Tuesday, February 24, 2009
You added fresh vegetables and fruits. You cut back on all the sugar and fried foods. You even gave up a lot of your caffeine and opted for health and sports drinks. You stopped eating fast food or ordering the greasy overloaded dinners at restaurants. You even carry your own home made lunch and snacks to work with you. You've changed the way you shop at the grocery store. Passing by the fatty foods and heading directly for the organic and fresh foods.
Then you started exercising. When you don't have time to go to a gym,or can't afford it, you started doing some isometrics at home and work. You take the stairs instead of the elevator. You park at the end of the parking lot and walk the distance.
But what have you done to make your home a healthier environment? Research states that the air in our homes is much worse than the air outside, and that's even if you live in the city where pollution runs rampant. What can cause the air in your house to be so bad. For one thing, it is the fact that the house is closed up all the time. You should open your windows once in awhile. Fresh air is wonderful for you. Of course if you do live in a congested area, and there is a smog problem, you will want to do it on a day when they determine that the air quality is up.
Your house should be aired out as often as possible. Even if you have central heat and air, all they are doing is circulating, cooling or heating the air that is already inside the house. That means that all the stuff in that air is getting recirculated all the time. If you have an attic exhaust fan, it would be great to turn that on when you are airing your house out.
Vinegar and water is great for washing your counter tops, rinsing your dishes and washing your floors. A little baking soda on a wet rag will work just like a cleanser will in the bathroom, and leave it smelling fresher. Some slices of lemon in the bottom of your trash container will help keep it smelling fresh.
Set house plants around in each room. They take in carbon monoxide and release oxygen. They are great to look at and at the same time help to clear your air. Keep litter boxes on the back porch, or in the basement.
healthy living & healthy food only can give you happy life..
Monday, February 23, 2009
Is it time for Bollywood -- as India's huge Mumbai-based film industry is called -- to come to America?
"International cinema comes in cycles in the United States," said Frank Lovece, a film critic with Film Journal International. "Now, it's Bollywood's time."
But "Slumdog" is a far cry from the lavish movie musicals made by Bollywood, which releases nearly 1,000 films annually. And it's not authentically Indian -- it was directed by Briton Danny Boyle, and the leading actor, Dev Patel, was born and raised in England.
However, the film is a celebration of India -- from the slums to the Taj Mahal. It pays homage to Bollywood by incorporating many of the industry's norms -- vibrant colors, fast-paced editing, a fairy-tale love story and a feel-good musical dance ending.
"Hindi film and Bollywood, in particular, is a profoundly political cinema about the crisis of the day," she said. "Today, the typical American feels like the poor in the world. ... This sense of vulnerability is what the film is able to capture."
Hollywood often has used international styles and filmmakers to its advantage. In its early days, the U.S. film capital embraced European directors such as Fritz Lang and Jean Renoir. The 1960s saw the influence of French New Wave cinema. Japanese films inspired "The Magnificent Seven" and "Star Wars"; Hong Kong works inspired Hollywood blockbusters such as "The Departed" and "The Matrix."
"Slumdog" isn't even the first film centering on India to attract Hollywood's attention
India's movie stars are essentially the country's ambassadors," said Gitesh Pandya, box-office analyst and founder of BoxOfficeGuru.com.
From Ray to Rai, Indian influence in American cinema is vast. Many Hollywood films also have been influenced by Bollywood. Baz Luhrman's 2001 musical "Moulin Rouge," a tragic romance told with song and dance, borrows heavily from Bollywood.
"These big, epic numbers are very reminiscent of Bollywood," Newman said, also referring to "Chicago," "Mama Mia!" and "West Side Story." "Musicals have always been part of the tradition of American cinema, and Bollywood really just took it to the next level."
Hollywood films such as 2008's "The Love Guru" and 2005's "The 40-Year-Old Virgin" --which ends with a musical dance number -- also borrow from Bollywood.
"India is still clinging on to its social values, which explains Bollywood's success everywhere but in America," she said. "Bollywood films don't have any kissing in them or tend not to. Warner Bros. used to make movies like this in the past. ... If it's ready to ready to return to its roots, then it's ready for Bollywood."
American audiences may want to explore Bollywood films after seeing "Slumdog Millionaire," Pandya said, but it is unlikely that they will find another film like it.
"The film is obviously very successful, but it is its own entity so it doesn't necessarily mean that people in this country will wake up to Bollywood overnight," he said. "Bollywood is not for everybody. ... People who love to see Adam Sandler movies are not going to line up to see Bollywood films."
Filmmakers have been enamored with Bollywood," he said. "They're investing over there, like [Steven] Spielberg." But in American cinema, "for the most part, there will be little tinges of Bollywood.
Elton John's Oscar party raises nearly $4 million
Elton John, in a show of gratitude, sang a couple of songs with the featured singer of evening Raphael Saadiq.
A good Hollywood party these days combines certain indispensable elements: a beautiful room filled with beautiful people, good food and drink, efficient valet parking -- and a cause.
At this year's Oscar parties, the cause element was especially important. (Oscar host Hugh Jackman wasn't the only entertainer who noticed that Oscar was throwing a glittering bash in hard times
Whether you're trying to channel the rumpled, Brit rock-star look (a la Chris Martin, perhaps), the David Beckham dad-on-the-go vibe (roomy jeans, work boots, white tee -- that expresses hip opinion -- and a toque) or the jet-set guy who toggles between tailored glamour and basketball-court casual (George Clooney, you middle-aged babe) -- it's about finding your footing and sticking with it. So if you feel like you're caught in a rut but still need to keep the budget in check -- accessorize. Man scarves, newsboy caps, aviators, vests -- anything that adds a guy-ish garnish will go a long way without looking like you're trying too hard. And remember to only rock one (maximum two) at a time. The best guy dressers keep it simple, slick and loaded with sex appeal.
Children with severe peanut allergies given small daily doses of peanut flour were able to build tolerance to the nuts, according to a study. The small trial aimed to slowly build immunity to peanuts in people with the common allergy, the team at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge said on Friday.
Keeping the good looks at all sizes
When large women walk into a clothing store, they generally don't expect to find something that fits them -- let alone something that is stylish and affordable. "Most large ladies simply can't find clothes in regular shops," says Jennifer Hill. "Most of the specialty stores get really expensive." This is why Hill decided to open the Sidney Fashion Exchange in Victoria. "As soon as we opened the doors we were busy . . . We have more than 900 consignors and the majority of our customers are regulars," she says. While plus-size fashion is on the rise -- with more designers expanding their size range and fashion maven Anna Wintour singing the industry praises --come by.
GQ’s Top 10 Most Stylish Men In America
1.Justin Timberlake (Pop Star, Actor, etc)
2.Mark Ronson (DJ, Producer)
3.Alexi Lubomirski (Photographer)
4.André Balazs (Hotelier, Scene Magnet)
5.Kanye West (Pop Musician, Aspiring Designer)
6.Sid Mashburn (and staff) (Haberdasher, Southern Gentleman)
7.T.I. (World-class MC)
8.Glenn O’Brien (GQ’s Style Guy)
9.Jason Schwartzman (Actor, Indie Rocker)
10.Ed Ruscha (and son, Eddie) (Artist, L.A. Icon
Do you agree with the list? Noticed now GQ consciously avoided picking other obvious names in the Hollywood and Music biz besides JT, Kanye and T.I.?
Sunday, February 22, 2009
The 19-year-old country music phenom has topped the pop charts with her first No. 1 hit, the first time a country crossover has crowned the Top 40 in the 16-year history of Billboard's Nielsen BDS chart. "Love Story" is the lead single from Taylor's already-triple platinum sophomore release Fearless.
"Love Story" also has the distinction of being the country song with the most paid downloads in history, having spent two weeks at No. 1 on the country singles charts in November. "White Horse," the second single released from Fearless, is currently climbing the country radio charts in the Top 10 and is the first video ever to debut at No. 1 on CMT's Top 20 Countdown.
Taylor, who is featured on the cover of the March 5 issue of Rolling Stone for the second time in a year -- and just received two Academy of Country Music Award nominations -- is currently in the United Kingdom making promotional appearances in support of the upcoming European release of Fearless. She plans to hit 52 cities in the US and Canada with her headliner tour starting March 1 in Florida.
Taylor Swift’s Secrets of a Good Girl
The world’s biggest new pop star is a little bit country, a little bit rock & roll, and all control freak. What’s behind Taylor Swift’s drive for success? Vanessa Grigoriadis hangs out with the Grammy-nominated, chart-topping 19-year-old superstar for Rolling Stone’s new cover story to talk awkward middle-school memories, how Joe Jonas broke her heart, and how Swift transformed herself from a hard-working kid growing up in Pennsylvania into Nashville’s favorite adopted daughter.
Saturday, February 21, 2009
you should also you also have to consider that how to eat.
United States of America (Press Release) February 21, 2009 -- As everybody is aware with this fact that patient has to follow all prescribed instruction of surgeon strictly, after any surgical process. This step is essential for best results and faster recovery and is also applied in Lap Band Surgery, by which you can loose some mass form your body. Diet for Lap Band Surgery is one of those suggested fields. So, if you are also get treated by this surgery or consider for it then you can get plenty of information on this topic. If you are interested to get info on this topic, keep reading this editorial.
First of all you should know that during the surgical procedure of Lap Band Surgery the holding capacity of food of patient’s stomach is get reduced, after which it also can hold about four to six ounce of food. For that reason, you have to consume such things that have lot of nutritional value in each bite.
Eatables you should not eat:-
You have to keep distance form the eatables, which contain fats, fried foods, spices like pepper, takes time to digest, high fibers vegetables as like celery sweet potato and some more. On the same matter, hamburgers, steaks, pork, onion are totally banned after operation of the surgery. The fruits and vegetable that you eat should be deseeded and se-skinned before ingestion.
Eatable you should eat:-
As above mentioned that patient should consume the eatable after surgical treatment, which contain high nutritious value. So, one should be very familiar that what they eat. Medical practitioners advised to consume 50 to 60 grams of protein included foods regularly. Here, it is essential to use this amount of proteins to prevent from protein deficiency because lack of protein component in body causes muscle weakness, anxiety, hair loss, depression, anemia and even death.
Mostly, diet plan of patient changes form passage of time or you can also say that you have to follow diverge diet plan after Lap Band Surgery
Phases of diet plan:-
• Immediately after the surgery, surgeons only suggested liquid diet to patient like fruit juices, skimmed milk and so on but high calorie beverages like tea, coffee and other are prohibited. You have to take liquid diet for two or three weeks of surgery.
• After this duration, patient can go for pureed eatables like soft fruits, blended vegetables, meat and so on.
• From four to sixth weeks of surgery you can go to normal diet chart by going form soft eatables. But there are still some food items that are totally discarded for patients.
present and past. Indeed aim and future plans are very much important for every people in this world. Because the past is not in our hand as it is gone and if we have aims and future plans then only we can able to spend our present time in a fruitful way. Yes all the present days things must be planned well in advance then only we can able to make full use of our life. You can clearly understand with the following example.
The daily practice of visualizing your dreams as already complete can rapidly accelerate your achievement of those dreams. Visualization of your goals and desires accomplishes four very important things.
1.It activates your creative subconscious which will start generating creative ideas to achieve your goal.
2.It programs your brain to more readily perceive and recognize the resources you will need to achieve your dreams.
3.It activates the law of attraction, thereby drawing into your life the people, resources, and circumstances you will need to achieve your goals.
4.4. It builds your internal motivation to take the necessary actions to achieve your dreams.
Visualization is really quite simple. You sit in a comfortable position, close your eyes and imagine — in as vivid detail as you can — what you would be looking at if the dream you have were already realized. Imagine being inside of yourself, looking out through your eyes at the ideal result.
Friday, February 20, 2009
Eating the correct food, kicking the butt and getting enough exercise are the keys to a long healthy life, says a new report.
The report says that foods rich in vitamin B12 such as fish, eggs, milk and fortified breakfast cereals plus Omega 3 found in oily fish are all good for the brain, reports the Daily Express.
Calcium-rich food such as milk, cheese and yoghurt is important to keep bones strong and healthy and cut the risk of osteoporosis. Vitamin D, found in
healthy long life
sunlight, oily fish and some breakfast cereal, is also good for bones and muscle.
Nutrients for a healthy heart include Omega 3, fibre, folate, vitamin B12 and potassium.
Eating oily fish, leafy vegetables, beans, fruit and nuts will boost the chances of getting enough of these nutrients. Even the eyes can be kept healthier for longer by eating the right food. Kiwi fruit, grapes, spinach, broccoli and red peppers are sources of nutrients, which protect the eyes. Activities such as walking, dancing and even gardening reduce the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and even some cancers.
The report was compiled by experts from universities including Oxford, Surrey and Newcastle.
Patients with existing heart disease or blood pressure problems are unlikely to benefit by drinking more coffee
The odds of having a stroke may be lower for tea drinkers and coffee drinkers.
A study involving more than 80,000 women over a period of more than 20 years showed those who consumed several cups a day were much less likely to suffer a clot on the brain.
The finding came as a surprise to researchers who had originally set out to investigate reports that the beverage increased the risk of a stroke.
In a report on their findings, published in the journal Circulation, they said: "Long-term coffee consumption was not associated with an increased risk of stroke in women. In contrast, it may modestly reduce the risk."
Although the study was carried out in women, it is thought that the benefits would probably apply to men too.
Experts are not sure why coffee has its protective effect but say it could be due to the antioxidant content of the drink.
Researchers stressed that the protective effect of coffee is only found in those who are already relatively healthy.
Patients with existing heart disease or blood pressure problems are unlikely to benefit by drinking more coffee, they said.
Researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) pooled data from 10 studies of clot-related strokes that mentioned tea consumption.
The key finding: Strokes were 21% less common among people from any country who drank three cups of tea per day, whether that tea was green tea or black tea.
Scientists at UCLA and the University of Southern California reviewed national health survey data from nearly 9,400 U.S. adults aged 40 and older.
Participants reported their typical daily coffee consumption and whether a doctor had ever told them that they had had a stroke. Strokes were reported by 5% of the group.
The key finding:
The more cups of coffee participants drank, the less likely they were to report ever being diagnosed with a stroke. For instance, among people who reported drinking one to two cups of coffee per day, 5% reported a history of stroke, compared to 3.5% of people who reported drinking three to five daily cups of coffee and about 3% of people who said they drink six or more cups of coffee per day.
Researchers in Spain found drinking at least two cups of coffee a day for years can lower the risk for stroke. The catch is - you can't have a cigarette with your coffee.
A large, long-term study called the Nurses' Health Study found healthy non-smokers who drank coffee had a 43 percent reduction in stroke risk. Compare that to just a three percent risk reduction in smokers.
Experts think antioxidants found in coffee are key.
Invite a child to draw two pictures—one on a rainy day and a second in the sunshine—and you beautiful much know what to be expecting. In the first, as blue raindrops fall from the top of the page, the stick figure behind the window is frowning. When a yellow sun beams from the corner, the stick man is smiling, with his scrawny arms in the air and colorful flowers at his feet. Even his stick dog wears a grin.
That rain is shade and sunshine happiness is symbolic rather than scientific, though it rings true because we humans are naturally feeling to our environment. But we are not its victims. Barring a mood disorder, our emotions are not casualties of the weather. The rain can be guilty by association, but not causation.
Why? Because we are f to make choices that either better our temperament or degenerate it.
Temperament vs. temperature
Since the early 1970s, around the time B. J. Thomas sang "Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head," researchers have sought to confirm a relationship between weather and temperament. Predictably, the lion's share of studies correlate a low mood—episodic depression, lack of vigor—with high humidity and limited exposure to sunshine. Spirits tend to rise with increased time in the sun and higher barometric pressure.
More recently, in October of 2008, a group of European researchers examined the impact of six different daily weather factors—temperature, wind, sunlight, precipitation, air pressure, and length of day—on more than 1,200 participants from Germany, most of them women.
Contrary to most prior research, the study's central conclusion was that the average effect of "good" weather on positive mood was minimal. Windy, cool, and darker days seemed to have just a slight negative effect on mood, with many subjects reporting that they felt tired or sluggish.
Though the study is ambitious and offers a new perspective on research on weather's relationship to mood, it strains to draw a consensus. From the range of responses the study's subjects recorded in their journaling, the researchers determined in the end that "people differ in their sensitivity to daily weather changes."
Sunny day, dreaming the clouds away
Some people's emotions are simply more vulnerable to weather changes than others. Someone prone to a low mood on dark, cold days will likely experience a depressive winter when there's a prolonged string of like-weathered days. This propensity is the basis of Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
However, most people are no more emotionally powerless against the weather than they are unable to put on a hat.
Ani Kalayjian, Ed.D., R.N., professor of psychology at Fordham University in New York, advises that we "can and should take proactive steps to strengthen the [brain's] system" against weather-driven mood changes.
"We encourage people to take charge of their feelings," says Dr. Kalayjian. Her self-help recommendations for SAD sufferers are applicable to anyone who wants to put a little sunshine in his or her step.
"Do things that make you feel good, like listening to uplifting music or reading a good novel. Look at pictures from a vacation—and if you can, take a vacation to a warm place." All of the tried-and-true methods of mood improvement and stress management apply as well, including getting regular exercise, moderating alcohol intake, and meditating.
"Feelings are transient; we can change them, transform them into positive," concludes Dr. Kalayjian. You may not be able to will the sun to break through overcast skies, but you can empower yourself to break through an emotional cloud.
A prescription for seasonal moodiness
In terms of psychology, grey skies fall into a grey area. Physiologically, though, we do reckon with weather conditions—sunlight, in particular—in direct and measurable ways.
Research on SAD has been focused on the brain's response to darkness and light, as the condition has been linked to the shortened daylight hours of winter.
When our eyes detect darkness, a small gland in the brain called the pineal releases melatonin, which establishes sleep cycles. When we detect light, melatonin production subsides and its cheerier hormonal sibling, serotonin, takes over to promote wakefulness and help elevate mood. (The word serotonin is rooted in serum + tonic, so it's like an elixir for happiness. Melatonin is the mel or "black" tonic, for darkness.)
For most of us who aren't suffering from SAD, the prescription for moodiness is straightforward.
What does natural melatonin do in the body?
Your body has its own internal clock that helps regulate your natural cycle of sleeping and waking hours (or circadian rhythm) in part by controlling the production of melatonin. Normally, melatonin levels begin to rise in the mid- to late evening, remain high for most of the night, and then decline in the early morning hours.
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Speaking Feb. 13 at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Chicago, at a symposium paying tribute to Charles Darwin a day after the 200th anniversary of his birth, Blumstein shared lessons and insights from Darwin that can be applied to our own safety — from using ATMs in unsafe neighborhoods to dealing with terrorist threats.
"Species that don't figure out ways of dealing with threats go extinct," said the UCLA associate professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, who studies fear, risk assessment and management, and anti-predator behavior. "Species that persist are those that figure out how to manage risk. From the paleontological record, we can see evidence of successful strategies. We can learn fundamental lessons from animals and plants — lessons from biology and evolution — that are applicable to managing security threats. Evolution has given us a wonderful historical record and series of experiments that have been replicated again and again.
"How do you manage risk? How do you decide to allocate energy to defense versus other things? These are fundamental trade-offs that all organisms face," he said. "One possible reason for extinction is that individuals are making incorrect decisions about how to manage the risks they face."
Among the lessons Blumstein draws: Accept that you have to learn to live with risk (in Los Angeles, for example, almost all of us drive on freeways); don't overreact; maintain flexible and adaptable response systems; eliminate defenses when you do not need them anymore; and slightly overestimating risk is better than underestimating risk.
"A problem all organisms face is how not to allocate too much energy to defense," he said. "All animals have to live with risk. Over evolutionary time, we can use life as an experiment that gives us insights into what might work and what might not work. There are commonalities that humans and nonhumans face when dealing with threats."
To illustrate various evolutionary risk-management strategies, Blumstein suggested imagining one's self at an automatic teller machine in a bad neighborhood.
"One strategy to reduce risk would be to approach the ATM cautiously and spend a lot of time looking around while there. By doing so, you will spend more time in an exposed position," he said. "An alternative strategy would be to run in and run out as quickly as possible. We see evidence that animals use both strategies in nature. Some species are more vigilant in risky areas, while others are less vigilant, and by being less vigilant, they are able to reduce their exposure to predators because they decrease the amount of time in risky areas. Evolution and the diversity of life show us there are many strategies to solve problems and respond to risk."
The government cannot eliminate risk for all citizens, Blumstein noted, and citizens cannot eliminate all risk from their lives.
Creating a new Department of Homeland Security may not have been more effective than improving communication and coordination among preexisting agencies, which could have achieved as much without the additional infrastructure and without the additional cost, he said.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Everyday your life provide you new hope.so a new day and everyday has some purpose in your life.
Morning is an important event in every one's life that decides his or her day.
The idea behind wishing "Good Morning" is creating those positive emotions. It follows Law of attraction.
These are things you can do to add fragrance to your mornings:
1. When you wake up pray God for giving you this day and close your eyes and think about God for 2-3 minutes at least.
2. See yourself in the mirror, smile and talk about what you are going to do whole day.
3. Always try and make it a habit of managing yourself for the breakfast for your family.
4. Talk to your family about their day schedule that will keep you informed about your family.
5. Play some music that is calm and refreshing while you prepare for the day ahead.
"Have a nice day."
some life words.....
all your goals in a piece of paper and have a look at them everyday. Try and assess yourself everyday to find how you worked towards achieving your goals and what negative thoughts blocked your way. While constantly training and stressing yourself to work towards success and your goals you are attracting them towards yourself. You are generating positive energies that will make your whole body and mind work towards your goals.
Monday, February 16, 2009
Bruce Frederick Joseph Springsteen (born September 23, 1949 in Freehold, New Jersey, US) is an American songwriter, singer and guitarist. He is also known as “The Boss”. He has frequently recorded and toured with the E Street Band. Springsteen is most widely known for his brand of heartland rock infused with pop hooks, poetic lyrics, and Americana sentiments centered around his native New Jersey. His eloquence in expressing ordinary, everyday problems has earned him numerous awards, including eighteen Grammy Awards and an Academy Award, along with a notoriously dedicated and devoted global fan base
On this album's opener, Outlaw Pete, Bruce, it seems, is addressing nothing less than America's own past coming back to haunt it (in the guise of a bounty hunter finally catching up with the titular outlaw) and Working On A Dream uses the complete range of The Boss to hunt down and redefine the dream in the 21st century.
Yet the use of an harmonica sample from Sergio Leone's Once Upon A Time In The West on Outlaw Pete is misplaced, for unlike Leone's cartoon vision of the great American Western it's the late films of John Ford that seem more relevant.
These are songs filled with nostalgia, regret, shame and yet, like Ford, underneath it all a love of the American Dream.
These days it seems that all the Boss can do is sound like a classic. The E-Street Band barrel manfully through tracks like My Lucky Day with all that Phil Spector widescreen verve, while This Life's first 15 seconds could even be the Beach Boys.
Much like Johnny Cash, Springsteen's status, at once heroic and preposterous, is now utterly assured. Whether you buy the image will probably dictate as to whether you regard Working On A Dream as being among his masterworks. Maybe we should just be grateful that somewhere there's someone still this guileless. But it's a paradox for a man who's made a career out of chronicling the working man's experience (he still sings about getting his hands dirty on the title track) that he's almost become an archetype.
Like his previous album, a great deal of this stuff is about mortality and age. Bruce's entourage is now feeling the hand of the Reaper. Magic was dedicated to right hand man Terry MacGovern and here The Last Carnival is a thinly veiled tribute to the passing of keyboard player Danny Federici. But it’s far from bleak; Tomorrow Never Knows sings of time's passage with a jaunty Pete Seeger-in-Nashville swagger.
Beyond the usual bombast Brendan O'Brien's production work is a little less cluttered, the songs a little more closely mic'ed, and there are some small but significant stylistic experiments. Life Itself has some vaguely trippy guitars at its heart and Queen Of The Supermarket's coda checkout beeps lifts the potentially banal analogy of the mall as palace of seduction to another level.
It’s hard not to read all this as a brazen attempt to encapsulate a nation on the brink of a new era. But who else is as qualified to ring the changes? Dylan's found a new home in the primal blues of his youth, while artists like Neil Young are too personal in their attempts to sum up a nation's mood.
Bruce still stands tall as both conscience and as a teller of tales.
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Every year scientists discover new ways men can protect their hearts--from steps you can take to avoid problems, to drugs and gadgets that can help if you already have heart disease. We asked heart researchers to boil it down to 10 simple rules men can follow.
Get the Latest, Greatest Test
That's the highly sensitive C-reactive protein test, or HSCRP. A study reported in the New England Journal of Medicine found that this blood test is twice as effective as a standard cholesterol test in predicting heart attacks and strokes. It measures the levels of a specific blood protein that indicates that you have inflamed heart arteries--the kind that rupture and cause heart failure.
When researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston monitored 30,000 women for 3 years, they found that those with the highest levels of CRP suffered a much higher rate of heart attacks and strokes. And this result is perfectly applicable to men, says Paul Ridker, M.D., the lead study author.
"Since half of all heart-attack victims have normal cholesterol levels, the HSCRP test is a much better way to figure your true risk," he explains. Ask your doctor to perform the $15 HSCRP test (not the standard CRP test; that's important) along with your regular cholesterol test. "That gives you plenty of time to make some serious lifestyle changes to reduce the risk," concludes Dr. Ridker.
Keep up With Your Exercise
Over the past 4 decades, dozens of studies have shown that exercise is good for your heart. But here's the catch, according to a recent survey: You're only as strong as your last workout.
Doctors from the Framingham Heart Study in Massachusetts compared people who'd only recently started exercising with those who used to exercise regularly but stopped. Their finding: The cardiovascular mortality rate was 40 percent lower among the current exercisers.
Their deaths encouraged Marshall to change her eating habits and to exercise regularly, she said.
"I don't eat a lot of fried foods," Marshall said. "I bake most of my meats, eat vegetables and drink a lot of water. I try to get out there and walk often, too."
At 78, Marshall thinks she's in good health. She goes to the doctor and to community health programs.
Last week, Marshall attended the first annual "Community Go Red Luncheon: It's a Heart Affair," organized by the Jackson chapter of Top Ladies of Distinction, Inc., a national humanitarian organization.
The program, a fundraiser for the American Heart Association, educated women about heart disease and its risk factors in the activity center of Macedonia Baptist Church.
"When I heard it was a program about taking care of your heart, I thought I needed to come," Marshall said.
More than 150 people attended the event, which included blood pressure and sugar tests, a lecture from a local cardiologist and a fashion show. Many came dressed in red to support Go Red for Women, a national movement founded by the American Heart Association to fight back against heart disease, the No. 1 killer of American women.
February also is American Heart Month.
Janice Sowell, director of the East Jackson Family Medical Center, said heart disease is usually hereditary. She helped attendees test their blood pressure and sugar levels.
"As long as you keep your blood pressure and sugar good, it reduces the risk of having heart disease," Sowell said while checking someone's sugar levels. "Most people who have diabetes have high blood pressure, which can turn into heart disease. It all works together."
When Jimmy Wilson of Jackson found out his mother had congestive heart failure, he started researching heart disease. His mother had never had a heart attack, he said.
Wilson wanted to understand her disease - as well as help make sure she went to the doctor and took her medicine, without being too pushy, he said.
"You have to allow people to do for themselves sometimes," Wilson said while speaking about his mother during the program's "Untold Stories of the Heart." "But my mother was very stubborn. She tried to outsmart her doctor. She didn't want to take her medication."
Eventually, Wilson said his mother began to listen to her doctor as she tried to improve her condition through exercise and a better diet. He was happy to see her make these efforts before she died.
"When she died, her heart stopped, and it was painful to watch someone who was healthy deteriorate," Wilson said. "I thank God I was able to be with her those years. I thank God for Top Ladies educating the public about heart disease."
Pam Springfield, the program's coordinator, said the chapter, which includes 13 women, began planning the event in October. Every month, the group, which is a predominantly black women's organization, addresses a health issue as part of its national goals to help enhance the lives of women, she said.
"We decided to organize a big event in February since it's American Heart Month," Springfield said. "I kind of noticed the community doing Go Red events but never in the black community."
'Guard your heart'
Dr. P. Renee Obi, a cardiologist with the First Care Medical Center in Jackson, said heart disease should be an important topic in the black community because coronary heart disease kills more black women than cancer.
Since the '50s, black women have had a higher death rate of heart disease than white women," Obi said. "Even though the gap is declining, black women are still more likely to die from this disease. Us as black women need to learn more about our body and the symptoms of heart disease."
It's also important to remember that the heart is a major pump, she said.
"Its job is to pump our blood. Guard your heart more than any treasure because it is the source of all life," Obi said, quoting a Bible verse from Proverbs. "Fortunately, God just doesn't spring heart disease among us. We have certain warning signs that tell use we might have heart disease."
Warning signs of heart disease include chest discomfort, discomfort in other areas of the body, shortness of breath, breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or light-headedness.
Obi encouraged women to exercise, quit smoking, and to visit their doctor regularly to help reduce their risk of getting heart disease.
"Unfortunately as black women, we're not doing all we can to lower our risk factors," she said. "More than three-fourths of black women are obese and exercise less than white women. If we all listen to messages from our body and not be stubborn in our mind, maybe we can help keep our bodies in tune."
Tony Black of Jackson said the program inspired him to take better care of himself.
"I'm always concerned about heart issues, because it's a major disease that affects men and women, specifically African-Americans," he said.
The show, sponsored by the Wilbourn Sisters Designer Boutique in Jackson, featured all red designs, from cocktail dresses to suits and shawls.
The program also included praise dance performances.
Nya Carney, 13, who danced at the event, is a member of the Top Ladies of Distinction's Top Teens program. She was inducted in October.
"The group has done a lot of good things in the community, and I wanted to be a part of it,"
Eggs are packed full of nutrients
They contain a range of nutrients including high quality protein, vitamins and minerals and as they are not high in saturated fat, they make them a healthy fast food for all the family.
They’re low in calories with only around 80 kcals per medium egg – so they are great if you’re on a diet, especially combined with vegetables and salads as part of healthy balanced meals.
Eggs contain many vitamins. In particular, they are source of various B vitamins and are especially rich in vitamin B2 riboflavin, and vitamin B12. Eggs are also a rich source of vitamin D and they also contain vitamin A.
Eggs contain many essential minerals and trace elements, including phosphorus, iodine and selenium and iron and zinc are present in smaller amounts
'Limiting egg eating has little effect on cholesterol levels, research has confirmed.
There is cholesterol present in eggs but this does not usually make a great contribution to your level of blood cholesterol...
A University of Surrey team said their work suggested most people could eat as many eggs as they wanted without damaging their health.
The researchers, who analysed several studies of egg nutrition, said the idea that eating more than three eggs a week was bad for you was still widespread.
But they said that was a misconception based on out-of-date evidence.
Writing in the British Nutrition Foundation's Nutrition Bulletin, they said eating saturated fats was far more likely to cause health problems.
Researcher Professor Bruce Griffin said eggs were actually a key part of a healthy diet, as they were particularly packed full of nutrients.
He said: "The ingrained misconception linking egg consumption to high blood cholesterol and heart disease must be corrected.
"The amount of saturated fat in our diet exerts an effect on blood cholesterol that is several times greater than the relatively small amounts of dietary cholesterol.
"The UK public do not need to be limiting the number of eggs they eat - indeed they can be encouraged to include them in a healthy diet as they are one of nature's most nutritionally dense foods."
While elevated blood cholesterol levels increase the risk of heart disease, only around a third of the cholesterol in the body comes from the diet.
Other factors such as smoking, being overweight and physical activity can influence blood fat and cholesterol levels and heart disease risk.
The British Heart Foundation (BHF) dropped its advice to limit egg consumption to three a week in 2007 in light of new evidence.
However, research by the British Egg Information Service suggests 45% of consumers still believe it was sensible to limit consumption.
Victoria Taylor, a senior BHF dietician, said: "We recommend that eggs can be eaten as part of a balanced diet.
"There is cholesterol present in eggs but this does not usually make a great contribution to your level of blood cholesterol.
"If you need to reduce your cholesterol level it is more important that you cut down on the amount of saturated fat in your diet from foods like fatty meat, full fat dairy products and cakes, biscuits and pastries."
In 2007 the Egg Information Service was banned from re-running a television commercial from the 1950s which urged viewers to "go to work on an egg" to celebrate its 50th anniversary.
The Broadcast Advertising Clearance Centre said the slogan went against the principle of eating a varied diet.
Friday, February 13, 2009
The Chinese authorities are suspicious of the religious origins of the celebrations, while conservative Hindus in India consider Valentine's Day to be an alien Western import.
However, neither ideological objection or militant intervention appears to have been able to check the growing international popularity of this day.
History of Valentine's Day
One legend contends that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome. When Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families, he outlawed marriage for young men — his crop of potential soldiers. Valentine, realizing the injustice of the decree, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When Valentine's actions were discovered, Claudius ordered that he be put to death.
The report by the International Planned Parenthood Federation - published on Valentine's Day - also reveals that between 70 and 80% of teenagers are sexually active.
Another Valentine poll shows that one in five young people don't want to get married, preferring to live with their partners instead.
So, is the traditional spirit of Valentine's Day dead, with romance and "courting" being replaced by the desire to have sex? And how is your Valentine's Day going, is it delightful or a disaster?
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
When I started school, I never felt quite confident enough to ask questions. Fortunately, I had one kind teacher who recognized that I wasn't a terrible student; I was just fearful. She began spending extra time with me, helping to draw me out. She listened to me and let me stumble over letters or words and, slowly, I began to ask questions.
Is it any surprise that I became a journalist? I now ask questions for a living, learning as I go. Some years ago, I started writing a list of questions: "Why are we born? What is our purpose? Why do we lose the people we love?" Before long, those questions became the foundation for my book, A Book of Questions: A Playful Journal to Keep Thoughts and Feelings. I dedicated my book to Carlota, the child I hope will never stop asking questions and never take no for an answer.
Please Ask Me Why
In theory, all parents want to give confidence their children’s interest, and that means answering lots of questions. But in practice, the endless "Why?" questions can get tedious and frustrating. It's helpful to try to see the world during your child's eyes. Everything is interesting, everything is unsolved. Try to remember how puzzled you once were by the things you saw and experienced, and how you needed someone to explain what was going on. By answering questions, you're showing your child respect. By keeping the dialogue open, you're telling your kids that you value their ideas and thoughts. So encourage your child to ask questions. It will help him:
Gain control over his world. You’re establishing a pattern of questioning that hopefully will stay with your child throughout his life. Convey to your child that the question is sometimes more important than the answer. Answers don’t always come easily, but when you ask the right questions you're on the way to finding out the truth.
Learn to think critically. It’s important to not simply accept things as they are given. We want our children to see that we have a right to dig and find the satisfactory answer. Questioning helps your child mull over what she sees on TV. It helps her to distinguish between fact and fiction, between entertainment and advertising messages.
Believe the complexities of life. While it seems that you have to offer an answer to every question—especially with very young children—sometimes there are no answers, or at least no simple ones. That’s an vital lesson for kids, too. There are lots of ways to work questioning into your child’s day. The first step is to make it a daily movement, maybe at the start of your evening meals or as part of bedtime. Jot a question on a piece of paper, along with a love note, to tuck into his lunchbox. That way, the question game becomes a nice way of staying connected through the day. The object is to try to get a handle on how your child views his world, and help clear up confusion he may have on difficult or painful issues.
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
WHEN YOU'RE FLYING SOLO AT A PARTY...
WHEN YOU'RE ABOUT TO TALK TO A HOT GUY...
WHEN YOU'RE ABOUT TO SLEEP WITH A NEW MAN...
WHEN YOU'RE MEETING HIS PARENTS..
WHEN YOU'VE GOT A BIG WORK MEETING...
THE LOOK OF CONFIDENCEA
What each number means when used in spirituality.
2: Polarity, yin/yang, relationships, duality, balance, union, choice, god/goddess, linked to the moon and the element of water.
3: Creation, art, mother energy, manifestation, social issues, fertility, home, self-expression, linked to the planet Jupiter and the element of fire.
4: Solidity, control, stability, foundation, the world, grounding, linked to the planet Uranus and the element of air.
5: Change, adaptability, intellect, adventure, imbalance, freedom, risks, self-indulgence, linked to the planet Mercury and the element of air.
6: Harmony, working together, potential, beauty, love, wisdom, devotion, linked to the planet Venus and the element of earth.
7: Spirituality, mysticism, solitude, intellect, philosophical, dreams, intuition, linked to the planet Neptune and the element of water.
8: Knowledge and strength, abundance, flow, infinity, regeneration, wealth, dedication, persistence, linked to the planet Saturn and the element of earth.
9: Ultimate expression of energy, compassion, spirituality, universal awareness, courage, selflessness, linked to the planet Mars and the element of fire as well as spirit due to the extreme spiritual energy that surrounds this number.
Monday, February 9, 2009
Even in times when full-on anger is justified, social protocol sometimes prevents you from truly venting.
How to Turn It Around
Wait it out. “Research has shown that the neurological anger response lasts less than two seconds,” says Ronald Potter-Efron, Ph.D., an anger-management specialist in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, and a coauthor of Letting Go of Anger.
Own your emotions. A simple rephrasing of your feelings can help you feel more in control. “I’m really upset by your behavior” is much more effective and empowering than %#*&@! For more tips on handling your anger in the heat of the moment, consult.
Look ahead. Will this thing matter in five minutes? Five months? Five years? If not, why bother wasting energy on it?
Put yourself in charge. Saying “I am choosing not to get angry about this” (or the opposite) can be empowering.
Adopt a more flexible philosophy of life.
A few truths: Things won’t always go your way. Accidents happen. The world is an imperfect place. Repeat as necessary.
Think of the harm you may cause. Say your child comes home past his curfew. Your options are screaming .
(outcome: an ugly late-night shouting match) or telling him that you’re quite upset and that you’ll talk first thing in the morning (outcome: a more coherent and calm discussion).
How to Turn It Around
Give it to them straight. “Sarcasm is passive-aggressive communication,” explains counselor Carlos R. Todd. Find words to express how you feel head-on. You might explain to a tardy friend, say, after you’re seated, “I wish you would try to be on time, especially when you know we have limited time.”
Be firm and clear. This is especially true with children, to whom a gentle “Jumping on the furniture is not acceptable” sends a much clearer message than the snarky “Don’t worry — we just happen to have $2,000 set aside for a new sofa.”
Speak up before you get bitter. Exercising assertiveness prior to arriving at your personal breaking point can help prevent a sarcastic streak from popping out
1. The time
2. The brain (I am not so much clever, but I can understand a few thing around)
3. The available budget
4. The friends of mine
5. People around in my work place
6. The tools I had (several fast computers, a huge amount of books, and digital libraries)
8. Health and safety
All and all I had many things around myself, but what I did, and what I gained where almost nothing compared to them.
Istarted analyzing my daily life’s mistakes, and it was like below:
I checked my email several times during the day as I was waiting for an important email, then I chatted with a few friends online about nonsense and useless things around. During the day I had to wait for one of the clerks, in the office for 45 min’s as he was talking to someone else. To continue of my current project I had to get some papers from him. I lost so much time, for nothing.
I did not use my brain to manage my time more efficiently, so I lost some more time on it. I did not think of a new method to do the project I was working for, so that I decided to find out how others have done it on the internet, I did not use my brain here neither and could not find a solution from the internet too.
Overall I was did not gain much thing from the day I had, lost one more day without a good outcome that can make me content about my life.
Personal continuity is an important part of identity; this is the process of ensuring that the quality of the mind are consistent from moment to the next, generally regarded to comprise qualities such as self-awareness, sentience, sapience, and the ability to perceive the relationship between oneself and one's environment. Personal continuity is the property of a continuous and connected period of time and is intimately concerned with a person's body or physical being. Associationism, or the method of how ideas combine in the mind, allows events or views to be associated with each other in the mind, thus leading to a form of learning. Associations can result from contiguity, similarity, or contrast. Through contiguity, one associates ideas or events that usually happen to occur at the same time. Some of these events form an autobiographical memory in which each is a personal representation of the general or specific events and personal facts.
Sunday, February 8, 2009
Secrets to Making Change Easier
In the words of creative British novelist Arnold Bennett, “Any change, even a change for the better, is always accompanied by drawbacks and discomforts.” So if you find change difficult to handle, you’re not alone; many others grapple with both the benefits and challenges brought about by change. Take solace in the fact that change happens to everyone everyday; it’s the one constant in life, the thing that connects us all.
maybe life has handed you a challenging change, or maybe you’ve initiated a change you’ve always wanted to make. At First30Days, we believe that the change you’re currently experiencing can be made easier, smoother and less stressful; we’re going to share proven tips and techniques to help you cope with this change—be it a career change, relationship change, health change or financial change—with hope, optimism and serenity.
At First30Days, we’ve developed nine principles, or secrets, to help you move through change to reach your destination successfully. We believe that creating an entirely new perspective on change—a new mindset about the transitions you face—will help you become a “Change Optimist” and love your life even more.
1. Change Your View of Change: Beliefs Can Make all the Difference
The things that you believe about change—and about yourself—will directly affect how successfully you move through your current transition, whether you’re in day one, day 30 or years past the start of the change.
People who fear change usually believe that change is hard, which lays bare all of their anxieties and insecurities. They then feel paralyzed and unable to move past this change for fear of failure. On the other hand, there are people who believe that change is a positive thing that will help them grow and learn. These “Change Optimists” also believe that something exciting is waiting for them on the other side of the transition—even if they can’t see the benefit now.
The good news is: we can identify and bust the myths and fears we have about change. Don’t ask the usual disempowering questions during change, such as “Why did this happen to me?” and “How will I ever get through this?” Kick-start a new belief about change with a few new questions, like “What could be great about this change?,” “What opportunity has this change brought to me?,” “What good things in my life haven’t changed?” and “What can I be grateful for?” When you ask these positive questions, you’ll perceive your outlook on change beginning to shift to the positive.
Survive Any Change
Everyone experiences change—it may be starting a new job, going through a breakup, handling a health diagnosis or a simple change you've been considering for years. Whatever change you're going through, remember change happens everyday, to everyone. There may be more than 6 billion people in the world but, as the one constant in life, change connects us all.
Though you know change is a key and necessary ingredient in life, that doesn't make going through change any easier. Here are 10 ways to survive any change, and come out smiling on the other side.
1. Change your mindset. Your thoughts on change are probably pretty negative, since for many people change means being pulled outside your comfort zone. Instead of asking yourself negative things about a change, ask what could be good about it. What opportunity has it opened up for you? Remember what good things haven't changed. And from now on, tell yourself that with every change in your life, something good will come. It may be impossible to believe right now, but the gift that comes from change—though it's probably not related to what you're going through—will have a very real effect on your life. For example, you may go through a painful breakup and then move to a new city a few months later. It's important to be on the lookout for good changes, and not necessarily where you expect to find them!
2. Plant the S.E.E.D. If you lost your job or just went through a breakup, you might be inclined to curl up on the couch with a tub of ice cream for a few days. This is the worst thing you can do. It's during change that we need to be the most vigilant about maintaining our health and well-being. It starts with the S.E.E.D: Sleep, Eat, Exercise, Drink (water, that is!). S.E.E.D is the foundation for handling whatever change comes your way. In the days immediately following a change, make sure that you get enough sleep, eat healthy foods, get some moderate exercise and drink plenty of fluids. You'll be surprised how well you can handle any change when you're feeling good!
3. Ask for help. A quick way to embrace change is to surround yourself with a team of people who can help. Whatever the situation, there is always, always, someone who can help. When you share the details of your change, you'll find that there is so much encouragement and advice waiting for you. Your team can be made up of family, friends, clergy members, therapists and co-workers. These people will listen, support and encourage you, but most importantly, help get you back on a path of hope and optimism! Practice saying the three simple words that will help you through any change: I need help. Most people think they will be viewed as weak if they say these words, but the opposite is actually true. People will admire your desire to grow and learn.
4. Turn on your Change GPS. Change brings up lots of emotions that keep us trapped in what once was. Get unstuck by turning on your Change GPS™! A GPS navigator only asks two questions: "Where are you now?" and "Where do you want to go?" Your Change GPS helps you move through change by alerting you if you're off course and encouraging you to focus on your final destination. If you want to lose weight, you can list the numerous reasons why you think you're overweight—an action that keeps you stuck in the past—or you can create a clear intention of where you want to go and how you're going to get there. Activate your Change GPS by stating your desire in the present tense. Then create a plan and take action. Watch how quickly you arrive at your destination.
5. Flex your change muscle. We're all born with a will to survive, a will to get better no matter what and a will to be happier. This part of us is the Change Muscle™. Our Change Muscle helps us adapt, accept the reality of our situation and find our center again. Every time we are faced with a change and move through it, we are activating our Change Muscle. Once we use the Muscle, it is strengthened for life—you can never lose all that you gained from past changes. Every time things get tough, flex your Change Muscle. You've gone through numerous changes before and have the strength to get through the change you're going through now.
6. Let go of fearing the unknown. If you're having trouble accepting change, turn to the analogy of the boat in the river: When you resist change, it's as if you're rowing upstream against the current. When change happens, we often look longingly back to what we used to have or what we used to be. We don't like where the River of Life seems to be taking us, so we cling to the rocks or we row vigorously back upstream—that's what makes change tough! Allow your boat to flow with the River of Life. Accept change by taking in your new circumstances without fighting, arguing, explaining or asking "What If?" It may be difficult at first, but you will soon see that life will lead you through this change and into a place of greater happiness and peace.
7. List your change resume. Whether you realize it or not, you have already gone through many changes—some that life has handed to you and others that you have initiated. Taking a few minutes to acknowledge the changes you have survived will assist you in tackling the change you're in right now—and future changes—with ease and grace! Write them down in a notebook or even on an index card, and separate them by changes that were given to you and self-initiated changes. Under each change, list the good things that eventually came from the change and write down what you learned about yourself during the change. In all likelihood, you will come across some similarities that make change easier for you.
8. Slay those demons. The six Change Demons—fear, doubt, impatience, shame, blame and guilt—help you figure out how you do and don't want to feel during change. When one (or more) of the Change Demons comes up, take a moment to remember those feelings are temporary. Emotions are like fuel during change. The negative ones can make change harder, while the positive ones can help us move through change in a simpler, quicker and more conscious way. The next time you experience one (or more) of the Change Demons, replace it with a better emotion. Replace fear with faith, doubt with surrender, impatience with endurance, blame with honesty, guilt with forgiveness, and shame with honor.
9. Meet your spiritual side. When everything around you is changing, look for the part of you that doesn't change and is always there—the part that is calm and centered. Creating a stronger, deeper relationship with the real you, while letting your tired and scared mind take a rest, is essential in helping you move through change with hope and optimism. When you tap into this side of yourself, you connect with an army of invisible forces that are just waiting to help you. You can to tune into this resource every day simply by focusing inward and noticing how things feel, taking a quiet walk, sitting in silence, praying, expressing your gratitude or meditating. Choose the outlet that works best or create your own. Once you become attuned to it, you can feel its stability, guidance and gentle suggestions.
10. Fight comparison sickness. We constantly compare our situation to others. We ask questions like: "Why is his life so much better than mine?" or "Why are things easier for her?" and even "If I had his money or youth, this change would be easier." We compare everything: social status, relationship status, looks, jobs, financial standing, friends and lovers, kids, homes and luck. Looking at somebody else's life does nothing to help you with your own change. Start believing in yourself and your ability to move through change. Remember that you have the talent, ability and strength to get through any change that comes your way. Take a moment to remember what you have to offer, your unique talents, what makes you you. Face this change with everything you've got, not with what anyone else may or may not have.
How to Survive a Financial Crisis
As the credit crunch tightens and the markets tumble, you’re probably looking to cut expenses in your daily life and start shoring up for your future. Even if you’ve spent the past 3,000 days playing fast and loose with your finances, it’s not too late to reevaluate your views on money, discover where your paycheck disappears to each month, and build a budget around your long-term goals. Living within your means now will pay off immediately in emotional rewards, and in financial rewards for years to come. Here’s how to start.1. Shine a light on your records. First, know what you owe. Pull together your outstanding debts, including car loans, credit cards, mortgage payments, and student loans. Sometimes it’s a relief to see what you’re up against in black and white (and maybe red). Often it’s the “not knowing” that’s the most stressful. Embrace the truth of your situation and you’ll be one step closer to being debt free.2. Know where your money goes. This is arguably the most difficult part of getting control of your finances. Stick an index card in your wallet and jot down every purchase you make, no matter how small. Do this for one month, then divide your expenses into two categories--things that are necessary, and things that aren’t (here’s a hint: food and shelter are necessary, weekly manicures and poker night with the guys are not). Weigh the immediate gratification of “I-want-it-now” impulse buys against your long-term savings and debt-repayment goals and you'll see that foregoing small conveniences now will trump more stress later. A site like Bankrate.com can help you create a budget. Adjust it until you find a balance that will work in the long-term. When you save on what you don’t really need, you can spend more on what you do.3. Wrangle your debt. If you have credit card debt, transfer a balance to one of your cards with lower interest. You’ll save money in interest, lower your debt ratio, and improve your credit score. Only use your cards if you can afford to pay them off immediately, otherwise lock them in a safe-deposit box or stick them in your freezer (seriously!). Experts suggest you then pay off the card with the highest interest first, move to any that are maxed out, and follow with the ones that carry the lowest balances. It might take time, but you can become debt free when you create a plan and stick to it.4. Minimize your lifestyle costs. As winter approaches, there’s talk that our energy bills could increase by 15% or more. Check your insulation and invest in thick curtains since about a third of the heat in a home is lost through the walls and windows. Buy energy-efficient light bulbs (and don't forget to flip the switch when you leave the room). Find the cheapest gas prices in your area by searching Gasbuddy.com, Gaspricewatch.com and Altfuelprices.com. Cancel subscriptions that you rarely (or never) use, call to negotiate lower rates on your cable and internet bills, and bundle your insurance policies with one company. Finally, make your "big ticket" items cost less--if you're paying more than 40% of your salary on your house and insurance, either refinance or consider selling and moving to a smaller home.5. Remember that you’re not alone. Schedule weekly meetings with your partner so you’re on the same page. You don’t need to bear this burden alone, and talking about your finances will paint a vivid picture of the future you envision for yourselves. If you’re single, consider having a friend help you stay accountable to your new frugal lifestyle.
What are the symptoms?
There are (so far) no reliable clinical tests for this condition, so the diagnosis depends on accurately identifying symptoms. An interesting 'diagnostic questionnaire' is available - but, of course, the condition should only be formally diagnosed and treated by a specialist.
Cars, sex and football may be compelling - but these pleasurable interests are never part of clinical OCD. People with OCD suffer from more mundane compulsions: things like repeated and stereotyped checking, counting, ordering or cleaning. Obsessive thoughts are sometimes distressingly violent or obscene.
OCD sufferers carry out compulsive rituals to such extremes that they interfere with normal living. It's normal, for example, to double-check that the gas fire has been turned off, and the front door locked, before you go to bed. But it's not normal to have to wash your hands 20 or 30 times a day in a rigid routine. Likewise, it's not normal to clean the house so thoroughly that you wear out the wallpaper, or to start meticulously setting the table for Christmas dinner in late September.
unpleasantly repetitive thoughts, images, or impulses coming from the patient's own mind
the thoughts are recognised as being silly or inappropriate
the obsessions are resisted unsuccessfully (at least initially)
the thought of carrying out the act isn't pleasurable in itself
present on most days for at least two weeks.
Freudians thought of OCD routines as a psychological defence against increased anxiety, and this is probably true in normal situations. Many of us would triple-check we had our passports before leaving on holiday, or have little mental routines we carry out before sitting exams.
But it seems that true, clinical OCD is a form of biological mental illness. It has a tendency to run in families, often occurs with other conditions such as depression and anxiety, and researchers have linked it to brain changes seen in specialised brain scans.
Untreated OCD tends to get better over time without treatment, but most people benefit from the group of antidepressants called SSRIs. This includes drugs such as sertraline or paroxetine. As with depression, it can take two to four weeks for the drug to have effect, and improvement may continue for several weeks or months after that.
Power tools such as hedgecutters, strimmers and chain saws are powerful time-saving devices for gardeners but need more care and attention to prolong their life and keep them safe to use. Damaged tools may need professional repair, particularly chainsaws and worn blades on hedgetrimmers. Before each use ensure the fuel is fresh, the oil is topped up and safety guards are intact. On electric tools make sure plugs have a working fuse and flexes aren’t frayed or worn. If a cable has been cut, shorten or replace it.
Spray the metal surfaces of tools with a light coating of general-purpose oil to prevent them rusting. Don't forget to spray blades that are difficult to reach, such as those on hedge cutters. Turn on the tool to make sure the oil works its way into all areas. To service a two-stroke petrol hedgetrimmer remove and clean the air filter and test that the recoil is in good condition. Clean the spark plug and use feeler gauges to check and adjust the gap.
Always disconnect the sparkplug lead when the mower is not in use and run down the fuel before storing the machine for the winter. This is particularly important if it takes unleaded petrol, which loses ignition quality over time. Remove any grass and soil from the rollers, blades and grass boxes with a stiff brush and hose. Apply some grease to the height adjusters and turn them slightly to prevent them from seizing up.
If the blades of rotary mowers are chipped or blunt, have them sharpened and balanced by a servicer. Cylinder mower blades are best sharpened professionally. Very badly worn blades of any sort will need replacing.
Remove the air filters and clean out any dust or grass to protect the engine. After checking that the throttle and clutch cables are not worn, trickle a little general-purpose oil along them to stop them sticking.
Also, change the machine oil ready for spring, making sure that the level is topped up. Without enough oil, the engine will burn out, causing irreparable damage. If you are in any doubt, have the mower serviced.
Unplug the lawnmower before starting any cleaning and remove any caked-on earth and grass from the undersides with a stiff brush. Stubborn debris can be loosened with a little water and some gentle encouragement with a scraper. While you are cleaning, check for cracks and damage on the plastic covers.
Blunt blades may be sharpened with a fine metal file, but replace badly worn or damaged blades. If you have any doubts about how to carry out the repairs, consult your local servicer.
Some tools will become blunt with use and their cutting edges will need to be sharpened. Blunt blades may be sharpened with a fine metal file, but badly damaged or worn blades should be replaced. If you have any doubts about how to carry out the repairs consult your local servicer. Remove any rust with a wire brush and wipe over with an oily rag; use a general-purpose oil. Blades on shears, forks, spades and other tools will soon rust if they are not given this quick, effective treatment regularly.
To sharpen blades of knives and secateurs, use a fine sharpening stone from a garden centre or hardware store. First, prepare it with a few drops of general-purpose lubricating oil. For a straight-bladed knife, push it forwards and to the side, exerting a little downward pressure. Then turn the knife over and, holding the blade almost flat against the stone, brush it across the surface to take off any rough edges. Use the same method to sharpen secateurs and hoes. It may be easier to move the stone as you move the blade. It is important to sharpen only the outside blade on bypass secateurs and the upper surface of hoes.
Finish off by wiping over the blade with an oily rag before storing. Hoes should be stored with the blade uppermost, ideally suspended from a hook on the wall. The same procedure may be carried out with the cutting edges of spades. In very stony and heavy soils, this sharpening process may need repeating during the season.
Bare wooden handles benefit from boiled linseed oil. Rub the oil on with a rag and allow the wood to absorb the first coat before applying more oil. This prevents drying out and splintering.
If a wooden handle is very dirty, remove as much of the soil as possible with a stiff brush. If you need to use water, gently wet the handle with a damp cloth, making sure that you don't soak the wood, as this may cause the grain to lift and the handle to swell.