Ana Ladd-Griffin Enters The Red Tent

I’d like to share this entry that my senior detox counselor, Ana Ladd-Griffin, posted on the Natalia Rose Institute membership community today on her Q&A area. It is such a timely and popular topic. If this topic interests you, keep an eye out for an audio interview on the reproductive system, menstruation, and fertility in a few weeks, which we will also post here on the blog area. I trust you will find Ana’s insights very enlightening. Thanks for sharing, Ana!

Marie writes: “I stopped taking the pill a little over a year ago, and started the Detox 4 Women meal plan. I have only gotten my period once since then. I’m a little worried. Why is this? And when will it return? My husband and I want to start trying to get pregnant.”

There are several parts to answering this question. First, I want to address oral contraceptives, as well as all hormone-based contraceptives (rings, shots, etc. I am keeping pharmaceutical brand names out of this). I do not wish to contradict medical advise; I am not a doctor. However, my experience with many many women dealing with the same issue is that after stopping a hormone-based contraceptive, the menstrual cycle can take a long time to return to normal. I have seen it take over two years. My own cycle took even longer to return to normal after stopping the pill, and this was even before I began to cleanse and work with Natalia. After only a few months, most medical professionals will recommend that you get back on some form of birth control to bring your period back. This decision is at your discretion. I only ask that you make an educated and informed decision. This is a fact: almost all of my clients who stop the pill while cleansing do not see a full return to normal menstruation for at least one year.

Secondly, I’d like to address what is really happening in our bodies when we menstruate. Yes, it’s the body preparing a womb for a potential fertilized egg as we’ve been taught. But there is a second component. Our bodies are storing toxins in menstrual fluids so that they will be kept away from our baby. The release of blood-like fluids every month is a powerful detox! The body stores the toxins so they cannot interfere with pregnancy, and then releases them when no egg is fertilized. Men should be so lucky! This is a detoxifying monthly function that is specific only to the female body, and is a great aid in mobilizing toxins we ingest and encounter through poor air quality, compromised water, etc. However, this is why periods have become such a trial for us. They are starting in younger and younger girls, lasting for up to eight days, smelling strongly, and are accompanied by intense emotions and cramping. This is the result of our toxic load! We can look forward to shorter, lighter, cleaner, and less emotional visits from Aunt Flo as our bodies become cleaner. It is sometimes said that a perfectly clean body will menstruate without a fluid release (read: no toxins were stored for removal). I’m not sure this is possible in the modern world, but it illustrates the profound change that comes with cellular cleansing.

The third issue in this question is the effect of the cleansing program itself on the female cycle. Just like every other system in our bodies, the reproductive system is profoundly effected by our toxic load. All of you out there who struggle with poly-cystic ovarian syndrome, PMDD, uteran fibroids, etc. understand better than anyone. As we begin to awaken and release toxic matter, these systems will slowly start to reset, and regulate themselves without the influence of bacteria, carbonic gas, yeasts and fungus, and environmental estrogens, not to mention the influx of animal-sized doses of hormones that make up the biomass of conventional meats (and dairy).

This is not an overnight process. But please rest assured, a clean body can perfectly regulate every system better than we could ever have dreamed. Patience, and progress. Keep moving forward knowing you are doing the absolute best thing for your reproductive system, and that all of the issues you experience will come out in the wash (literally!). You need to know that this detoxifying regime will never harm your body’s cycles, but will only help them to become perfectly regulated. You also must throw out any timeframe you have put upon your process. We have the stored toxins of our lifetime, combined with the damages of generations of accumulation on our lineage.

I would never make a 6-month, yearlong, or even five-year promise to you. Some of these things run dark and deep. Perseverance and trust are what you need now, not false timelines to keep you motivated with baseless information. You know this intuitively. Think about all that we have done to this planet, reflected in our poor bodies. Could you fix the problem with a 10-day juice fast? Never. It’s time to set aside your panic and deadlines, and fall in love with the process. The promise I will make is this: If you are cleansing your body, you are walking in the right direction and taking the only possible steps toward restoring your body to the vitality it deserves.

Natalia has said what I am about to say before, and please forgive me if I am not as delicate as I could be with these issues. I have the deepest empathy for all of us. Reproductive issues are the result of a failing planet. We are a true reflection of the clogged and poisoned waterways, the smog, and the deforestation. We cannot escape the damages we continue to do to fragile ecosystems, and fragile reproductive systems. This is the mess we have made: many men and women have become so toxic that their bodies decline to produce viable offspring. Men have testicular cancer, prostate cancer, and erectile dysfunction. Women have ovarian cysts, uterine tumors, and devastating monthly cycles.

These are the facts, and the only right step we can now take is the start to clean up what we’ve done. We have all played a part in this destruction, and now we have a chance to be heroes to the generations to come. Keep this in mind as you’re cleansing. The female and male reproductive organs press directly against our overworked, impacted, clogged colons and intestines. What more evidence do you need?

Last, I just want to give a nod to the importance of pre-conception cleansing. If you can give your son or daughter a clean nine-month home, clean breast milk, and superior DNA blueprints that come with this lifestyle of cellular cleansing, you are already winning parenting awards. There is no greater gift.

Ana has addressed the following subjects on the membership community for those of you who are interested:

  • Menstruation
  • Simple and Delicious Summer Dinner Options
  • Simple and Delicious Winter Dinner Options
  • Birth Control
  • Ideal Food Combining
  • Wine
  • Grain, Sprouted Grain Bread
  • Organic Butter and Cream
  • Juice Fasting
  • Soy
  • Laxative Products
  • Coconuts
  • Eating Out
  • Traveling
  • Colonics
  • Enemas
  • Nuts and Seeds
  • Detox Symptoms

What I’m Eating Now

I know there are lots of raw-food enthusiasts who encourage a 100% raw-vegan and even fruitarian diet all year-round. Of course many of them live in Florida, Costa Rica, and Southern California and do not experience the winters that those of us nearer the other pole do!

I can only speak from my experience. As someone who has been living this way for ten years, what I have found is that eating all raw and even juice-fasting throughout the cold months, while certainly doable, requires enormous discipline (discipline that is not always necessary for cellular cleansing and improvement).

It’s true, some of my best and longest fasts have been in December, but it took all I had to commit to them. (As most fasters know, it’s those first 24 to 48 hours of the fast that are the most difficult. After that, if you’re keeping your intestine cleared of the accumulated and awakened rubbish and by-products, each day gets easier and easier.) In addition, there are a handful of days each winter when I eat only winter fruits, bananas, and dried fruits, but they usually come as a need for yin after too much yang.

Typically, given my druthers, what I want to eat in the cold months are not fruits but vegetables—big, raw, leafy green salads with chunky, hearty vegetables and raw goat cheese, some baked beets or steamed spinach, and a little dark chocolate for dessert. We also eat out a lot in the winter, so I can enjoy my favorite vegetable-centric meals in restaurants.

For me, the cold winter months are made bearable with lots of good lovin’, food I actually desire, and plenty of fun (as well as my beloved infrared sauna). Quality time with family and good friends and festive nights out enjoying some great red wine are my sources of warmth. I don’t consider myself weak because I pepper my winter with such pleasures. Rather, I just respect my natural cycles and what works for me. Those things transform the cold and drab seasons into an inviting, enjoyable passage. Along with that, I look forward to the Cerignola and Castelvetrano olives that I get at my gourmet store and organic, long-stemmed carrots. These are all part of my daily feasting.

What I’m getting at is that all things are cyclical. Much as I love the vegetable-centric meals, goat cheese, chocolate, and wine in the cold months and find “fruit nights” a less satisfying choice, I find that, come the warmer temperatures, the opposite happens. Without any prompting, I desire fruit meals over vegetable meals. I choose date balls and dried figs for dessert over chocolate, and have only the rare desire for wine. In the warmer months, I crave fruits, fruit-based soups, frozen-banana-carob milkshakes topped with cinnamon and shredded coconut, and avocado salads—while things like goat cheese, chocolate, and wine feel dense and acidic* most days (I still want them from time to time, but usually with the addition of lots of cucumber and cherry tomatoes or salsa in the salads to make them more “fruity” and refreshing). Wine, cheese, and chocolate are still on the scene, but less so—they are more my go-to staples when I’m eating out or entertaining guests. In short, the meals that serve me best in fall and winter are different from those that serve me best in spring and summer. It’s an intuitive thing, not a strict “by the nutritional book” thing.

I have found it serves me well to trust, embrace, and respect the seasons of life in all aspects. I’ve learned after all these years to go with the flow. If I’m really honest with myself, I will be fully aware if I’m on a slippery slope of devitalized vegetables or too much wine or chocolate, or even overeating. If I am honest with myself, I will gravitate toward what will truly satisfy me, what I truly want, in both body and spirit. This also ensures change and variety, even if there is a lot of repetition during the course of each season. The repetition will eventually make way for a shift that will bring a different sort of repetition, but there is nothing wrong with some repetition if it springs from genuine desire and intuition.

Here’s another bit of food for thought: Any of the foods discussed in this diet-lifestyle are fine as long as we enjoy them correctly—that is, in the right combinations, with plenty of fresh, raw juices to keep the system alkaline, and while paying respectful attention to intestinal cleanliness to keeping yeast colonies at bay, as needed.

Acknowledging the wisdom of our relationship with the seasons and understanding the nuances of the “petri dish” of the human body are two excellent guideposts we can use to make sure we never veer too far off course and consistently progress.

So, without further ado, here’s what I’m eating now…

Now that the weather has warmed up, I find that all I want are juicy fruits and fruit soups or salsa-guacamole-style green salads. Here are two meals I’m just LOVING these days:


(Note: this meal is not for those who are battling yeast issues.)

2 to 3 Fuji apples (I know apples are out of season, but I have been chomping at the bit for them!)

The Spring Cell Cleanse (my amazing new fruit soup):

2 cups fresh pineapple, cubed

5 ounces fresh, organic baby spinach

1 cup organic alfalfa sprouts

2-3 dried, organic Turkish figs

½ medium Hass avocado (ready to eat but not overripe)

5 frozen strawberries, or a couple of ice cubes instead if needed (used to keep the mixture from warming while blending)

1-2 cups of water (to blend)

stevia to taste (use sparingly, as the soup is naturally pretty sweet, but I sometimes add a little stevia for extra sweetness)

Blend in a high-speed blender until smooth. Makes approximately 5 cups. Some nights I eat it all; other nights it’s too much. Use your intuition to gauge the right amount for you.


1-2 bananas

2-4 dried, organic Turkish figs

1 container of Salud-brand macaroons (about 7 macaroons per container)

These macaroons are stunning, made with only coconut, honey, and spring water. They are not a raw product, but they are lighter and a “quicker exit” macaroon than any I have found in the raw marketplace (the raw ones either have coconut oil, nuts, or both, making them very heavy). I get them at Health Nuts in my neighborhood in New York City. They are also carried by Health n’ Harmony in Manhattan (and probably several other store locations I’m unaware of). Salud is based in Brooklyn and their macaroons can be ordered by calling 347-295-1191.

Our brilliant Chef Doris has undertaken the challenge of outdoing Salud—so watch out, Salud! She aimed to create a rendition of macaroons that uses half the amount of honey that Salud uses, supplementing with NuNaturals stevia, to reduce the yeast-feeding component. She has come up with a brilliant rendition, and I’m encouraging her to package them for purchase, so stay tuned!


To start: a bunch of Cerignola and Castelvetrano olives and yummy, organic, long-stemmed carrots with green tops (No, I don’t eat the green tops, but these carrots taste the best, and the greens hanging off the ends make me feel like Bugs Bunny!)

The Cool Southwestern Salad:

Serves 2

8 ounces mixed greens with herbs (by Earthbound Farms; or make your own by adding cilantro, dill, and parsley to some tender baby greens) ½ cup of the best quality guacamole you can find (or make your own)

1 medium Hass avocado, diced

1 cup Green Mountain Gringo-brand mild salsa

2/3 cup fresh cucumber, diced

1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, halved

Juice of 2 lemons

NuNaturals stevia to taste

Enjoy the amount that feels right to you. You can mix the remainder into your next salad—just pop it on top of fresh greens and watch it come to life!

Dessert: Same as for DINNER #1, more or less.

I hope that wherever you are, in whatever season, you tune into what the season is telling you. Temper all that you have learned about what is best for your bio-terrain, your detox level, and your social and emotional stages, so you don’t ever push beyond your comfort zone. Most of all, enjoy the moment, because soon this season will be over, carrying us all into a new phase with new tastes, new pleasures, new ways of seeing things.

Now that The Rose Cleanse guidebook is completed (it’s up on <a href=”/community-register.php”>DetoxCommunity</a> now, and will be available for non-members tomorrow) and Emotional Eating S.O.S.!, Part III is completed (to be posted later this week on the community site, sorry for the delay), I hope to get back to posting regularly.

In the meantime, I hope to see some of you at the Advanced Detoxification Course starting Tuesday at Organic Avenue here in NYC, or for Detox Walks (every Thursday morning), also here in NYC. The information is on the <a href=”/events.php”>Events page</a>. This is a great way to get your questions answered. I’m actually amazed that more people haven’t been taking advantage of this opportunity. I’m not taking clients anymore, but here is a completely free opportunity to ask me anything you want! The weather has been spectacular for us, and this coming Thursday promises another stunning, sun-drenched morning!

*NOTE: If you are a beginner, these things are far less dense and acidic as part of a largely raw vegetable Detox 4 Women approach” than what you were consuming before, so they will be advantageous (as we affectionately call them, “safe poisons”). One person’s poison is another’s antidote!

Let the Sunshine In!

Well, well, well, it’s finally happened—the truth about the carcinogenic effects of sunscreen has finally reached the headlines. The facts about cellular destruction by way of sunscreen have not only been, at long last, officially documented and researched per the nation’s standards of credible news, but they are far more dire than most people ever guessed. You can read all about it below.

But I find it sad that it takes an “official” report to wake everyone up to such an obvious affront to our blood chemistry and cellular health. The general public had to wait for ten years after the initial scientific study for enough evidence to warn us of the damage sunscreens cause. People are always waiting for the authorities to tell them what to do or what not to do, failing to consider the obvious: When you put chemicals on your skin, they will penetrate and enter the bloodstream! The sun’s rays will cause mutations of these chemicals, making them even more harmful! An antioxidant does not have the same effect on cells when synthesized and internalized inorganically!

All it takes to see the truth is a little attention to what we know of organisms and synthetic chemicals. Otherwise, why spend twenty years in school? Why even bother with biology if we don’t apply the laws of life to our own bodies and the life around us? Intuition, reflection, and common sense are all well within our reach. We don’t need research studies to direct our next moves. Besides, the research always comes too late. Remember thalidomide?

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: The sun is the most powerful cleanser and regenerator of all life—yes, including human life—on our planet. It is our ally, not our enemy! Humans, however, are not clean enough for the sun, and our relationship with the sun is counterintuitive. We live indoors all year and consume rubbish, and then go on vacations, spending hours on end in the midday sun, which magnetizes the body’s acidity to the surface as we sweat out the toxins between beers and sodas. Skin cancer is the sun magnetizing poisons from deep in the body to the surface. This is the sun’s attempt to heal the body, or at least to reveal internal sickness that would otherwise remain hidden. In about ten years, the authorities will get around to publishing a report on this.

Do you want to frolic in the sun? Of course you do, but do it with respect for yourself and for the sun. Cleanse internally, so that the sun doesn’t magnetize all your impurities. And honor the power of the sun. Remember, hot-blooded animals do not sunbathe at the peak of the sun’s intensity.

The sun is our healer, our generator, our bliss, our light—indeed, the infuser of the most powerful electromagnetic current of life force energy into soil and cells! Our vilification of the sun is one of the most misguided perceptions of our time.

When people ask me what I use in the sun (because I love to bask in its healing rays whenever I can), I tell them I use either nothing at all or coconut oil. They look at me in horror. But I’ve become clean enough for the sun, and coconut oil does not mutate at high temperatures. It’s dreamy! Don’t try this yourself until you are sufficiently cleansed. You will know you are when the sun makes you feel and look better, not worse. In fact, I shun all products made with SPF. They just feel and smell so toxic to me.

When my kids’ camp counselors tell them it’s time to lather up with sunscreen, my kids are the only ones who say they don’t wear sunscreen. As a family, we travel all around the world chasing the sun when we can escape our day-to-day lives in the Big Apple. My kids respect the power of the sun, and the sun honors the cleanliness of their cells. No one gets burned. Everyone has a blast!

Bottom line: don’t use sunscreen unless you are actually forced to be in the midday sun for long periods, in which case there are plenty of smart alternatives, such as sun-protecting T-shirts and natural sunscreens like those by Purple Prairie and Hara Sport, where the active ingredient is zinc oxide. (When I was a kid growing up on the beaches of Southern California, it was cool to apply strips of zinc oxide on the nose, under the eyes, and on the shoulders). Otherwise, in the mild hours of the sun, just keep your skin clean with a natural oil like coconut, avocado or jojoba if desired, and be aware of your skin’s relationship with the sun. For the face, I just wear a straw hat or cap after some gentle exposure.

Slathering on traditional sunscreen is akin to suffocating your cells and poisoning your blood. Time to let your skin breathe in all the life force it’s been thirsting for! Have a wonderful summer!

AN ADDENDUM: A reader recently wrote in saying, “. . . this one has me puzzled. The sun as you commented is not our enemy but our healer. But for those days when we need protection, because the sun is different now, what can we use to slow down the penetration of the rays. What products do you use especially for your children?”

I’d like to address this because it raises a core issue that is so important to confront honestly. The hard fact of the matter is, there is no way to avoid being bitten in the tush by the damage we have done to the natural world. We dissolve the ozone layer and then want to find a nice, neat solution so we don’t get hurt ourselves. We want our products and our cars, and yet we don’t want to be harmed by the ultraviolet rays. We cannot have it both ways. At some point, we have to accept the consequences of our actions—both individually and collectively. The ozone is continuing to thin, and no health plan under the sun can completely protect toxic bodies under such rays.

We are one interconnected, interdependent organism. No class of person can buy his or her way out of this. No amount of science can rebuild the ozone layer. We have to start from the bottom up by creating a viable world, and only then, eventually, will the ozone be able to rebuild itself like tissue regenerates itself in the body if allowed to heal. No one can escape the repercussions of our actions as a society. We like to think we’re independent, but we are all connected, feeling the collective pain that our way of life inflicts on the world, and depending on each other for our survival.

Something else to think about: As the soil deteriorates further, more and more trees (the few that are still living anyway) will become as diseased as we are. If we maintain this course, eventually there will be no trees, which of course means no oxygen. This is the endgame. “Checkmate,” says the life-deteriorating team.

The deep shift in consciousness needs to happen now, and it needs to happen swiftly. As I say to my kids when they are being silly at an inappropriate time, “I’m not interested in the nonsense. Just use your common sense and get the job done. You’re smart. Figure it out.” I know, poor kids. I’m pretty tough, but they are extremely resourceful for it. The fact is, when we have to be, we can all be pretty resourceful!

I leave you with this quote by the wonderful Jungian scholar, Robert A. Johnson (from his book, Balancing Heaven and Earth). This is one of the best expressions of how to think interdependently that I’ve ever read: “Each understands that nothing that causes another pain is worth the having; nothing that diminishes another is of any value; nothing that is won at the expense of another is workable; no happiness that causes another loss is worthy.”

Kowabunga, Natalia

Study: Many Sunscreens May Be Accelerating Cancer, Andrew Schneider Senior Public Health Correspondent

WASHINGTON (May 24) – Almost half of the 500 most popular sunscreen products may actually increase the speed at which malignant cells develop and spread skin cancer because they contain vitamin A or its derivatives, according to an evaluation of those products released today.

AOL News also has learned through documents and interviews that the Food and Drug Administration has known of the potential danger for as long as a decade without alerting the public, which the FDA denies.

The study was released with Memorial Day weekend approaching. Store shelves throughout the country are already crammed with tubes, jars, bottles and spray cans of sunscreen.

The white goop, creams and ointments might prevent sunburn. But don’t count on them to keep the ultraviolet light from destroying your skin cells and causing tumors and lesions, according to researchers at Environmental Working Group.

In their annual report to consumers on sunscreen, they say that only 39 of the 500 products they examined were considered safe and effective to use.

The report cites these problems with bogus sun protection factor (SPF) numbers: <br /> • The use of the hormone-disrupting chemical oxybenzone, which penetrates the skin and enters the bloodstream.<br /> • Overstated claims about performance.<br /> • The lack of needed regulations and oversight by the Food and Drug Administration.

But the most alarming disclosure in this year’s report is the finding that vitamin A and its derivatives, retinol and retinyl palmitate, may speed up the cancer that sunscreen is used to prevent.

Environmental Working Group

A dangerous additive 

The industry includes vitamin A in its sunscreen formulations because it is an anti-oxidant that slows skin aging.

But the EWG researchers found the initial findings of an FDA study of vitamin A’s photocarcinogenic properties, meaning the possibility that it results in cancerous tumors when used on skin exposed to sunlight.

”In that yearlong study, tumors and lesions developed up to 21 percent faster in lab animals coated in a vitamin A-laced cream than animals treated with a vitamin-free cream,” the report said.

The conclusion came from EWG’s analysis of initial findings released last fall by the FDA and the National Toxicology Program, the federal government’s principle evaluator of substances that raise public health concerns.

EWG’s conclusions were subsequently scrutinized by outside toxicologists.

Based on the strength of the findings by FDA’s own scientists, many in the public health community say they can’t believe nor understand why the agency hasn’t already notified the public of the possible danger.

”There was enough evidence 10 years ago for FDA to caution consumers against the use of vitamin A in sunscreens,” Jane Houlihan, EWG’s senior vice president for research, told AOL News.

”FDA launched this one-year study, completed their research and now 10 years later, they say nothing about it, just silence.”

On Friday, the FDA said the allegations are not true.

”We have thoroughly checked and are not aware of any studies,” an FDA spokesperson told AOL News. She said she checked with bosses throughout the agency and found no one who knew of the vitamin A sunscreen research being done by or on behalf of the agency.

But documents from the FDA and the National Toxicology Program showed that the agency had done the research.

”Retinyl palmitate was selected by (FDA’s) Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition for photo-toxicity and photocarcinogenicity testing based on the increasingly widespread use of this compound in cosmetic retail products for use on sun-exposed skin,” said an October 2000 report by the National Toxicology Program.

FDA’s own website said the animal studies were done at its National Center for Toxicological Research in Jefferson, Ark. And it was scientists from the FDA center and National Toxicology Program who posted the study data last fall.

In a perfect world 

The ideal sunscreen would completely block the UV rays that cause sunburn, immune suppression and damaging free radicals. It would remain effective on the skin for several hours and not form harmful ingredients when degraded by UV light, the report said.

National Cancer Institute Graph of melanoma of the skin rates from 1975 to 2006. APC stands for annual percent change and AAPC stands for average annual percent change.

But in the U.S., there is currently no sunscreen that meets all of these criteria. European countries have more chemical combinations to offer, but in the U.S. the major choice is between the “chemical” sunscreens, which have inferior stability, penetrate the skin and may disrupt the body’s hormone systems, and “mineral” sunscreens zinc and titanium dioxide.

Increasingly, as AOL News reported in March, the industry is using titanium dioxide that is made nanosized, which a growing number of researchers believe have serious health implications.

The sunscreen industry cringes when EWG releases its yearly report – this is its fourth. The industry charges that the advocacy group wants to do away with all sunscreen products, a claim that is not accurate.

The report’s researchers clearly say that an effective sunscreen prevents more damage than it causes, but it wants consumers to have accurate information on the limitations of what they buy and on the potentially harmful chemicals in some of those products.

EWG does warn consumers not to depend on any sunscreen for primary protection from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays. Hats, clothing and shade are still the most reliable sun protection available, they say.

Don’t count on the numbers 

Some of us are old enough to remember when the idea of having a tan was good, a sign of health, when billboards and magazine ads featured the Coppertone girl showing off her tan when a puppy pulls down her bathing suit bottom.

Going for that tan, we coated our kids and ourselves with sun blockers with sun protection factors of 1 or 2. Some overly cautious parents might have smeared on a 4 during the hottest part of a day.

But we’ve learned of the dangers that come from exposure to the sun’s rays, especially ultraviolet A and B. So today, drugstore shelves are crammed with sunscreens boasting SPFs of 30, 45, 80 or even higher.

However, the new report says those numbers are often meaningless and dangerous because products with high SPF ratings sell a false sense of security, encouraging people using them to stay out in the sun longer.

”People don’t get the high SPF they pay for,” the report says. “People apply about a quarter of the recommended amount. So in everyday practice, a product labeled SPF 100 really performs like SPF 3.2, an SPF 30 rating equates to a 2.3 and an SPF 15 translates to 2.”

In 2007, the report says, the FDA published proposed regulations that would prohibit manufacturers from labeling sunscreens with an SPF higher than “SPF 50.” The agency wrote that higher values would be “inherently misleading,” given that “there is no assurance that the specific values themselves are in fact truthful.”

This is being widely ignored by the sunscreen makers who are heavily advertising their 80, 90 and 100 SPF products.

”Flouting FDA’s proposed regulation,” companies substantially increased their high-SPF offerings in 2010 with one in six brands now listing SPF values higher than 50. “Neutrogena and Banana Boat stand out among the offenders, with six and four products labeled as ‘SPF 100,’ respectively,” the new report says.

The full list of the best and worst sunscreens can be found on the EWG’s searchable database.

Life Is Just a Bowl of Cherries

These freakish, non-organic cherries are your cells on modern living. I’m not speaking just metaphorically, either. Make no mistake: there is no difference between the havoc that modern living wreaks on your cells and the cellular degeneration of these cherries. Only the limitations of the naked eye keep us from witnessing this cellular holocaust in real time.

On our current course, however, we will increasingly see this mutation of cells in our degenerated offspring. This bowlful of cherries is a very real manifestation, on the micro- and macrocosmic levels, of our cultural choices. Shall we all hold hands and sing “Kumbaya” with our eyes closed and pretend it’s not really happening?

My associate, Ana, was recently among the many women who never think they are thin enough, who are disappointed in their diets for not making them look emaciated, who are products of a certain Upper East Side social class who spend their days in plastic surgeons’ chairs when they are not purchasing thousand-dollar frocks and clinking vodka tonics at lunchtime on Madison Avenue. They would rather be skinny with cancer than clean-celled and glowing from head to toe like our lovely Ana is today.

Not thin enough, eh? The next time you think this, consider: Would it appease you if you were twenty pounds lighter on a diet of saccharine, cigarettes, and caffeine, with maybe a little “blow” now and then? Would it ease your conscience if the dresses you were buying were for philanthropic galas? Let’s not carry on this lineage of thinking that deteriorates our world from the top down. This mindset would be almost comical if it didn’t lead to birth defects, suicide, and oil spills.

Modern life is just this bowl of cherries, ain’t it? Well, in this bowl is where the blind, programmed marionettes of civilization and their children will wind up. This is the endgame. Are you benching it, or are you going to get in the game and fight for your cells, your future, and the fate of humankind?

Let’s hussle, team!