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It is heartbreaking to me that since the inception of America, this country has been reaching and climbing to attain the goal of “Justice for All.” Today, young men are being killed and treated as worthless members of American society. It so happens that these young men are African-American.

When the founding fathers drafted the Constitution of the United States in 1789, the document excluded about 6 million people living in America who were considered chattel (such as a slave, piece of furniture, or something a person owns other than land or buildings), even though it was a document to guide and legally support justice and freedom. It was the first document of its kind.

The Constitution of the United States is the supreme law of the United States of America, yet it still cannot negate crimes of hatred and ignorance. Originally, it comprised seven articles delineating the government’s national frame. Since the Constitution came into force in 1789, it has been amended 27 times. In general, the first ten amendments, known collectively as the Bill of Rights, offer specific protections of individual liberty and justice and place restrictions on powers of the government.

The Emancipation Proclamation was signed on January 1, 1863 as the nation reached its third bloody year of civil war between the states over injustice and free labor (slavery). Despite its expansive wording, the Emancipation Proclamation was limited in many ways. It applied only to states that had seceded from the Union, leaving slavery untouched in other states. It did not end slavery.

The Voting Rights Act of 1965 is a landmark piece of federal legislation in the United States that prohibits racial discrimination in voting. President Lyndon B. Johnson signed it into law during the height of the American Civil Rights Movement on August 6, 1965, and Congress later amended the Act five times to expand its protections. Designed to enforce voting rights guaranteed by the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution, the Act allowed for mass enfranchisement of racial minorities throughout the country, especially in the South. Today, the United States Department of Justice considers the Act the most effective piece of civil rights legislation ever enacted in this country.

With that said, there is a history of fighting for justice and equality in America since its inception and inculcation of slavery on its soil. Documents have been created, revised and amended, but injustices still run deep in a country that was built on injustice. We can compose documents, implement education about equality, even post on Facebook, but we cannot change the hearts of men and root out hatred and fear. Only God can make that change.

What we can do is take a stand and put our concerns and heartbreaks into action by getting politically involved, writing letters to our legislators, writing articles, holding our  municipalities responsible for what they do and don’t do—by attending community meetings of city councils, voting and becoming a voice in your community on a consistent basis. We don’t give up and allow justice and equality to get buried in the world chaos. We should stand firmly and put into action what we want to see, not just talk about it.

None of us are free and equal until all of us are free and equal; and in the end, justice is rooted in the very nature of God. He delivers justice in His own time. Human judges do well to remember God in their courts. God does not receive bribes or pervert justice.

Janet M. Brooks is Owner/CEO of Fortitude Health & Wellness, Inc., a boutique, full service wellness company specializing in cultural wellness and self-care. She has worked in the field of wellness for more than 25 years, focusing on nutrition and fitness outreach. Her clients include U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, United HealthCare, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Aetna, as well as Educational Consultant for KCET in Los Angeles.  Visit us at http://www.fortitudehw.com.
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Is It Love or Oxytocin

Do you value yourself enough to say no and wait on the right man to cherish, adore and love you for you and not be seen as a one-night stand, a sexual encounter that is limited to only one or a few occasions? Do you value yourself or resort to the “hook up” – have sex with someone, not the “one”? Then there is the “booty-call”, a late night call to arrange a sexual meeting on an ad hoc basis. Why can’t we make a man wait?

Why is it so hard to value who and what we are as women? Women hold great power in this world, and lest we forget, we give birth to men. So, with that said, let’s not cheapen our worth for short-term gratification. You are worth more than a man’s desires, and even your own. Sex is not a spring board to a relationship. It clouds the vision and can stunt the growth of relationships. Sex is an expression of love, not the other way around.

If women held out to get the best from a man without adding sex as part of the package, collectively women would call more of the shots, and marriage would be on the table faster than you could spell it. Sex begins to complicate a relationship that is out of wedlock because emotions begin to run rampant. During sex, an emotional and physical investment has been made. When a woman gives her body to a man, she is giving him one of the greatest gifts God has given her.

Women must understand the difference between true feelings and oxytocin, which is referred to as the bonding hormone. It is believed to be critical in human pair bonding. Oxytocin is a powerful hormone. When we hug or kiss a loved one, oxytocin levels drive up. It also acts as a neurotransmitter in the brain. In fact, the hormone plays a huge role in bonding you to that man you become sexually involved with in your life. It is released during sex. So, when you decide to bond with that man, nature also helps you out. This hormone boosts trust, empathy and increases happiness in women. It also reduces stress and anxiety.

Having sex at the onset of a relationship can be confusing when oxytocin begins its march through your body. This might be the reason some women cannot let go of a man when he calls it quits, or keys his car, follows him home or to work, or calls a man’s wife if they are having an affair. It makes you a little crazy because hormones are telling you this “man belongs to me”, even though he does not.

Women are special creatures. God has told us this. Yet, we allow a man to take us down, lie to us when we know they are lying, and have sex with them even when we know they are married or have other girlfriends.

What is the extent of our value as women in human society? When women become so desperate they become an object, no longer a person to be respected, then we have regressed on the scale of growth and self-actualization. Women must be present to understand they are a portal to empowering other women. Our sense of our own worthiness is necessary in order to attain love, peace, joy, power and a sound mind.

Our worth comes from a source on the INSIDE of us. We create it through faith by acting on the singular belief that we matter. It is the foundation of our ability to believe in ourselves. When we believe that we are and can be change agents in the world, we respect ourselves as well as our fellow sisters and what belongs to each of us. We are so much more than a sexual act. What is your love worth?

About The Author

Janet Brooks
Janet M. Brooks is Owner/CEO of Fortitude Health & Wellness, Inc., http://www.fortitudehw.com, a boutique, full service wellness company specializing in cultural wellness and self-care. She has worked in the field of wellness for more than 25 years, focusing on nutrition and fitness outreach. Her clients include U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, United HealthCare, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Aetna, as well as Educational Consultant for KCET in Los Angeles.
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Fortitude Health and Wellness – A Season For Change


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Want Inner Balance? Discover These 4 Keys to Wellness

As a wellness expert, I work with clients nationally and internationally to move individuals and employees from a unhealthy to healthy status. Wellness is about wholeness and you cannot be whole unless your body is in sync – mind, body, and spirit. Many companies we service have major concerns about their bottom line and high health care costs impacting their bottom line. Our goal at Fortitude Health & Wellness, Inc. is to change the paradigm of health and wellness from diagnosing chronic diseases to prevention – nutrition and fitness.

To be most effective, we look at four critical factors: metabolic processes, unhealthy lifestyle behavior, fitness, and stress. We use four techniques to educate and modify unhealthy lifestyle behavior: Body Composition/Nutritional Assessments, Body pH Balance Tracking, Strength Training, and Stress Reduction to move our clients to total fitness. Once we educate how to reach goals, they work hard to stay fit. It is a lifestyle change that must take place.

Know your body from the inside out

Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) is an excellent screening tool that allows us to see what is
happening inside the body (metabolic processes). It is a body composition/nutritional assessment that is non-invasive and tells us if you have inflammation, ideal weight, fat-to-muscle ratio, hydration status, Basil Metabolic Rate (how many calories one’s body burns in a resting state), BMI, and cellular health. BIA’s also tells us if you are eating healthfully.

BIA’s help us to track biomarkers within the body. We track eight biomarkers that give a prescription for lengthening one’s health span. One of our goals at Fortitude is to guide and educate clients into a longer, healthier, and more vibrant lifestyle. We do this by analyzing and intervening eight biomarkers of aging. These health markers include: 1) Muscle Mass, 2) Strength, 3) Basal Metabolic Rate, 4) Body Fat Percentage, 5) Aerobic Capacity, 6) Body’s Blood Sugar Tolerance, 7) Cholesterol/HDL Ratio and Triglycerides, and 8) Blood Pressure. Visit us at http://www.fortitudehhw.com to learn more about BIA’s.

Wellness is also looking at body proportions. We want to be as close to 80% muscle and 20% fat as we can get, and hydration is imperative. We should drink half our body weight in water daily to also help with building muscle. If you weigh 150 pounds, drink 75 ounces of water daily. The body needs water to build muscle, muscle has a high percentage of water – fat has none.

Know your pH balance

Learn to help your digestive system. Drink a glass of lemon water first thing in the morning or a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to better prepare your digestive system for daily caloric intake. This habit also helps you maintain healthy pH balances within your body.

Knowing your pH balance is also important and testing is important because we want to maintain an alkaline body. Cancer cannot survive in an alkaline environment. An acidic body is a body waiting for disaster.

You can test overall pH balance or imbalance of your body through your saliva. Saliva pH can range anywhere from 5.5 to 7.5 or more. If you have enough alkaline minerals, your saliva test should register a nice 7.0 to 7.5; but, if your mineral reserves are too low, acids will overwhelm the system, and you’ll test less than 7.0.

The pH scale goes from 0-14. Zero is very acidic (think battery acid) and 14 is very alkaline (think lye). In general, pH of the human body should be slightly alkaline — about 7.4. A pH reading in the Optimal Zone tells your body it’s doing well, while a pH reading in the Danger Zone might mean you’re at risk for serious disorders. Even a slight pH imbalance can make you feel tired, promote weight gain, give you problems digesting food, and create aches and pains in your body.

Keys to optimal wellness

Fitness also plays a key role in wellness. It is important to exercise at least a minimal of three times per week for 45 minutes. It takes 30 minutes for the body to start burning fat. Also incorporate strength training; weight training should be done at least three times per week.

Last, but not least, is stress reduction. Stress is in our lives daily, whether it is good or bad stress. It is the culprit for many illnesses. People are aware of conscious beliefs and behaviors, but not of subconscious behaviors. We don’t even acknowledge that the subconscious mind is at play.

Take time to look at your life and every person or thing that impacts you. Spend quiet time with yourself, meditate, listen to music, practice deep breathing or physical activity. All of these exercises help us move toward deep thinking and relaxation, which moves us closer to subconscious thinking.

Each new day is a chance to live healthier, mind, body, and spirit. Uncover your path to wellness. Your body will give thanks with good health and longevity! Visit us at http://www.fortitudehw.com.

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Lifting Up Our Woman of Valor

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Nothing good comes fast.#FHW

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What are you made of ?? #FHW

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Build a better lunch …build a better body#FHW

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Think before you drink …….

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