Cure for peanut allergy

News this week is that the doctors at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, have discovered a cure for peanut allergy.

Hopefully, researchers think it could work for other allergies such as egg and dairy too.

1 in 50 children in Britain have a peanut allergy and about seven children die each year from a dangerous reaction. But when 23 children were tested by giving them daily doses of peanut flour in their foods over a fixed period all but two were cured.

It goes without saying that nobody should attempt this by themselves outside of a medical environment – previous similar attempts to cure children this way had failed. However it is hoped that significant advances in providing this cure will be made in the next three years.

It’s a fair trade – swap your purchase for a more ethical one

You probably know already that it’s Fairtrade Fortnight.

The Fairtrade Foundation are encouraging every household to swap just one of their everday buys for a Fairtrade version.

It’s so easy to get in on the action…

Fairtrade Farmers for a fair wage
Fairtrade Farmers for a fair wage

Choose to buy Fairtrade Coffee, Tea, Chocolate, Pasta, Jam, Bananas, Honey, Peanut Butter, Sugar, Biscuits, Snackbars, Oil, Fruitjuice, even Ricecakes or many other Fairtrade products in place of the type you’d normally buy.

Taste the difference, revel in the justice and hopefully, you won’t even want to swap back.

Then you can register your swaps online at the Fairtrade website.

Remember Fairtrade isn’t about charity, it provides the world’s poorer farmers with a fair wage for the food they put on our tables. So take a look at our Fairtrade Section and see if there’s something you could put on your table with pride.

Shea butter – “woman’s gold” when it comes to skin

Have you heard of Shea Butter? A skin cream so good and so nutritious it is being used in chocolate and patisseries.

What is more Shea Butter is highly regarded for its ability to heal.

It comes from a tree known locally as ‘woman’s gold’, and grows as a nut on trees from the savannah belt of West Africa, from Senegal in the west to Sudan in the east. Indeed it really is woman’s gold because its recent popularity has transformed the lives of women, allowing them to set up businesses and look after their children.

Here’s the science bit…

Shea- butter - very healing
Shea- butter - very healing

The moisturising properties in Shea Butter are the same as the moisturisers produced by the Sebaceous glands in the skin. That makes it a superb moisturiser which melts at body temperature and absorbs quickly into the skin without leaving a greasy feeling (I know this because I just tried it).

Because the cream is exceptionally high in its unsaponifiable quality (unrefined Shea butter is up to 17% unsaponifiable, most natural oils are less than 1%) it is believed that Shea butter has a high potency in important nutrients, vitamins, and other valuable phytonutrients required for healing, particularly vitamins A and E.

The natural cream has been noted to improve a number of skin conditions including blemishes, itching, eczema, psoriasis, lichen sclerosis and other forms of dermatitis. Additionally Shea Butter is used for insect bites, frost bite, small skin wounds and sunburn.

Pregnant mothers are also enjoying using the cream on their bellies to prevent stretch marks. The list of benefits could go on (so I’ve included a bigger list below).

We’ve found a Shea Butter which is organic and hasn’t been tested on animals. It comes combined with grapefruit, tea tree, lemongrass or lavender – all bearing a wonderfully fresh aroma.

This traditional balm is reaping dividends for both its users and producers. As one report noted, “For years, we have used it for everything. It cures our ills and fills our bellies. Now it is filling our pockets.”

Shea Butter is used for: Dry skin, fading scars, eczema, burns, rashes, acne, blemishes, dark spots, skin discolourations, chapped lips, stretch marks, wrinkles, soothing, daily face and body moisturiser, nappy rash, stings, minor burns (including sunburn), cracked skin, dermatitis, arthritis, athlete’s foot, after shave balm, scalp irritation, lip balm, massages, blisters, sun cream (up to SPF6).

Water – how pure do you want to be?

Filtered water
Filtered water

If you’re one of those people who manages to drink 2 litres of water a day then I’m jealous.

My attempt to keep a bottle of water at my desk always fails a few days into the mission. Guilt feelings about how bad my liver’s going to be in old age don’t have much impact either. Buying bottled water would probably help but let’s face it, it’s bad for the environment and my friends just laugh at the poncyness of it all (yes, I’m male), plus they’ve got a point, tap water’s cheaper and may well be just as clean.

The one thing which does work is keeping a jug of tap water in the fridge. I like that cool clean feel to the water – it makes me feel (almost) pure.

However, if you live in an area where the water is hard (ie. very mineral tasting and it furs up your kettle) then you may not like the taste.

Devotees of tea and coffee will promise that purer water produces a higher quality beverage and I’ve heard that steaming food with pure water increases the nutritional value of the food further.

So it’s worth investing in a water filter if you are interested in enjoying a clean natural taste. I’ve been looking at some Brita water jugs which reduce limescale and chlorine and removes lead and copper from the water.

I won’t scare you with a list of the chemicals which you can find in tap water. The amount is too small to have any impact on your health, though scientists still query the long term effect on your body. In fact UK tap water is said to be among the cleanest in the world. But, if you’re pregnant or elderly, there are some reports about the possible detriment of drinking water straight from the tap, research has linked tap water to birth defects and alzheimers.

NB. Always make sure you have enough minerals in your diet (the main source is from food), they help decrease the chance of heart disease when you’re older – but don’t worry about me. I’m going to have enough trouble looking after my liver.

100% organic cotton is the most delicate feminine hygiene

If you get irritated with your brand of sanitary protection you are not alone. Hundreds of women react with irritation and inflammation when using chemically bleached or synthetic sanitary products. The problem has been so acute that now gynaecologists in Italy actually prescribe cotton sanitary ware for any women who experience an irritation or inflammation caused by their towels or tampons.

You know the problem, sore and itchy, hot and inflamed. This is easily solved by selecting 100% cotton products. In fact these symptoms can be eradicated in 90% of cases by switching to a cotton product. Organyc Care, with this in mind, have launched a comprehensive range of feminine hygiene products. They are made with the gentlest 100% organic cotton, they are biodegradable and compostable, hypo-allergenic and lovely to use. Neither have they been tested on animals! The range includes towels, panty liners and tampons of all strengths and sizes.

See the Organyc Care sanitary range at GoodnessDirect

Constipation? Rye bread may help you go

Rye bread and lactobacilli have both recently been looked upon as favourable alternatives to laxatives. Both rye bread and the lactobacilli modify the colonic environment and have the potential to relieve constipation according to research from the University of Helsinki.  As they are both safe and convenient and much cheaper than laxatives it is welcome news.

Chronic constipation affects up to 27% of the population of Western countries. Symptoms of constipation, such as infrequent bowel movements, hard stools, straining, cramps, abdominal bloating, flatulence, and sometimes severe abdominal pain, may affect patients’ overall quality of life. Slow colonic transit has also been connected to the development of colon cancer. In the Helsinki study, the effects of rye bread and cultured buttermilk with Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG (LGG) on bowel function and colonic metabolism were investigated and compared with laxatives in 51 constipated adults.

The conclusions of the very detailed and well controlled tests was that bowel function was significantly improved by rye bread consumption. Rye bread consumption increased the number of bowel movements compared with wheat bread after 3 weeks of the trial. The lactobacillus was not quite so effecive as the Rye bread, but the two together had good results too.

The result that constipation is alleviated by rye bread consumption is supported by the results of previous investigations too. In other trials rye bread had positive effects on bowel function in healthy as well as in constipated adults. It is thought that it is the fibre in the rye bread that makes all the difference.  This may sound obvious to us but now it has been proved, that rye bread relieves mild constipation and improves colonic metabolism compared with white wheat bread and commonly used laxatives without increasing gastrointestinal adverse effects. (Holma et al. Journal of Nutrition, online 20/01/10; doi: 10.3945/jn.109.11857). No surprise there then 🙂

Buy rye bread now.

Customer comments and feedback

Thanks for all the compliments we get about our products and our service, we are overwhelmed!

I always get a good service. You save me a heck of a lot of driving. My nearest supermarket is 25 miles away, so you are a godsend. J Holden

GoodnessDirect, I am soooo pleased I have found a company that can supply loads of different vegan stuff for my very strict daughter. Her sister and I are trying very hard to be vegan and the food we can buy with your company has made it very easy. LOVE IT!!  J Marshall.

My order got here safe and well ………..   ah the joys of GoodnessDirect. Fresh food and reliable.

I was going to drop you an email anyway to say a big thank you as always  for such great service.  It's good every time but I'm always staggered by how good. 

The organic veg box was really amazing I'm spoilt for choice. I had  fresh roasted aubergine with melted vegan cheese and cracked black pepper for dinner.  I love being vegan, its one of the best choices I ever made but as i was unpacking my stuff today i pondered on how much harder it would be to be a vegan if you folks weren't there with your super speedy goodies. 

as always a big hand a huge thank you for the really great service you provide. If I can ever track down an industry award for best  provider of   mail order vegan food id be really happy to nominate you . 

thanks again.  Elle

From the outset, I  felt that I was dealing with real people, who think the way I do
about food and our place in the wider scheme of things. This was borne out by the level of
service and the personal response to my getting in touch later. M Barbour

Really pleased to find a company who have got it right, start to finish!  Well done! S Stamford.

I love your website and newsletters, and think that you stock a fabulous range. It was a godsend to me when I broke my ankle and could not get out. The wheatgrass kits are amazing. They just keep on going way beyond first cutting, and I will never be without them now. M Gudmundsson

A *more* than perfect shopping experience – as always! Thanks!!!  S Bright

Excellent as always. Brilliant customer service., super quick delivery plus superb products equals an unbeatable company to deal with 🙂 N Quinn

Our first experience of shopping with you was a joy – the site was easy to use and delivery was super-fast . We will definitely be shopping with you again. Best wishes Jenny and Kevin.

I think this is a great site.  It has just the products I want and at the quality I want.  Seervice is second to none.  Well done and keep up the excellent work.  Oh and thank you very much  –  Viccy Hall

Excellent – the only online delivery service I have found that gives me stuff I would choose
for myself rather than tired fruit. J Simpson

Great web site. Recommended by my nutritionist. L Lazaro-Keen.

Order was received in excellent condition , and arrived within forty eight hours, which is excellent for orders to the channel islands.
I can always rely on excellent service from Goodness Direct. Many thanks. F Ferguson

The service you provide is absolutely fantastic – to offer selection of delivery day is particularly brilliant. J Braithwaite

I didn’t have fresh product, but my merchandise arrived in very good condition and well packaged.  Your site was very user friendly.  I found exactly what I wanted at a very good price.  I will visit site again soon for further offers.  L Clark

You’re one of only a handful of places I can get barley flour! K Humphries

I was extremely pleased with the speed with which my order was processed and arrived. The website was really friendly and easy to use – not at all frustrating! Thank you. J Barber
You seem to need to know the brand names to find some things on your site. Better cross referencing might be helpful? Great service though, and fabulous choice! thanks! L Husband

Dark chocolate covered raisins in smaller quantities, please!
You guys are still the best!  A Vine

First order, as we can no longer fine items in local health shops. Excellent service, will definitely shop again. B Roberts

I used to buy Blue Dragon silken tofu in my local Asda, but it was discontinued about a year ago. I tried to find another supplier at the time but couldn’t. On this occasion, I found a few websites that supplied it but I felt yours was the best. I have been extremely impressed with the whole ordering experience – you seem to have everything covered and I will definitely continue to buy this product from you. The only negative I can find is that you don’t have an excellent option on your feedback form! S Common

Found your service excellent and really helpful for someone needing to change their eating pattern seriously. S Gardiner

Very impressed with the speedy delivery. Also, the order was well packed and the food first class. 10 out of 10 on all counts. R Webster.

Items that fall into more than one category sometimes take time to find, eg potato starch flour. Also, the gluten-free section included lots of items possibly with gluten traces, so I had to check the details of every one. It would be helpful if categorisation was clearer and more watertight. J Hickman

Excellent service. Many organisations heavily underestimate the importance of postage and packing free. It so obviously defines whether you place a small order or not. Our family have always been of the opinion that say 5% added to the cost of all goods but never charging p and p would invite many more small /medium orders. D Harris

My order arrived the day after it was placed – a really excellent and efficient service. The goods were very well packed. Thank you, Thelma

My wife is a coeliac. Your service was superb. Could not be better. We’ll be back!. Thanks. M Rainey

A most satisfactory order outcome, my continued custom is guaranteed, many thanks. S Scott.

I didn’t buy these things for me, but for my mum, who’s a vegan. so as these sites are not my natural habitat it’s really helpful to find a site like yours, which is clear, easy to use and hassle-free. Thanks very much. A Schenkl

Your service was better than some of the bigger well-known websites – thank you very much for goods delivered on time and in good condition! R Martin.

One of the easiest eco-shopping sites I’ve used – very good. A Outram
Dear Sir/Madam,
This is just a note to say thank you so much, my order arrived safely today. The speed and efficiency of the service you provide is exemplary. Considering the seasonal goods I ordered, and how close to the required date we are now, every effort has been made to get my order to me before Easter. The is my first dealing with you and because of this occasion I will be a returning customer from now on. You should be very proud of yourselves. You have an excellent company and brilliant staff.
Yours Faithfully C Aldridge

I’m really happy with the service and products, would definitely recommend to others and will be using you again. Thanx. Y Fayyaz

Dear Goodness Direct,

Just received my delivery-its’ the first time I have ordered vegetables from you. I wanted to say Thank You- it felt as if everything in the boxes had been packed with tender loving care-the veg smell delicious-and I had some truly yummy bread (wheat free had to be put on hold it looked so tempting) as a thank you from you. I have previously had a veggie box from Riverford-but I will be changing that to a regular order with you. I follow a macrobiotic eating plan but there is nowhere that stocks macro stuff near to me so a joy to be able to get just about everything I need from the same place. If you had stocked Mooli my day would have been even more perfect.

With brightest blessings to all of you. K Scott

When you offer the best service the only way is down. Please don’t go down. E Edgson

I love you Goodness Direct!!

I’m often overseas working and have 2 small kids, but I know whenever I get home I can trust you to deliver my health stuff ASAP. Just received my parcel..perfect.

J Watson-Yarngo

Another great shopping experience!!!!Just wish I’d ordered more!!!!
K Roberts

You have best selection of health foods that i have found.
C Neave

Excellent site & excellent service. Many thanks
M Drasdo

Many thanks for the excellent service we received,the items were very well packed and delivered on time.I shall not only use your company again but recommend to friends.
Again many thanks. J Durham

Still the best on-line shopping site. Keep up the good work. S Dunlop

Overall this is a awesome site with awesome service – perhaps one thing i think might benefit the site is if the products had more visual sub-categories – If possible more vegan products : ) I say this on behalf of all my vegan friends as well as it is frustrating when trying to live a compassionate life is made difficult as a result of “lack of products” – Many Thanks again for making life a little easier : ) R Rayner

Overall very impressed and pleased with great service and products from an ethically aware co-operative, keep up the good work folks, as you’re a beacon of hope to health conscious consumers! A Smith