1. This Quarantine Cookbook Is A Fantastic Guide To Eating Through Your Pantry
  2. What You Need to Know About Manuka Honey’s Immunity Benefits
  3. Optimize Your Immune System with Ancient Nutrition
  4. My Favorite Healthy Tuna Salad
  5. Happy(-ish) Meals
  6. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan: Week of 03-20-2020
  7. Myths and Facts About Coronavirus
  8. Respect Your Elderberries
  9. The Top 10 Desserts I Make the Most 
  10. 17 Easy, Delish, and Healthy Pantry Meals
  11. How To Prepare For A Self-Quarantine
  12. A Life Update
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  14. 7 Immune-Boosting Recipes You Need Right Now
  15. Sheet Pan Lemon Cajun Shrimp, Potatoes, and Vegetables
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  17. The 7 Best Immune-Boosting Supplements
  18. Coronavirus: The Facts, and How to Protect Yourself
  19. What is Regenerative Agriculture?
  20. Fabulous Fibre
  21. The Power of Colour to Heal
  22. 4 Reasons to Fall in Love with Earthing
  23. 6 Common Environmental Toxins and How to Avoid Them: A Shortlist
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  25. 8 Products Every Natural Skincare Lover Needs
  26. Sticky Orange Tempeh with Maple Thyme Roasted Vegetables
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  38. A List of Our Favorite Silicone-Free Hair Products
  39. 13 Stretch Mark Creams That Are Safe for Pregnancy
  40. Our Favorite Non-Toxic, Chemical-Free Sunscreens
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  105. Best Hostess Gift Ever
  106. What I Ate Wednesday: Fiancé Edition!
  107. Pumpkin Walnut Burgers with Chipotle Yogurt Sauce
  108. Favorite Fluffy Whole Wheat Pancakes
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  110. Vegan Chili Cornbread Casserole
  111. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan
  112. Orca Conservation
  113. Fall’s Functional Foods
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  115. Healthy Pumpkin Cheesecake Dip
  116. Simple Swaps for Your Zero Waste Journey
  117. Lessons on Food and Farming in Monterey, California
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  132. 33 Mouthwatering Healthy Vegetarian Recipes for Dinner Tonight
  133. What I Ate Wednesday
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  157. What Is Dementia? Symptoms, Types, and Diagnosis
  158. Cushing Syndrome (For Parents)
  159. Do Memory Problems Always Mean Alzheimers Disease?
  160. Manganese
  161. Study Shows that Disrupted Gut Bacteria May Contribute to the Spread of Breast Cancer
  162. She Faced Breast Cancer At 16 With Little Help From Doctors. Now She’s Speaking Out On Behalf Of Black Women
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  164. Participating in the Arts Creates Paths to Healthy Aging
  165. Setting Goals to be More Active Slows Memory Decline in Older African Americans
  166. Study Shows Music Eases Pain and Other Symptoms for Patients Undergoing Breast Cancer Treatment
  167. 49-Year-Old Breast Cancer Patient Grateful She Didn’t Wait Until 50 for a Mammogram
  168. Teen’s Innovative “SMART Armour” Protects Breast Cancer Patients from Radiation
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  176. The Final Word on Whether Alcohol Actually Has Any Health Benefits
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Monday, March 30, 2020
  1. This Quarantine Cookbook Is A Fantastic Guide To Eating Through Your Pantry
  2. What You Need to Know About Manuka Honey’s Immunity Benefits
  3. Optimize Your Immune System with Ancient Nutrition
  4. My Favorite Healthy Tuna Salad
  5. Happy(-ish) Meals
  6. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan: Week of 03-20-2020
  7. Myths and Facts About Coronavirus
  8. Respect Your Elderberries
  9. The Top 10 Desserts I Make the Most 
  10. 17 Easy, Delish, and Healthy Pantry Meals
  11. How To Prepare For A Self-Quarantine
  12. A Life Update
  13. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan: Week of 03-14-2020
  14. 7 Immune-Boosting Recipes You Need Right Now
  15. Sheet Pan Lemon Cajun Shrimp, Potatoes, and Vegetables
  16. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan: Week of 03-06-2020
  17. The 7 Best Immune-Boosting Supplements
  18. Coronavirus: The Facts, and How to Protect Yourself
  19. What is Regenerative Agriculture?
  20. Fabulous Fibre
  21. The Power of Colour to Heal
  22. 4 Reasons to Fall in Love with Earthing
  23. 6 Common Environmental Toxins and How to Avoid Them: A Shortlist
  24. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan: Week of 02-29-2020
  25. 8 Products Every Natural Skincare Lover Needs
  26. Sticky Orange Tempeh with Maple Thyme Roasted Vegetables
  27. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan: Week of 02-22-2020
  28. What’s NEW in the JSHealth App 2.0
  29. Chocolate & Peanut Butter Fondant
  30. The Best Non-Toxic Nail Polish and Nail Polish Removers on Amazon
  31. Introducing Alchemy Meal Prep!
  32. Safe Anti-Aging Skincare for Breastfeeding Moms
  33. Our Pick of the Best Natural Shampoo Bars That Are Hot Right Now
  34. Our Favorite Sulfate-Free Shampoos of 2020
  35. Natural and Eco-Friendly Scrubs for a Glowing Face and Body
  36. Top 7 Washable and Eco-Friendly Makeup Removers
  37. 7 Products Every Natural Skincare Lover Needs
  38. A List of Our Favorite Silicone-Free Hair Products
  39. 13 Stretch Mark Creams That Are Safe for Pregnancy
  40. Our Favorite Non-Toxic, Chemical-Free Sunscreens
  41. Book review: The Easy 5-Ingredient Pescatarian Cookbook
  42. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan: Week of 02-15-2020
  43. Vegan Chickpea Walnut Tacos
  44. Permission to Love Yourself, Too
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  46. Lovely Meals Lately
  47. Tart Cherry Orange Pistachio Bread (Gluten-Free!)
  48. Top 6 Sodium Culprits
  49. Fasting and You
  50. Drool-Worthy Healthy Lunch Recipes You Need in Your Life
  51. Cherry Orange Pistachio Bread (Gluten-Free!)
  52. The Truth About Plastics
  53. Heartfelt Foods
  54. BPA Explained
  55. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan: Week of 02-01-2020
  56. Savvy Spending with Nicole Lapin
  57. 5-Ingredient Peanut Butter Chia Balls
  58. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan: Week of 01-25-2020
  59. Can neurogastronomy save the world?
  60. Healthy Tuna Noodle Casserole
  61. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan: 01-18-2020
  62. Pantry 2020 Basics
  63. Top 10 Tips for Cooking Dried Legumes
  64. What I Ate Wednesday + Day In the Life
  65. Brussels Sprout Kale Caesar Salad with Rosemary Croutons
  66. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan: Week of 01-11-2020
  67. Eat for your Dosha
  68. Keep it Moving
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  70. Apple Cider Vinegar for Digestion
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  87. 4 Diabetes Game Changers
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  100. What I Wednesday: FNCE in Philly!
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  102. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan
  103. Unearthing Evidence-Based Integrative Remedies to Stress
  104. Scribble Anxiety Away
  105. Best Hostess Gift Ever
  106. What I Ate Wednesday: Fiancé Edition!
  107. Pumpkin Walnut Burgers with Chipotle Yogurt Sauce
  108. Favorite Fluffy Whole Wheat Pancakes
  109. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan
  110. Vegan Chili Cornbread Casserole
  111. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan
  112. Orca Conservation
  113. Fall’s Functional Foods
  114. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan
  115. Healthy Pumpkin Cheesecake Dip
  116. Simple Swaps for Your Zero Waste Journey
  117. Lessons on Food and Farming in Monterey, California
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  119. Quick and Easy-One Pan Veggie Red Curry
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  121. Here’s How to Live a more Colourful Life
  122. Cooking with CBD
  123. Eco-friendly Food Storage
  124. Bento Box Recipes
  125. How to Make Sushi Sandwich
  126. Healthy Vegan Buffalo Cauliflower Dip
  127. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan: Week of 09-14-2019
  128. 5 lunchbox ideas
  129. 17 Free and Easy Ways to Be a Self-Care Expert
  130. Fluffy Vegan Pumpkin Muffins
  131. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan: Week of 09-07-2019
  132. 33 Mouthwatering Healthy Vegetarian Recipes for Dinner Tonight
  133. What I Ate Wednesday
  134. The Best Apple Cider Vinegar Salad Dressing
  135. VOTE TODAY!
  136. Veggie Stir Fry with Peanut Sauce
  137. Twilight Time: Reading With Kids
  138. Keep your cool
  139. Tart Cherry Crumble Pie
  140. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan
  141. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan
  142. Your brain on… air pollution?
  143. Brain Boosters
  144. MCT oil Coconut’s healthful gift
  145. Hot right now
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  148. What is CBD? A Guide to Health Benefits, Usage, and More!
  149. Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plan
  150. Hummus Toast – 4 Ways!
  151. What I Ate Wednesday
  152. Fluffy Vegan Blueberry Banana Muffins
  153. Advances in Colorectal Cancer Research
  154. Advances in Breast Cancer Research
  155. Cleft Palate With Cleft Lip
  156. What is CPR?
  157. What Is Dementia? Symptoms, Types, and Diagnosis
  158. Cushing Syndrome (For Parents)
  159. Do Memory Problems Always Mean Alzheimers Disease?
  160. Manganese
  161. Study Shows that Disrupted Gut Bacteria May Contribute to the Spread of Breast Cancer
  162. She Faced Breast Cancer At 16 With Little Help From Doctors. Now She’s Speaking Out On Behalf Of Black Women
  163. What Do We Know About Healthy Aging?
  164. Participating in the Arts Creates Paths to Healthy Aging
  165. Setting Goals to be More Active Slows Memory Decline in Older African Americans
  166. Study Shows Music Eases Pain and Other Symptoms for Patients Undergoing Breast Cancer Treatment
  167. 49-Year-Old Breast Cancer Patient Grateful She Didn’t Wait Until 50 for a Mammogram
  168. Teen’s Innovative “SMART Armour” Protects Breast Cancer Patients from Radiation
  169. New Drug Improves 3-Year Survival by 50% for Young Women with Stage IV Breast Cancer
  170. Young Mother’s Life Tragically Taken by Breast Cancer After She Refused Traditional Treatments
  171. NIH Study Tracks Exercise with Mobile Apps to Improve Heart Health
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  173. 3rd Grader Writes Note for Teacher Battling Breast Cancer to Read Right Before Treatment
  174. Skin Care
  175. Have Back Pain? These Are the Basic Spinal Structures You Need to Know
  176. The Final Word on Whether Alcohol Actually Has Any Health Benefits
  177. New One-Time “Seed” Treatment for Breast Cancer Being Used in Philadelphia
  178. Julia Louis-Dreyfus Talks About The Side Effects of Chemotherapy
  179. Teacher on Leave for Breast Cancer Treatment Forced to Pay for Her Own Substitute
  180. 27-Year-Old Thought She Was Injured Falling Off A Horse, But Then She Learned She Had Breast Cancer
  181. Should Surgery And Radiation Be The Standard Treatment For DCIS? The COMET Study Is Finding Out
  182. Judge Rules That 3-Year-Old Child With Leukemia Must Get Chemo Against Parents’ Wishes
  183. This Charcoal Powder Drastically Whitens Teeth Without Any Chemicals
  184. These Black Cherry-Flavored Shots Help Accelerate Weight Loss
  185. Olivia Newton-John Talks About How She Stays Positive Amid Cancer Battle
  186. This Army Captain Mom Was Diagnosed with Breast Cancer When She Was Just 8 Weeks Pregnant
  187. High-Deductible Health Plans Linked to Delayed Diagnosis and Treatment of Breast Cancer
  188. Antibiotic shortages are putting Aboriginal kids at risk – The Conversation AU
  189. Cuddle beds bringing some physical comfort to end-of-life patients – ABC News
  190. People who skip breakfast are five times more likely to die after a heart attack – Daily Mail
  191. Yale researchers revive cells in dead pig brains – Yale Daily News
  192. Scientists revive cellular activity in brain of dead pigs: report – Fox News
  193. High-Deductible Health Policies Linked To Delayed Diagnosis And Treatment – NPR
  194. After Breast Cancer Diagnosis, Technology Professor Teaches Computers to Read Mammograms
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  200. Having a resting heart rate of 75 beats per minute DOUBLES your risk of an early death – Daily Mail
  201. Wear protective goggles to play badminton
  202. Herbal drug kratom linked to almost 100 overdose deaths, CDC says – USA TODAY
  203. Ability to lift weights quickly can mean a longer life – EurekAlert
  204. Climate change is making allergy season worse – CNN
  205. 11 Unexpected Ways You Can Relieve Headaches – HuffPost
  206. New Jersey preschoolers have highest autism rates in the nation, researchers say
  207. Auburn gymnast who suffered severe injuries: My pain is not your entertainment
  208. A four-day work week could improve our health and cut carbon emissions
  209. Promising treatment for chronic fatigue syndrome fails large trial

For 23 years, Troy Bright has been watching whales.

When I meet him on the shore of Beautiful Bay on Malcolm Island, BC, on a hazy late August afternoon, he is perched atop a log, hydrophone system at the ready, scanning the horizon for signs of the orcas that mysteriously come to rub themselves along the shallow beach’s smooth stones.

A self-taught orca expert, Bright has spent the past 23 summers living on the beach and studying Northern Resident orcas. He knows them so well that he’s even able to recognize them by ear. But this iconic Canadian species is under threat due to salmon stock decline, habitat disturbance, and the pollution of our oceans.

All about orcas

Orcas, also called killer whales, are technically the largest species of the dolphin family. Three distinct types of orcas inhabit the waters around BC: Northern Residents and Southern Residents, who mainly feed on Chinook salmon, and Bigg’s orcas—also known as transient orcas—who hunt a variety of mammals, including seals. The three types of orcas do not interact or interbreed.

While Bigg’s population numbers have been stable, resident orcas are at risk. Canada’s Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) now classifies the dwindling Southern Resident population as endangered and considers the flatlining Northern Resident group to be threatened.

Under pressure

In the 2018 federal budget, the Canadian government committed $167 million over five years to help protect and recover endangered whale species, including Southern Residents. And for good reason: orcas face threats from all angles, says Bright.

Declining salmon populations

In our oceans, everything is connected, and declining stocks of Chinook salmon—resident orcas’ preferred snack—have been in decline, largely due to habitat degradation, overfishing, fish farming, and the building of dams that sever salmon from their spawning grounds. As a result, resident orcas are going hungry. This has dire consequences: salmon scarcity has been linked to late pregnancy failure, a devastating trend for a species with already low birth rates.

Contaminants

As the world’s largest apex predator, orcas are exposed to a range of contaminants that flow up the food chain and lodge themselves in orcas’ blubber. This includes pesticides and now-banned polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).

To compound the issue of salmon scarcity, starving whales are at risk of these toxins leaking from their blubber into their bloodstreams, leading to further health problems. One study found that PCB pollution is likely to have had a significant negative impact on the now-negligible orca populations in Europe.

Shipping traffic

According to Jared Towers, a cetacean research technician at DFO, orcas rely on a relatively silent environment to locate their prey and communicate with their pods. Pervasive noise from boats, both personal and commercial, is interfering with these sounds and appears to disrupt orcas’ natural behaviour.

In essence, says Bright, “We’re making orcas work harder now—they need to look farther, call louder to communicate, and travel faster to survive.”

Whale watching—what’s the deal?

Most of us don’t interact with orcas as a part of our daily lives, unless we’re lucky enough to spot their blow from the distance as we pass by on a ferry or kayak. In fact, Bright first became enthralled by killer whales on a ferry to Alert Bay, BC, in 1997. Another way to see them is whale watching.

According to Bright, whale watching plays an important role in introducing humans to our aquatic neighbours. “People come from all over the world to see orcas and to make a connection,” he says. “If whale watching didn’t exist, many people would not have gotten involved in conservation.”

Towers agrees. “Whale watching trips help people to take conservation seriously,” he says. “It can really benefit people to go out and learn from an experienced naturalist on board.”

Did you know?

A female resident orca can expect to live for an average of 50 years, while a male averages 30.

Orcas use sounds to navigate, communicate, and hunt. Each pod has a distinct pitch.

Choose wisely

Whale watching companies have come under fire for disturbing whales’ habitats and interfering with their underwater communication. Thankfully, the federal government has recently enacted new legislation to prevent commercial boats from approaching closer than 400 metres of Southern Residents, and 200 metres of Northern Residents.

If you go whale watching, look for companies that are members of a whale watching association: they adhere to even stricter codes of conduct, and a portion of profits go toward conservation efforts such as beach cleaning, research, and salmon habitat restoration.

How can you help?

In addition to supporting conservation efforts, there are other ways you can help orcas.

Choose sustainable salmon

If you’re going to eat salmon, opt for a species other than Chinook—leave those for the orcas. And say no to farmed salmon, whose feedlots spread disease among the
wild population.

Towers also highlights the importance of efforts to restore damaged salmon habitats: without a healthy spawning habitat and a safe migration route, salmon cannot survive. “Our ocean’s ecosystem is like one big chain, and if you break any link, the whole thing is broken,” he says.

Purchase and use wisely

Even small lifestyle tweaks make a difference. For example, by switching to natural household cleaning products, you can reduce the number of contaminants that eventually drain into the ocean. The same goes for buying and disposing of products that contain PCBs.

Orcas are also affected by purchasing choices that we wouldn’t normally associate with the ocean. Take shipping traffic, for example. “We’re driving around in vehicles all the time,” Towers says. “This increases demand for oil and the risk of a dangerous oil spill.”

Finally, try building a rain garden in your backyard, which will filter storm run-off into a planting bed instead of letting it gush down the gutter and back into the sea, sucking up contaminants along the way.

“Do what you can,” says Bright. “Every person who starts doing some better things counts.”

With conscious effort, we can all help this beautiful species to thrive—and ensure that Bright has beach-loving whales to watch for decades to come.

Orca conservation for kids

Kid-friendly books, films, and events are a great way to engage younger generations with orca conservation. There are plenty of “fun-fact” videos available on YouTube.

For aspiring mini-marine biologists who want to dive deeper, check out OrcaLive—an initiative by Dr. Paul Spong, cetologist and founder of the research organization OrcaLab—which allows users to see and hear now-archived live footage from orcas in the Johnstone Strait.

Get involved

Consider supporting, either financially or otherwise, a reputable Canadian orca conservation organization such as

A former alive editor, Isabela Vera lives for kayak trips where she can catch a glimpse of white and black in the expanse of the Pacific Ocean.

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