More About No-Shave November

             2017 Photo                                                                        2018 Photo

Thank god I look the same!!!


While you’re growing out your beard for the month, you’re likely to tell people about why you’re doing it. It’s a great conversation starter, and can really generate a huge conversation about cancer. It can get more people to make sure they’re getting regular checks for prostate cancer, breast cancer, melanoma, etc.


To properly participate in No Shave November, you should be donating the money that you aren’t spending on razors and shaving accessories to a cancer research organization, such as the Prevent Cancer Foundation, Fight Colorectal Cancer, and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Don’t just participate in No Shave November to grow an awesome beard — make it worthwhile and donate the money you’re saving to cancer research!


There’s more to growing out your beard than just getting a new look. There’s actually health benefits, too! A beard is a natural toxin filter — it keeps things like pollen and dust from getting into your lungs, because they’re clinging to your beard instead.

It can also help prevent blemishes. Shaving gives you a risk of getting bacteria into your skin, especially if you’re not using proper methods. Growing out a beard can combat this.

November is when the weather really starts getting cold, and a beard can act like a scarf for your face and neck. It’s really the perfect time to stop shaving!

Lastly, a beard can help with sun protection. Obviously you will still need to apply sunscreen, because hair isn’t going to block out 100% of the sun’s UV rays, but it’s been proven that a beard can block up to 95% of them! What better way to support cancer awareness than actually practicing it?

No Shave November…

This is me on Day 7…

Can you believe it has been a year already? Can you tell this is me?  OK, it has only been a day! When I first started this, I thought it would be great not to shave for a month. Then as I went two weeks, I couldn’t wait for the time to end. I hated growing a beard…and that is why I do it!

Is there anything you hate…or dislike greatly? Cancer? Diabetes? Depression? Pain Managment? This is the time for you to do something about it!


This is when guys all across the country drop their razors for an entire month until December 1st rolls around. Some men view it as a competition to see who grows the best beard and others do it truly to support the cause.


At some point in the last couple of years you have probably heard of “no shave November”. The whole purpose of no shave November is not to let your beards grow crazy, but to raise awareness for different kinds of cancer including prostate cancer. The goal is to donate the money you normally would use to get a haircut or groom your facial hair to St. Jude or other cancer research charities.

This is a great tradition but the real no shave November meaning and significance often gets lost among all of the jokes, hashtags and hype created by the media. Many men don’t even realize why they do it. Some use it as an excuse to not shave for a whole month. Although the no shave November cause of cancer is a great cause to support, there are other alternative ways to show your support.


So, how did no shave November start? No Shave November started after a father in Chicago passed away from colon cancer. His 8 sons and daughters started this campaign in 2009 in honor of their father. Over 6 years this became a popular thing to do among many throughout the country.

There are a lot of things that people don’t tell you before you decide to participate in this official month of no shaving. From trends to setbacks and to just straight opinions. Even if you like facial hair on a guy, or as a guy it only goes to a certain point. No one likes beards or mustaches that look unkept. Many girls like a man with a well groomed beard, but if you happen to be one who doesn’t, chances are “No Shave November” is not your month.

Hello Gordon Viggiano,

Thank you for your donation to No-Shave November! Your generous gift helps support programs at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Prevent Cancer Foundation, and Fight Colorectal Cancer. All four of these foundations are making great strides to fight, research, and find a cure for cancer, each in their own unique way.

For tax purposes, please keep this email as your receipt.

Donor: Gordon Viggiano
Organization: No Shave November (Tax ID #473673254)
Date: 11-06-2018
Amount: $100

Hairy November,
The No-Shave November Team

What is that???

Posted by Christa Knox

Kale is so much more than a passing fad. Packed with antioxidants, anti-inflammatory properties, and cancer-fighting compounds, kale truly is a super food. Kale is easy to incorporate into any diet: you can put it in salads, smoothies, soups, juices, or make kale chips.

Kale contains an incredible amount of vitamin K, which is needed for the clotting of blood and bone health among other numerous biological processes. Vitamin K is a fat soluble vitamin, so to maximize its absorption, pair it with a healthy fat such as olive oil, salmon, avocado, or nuts/seeds. And add some lemon. The acid from lemon juice helps make kale’s iron more readily available. Make sure to pull the leaves off of that thick stem first, and to soften it up, you can massage it with olive oil to break down the tough fibers.

A word of caution: Because kale is very high in vitamin K, if you are taking blood thinning or anti-coagulant drugs, such as warfarin (brand name Coumadin), you need to avoid large amounts of kale.

Kale juice has been shown to improve coronary artery disease risk in men with high cholesterol. Coronary artery disease is a risk factor for stroke, as is diabetes, which raises your risk of stroke two to four times over people who do not have diabetes. And, you guessed it, kale can help with blood sugar issues. A 2016 study found that eating kale can slow blood sugar rises after a meal. The study showed benefit from eating just one to two leaves.

Did you know that gram for gram, kale has more than twice the vitamin C as an orange? Vitamin C from the foods you eat is associated with a lowered risk of stroke, as it is a strong antioxidant, which can slow the progression of atherosclerosis. The anti-inflammatory benefits from kale are especially important as inflammation is involved in stroke risk.

How are you going to serve kale? Here’s one of my favorite ways:

Green Monster Smoothie
Serves 1

1 c. Liquid base (coconut water, almond milk, coconut milk, milk)
Four kale leaves, pulled from stems
Handful of fresh/frozen blueberries
1/2-1 banana

1 Tbsp. maple syrup, honey, or 1 date (only if you need a sweetener)
3-5 ice cubes

Power It Up
1 Tbsp. ground flaxseed
1 scoop protein powder
1 Tbsp. almond/nut butter

Blend liquid and kale on high, until liquified. Add other ingredients, and blend on high.

Christa Knox, MA, MScN, is a stroke survivor and holistic nutritionist in Portland, Ore. Visit Christa’s website

Sometimes, people send me an article worth reading…

No-Shave November!!!


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It’s coming along….only 5 days!

But this is important to EVERY male: get a PSA (prostate specific antigen) …this month;  I go in for a physical next week. If anybody over 50 is NOT getting this done, forward the article.  If he still refuses, make an appointment FOR him and MAKE him go. 1 out of 6 are diagnosed with prostate cancer. If you catch is NOW, he WILL be saved.

You WILL be saving his life…don’t wait.

Love the Library!

IMG_0431I had the great privilege of speaking at our public library last night.  In the audience was my wonderful social worker from the rehab hospital, stroke survivors, cancer survivors, caregivers, friends, and people who just love the library.  My speech went well but it was the Q&A that really stood out for me.

Once I stepped away from the podium and into the middle of the audience, stroke survivors who struggle with speech began asking questions and telling their stories.  Cancer survivors and caregivers told their own stories of teamwork and overcoming.  We talked about books and support groups and other resources that helped us.  We laughed and encouraged each other for nearly an hour!

Interaction with the audience is always my favorite part of being a speaker.  Last night was another example of the power of sharing and being vulnerable and acknowledging our weaknesses.

Jill Viggiano