Why You Should Avoid “Fragrances”

Essential Oils Provide a Healthier Option

We can get very attached to the smell of our favorite lotion or body wash, but there’s often something lurking behind the scent that can harm your health. Many fragranced personal care products contain chemicals called “phthalates,” which help the scent cling to skin and hair. The term hardly ever actually appears on the labels, but instead may be one of the ingredients that make up “fragrance” or “parfum/perfume.”

According to the Environmental Working Group, studies have linked phthalates to testicular cell death as well as hormone changes, lower sperm count, less mobile sperm, birth defects in the male reproductive system, obesity, diabetes, and thyroid irregularities. It’s best to avoid them altogether! The EWG’s Skin Deep database can help you discover the safest alternatives.

Essential Oils: A Safer Option

Essential oils have soared in popularity and are commonly found in people’s medicine cabinets, but can they be used as a replacement for the scents you love? When diluted properly, they often can. Essential oils are highly aromatic substances found in certain plants and used for protection from predators and to attract pollinators. After the distillation of a plant, the aromatic substance is referred to as an essential oil.

Safety, Dilution, & Storage

It takes a lot of plant material to make a small amount of essential oil—they are highly concentrated. For example, it takes 50-60 roses to produce one drop of rose essential oil! This means you only need a very small amount to achieve a desired effect. Very few, if any, essential oils should be ingested or applied directly to the skin. I recommend diluting essential oils into a carrier oil or substance. You do this by combining the oils with “carriers” (such as vegetable, seed, or nut oils) before applying them to your skin.

Because essential oils evaporate easily, it’s best to store them in dark, airtight, glass bottles. Exposure to light, oxygen, and heat will break down the oils and they can become “oxidized” and irritating to the skin. Purchasing unadulterated, organic 100% essential oils from reputable manufacturers helps ensure you are using the purest plant constituents while ensuring ethical and sustainable harvesting methods.

Popular Oils & Their Therapeutic Benefits

Here are a few of my favorite oils to diffuse, combine with carrier oils, and use in my homemade cleaning solutions:

  • Lavender — The most widely used essential oil due to its broad range of properties; antidepressant, decongestant, sedative, promotes calming, relieves headaches and muscle aches, healing for burns. Very safe, non-toxic, non-irritant; can use with children.
  • Tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia) — Great for green cleaning products and first aid; antifungal, antiseptic, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, decongestant, expectorant, stimulating to the immune system, good for acne; can put directly on the skin.
  • Peppermint — Found in 1000 BC in Egyptian tombs, widely used; anti-inflammatory, antifungal, circulation stimulant, pain relief, nausea, headaches, digestive upset (can have the opposite effect with GERD). Strong; dilute well! Avoid in children younger than 5.
  • Frankincense — Extracted from the resin / gum of the Boswellia tree, grown in the Middle East and Africa; antiseptic, wound healing, expectorant, pain-relieving, nervous system relaxant. May cause irritation in those with sensitive skin. Use in low dilution.
  • Eucalyptus — Uplifting aroma useful for respiratory conditions, decongestant inhalant for colds, antiviral, antibacterial; because it inhibits proliferation of the virus causing the cold, it’s useful as an air spray in the house for protection when other are sick. Non-toxic and non-irritating when used properly, but not be used on or around children younger than 10.

To your good health,

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Karen’s Corner 

Let me help you clean up your own personal environment in just 14 days!

Supporting the important mission of the Environmental Working Group means so much to me and my team. That’s why I’m thrilled that 100% of the profits generated from our Toxin Takedown 14 Day Transformation will benefit the EWG! This self-guided challenge is full of easy ways for you to detox your environment and your health. In just 14 days, you can lighten your toxic body burden. Your body will thank you! Sign up here.

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Toxin Takedown 14 Day Transformation!

For this cleanse, KMHC is proud to support the Environmental Working Group. EWG’s mission is to empower people to live healthier lives in a healthier environment. With breakthrough research and education, EWG drives consumer choice and civic action.

All profits generated from the purchase of Toxin Takedown will be donated to EWG


You can now put small steps into action to detox your body and home from environmental chemicals. Each day suggests one thing you can do to reduce your toxic load.

CLICK HERE to sign up for this virtual, self-guided cleanse, which includes the following resources that you can access from one convenient online hub:

EBOOK + WORKSHEETS —The ebook features helpful “Avoid” and “Action” lists and the 7 worksheets are chock full of quizzes, checklists, and cheat sheets to help you detox your body, mind, and environment.

DAILY EMAILS — Think of this as your virtual cheerleader—and taskmaster! You’ll not only receive valuable prep emails outlining what to expect, but you’ll get a daily email for 14 days with action items that correspond with your ebook.

CLEANSE MENU + RECIPES — No need to think about what to eat—we’ve laid out 2 weeks of meals with recipes included in this 42-page cleanse menu. Simplify your life and upgrade your pantry with with this useful guide.

GROUP SUPPORT — There’s strength in numbers! Over at our private Facebook group (only for paid participants), you’ll get support from others in the community. Karen will also connect with you here via Q&As and live videos.

If you’ve been craving detox of your body, mind, and environment, know you could be feeling significantly better in just 2 weeks’ time.

More energy, glowing skin, and a leaner body are just some of the many benefits you’ll reap by reducing your exposure to man-made chemicals that lurk in your personal care products, cleaning supplies, food, and even the air you breathe! What are you waiting for?

To your good health,

p.s. You can feel good about your $49 investment in Toxin Takedown, as we are donating ALL PROFITS  to The Environmental Working Group, an organization that fights for a cleaner, healthier world.

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Boost Your Metabolism with Intermittent Fasting

By Karen Malkin, Karen Malkin Health Counseling 

Train Your Body to Burn Fat for Fuel- The best of all medicines is resting and fasting.” —Benjamin Franklin 

Have you heard of intermittent fasting (IF) and wondered what it’s all about? Well IF simply involves alternating cycles of fasting and eating. Many studies show this can cause weight loss, improve metabolic health, protect against disease, and perhaps help you live longer.

Specific benefits of intermittent fasting include:

• Lower glucose and/or insulin levels

• Improved lipid profile and blood pressure

• Greater fat mobilization

• Slower cell proliferation rates

• Enhanced mitochondrial remodeling

• Lower inflammation and oxidative stress

• Slower aging and longer lifespan

• Increased HGH and athletic performance

Hardwired to Fast?

The whole idea of intermittent fasting is as old as eating itself. Back in the hunter-gatherer days we didn’t have the luxury of eating a meal every three hours. You only ate after you caught or foraged your food—and there could be long periods of fasting between those meals. Today, we still do some form of IF. When you go to sleep you literally fast for eight hours, wake up, and then eat“break-fast” in the morning.

Here are some of the popular methods of IF:

  • Alternate Day Fasting: Alternating fasting days with eating days.
  • Modified Fasting Regimens: Consumption of 20-25% of energy needs on scheduled fasting days (such as the 5:2 diet, in which you eat normally for 5 days of the week and restrict calories for 2 days of the week).
  • Time-Restricted Feeding: Consume food within specific windows, which induces fasting periods on a routine basis (such as the “16/8” method, in which you fast for 16 hours each day, eating only between a noon to 8 p.m. window).

I prefer a modified version of the 16/8 method, which is less restrictive, but delivers similar results:

  • Eat three meals a day.
  • Take time to enjoy a satisfying breakfast.
  • Make lunch your main meal of the day; eating enough to get to dinner without snacking.
  • Finish with a light dinner by 8 p.m. or earleir. No food after that. Eating late at night leads to weight gain.
  • Wake up and break your 10–12 hour fast
  • Drink lots of of water in-between meals

Skipping breakfast may not effect body weight, but it does increase 24-hour blood glucose levels in the short term. More studies are still needed to determine if breakfast skipping is beneficial, neutral or detrimental for your health in the long-term. Some say it’s wise to “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper.”

How it Works

Burning fat actually refers to the process of using fat as fuel, or your main source of energy. But fat is only one kind of fuel that can be utilized by your body; the other is carbohydrates (or sugars). When your body has both available, it burns the sugars first and the fat second.

A widely popularized theory to stabilize blood sugar is to eat 5–6 small meals throughout the day. However, when your body is being fed every 2–3 hours, it has no incentive to burn its stored fat for energy. When you eat three meals a day with ample time between meals, your body is forced to burn stored fat.

Once fat is restored as an active fuel supply, you’ll enjoy the benefits of increased energy, more stable moods, greater mental clarity, better sleep, fewer cravings, and natural—permanent weight management. By doing these “mini fasts” between meals, you are training your body to use your fat reserves as fuel, which is one important way to Master Your Metabolism.

To your good health,

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MCT Makes It Easy for Bodybuiders to Stay on Ketogenic Diet

If you’re a body builder, you may have followed a ketogenic diet in order to lean out and look ripped right before an upcoming show.

When you eat a diet with few carbs, lots of fat, and adequate protein, your body responds to the lower levels of blood sugar by switching to an alternative power source. It converts fatty acids to ketones, which become your main energy source.

Translation: Instead of burning carbs, your body burns FAT.

Feel the burn. Not the pain. 

According to recent studies, a ketogenic diet is an optimal method for shedding body fat and exposing toned muscles. Here are some specific benefits of a ketogenic diet:

  • If adequate amounts of protein are consumed while in a state of ketosis, your body will spare protein and preserve muscle.
  • Many beneficial hormones (GH, testosterone, and IGF-I) are released, which leads to more fat breakdown and lean muscle growth.
  • You may experience decreased appetite and fewer carb cravings, making dieting easier to accomplish.

Here’s the problem: Preparing meals and adhering to the strict guidelines of a ketogenic diet can be extremely difficult for many as it involves a very rigid ratios of carbs, proteins, and fat.

Fortunately, simply combining MCT Lean MCT Oil with a reduced carbohydrate diet can generate therapeutic blood ketone levels and deliver all the benefits of following a ketogenic diet—without the struggle.


Want to build lean muscle and a strong body via a ketogenic diet?

Get started today with MCT Oil or Vegan Protein Blend (or both—they’re the perfect pair)!

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