Welcome to our newsletter. Each month, we will provide articles or stories for women focused on healthy living, with information, tips and recipes on

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Welcome to our newsletter. Each month, we will provide articles or stories for women focused on healthy living, with information, tips and recipes on how to do just that. Please share this newsletter with the women in your life – friends, family, coworkers and neighbors. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is easier when we do it together.

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Focused Relaxation – an Oxymoron?


Does the word “meditation” make you think of a hippie sitting on a cliff cross-legged, humming one note for long periods? Perhaps that is how some people meditate, but there are many other ways that are just as beneficial to your health – mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual. Meditation isn’t just for new agers!

It has long been known that stress plays a part in many diseases (dis-ease) as well as impacting blood pressure, weight, and sleep patterns. Relaxation is vital to our well-being, but the when/where/how can be the stumbling block for many. To reap the benefits of meditation, or focused relaxation, one only needs 10-20 minutes a day in a place without interruptions. While controlling your breathing is helpful at any point of a busy day, to truly benefit from meditation it’s important to step away from the busyness and focus on your mind and body.

Meditating isn’t something that’s done over a cup of coffee or reading a good book. It’s a time to relax deeply, where you can release tension from your body and switch off your mind. You can’t force yourself to relax, but you can learn ways to achieve it with a few simple techniques.

Getting started

There are many ways to meditate; the following are a few steps to help you get started. If you’d prefer a guided process, or want to learn specific methods, check your local community center, college, or neighborhood gym for affordable classes.

Sit comfortably in a quiet place. Choose lighting that won’t distract you (too bright can make it difficult to focus, too dark may result in sleepiness). Candlelight and/or music may be helpful (or distracting). Set yourself up for success by doing what is natural and comfortable for you.

Do a body scan. From the top of your head to the bottoms of your feet, notice where there’s tension, discomfort, or pain.

Focus on your breathing. Slow, measured breathing, using the diaphragm to expand your lungs, brings in oxygen and tells your muscles to relax. If your mind wanders, gently bring it back to focus on your breathing. Even those with years of meditation experience will find their mind wandering. Simply refocus and continue.

Some find it helpful to breathe in the positive and exhale the negative. For example, to the count of four, breathe in and say “peace,” and then breathe out the word “anger.” Find words that help you focus on something positive while releasing the negative.

When the allotted time is ending, bring your focus slowly back to the present. Do another body scan, pause to appreciate the relaxed state of your mind and body. If you’re heading back into a stressful situation, continue the focused breathing to regulate your emotions and physical state.

Physical benefits of meditation

Improved digestion, memory, and immunity
Can relieve Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Lowers blood pressure
May act as an Anti-inflammatory
Improved concentration

Emotional benefits

Finding emotional balance and a sense of calm
Increased self-awareness
Discovering new perspectives on your life
Focusing on the present
Better able to cope with stressful situations

Make room in your schedule for meditation. And make room in your life for a more relaxed, healthier, and focused you.

For questions, comments or additional information contact:
Diane Dandron
Persper-eez Breast Sweat Pads

Our contributing writer is Stacy Monson. She has contributed to local and national publications on a variety of topics from healthy living to dealing with Alzheimer’s disease. She is also a published fiction author. Stacy released her first novel in the Chain of Lakes series, Shattered Image in April 2015. Her second novel in the series, Dance of Grace released in October 2015. Get your copies today at Amazon.

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