Julia Knight, Area Manager, Independent Consultant with Arbonne International, visited our Three and a Half Acres young adults at Harlem United H.O.M.E. center last Tuesday to teach them about nutrition, skin care, and cleansing. The talk began with the passing around of one of her products, a Vegan, Chocolate Protein Shake made of yellow pea protein, brown rice, and cranberry. This tasty drink is Kosher Certified, gluten-free, and contains no whey or soy.  Hearing it was healthy had some of our students skeptical at first, but soon everyone was asking for samples as each saw his friend raving over how good it was.

As the questions rolled in, Julia shared some simple health facts to help guide the young people in making informed choices. Here are some that really stood out:

  • Diet Soda contains aspartame a chemical linked to a long list of diseases including Parkinson’s and Diabetes.
  • Processed foods that a marketed as healthy can be misleading. Eating whole foods and fresh fruits and vegetables every 3 hours is better for our energy. Healthy fats like avocado and olive oil aid the body.
  • We are not what we eat but what we absorb so having Pre/ Pro Biotics helps our body get the most from our food and create a healthy gut.  Having more fiber in our diet aids the body in removing toxins and makes us feel more full. When we remove toxins we reduce inflammation and improve our health.
  • For optimal health for skin, brain function and digestion, once should drink plenty of water. Julia recommended that we drink 1/2 our body weight in ounces. IE: if you weigh 150 you drink 75 ounces of water. In addition, to add another 8 oz of water if you have a cup of coffee or glass of alcohol.

In regards to skin, Julia spoke of her own personal history with Melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.  The inspiration she received from her dancing daughter while she lay in bed recovering from her Melanoma Surgery birthed the poetry for a film installation called SKIN, a meditation. The beauty of being “in our skin” and appreciating others SKIN, and having the freedom to authentically express ourselves was a theme of Julia’s; woven into her sharing on health and product choices.

Here are the skin facts she shared:

  • 0ur skin is our largest organ, and products we apply to our skin bypasses filtering organs of liver and kidneys. It is our most effective delivery system. Julia spoke of the animal rendering found in over the counter products and its toxicity, pointing out that what we put on our skin goes into our organs in just 26 seconds.
  • Mineral oil is found in 98% of all body care products and make-up in the US. There are over 100 names for mineral oil. It is a cheap filler made from the distillation process of gasoline. Using products with mineral oil actually prematurely ages and dehydrates the skin…second only to the sun. Using essential oils and plant based, vegan products are better for caring for the skin. Mineral oil is even found in pop-tarts and Cheetos!
  • Parabens, are linked to causing breast cancer. These are used to extend the life of a product sold off a shelf. 5-10 years. Chemical fragrance and Phthalates are also found in many products to cover up the smell of animal rendering. A 3 Billion dollar industry.

The class ended with another sampling, this time a hand lotion made from the FC5 line, with Strawberry, Kiwi, Mango Carrot and Pumpkin extracts. She left each one of the participants with Skin Care samples from the Calm Line, the Re9 Men’s Skin Care line and the FC5 line to take home, hand outs on the Arbonne Business and an Article that covered 7 steps to being a love activist by Alice Walker.

Julia is an Area Manager, Independent Consultant with Arbonne International.  www.juliaknight.arbonne.com  She is a Co-Creator and Producer of SKIN, a Meditation. With Creative Partner, Valerie Barnes, and Sound and Set Designer,Timothy Cramer, and Contributing Artist, Photographer, Kimia Rahgozar. www.eyelovemyskin.com She is an actress and has performed on Stage Film and TV.  SAG-AFTRA Member.  She has a BFA in drama from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. She lives in Harlem with her family, and loves being a part of the Land Yoga Community.

Her offering is a part of our newest commitment at Three and a Half Acres Yoga to offer a holistic health workshop once a month to our students at the H.O.M.E. center, in addition to our twice weekly yoga, meditation, and mindfulness programming. If you have an offering and would like to volunteer, please contact us at jessica@threeandahalfacres.org. If you like the work we are doing and would like to help it be sustained and continue to grow, please consider joining us March 15th for our annual benefit or making any sized contribution here. If you like stories like this one and to keep informed of all we are accomplishing at Three and a Half Acres please join our new mailing list here. Certain opportunities and information will be given only to those who opt in, so we hope you do!