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The First American Samurai With Divine Purpose

Koyamada International Foundation

The Last Samurai star Shin Koyamada and wife of 16 years, Nia Lyte, tried everything possible to get pregnant, but dishearteningly, nothing worked. As time slipped by and Nia’s biological clock started ticking, the odds of pregnancy became overwhelmingly against them. The couple tried many rounds of IVF treatments with top fertility doctors in different countries, reiki, yoga, acupuncture, Tibetan meditation, natural herbs, hormone stimulation, astrology, and a cosmos analysis to see if the ancestors were interfering, yet all techniques failed. With each defeat, the Koyamada’s spirits waned, fear and anxiety increased. A miscarriage almost sealed the decision of starting a natural family simply would not happen. After the miscarriage crisis, when Nia and Shin went to Japan, their Shintoist Japanese friend, who had a similar journey, said that a spiritual person told the couple to beseech the Virgin Mary on their behalf. Coming from a Japanese Shintoist, Nia was taken aback by the recommendation and yet touched when she met her friend’s miracle daughter. Back in Los Angeles and during the dawn of the pandemic, Nia joined a small Christian Bible group, and Nia and the group prayed together for a baby. Nia got pregnant three months later. Nia boldly recalled, “This changed our family. It is different when you read about miracles or see them in films. When you experience a miracle in your own flesh, it is very powerful. I made a promise to God that if He could give us a baby, I would share this miracle with the world. I would also give Jesus and his mother Virgin Mary all the glory. It may sound crazy, but when everything else failed, the power of prayer worked for our family.” In early 2021, little Shun Nathan Koyamada entered into Shin and Nia’s lives. Not giving up on each other, sticking it out together, and overcoming the trauma of five long years, Shin and Nia further proved that marriage truly is not always about looking at each other but looking in the same direction. Proud father Shin shares that the name Shun is derived from his ancestors, the Hayato People who lived in the Satsuma Domain, today's Kagoshima Prefecture located at the southern most area of Japan's Kyushu Island, where 900+ years ago the name came into use by the samurai under the title Hayato no suke. Nia added that Nathan means gift from God. Shin discovered his samurai ancestry via his grandfather, telling him old stories based on the grandfather's life-long research on the subject. Surprisingly, Shin didn't know his samurai ancestry until after the release of the Hollywood blockbuster Last Samurai, a film influenced by the 1877 Satsuma Rebellion, where Shin's character Nobutada Katsumoto, inspired by his real samurai ancestor, befriends Tom Cruise's Algren role. Apart from his samurai descendants, Shun's unique heritage includes being half Colombian, half Japanese, and the first American samurai born in the United States. As Nobutada might say, "Jolly Good.” According to Shin and Nia, doctors said that since science should have worked but failed, she had a two percent chance of having a healthy natural pregnancy. They concurred that Nia giving birth to a biological baby was a medical miracle. Shun is a miracle baby and is proof to the Koyamadas of a higher power in charge. For Shin and Nia, having a baby completes the circle in their lives. After co-founding KIF ( Koyamada International Foundation ), a nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring youth and women to achieve their dreams. Now for the Koyamadas, their work takes on added meaning beyond being symbolic. It is now more personal. KIF can create miracles for others. Because after their personal miracle, the Koyamadas have the strength of three spirits: dad, Shin; mum, Nia; and son, Shun. Follow Nia and Shin on social media Facebook @NiaLyteShow and @shinkoyamada, Twitter @nialyte and @shinkoyamada, Instagram @nialyte and @ shin_koyamada. For interviews and media inquiries, contact Kelly Bennett at Bennett Unlimited PR at (949) 463-6383 or Contact Details BENNETT UNLIMITED PR Kelly Bennett +1 949-463-6383 Company Website

May 05, 2021 02:02 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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ZOE Announces $53M Total Raise From Investors Including Fund Backed By Top Scientists, and Two-Time Super Bowl Champion Eli Manning


Healthcare science company ZOE announced today it has raised $53M in total funding to transform how individuals eat with a first-of-its-kind at-home test kit and personalized advice program. ZOE decodes each customer’s unique biological responses to food, and guides them on how to eat to maximize long-term health. The program uses machine learning combined with the world’s largest nutrition research studies. These funds will allow ZOE to meet the dramatic rise in customer demand since it launched a few months ago, and serve millions of people in search of a sustainable and science-backed approach to healthy eating. Addressing high rates of obesity, metabolic disease, and nutritional confusion, ZOE launched its first product in September 2020 after three years in stealth carrying out the world’s largest in-depth nutrition and microbiome study with scientists from Harvard, King’s College London, Mass General Hospital and Stanford. The test kit analyzes users’ gut health, as well as blood fat and blood sugar responses to food and uses these insights to provide daily, personalized nutrition guidance. Demand is high and ZOE is currently in waitlist-mode. Interim clinical trial results reveal participants experienced more energy (90%), felt less hunger (80%) and lost an average of 11 pounds after three months of following their personalized plan. Today’s B round of over $20M brings cash on the balance sheet to $40M. This round of financing is led by Ahren Innovation Capital (“Ahren”), whose Science Partners include two Nobel laureates. Sir Gregory Winter CBE FRS FMedSci and Nobel Prize winner for Chemistry said: “We were interested both by the approach taken by ZOE, in which they are applying machine learning to large scale population data, and by their published results, in which they are mapping out associations between diet, health and the gut microbiome.” Additional participants in this financing include two-time Super Bowl Champion and MVP Eli Manning, two-time Super Bowl Champion and award-winning sportscaster Ositadimma "Osi" Umenyiora, Accomplice (the fund behind AngelList, DraftKings, PillPack, and WHOOP), THVC and Daphni. Umenyiora said, “I'm really excited to invest in ZOE. As an athlete, I know how much eating the right food changes how I feel and how I perform.” The funds from the investment will be used to speed up the rollout of the ZOE program. Currently, the program is only available in the US, but a launch is intended in the UK in 2021 and further geographies in 2022. ZOE is continuing to hire rapidly, including in engineering and science, where its expertise spans from microbiome and nutrition to metabolic research and machine learning. Commenting on the investment, George Hadjigeorgiou, co-founder and President of ZOE, said: "We started ZOE because we believe that everyone has a right to understand how their body responds to food so they can make their own decisions and be in control of their health. We are thrilled to be partnering with a distinguished group of new and existing investors to continue on our mission to help people live healthier and happier lives.” “After 4 years of research and results published in the world’s leading medical journals, we are delighted to accelerate the launch of the ZOE program because we believe people need our help,” said Jonathan Wolf, co-founder and CEO of ZOE. “Ahren Innovation Capital, Eli Manning and Osi Umenyiora’s backing of ZOE further validates the belief held by leaders across diverse industries that we can have a powerful impact on our health through in-depth, personalized insights into our biology.” Science Supported with Multiple Papers Published in Top Peer-Reviewed Journals Experiencing rapid revenue growth and forecasting double-digit millions of revenue in its first year of sales, ZOE uses a data-driven approach to tackling global health issues. The company combines artificial intelligence, digital technologies and collaboration with world-leading scientists. ZOE’s research has led to over a dozen peer reviewed studies in high impact journals over the last year, including multiple papers in leading science journals such as Nature Medicine. In March 2020 at the onset of the pandemic, the ZOE team felt compelled to help and responded by developing and launching an app in just four sleepless days and nights, built on their existing technologies. The free ZOE Covid Study app, which is a non-profit initiative, now has more than 4.5M users across the UK, US and Sweden, calculating levels of COVID in real-time and sharing anonymous data with researchers across the world. Scientists working with ZOE have published dozens of scientific papers as a result, from understanding COVID symptoms to data on vaccine effectiveness and COVID’s long-term effects. Long-term, ZOE intends to use the app to support wider public health initiatives. About ZOE ZOE is a healthcare science company helping people understand their body’s responses to food. By using machine learning combined with large scale human studies, ZOE is decoding the impact of nutrition on health. ZOE leads the PREDICT Studies and the ZOE COVID Study, which are the world’s largest community powered research programs of their kind in nutrition and COVID-19 respectively. Located in London and Boston, ZOE was founded by Professor Tim Spector of King’s College London, data science leader Jonathan Wolf and entrepreneur George Hadjigeorgiou. ZOE was named one of the Deloitte Fast 50 Rising Stars in 2019 for the company’s contribution to science enabled by technology and machine learning. For more information on ZOE’s mission and science, visit Recently Published Nutrition Studies Postprandial glycaemic dips predict appetite and energy intake in healthy individuals, Nature Metabolism,April 12, 2021 Microbiome connections with host metabolism and habitual diet from 1,098 deeply phenotyped individuals, Nature Medicine, January 11, 2021 Human postprandial responses to food and potential for precision nutrition, Nature Medicine, June 11, 2020 About Ahren Innovation Capital Ahren Innovation Capital is an investment institution that supports transformational companies at the intersection of deep tech and deep science that will penetrate, or create, massive markets. Ahren is a unique partnership of investment talent and best-in-class commercial scientists whose technologies are today valued in excess of $100BN combined. Ahren believes in taking asymmetric, considered, risk that will deliver superior rewards – capturing a generational opportunity to provide smart capital to deep technology. With a philosophy espousing the importance of relationships and trust, Ahren provides both patient and active capital to exceptional founders and teams, empowering them to succeed. For more information on Ahren Innovation Capital, visit Contact Details ZOE Fiana Tulip +1 817-691-3031 Company Website

May 04, 2021 07:53 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Mother’s Day Got You Stumped?: Thoughtful Gifts for Every Type of Mom


A video accompanying this announcement is available at: With Mother’s Day right around the corner the clock is ticking to get every mom in your life a gift. Not just a gift, the best gift. For many consumers, the coronavirus has put a spotlight on opportunities to celebrate and show their loved ones they care. In fact, 78 percent say that celebrating Mother’s Day is important to them this year, given the current state of the pandemic. And this sentiment shows up in spending plans as well: On average, consumers say they plan to spend $205 on cards, special meals and other gifts for mom, approximately $8 more than last year. Now is the time to plan and to find out what the best gifts are for the mother in your life. Lifestyle Expert, Alle Fister, makes her top picks: How to be smart with your spending: Mom would definitely want you to spend wisely. So, make sure it is something she’d love and if you find the perfect gift, use financial sense and split your payments up with Afterpay. They are the leader in Buy Now, Pay Later payments, and partner with thousands of brands and retailers to offer interest-free installment payments to shoppers. With Afterpay, you can get the perfect gift for Mom right away but pay for it over time by breaking up the cost into four equal installments. Shoppers can refer to Afterpay's Shop Directory at or through its app to browse all of their brand partners across both e-commerce and in-store. Right now, there's even a section dedicated to Mother's Day to make gift giving with Afterpay even easier. Instagram - @afterpayusa Creating memorable experiences for mom: Some moms want nothing more than to enjoy memorable experiences with their families. Show mom the at-home mixologist skills you've picked up during the pandemic by creating her a signature drink. Create a spicy margarita cocktail for mom using 21Seeds Cucumber Jalapeno tequila. 21Seeds is a female founded, award winning, real fruit infused tequila with three infusions – Cucumber Jalapeno, Grapefruit Hibiscus and Valencia Orange - that are easy to drink and perfect for a low-calorie cocktail. Working with the most celebrated female owned distillery in Jalisco, Mexico, 21Seeds makes celebrating women a core value. Teach mom how to craft cocktails like a mixologist and she’ll be able to impress her friends and family with a great tasting cocktail anytime. 21Seeds is available in most states across the country. Depending on the state, consumers can find 21Seeds at Target, Amazon Fresh, Walmart, and through delivery services including Drizly and Caskers. For cocktail recipes please visit: Facebook - @21Seeds Instagram - @21seeds #girlscalltheshots Health and beauty for mom: Moms need some TLC. We’ve all been through a lot and mothers tend to carry a bigger burden. Help her take care of mind, body and spirit with things she’ll find joyful. Delicious food, sparkly things and high quality skin care products that are truly a joy to apply. Josie Maran is known for clean, healthy and effective formulas containing 100% Pure Argan Oil. Their bestsellers that are perfect for mom are their light as a cloud Whipped Argan Oil Body Butter and Face Butter which is like self-joy in a jar because they are so lovely to apply. They are incredibly hydrating, great for all skin types, even sensitive skin, and come in a number of yummy natural scents like Sweet Citrus and Vanilla Bean. You can get your Josie Maran Whipped Argan Oil Body Butter & Face Butter at your local Sephora and Ulta stores as well as online. Fun fact - the body butter is so popular, one jar is sold every 14 seconds! & Instagram: @JosieMaran Facebook: Josie Maran Twitter: @Josie_Maran If you are lucky enough to get together with your loved ones, every mom wants to snap a photo to remember this special day…so why not look polished without even trying. Pamper mom with a product from Indeed Labs called Bakuchiol. These pads are a natural power alternative to retinol and are safe for any expecting mothers out there. Just a terrific way to prep your skin. They are a quick and easy way to keep your skin even, clear and radiant. Helps with signs on aging with the swipe of the pad. This product is available at Ulta or the Indeed Labs website. @IndeedLabs And finally, a great product on the go that is both cruelty free and vegan is this new addition to Ciaté London’s best selling Dewy range: Dewy Skin Say goodbye to matte make-up and hello to glowing skin. Versatile and semi-sheer skin tint for a glossy, dewy base for the ultimate lit-from-within glow You can put this on with a makeup brush or sponge and what I love about it is that its formulated with beneficial skincare ingredients like Vitamin C for brightening this product offers 12-hour hydration and glow that never has to go. This range is available at Sephora or Ciate’s US website. @CiateLondon About YourUpdateTV: YourUpdateTV is a social media video portal for organizations to share their content.. It includes separate channels for Health and Wellness, Lifestyle, Media and Entertainment, Money and Finance, Social Responsibility, Sports and Technology. Contact Details YourUpdateTV +1 212-736-2727

May 03, 2021 03:00 PM Eastern Daylight Time

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Seen #TeacherTok? Osmo For Schools Gifts 4 Lucky Teachers $500 Gift Cards For TikTok Videos, For National Teacher Appreciation Week

Osmo for Schools

Osmo for Schools, a division of Tangible Play, Inc., focuses on building in-classroom usage of Osmo’s award-winning educational systems. Using proprietary AI technology, these systems help teachers foster collaboration, communication, creativity, critical thinking, and increased engagement in learning, in students. Osmo is used in more than 30,000 schools in North America. Tangible Play is headquartered in Palo Alto, California. For more information about Osmo for Schools and its products, visit Osmo for Schools, the educational division of Tangible Play, Inc. and part of the award-winning consumer STEAM brand Osmo, announces it has selected 4 lucky teachers on TikTok to each receive a $500 gift card, for their creative and inspiring videos, in honor of National Teacher Appreciation Week (May 1-7, 2021). “Throughout this past year, we were thrilled to see so many teachers who used their creativity to the max to get kids to learn during this challenging time, and we loved the heartwarming videos they posted on social media, to tell the world what they did and how,” says Jan Richards, head of education sales and marketing at Osmo for Schools, which promotes in-classroom usage of Osmo’s tools and recently received the 2021 EdTech Award for Curriculum and Instruction Solution. “We laughed a lot when the videos were funny, admired their dedication, and got inspired by so many. Osmo for Schools selected 4 teachers who present themselves as heroes going the extra mile during the pandemic.” The 4 winning teachers are: Tristan Campbell @trissssss10 Clamentia Hall, Jr. @mrclementineteach Mandy Curley @mandycurley1 Claudine James @iamthatenglishteacher Says kindergarten teacher Clamentia Hall, Jr., “Osmo has taken educational technology and teacher appreciation to an unprecedented level! It has been an absolute pleasure to share a bit of humor and joy with educators who could use a little morale boost. Osmo has affirmed that educators everywhere deserve an incredible amount of appreciation for the hard work they do.” On July 1, 2021, Osmo for Schools, in partnership with Osmo Cares, the charitable arm of Osmo, will begin accepting applications for its first-ever mini-grant consisting of $2000 worth of Osmo for Schools’ educational technology. A total of 20 in-kind, mini-grants will be awarded to U.S. public schools in time for the fall semester. The mini-grant is intended to help schools which lack needed funding to purchase educational technology. Mini-grant recipients, who will be announced Aug. 9, 2021, will be able to choose from a selection of Osmo for Schools products; only one recipient will be selected per school. Schools must already have appropriate tablets on hand, or a plan to purchase tablets--they are not included. For further details about the mini-grant and application process, visit here: About Osmo for Schools Osmo for Schools, a division of Tangible Play, Inc., focuses on building in-classroom usage of Osmo’s award-winning educational systems. Using proprietary AI technology, these systems help teachers foster collaboration, communication, creativity, critical thinking, and increased engagement in learning, in students. Osmo is used in more than 30,000 schools in North America. Tangible Play is headquartered in Palo Alto, California. For more information about Osmo for Schools and its products, visit Contact Details Carolyn Kamii PR +1 310-251-0550 Company Website

May 03, 2021 04:00 AM Pacific Daylight Time

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Spring into Action! Leading Veterinarian Offers 6 Tips to Get Dogs Ready for Warm Weather Activities


With warmer weather upon us, it’s time to get our canine companions safely ready for outdoor exercise. Before including four-legged best friends on a strenuous jaunt, it’s important to thoughtfully work up to it. Veterinarian Dr. Craig Prior, B.V.Sc., C.V.J., member of YuMOVE veterinary advisory board has some simple but important advice for dog owners to minimize injuries and maximize health benefits for you and your dog. Start with a general health checkup - Dogs can’t talk so veterinary expertise is key. A simple wellness check can help to spot issues and address changes that may have taken place over the winter, the pandemic and all of our inactive time at home. Slow and steady wins the race – Be thoughtful about how much you are asking of your dog if they haven’t been that active. Start with short 15-minute neighborhood walks before more strenuous activity. Work your way up to lengthier and more vigorous play and exercise. Look for signs of stiff joints – Walking differently, struggling to stand after lying down or resting, or a reduced desire to play can be signs of stiffness which is common especially as dogs age. A quality supplement can help, but it’s important to do your homework as there are many options out there. Choose one that is clinically proven, offers a money-back guarantee, has quality ingredients and is backed by real science. In addition to glucosamine and chondroitin, look for green-lipped mussels as recent research supports how effective they are for joint health. Be realistic about your dog’s weight –More than half of dogs in the US are obese, according to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention. Most owners don’t recognize that a healthy dog can look “skinny”. That extra weight makes it more difficult for dogs to get the exercise they need and puts extra strain on their joints. Consult with your veterinarian for a weigh-in and any changes you may need to make in their diet, so exercise doesn’t damage joints. A carefully planned exercise/play routine is crucial to helping get your pets weight back down, especially as we emerge from lockdown. Age matters- As dogs age, they are more at risk for joint problems. This is especially prevalent among larger breeds. This can also be caused by repetitive stress or prior injuries. Be careful about jumping in and out of cars and consider ramps or stairs. Early signs can be hard to notice so it’s important to get your dog checked regularly by a veterinarian. Be patient – Getting back into shape doesn’t happen overnight! Just like humans, each dog will vary in response to losing some unnecessary pounds or getting back into a more vigorous routine. Interviews, additional veterinarian advice and supporting documentation available upon request. For more information on hip/joint health, senior dogs, and keeping pets active for life, please visit About YuMOVE YuMOVE, is clinically proven and the #1 hip/joint supplement in the UK now available in the US. YuMOVE is on a mission to keep pets ‘active for life’ which is why they are committed to making the best joint support products in the world. Packed with unique ActivEase® Green Lipped Mussels, sustainably sourced from select New Zealand bays, YuMOVE is full of antioxidants and Omega 3. Its unique premium formula aids joint development supports active joints and structure and promotes mobility. About Lintbells Lintbells, the UK's #1 Vet Recommended Dog Joint Supplement company, currently helps more than 1 million dogs across Europe and the United States. In March 2019, Lintbells officially entered the US Market with the introduction of their most popular product abroad, YuMOVE Soft Chews. This joint supplement promotes joint and cartilage health in dogs of all breeds and sizes. Made from all-natural, human-grade, non-GMO ingredients, the secret to YuMOVE Soft Chews' success comes from Lintbells own ActivEase® Green Lipped Mussel (or GLM). GLM, a superfood derived from the purest sources in New Zealand, is an essential ingredient with extraordinary properties that improves joint function, mobility, and reduces discomfort in our dogs. This unique ingredient, rich with more Omega 3s than any other GLM, is naturally anti-inflammatory, meaning dogs' stiff joints are eased naturally. Contact Details The Impetus Agency Jamie Baxter +1 775-322-4022 Company Website

May 03, 2021 06:20 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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Comcast Launches Additional 44 WiFi-Connected “Lift Zones” in Twin Cities

Comcast Twin Cities

As part of its ongoing commitment to help connect low-income families to the Internet so they can fully participate in educational opportunities and the digital economy, Comcast today announced it has equipped 44 additional locations in the Twin Cities with WiFi-connected “Lift Zones” bringing the total to 74. Working with its network of nonprofit partners, Comcast is providing robust WiFi hotspots in safe spaces designed to help students get online, participate in distance learning and do their homework. This initiative provides free connectivity inside partner community centers for the next three years. “We are so pleased to be the recipients of Comcast’s Lift Zone Wi-Fi connectivity in our recreation centers and other park facilities,” said Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board Superintendent Al Bangoura. “As we move toward re-opening more recreation centers for safe in-person programming, we are looking forward to providing programs that support youth in doing their schoolwork, facilitate work readiness training, and invite families in to access virtual activities and information.” “We are proud to partner with community organizations across the Twin Cities and equip them with free internet service that will provide kids with safe, fast and reliable connectivity to keep up with school and prepare for a brighter future,” said J.D. Keller, regional senior vice president, Comcast Twin Cities. “The COVID-19 crisis continues to put many low-income students at risk of being left behind, accelerating the need for comprehensive digital equity and internet adoption programs to support them. We hope these Lift Zones will help those students who, for a variety of reasons, are unable to connect to effective distance learning at home.” Some of the new Twin Cities community organizations that have established Lift Zones in their respective facilities include 40 Minneapolis Parks & Rec locations and Face to Face in St. Paul. A full list of new Comcast Lift Zones can be found here. In March, Comcast announced a $1 billion commitment over ten years in continued support of digital equity, including its Lift Zones initiative, which aims to establish WiFi-connected safe spaces in 1,000+ community centers nationwide for students and adults by the end of 2021. Lift Zones complement Comcast’s Internet Essentials program, which has helped connect a cumulative total of 10 million low-income people to the Internet at home since 2011, including more than 272,000 Minnesotans. About Comcast Corporation Comcast Corporation (Nasdaq: CMCSA) is a global media and technology company that connects people to moments that matter. We are principally focused on broadband, aggregation, and streaming with over 56 million customer relationships across the United States and Europe. We deliver broadband, wireless, and video through our Xfinity, Comcast Business, and Sky brands; create, distribute, and stream leading entertainment, sports, and news through Universal Filmed Entertainment Group, Universal Studio Group, Sky Studios, the NBC and Telemundo broadcast networks, multiple cable networks, Peacock, NBCUniversal News Group, NBC Sports, Sky News, and Sky Sports; and provide memorable experiences at Universal Parks and Resorts in the United States and Asia. Visit for more information. Contact Details Comcast Jill Hornbacher +1 651-425-1695 Comcast Dave Nyberg +16513416401 Company Website

April 29, 2021 10:00 AM Central Daylight Time

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