love you. Your fat cells deserve it.

Body Fat and Leptin
Leptin, a hormone produced by body fat, is critical in telling the body when to eat and when we are satisfied. Scientists have learned that in some people the message of satiety is not heard and the fat cells send out more and more leptin causing resistance to leptin and increased food cravings and the desire to continue eating. In other people leptin levels are low due to zinc deficiency. Take a multivitamin with minerals like MULTISMART to ensure you get adequate zinc and other essential nutrients.

Serotonin Satisfaction
Serotonin, a neurotransmitter in the brain made from the amino acids found in proteins, is also involved in notifying your brain that you are satisfied and can put down your fork. Low serotonin causes depression, obesity, lethargy, a preference for refined carbohydrates and overeating because the brain senses it is starving. Those that are hyper-secretors of cortisol exhibit suppressed serotonin levels leading to problems managing weight. When we diet and restrict protein-rich calories our serotonin levels also plummet. Use 5-HTP 50mg three times per day to increase your serotonin levels naturally. 5-HTP has been researched and found effective for weight loss, mild depression, PMS and general mood elevation.

Thyroid to Go
Low thyroid called hypothyroidism affects approximately 30 percent of the population in Canada. Low thyroid reduces your body's fat burning rate, and causes fatigue inhibiting your get-up-and-go.

Fatty Liver
Excess weight around the middle, whites of the eyes that are dotted with fatty yellow bumps, fatty cysts and skin mottled with 'age spots' are all signs of a congested liver or more commonly called a 'fatty liver'. Clogged bile ducts, inadequate secretion of bile, not enough bile, or an overwhelmed or congested liver from too many prescription drugs, toxins or alcohol can all contribute to a fatty liver. These factors cause our liver to inadequately break down or emulsify fats and our fat cells to store too much fat, promoting weight gain or resistance to fat loss. Bombarded with hundreds of toxins daily from the food we eat and drink, the air we breathe, and the internal chemicals produced as a by-product of daily cellular processes the liver has a non stop job of detoxification.

Estrogen Belly
Any disruption of the liver detoxification pathway contributes to excesses or imbalances in hormones, toxins and our ability to lose weight. The liver is also responsible for conjugating or combining estrogens and other steroid hormones, certain drugs and chemical compounds. Too much estrogen also called estrogen dominance is one reason why women have a difficult time losing fat around the abdominal area. It is also the reason why men tend to develop a 'beer belly and breasts in their forties and beyond. A decreased rate of estrogen excretion via liver detoxification contributes to what we commonly call "estrogen belly" which is simply too much fat around the middle promoted by too much estrogen due to faulty excretion of excess estrogens.

Too much fat on our body also increases our estrogen levels as fat cells are a storage site for estrogen. Contributing to our fatness is the fact that fat cells also manufacture estrogen. This sets up a viscous cycle of too many fat cells manufacturing and storing too much estrogen which creates high levels of estrogen which maintains our increased fat.

To correct estrogen metabolism in the liver and our fat cells we should include the following nutrients in our fat loss program: indole-3-carbinol 150mg, calcium D-glucarate 150mg, curcumin 50mg, DIM 50mg, rosemary leaf extract 25 mg, and sulphoraphane 100mcg. Or keep it simple and take ESTROSMART.

Scientists have unlocked the secret to fighting fat. Diets don't work. We must eat to ensure healthy hormones, walk, eat less and laugh. I developed a natural healthy eating plan combined with nutrients that jump start your body's metabolism while addressing your hormone challenges. We were fortunate enough to have Tanya, a health food store owner in Port Colborne, be interviewed about using the CLA PlusNatural Weight loss program by Women's World magazine in January.

For more information on CLA Plusgo to

This article was partially published in Alive magazine February 2004.

Here is what consumer's have to say about the program:

"I think CLA PlusNatural Diet Program by Lorna Vanderhaeghe is a fantastic product. So far I have lost 7 lbs. I like the fact that it is 100% natural and also a non-stimulant. Not only does it really curb your appetite but it also seems to keep your blood sugar stable, enabling you to completely avoid that shaky, hungry feeling you normally get when you try to follow a diet. I have recommended it to many people."
J.B., BC

Undress Your Stress: Support your Adrenal Glands Back to Top
By Karen Jensen, N.D.

"Adaptability is probably the most distinctive characteristic of life."-Hans Selye, M.D.

Stress is a very broad and often misunderstood concept. Put very simply, stress is what a person feels when life's demands exceeds the individuals ability to meet or adapt to those demands. All living creatures are subject to stressors of internal and external origins and all respond to these stressors according to their individual mental, emotional, physical and spiritual stamina. In acute stress and in healthy individuals the stress hormones go back to normal once stress abates, however stressors in today's world stress seem unrelenting. When the stressors overload the stress adaptive ability symptoms and disease can occur.

Stress and the Adrenal Glands

The adrenals release various stress response hormones that guide our whole body's reaction to a stressor - the famous "fight-or-flight" response. They are thus the organs responsible for the "front-line" work of adaptation to stress. Our ability to adapt to stress depends upon optimal function of the adrenal glands and in particular the regulation of the main stress hormone, cortisol, the "hallmark of stress". Excess or deficiencies of this crucial hormone can cause a variety of physical symptoms, which if not treated, will lead to more serious chronic disease states and even death.

Earlier symptoms of adrenal stress include: fatigue, depression, cold hands or feet, dizziness, low back pain, asthma, allergies, sweet cravings, hormonal imbalances, irritability, headaches, colitis and other gastrointestinal problems, skin problems, and arthritis and other inflammatory conditions. Research has shown that cortisol imbalances lead to blood sugar problems, weight gain, compromised immune function, infertility, chronic fatigue, bone loss, high triglycerides levels and heart disease. More recently studies have shown that breast cancer, memory loss and sleep deprivation are also associated with increased cortisol levels.

Most adrenal conditions are due to sub-optimal function and it is therefore difficult to diagnose mild to moderate adrenal compromise by using the standard lab cortisol tests. A more sensitive test that measures saliva cortisol has been used in stress research for over 10 years. This and other adrenal assessment tools are available through your naturopathic physician.

In my clinical practice I see a continual increase in the incidence of stress related conditions resulting from sub-optimal adrenal function. As a result I am continuously looking for nutrients and herbs to help support these little glands that are so crucial to optimal health.

ADRENASMART is a new product, contains the following herbs that have been proven to support stress reactions and normalize adrenal function.

Rhodiola (Rhodiola rosea) increases resistance of the body to chemical, biological and physical stressors. It has been proven to regulate the heart, enhance mental and physical performance, support the immune and hormonal systems and to have anti-depressive and anti-tumor activity.

Suma (Pfaffia Paniculata) is considered a regenerative tonic for the nervous, reproductive and digestive systems and is used to treat hormonal disorders, sexual dysfunction, sterility, arteriosclerosis, fatigue, diabetes, cancer and many types of stress.

Siberian Ginseng (Eleutherococcus senticosus) has been shown to normalize reactions to physical and mental stress and increase the body's ability to withstand adverse conditions such as heat, noise, increases in workload and physical endurance. It promotes vital energy, reduces frequency of illness, protects against environmental pollutants, regulates blood-sugar, protects liver, and supports optimal adrenal function.

Schizandra Berries (Schizandra chinensis) is commonly used as a general tonic and to promote liver health and counters the effects of stress and fatigue. Studies show it has normalizing affects in cases of insomnia, nervousness and improves physical endurance, mental capability and is liver protective. It has also been found to have antioxidant and anti-bacterial affects.

Ashwagandha (Withana Somnifera) is used primarily as a general tonic to increase energy and to improve overall health and longevity. Studies have proven the powerful anti-stress effects, immune modulating, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor properties. It improves sexual performance and has calming affects on the central nervous system, ADRENASMART is to be taken to prevent stress related illness on a regular basis and when there is an increase in stress in your life you can increase the dose.

Recommended daily dosage: 2 to 4 capsules

Vitamin C can support adrenal function and decrease high cortisol levels.

B Vitamin Complex especially B1 and B6 helps to normalize the cortisol rhythm.

Zinc, in doses as low as 25 mg can lower adrenal cortisol output by 40-60% for durations of at least 4 hours.

Take MULTISMART to ensure you have all the cofactors necessary for healthy adrenal function.

The main remedy for stress adaptation is balance in your life; time for family and friends, rest, exercise, healthy eating, play and laugher, spiritual exercise (prayer, meditation, communing with nature, etc) balanced with work. The secret to health and happiness is our ability to adapt to the circumstances with which we live.