9.19.2019

3 Tips that Will Help You to Get a Better Night’s Sleep


Do you experience trouble sleeping? Getting enough sleep is just as important as maintaining a
healthy diet and exercising regularly. A lack of sleep can have all kinds of negative effects on our
health and can lead to hormone irregularities, weight gain, and increased risk of disease.
However, there are ways to improve your chances of enjoying a good night’s sleep. Let’s discover 3
tips that will help you to sleep better at night.

Establish a Bedtime Routine
Daily routines provide much needed structure and discipline in our lives. Adhering to a sleep
schedule can help to regulate your body’s clock by programming the brain to get used to a routine.
Make sure to set aside between six to eight hours for sleeping depending on your individual needs.

Consistency is the key to reinforcing your sleep cycle, so aim to go to bed and wake up at the same
time every day. Limit the difference in your sleep schedule between weekdays and weekends to no
more than an hour. Research consistently shows that irregularities in your sleep pattern can be
linked to higher risk of obesity, hypertension and developing heart disease so try not to vary bed and
wake times too much.

Work at Winding Down
In the modern world, many of use lead stressful lives. Demands at work and home can make it
difficult to relax, but there are ways to help you to get a more restful night of sleep. A warm bath can
help your body to reach a temperature that is optimal for rest. Additionally, some people find
reading a book or listening to the radio can distract an anxious mind. Our mental health is closelytied to our quality of sleep, so if you feel stressed in the evening, it can be helpful to journal your
thoughts and write down to do lists so that you can organise your life.
If possible, try to avoid any vigorous exercise in the evening, however light yoga stretches can be
beneficial by relaxing your muscles. Furthermore, blue light emitted by electronic devices such as
televisions, computers and smartphones can trick your bodily rhythm into believing it is still daytime,
so stop using these types of technology up to two hours before heading to bed. Caffeine can stay in
your blood for between 6-8 hours so avoid large amounts of tea or coffee after 4pm.

Optimise Your Bedroom for Sleep
Your bedroom can have a huge impact on your quality of sleep. Noise, external lights and
temperature are all distractions that can seriously hamper your chances of drifting off. Make sure
your bedroom is quiet by minimising external noise and reduce any unwanted brightness by
removing any artificial lights. Although during the summertime it can be more difficult to regulate
the temperature of your bedroom, studies show that temperatures of approximately 20°C are more
conducive to better quality of sleep.

Sleep experts claim there is a strong association in people’s minds between sleep and the bedroom.
Electronic gadgets, outside noise, and an uncomfortable mattress or bed can all weaken this link, so
if any of these distractions are identifiably preventing you from getting enough sleep, it is in your
best interests to do something about them. Eliminating any unnecessary gadgets and technology
from the bedroom, investing in some earplugs, and testing out a new bed or mattress can help you
to find a solution that works.

Most people experience an occasional sleepless night. Adopting habits that encourage better sleep is
all about creating a comfortable environment and keeping on top of any worries or anxieties. As
with anything health related, if you have persistent trouble sleeping, it might be time to contact your
doctor. Identifying and treating any underlying causes of insomnia can help you to drift off more
easily. Practicing self-care is all about finding time to recenter and recharge so that you can focus on
being present and mindful. For more sleeping tips, you can check out this article here.

9.18.2019

Easy Ways To Future Proof Your Health

Are you concerned about what the future holds? Maybe you just want to make sure that you look after your health in the best way possible. Either way, if you make the right changes now then you can easily benefit yourself for years to come.
Resistance Training
When you get to the age of 40, you’ll lose muscle every single year. This will in turn, slow down your metabolism and it will also weaken your muscle structure too. Weightlifting really is your friend here. Consider trying low-intensity movements and also try and do a lot of reps too. This will really help you to tone up and it will also help you to maintain your strength as much as possible. When working out, you need to try and do everything to limit burnout as this will slow your results.
Yoga
One of the biggest mistakes that people make when they are younger is neglecting mobility. You may sit at your desk for hours on end and this can have a detrimental impact on your health overall. One way for you to try and combat this would be for you to try and do as much yoga as possible. Start out doing a class once a week and then gradually increase it. You can also try varying exercises too, as this will help you to increase the intensity without putting too much strain on your body. If you don’t feel as though yoga is for you then why not look into Pilates?

Low-Intensity Cardio
Low-intensity cardio is a big game-changer. Consider investing in a fitness app so you can track your heartbeat, and also try and go out on runs too. You don’t need to push yourself too hard here, in fact, if you do then you may be limiting the amount of workouts you can do a week. The best thing about low-intensity exercise is that it gives you results, and it can also be a fantastic stress-buster.
Visit your GP
Regular check-ups are so important. This is especially the case if you feel as though something is wrong, for example, if you have a diminished level of hearing. If that’s the case then click here to get some support. Of course, by visiting your GP on a regular basis, you’ll be able to get your blood pressure checked and you’ll also be able to find out if there are any dietary changes you need to make.
Stay Hydrated
Hydration is so important for the body. It helps you to flush toxins and it also helps your joints to stay lubricated too. Another bonus of staying hydrated is that it can reduce inflammation while supporting your metabolism. If you are having a hard time staying hydrated because you are constantly busy at work, then consider taking a flask of water with some lemon or even lime wedges. This will encourage you to drink more and you won’t have to go to the vending machine either. Another bonus of this is that you can try all different combinations of flavour to see which one you like the best.



9.16.2019

Money and Energy saving hacks for heating/cooling your home


There’s nothing more frustrating when trying to save money than getting your energy bill in the mail every month. There in your hand you hold the cold hard evidence of your kids leaving the door front open practically all winter long and the time your husband left the windows open when you were running the AC…for a week. Even the months when it comes and it’s fairly normal, it can be frustrating to be paying for cooling your home when it’s really that hot out to begin with and your house is just warm because there’s no trees to shade it. Whatever the reason, a high energy bill isn’t fun to deal with for you or your budget. If you’re looking to save money or trying to stick to a stricter budget, try some of these energy saving hacks to heat or cool your home and save money in the process.

  1. Keep the lights off in the Summer for Double the Savings.
We all know that you’re supposed to turn lights off when you leave a room in order to save on electricity, however, if you’re running your AC in the summer and leaving unnecessary lights on, you’re working against yourself—double time! The lights will artificially heat up the inside of your home, even by a few degrees, and kick that AC back on—costing you more money once again! Instead—take advantage of the added sunlight in the evenings and utilize the natural light afforded from outside. This way you’re saving on electricity and on your budget!
  1. Invest in a Draft Stopper.

This will be your new best friend year-round, regardless of the season or how hot or cold it is outside. What this does is stop drafts from coming in from under your entry door. This can be an issue with older entry doors that have begun to lag or ones that weren’t sealed or installed properly. You slide it under your door and the snug fit of the foam on both sides of the door keeps the draft from coming in and the air from getting out. This keeps your cool or warm air from escaping and keeps the cold or heat out of your home. The best part about this unique tool is that it’s actually very affordable. You can get one on amazon for less than 10 dollars. 

  1. Shop around for a high quality fan.

While you might be thinking “but that takes electricity!” and you’d be right, we are too, because if you’re running your AC all summer, chances are investing in a high quality fan will save you a lot of money in the long run. First, the key to this hack is getting a high-quality fan as usually cheap ones won’t be as energy efficient, won’t work as well, and will break before they pay for themselves in terms of your energy bill. However, by investing in a better quality of fan, they’ll suck-up a lot less energy than your AC, be powerful enough to cool your home to the temp you’d like, and last for years to come to continually provide you savings on your energy bill.

  1. Replace your lightbulbs.
While reducing your overall electricity use will serve you best, sometimes well, it’s the 21st century and you need your lamps! By switching to a more energy efficient bulb you can reduce the amount of heat the bulb gives off and the amount of energy your light consumes by switching to a bulb that’s a CFL or LED. These types of bulbs, over traditional ones, can save you 25-80% of the energy consumed by your lights. While these bulbs do tend to cost slightly more than traditional ones, they also last anywhere from 3 to 25 times longer than your average bulb, meaning you’re replacing them far less often and actually saving money in the long term. 
  1. Replace your appliances with more energy efficient ones.
While this may not apply, or be a possibility, for everyone, this hack can save you a lot of money in the long-term, even if replacing appliances can be expensive. Older appliances tend to be huge energy sucks (and thus money sucks) as technology has become more and more energy efficient. As a kind of double whammy for your energy bill, the older an appliance gets, the more energy it tends to use too. So while new appliances may cost you more upfront, chances are they’re save you thousands in the long-run, especially if you’re current appliances are extremely old. 
  1. Replace your drafty windows.
While you might be thinking—"wait—I thought this was an article with ways to save money—not spend it!”—you’d be right—it is. But do you want to save 2 dollars in a month or 240 dollars in a year? The number one cause of energy inefficiency in homes is inefficient doors and windows.  Even if your windows seals are holding up well, older windows usually don’t have the triple-pane glass technology that can really make a huge difference when it comes down to your energy bill. Replacing your windows or any part of the fenestration system in your home can be costly but it’s a price that will pay off in the long term. Most quality windows come with lifetime warranties and are good for 30 or more years, minimum! 

No matter the route you take to reduce your energy consumption (and your energy bill), you’ll likely see some improvement. Now if only you could get your kids to shut the door behind them when they enter or leave the house…that would really reduce that bill!

9.10.2019

Improve the taste of any meal

If you are something of a keen amateur chef and you would like to know how to make better meals, there are plenty of ways you can approach this issue. Even if you have already taken on board some of the skills that professional chefs might teach in books, there are probably always going to be other things you could be working on, in order to become an even better home cook. Improving the taste of any meal is something that can be surprisingly easy as long as you work at it, and as long as you have a good sense of what you might need to do. That requires some intuition, which is a result of experience via trial and error. But we can make it a little easier by looking at some of the tricks of the trade which anyone can take on board in the meantime.

Get Some Colour

One tip which you can apply to pretty much any meal you might choose to make at home is to try and introduce some colour into proceedings. This is based on the fact that caramelization always enhances the flavour of whatever you are cooking. This is true of any meat you might be cooking, as well as seafood, and of course many vegetables. But what is caramelization? Put simply, it is the process of cooking something until the exterior is a dark brown colour - or, in some cases, even black. Once you have got that colour, you know that the flavour of that ingredient will be richer and deeper, so it’s wise to almost always aim for it - unless your recipe happens to call for something else specifically.


Consider The Profile

You might have heard chefs talk about the flavour profile of a dish - but what does it mean, and how can you use it to make a tastier meal? Ultimately, this just refers to the overall variations and degrees of taste that a meal has, and it is something that you can only really work on in person by trialling different ingredients and so on. There are some tried and tested foods and ingredients which are always likely to work to enhance the profile, such as Tai Pei frozen foods, and it is wise to try those when you are a little stuck as to what to do.

Balance The Four Elements

It’s worth also getting to know some of the science of making delicious food. One concept in particular that you might want to think about for that purpose is the four cooking elements that you need to use and bring together in interesting ways. These four are: salt, fat, acid, and heat. The salt is a flavour booster, the fat is mostly the flavour itself, the acid provides an interesting offset for the usual savoury flavours, and the heat needs to be controlled to the right degree in order to bring all this together in the right way. If you can work on those in your kitchen, you will be creating much more delicious meals in no time.
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