February Newsletter

February Newsletter

Welcome to the February newsletter where we launch the latest NIOD product (start getting very excited), a new product from Ameliorate, which I really, really love and we celebrate the second birthday of a life-changing product. We also take a look at an Italian brand which was created in 1821, I have news on Phylia and then we do health in the shape of some rather common health concerns. Before any of this I am going to begin with a touch of sadness:

Many of you are avid users of the fabulous products from Aromatherapy Associates. The brand was co-created by Geraldine Howard in 1985 and their first product launch, Deep Relax Bath & Shower Oil, remains their bestselling product, which is a testimony to the brilliance of the blends she formulated and their therapeutic benefits.

In 2012 Geraldine was diagnosed with a rare form of eye cancer; midway through her treatment she created ‘Inner Strength’, blended to help boost her spirits and to give her strength. She called it a ‘hug in a bottle’ and as it helped her, it also went on to help millions of people who were feeling low, whatever the reason.

Sadly, Geraldine died on 7 January; when somebody is such a force of nature, a legacy is left and Geraldine certainly left her mark on the industry. And that is how she will be remembered, for her remarkable achievements in an industry where very few gain such love and respect.

Some of you may wish to read (or re-read) my interview with Geraldine where she talked about Inner Strength; additionally we have some 7.5 ml bottles of Inner Strength to share. We will drop one of these randomly into some of the orders placed today (2 February).

It doesn’t matter what you buy or how much you spend, I am doing this in the hope that some of these find their way to the people who will really benefit from Inner Strength.
Gill meets Geraldine Howard

NIOD: Flavanone Mud

If you read the January newsletter, and/or if you are a VH Addict (hello all of you!), you will have been waiting for the next new product launch from NIOD, so here it is, in all its fabulous glory. And let me tell you before I begin, it is unlike anything you will have used before, it can be incorporated into your current NIOD regimen, or if you don’t use any of the NIOD products (does that apply to anybody I wonder!) it can be used as a stand-alone once or twice a week, but more on that later.

So, when is a masque not a masque (or mask), the answer is when it’s Flavanone Mud (FM). FM is a three-phase rinse-off dermal decongestion system that does not disrupt the skin surface, equilibrium or density. For categorical convenience, we will classify it as a masque, but its approach varies substantially from that offered by the concept of masques today, which of course you would expect from a new NIOD product.

Masques in general offer decongestion of the skin by means of including muds and clays to absorb surface impurities. While some level of deeper cleaning does occur with this approach, muds or clays are unable to solubilize surface impurities and so the decongestion is inefficient. Furthermore, the visible effect is very temporary and further exposure to pollution and cosmetics will undo most of the positive effect and that is a fact. Enter FM.

As with every NIOD launch, I am going to run through some of the science and I’m doing this in order to differentiate what has gone before; it also helps explain the functionality of the product, although quite honestly I would absolutely just love to tell you right now that you won’t want to live without it and leave it at that! I am obsessed (and I mean totally obsessed) with FM, so much so that it woke me up in the middle of night (promise I will tell you why soon). Let’s do it then:

Purifying Phase: This is the simplest phase in the formulation and it is also the phase that is most closely aligned with masques as we know them today. Within seconds of application a highly efficient bio-solubilizing technology breaks down water and oil soluble impurities and this is coupled with a delivery system for molecular oxygen gas, which increases oxygen supply in the upper layers of the skin. As a rather fabulous side-effect, it also knocks out opposing reactive oxygen species that contribute to longer-term ageing, so that’s a result in itself!

Add three clays: a black Amazonian clay with very high concentrations of titanium and oligo-elements binds to solubilized external impurities while reducing pre inconsistency immediately; a sedimentary white clay binds to excess sebum without impairing surface barrier integrity and a copper-rich, yet stable clay from Brazil that reinforces surface barrier function during the cleaning process.

Protective Phase: This phase offers the most innovative one of FM’s approach to decongestion by introducing technologies that offer a shield against external build-up. I am not going to write about all of them here otherwise this will go on forever and a day, but they include the inclusion of a sea polysaccharide to build a shield against external aggression, a bio-technological derivative of bitter orange peel to protect against pro-inflammatory factors (inflammation leads to premature ageing – not for us though!) and an ultra-pure bisabolol, which also fights inflammation.

And then, just when you thought the phase was complete, the magic continues with an advanced analogue of resveratrol, which enables a first-ever topical utility of this incredible molecule, which is a potent inhibitor of dopa oxidase to protect against environmental browning.

Responsive Phase: This phase of the formulation introduces signalling mechanisms to support inherent dermal immunity against environmental congestion factors. This phase is the most important phase of FM with respect to supporting skin health and longevity. The presence of ‘Flavanone’ in the name of the product emphasizes the importance of this phase and a highly-purified flavanone derived from the inner white parts of citrus peel triggers a sustained circulatory, non-inflammatory response to support dermal detoxification.

That’s the science bit done; we drill down more specifically on our site, so it’s there if you want it, but I just want to talk here about dermal integrity, but it won’t be me doing the talking, Brandon can have a moment (except it’s never a moment with Brandon; we unofficially hold the record for the longest phone calls ever). I’ll do the wrap after he has finished – actually I could probably go shopping while he is talking, nobody would ever know! Right Brandon, the platform is yours:

‘Masques and rinse-off treatments often highlight a promise toward glowing skin without respect for the simple fact that for skin to be truly glowing, so much needs to be in order including purification, texture regularity, pigmentation regularity, microcirculation, pore prominence and sebum function. Since masques in general at best address the issue of surface purification, their promise of glowing skin often would fall short and, in order to avoid user disappointment, these formulations often include more aggressive clays, acids and exfoliation mechanisms mainly to introduce enough irritation to increase circulation for a temporarily ‘glowing’ tone. This approach disrupts skin pH immediately, reduces skin density (thickness) and always causes inflammation which may lead to undue longer-term ageing.

FM avoids the use of aggressive clays, direct acids, low or high pH exfoliating agents or any material that would disrupt dermal balance or cause undue inflammation. This approach means FM has to work much harder to achieve the perceived ‘glow’ that excess inflammation would offer temporarily and that is what FM is designed to do; work much harder and from many different perspectives to build sustainable purity and the radiance that follows.

One of the most advanced technologies used in FM is actually one that sounds the most boring: a very refined dispersion mechanism that allows for a very thin layer of the formula to cover the skin surface very evenly. Most masques require a thick layer to be applied to cover the entire face, mainly due to the fact that clays and muds do not disperse well.

This drawback generally wastes a large amount of product that will sit in a thick layer on the skin’s surface, while only the very thin layer of the masque is actually in contact with the skin. In addition to product waste, many technologies used within masques become trapped within the thicker fast-drying layers of the formulations, rendering their utility high inefficient for the skin.

FM’s dispersion advancement reduces the amount of product needed to cover the skin’s surface by as much as 80% compared to traditional approaches, which means that each 50 ml container will offer between 18 and 25 treatments. The dispersion technology also allows for very rapid surface drying which translates to very quick absorption of the non-surface technologies used within the formulation’.

My turn! FM landed on my desk late on a Friday afternoon; I drove home so fast with it sitting beside me, it’s a complete miracle that I didn’t get a speeding ticket. FM needs to be applied to clean, dry skin, so off with my make-up using LVCE, and on it went. You only need a really thin layer and it is so easy to use. I think we need to forget about the word ‘mud’ in its former incarnations; over the years mud has fallen off my face into the sink and landed halfway up the bathroom wall in one instance, but we are talking ‘next generation’ here; actually FM may well have leapt a few generations because I have never, ever used anything like this before and the results are sensational.

The first thing you need to know is that it is terracotta in colour; the second thing is that it may well sting when you apply it and sting even more when you take it off, this is completely normal, so please don’t get frightened. It should be left on for approximately ten minutes and you can use it once or twice a week. Those are the instructions, but of course I have to take everything to the limit:

Brandon had been using it for a few days before I got mine and I didn’t hear the end of it; email after email after email arrived (‘it’s on my skin and not yours; my skin is always going to be better than yours; I’ve kept it on for hours and the last straw, I’ve slept with it on’). So I put it on that Friday afternoon and it stayed on for a few hours; when I rinsed it off I did a double-take; just when you think that your skin seriously couldn’t get any better, it just does.

Without sounding too dramatic, it looked like several layers of skin had been removed, every single bit of puff (inflammation) had gone and I nearly fell over with shock. I went to bed. Three hours later I woke up thinking about FM. I don’t think I have ever woken up dreaming about a product, there is a first for everything, so onto my face it went again and the obsession had begun.

Talk about being fixated, I started to use FM every night because I was hooked on the results; unlike other masques, the benefits are more evident 24-48 hours after application and continue to be maintained with continued use. For an accelerated method of use, use FM once per day for the first five days followed by weekly maintenance applications. You absolutely don’t have to do this, but I think it will make you smile rather a lot when you see the results.

Finally, just to be neat and if you are already using other NIOD products, this comes after LVCE, but before CAIS; if you have a different skincare regimen, use as a stand-alone on clean dry skin; so there we are, another NIOD launch and I invite you to join me and become a Terracotta Warrior. Forward we march – we are the VH Terracotta Army – to a planet called NIOD and there we find Brandon, hiding the next ten new products from the world, but wait, his face is blue. It’s going to be an exciting year!
Flavanone Mud £28 for 50 ml 

Ameliorate Skin Softening Bathing Powder

Many of you will remember us launching Ameliorate Skin Smoothing Body Lotion, which was formulated to help the alleviation of dry, rough bumpy skin, known as Keratosis Pilaris (KP) but often referred to as chicken skin. Since that time Ameliorate has become an award-winning brand, helping so many people along the way, so now a new product.

Skin Softening Bathing Powder is a conditioning bath soak specifically formulated to help provide immediate comfort for dry and dehydrated skin. Combining a soothing blend of Colloidal Oats and Sweet Almond Milk with active skin conditioners, this milky bath powder will help enhance moisture levels whilst gently cleansing the skin.

I really, really love this product; basically because of my boring allergy to essential oils, I can actually use this, so even if you don’t have KP, this is great for super-sensitive skin and I have no difficulty whatsoever in soaking in this for 15-20 minutes, which is the recommended usage time for allowing the body to absorb the skin softening complex. So in my bathroom, in my bath and on my skin, I think you will love it too. If you do have KP, apply Skin Smoothing Body Lotion after your bath – on dry skin please and thank you!
VH Editorial: Treatment of Keratosis PilarisSkin Softening Bathing Powder £23.50 for 350 grams; Skin Smoothing Body Lotion £27.50 for 200 ml

Phylia de M

You may have wondered why I haven’t been writing about Phylia for the past two or three months; maybe I just felt it was conspicuous by its absence because I am so used to including it wherever and whenever I can, purely based on the fact that the range is brilliant and because it has helped so many of you overcome hair loss issues and continues to do so.

If you have tried to order Phylia recently, you will know that we had totally run out of stock; Condition was the first to go on back order, followed by Connect, Re-Connect and then Clean. It was not a cute situation to be in, but our hands were tied as there were several issues with the production run. Nothing terrible, just delay after delay, mostly to do with ingredient famines.

I knew it was coming, Kazu and I remain as close today as we were when we first launched Phylia nearly four years ago (OMG four years!). So we took a combined deep breath, held hands and prayed that nobody would get too upset because with all the best will in the world there was nothing we could do. Several of you did panic though thinking it was the end of Phylia and one wrote that she didn’t know what she would do if it was gone as it had quite literally transformed her hair.

Thankfully, we are back in stock at the time of writing with the exception of Re-Connect, but that is on its way, so please bear with us. Meanwhile please accept our apologies for the delay; as a token of our appreciation for your ongoing loyalty and support, with every order placed for Clean we will pop in a travel size Condition (worth £7.50) and with every order placed for Condition we will pop in a travel size Clean (also worth £7.50) whilst stocks last. This comes with love and hugs from me and Kazu and we hope it makes you smile. ** Sorry, this promotion has now ended. **
Phylia de M from £28

Farmaceutici Dottor Ciccarelli

Milan. Italy. Pharmacists since 1821, the Ciccarelli family is renowned for creating high quality products, many of which are bestsellers in Italy. Because I love all things Italian, I have known about these products for several years and when I came across them again I decided the time had come to tell you about them.

They are most famous for their range of toothpastes, so that’s where we will begin; The first Pasta Del Capitano toothpaste launched in Italy in 1905 and it immediately became famous for its unique flavour of leaves of carnation, spearmint and cinnamon. The recipe remains the same today, but there are additions to the range including Whitening and Natural Herbs. Whitening includes a molecule which releases active oxygen with strong whitening and antibacterial action and Natural Herbs contains natural herbal extracts including Asiatic Pennywort, Echinacea, Whitehorn and Icelandic Lichen.
Pasta Del Capitano Toothpastes £7.50 each

Cera di Cupra – The Secret: This may seem an odd thing for me to be writing about, most especially because you all know my personal thoughts on skincare; it’s not like I hide my feelings! However, we are all different and there are many of you who are happy just using one product on your skin and so this is for you.

Also part of the Ciccarelli range of products, The Secret is for all skin types and is described as a moisturizing and brightening face cream to deeply nourish your skin and includes natural actives. It has a Mediterranean scent and it is pretty famous in Italy. If you walk into some of the oldest pharmacies, you will find it there and now you can find it here!
The Secret £29 for 15 ml

Tinnitus Remedies

Tinnitus is a Latin word, meaning ‘ringing’ and it is the perception of sound within the human ear in the absence of corresponding external sound. The symptoms of tinnitus are buzzing, ringing, whistles in the ear, clicking in the ear, chirping or other descriptors. Tinnitus may be hard to detect because the symptoms can come and go and can affect one or both ears. The most common noise heard is a shrill, high pitched unpleasant tone. Surprisingly, most of us at some point in time will experience this unpleasant tone, but for the majority it is only temporary.

Tinnitus is not a disease, but a symptom resulting from a range of possible underlying causes which include ear infections, wax in the ear, fluid retention in the middle and inner ear canal, Meniere’s disease, which is a disease of unknown cause that affects the membrane in the ear and Otosclerosis (a hereditary disorder due to overgrowth of bone in the inner ear). High blood pressure may also trigger the symptoms in some.

Tinnitus may disappear completely if an underlying symptom has been successfully treated, but in cases of chronic tinnitus, where there is no underlying causal factor, a variety of remedies are often recommended, which may help to provide relief from the symptoms.

Plantago Tincture has been found to be useful for tinnitus. Plantago lanceolata (English plantain) is a common weed which is composed of numerous compounds including mucilage, tannins, zinc and silicic acid. Plantago has been found to have anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, astringent and demulcent properties, which explains its frequent use in helping to alleviate catarrh, sinusitis and many concerns affecting the nose and throat.

Plantago has also been found to help middle and inner ear infections as well as glue ear. It is the combination of its ability to break down mucus, together with its tissue repairing and healing properties, due to its content of zinc and silica, which has been found to help those suffering from tinnitus, whether temporary or chronic.

We highly recommend trying Plantago Tincture as the first step in trying to alleviate the symptoms of Tinnitus, but you can read more on this subject, and discover further remedies, in Shabir’s article on this very common health concern.
VH Editorial: Tinnitus RemediesPlantago Tincture £9.75 for 50 ml

Sheald Recovery Balm by iS Clinical

Blow the trumpets, sound the horns, jump up and down because it is the second birthday of Sheald, the incredible product created by my LA boyfriends, which has gone on to help hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of people all over the world. As with so many of the iS Clinical products, it had been in and out of the lab for nearly three years, but it was worth the wait because the feedback has been beyond phenomenal and that includes some incredible praise from many surgeons.

I love launching new products and brands (there’s a surprise!), but I knew this was going to be an extraordinary launch, and it was. It was the first-ever product created for wound healing that could be used on open wounds and that was a big deal. The healing process was accelerated, it helped to prevent scabbing, scarring diminished and in many cases disappeared completely and then we discovered that with patience, it worked on old scarring too, which was the icing on the cake.

When India Knight wrote about it in The Sunday Times, I thought our website was going to crash; she was writing from a personal perspective because she had been using Sheald on her daughter who had undergone heart surgery. Two years on, the article remains as relevant today as it was then. It’s here if you want to read it and of course Sheald is in the VH Hall of Fame for its sheer brilliance.
Sheald Recovery Balm by iS Clinical £43 for 60 ml

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

Seasonal Affective Disorder, also referred to as SAD, is a condition that affects over half a million people in the UK and impacts upon the mental wellbeing of people during the winter months, often peaking in February.

Sufferers of SAD often experience low mood, varied degrees of depression, loss of energy, sleep problems, irritability, increased appetite, strong cravings for carbohydrates and sweet foods, as well as headaches and muscle pain. The defining characteristics of SAD are that the symptoms return annually and disappear during the three other seasons of the year.

SAD can affect any age and gender, although it is more common in females (of course!) and whilst the causal factor is not fully understood, it is clear that it is related to the amount of sunlight received. The body’s circadian rhythms are regulated by the amount of daylight and the lack of daylight during the winter months, which appears to have an effect on the hypothalamus. The hypothalamus plays a key role in numerous complex functions within our bodies, including hormone cycles, sleep and wake-up cycle times, as well as our emotional state.

All hormonal glands communicate with each other using hormones as chemical messengers. An imbalance in any hormone can therefore have a wide impact on the body. In the case of SAD, the hypothalamus, the adrenals and the brain are all interlinked through a complex series of chemical reactions, with the result of increased melatonin during the day leading to the feelings of lethargy, a lack of motivation and a reduction in the production of serotonin, which is the mood elevating chemical in the brain.

If you have a milder form of SAD, you may benefit greatly from the use of Magnolia Rhodiola Complex, which is our bestselling supplement for stress and anxiety issues. It contains a potent extract of magnolia, which works to physically relax muscles; magnolia extracts have been shown to help reduce levels of the stress hormone, cortisol. It is the increase in levels of cortisol in the body that prevents the uptake of the nerve-calming neuro-nutrient serotonin by the brain, so the benefits of taking this supplement are pretty fabulous.
VH Editorial: Seasonal Affective DisorderMagnolia Rhodiola Complex £26 for 60 Capsules

The Podium

I will put my hand right up now and tell you I am emotional; I will never change, I wear my heart on my sleeve and that goes across everything in my life, including what I write on the newsletters. To be vulnerable is to be human and that is the underlying theme of three of this month’s articles.

As I have said so many times, the girls have complete freedom to write about whatever subject they want. They are all award-winning journalists and I’m not (on both counts), so when I started to receive this month’s articles and I realized there was a theme running through them, the tears came because of their sheer honesty, so I decided to leap onto The Podium to say a few words.

I hope you do take the time to read them, but in short Sally Brampton actually writes about honesty; poignant as ever, I think I’ve read it at least seven times – it will resonate with so many of you; the title of Carolyn Asome’s article is ‘It’s Not All About You’, where she takes a look at the hurt we so often feel and why we care so much about what other people think of us and then Catherine Turner writes about the ‘Power of Words’ because the wrong words can cut deep.

Both Carolyn and Catherine cite social media in their articles as causes of stress and pain; I am not going to have a full-blown rant about social media here, but all I will say is that it has changed our world, not for the better either. Stress is known to be the root cause of 95% of illness in the Western world and the connection between social media and stress cannot and should not be dismissed.

I am often asked why we don’t do social media and the answer is very simple, I cannot condone a movement that makes people feel less and I detest bullying of any kind, by design or otherwise. This whole ‘look at me’ syndrome (me, me, me, me, me – it’s all about me) makes me want to vomit and yes we were once on Facebook and Twitter. We did it for two years, it made me extraordinarily unhappy and then I flipped, I took both of them down, I wrote about it on a newsletter and we were deluged with phone calls and emails applauding our stance.

I’ve learnt ‘never say never’, I once said I would never write that much on beauty brands and look what happened! If we ever do anything in that realm it will be different, so when you read these articles, know that you are not alone; it’s endemic, we need to change or social media will change us beyond recognition and we all need that human touch.
Honesty by Sally Brampton; It’s Not All About You by Carolyn Asome; The Power of Words by Catherine Turner

Neck Elasticity Catalyst (NEC)

Never too far away, more news on NIOD and the following email just about epitomises what most of you are saying about NIOD; I still can’t believe that NIOD hasn’t got to its first birthday yet, that will be in May. I’m wondering if Brandon will buy me a present to celebrate the occasion (hello B – shares would be good – double digits only please because I’m worth it!). I’ll let you know, but for now, this makes me extraordinarily happy:

‘In June last year I celebrated my 80th birthday. In preparation for this, at the end of 2014, I decided that I wouldn’t go down without a fight and started on a weight loss programme which has resulted in shedding 2.5 stone. This has made a huge difference to the way I feel and look, particularly by slimming down my face. I have always taken care of my skin over the years, which has paid off, but unfortunately the loss of padding resulted in the few wrinkles I did have becoming more noticeable.

In July, following an item in The Sunday Times, I decided to try CAIS. I found it great and have since gradually added in the other products in the range. I find it amazing – even slightly scary – in its effectiveness. Sometimes when I catch myself in a mirror I do a double take. I can also say that, almost without exception, people I have met up with, after a couple of months gap, comment on how well I look and last night a friend kept staring and asking what I had done as I look so well and younger.

I say it is slightly because how can just a few drops of liquid in three instances, plus HV and NEC, do so much more, in a relatively short time, than all the expensive creams of various makes I have tried over the years. Is it alchemy? Whatever it is please just keep it coming. At this rate by the time I am 90 I will be looking like my own daughter!’

After I wrote about using Neck Elasticity Catalyst (NEC) on the upper eyelid (after FECC of course), the emails and phone calls started to flood in with many of you noticing an almost immediate difference with eye creases disappearing as if by magic. There is nothing like a product having a double-whammy effect and I suppose I could say that you should use it anywhere where you feel you have lost ‘elasticity’, but that could become rather expensive. Head to head (or face to face) with the cost of plastic surgery – well it’s a cinch, but that’s just my opinion obviously.
Neck Elasticity Catalyst £50 for 50 ml; NIOD from £20

Cailyn Cosmetics

I am really happy to report that all the new Cailyn Cosmetic products are flying out the door, which of course makes me smile rather a lot as I am the girl that was never going to list make-up on our site and the accolades continue to roll in; the O! Circle Brush has just been featured in Vogue, the O! Wow Brush had an amazing write-up by Lisa Armstrong (thank you Lisa) in The Telegraph (In the Press) and the Beauty Bible girls posted the following about the 7-in-1 mascara.

‘We’re pretty keen on two-in-one make-up items, but 7-in-1 is a new record. And this is a pretty stupendous product. It’s from the same people who brought you the 02 Bubble Mask, Bounce It Aqua Memory Gel and the incredible O! Wow Brush. With that track record you can understand why we sat up and took notice when Gill shared her excitement over this.

The wand is just brilliant – nicely curved to get to lashes without over-coating or clogging. On the other end is a teensy-weensy brush which literally has never made it easier to access lower lashes. It lifts, separates, defines, builds, volumises and is waterproof too. In there is also a conditioning serum to ensure lashes don’t get brittle. Most importantly, there are built-in fibres to beef up your own lashes. Most fibre mascaras are a faff (albeit sometimes a worthwhile faff), but this adds the lashes as you sweep, in one go – and they stay put. There is just one shade, but so far as we’re concerned, there should be just one shade for mascara, full stop. And we just say: keep them coming Cailyn’.

As a PS to the above, I found a box under my desk which had about 50 of the original O! Wow Brushes; heaven knows what it was doing there, so I’m going to share them out. The first 50 people to buy any two Cailyn products will find one of these original brushes in their order and it is worth £20. It won’t show up on your invoice and I guess we will get through them pretty rapidly, so you need to be fast! ** Sorry, this promotion has now ended. **
7 In 1 Dual 4D Fiber Mascara £20; O! Circle Brush £35; Cailyn Cosmetics

Refined Sugar Ages Our Bodies

Refined sugar is ubiquitous in our culture; omitting the obvious sources of refined sugar such as confectionery and many carbonated drinks, sugar is the most common ingredient in food today, especially in processed foods.

Many people are simply unaware of the amount of sugar they consume since sugar is often hidden under less familiar names such as dextrose, maltose, high fructose corn syrup and maltodextrin, to name a few. There are actually nearly 60 different forms of sugars under different names and they may be present in over two thirds of processed foods.

A problem that many people also face is that they are simply unaware of the amount of sugar that they should consume on a daily basis, or how much they are actually consuming on a daily basis. Less than five decades ago, the average person consumed one pound (453 grams) of sugar per year. Current views are that a large percentage of the population are consuming between 110-230 grams of sugar per day, which is an astonishing statistic.

Sugar in moderate amounts is actually essential for the body. Being a carbohydrate, it supplies the body and the cells within our bodies with energy required to perform all the activities required throughout the day. The problem is that sugar is also a calorific food and if consumed in excess it can impact your health.

Refined sugar negatively affects every single gland within our bodies. The link between sugar and disease has been known for more than a decade and in recent years sugar has been under more scrutiny as scientists believe that many chronic diseases such as heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and liver disease may in great parts be associated with our addiction of refined sugar.

Refined sugar is implicated in causing vitamin and mineral imbalances in the body, particularly of calcium, chromium and vitamin E. Refined sugar leaches the reserve of vitamins and minerals stored in the body and the depletion of these nutrients prevents the rebuilding of tissues. Sugar also increases acidity in the body and in order to neutralise this acid state, the body leaches calcium out from bones and teeth, making them weaker and prone to degeneration.

Sugar metabolism produces specific compounds termed AGEs. The full name for AGEs is Advanced Glycation End products and they are toxic compounds found in most of the food we eat. They damage every cell, capillary, artery, vein and gland, including the genetic material within the body, and because they are oxidants, they deplete our antioxidant stores which are normally used to fight off these compounds. Refined sugar is a big culprit of AGEs production, but studies have shown that the correct supplementation can help keep sugar levels to within finite limits by reducing the production of AGEs.

Over 50 years of research has shown that chromium supplements effectively control blood sugar levels and that a deficiency of chromium can directly contribute to high blood sugar levels and pre-diabetic complications. One in three of the adult population are thought to be chromium deficient.

Scientists have discovered that the most important time to help regulate blood sugar is immediately after eating. During this period, blood sugar levels can spike dramatically inflicting low level damage, which is cumulative on all the glands and tissues within the body. Chromium helps reduce the time that these tissues are exposed to glucose and its metabolites.

As ever, it is really important that if you are taking supplementation it needs to be the most advanced product currently available. Optimized Chromium with Crominex 3+ contains chromium that is stabilised by the addition of two herbs, Indian gooseberry and Shilajit. Indian Gooseberry shields against glucose damage, whilst Shilajit, rich in Fulvic Acid, enhances cellular metabolism of glucose by transporting it to the cells.

Use of this supplementation will help keep glucose levels within the normal limits and will also prevent sugar spikes after each meal; I think we all know about that one!!
VH Editorial: Refined Sugar Ages Our BodyOptimized Chromium with Crominex 3+ £10.75 for 60 Capsules

News and Feedback

A few pieces of news and feedback to share with you and then it’s the wrap. Here we go:

Triple Flu Defense

‘I just had to write to you to let you know that I think this product is absolutely amazing. I was feeling really ghastly on Monday and woke up yesterday with a bad headache, total fatigue and just awful! I had to go to work yesterday and I had taken one dose on Monday evening and then three doses yesterday and by bedtime last night, started to feel so much better and I’m still fine now. I know I didn’t have what I call ‘full blown’ flu symptoms and I usually take Echinacea when I’m feeling unwell. I am very susceptible to viruses having had several bouts of glandular fever, but this Triple Flu Defense is highly recommended and does exactly what it says on the tin, so to speak.’
Triple Flu Defence (2015-2016) £25 for 30 ml

Hydration Vaccine

‘The most wonderful thing about Hydration Vaccine is that it keeps my weird rosacea oiliness under control. All day! Wow! Never have I known such a thing!’
Hydration Vaccine by NIOD £35 for 50 ml

Selixir Peace Balm

‘Can I just say that Selexir Peace Balm has been my saviour. My eczema was getting a bit out of control so I thought I needed something a little more potent, but less chemical based than medicated creams, so I ordered it last week. On Saturday I had a facial, but there must have been something in the products that didn’t agree with me (me: sounds familiar!) and my neck responded with a fierce, intensive ‘burn like rash’.

I tried all sorts of calming measures, but to no avail and the intense irritation persisted. On Monday Selexir Peace Balm arrived and I need to tell you that in two days my neck is more or less back to normal and has stopped itching. I can’t believe the transformation.’
Selixir Peace Balm £34.90 for 50 ml

Liposomal Encapsulated Vitamins

On last month’s newsletter I wrote all about Liposomal Encapsulated Vitamins, which was accompanied by an article written by Shabir. We highlighted two products, Liposomal C and Liposomal D and the response was unbelievable. If you missed what I wrote then you can read it here, but I just want to add that we are talking ‘next-generation’ supplementation here. So whatever C or D you are currently taking, finish what you have (we don’t like waste!) and then I am going to say ‘all change’. Nothing to add!
VH Editorial: What Are Liposomal Encapsulated VitaminsLiposomal C £20 for 225 ml; Liposomal D £15 for 225 ml

SilkSkin Pillowcases

I know that a lot of you love sleeping on silk pillowcases, so here is a little something for you. Each SilkSkin pillowcase is £44, but if you buy two together, which should be £88, we are taking off £18, whilst stocks last. That means that you save £18 (not too difficult to work out!). Sleep beautifully!
SilkSkin Original Silk Pillowcases Treat £70 (2 x SilkSkin Pillowcase)

We have come to the end of another newsletter; as you will have gathered I held this back for a week as we normally release the newsletter on the last Tuesday of every month. Two reasons, the first is because we released the January newsletter later than normal, I mean who on earth was going to read it (or even care) on the 29 December and the second reason is Brandon.

Let it be known that I am seriously going to beat him up one of these days; FM got delayed for over a week because of ingredient issues, so I delayed the newsletter release; no wonder he lives in Toronto, far away from me and my six inch (eight on a good day) heels. Once spiked, never forgotten – oh and one more thing, FM should arrive today, customs willing!

And so we come to the end of another newsletter; together with Shabir and the entire VH team, I thank you for your continued support and loyalty, it truly means so much.

Finally, finally – thank goodness The Good Wife is back; for all of you who mail me about The Good Wife – we are smiling because it is so, so fabulous. More 4 every Thursday night. That’s all!

With love

Gill x