Imagine Breathing in Refreshing Forest Air

The smell of nature in the air is so sweet! Did you know that this enticing smell is not only a sensory pleasure but actually an aspect of preventive health in Japanese medicine? Called Shinrin-Yoku, its literal translation is “forest bathing.” Though any kind of nature can enhance our health and happiness, there’s something special about being in a forest.

The Japanese Society of Forest Medicine, headed by Dr. Qing Li, promotes research on the therapeutic effects of forests on human health and educates people on the practice of forest bathing, which involves slowly walking through a forest, taking in the atmosphere through all your senses and enjoying the benefits.1 In 1982, Japan launched a national program to encourage forest bathing and by 2004, a formal study of the link between forests and human health had begun in Iiyama, a place known for its lush, green forests. Now, more than 2.5 million people walk those forest trails as a way to ease stress and enhance health.2

After years of study, Dr. Qing Li has found that spending time in a forest can help reduce stress, anxiety, depression and anger! The result is a boost to the immune system, improved cardiovascular and metabolic health and an increase in the feeling of overall well-being.3

In the western world, exercise is the primary solution for promoting cardiovascular, metabolic and mental health. When you are walking through a forest and inhaling that natural air, you’re not only getting moderate exercise but also hanging out with trees, which turns out to be an important part of preventive health. Dr. Qing Li discovered this when he was a stressed-out student and went on a week of forest camping. He returned feeling restored both physically and mentally, so much so that it inspired him to research forests and their benefits on human well-being.

Those of us who don’t have easy access to a forest and forest bathing, can have the next best thing. Since indoor air quality is often worse than outdoor air, how soothing would it be to have forest-like air in doors? How much would we benefit from breathing natural forest-like air in our own homes?

Say hello to the KenkoAir Purifier®. Its middle name is HEPA 13 and it can filter air particles so small that they’re not visible to the naked eye. Due to negative-ion technology, you receive filtered air that simulates what’s found in nature—nature as in forests and lakes. In other words, you’re getting as close to forest bathing as you can without actually hanging out with the trees.

In keeping with the Nikken pledge to be in harmony with nature, the KenkoAir Purifier operates ozone-free so it’s non-toxic. It has a reusable pre-filter which can be washed and the other filters can be replaced easily every six months. You breathe cleaner air and decrease your carbon footprint at the same time—a win-win situation you can enjoy year-round, as long as you remember to replace the filters on time. If you live somewhere that has especially dense air quality, replace the filters more often. Every time you see the red light is on, you’ll know your KenkoAir Purifier is cranking so your air gets cleaner.

Lately, even the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) is recommending the use of a HEPA air filter in homes. Don’t wait for visible signs of bad air to show up in your home. Mold, mildew, musty odors, dust and dander can all be addressed with good filtration. You don’t have to wait long to feel and smell the benefits from the KenkoAir Purifier.

From now through September 15, take advantage of our state-of-the-art filtration systems: all filters are 20% off. These are Active Wellness filters for the KenkoAir Purifier®, PiMag Waterfall®, PiMag® Sport Bottle and PiMag MicroJet® Showers (both hand held and wall mount models) and PiMag® mineral stones.

1, 2, 3 https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/why_forest_bathing_is_good_for_your_health

Water is the Best Drink for Children

Water is life, and all plants and animals require water to live. As part of the animal kingdom, humans are the only ones who do not drink water and mother’s milk exclusively for survival. This complicates human survival, because along with milk, plain water is the best choice for children; yet contemporary lifestyles commonly allow for juices, sugary sodas and artificially flavored beverages.

Water has zero calories, keeps joints, bones and teeth healthy, helps the blood circulate and can help children maintain a healthy weight into adulthood. A well hydrated child tends to have better mood, memory and attention span as well as concentration and focus.1

Just as water is best, here are some other guidelines for children:

• No sugar-sweetened beverages for children younger than two years of age. Limit them for older children as much as possible. This includes sports and energy drinks, juice cocktails, sodas, lemonade, and sweetened water. These drinks add “empty calories” to the diet, can be filling and leave kids less hungry for the nutritious foods they really need. Sometimes sodas and energy drinks contain caffeine, which may overstimulate many children.

• Even 100% juice should be strictly limited. While juice may contain some vitamins, these drinks are high in sugar and calories and low in the healthy fiber found in whole fruit. Because of its sweet taste, once children are offered juice, it can be difficult to get them to drink plain water. Keep these amounts in mind:2

•Children less than a year should not drink any juice at all.

            •Children one to three years of age should have no more than four oz per day.

            •For older children, juice is only recommended if whole fruits are not available. Children ages four to six years: no more than four to six oz per day, and for children ages seven to 18, no more than eight oz per day.

Avoid artificially-sweetened drinks. Health risks for children from artificial sweeteners are not well understood, so it is safest to avoid these drinks. Instead, make water readily available to encourage healthy drinking and establish Active Wellness habits.

• Milk may be beneficial, whether animal-sourced or plant-sourced. However, flavored milk can be much higher in sugars. Even though children still get the benefits of the calcium and vitamins found in flavored milk, the added sugars may create a preference for sweet flavors, which can make it difficult to have success when offering regular milk.

Children are at a greater risk of dehydration than adults because in relation to their size, they have a larger proportion of skin that is exposed to heat.3  Also, children don’t always recognize when they’re thirsty, and if they’re not encouraged and reminded with water, may forget to drink and rehydrate.

We can help children create healthy habits by being good role models and drinking plenty of filtered water. We also can teach them respect for the environment and to carry a re-usable water bottle to avoid single-use plastics. Children are like sponges and learn quickly, so we can start them off right with clean, alkalizing PiMag® water.

Tap into the power of hydration with our four Water Packs, available through the end of April! Each pack has two state-of-the-art PiMag® products. You get one at the regular price and the second at 50% off! You have your choice of two PiMag MicroJet® Wall Mount Shower Systems or two PiMag MicroJet® Handheld Shower Systems, both of which help neutralize chemicals, two PiMag® Sport Bottles of 100% recyclable biogreen materials, or two PiMag Waterfalls® that can help reduce bacteria by 99.99%.

1, 2 https://www.healthychildren.org/English/healthy-living/nutrition/Pages/Choose-Water-for-Healthy-Hydration.aspx#:~:text=It%20good%20for%20the%20body,sports%20drinks%2C%20sodas%20and%20juice.

3 https://healthy-kids.com.au/parents/children-hydration/

Hydration and Moisturization: We Need Both for Healthy Skin

The word “hydration” is connected to water. Hydrating the skin therefore means increasing its water content. Hydrated skin is smooth, glowing and has an even tone. When skin is dehydrated, it can appear flaky, dull and dry. However, people often tend to confuse dehydrated skin with dry skin. Although used synonymously, there is an underlying difference between the two. Dehydrated skin lacks water, whereas dry skin lacks a fair amount of sebum, which is the oil secreted by the sebaceous glands present in the skin. Dry skin can also be the result of certain medications or disorders.1

How can we tell the difference between dry skin and dehydrated skin? The two have notably different indicators. Dry skin may present as itchy, red, flaky and irritated, while dehydrated skin may show up as dull, wrinkly, lined, puffiness and shadows around the eyes, dry mouth and increased sensitivity.2

There are ways to hydrate the skin but there are also ways to moisturize it. Hydration and moisturization actually involve two separate processes. Hydration of the skin occurs when we add water to it. It temporarily fills skin cells to give it a fuller feel. It’s temporary because skin releases water when there is nothing to help retain it—the most obvious way is through perspiration but exposure to wind, sun and other elements expedite the discharge of water.

Drinking a lot of water, in and of itself, cannot help hydrate skin unless you are actually dehydrated. Those who stay hydrated cannot drink copious amounts to help improve skin’s texture or radiance. Skin is actually the last part of the body that water reaches, as it flows to all the other organs first. However, drinking ample amounts of water does help rid the body and skin of toxins.

Moisturization is a necessary partner for hydration, because it involves adding ingredients into the skin to help prevent water loss. When moisture is retained by the skin, it enables skin’s natural ability to renew and repair to occur, improving texture and overall skin health.

Retaining the moisture in the skin is a complex science, but dermatologists generally agree that hyaluronic acid, glycerin, urea, ceramides and antioxidant vitamins A, C and E are among the most beneficial ingredients to add into creams and serums.3 These ingredients come in many variations and may be known by other “INCI”(International Nomenclature Cosmetic Ingredient) names; for example, tocopherol, sodium hyaluronate, ascorbic acid, lipids from oils and seaweeds and so forth.

The True Elements® Marine Organic Skincare range takes moisturization to a high level with its emphasis on sustainably farmed seaweeds that contain naturally-occurring antioxidants, beneficial acids, salts and oils. You can feel secure knowing that all True Elements® skincare products are COSMOS Organic certified by EcoCert, pH balanced and naturally fragranced. The range does not contain parabens, phenoxyethanol, PEGs, phthalates, EDTA, GMO ingredients or synthetic coloring.

Combining hydration, by drinking enough PiMag water, and moisturization, by using True Elements® Marine Organic skincare, is a bona fide way to maintain high energy levels and vibrant-looking skin. Tap into the power of hydration the entire month of March with our four Water Packs! Each pack has two state-of-the-art PiMag® products. You get one at the regular price and the second at 50% off! You have your choice of two PiMag MicroJet® Wall Mount Shower Systems or two PiMag MicroJet® Handheld Shower Systems, both of which help neutralize chemicals, two PiMag® Sport Bottles of 100% recyclable biogreen materials, or two PiMag Waterfalls® that can help reduce bacteria by 99.99%.

1,2,3,4 https://skinkraft.com/blogs/articles/how-to-hydrate-your-skin

Groundwater: Making the Invisible Visible

World Water Day is celebrated globally once a year to consciously recognize the importance of providing affordable, lasting access to safe water. It became a United Nations observance day in 1993 to focus attention on the global water crisis. Now World Water Day takes place on March 22 annually.

The theme of World Water Day for 2022 is “Groundwater: Making the Invisible Visible.” World Water Day draws attention to water scarcity globally and every year, the theme is based on an important aspect of water. Groundwater is important around the world because it is the most abundant source of freshwater on earth.1 It is water that is located beneath the earth’s surface in the pores and crevices of rocks and soil. These layers of soil, sand, rock and gravel that contain usable quantities of groundwater are called aquifers.

Groundwater is invisible, but its impact is visible everywhere. Out of sight, under our feet, groundwater is a hidden treasure that enriches our lives. In the driest parts of the world, it may be the only water people have. Almost all of the freshwater in the world is groundwater, supporting drinking water supplies, sanitation systems, farming, industry and ecosystems. In many places, human activities over-use and pollute groundwater. In other places, we simply do not know how much water is down there, which means we could be failing to harness a potentially vital water resource.2

Accounting for about 97% of non-frozen fresh water on earth, groundwater is an important natural resource that contributes to human development. Approximately 50% of the world’s population drinks ground water daily, and it is critical for sustaining rural populations that are located away from surface water and infrastructure with manmade plumbing.3

Groundwater is a vital resource that provides almost half of all drinking water worldwide, about 40% of water for irrigated agriculture and about one third of water required for industry. Despite these impressive facts and figures, invisible groundwater is out of sight and out of mind for most people. Human activities, including population and economic growth, as well as climate variability, are rapidly increasing the pressure on groundwater resources. Serious depletion and pollution problems are reported for many parts of the world.4

There are now 468 identified aquifer systems identified, underlying almost every nation, increased from 366 in 2015. Groundwater does not stop flowing at political borders and huge resources are stored in what are known as “transboundary aquifers.” 40% of the world’s available water is transboundary. The identification, mapping, assessment and development of control mechanisms for transboundary aquifers (TBAs) are important tasks for ensuring the sustainability of these resources and peaceful cooperation between countries.5

The assessment of global groundwater resources is one of the core activities of The International Groundwater Resources Assessment Centre. (IGRAC) is a United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) center that works under the auspices of World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and is supported by the Government of The Netherlands. IGRAC facilitates and promotes global sharing of information and knowledge. about groundwater. IGRAC addresses the major issue of groundwater being overused in many areas, where more water is extracted from aquifers than is recharged by rain and snow. In addition, groundwater pollution is a particular problem that can take decades or even centuries to recover from. 

Exploring, protecting and sustainably using groundwater will be central to surviving and adapting to climate change and meeting the needs of a growing population. The 2022 World Water Day spotlights groundwater as an invisible yet valuable resource, and strives to enhance knowledge exchange and collaboration to increase awareness of the importance of taking care of our groundwater.

Water is Life and Nikken is doing its part to help people access clean water for Active Wellness—not only for drinking, but also for bathing. For the entire month of March, we are focusing on the Power of Hydration and offering four Water Packs. Each pack has two state-of-the-art PiMag® products. You get one at the regular price and the second at 50% off! You have your choice of two PiMag MicroJet® Wall Mount Shower Systems or two PiMag MicroJet® Handheld Shower Systems, both of which help neutralize chemicals, two PiMag® Sport Bottles of 100% recyclable biogreen materials, or two PiMag® Waterfalls that can help reduce bacteria by 99.99%.

1,3 https://www.un-igrac.org/resource/transboundary-aquifers-world-map-2021

https://www.worldwaterday.org/

4,5 https://www.un-igrac.org/news/groundwater-making-invisible-visible-theme-world-water-day-2022

Stay Fluid to Prevent Dehydration

Dehydration occurs when the body loses more water than is taken in. It is often accompanied by disturbances in the body’s mineral salt or electrolyte balance – especially in the concentrations of sodium and potassium.1

The body typically loses about two to three liters (68 to 101 fluid ounces) of water daily through breathing, perspiring and the dual processes of eliminating liquid and solid waste. This water loss needs to be replaced on a daily basis. If water is lost from the bloodstream, the body can compensate somewhat by shifting water from cells into the blood vessels, but this is a short-term solution.

As the body loses water, it’s also losing minerals, especially sodium and potassium. This may lead to dehydration. Depending on the ratio of water to electrolyte loss, dehydration can be classified as isotonic, hypertonic or hypotonic. Isotonic dehydration takes place when both water and sodium (salt) are lost in equal amounts. Hypertonic dehydration occurs when more water is lost than sodium, and hypotonic dehydration is the opposite with more sodium lost than water.

According to the European Hydration Institute, about 20-30% of our fluid intake comes from food with 70-80% from beverages of all types, not just plain water.2 Having a variety of beverages actually helps people drink up to 50% more liquids than if only water was available.3 The International Life Sciences Institute recognizes the importance of variety in maintaining hydration, especially for children and the elderly, two groups most vulnerable to dehydration.

Recovering from dehydration can be done at home as long as it’s not severe. A loss of 1% of body weight can generally be replaced within 24 hours. Mild dehydration is characterized by thirst, headache, dizziness and/or fatigue. Loss of 4% of body weight may result in lack of concentration, irritability, sleepiness and increases in body temperature and in respiratory rates. Loss of 10% of body weight can be fatal as it affects cardiovascular function.4

We can be mildly or moderately dehydrated without knowing it. According to medical doctors, 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated.5 This may be due to drinking beverages that are diuretic rather than hydrating. Alcohol and coffee are examples of beverages that cause the body to flush out water.

No matter the cause, there are ways to prevent dehydration or recover from mild cases in the comfort of our own homes. Here are some home remedies with high water content and nutritive values:6

Bananas contain 70-79% water and are high in water and potassium content. They can help to replenish potassium levels in the body as well as help prevent dehydration.

• Barley Water is. a popular beverage in hot climates not only because it helps to fight heat stroke and in maintaining the fluid and electrolyte balance in the body. Barley grains contain antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals such as potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus, which helps to restore minerals and water that are lost when dehydrated.

• Buttermilk is one of the widely used home remedies for dehydration, since it is high in water content and packed with nutrients like magnesium. It acts as a natural probiotic which aids in dealing with diarrhea and indigestion, which could be the reason for dehydration.

• Lemon water acts as one of the best home remedies for dehydration as it not only ups your water intake and helps you to stay hydrated but also prevents dehydration. When you add a bit of salt and sugar to lemon water, it helps replenish the lost salts in the body as well as to increase vitamin and mineral levels to restore your fluid and electrolyte balance.

• Orange juice contains Vitamin C, which flushes the toxins from the body. High in water content, it also contains electrolytes such as sodium and potassium to help replenish the nutrient levels in the body. The natural sugar in orange juice provides an instant energy boost to help deal with dehydration.

• Rice water is one of the conventional health drinks used popularly throughout Asia to fight summer heat, heat stroke, diarrhea, and dehydration. Rice is loaded with B-complex vitamins which can help deal with nutrient loss. As rice water contains salt, it also provides minerals such as chloride and sodium, helping to restore the lost nutrients in the body.

• Coconut water is loaded with potassium, calcium, and amino acids. It is naturally rich in electrolytes, which helps ward off fatigue and raises energy levels. It’s a healthy alternative to sports drinks that are high in added sugars. Many athletes consume this beverage before and after training. Sipping organic coconut water throughout the day is a pleasant way to remain hydrated or to recover from dehydration.

Tap into the Power of Hydration with Nikken the entire month of March! We are offering four Water Packs, each with two state-of-the-art PiMag® products. You get one at the regular price and the second at 50% off! You have your choice of two PiMag MicroJet® Wall Mount Shower Systems or two PiMag MicroJet® Handheld Shower Systems, both of which help neutralize chemicals, two PiMag® Sport Bottles of 100% recyclable biogreen materials, or two PiMag® Waterfalls that can help reduce bacteria by 99.99%.

1, 2, 3, 4  https://www.europeanhydrationinstitute.org/consequences_of_dehydration/

5 https://www.medicaldaily.com/75-americans-may-suffer-chronic-dehydration-according-doctors-247393

6 https://www.1mg.com/articles/top-7-home-remedies-for-dehydration

Make Every Day an Earth Day

Earth Day was first held on April 22, 1970 to demonstrate support for environmental protection. It now includes a wide range of events coordinated globally by Earthday.org and more than a billion people from 193 countries1 participate in some way.

Many important environmental events have happened on Earth Day since 1970, but now more than ever, the entire Global Wellness Community needs to collectively recognize the importance of ecology, conservation and restoration. This includes awareness of climate change, plastic and pollution, access to clean drinking water, preservation of wildlife and reconnecting with nature. As a community, we need to be active participants who live on planet Earth, not as humans who regard ourselves as above the rest of the animal kingdom, but as cohorts to wildlife.

Earth Day continues to be a momentous and unifying day each and every year. More importantly, it’s up to each of us to make every day, Earth Day. Paying attention to how we can live in harmony with all things natural on our planet cannot be only one day out of the year. We have to create an Active Wellness lifestyle that helps to restore the Earth. This does not mean we have to disrupt our daily lives in extreme ways. Each individual can help by incorporating small habits that are beneficial to nature.

Here are just a few examples of ways to help the Earth by going a little greener:

•            Drink filtered water rather than water from single-use plastic bottles. Eco-friendly PiMag® Sport Bottle and PiMag Waterfall® are ideally suited to help avoid plastic bottle usage. And, you get clean water with 99.99% of bacteria filtered out!

•            Use washable containers for leftover food instead of plastic wrap.

•            Use cold water for laundry whenever possible. According to Energy Star, up to 90% of energy used in washing machines goes toward heating the water.2

•             Re-use cloth rags for cleaning when possible. This will reduce the amount of paper towels you use. When you do use paper towels, please recycle them.

•             Bring your own mug when you go to get a cup of coffee from your favorite retailer.

•            Bring your own re-usable bags when you go grocery shopping. Many supermarkets provide re-usable bags for purchase. Try to stay away from plastic bags that will end up in mountains of landfill.

•            Animal agriculture is one of the biggest contributors to climate change.3 Even eating plant-based meals a few times a week can help make a difference. Best of all, it may also improve your health!

•            When your local community holds a beach cleanup or similar event, volunteer! It’s a great way to meet like-minded people.

Check earthday.org for ways to participate and to learn more about how to go green.

1 wikipedia.com

2 parade.com/picks, April 18, 2021

3 https://www.earthday.org/our-work/#people-and-communities

Water is Life: Our Lives Depend On It!

During times of drought in California, we are asked to ration our water usage. During drastic periods of dryness, we have been asked to use water on certain days of the week, depending on the random numbers in our addresses: odd numbers have access on certain days and even numbers on the others.

Not everyone is old enough to have lived through these dry periods, but imagine if limited access to water is part of daily living, 24/7. The reality is that 1.1 billion people worldwide lack access to water and a total of 2.7 billion find water scarce for at least one month of the year.1

Water usage has been growing globally at more than twice the rate of population increase in the last century, and an increasing number of regions are reaching the limit at which water services can be sustainably delivered.2 Even though water covers 70% of our planet, freshwater, which is what we drink, bathe in, and irrigate our farm fields with, is incredibly rare. Only 3% of the world’s water is freshwater and two thirds of that is tucked away in glaciers or otherwise unavailable for our use.3

Access to potable water is not limited to so-called third world nations. Our ecosystems have become more stressed and grossly polluted. And, climate change and weather patterns impact the world, resulting in water shortages, droughts and floods. Glaciers and snow packs are disappearing in some areas, affecting freshwater supplies to those downstream communities, making water scarce for agriculture, energy generation and ecosystems around the world.

Untreated wastewater, industrial waste, plastics, pesticides and fertilizers all add to the problem of water pollution. The World Wildlife Organization projects that by 2025, two thirds of the world’s population may face water shortages and ecosystems around the world will suffer even more.4

Each of us needs to not take water for granted. Water has to be treated as a scarce resource, with a far stronger focus on managing demand. Water is life and our lives depend on it.

There’s less than a week left to take advantage of the Nikken March promotion that not only helps you practice Active Wellness, but also helps you promote water awareness and help reduce plastic waste. For the entire month of March, we are offering four Water Packs. Each pack has two state-of-the-art PiMag® products. You get one at the regular price and the second at 50% off! You have your choice of two PiMag MicroJet® Wall Mount Shower Systems or two PiMag MicroJet® Handheld Shower Systems, both of which help neutralize chemicals, two PiMag® Sport Bottles of 100% recyclable biogreen materials, or two PiMag® Waterfalls that can help reduce bacteria by 99.99%.

1, 3, 4 www.worldwildlife.org/threats/water-scarcity

2 www.unwater.org

Take Action on World Water Day and Every Day

World Water Day is celebrated globally once a year to consciously recognize the importance of providing affordable, lasting access to safe water. It became a United Nations observance day in 1993 to focus attention on the global water crisis.

On 22 March every year, people and organizations mark World Water Day by taking action to tackle the water crisis. World Water Day 2021 will focus on the theme, ‘Valuing Water’. This focus will extend beyond issues of pricing to include the environmental, social, and cultural value people place on water.1

The value of water is about much more than its price—water has enormous and complex value for our households, food, culture, health, education, economics and the integrity of our natural environment. If we overlook any of these values, we risk mismanaging this finite, irreplaceable resource.2

Currently, 844 million people on our planet lack access to safe, clean drinking water and over 200 million are walking an average of four miles or six kilometers per day to gather water.3 That’s why one of the ways people take action is to “walk for water,” with corporate or personal sponsorships for every mile logged—gathering donations to help those with limited access to water.

People die every year from diseases caused by unsafe drinking water, lack of sanitation and insufficient water for hygienic use. When a million miles are logged by people who participate in ‘”walk for water,” an estimated 100,000 families are provided with clean water.4 This is a great example of what valuing water actually means to people as well as the true value of water and how we can better protect this vital resource.

A core focus of World Water Day is to support the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG 6): water and sanitation for all by 2030. To achieve SDG 6, on the governmental levels, countries need to invest in adequate infrastructure, provide sanitation facilities and encourage hygiene. Protecting and restoring water-related ecosystems is essential.5

Although conservation on a grand scale may require legislation, it is something we can practice individually on a daily basis by being conscious of our water usage, not taking water for granted and participating in community events that support access to clean water and help sustain a cleaner environment. Human survival depends on all of us working with nature, not against it.

Water is Life and Nikken is doing its part to help people access clean water for Active Wellness—not only for drinking, but also for bathing. For the entire month of March, we are offering four Water Packs. Each pack has two state-of-the-art PiMag® products. You get one at the regular price and the second at 50% off! You have your choice of two PiMag MicroJet® Wall Mount Shower Systems or two PiMag MicroJet® Handheld Shower Systems, both of which help neutralize chemicals, two PiMag® Sport Bottles of 100% recyclable biogreen materials, or two PiMag® Waterfalls that can help reduce bacteria by 99.99%.

1 http://sdg.iisd.org/events/world-water-day-2021/

2  https://www.worldwaterday.org/

3, 4  https://worldwidewalkforwater.com/

5 http://www.undp.org

What Can We Do To Decrease Plastic Pollution?

There are many misconceptions about the plastic pollution problem, but there is no question that in its many forms, plastic is killing ocean wildlife that is vital to the ecosystem. In addition, plastic pollution is sickening land flora and fauna, including humans.

Miranda Wang and Jeanny Yao were two of the youngest scientists ever to win the Perlman science prize in 2016 for developing a bacterium that may transform plastic into CO2 and water. Although they were not the first ones to discover that bacteria can break down phthalates, they were the first to find a possible solution to a local problem by looking into their own river system in Vancouver, Canada when they were still in high school.1

The two have since won numerous other science awards and established their company, BioCellection. Years of research later, their company is still focused on taking a main type of plastic, polyethylene, and turning it into chemical building blocks for new products that don’t end up in oceans as waste. The firm takes dicarboxylic acid it generates from polyethylene and transforms it into high-performance materials, such as photopolymers or polyyrethane.2

 “It is such a waste when materials that are perfectly good to be reused or repurposed end up as pollution,” Yao says. “Not only are we turning this currently wasted carbon into new materials that are high performing, but BioCellection is also making new products that can be recycled over and over again.”3

Since 2016, a product called the SeaBin has been available for purchase around the world. Created by two Australian surfers, the SeaBin is a bucket with a pump and water filtration system that is designed to suck in any floating trash into a removable mesh bag. The bucket includes an optional oil-water separator system that will pull oil right out of the ocean, then spit out cleaner water through the other side of the pump. The SeaBin can be installed at any floating dock to suck up trash or oil floating in nearby harbors.4

Since 2017, the SeaBin Project has removed over 1,400 tons of plastic pollution from the world’s oceans with SeaBin units in 53 countries. Each unit has the capability to collect 90,000 plastic bags, 35,700 disposable cups, 16,500 plastic bottles and 166,500 plastic utensils each year.5

Removal of plastic from the ocean is only one piece of the pollution puzzle. What happens to all the plastic that is collected? Not all of tons and tons of plastic can be transformed into usable products in the way of BioCellection. Much of the plastic waste has to decompose. Just as plastic was a wonderful invention due to its durability, it’s also a nightmare when it comes to decomposition, as it can take 1,000 years!

Leave it to yet another Canadian high school student to find a way to more quickly biodegrade plastic! Daniel Burd, a student at Waterloo Collegiate Institute won the Canada-Wide Science Fair in May of 2019. He created a process of immersing ground plastic in a yeast solution that expedites microbial growth, then isolating the productive organisms. After experimentation with different strains and interbreeding them, Burd achieved a 43% degradation of plastic in only six weeks!6

What makes Burd’s discoveries so exciting is that his method of decomposing plastic is organic. Other research on decomposing plastic have mainly focused on chemical additives made by scientists to cause plastic to vaporize.7 Testing needs to continue with Burd’s discoveries to ensure that byproducts of organic decomposition are not carcinogenic, but what a great starting point!

We can’t all be scientific entrepreneurs and make breakthrough discoveries, but every single one of us can help in decreasing plastic pollution by remembering to practice the 3Rs: reuse, reduce and recycle.

Water is Life and Nikken is doing its part to help people access clean water for Active Wellness—not only for drinking, but also for bathing. For the entire month of March, we are offering four Water Packs. Each pack has two state-of-the-art PiMag® products. You get one at the regular price and the second at 50% off! You have your choice of two PiMag MicroJet® Wall Mount Shower Systems, two PiMag MicroJet® Handheld Shower Systems, two PiMag® Sport Bottles of 100% recyclable biogreen materials, or two PiMag® Waterfalls.

1 https://www.thescienceandspace.com/2019/05/the-high-pollution-in-the-oceans-is-big.html?

2 www.intellingentliving.co/amp/students-recycle-polyethylene

3 https://cen.acs.org/environment/recylcing/BioCellection-Miranda-Wang-and-Jeanny-Yao-aim-to-make-treasure-out-of-plastic-trash/98/19

4 https://mitte.co/2018/02/13/water-related-technologies-inventions-inspire-us/

5 https://seabinproject.com/discovery-australia-joins-seabin-project-to-help-clean-up-sydney-harboru-in-world-first-program/

6,7 https://www.treehugger.com/boy-discovers-microbe-that-easts-plastic-4868136

Keep Your Water and Air Clean with Filtration

Clean air and potable water are crucial for Active Wellness. Depending on where we live, clean air and potable water can be valuable commodities rather than the norm. Even where outside air is relatively breathable and water is potable out of faucets, we all run the risk of breathing indoor air that is polluted with chemical odors, dust and dander or ingesting microscopic plastics, pathogens and a wide range of bacteria from water that is considered drinkable. This is why it’s so important to use water and air filtration units.

Nikken offers high-quality HEPA air filtration with the KenkoAir Purifier®. It’s portable and exceptionally quiet. The KenkoAir Purifier® exceeds the measured efficiency of capturing up to 99.97% of 0.3 micron particles in the air. It’s Energy Star qualified, which means it’s 35% more efficient than standard models and saves a minimum of 215 kilowatt-hours per year. Unlike typical air filters, this advanced system helps generate negative-ions similar to those found in natural environments. In addition to replaceable filters, its pre-filter is re-usable to further reduce its carbon footprint.

The state-of-the-art PiMag® Waterfall and the portable eco-bottle known as the PiMag® Sport Bottle provide unparalleled water filtration and alkalization.

•The PiMag Waterfall is designed to produce water with added minerals, in a pH range of 8.5-9.5. Ionized water decreases oxidation-reduction potential. A high ORP contributes to unwanted oxidative decomposition. Ionized PiMag water from the Waterfall can help offset the oxidizing effect of many elements of the modern diet and environment. This can actually help slow down cellular destruction.

•The PiMag Sport Bottle is the only water bottle that combines three technologies: nano-fiber filtration, alkalization and declustering. The patented nano-fiber filtration technology was originally developed for NASA and dramatically increases the filter’s ability to reduce potential contaminants from drinking water, now including pathogens and micro-plastics. The patented filter with alkalizing media increases the pH from 7 to 8.5, representing a 15 to 25 fold increase in pH value, going from an acidic to an alkaline range. 

You can even benefit when you shower, if you use the PiMag MicroJet®. It uses a reduction/oxidation process to neutralize chlorine ions and injects air into the shower stream to increase the electronegative potential of the water for more effective filtration. This shower filtration system has been tested according to NSF/ANSI 177 for reduction of free chlorine.

A great way to start a new year is by committing to Active Wellness. A great way is to take advantage of the Nikken replacement filter sale!   This year, the Nikken Replacement Filter Sale is effective January 15 through February 28, 2021. Save 20% off select filter replacements, and there’s no limit to how many you can purchase.