WWB Introduces a ‘Positively’ Beautiful ‘Ideal Find’ and Our Next 2014 WWB Icon…

Jul 30, 2014 by

 

Ideal Find: The Positively Present Guide to Life, Every Day Matters Diary & Pocket Diary, & Positively Present Digital

 

Founder: Dani DiPirro, Author, Blogger & Illustrator

 

Authentic Dedication: Committed to helping others embrace the idea of “living happily ever after NOW, and living positively in the present moment.

 

 

 

 

2014

 

Lauroly Welcome- Welcome to World Wise Beauty Dani! You are now an official WWB Icon and I am so proud to make you one! You’re in very good select company! Our Icons celebrate inner beauty, seek wisdom and are truly dedicated to educating and enlightening other women. I am honored to have you join us. Wisdom comes from life experience and our willingness to learn from both and good experiences. And it also takes some excavating as I like to call it–a willingness to look deep within ourselves. Once we take that personal journey we can be ‘Comfortable In Our Own Skin’ and spend more time in the ‘present’. How is that for a perfect segue!

 

Lauroly Q- Before we get to your beautiful book and diaries, I would love if you would share a little bit about your own personal journey and how you became ‘comfortable in your own skin’. Tell us in your own words with the space limitations of a blog, how you found your way out of a dark place in your life?

 

Dani DiPirro: Before I share a bit about myself, I have to say thank you so much for including me in the selective world of WWB Icons. What an honor!

Getting to where I am now—living a positive and present life—has been quite a journey. In 2009, I hit a low point in my life and I knew I had to make some changes. It felt like everything—my career, my friendships, my love life, etc.—was going wrong. I’d tried everything I could to make myself happier, and nothing seemed to be working. One day it suddenly hit me: nothing outside of me could change me. I had to change myself—and that would have to start with changing my attitude toward life. At that point, I started spending a great deal of time thinking about what I really, truly wanted in my life, and I came to the conclusion that I wanted to be positive and I wanted to be present (two things I’d never really been before). It was then that the concept of Positively Present was born.

I started documenting my journey online at PositivelyPresent.com. As the site grew and I received so many positive responses, I became even more passionate about what I was doing on the site. I’d always wanted to be a writer, but I would never have imagined I’d be writing about positivity. (As a kid, my nickname was Eeyore due to the fact that I tended to see the world from beneath the negative haze of a rain cloud.) As the years past, I realized I wanted Positively Present to be more than just a hobby. I wanted to make it a career.

In early 2012, I left my full-time job doing marketing for a financial services company to pursue Positively Present full time. And in October 2012, I published my first book, Stay Positive: Daily Reminders from Positively Present. (You can check out the book—and watch the video trailer!—on StayPositive365.com.) Since then, I’ve written multiple e-books, signed a book deal, and even started doing some graphic design work (something I’d never even considered doing until I opened up my mind and life with more positivity).


 

Diary & Organizer Calendar

Lauroly Q- What a beautiful inspiration you are Dani. I think it’s wonderful how you have taken your artistic talent and combined it with a communication platform that helps others to live positively. What sets all your creative projects apart is you go beyond ‘positive sentiment’.  You help us see that it’s more than just a positive mindset but also how we use our positive energy to seize each day. Your lovely ‘Every Day Matters’ Diaries are beautifully designed and highly organized. What I really love is they offer inspirational tips and exercises throughout the calendar year to help us tackle each day with small positive actions.

 This leads me to your upcoming book to be released in December. Tell us what we will find in your new book “The Positively Present Guide to Life–How to Make the Most of Every Moment’.  I can’t wait to read it and I will be sure to feature it in my ‘Ideal Finds’ Holiday Gift Guide.

Dani DiPirro: Thank you for your kind words about my website and the Every Day Matters diaries. I’m looking forward to keeping inspired and organized in the New Year with them. As for my new book (available late December 2014), I’m thrilled to share some information with you about it. The Positively Present Guide to Life is a handbook for those looking for action-oriented, inspiring advice to help them live more positive and present lives. On the surface, it’s practical wisdom for making the most of every moment. But on a deeper level it’s about how choosing to live a positively present life is a skill that can be learned and, once put into practice, can transform every aspect of one’s life—including home, work, relationships, romance, and change.

Pocket Diary & Calendar

By the end of the book, readers will have learned the six essential principles of living a positively present life and will know how to use those principles to create a nurturing home, build a fulfilling career, develop great relationships, appreciate true love, and embrace change. Best of all, readers have excellent opportunities to practice these principles via the exercises featured in each of the book’s 30 sections and be inspired by the many uplifting illustrations featured throughout the book.

Lauroly Q It sounds like the perfect guide! And I like the word ‘guide’ too because often positive sentiment falls flat if we don’t know how to translate them to our everyday living. Before you go Dani, I have one last question. I am starting a new ritual in the form of a very personal question for all my experts, authors and gurus who join me at WWB. What one profound quote inspires you personally in your life and why does it resonate with you so much? 

Dani DiPirro: As a writer, I adore words and quotes so it’s difficult for me to choose just one inspiring quote, but I’d have to say that one of my favorites right now comes from the book Wild by Cheryl Strayed. In the book, she writes: “Trusting yourself means living out what you already know to be true.” Sometimes it can be difficult to dig deep into yourself and identify what’s true. For me, I think I always knew, deep down, that living a positive, present life would be the best way to be happy, fulfilled, and at peace, but for so long I was hesitant to believe that truth, favoring the quick fix of negativity instead. If I’d really listened—really trusted myself—I would have discovered that I could, in fact, live what I knew to be true. Living out your truth—whatever that truth might be—isn’t always easy, but it is the best way to trust, respect, and love yourself and your life.

Lauroly Closing: Thanks so much for visiting World Wise Beauty and hope to have you back soon Dani!  My readers can pre-order Dani’s book via Amazon.com and BarnesandNoble.com and will be in stores and online December 30, 2014.

 

 

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Culture Wise: Major Shifts in Food Culture Gaining Momentum from France to America…

Jul 24, 2014 by

 

 

 

 

 

 

The world is our oyster at World Wise Beauty and we are serving up a ‘cultural cocktail’ of ideals for you to explore. When I was producing events here in the U.S and working closely with the spa industry, the thing that impressed me greatly was the industry’s openness to embrace global influences and wellness practices from around the world. From ancient healing rituals of the Far East to old European traditions, the spa experience is all about blending philosophies old and new, and adopting cultural ideologies and methodologies to create the ideal experience for you. Like the spa world, World Wise Beauty aims to explore ideals for wellness culture and glean wisdom from around the world. 

Our new department ‘Culture Wise’ will help you stay on top of significant cultural shifts in wellness culture, which often come from places outside our borders, and strongly influence our local culture and lifestyles. Sometimes we’ll  delve in deep and explore global practices and philosophies in-depth and other times we’ll provide a glean of what might be coming your way. Let’s mix it up…

As Margaret Mead said so wisely “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has”. So let’s see what some ‘citizens of the world’ are up to today with my first “Culture Wise’ glean. We are off to France where ‘joie de vivre’, and eating in particular, is taken very seriously and cultural values are deeply embedded in the fabric of their lives. After reading these two gleans, I hope it inspires you to think about where you food comes from and you come back to ‘Culture Wise’ to explore both local and global influences in wellness culture. No passport required!

Truly Herself,
Lauroly

The  ‘Culture Wise’ Glean

 

WWB RECAP: Is this homemade? Ahh mon chéri what does this little detail matter? Apparently a great deal to the French people. Where here in the U.S the people have demanded restaurant chains report the calorie count of foods on the menu, the French want to know if the food prepared in their dining establishments is homemade!  Yes this is true and they passed a law! Do you think we will ever get this law passed here in the U.S? Well one demand at a time as there is another huge cultural shift taking America by storm regarding GMO foods. See links below for both ‘culture wise’ stories…

Excerpt (below) from NPR SALT:French Restaurant Law Stirs Controversy

If you go to France this summer, you might notice a new logo in restaurant windows or on menus. It’s a simple graphic of a rooftop covering a saucepan, and it’s supposed to designate fait maison, or homemade. It’s designed to highlight places that make their own dishes rather than bringing in frozen or sous vide — prepared meals cooked in a water bath, sealed in airtight plastic bags and designed to be heated up later. More on this story here…

 

 

WWB RECAP: To give us cultural perspective I had to share this additional story which you may be more familiar with. What is obvious from both my gleans is consumers world-wide are demanding transparency and want to know what is in their foods, personal care products, household cleaners and dietary supplements. What is great about the digital world is we can find more detailed information on websites and social platforms which allow us to become more educated on what’s in the products we purchase. But sometimes clever marketing tactics deceive us and there is no genuine transparency and this is where politics and policy making comes into the picture. The GMO issue or more accurately the non-GMO movement is gaining momentum here in the U.S.  See what major food manufacturers in the U.S are doing behind closed doors to get ahead of this major food culture shift and how they are responding to consumer demands. Well sort of anyway…

 

 

 

Excerpt (below) from NPR SALT: Some Food Companies are Quietly Dumping GMO ingredients 

Even Ben & Jerry’s, so vocal in its anti-GMO stance, has a conflict, of sorts. It may have eliminated GMOs, but it’s still owned by Unilever, which put a lot of money toward fighting labeling legislation in California and belongs to the GMA. That might make things sticky for Ben & Jerry’s CEO Solheim. More on this story here…

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WWB Introduces ‘The Watch’ –A News Alert Featuring the Latest Developments in Wellness Culture

Jul 16, 2014 by


 


 

THE WATCH: I am introducing this new WWB department to help keep you informed about major developments in wellness culture. I know how busy we all are and sometimes we miss or gloss over important news stories. ‘The Watch’ will only feature major developments in the beauty, health and wellness sectors and my mission with this department is to keep the ‘news developments that matter’ on your radar. The following article below is a major development in the nutrition and food sector for your review. Sometimes there are not perfect conclusions to studies and this is why we should always WATCH and seek out balanced and measured reports whenever an important study like this hits the media. Health studies in particular often become reduced to fast ‘sound-bites’ in the news and now more than ever it is important to watch and weigh the findings when new studies are released. Keep in mind, I am not making any conclusions for you here, and only strive to encourage ‘deeper inquiry’ before leaping to any definitive conclusions. ~Truly Herself, Lauroly

NEW STUDY & FINDINGS: There has been an ongoing argument on whether eating organic foods is healthier than eating conventionally grown foods, but now it looks as though a major study has given us some ‘proof in the puddin’ that eating organic is overall a better choice for us and the environment. But wait, hold on, don’t drink the Kool-Aid just yet! See the recent NYT article below for more details on the study. Discover how the experts weigh in and then be your own wise guru when it comes to your food purchases. I especially appreciate the quotes from Dr. Marion Nestle. Her degrees include a Ph.D. in molecular biology and an M.P.H. in public health nutrition, both from the University of California, Berkeley. For a quick takeaway, see her comments and conclusions about this major study at the end of the NYT article below. I find myself agreeing with her assessments and this is why…

Dr. Nestle has been featured here at WWB in our Healthy Epicurean department and is the author of Food Politics: How the Food Industry Influences Nutrition and Health (2002, paperback 2003) and Safe Food: The Politics of Food Safety(2003, paperback 2004), both from University of California Press. In 2003, Food Politics won awards from the Association for American Publishers (outstanding title in allied health), James Beard Foundation (literary), and World Hunger Year (Harry Chapin media). Safe Food won the Steinhardt School of Education’s Griffiths Research Award in 2004.

I highly recommend following her digital blog FOOD POLITICS  if you seek wise, grounded, and penetrating coverage of the food industry and want to learn more on how both industry and politics have a huge impact on your food and diet. See my WWB Q&A with her here to learn more about her latest bestseller ‘Why Calories Count’ from Science to Politics’. Dr. Nestle is dedicated to education and her overall body of work will help you decode the findings of studies before you implement any change in your health regimen.

Hope you appreciate the new WWB department! As I always say, be wise and do what’s best for your own bio-individuality and lifestyle. But keep in mind that ‘we’ as a collective society and culture can agree on important things-and clean food free of pesticides might be something we can all get on board with! 😉

Truly Herself,
Lauroly

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Study of Organic Crops Finds Fewer Pesticides

and More Antioxidants

By  

  
A hydroponic greenhouse in Connecticut. An estimate says that domestic organic food sales reached $32.3 billion last year. Credit Christopher Capozziello for The New York Times
Adding fuel to the debates over the merits of organic food, a comprehensive review of earlier studies found substantially higher levels of antioxidants and lower levels of pesticides in organic fruits, vegetables and grains compared with conventionally grown produce.

“It shows very clearly how you grow your food has an impact,” said Carlo Leifert, a professor of ecological agriculture at Newcastle University in England, who led the research. “If you buy organic fruits and vegetables, you can be sure you have, on average, a higher amount of antioxidants at the same calorie level.”

However, the full findings, to be published next week in the British Journal of Nutrition, stop short of claiming that eating organic produce will lead to better health.

“We are not making health claims based on this study, because we can’t,” Dr. Leifert said. The study, he said, is insufficient “to say organic food is definitely healthier for you, and it doesn’t tell you anything about how much of a health impact switching to organic food could have.”

  

CreditPaul O. Boisvert for The New York Times

A review of earlier studies found significant differences between organic and conventionally grown produce.

Still, the authors note that other studies have suggested some of the antioxidants have been linked to a lower risk of cancer and other diseases.

The conclusions in the new report run counter to those of a similar analysis published two years ago by Stanford scientists, who found few differences in the nutritional content of organic and conventionally grown foods. Those scientists said the small differences that did exist were unlikely to influence the health of the people who chose to buy organic foods, which are usually more expensive.

The Stanford study, like the new study, did find pesticide residues were several times higher on conventionally grown fruits and vegetables, but played down the significance, because even the higher levels were largely below safety limits.

Organic farming, by and large, eliminates the use of conventional chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Those practices offer ecological benefits like healthier soils but produce less bountiful harvests. The Organic Trade Association, an industry organization, estimated organic food sales last year in the United States at $32.3 billion, or just over 4 percent of the total market.

What is disputed, vociferously, is whether organic fruits and vegetables provide a nutritional lift. Many naysayers regard organic as a marketing ploy to charge higher prices.

“The other argument would be, if you just eat a little bit more fruits and vegetables, you’re going to get more nutrients,” said Alan D. Dangour, a researcher at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Dr. Dangour led a review published in 2009 that found no significant nutritional differences between conventional and organic foods.

Such differences are difficult to discern, because other factors that can vary widely from place to place and year to year, like the weather, also influence the nutrients. Even if differences exist, it is unclear whether they would affect consumer health.

In the new study, an international team of scientists did not conduct any laboratory or field work of their own. Instead, they compiled a database from 343 previously published studies and performed a statistical procedure known as a meta-analysis, which attempts to ferret robust bits of information from studies of varying designs and quality.

Some of the studies reported many measurements, some only a few. Some included several crops grown over multiple years, while others looked at only a few samples. But if done properly, the results of a meta-analysis can be greater than the average of its parts.

Over all, organic crops contained 17 percent more antioxidants than conventionally grown crops, the new study found. For some classes of antioxidants, the difference was larger. A group of compounds known as flavanones, for example, were 69 percent higher in the organic produce. (At very high quantities, as in some supplements, some antioxidants have been shown to be harmful, but the levels in organic produce were not nearly that high.)

The researchers said they analyzed the data in several different ways, and each time the general results remained robust.

The study cost $429,000, which came from the European Union and the Sheepdrove Trust, a British charity that supports organic farming research. The scientists said the money came with no strings, and their research passed the rigor of scientific peer review for publication.

Charles M. Benbrook, a professor at Washington State University and another author of the paper, said this analysis improved on earlier reviews, in part because it incorporated recent new studies.

The findings fit with the expectation that without pesticides, plants would produce more antioxidants, many of which serve as defenses against pests and disease.

The study also found that organically produced foods, particularly grains, contain lower levels of cadmium, a toxic metal that sometimes contaminates conventional fertilizers. Dr. Benbrook said the researchers were surprised by that finding; there was no difference in other toxic metals like mercury and lead.

Even with the differences and the indications that some antioxidants are beneficial, nutrition experts said the “So what?” question had yet to be answered.

“After that, everything is speculative,” said Marion Nestle, a professor of nutrition, food studies and public health at New York University. “It’s a really hard question to answer.”

Dr. Nestle said she buys organic foods, because she believes they are better for the environment and wants to avoid pesticides. “If they are also more nutritious, that’s a bonus,” she said. “How significant a bonus? Hard to say.”

She continued: “There is no reason to think that organic foods would be less nutritious than conventional industrial crops. Some studies in the past have found them to have more of some nutrients. Other studies have not. This one looked at more studies and has better statistics.”

Dr. Dangour, however, remained entirely unconvinced. He said the researchers erred in not excluding the weaker studies from the analysis. “To my mind, there’s no convincing evidence that these foods are different in nutritional composition,” he said.

 

 

 

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Ideal Find: ‘I AM A WOMAN’ –Not Just Another Pretty Face, Country Star Celebrates the Multifaceted Woman with Healing Music, Tributes, & Photography

Jul 2, 2014 by

 

‘I AM A WOMAN’ BOOK & CD COLLECTION

 

Ideal Find: ‘I AM A WOMAN’ Book and CD Duo

 

 

Founder: Mary Sue Englund. ( co-writer of song Thom Shepherd)

 

 

Authentic Dedication: To celebrate courageous woman from all walks of life with healing music, words and photography.

 

 

 

Lauroly Opening- Welcome to World Wise Beauty Mary Sue! You are the first musician I have interviewed at WWB but I must say it is hard to put any label on you because you are really such a multi-faceted creative artist. The ‘I am A Woman’ project is a book and cd combo and what a beautiful artistic endeavor it is. You basically wrote and recorded a song and then brought the song’s lyrics to life with beautiful photographs of inspirational women in a book. For example one line from your song is ‘and I am a diary full of dreams’ and there is a lovely photograph of Anne Frank with a small dedication about her legacy. The selection of women is very eclectic. From Eleanor Roosevelt to Dolly Parton, you present the many faces of strong women. I love the creative selection and how perfectly each woman fits your song lyrics. While each selection is amazing I personally love the photograph of you and your Mom which accompanies the lyrics ‘but most times I am still that little girl’. Just so sweet…

You have been a harmony vocalist, pianist and violinist for Pam Tillis the celebrated country legend for 10 years and in your spare time have produced 5 self-penned albums of your own. We are already very impressed! But let’s begin with your wonderful ‘I am A Woman’ project. Can you share with us how you were inspired to bring it to life? Did it all start with writing the song? 

Mary Sue Englund: Lauroly, thank you for your kind words, and for taking an interest in I AM A WOMAN. It did start as song, and the title came from my co-writer, Thom Shepherd, who is pretty fantastic. He wrote country #1s, such as ‘REDNECK YACHT CLUB’ and ‘RIDING WITH PRIVATE MALONE.’ He wanted to write a song to celebrate women. So, we started compiling a list of qualities of the women in our lives who we love: our moms, sisters, and dear friends. During the time that we were writing the song, my mother in law was diagnosed with breast cancer. Hence, we wrote the line about the pink ribbon. It was an honor to write this song. After performing it a few times in concert, I realized what a profound affect it was having for our audiences. I wanted to make this song tangible, so I started the journey of creating the book. My mother is a book publisher, and I design all of her books (my other job!), so putting it together seemed like an obvious journey. Finding the women for the book was a privilege and a pleasure.

 

New CD, Mary Sue Englund

Lauroly Q- After the success of the ‘I Am A Woman’ book/cd project you were inspired to write a complete album of healing songs and will take this album on the road as a ‘healing concert series’. I can imagine how rewarding it must be to bring your beautiful music to cancer patients and caregivers. What I love about your new album “The Beat Goes On’ is the lyrics aren’t schmaltzy and nor are they dark. The sentiment of the album speaks to resilience and hope. All women can relate to managing the trials of life and tapping into the inner strength it takes to survive the hills and valleys. What kind of facilities do you tour and what has been your personal experience performing for this particular audience? 

Mary Sue Englund:  Thank you for listening to the album and I am so glad that you like it! I truly enjoy performing “healing concerts,” which is simply a concert of “healing songs” that I have written. I have gone through a lot of crazy challenges in my lifes’ journey, such as losing my sister to violence and watching my own mother fight cancer. Music is the thing that saves me, so I knew that it must be important to others as well. I play any kind of venue, from living room to a hospital waiting room to a community center or a theater. I go where folks need the music!

 

Mary Sue Englund/Healing Concert/Hospital

 

Lauroly Q- In your promotional material you are quoted saying “We go where the music is needed’. How do you envision the ‘healing concert series’ developing? You can take your concert to small intimate setting like a hospital waiting rooms or large music venues and theaters. How will you package your concert series moving forward? You have already performed at the Grand Ole Opry many times–how thrilling was that?!

 

Click For ‘I AM A WOMAN’ Music Video

 

Mary Sue Englund: Standing on the Grand Ole Opry stage is always a thrill. I have been honored to perform there regularly for the past 11 years. It is truly exciting every time! As far as my healing concerts developing? That is a question that I am leaving up to God. I take a little step every day and see where the journey takes me. I was asked recently to give a motivational talk to a group of attorneys for their retreat. That wasn’t what I expected to be asked to do, but it was quite a privilege. It will be wonderful to watch it all unfold. So, if you know a group who would like a healing concert, please send them my way!

 

Lauroly Closing: Attorneys are human too and I am sure they will love your work! Thank you so much for joining me at World Wise Beauty Mary Sue. I am honored to share your beautiful and sensitive work with my readers and happy to promote your project in any way I can. YOU are truly a ‘Ideal Find’ and I am sure everyone will agree with me once they see the book and hear your music. The “I Am A Woman” book/cd is a lovely gift for any woman who needs encouragement and inspiration. And that would be all of us! For more information on purchasing her book or booking a concert with Mary Sue, please visit her website to learn more. 

Truly Herself,
Lauroly

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