Archive for August, 2010

Cherry on Top Award

I’ve been given my first blog award from the awesome AJL at NaterTot! Check her out.

The rules for accepting this award are:

1. Thank the person who gave this award to you. Thank you Amber!

2. Copy the award and put it on your blog. Here it is!

3. List three things that you love about yourself.

That I corrected this #3 sentence by replacing the word “which” with the word “that.”

That I am an overachiever.

That I always keep going.

4. Post a picture you love:

Having fun at our wedding!

5. Tag five people to whom you wish to pass this award. (I corrected this sentence as well; it previously ended with a preposition!)

The Farhake Fam: Musings on parenting and the adventures of a toddler.

HealthyHighway: Healthy Lifestyle Solutions for Living Your Optimum Life.

An Associate’s Mind: Law student blogger who provides advice from a thoughtful place on how succeed as a lawyer.

The Freelance Writing Gigs Network: A great blog that compiles lots of helpful information for freelance writers, including job posts.

Erika Dreifus. Self-described as “WRITER. READER. REVIEWER. RESOURCE MAVEN.,” she provides  great information on writing contests, jobs, and other opportunities for anyone who loves to write.


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Below is a great article by Barry Cross that I found at EzineArticles.com. I hope you find it helpful.

For those of you looking to have improved wellness in your life these healthy lifestyle tips will get you off to a great start. All it takes is some small consistent, disciplined daily changes and you can feel younger, have more energy and therefore lead a longer life that can be disease free.

~ Healthy Lifestyle Tips ~

1. Change your eating habits by ditching the fast food and junk food. Processed foods eaten consistently can lead to diabetes & other serious health complications. Eat more protein, low glycemic index fruit & vegetables plus drink lots of water every day. Its still ok to reward yourself with cheat meals/days occasionally.

2. Invest in some quality cellular nutrition supplements. These are anti aging and give your body the anti oxidants, vitamins, minerals & phytonutrients it needs to function properly. Energy boosting too!

3. Start to make moves by quitting those bad vices like smoking, drugs and alcohol. We all like a drink occasionally but moderation is the key word here. Long term these vices can kill you and if they don’t your quality of life can suffer.

4. Exercise your body on a regular, consistent basis. Daily if possible & you must do something you enjoy otherwise you won’t keep it up long term.

5. Visit your doctor every year for a medical check up. Prevention is better than cure.

6. Associate and mix with positive, healthy people. This will rub off on you and its a great support network when you all live the healthy lifestyle together.

7. Use positive affirmations several times per day to keep your sub conscious mind focused and remove negativity.

8. Have a good balance between work and play. Make time to relax and enjoy yourself with family and friends. Too much work creates stress and this can lead to disease & illness in your body.

9. Love yourself. Its important to love yourself & take time to do things for you as well. If you don’t love yourself how can you love others?

10. Enjoy your job. Job satisfaction has to be a major priority if you are to live a healthy life. Find something you are passionate about and look to do that as a job, it then doesn’t feel like you are working.

Start to apply some of these healthy lifestyle tips today and gradually over time include more and more into your daily life. You’ll be amazed at how better you will feel both mentally and physically.

Learn more at HealthyLifestyleTips.

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Okay, so this post is slightly off-topic and really only for the ladies, but it can fit within a healthy lifestyle choice category. I once had a friend whose mother said “Looking good is better than feeling good!” I don’t know if I would go THAT far, but thinking that you look good is part of feeling good, so here is a great post at Shine on How to Revamp Your Style.

Joanna Douglas tells us how to know if we need a style update and then what simple things we can do about it. She gives great tips on revamping your hairstyle, your makeup, and your wardrobe. For example, lots of women seem to think that long hair makes them look younger, but that is not always the case, especially if you haven’t gotten your hair cut in a long time and it is starting to look a little scraggly and limp.

Go out and be fabulous!


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Food Storage Guidelines

Ever wondered how long you can keep those leftovers in the fridge and still eat them safely? Or maybe you’ve had a can of green beans in your pantry for a long time, and you wonder how long is too long for canned goods? Here are Food Storage Guidelines that detail everything you need to know. There are several pages on how to keep your pantry the best for storage as well as how cold to keep your refrigerator. Then there are pages of information on how long you can store just about any food item, either in the pantry or in the fridge.

Courtesy of Photos8.com

For example, you can keep a jar of opened salsa in the refrigerator for 1-2 months, and if you haven’t opened it yet, you can keep it in the pantry for 12-18 months. And celery will keep for a week in the fridge, provided that you put it in the crisper. But leftover pieces of cooked chicken should only be kept for 1-2 days.

The goal is to not be wasteful but also be safe.


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I posted a link to the Circle of Life last August. It’s a little exercise to help you see where your life may be out of balance. You rate how content you are with various parts of your life including your relationships, health, career, and finances. Then you connect the dots. The goal is to have a circle of life, as opposed to a triangle or a square or some other random shape. Try it and use it as a starting point to make positive changes in your life. I think it is important to re-evaluate at least once a year to ensure that you are on track with what you want your life to be, so here it is again.


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I love my coffee. No sweetener, just a little milk, so I can really taste and savor the flavor of the beans. Yummy! I do not want to cut all caffeine from my diet, and I certainly do not want to give up my coffee. Nevertheless, it is important to remember that too much caffeine is not good for us. And for some people who are particularly sensitive to it, caffeine is a no-no, even in low doses. Below are the top ten caffeine related health problems, as explained by the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and adapted from Caffeine Blues by Stephen Cherniske.

1. Cardiovascular Problems

Caffeine Blues at Amazon.com

Caffeine increases your heart rate, elevates your blood pressure, and can contribute to the development of heart disease. Both decaf and regular coffee increase your cholesterol and homocysteine, the biochemical that science has linked to increased risk for heart attack. Caffeine is also linked to coronary vasospasms, the cause for 20% of all fatal heart attacks which kill otherwise perfectly healthy people.

2. Stress

Caffeine stimulates the excretion of stress hormones, which can produce increased levels of anxiety, irritability, muscular tension and pain, indigestion, insomnia, and decreased immunity. Increased levels of stress can keep you from making healthy responses to normal daily stress.

3. Emotional Disturbances

Anxiety and irritability are hallmark mood disturbances associated with caffeine consumption, but equally important is depression and attention disorders. Depression may occur as part of the let down after the stimulant effects of caffeine wear off. It may also appear during the recovery period after quitting caffeine while the brain’s chemistry is readjusted. Caffeine, rather than increasing mental activity, actually decreases blood flow to the brain by as much as 30% and negatively effects memory and mental performance.

4. Blood Sugar Swings

Diabetics and hypoglycemics should avoid caffeine. Caffeine stimulates a temporary surge in blood sugar followed by an overproduction of insulin causing a blood sugar crash within hours. This rollercoaster causes weight gain since insulin’s message to the body is to store excess sugar as fat.

5. Gastrointestinal Problems

Many people experience a burning sensation in their stomach after drinking coffee because coffee increases the secretion of hydrochloric acid leading to an increased risk for ulcers. Coffee, including decaf, reduces pressure on the valve between the esophagus and the stomach so that the highly acidic contents of the stomach pass up to the esophagus leading to heartburn and gastro-esophageal reflux disease. No wonder the best selling over-the-counter drugs are the so-called antacids.

6. Nutritional Deficiencies

Caffeine inhibits the absorption of some nutrients and causes the urinary excretion of calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron and trace minerals, and all essential elements necessary for good health.

7. Male Health Problems

Milton Krisiloff, M.D. has found that in the majority of cases, men can significantly reduce their risk for urinary and prostate problems by making dietary changes, which include eliminating coffee and caffeine.

8. Female Health Problems

Fibrocystic breast disease, PMS, osteoporosis, infertility problems, miscarriage, low birth weight infants, and menopausal problems such as hot flashes are all exacerbated by caffeine consumption. Women on birth control pills are particularly at risk since they have a decreased ability to detoxify caffeine.

9. Aging

Many people find in there forties that they can no longer tolerate the same level of caffeine consumption as they could in there 20’s and 30’s. Production of DHEA, melatonin, and other vital hormones decline and caffeine speeds up that downhill drop. Caffeine dehydrates the body and contributes to aging of skin and kidneys. It has been shown to inhibit DNA repair and slow the ability of the liver to detoxify foreign toxins.

10. Adrenal Exhaustion

Caffeine consumption leads to eventual adrenal exhaustion, which can leave you vulnerable to a variety of health disorders related to inflammation, autoimmunity, and fatigue.


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As you’ve no doubt heard, over 1300 people have gotten sick with Salmonella from tainted eggs? Do you need to throw out all the eggs you have in your fridge and swear them off for months to come? No. Let’s not overreact. Granted, Salmonella is serious stuff, but you really need to know only two things to keep yourself and your family safe.

1. Know which eggs have been recalled. There is a list of all brands and the affected dates at the Egg Safety Center. If you don’t have these brands with these “julian dates” then you are probably safe.

But what if they find more tainted eggs and I eat them before they know they are tainted, you may be thinking.

That leads me to the second thing you need to know to stay safe.

2. Fully cooked eggs don’t make you sick. Even if they have Salmonella in them, when you cook them fully, it kills the Salmonella. So only hard-boiled eggs, over-well fried eggs, and fully scrambled eggs for all of us for the time being.

There’s more good information at the Eating Well blog post 5 Things You Should Know About the Egg Recall.

Don’t cut eggs out of your diet. They are high in protein and choline and good for you!


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Can money buy happiness? It all depends on how well-off you consider yourself, and how you spend the cash. Debra Cassens Weiss discusses the topic at ABAJournal.com. Her article is directed toward lawyers, but the concepts apply to everyone. She writes:

“Once you make more than $50,000 a year, there’s little relationship between income and satisfaction, according to University of Missouri law professors Nancy Levit and Douglas Linder. Instead, they say, the key is “the joy of downward comparison,” the Am Law Daily reports in a review of the professors’ new book,The Happy Lawyer.

NYTimes.com article "But Will It Make You Happy?"

People are more contented when they frame their success in terms of how well off they are when compared with others, Linder and Levit write. They explain with an example plucked from the Olympics. Bronze medalists report more happiness than silver medalists, because the third-place winners are just happy to be on the winner’s podium. Silver medalists, on the other hand, compare themselves to the gold medal winners, and they are less happy.

The book outlines other factors that help boost happiness. According to the book review, they include having some control over your life, stable relationships, congruence between values and work, job security, and work-life balance.”

Ms. Weiss also discusses a recent article in the New York Times, “But Will It Make You Happy?” She posits:

“[T]he New York Times recently turned to the subject of how spending your money influences happiness. According to the newspaper, new research shows that ‘people are happier when they spend money on experiences instead of material objects, when they relish what they plan to buy long before they buy it, and when they stop trying to outdo the Joneses.’

A University of Wisconsin professor, Thomas DeLeire, studied nine categories of consumption and found only one had a positive effect on happiness: vacations, entertainment, sports and equipment like golf clubs and fishing poles. According to the newspaper, spending on leisure and services tends to strengthen social bonds, which in turn makes people happier.

University of Illinois psychology professor Ed Diener put the research to use when he and his wife bought a new home, he explained in an e-mail interview with the Times. The couple saw several homes with appealing features.

‘One home was close to hiking trails, making going hiking very easy,’ Diener said. ‘Thinking about the research, I argued that the hiking trails could be a factor contributing to our happiness, and we should worry less about things like how pretty the kitchen floor is or whether the sinks are fancy. We bought the home near the hiking trail and it has been great, and we haven’t tired of this feature because we take a walk four or five days a week.'”

Do spend your money in a way that will make you happy?


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The HealthyHighway blog has a great post that dispels 8 common myths about dehydration, including that 64 ounces a day is all we need. The post also advises that you can get your hydration from foods that contain water, not just from fluids, and discusses many other important aspects of hydration.


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Tired of hearing about all the things you CAN’T eat if you are trying to lose weight. Well, here’s one that you CAN eat: fiber. Studies show that adding fiber to your diet may help you lose weight. Not only does it make you feel full faster and longer,  it also helps your digestive system work more efficiently, both of which are good for your health and weight loss.

Courtesy of Photos8.com

Eating Well has several articles with great, high-fiber, simple recipes. Here are a few:

Grab & Go High Fiber Breakfasts

Fiber Rich Recipes to Help You Lose Weight

Boost Fiber to Slim Down


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