Thursday, December 22, 2016

Lots To Live For, Inc. is Dedicated to Delivering Comfort During Cancer

Lots To Live For, Inc. is a curated collection of cancer resources dedicated to delivering comfort to individuals who are battling the unpleasant and uncomfortable side effects of chemotherapy and radiation.

The Daily Voice recently wrote an article describing the inspiration for the launch of Lots To Live For, Inc. and the most popular products sold on the website.

Lots to Live For was created by Margot Malin as a loving tribute to her mother and grandmother, who both fought cancer so bravely. As a firsthand witness to the debilitating effects that their treatments took on her relatives, Margot saw the need for personal care products that would comfort cancer patients during a difficult time.

"Malin's dream was to create a one-stop shopping site for products that would reduce and relieve the side effects of chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery."

 “Since 2000, there have been so many products introduced to help cancer patients,” Malin said. “A lot of them have been created by individuals who have gone through treatment.”

Products sold reduce and relieve side effects in a variety of categories including: skin care, radiation burn care, oral care, hair care and nutrition. There are also many curated thoughtful gifts which are both thoughtful and useful, and certainly welcomed by the recipients.

To read the full article in the Daily Voice: click here.  
Upper Saddle River Woman Sells Products That Comfort Cancer Patients

To shop for products on the Lots To Live For website: click here.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Underarm Care for Cancer Patients - Read Ingredient Labels

This blog post is an abbreviated version of the post: 
Nurture Your Armpits – Especially When You Are Undergoing Cancer Treatment
which appeared on the Breast Cancer Yoga Blog in March 2016

What you put on your body matters – especially when you are undergoing cancer treatment. Oncology patients often have unique needs when it comes to personal care products for the skin, hair and body. Many people don’t read the labels on personal care products, and even if they do, they are hard to decipher because many items on the ingredient list have unrecognizable chemical names. While general skin care is an important topic, this article focuses specifically on underarm care.

Unhealthy Ingredients in Mass Market Deodorants
What you put on your skin matters. Your skin is your body’s largest organ. It absorbs the materials that you put on it, they circulate inside your body, and can reach internal organs. For more information refer to the Environmental Working Group (EWG) and WebMD. The following disturbing chemicals are frequently found in mass market deodorants and being aware of the contents may influence your decision about the deodorant you use and encourage you to read ingredient labels:
  • Aluminum 
  • Phtalates 
  • Propylene glycol 
  • Formaldehyde
  • Parabens
According to a 2012 Huffington Post article: “What we put on our skin is just as important as what we put in our body; both affect the well-being of our entire body (skin included!). The next time you slather on that chemical laden lotion or soak in a toxic tub, remember that your skin absorbs a large percentage of what you put on it.”

Memorial Sloan Kettering mentions underarm care in their Patient and Caregiver information: "Radiation Therapy to the Breast or Chest Wall" as follows:
"You can use nonaluminum-based deodorant on intact skin in the area being treated. Stop using it if your skin becomes irritated."

PiperWai: A Healthy Solution to Underarm Care

PiperWai became a popular brand soon after the founders appeared on Shark Tank in late 2015. PiperWai all natural deodorant is the first creme deodorant that contains super-absorbent activated charcoal to keep you dry. PiperWai rubs in clear and won’t discolor your clothes. PiperWai is applied with your fingers – this deodorant’s skin-conditioning qualities also make it great for your hands. Of utmost importance for cancer patients - PiperWai is made with only healthy ingredients. No Parabens, No harsh ingredients. And, especially important for individuals undergoing radiation therapy to the breast or other areas of the body: NO ALUMINUM

PiperWai Is Gentle On Sensitive Skin

Crafted with skin-conditioning ingredients like organic coconut oil, shea butter, cocoa butter, and pure vitamin E oil, PiperWai is great for people with sensitive skin. It’s perfect for individuals with chemical sensitivities, or skin conditions like psoriasis or eczema. PiperWai contains a proprietary blend of 11 therapeutic-grade essential oils gives PiperWai its signature gender-neutral fresh scent. And, in addition to smelling great, these essential oils are believed to have specific anti-microbial properties that work with the other ingredients to keep you smelling fresh.  Try PiperWai today - your armpits and your body will thank you!

Alra Non-Metallic Deodorant

Alra Non-Metallic Deodorant was developed at the request of oncologists, as metallic ingredients can interfere with radiation therapy treatments and is another option for safe armpit care during cancer. It is made with Aloe Vera Gel, Oil of Cypress and Lichen Extract (a natural bactericide and fungicide)

Read Ingredient Labels On All Personal Care Products

Its not just deodorant that patients have to be careful about. Remember to read ingredient labels on all personal care products. Many skin-care products on the market contain ingredients that can be carcinogenic, estrogenic, or teratogenic, with the potential for long-term neurological disorders and conditions. The use of Endocrine-disrupting xenoestrogenic chemicals, such as parabens, phthalates, bisphenol A (BPA), BHT, and BHA are commonly found in everyday personal care products such as cosmetics, shampoo, lotions, sunscreens, hand washing soaps, lining of canned foods, and flame retardant clothing such as children’s pajama’s, to name a few. Avoid the pretty outer packaging, and the possibly misleading catchy phrases in the advertising for most mass market personal care products. Instead Be Proactive: Read the labels, Learn the ingredients and Protect your health!

This blog post was written by: Margot Main, Founder and CEO of Lots To Live For, Inc.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Relief: Comfort Slings Help Relieve Abrasions and Dermatitis Beneath The Breast

by Margot Malin, CEO and Founder of Lots To Live For, Inc.

Patients who are undergoing radiation therapy on the underside of their breasts may develop radiation dermatitis, painful sores, and even weepy lesions in the skin folds beneath their breasts. The inflammation can be worsened by excessive perspiration and the chafing resulting from skin-to-skin contact. Once these side effects occur the patient experiences significant discomfort.

Relief: A new product called the ComfortSling(R) can help to improve comfort and prevent the continuing abrasion or fold over effect. The Breast Comfort Sling allows the breast to rest on a soft cushion giving freer air circulation while wicking away perspiration to keep the sore area dry. The straps are adjustable so there is no pressure on the neck or shoulder, or on the sore areas beneath the breast. The cushion provides a comfort barrier between the breast and the skin beneath it to prevent excessive chafing, and the antimicrobial material discourages bacteria growth.

The Slings are available in either a single sling, or a double sling.
The Single Sling: Women have found that wearing the Breast Comfort Single Sling from the onset of radiotherapy, even before any side effects have begun to appear, is the most effective way to minimize uncomfortable side effects to the skin. Wearing the sling as many hours as possible throughout the day, especially when sleeping, is most effective.
The Double SlingWomen with large breasts often suffer yeast infections, skin rashes, fungus and other irritations due to excessive perspiration and poor circulation under their breasts. The moisture irritates the skin and the area becomes further inflamed as the breast tends to rub against the skin beneath it. The ComfortSling® Double-Sling is an ideal solution.

The fabric for the Breast ComfortSlings and Pads was specially selected because it is very soft and has both wicking and antimicrobial qualities. The straps are soft enough to be comfortable yet firm enough to hold their shape when worn across the shoulders. The slings stay in place, yet they are loose enough to avoid pressure and constriction across the neck and under the breast.

Breast ComfortSlings and Pads were developed by Elizabeth Silver during her radiation oncology treatment and they proved so effective that her radiologist and oncologist were amazed at the excellent condition of her skin during her treatment. In fact, it was they who recommended that she begin to market the slings so that more women could benefit from the relief they provided.

Patients have found amazing relief from using the products, as described in these reviews: 

Life Saver!! 5 Star Review

Posted on May 12th 2016
My cousin was in her 20th treatment of radiation and we started noticing that the crease under her left breast was raw and peeling to the point of extreme pain. I was desperately searching for some type of treatment that would help and I did. This breast sling is the best . It allowed her breast to heel so much faster. If anyone is going to be starting radiation, please, please get this before starting treatment! It will help sooooo much! 

Posted on May 31, 2016
Using the breast comfort sling and the pads, combined with clotrimazole (an antifungal cream found in lortimin AF athletes foot cream), I have managed to heal a 1/2 dollar sized very painful and itchy irritation under my breast. It has been there for months and within 5 days of using the pads and cream it has greatly reduced and virtually healed.

This post is a condensed version of  Comfort Slings Help Relieve Soreness and Abrasion Beneath the Breasts published on the Breast Cancer Yoga Blog in December 2015.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Recording Gratitude as a Daily Ritual to Improve Happiness

by Margot Malin, Founder of Lots To Live For, Inc.

What makes you thankful?

Focus on what you have - not what you don't - by identifying and noting at least one positive thing in your life each day.

Cultivating gratitude by recording the things we are grateful for can help enhance our health, mood and spirit.

One way to cultivate gratitude is by keeping a Gratitude Journal or using a Gratitude Note Pad. Simply record one to three things that you are grateful for every day. Avoid fixating on material items and do not dwell on things that you do not have. Spiritually refocus on what you do have.

This Gratitude Note Pad (sold by Lots To Live For, Inc.) is easily carried in a purse or portfolio, and can be taken with you to chemotherapy infusions. It is a great addition to a chemo goody bag, or chemo gift kit.

Studies have shown that the simple act of writing down the things that we are thankful for can help improve our outlook leading to a sense of calm, well-being, and increased happiness.

In 2003 Dr. Emmons and Dr. McCullough reported the results of an important study on gratitude and well-being which separated individuals randomly into four groups who were asked to carry out different tasks. The results of the study found that those participants randomly assigned to the group who were instructed to write about things they were grateful for on a daily basis became the happiest and most optimistic when compared to 3 other groups performing different tasks. Other studies have shown that additional benefits of practicing gratitude can include improved mental and physical health, enhanced relationships, higher self-esteem, and overall satisfaction with life.

Other methods of cultivating gratitude include: meditating, mindful breathing, practicing yoga mindfully, showing appreciation, writing and expressing thanks to individuals in your life, praying (if religious), or repeating an affirmation.

Recording gratitude as a daily ritual can help improve your happiness. By extension, it can also help to improve your perspective on life, and positively impact your health.

This is a shortened version of a longer post originally appearing on the Breast Cancer Yoga Blog:
Practicing Yoga Can Imporve Your Health, Mood and Spirit

Also read: Sansone RA, et al. "Gratitude and Well Being: The Benefits of Appreciation" Psychiatry (Nov. 2010): Vol.7, No. 11, pp. 18 -22.