Monday, February 1, 2010

"Get Me Out": New Book Examines the History of Birthing

Today on NPR's "Fresh Air", host Terri Gross explores the history of childbirth with author Randi Hutter Epstein. She wrote a history of childbirth called "Get Me Out: A History of Childbirth From the Garden of Eden to the Sperm Bank."

Sounds interesting. Here are a few snippets from the Fresh Air interview:

How about "Do it yourself" forceps? This is one of the many "innovations" Epstein covers.

Students would watch a doctor...sticking his hands under sheets and [see] a baby pulled out.

And that's all they saw! Very hands-on. Sounds enlightened, doesn't it?

On childbirth and pain, and the differing views of it over time:
'Is pain a good thing or a bad thing? Things that were done to alleviate the pain were considered heresy'...
to, 'We deserve not to remember anything about childbirth,'
but later feminists were saying, 'We deserve to experience pregnancy. The real issue is doctor/patient relationships.'
Epstein says that our feelings about our care providers may have helped propel the movement in the 1970s away from drugs during childbirth.

Ack! Although I love hearing about childbirth in general and natural birth in particular, I think certain parts of this book may make me cross my legs. Doesn't sway me though, I am still eager to read it.
No matter how your baby came into the world, this sounds like a fascinating read.

Check out the interview here. The book is available on Amazon, but not in paperback yet.

Photo: via NPR, taken by Nina Berman.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Yet another reason we should value seeds more than gold...

Click here to find out more!

Monsanto's GMO Corn Linked To Organ Failure, Study Reveals

Huffington Post | Katherine Goldstein/Gazelle Emami Posted: 01-12-10 05:30 PM

Germany Gm Corn

In a study released by the International Journal of Biological Sciences, analyzing the effects of genetically modified foods on mammalian health, researchers found that agricultural giant Monsanto's GM corn is linked to organ damage in rats.

According to the study, which was summarized by Adam Shake at Twilight Earth, "Three varieties of Monsanto's GM corn - Mon 863, insecticide-producing Mon 810, and Roundup® herbicide-absorbing NK 603 - were approved for consumption by US, European and several other national food safety authorities."

Monsanto gathered its own crude statistical data after conducting a 90-day study, even though chronic problems can rarely be found after 90 days, and concluded that the corn was safe for consumption. The stamp of approval may have been premature, however.

In the conclusion of the IJBS study, researchers wrote:

"Effects were mostly concentrated in kidney and liver function, the two major diet detoxification organs, but in detail differed with each GM type. In addition, some effects on heart, adrenal, spleen and blood cells were also frequently noted. As there normally exists sex differences in liver and kidney metabolism, the highly statistically significant disturbances in the function of these organs, seen between male and female rats, cannot be dismissed as biologically insignificant as has been proposed by others. We therefore conclude that our data strongly suggests that these GM maize varieties induce a state of hepatorenal toxicity....These substances have never before been an integral part of the human or animal diet and therefore their health consequences for those who consume them, especially over long time periods are currently unknown."

Monsanto has immediately responded to the study, stating that the research is "based on faulty analytical methods and reasoning and do not call into question the safety findings for these products."

The IJBS study's author Gilles-Eric Séralini responded to the Monsanto statement on the blog, Food Freedom, "Our study contradicts Monsanto conclusions because Monsanto systematically neglects significant health effects in mammals that are different in males and females eating GMOs, or not proportional to the dose. This is a very serious mistake, dramatic for public health. This is the major conclusion revealed by our work, the only careful reanalysis of Monsanto crude statistical data."

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Happy Holidays from OTTB!

We've got some new items in store, just in time for the holiday shopping season. We are now carrying Earth's Best baby wipes and diapers. These chlorine-free products are unscented and hypoallergenic for the most sensitive baby's skin. No chlorine means no dioxin released into the environment, which is good for us and good for the earth. The diapers come in infant thru 37 lbs. and the wipes are in packs of 80.

We are lucky to have a new vendor in from Monterey, VA! Hand Felted by Lisa :) She hand makes felted booties, mittens and hats in newborn and infant sizes. They are felted on the outside with a cotton (non-itchy!) cotton lining. Come in and check out her creations!

Another vendor, Diane Goodbar, knits up a storm here at On The Turtle's Back and we are holding a holiday give away on her cool knit hats. Receive one hat free when you spend $50 or more this season. They come in many cute color combinations, so come get one while they last.

If you are looking for a stroller this year for your family or for a friend, we have a high quality Peg Perego stroller in navy blue and plaid. This stroller retails for $400 and we have one here for $200! Fits children from infancy until toddlerhood. Made in Italy.

Check out our blog for more in the coming weeks featuring our local vendors and more product highlights. Have a happy and healthy autumn!


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Maclaren recalls 1 million strollers

Stroller maker says its umbrella strollers have resulted in the amputation of 12 children's fingertips.


NEW YORK ( -- Stroller maker Maclaren announced a recall on Monday that affects about 1 million umbrella strollers that can reportedly amputate or lacerate children's fingertips.

So far, the company said there have been 12 amputations across the country. This happens when children get their fingers stuck in between the stroller's side hinges while it is being opened or closed.

The South Norwalk, Conn.-based company announced the voluntary recall in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and advises customers to stop using the products manufactured in China sold since 1999 at stores including Babies R Us and Target.

Consumers can contact Maclaren at 877-688-2326 or visit to receive a free repair kit.

Maclaren said the kit includes hinge covers designed to fit all Maclaren strollers.

The recall affects the following models, which range in price from $100 to $400: Volo, Triumph, Quest Sport, Quest Mod, Techno XT, TechnoXLR, Twin Triumph, Twin Techno, and Easy Traveller. To top of page

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Comparison Chart between the common cold and swine flu

Know The Difference Between Cold And Swine Flu Symptoms
Swine Flu
Fever is rare with a cold. Fever is usually present with the flu in up to 80% of all flu cases. A temperature of 100°F or higher for 3 to 4 days is associated with the flu.
A hacking, productive (mucus- producing) cough is often present with a cold. A non-productive (non-mucus producing) cough is usually present with the flu (sometimes referred to as dry cough).
Slight body aches and pains can be part of a cold. Severe aches and pains are common with the flu.
Stuffy Nose
Stuffy nose is commonly present with a cold and typically resolves spontaneously within a week. Stuffy nose is not commonly present with the flu.
Chills are uncommon with a cold. 60% of people who have the flu experience chills.
Tiredness is fairly mild with a cold. Tiredness is moderate to severe with the flu.
Sneezing is commonly present with a cold. Sneezing is not common with the flu.
Sudden Symptoms
Cold symptoms tend to develop over a few days. The flu has a rapid onset within 3-6 hours. The flu hits hard and includes sudden symptoms like high fever, aches and pains.
A headache is fairly uncommon with a cold. A headache is very common with the flu, present in 80% of flu cases.
Sore Throat
Sore throat is commonly present with a cold. Sore throat is not commonly present with the flu.
Chest Discomfort
Chest discomfort is mild to moderate with a cold. Chest discomfort is often severe with the flu.

Preventing H1N1

Here is the Precautions to help fight against H1N1.

The only portals of entry are the nostrils and mouth/throat. In a global epidemic of this nature, it's almost impossible not coming into contact with H1N1 in spite of all precautions. Contact with H1N1 is not so much of a problem as proliferation is.

While you are still healthy and not showing any symptoms of H1N1 infection, in order to prevent proliferation, aggravation of symptoms and development of secondary infections, some very simple steps, not fully highlighted in most official communications, can be practiced (instead of focusing on how to stock N95 or Tamiflu):

Frequent hand-washing (well highlighted in all official communications).

2. "
Hands-off-the-face" approach. Resist all temptations to touch any part of face (unless you want to eat, bathe or slap).

3. *
Gargle twice a day with warm salt water (use Listerine if you don't trust salt). *H1N1 takes 2-3 days after initial infection in the throat/nasal cavity to proliferate and show characteristic symptoms. Simple gargling prevents proliferation. In a way, gargling with salt water has the same effect on a healthy individual that Tamiflu has on an infected one. Don't underestimate this simple, inexpensive and powerful preventative method.

4. Similar to 3 above, *
clean your nostrils at least once every day with warm salt water. *Not everybody may be good at using a Neti pot, but *blowing the nose hard once a day and swabbing both nostrils with cotton swabs dipped in warm salt water is very effective in bringing down viral population.*

5. *
Boost your natural immunity with foods that are rich in Vitamin C. *If you have to supplement with Vitamin C tablets, make sure that it also has Zinc to boost absorption.

6. *
Drink as much of warm liquids (tea, coffee, etc) as you can. *Drinking warm liquids has the same effect as gargling, but in the reverse direction. They wash off proliferating viruses from the throat into the stomach where they cannot survive, proliferate or do any harm.

I suggest you pass this on to your entire e-list; you never know who might pay attention to it - and STAY ALIVE because of it -