BLOG: #DitchTheJunk to boost your immunity! | Breast Cancer UK

BLOG: #DitchTheJunk to boost your immunity!

Published 16 Sep 2016

It’s time to stop ‘Upping the Anti’ (bacterials) and time to #DitchTheJunk.

By way of introduction I should tell you upfront that despite being on Steve Wright in the afternoon on BBC Radio 2 – I am NOT the old woman, a fact lamented by many Hollywood Stars who long to meet the enigmatic character. But what you’ll certainly find me doing is banging on about Organic food, skincare, cleaning without chemicals, natural remedies – not to mention Balls and Nuts – more on that later…

Now Imperfectly Natural is the key word here – in fact it was in the titles of three of my books.  I’m no ‘Green Goddess’, I’m barely Lime, but I do take the ‘Small Change Big Difference’ approach and I’m passionate about encouraging everyone to live a little more simply, look to 100 per cent natural alternatives but without compromising on looking and feeling great.   If you are on a mission to prevent cancer and all manner of illnesses look to nature first, usually all you need is there.

A good way to start is to ditch the chemicals – sounds way too obvious but I meet many eco-warriors and even health freaks who omit to consider what they’re eating, wearing on their skin or are washing down their own sinks.  Start small and notice the impact, the good news is that the rise in availability of organic and natural products is huge.   A recent Mintel report said that there was a 40 per rise in organic skincare spending over 2 years. 

Ensure that the products you choose are also 100 per cent natural and preferably Soil Association accredited, look for what’s NOT in a product, the most ethical skincare companies will make it clear that their products contain no parabens, preservatives, sodium laurel sulphate or other synthetic chemicals.  Don’t put anything on your skin that you wouldn’t eat is the mantra and scientists say at least 60 per cent of what we put on our skin goes within.  If you’re dubious, think about how HRT cream works!  

A great place to start, to tick the eco box and to save money, is to opt for a natural deodorant,  don’t ever use anti-perspirant (what a flawed concept to block elimination! ) and look for a deo that doesn’t contain aluminium chlorohydrate.  I was once asked to argue against a ‘professor of skin’ on the topic of aluminium found in the tissue of women with breast cancer, he argued that aluminium is found in tea and other foodstuffs, my answer was that even if he was right, which I doubted, what about the other synthetic fragrances, phthalates, parabens and preservatives, in that very sensitive area.

It’s not just personal care products either, Statistics show that the average home is more polluted than a busy street corner, pollutants, fixtures, fittings, furnishings and the synthetic chemical products we bring into our home all add up to a ‘toxic soup’.  Emotive marketing has convinced us that we must create a sterile environment for our home to be safe & balanced for our children.   With the rise of the anti-biotic B resistant superbugs my view is that we should be ‘Anti the anti-bacterials’ - opt for plant derived green cleaners instead, but even then avoid anti-bacterials because they unbalance the microbial environment in your home. Anti-bacterials can’t discriminate, killing all the good, friendly, beneficial & essential bacteria too.

They take a long time to biodegrade, the driving force behind materials biodegrading is bacteria, so anti-bacterials can only degrade by taking something out of the environment – making the ‘environmentally friendly’ claim is tough to justify.  One solution is a Probiotic cleaner called Libby Chan (I’m not on commission!) full of friendly bacteria which puts positive microbes back into the environment.  Its cleaning power comes from the fermentation process of 100% edible ingredients which  can rebalance your home’s microbial environment. I’m a big fan of detergents that don’t need the ‘skull and crossbones’ ‘Call the Calvary style’ warning, I love Ecover’s slogan for their washing up liquid…’Does the dishes not the fishes’

As for Balls and Nuts,.. well Laundry balls work by changing the molecular structure of the water. Even funkier - Soapnuts have been used in India and Nepal for ever as detergents, you need a handful of soapnut shells in a little bag or sock straight in the drum, when they come into contact with water they create Saponin, or soap, cheap as chips! (and far healthier)  They look like truffles.  Don’t eat them though, unless you want to be literally foaming at the mouth!   You can of course go DIY with cleaning and laundry or if you want to buy gorgeous natural products check out Mangle and Wringer

Beware of the effects of Electro magnetic frequenices too,  we cant go back in time and live without technology but please please please don’t keep you smartphone in your breast-pocket, and don’t talk for too long on it either,  there are some excellent protective devices which can help.  In the home even NASA scientists recommend using  houseplants to literally soak up pollutants and diffuse the effects of electro magnetic frequencies (peace lillies and spider plants are great) through to making your own simple remedies for common ailments (you never need to darken the door of a pharmacy) but above all I have one top tip – be happy, even conventional doctors acquiesce that being positive and happy leads to an increased immunity and wellness.

Janey Lee Grace

You can find out more about Janey Lee Grace's work by visiting her website or following her on social media, details below: 


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Twitter: @janeyleegrace

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