Home Authors Posts by Jackie Cuban

Psychology graduate and mother of two, I am an enthusiastic blogger, with a great passion for healthy cuisine (chocolate is a vegetable, right?) and homemade solutions. So, apart from being a full time mother, I write and find joy in handmade crafting. My life is my inspiration, I might say, as I usually get inspiration from everything happening around me. My two kids, Annabelle and Will, are my greatest achievements and, I have to admit, the most inspirational people I know. Seeing life through a child’s eyes is more interesting than you imagine. I do not have the surprising answers to life’s difficult questions, but you might find the answers to a few very surprising questions.

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Are you looking for the best food dehydrator for your home? Then you are in the right place. Undoubtedly, a food dehydrator has become part of a modern kitchen, same as a food processor.

It is an essential tool for people who like to experiment with preparing their own meals. From parents to outdoor enthusiasts, and people in need of high-energy foods, a food dehydrator can be the best kitchen tool you'll ever buy.

What's so amazing about these food dehydrators is that they preserve your food without preservatives and additives.

You have several options when it comes to selecting the best food dehydrator for use. However, you need to take into account various factors that allow you to make the right decision.

Comparison Table

Types of Food Dehydrators

Inside the best food dehydrator is some nutritious fruits

Image via Flickr

Horizontal airflow dehydrators and vertical airflow dehydrators are the two main kinds of food dehydrators. Let’s discuss them in detail.

Horizontal airflow dehydrators

Vertical airflow dehydrators

Benefits of Dehydrated Foods

Dehydrated foods come with many benefits.

  1. In addition to being delicious and healthy, dehydrated foods are also light in weight. Consequently, they are great for camping, hiking, and traveling.
  2. Homemade dehydrated foods are less expensive than store-bought foods.
  3. Dried fruits, such as mango, plums, and apricots, are great options for healthy snacks.
  4. Dehydrated foods are easy to store. They occupy less space than canned or frozen foods.

Factors to Consider When Buying the Best Food Dehydrator

Here are some factors you need to consider when purchasing the best food dehydrator.

Choosing this will save you lots of time

Find out what the manufacturer has to say

Choose these types of food dehydrators

Your food dehydrator should not be without these

How We Reviewed the Best Food Dehydrator

Fruits onside the best food dehydrator

Image via Flickr

To help you choose the best food dehydrator, we have spent a significant amount of time leafing through dehydrator reviews and searching for the right ones.

We have compared the features, ratings, and customer reviews of different brands, such as NESCO, Presto, and Gourmia. These brands have been selling the best food dehydrator on the market for years.

Best Food Dehydrator: Our Top 10 Picks

We have created this list to help you select the best food dehydrator. Here are our top 10 picks in no particular order.

NESCO FD-75A, Snackmaster Pro Food Dehydrator, Gray
  • Adjustable thermostat allows you to dry different foods at proper temperatures (95º-160º F)
  • Powerful Top Mounted Fan. 600 watts of drying power. 120 Volt
  • Comes with 5 trays, but is expandable to 12 trays. (Trays are 13 1/2" in diameter)

The NESCO food dehydrator dries vegetables, fruits, and your favorite snack jerky in a matter of hours. It has an adjustable thermostat that allows you to select drying temperatures from 95 F to 160 F.

The food dehydrator’s Converga-Flow drying system ensures even and consistent drying. It has a top mounted fan that makes cleaning the dehydrator a breeze.

The NESCO food dehydrator comes with five trays that you can use for drying all types of food. However, it’s capacity can be expanded to 12 trays.

The unit has an opaque exterior surface that ensures your food is not exposed to harmful light, which can lead to loss of vitamins and nutrients in the food.

The NESCO food dehydrator has fruit roll sheets for drying fruit rolls, sauces, and soups. In addition, it comes with Clean-A-Screen for drying potpourri, spices, and herbs.

That’s pretty impressive. Most of the customers highly recommend this dehydrator because of its efficacy and ease of use.

Nesco FD-61WHC Snackmaster Encore Food dehydrator, Gray
  • 500 watts of drying power provides even heat distribution
  • Adjustable temperature control (95°F - 160°F)
  • (5) BPA Free trays with 0. 8 sq. ft. of drying area per tray - Expandable to 12 trays

The NESCO FD-61WHC food dehydrator features 500 watts of drying power and generates maximum speed for dehydrating venison jerky, beef jerky, veggies, and fruits.

It is a 5-tray dehydrator that can be expanded up to 12 trays. Like the above model, this unit too has an adjustable thermostat, and a top mounted fan.

The thermostat allows you to dry your foods at varying temperatures.

The Vita-Save exterior of this model protects your food from harmful light rays.

One buyer said that the food machine is worth spending money for.

Presto 06300 Dehydro Electric Food Dehydrator, Standard
  • NOTE :Item does not have an on off switch. This unit turns on when plugged in.
  • Four-tray system for dehydrating foods at a fraction of the cost of commercially dehydrated foods with no additives or...
  • See-through cover to monitor drying progress on top tray; Bottom-mounted fan and heating element provide consistent air...

The Presto 06300 Food Dehydrator comes with four trays for dehydrating foods, but it can stack up to eight trays. It runs consistently at 165 F.

The bottom fan and heating element deliver consistent airflow for uniform drying. Therefore, no tray rotation is required.

The Presto food dehydrator features a 600-watt power system. That enables the unit to handle heavy foods items effectively while consuming less energy.

The food dehydrator has a see-through cover that allows you to monitor the whole drying process.

One customer recommended this food dehydrator, especially for pet owners.

They said that they use this appliance to make healthy treats and snacks for their dog. Other buyers said that the Presto food dehydrator is a good product for a great price.

Magic Mill Food Dehydrator Machine - Easy Setup, Digital Adjustable...
  • REAR MOUNT FAN FOR SUPPER HEAT DISTRIBUTION – DRIES FOOD EVENLY The electric dehydration machine is equipped with a...
  • DIGITAL THERMOSTAT AND TIMER- AUTOMATIC SHUT OFF WHEN TIMER DONE -- An adjustable temperature and timer ensure you to...

With the Magic Mill Food Dehydrator, you will be able to dry meat, oranges, kiwi, kale, tomatoes, and other foods simultaneously. The dehydrator turns the slices of meat or fruit into crispy and delicious snacks in an effective way.

With its six adjustable trays, the Magic Mill Food Dehydrator lets you fill it up with several pieces of fruit, fish, or meat. The front door of this unit is transparent so that you can monitor the complete dehydration process.

The standard 95 F to 160 F range of temperature allows you to dehydrate different types of food.

Gourmia GFD1680 Countertop Electric Food Dehydrator - 6 Drying Trays -...
  • Healthy & delicious : A more flavorful, preservative-free, and cost-friendly alternative to commercial products.
  • 6 Trays : Simultaneously dry a variety of fruits, vegetables, herbs, or meats.
  • Digital controls: LED touch interface allows for easy setting of time and temperature.

The Gourmia GFD1680 Food Dehydrator is built from BPA-free plastic and comes with six trays. You can adjust the temperature between 104 F and 158 F.

The dehydrator has an auto shut-off function to give you peace of mind. It is important to note that the trays are not dishwasher safe and you can wash them with soap and warm water.

The Gourmia GFD1680 Food Dehydrator boasts a 480-watt power motor that operates efficiently and without any noise.

The unit has an electronic thermostat with a countdown timer and preset temperatures.

One customer said that they have used this food processor to make dried bananas and apples with remarkable results.

The appliance makes it easy to make a healthy and delicious snack. Other buyers said that the product works very well and is worth every penny.

Magic Mill Food Dehydrator Machine - Digital Adjustable Timer |...
  • REAR MOUNT FAN FOR SUPPER HEAT DISTRIBUTION – DRIES FOOD EVENLY The electric dehydration machine is equipped with a...
  • DIGITAL THERMOSTAT AND TIMER- AUTOMATIC SHUT OFF WHEN TIMER DONE -- An adjustable temperature and timer ensure you to...

The Magic Mill Food Dehydrator is an easy to use, versatile, and durable dehydrator machine. It includes nine stainless steel trays that you can use to dry your food. What's so great about these trays is that they last a long time.

You can use these trays to dry herbs, beef, jerky, fruit, bread crumbs, and granola. The rear-mounted fan promotes uniform drying and prevents the overheating that removes food’s essential nutrients.

This model comes with 600 watts drying power for efficient and quick drying.

This product received mostly positive reviews from customers.

Chefman Food Dehydrator Machine Professional Electric Multi-Tier Food...
  • DEHYDRATING SIMPLIFIED: The Chefman dehydrator includes 6 spacious (13"x12") adjustable BPA free plastic trays, so you...
  • DIGITAL DISPLAY: Digital temperatures preset settings ranging from 95º F to 158º F, integrated with a countdown timer...
  • CONSISTENT RESULTS: The Chefman 480W Food Dehydrator has a built in innovated design that maximizes airflow that results...

The Chefman Food Dehydrator comes with 600 watts of motor. Its innovative design maximizes airflow for uniform drying without overheating.

Plus, this food dehydrator comes with nine BPA free plastic trays.

What’s more, the unit has a transparent door that allows you to see the progress of drying fruit slices, sweet potato, jerky, beef, and vegetables.

Buyers said that the Chefman Food Dehydrator is easy to use and works very well.

Gourmia GFD1650 Premium Electric Food Dehydrator Machine - Digital...
  • 9 TRAY: Nine removable, non-stick trays provide plenty of room to dry anything from sweet pineapple slices to beef...
  • DIGITAL DRY: Adjustable settings range from 95°F- 158°F. The back-mounted fan provides silent, consistent, airflow and...
  • TRANSPARENT DOOR: Door is clear for easy at a glance monitoring of all sheets.

The Gourmia GFD1950 Food Dehydrator is an easy to use and reasonably priced dehydrator that comes with nine trays. The trays are built from BPA-free plastic to reduce the risk of plastic poisoning.

The dehydrator is ETL certified, which means it meets North American safety standards. It has a rear-mounted fan that circulates the hot air across the trays better.

The dehydrator boasts a digital timer that offers up to 19.5 hours of drying time.

Many customers said that the device is an excellent product for the price.

Maxkare Food Dehydrator Machine Digital Multi-Tier Food Preservation...
  • [5 Detachable and Stackable Rectangular Trays] The trays can meet a variety of needs at a time, easy to operate, and can...
  • [BPA-free Healthy Dehydrator] It is made of environmentally-friendly and durable plastic, and can dry a variety of...
  • [Adjustable time and temperature settings] It features LCD digital display with adjustable time of 1H-72H and...

This food dehydrator comes with five stackable and removable drying trays. The trays are easy to operate and can meet multiple needs simultaneously.

The food dehydrator is built from durable and environmentally-friendly plastic. That's awesome.

This unit can dry herbs, meat, veggies, and fruits to eliminate moisture uniformly so that the food retains its valuable nutrients during the drying process.

The machine features an adjustable timer that can be set anywhere between 1 hour and 72 hours.

One reviewer said that the Maxkare Food Dehydrator is great for people who do a lot of hiking.

Other reviewers said that this dehydrator works perfectly and is not too noisy.

COSORI Food Dehydrator Machine for Beef Jerky, Fruit,Meat,Dog...
  • Designed in California. Comes with 5 BPA-Free Trays, 1 Mesh Screen, 1 Fruit Roll Sheet, 1 Manual, 1 Free Recipe and 1...
  • EASY FOR BEGINNERS - With digital timer and adjustable temperature control.Time ranges: 30min-48hours, set the timer in...
  • VERSATILE DEHYDRATOR - Dehydrate beef jerky,turkey jerky,meat,fruits,vegetables for healthy life; Make non-addict dog...

The COSORI Food Dehydrator is safe to use and is made of BPA-free plastic. It has an auto shut-off function that prevents the unit from overheating and food from overcooking.

This dehydrator can quickly and easily dehydrate herbs, spices, and produce. Most importantly, it is certified by the FDA and ETL.

The machine comes with an adjustable thermostat that lets you dry your food at the right temperatures (95 F to 165 F) for maximum flavor and nutrition.

Most of the customers loved the COSORI Food Dehydrator.

Best Food Dehydrator for Your Home

Dried Zucchini inside the best food dehydrator

Image via Flickr

All the food dehydrators mentioned above boast a host of features that are useful and make dehydrating efficient and easier.

With these food dehydrators, you can dehydrate herbs, meats, nuts, vegetables, fruits, and much more.

Remember, the best choice of food dehydrator depends on how much you are ready to pay, how much space you have in your kitchen area, how frequently you will use it, and what you will use it for.

We hope our best food dehydrator list has been useful for you and it has helped you to find out a food dehydrator that fulfills your needs.

So, out of these best food dehydrators, which one is your favorite? Lets us know in the comment section.

Featured Image via Flickr

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podiatry versus orthopedic

It’s that time again — you’re having aches and pains and need to go to the doctor. But which doctor should you see? It’s always good to understand the differences between subfields of medicine, such as podiatry vs. orthopedics.

Basically, if you want to understand the difference between podiatry and orthopedics, you should understand more about what each of these doctors does. There is some overlap for sure, but there are many significant differences as well. After all, they are two different specialties.

They’re both qualified to treat a lot of the same conditions, although there are a few situations where one or the other would be the better choice.

Any doctor will be able to give you general medical advice. But as you know for any problem, it’s better to go to a specialist in that field. That’s why it is always good to know which doctor can best tackle your problem.

It’s also why learning about podiatry vs. orthopedics will be worth your time.

What Does a Podiatrist Do?

Podiatry is the treatment of disorders of the ankle and foot. This branch of medicine focuses almost exclusively on the ankle and foot, although podiatrists can also treat conditions on related parts of the leg.

Podiatrists don’t receive the same medical education as any other doctor. However, they do have extensive knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the entire human body.

To become a podiatrist, one needs to go through a four-year postgraduate training program. However, it’s a Doctor of Podiatric Medicine (DPM), not a Medical Doctor (MD) or a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO), as a physician would have.

Podiatrists are doctors, but not physicians. The DPM that they receive does not allow them to pursue a residency in any other area of medicine once they’re finished.

Once podiatrists are in practice, they’re only able to treat issues that have to do with ankles and feet, as well as related parts of the leg in some cases. They’re not licensed to provide other types of medical care.

However, that’s not to say a podiatrist can’t give you the same amount of help that a physician could for a foot problem. Their residency training typically lasts for three years.

Once they are done, they’re able to perform a wide variety of treatments. These treatments include surgeries, and podiatrists can specialize in different areas of foot care.

​Podiatrists treat the following conditions:

  • ​Toenail issues (thickened toenails, toenail fungus, ingrown toenails, et cetera)
  • ​Verrucas
  • ​Corns/calluses
  • ​Athlete’s foot/other conditions that would cause unusual odors
  • ​Flat feet
  • ​Bunions and blisters
  • ​Dry, cracked skin
  • ​Gout
  • ​Injuries that result from sports or aging

Podiatrists can provide a wide array of treatments. These include non-invasive shoe inserts, orthotics, surgical procedures, and preventive foot care for diabetic patients.

What Does an Orthopedic Surgeon Do?

An orthopedist, or orthopedic surgeon, has a variety of different functions. This individual can examine, diagnose, and treat injuries and diseases of the musculoskeletal system. They work with bones, muscles, nerves, joints, tendons, and ligaments.

​Orthopedists treat the following conditions:

  • ​Broken bones
  • ​Pain in joints (often via replacement of the joint)
  • ​Sports injuries
  • ​Bone tumors
  • ​Back pain, spinal stenosis, and ruptured discs
  • ​Limbs that need lengthening
  • ​Hip dysplasia
  • ​Bowlegs and club feet
  • ​Carpal tunnel
  • ​Hand injuries, including hand arthritis
  • ​Arthritis
  • ​Osteoporosis
  • ​Injuries to the foot and ankle, including the Achilles tendon
  • ​Orthopedic trauma
  • ​Bunions

The majority of orthopedists practice in general orthopedics, but there are also many who will specialize in specific areas of the body.

Many orthopedic surgeons become specialized in areas such as the hand and wrist, spine, knees, and feet/ankles. Some orthopedists also specialize in specific types of patients. They focus on areas such as pediatrics, rehabilitation, and sports medicine.

An orthopedic surgeon is a medical doctor. Just like any other physician who has an MD or DO, they must go to medical school. Then, they have to complete an orthopedic surgery residency in a hospital that will last for four to five years.

To practice, they must pass the United States Medical Licensing Examination. After they finish their residencies, they also have to pass an exam administered by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery.

That’s so they can be certified in their area of surgery, although they will need to re-certify every 7 to 10 years.

Podiatry vs. Orthopedics: Comparing and Contrasting

sample of bone in the table with a black gadget

Image by Unsplash

If you’re going to choose between a podiatrist and an orthopedic surgeon, it’ll help to know more about these two types of doctors. A closer look at podiatry vs. orthopedics will be instrumental in your choice.

This is how they’re alike

You should be aware that many healthcare providers evaluate and treat conditions that have to do with the feet. These include both podiatrists and orthopedic surgeons.

For many conditions, the question of podiatry vs. orthopedics has more to do with the doctor who makes you feel more comfortable as an individual.

There is a lot of overlap when it comes to the training in podiatry vs. orthopedics. Podiatrists do receive medical training, including specialized training on the lower legs, ankles, and feet.

They also receive a thorough education in proper foot balance and biomechanics, making them more than qualified to offer a variety of braces, orthotics, and custom shoes when needed — just like orthopedic surgeons.

Podiatrists and orthopedic surgeons will often treat their patients using the same techniques when it comes to problems of the foot and ankle.

That is especially true if you’re comparing podiatrists with orthopedic surgeons who specialize in the foot and ankle. Although they don’t hold the same title, their training and expertise are similar.

This is how they’re not so alike

Of course, the training of a podiatrist and an orthopedic surgeon is very different. Even though there is a lot of overlap when it comes to treatments, a podiatrist is not a medical physician.

While an orthopedist goes to medical school, a podiatrist attends an accredited podiatric medical school then goes into a three to four-year residency program focusing on foot and ankle surgery.

Because an orthopedic surgeon is a physician, he or she can treat the patient as a whole. Also, an orthopedic surgeon has been educated on the anatomy and physiology of the entire body and can handle a broader range of conditions.

Podiatrists can only treat conditions of the ankles, feet, and related lower leg parts.

Orthopedic surgeons have a stronger background in general medicine, but they’ve likely spent less time learning specifically about the ankles and feet. That said, some orthopedic surgeons specialize in foot problems, so their skill set is similar to the podiatrist.

Which Doctor Should I Choose?

Doctor writing on a clipboard

Image by Pexels

There is so much overlap when it comes to podiatry vs. orthopedics. However, there are situations where you might prefer one over the other.

For example, because orthopedists have the training to treat the entire body, they’d be the better choice when your foot or ankle problems originate from issues in your lower back or hip.

Of course, you can’t necessarily tell the origin of your pain, so this can be hard to determine. An exception may be an old hip injury that also caused foot pain if you’re feeling identical symptoms now.

On the other hand, podiatrists have spent more time studying the feet and only the feet. Because of this, they may have more knowledge of problems that only have to do with your feet.

Next time you have a problem with your foot or ankle, you should ask yourself certain questions. Does it involve any other parts of your body? Do you want surgery, or do you see surgery as a last resort? A lot of this is entirely up to you and what you feel is the best choice in your life.

Both a podiatrist and an orthopedic surgeon who specializes in the ankles and feet have the knowledge to help you.

In some cases, podiatrists will refer you to orthopedists (or vice versa) if they feel that the other specialty can address your problem more comprehensively. After all, they have been through similar training, despite the different titles and degrees.

Plus, they’ll likely utilize the same equipment to treat you.

What you don’t want to do, however, is choose a general orthopedic surgeon to treat your ankle or foot problem. A general orthopedist will be more likely to have strong knowledge on the hips, knees, and shoulders, rather than the foot and ankle.

Now That You Can Choose the Right Doctor

In many cases, the choice of podiatry vs. orthopedics doesn’t matter that much. That’s because both types of doctors would be able to give you equally good care.

Our best advice? Think about your own situation and whether or not one would be better than the other based on your symptoms and the information above.

You can’t always know based on your symptoms alone, but understanding more about podiatry vs. orthopedics can allow you to make a more educated guess at the very least.

What do you think of everything you’ve just learned about podiatry vs. orthopedics? Share your opinions and insights in the comments section!

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Compared to other careers, even ones in the entertainment industry, the years active for a star of any of the top sports is short lived. Most expect to retire by their forties, if not cut short by injury or illness. Typically, they either become commentators, T.V pundits, or if they do well, coaches and managers for academies or senior teams. So what alternative careers do some of the top athletes find themselves forging outside of this?

Famous Allblacks rugby star and captain Richie McCaw hung up his boots and skins in 2018 and announced earlier in the year that he had just gained his wings – as a commercial helicopter pilot, with Christchurch Helicopters in New Zealand. This was to go with his licence for gliding, which he had been practising since 2006. Aviation is something he said he held an interest in for a long time. Most recently in the spring he added a third, fixed-wing commercial pilot’s license, so he might be working for an airline near you soon. That’s quite a career change.

Sky Elicopter

It is interesting news that top-flight footballer Gerard Pique is already making inroads in, of all things, the world of poker. Who knows, when he retires it could open doors for him into a permanent new career. He will follow in the footsteps of England legend Teddy Sherringham and others who have made it their second livelihoods. You could always place some of your own bets on who else might join them now, given that it seems a popular route to go for footballers. Perhaps it provides an outlet for that competitive drive. Portuguese international Ronaldo has started to endorse online gaming companies, and enjoys a game of poker- along with athletes of wildly varying fields such as Aussie cricket and football star Ellyse Perry, Canadian skiing Olympian giant Kim Lamarre (freestyle skiing looks really cool), tennis star Rafael Nadal and countless more.

But what about more retirees and their unanticipated change of direction? An unlikely story, but one we are familiar with, is troublemaker footballer Vinnie Jones’ transition from bone-crunching tackles and controversy to hard-man on the big screen in over fifty films. He of course starred in such cult classics as Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, the apparent magnum opus of director and Madonna’s ex-squeeze, Guy Ritchie.

Arnold Schwarzenegger

Then there is the mind-boggling resume of Arnold Schwarzenegger. He may be known as another hard man of film but he too had a life before the big screen. Mr Universe at age 20, Schwarzenegger was actually a professional bodybuilder first. It was before he became the star of the Terminator franchise, and before he made the surprise swerve into politics. He then of course became a U.S Republican party candidate who went on to serve two terms as Governor of California.

Sometimes, much more rarely, people do it the other way round. They can leave more conventional careers to enter into professional sport – as 2004 double Olympic gold winning, middle distance athlete Kelly Holmes did. She left her position as a Sergeant in the British Army to start competing and the rest, they say, is history. Although, when she retired, she did follow a more expected route of joining sports behind the scenes, helping governing bodies in overseeing the new Team England at future Commonwealth games. Even though she was quite young at the time of the direction change, and unusually talented, it is still quite inspirational – even if you fancy quitting your day job to follow dreams of being the next table tennis, chess or tiddlywinks world champion! Or you might want to start having a few friends round for poker more often.

Image sources: 1, 2, 3

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How long does it take to become a dental hygienist? Quite a lot! The long road to becoming skilled as a dental hygienist takes time. Depending on which area of employment you’re willing to enter, it may take you a whole lot for you to be prepared and to actually have both the skills and licenses to prove it. This career learning curve is not all that difficult, so all of you reading this should have no problems given you are determined enough to pull through!

The basic skills needed by a dental hygienist are dexterity, a good attention span, and solid physical stamina, as highlighted by Gabrielle in this article. If you’re okay with all of these, then the path to dentistry should be a piece of cake. If, however, you may be lacking in one of these, don’t worry! The learning process is easy and with a bit of training, you too can be a dental hygienist!

How Long Does It Take to Become a Dental Hygienist?

With an annual mean wage that rose dramatically by at least $820 in 3 years, it’s pretty clear why so many people are looking to take care of our teeth. The job outlook for this post is also appropriately high. In fact, it’s much faster than that of the average job in the U.S., going as high as 19% for the year 2014.

Do you know what time it is? That’s right! Let’s check the infographic:

"how long does it take to become a dental hygienist infographic"

As you can see, how long does it take to become a dental hygienist really mostly depends on what you want to do with your career afterward. If you would like to go into academia or to land a better-paid job, both a BS degree and an MS degree are recommended. Here are the exact steps an aspiring dental hygienist needs to take:

Steps to Become a Dental Hygienist

A dental hygienist career can only be built via long years of both study and practice in the respective area of work. So don’t be alarmed when looking at the sheer amount of what you need to do! Take it step by step and it should be a piece of cake.

Earning a degree. First off, you need to get a degree. As we’ve already mentioned in the infographic, an Associate’s Degree will most definitely land you a job. A Bachelor of Science degree will, however, grant you a better paying job with possibilities of advancement. After that, an MA will most likely quadruple your chances of earning a respectable salary as a dental hygienist. This whole process will take between 2 and 6 years, depending on your choices.

Getting a license. After your degree, you need to become a licensed dental hygienist so as to practice your job legally. Once you do, you can even open your own office if you would like that. Studying and actually taking the exam will take you 3 months at the most.

Landing a job. Finding a job should be fairly easy in such a high-growth area. All you need to do is search for some and then pick a few that you like. If you know your profession, taking the interview should be extremely easy.

"how long does it take to become a dental hygenist dentist smiling"

This has been our guide to becoming a dental hygienist. Have you fully understood how long does it take to become a dental hygienist? Tell us if you wish to enter this fascinating line of work and what inspired you to do so!

Image source: depositphotos.com.

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According to official government statistics provided by the BLS (the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S), the average mortician salary for the fiscal year of 2014 was $52,550 per year or $25.25 per hour. The profession, also known as that of a funeral service worker, requires an Associate’s degree and has an average job outlook.

The mortician job is, therefore, higher paid than many US occupations featured in the BLS occupational handbook. However, some morticians and funeral workers receive a significantly lower pay for their job. The lowest paid 10% in this line of work receive just $25,910 per year, equaling to a mere $12.46 per hour. On the other end of the spectrum of reference for this occupation, the highest paid 10 points percentile get an average mortician salary of $83,520 or $40,16 per hour.

There isn’t enough data to adequately say much about wage equality within this profession. As of 2014, there were only 60,400 people employed in the general area of funeral managing and death care. Of these 60,400, just 23,000 were morticians. Of the 23 thousand, 17 thousand were men, while 7,000 were women. Funeral workers and morticians are generally employed in the following two areas. As you can see, the salary of a mortician does vary a lot between them:

Industry Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage
Federal Executive Branch (OES Designation) $34.77 $72,320
Death Care Services $24.94 $51,870
"mortician salary salary of a mortician average salary of a mortician average mortician salary"

A mortician makes arrangements for the funeral and takes care of the deceased.


What Is the Average Mortician Salary by Location

Depending on the location where he or she is employed, the salary of a mortician may vary very much. Furthermore, the levels of employment for this job tend to vary greatly depending on each State. While salary varies depending on how many people employ the services of morticians in the respective area, the general price-tag for a specific area also comes into play.

Here’s a list of the States which pay their mortician salaries the most in terms of the annual mean wage:

State Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage
Delaware $34.12 $70,970
Illinois $33.91 $70,530
New Jersey $33.80 $70,310
Rhode Island $33.74 $70,190
Nebraska $29.57 $61,510


Still, wage can be equally important as the specific level of employment. A mortician practicing his skills in Delaware might have a very hard time finding a job, even though the mortician salary is the highest out of all the US. That’s because the whole state has just 80 mortician jobs available. Here’s a table to indicate the best states in terms of employment:

State Employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage
Texas 1,940 $24.11 $50,140
Ohio 1,500 $24.83 $51,650
California 1,490 $22.71 $47,230
New York 1,460 $25.26 $52,540
Florida 1,250 $25.74 $53,540


Average Mortician Salary Change over Time

Given that the mortician job is seen as a hereditary line of work, parents usually pass on their trade to their kids once they reach an appropriate age. This means that most employees who begin work in this job line so early already know the skills they need to earn a decent wage. Here are the factors that influence the average mortician salary over time, according to PayScale:

  • Entry-level employees can earn up to 17% lower than the national average while mid-career employees earn just 5% more.
  • Experienced mortician will earn a mortician salary up to 23% bigger than the national average.
  • Late-career morticians may earn less than experienced morticians, but still 20% more than the average.

Image source: depositphotos.com.

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An age old question: can dogs eat bananas? We’re here to give you a definitive answer to this!

To begin with, you should know that yes, dogs can eat bananas. How much and for what dogs, however, really depends on each type of dog. Generally speaking, giving one dog a banana won’t do much harm. Go over that amount and you may start to have a bit of a problem on your hands. Technically speaking, a dog is not used to eating bananas. If you’re lucky, though, he might grow to like bananas and will just love it when you give it some as a treat.

However, remember that bananas are supposed to be a dietary supplement and nothing more. Don’t go about trying to replace the protein that a dog gets from meat with bananas. If you do so, your dog will probably start to hate you or just become very, very depressed.

Can Dogs Eat Bananas in Large Amounts?

As long as you actually give your dog some protein besides all that fruit, there should be no limit to the bananas you give it. Also, you have to take account of the dog’s size. Before we go into that, let’s look at this small infographic about dogs, banana, and how can dogs eat bananas:

"can dogs eat bananas infographic can dogs eat banana chips can dogs eat banana peels can my dog eat bananas infographic"

It’s really important to keep in mind that the smaller your dog is and the smaller its dietary needs, the fewer bananas you can actually give it. Here’s how you can pair your dog’s size to the number of bananas:

  • For a small dog. Small dogs are notorious eating too much and then throwing up. It’s the same thing with bananas. Therefore, for a small size dog, a few slices of banana per week should suffice. If you want to pamper the dog, repeat this once or twice, but be sure to not overdo it.
  • For a medium dog. Medium sized dogs are your favorite pal. Owners of medium-sized dogs may be tempted to give their dog anything and everything that they eat. However, when it comes to bananas, one or two per week should be more than enough. If you want to make your dog happy several times, give it half a banana every two days.
  • For a large dog. Any reasonable amount of Just be sure to follow the advice above and not give the dog too many bananas or he may go literally bananas (sorry for the bad pun!).

TIP: dogs that eat too many bananas will end up constipated. Be mindful of this when you feed it bananas.

"can dogs eat bananas dog with bananas can dogs eat banana can dog eat banana can dogs eat banana chips"

Can Dogs Eat Banana Chips?

Another pestering question: can dogs eat banana chips? Probably. I guess it comes down to taste. After all, dried banana chips are not necessarily everyone’s cup of tea (or accessory to one). Technically speaking, a dog can definitely eat banana chips. Still, too many are too many. The downside of this, surprisingly, is not constipation (as was the case with too many bananas), but the exact opposite: diarrhea. Surely, neither you nor your dog want that.

We hope we’ve clarified all of your dog-banana related questions. For any more questions about this, don’t be afraid to contact us right here in the comments section. Can dogs eat bananas? I think we proved that they can!

Image source: depositphotos.com.

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When it comes to moving, after all, the humdrum of the packing, the carrying, and the unloading, there’s one big question we all get stuck at: how much do you tip movers? The answer to this question is far from being a simple one. In fact, if we were to ask God a single question, forget the meaning of life, this one takes the spot!


It seems that there’s no stat movers tipping etiquette. Should there be one? Of course. Yet different moving companies throughout the U.S. have different views on how much you should tip their movers. However, they all seem to agree on something: yes, movers should be tipped. Why? Well, here are a few reasons:


  • They carry your stuff from your house to their car.
  • They drive along to your new place.
  • They carry your stuff from their car to your new home.
  • They offer to install everything so that everything is in tip-top shape.
  • They make sure not to break your extra-fragile stuff.
  • They come prepared, they do their job, and they leave without leaving a mess.

Obviously, if your movers fail to do one or more of the above, your question on the tip amount for movers is legitimate.


How Much Do You Tip Movers that Do Their Job Well?

Of course, there’s a difference. We’re not going to talk about employees that don’t do their jobs right. These should be happy to receive any tip if they’re lucky and the customer is feeling in a good mood. Yet when it comes to the question of professional movers, let’s look at the infographic:


"how much do you tip movers how much to tip movers tipping movers tip movers how much to tip movers long distance local movers tipping etiquette standard tip for movers tip amount for mocustomary tip for movers"


Add this infographic to your site:

So, as you can deduct from our nice graphic above, tipping movers is not just a question of money. Water is essential to a good relationship with the guys who basically put your whole house back together. Hot beverages are also a good thing to have, especially in bleak winter. Snacks, likewise, are a must have! And apart from that, you’ll also want to save money.

Did you know…

The standard tip for movers is considered to be 15% while saving in more for the actual driver. However, not many people actually give that much.

"how much do you tip movers how much to tip movers tipping movers tip movers how much to tip movers long distance local movers tipping etiquette standard tip for movers tip amount for mocustomary tip for movers"

How to Tip Movers Equally?

The big question of how much do you tip movers can easily be divided into several questions. Apart from the ones in the graphic above, we would think you will also want to know how much to tip movers locally, how much to tip movers long distance included, and how much you should tip each individual mover. Here are a few basic rules that we hope will answer all those questions:

  • The driver should be tipped according to the distance. If you’re moving over a long distance, tip the driver the most. It’s common courtesy.
  • The others should be tipped equally. Of course, you need to watch what they do and with how much care they do it. If you feel they deserve a little something extra, go ahead and give them the standard 15%, if you budget permits.
  • You don’t have to throw all your savings on them. Moving jobs over extremely long distances will cost a good amount of money. So for a cost of $15,000, you will probably not be that ready to give 15%, i.e. $2,250. You should give them only as much as you can afford. No pressure – they’re doing their job and they’re getting paid to do it.

In the end, how much do you tip movers really depends on how much you can give them, how tipping movers goes in your neighborhood, and what the standard top for movers is. We hope we’ve hit the spot and that you now know a few good tips for your next big move.

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With 1 of every 3 American adults suffering from high blood pressure, monitoring your blood pressure at home on a regular basis can keep your heart condition under control. As there are a few factors to consider and some important steps to follow, in this post we will provide you with essential and well-researched answers to:

  • how to take blood pressure manually;
  • how to take orthostatic blood pressure;
  • what is the difference between systolic and diastolic arterial pressure?
  • how long does it take to lower blood pressure?
  • how often should you take your blood pressure?

Chart indicating measurements for low and optimal blood pressure to severe hypertension.

How to Take Blood Pressure Manually

In order to monitor your blood pressure at home correctly, please make sure you first:

  • Check the accuracy of your blood pressure monitoring equipment. The easiest and the recommended way to do it is by taking your monitor to your doctor and checking it against his or her device. Taking your blood pressure with cuff and stethoscope (the instrument is called a sphygmomanometer) is not %100 accurate. Still, it gives results withing the 10% range.
  • Avoid drinking coffee or alcohol, as well as smoking at least 30 minutes before taking a reading.
  • Go to the toilet before you wish to measure your blood pressure. Otherwise, the values may be altered.

  • Find a quite place and relax. Your will need to hear your heartbeat so it is best not to speak along the process.
  • Inform on how to properly take blood pressure, more specifically, on how to take a blood pressure reading. The chart featured above will give you an idea on what the optimal blood pressure is, as well as on hypotension and hypertension values.
  • Learn how to take orthostatic blood pressure.

Next, if you want to learn how to take a blood pressure manually, without assistance, it is essential to follow a few simple instructions.

How to Take Manual Blood Pressure in 7 Easy Steps

  1. Roll up the sleeve (if you wear a long-sleeved shirt).
  2. Sit down on a chair and rest your arm on a table at your heart level. Use a pillow if needed.
  3. Place the Cuffs on your bare skin. Make sure they are tight.
  4. Position the stethoscope at the crease of the arm to locate your strongest pulse.
  5. Inflate and deflate the cuff (check the video below on how to take blood pressure manually).
  6. Listen for a first and second “thump” sound. The first occurrence of rhythmic sounds will indicate the systolic blood pressure, while the second, the diastolic blood pressure.
  7. Take a second reading. To check the accuracy of your blood pressure take a second reading on the other arm too. Wait a few minutes between readings.

How to Take Orthostatic Blood Pressure

Orthostatic hypotension is a medical term for the decrease in systolic and diastolic pressure withing three minutes of the pactient standing as compared with blood pressure taken while sitted. For taking orthistatic blood pressure using a cuff you will have to follow the steps ennuerated above, but also repeat the reading after standing 3 minutes. Don’t forget about the pulse rate measurements too.

It is also important to:

  • Take your blood pressure twice a day – first in the morning, before breakfast but never right after you wake up – and then in the evening. Compare the measurements to see how your blood pressure fluctuates after a day of work.
  • Always record you readings and inform your doctor on the values you get. From time to time pay his or her a visit and check your measurements against theirs.

Learn that there are various ways to check your blood pressure at home. Now that you have discovered the essential steps concerning how to take blood pressure with cuff correctly, let’s take a look at less popular or even unefficient ways to do it.

  • How to take blood pressure with fingers

Unlike the popular belief that blood pressure can be determined by using your fingers, such measurement is totally inneffectual. On the other hand, you can use your fingers to check your pulse. Place your first and second fingertips on your arteries and as soon as you have felt your pulse begin counting the beats for 60 seconds.

  • How to take blood pressure on leg

Until today, there is no blood pressure monitoring device for legs valided by the hypertension societies. However, you can take your blood pressure from the leg by using a cuff monitor, but note that it will be slightly different from the one in your arm. You can place the cuff either on your tigh, cald, or ankle. Studies suggest the ankle to be used in preference to the calf, but only if arm measurements are impossible or undesirable.

As we leave in a technological era, experts health care also recommend using an automatic monitor. You can alternate various monitoring devices and see which one works best for you.

How Often Should You Take Your Blood Pressure?

Scinetist from Harvard Medical School recommend you to take your blood pressure twice a day for a week. The first reading should take place early in the morning, before taking any medication, and the second, later in the evening. Then, keep on doing it twice a month, unless your doctor advice you differently.

Further Info

Looking for more information? The following instructional “how to take blood pressure” video might be of help.

There are also important and interesting facts about high blood pressure you may want to learn more about. Did you know that the in the morning arterial pressures indicate higher values as compared to evenings?

Learn more about how to take care of high blood pressure without medication in this MayoClinic article. Lowering your arterial pressure and level of daily stress is all about making lifestyle changes. How long does it take to lower blood pressure? Experts say that it all depends on your diet and exercise routine, as well as on additional conditions. Quitting drinking, for instance, might be a god start.

Do you ever take your blood pressure at home? Have you considered researching more on how to take blood pressure properly? Do let us know your results.

Image Source: Med-Health.net.

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The health benefits of cherries are many. They can improve motor skills, prevent diseases and even act as an effective sleeping pill. Without a doubt, this lovely fruit can help humans in a multitude of ways. Surprisingly, the cherries health benefits are only beginning to be understood, but they show much promise.

Cherries are a valuable source of fiber, proteins, vitamins A and C while having balanced levels of calories. The sweet cherry is an indigenous species to a large part of Europe, western parts of Asia and the northern part of Africa. The word cherry is derived from its classical Greek counterpart. The Greek word is also said to have its roots in the Anatolian language, mainly its largest subdivision the Hittite language.

health benefits of cherries

For thousands of years, cherries have been part of  individuals’ diet. The many cherry health benefits have been in late years more and more discovered. Ample research shows that the regular intake of cherries can help prevent a series of diseases, as well as help people lose weight.

What are the Health Benefits of Cherries?

Cherries are separated into two distinct species. Sour and sweet cherries can be used in a vast array of dishes. Although they are considered a dessert, they possess various health benefits.


The sweet cherries health benefits are strongly connected with the substances anthocyanins and cyanidin, that can be found within this fruit. Although the tart cherry juice health benefits also relate to antioxidants, the levels of vitamin E are much higher in sweet cherries. The latter also contains quercetin, a powerful antioxidant.


The health benefits of tart cherry juice and sweet cherries also extend to the prevention of diseases such as cancer. This mainly due to the fact that they contain high levels of fiber, carotenoids, anthocyanins and vitamin C. All of these substances play an active role in cancer prevention.

Muscle Sourness

The tart cherries health benefits also extend to problems related to muscle tissue. The cherry juice health benefits are mainly taken into consideration by athletes who encounter difficulties such as these muscle related problems. Simply put, this fruit has anti-inflammatory attributes, reducing pains and damages that muscle tissues may encounter during exhausting exercises.

Heart Diseases

Black cherry juice health benefits, as well as tart cherries health benefits have been cited as active prevention mechanisms against strokes. They improve the fat and glucose metabolism while lowering the dangers of heart diseases.


The health benefits of cherry juice also extend to relief pain of those suffering from arthritis. Many studies have shown that sour cherries contain great levels of anti-inflammatory substances. As a result, daily intake of cherries reduces pain and inflammatory osteoarthritis.

Weight Loss

An interesting discovery regarding the Rainier cherries health benefits involves weight loss. Additional health benefits of cherry juice are related to the low levels of triglycerides, this in turn is related to heart health.

Natural Sleeping Pill

Melatonin is an active compound of cherries. That is why the dried cherries health benefits involve the active role they have in sleep. As a result, the strong antioxidant that comes in the form of melatonin helps people sleep, regulate our internal clock and even regenerates the body.


When the uric acid in our blood gets out of control, gout appears. As such, the struggling metabolism can be helped by the intake of cherries. That is why the health benefits of tart cherry juice also involve gout prevention, due to the high concentration of anti-inflammatory substances. Therefore, the hardships associated with gout, such as pains, swelling and stiffness in joints are prevented due to the ability of cherries to regulate metabolism.

health benefits of cherries

Cherry Recipes

Not only cherries possess many health benefits, but they can also be used in a vast array of dishes. We will present a few simple, easy to make and delicious cherry dishes.

  • Cherry Compote with Goat Cheese – this simple dessert contains one pound of sweet cherries, balsamic vinegar, fresh thyme, goat cheese and a drop of sugar.
  • Cornish Hens with Port Cherry Sauce –  an excellent dinner or lunch dish that contains cornstarch, thyme, dried cherries and port.
  • Black Forest Trifle – another delicious dessert that includes fat-free milk, sugar-free chocolate cake, sugar-free pudding and fat-free whipped topping. This is an excellent dessert for people who want to lose weight or have diabetes, due to its low concentrations of cholesterol, saturated fat and calories.
  • Grilled Chicken with Spicy Cherry Sauce – a great choice for lunch or dinner that is made of sweet cherries, garlic, cumin, red pepper, dry red wine, sweet cherries and chicken.
  • Noodles with Duck Breast, Edamame, and Dried Cherries – this fantastic recipe is made of skinless duck breast, edamame, broad egg noodles and dried sweet cherries.
  • Blue Cheese Chicken Salad – an incredible lunch idea that contains olive oil, shallots, honey, balsamic vinegar, blue cheese, chicken, sweet cherries, orange juice topping and spinach.
  • Pike Place Market Salad – another delightful salad made of champagne vinegar, blue cheese, shallot, caramelized walnuts, any lettuce and sweet cherries.
  • Roasted Cherries with Cocoa Mocha Granita – an excellent frozen dessert made of kirsch, lemon juice, sweet cherries, condensed milk, vanilla, almonds, cocoa, sugar, and coffee.
  • Cherry Ginger Scones – an excellent dessert for those who want to lose weight. It is made of whole wheat pastry flour, rolled oats and dry cherries.
  • Almond Cereal Bars – a fast and healthy breakfast, these bars are made of cereal, nuts and various fruits, including cherries.
  • Cherry Chocolate Sundae with Spiced Almond Praline – an incredible dessert that uses hints of red pepper to increase the overall flavor. It contains maple syrup, dark chocolate, English toffee and cherries.

The health benefits of cherries are obvious. A natural antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, this fruit is known to prevent diseases such as arthritis and cancer. The fact that this versatile fruit can be used in a vast array of dishes, not only desserts, makes it even more pleasing and practical. We hope this article proved useful and if there are any questions feel free to let us know in the comment section below.

Image Sources: 1, 2.

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Time is a commodity fewer and fewer people have these days. In addition to that, many of us are forced to spend many hours per day on the road, in our cars. As a result we have less time to take care of us and our dear ones. Nutrition has and always will be a major factor in a person’s health. But being on the run most of the time, deters us from eating proper healthy food, thus we often eat junk food. Nevertheless, we wondered what are the healthiest fast food options out there and decided to share our results.

The results were chosen on a few criteria. First of all, we looked after healthy dishes that are being sold in fast food restaurant. Afterwards, we looked into the ingredients used to prepare these dishes. In the end, we believe the results will both amaze as well as please many people, we know we were.

healthiest fast food

1. Taco Del Mar

Everybody wishes to remain fit and look good after they reach 50. A decisive factor in looking good in senior years is nutrition. A good diet involving fish, vegetables and fruits is a rejuvenating instrument. And here comes Taco Del Mar. What impressed us most is the straying from the traditional part in this fast food chain. They replaced beef and chicken with fresh ingredients and fish. Of course, most of their restaurants still comercialize chicken burrito, but as opposed to other chains, their chicken burrito only has 320 calories. In addition, they also sell whole wheat tortillas as an alternative for burritos. Another aspect we love is the fact that they bake fish and taco shells instead of frying them, thus allowing these dishes to maintain their nutritional value. The frying process drains nutrients out of the respective dish.

2. Panera Bread

The next entry in our list surprised us with its variety. Panera Bread has a wide and diverse menu. Ranging from half size soups, sandwiches with whole wheat grain bread, salads and even baked chips, there is something for everyone. Even kids can choose from yogurts, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches or grilled cheese sandwiches and even fruits. The fact that the restaurant chain has over 1,230 locations comes as no surprise, as its popularity is ever more growing. Another thing that we like is the fact that products such the chicken is hormon free, which in all honesty is a rarity for many fast food chains.

3. Noodles and Company

Another fast food chain that has specialized in organic, hormone free products is Noodles and Company. Some of its dishes contain as less as 250 calories, which is a rarity for a noodle bowl with beef. We also like the fact that the restaurant has three main styles of dishes from which people can choose from, and each style can be further personalized. You basically choose what to eat, instead of ordering from a pre-ordaned menu. As a result, the fast food chain has the Asian, Mediteranean and American styles that are absolutely amazing.

4. Atlanta Bread

Ever dreamed of a muffin with let’s say only 200 calories? Well now it’s possible at Atlanta Bread. They are not only specialized in low calorie muffins, but also offer whole grain bread, soups, salads and a variety of sandwiches including paninis. Their side dishes mainly consist of corn salads and fire roasted black beans. So if you are watching for your waist we truly recommend this restaurant.

5. Jasons Deli

Wish to truly eat healthy at a fast food joint? Then try Jasons Deli. With one fifth organic ingredients, this fast food chain is specialized in healthy sandwiches and salads. Some of its most famous ingredients are whole wheat wraps, blue corn tortilla chips, greens and spinach.

6. Chipotle

Chipotle is an amazing fast food chains for its commitment to use organic, hormone and antibiotic free ingredients. Another amazing aspect is that it uses ingredients from local suplier, which is a pretty difficult task considering it has more than 800 locations. Furthermore, it allows customers to create their own burritos, tacos or salads. As a result many of its entrees are low in sodium and customers are free to eat their own creations. This is truly one of the healthiest fast food chains out there.

7. Corner Bakery Cafe

One of the healthiest fast food chains due to their unique breakfast menu, the Corner Bakery Cafe has a highly specialized and diverse list of dishes. Some breakfast dishes contain as less as 260 calories. In addition to breakfast dishes they also serve, sandwiches, salad and soups. Their favourite ingredients are whole grains, lean meats, vegetables, low fat yogurt, fruits and skim milk. Too bad it only has 111 locations.

8. Einstein Bros. Bagels

Einstein Bros. Bagels has employed an interesting trick that makes it one of the healthiest fast food chains. Even tough bagels contain many carbs, their hummus, peanut butter or low fat shmears do not however.  Fibers are really important in a breakfast and as a result they offer bagels containing 4 grams of fibers. In addition to their specialties, the fast food chain also offers salads and fruit salads.

Healthiest Fast Food

So there you have it, a list of some of the healthiest fast food chains around. When having to maintain a diet, or just trying to eat healthy there are many aspects that must be taken into consideration. For starters, most of us eat relatively healthy, yet we use many condiments in our dishes. Condiments are a great source of fats and calories. Take into consideration mayonnaise or oil based sauces.

Of course side dishes also can be high in fats and calories. So try to replace French fries and onion rings with salads that are not soaked in dressings. Dressings are also sources of salts, sugars, sodium, fats and calories. Another thing most of us fail to realize is that sodas are bassicaly liquid sugar. As a result we intake drinks without nutrients that do not even quench our thirst and instead aggravates it.

Eating healthy, especially in our day and age, is no easy thing. Yet there are plenty of alternatives. Thank you for reading our article on “What are the Healthiest Fast Food Options Out There?” and feel free to let us know if we failed to mention a healthy fast food chain, in the comment section below.

Image Sources: 1, 2

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An active life, from going to work or school, doing sports or simply being on the run most of the day, can show its strains on the human body. Simply put we need to have a regular intake of calories so our bodies can replenish the energy used. As a result we wished to tackle the “How Many Calories do I Need a Day?” issue. We hope our article will provide a few useful answers.

how many calories do i need a day

What are calories?

Before we go any further we have to understand what calories are. The term is used to describe two units of energy. The first one, also know as small calorie or gram calorie, represents the amount of energy used to raise the temperature of one gram of water by one degree Celsius at a pressure of one atmosphere. The next term, known as food calorie, represents the amount of energy needed to raise the temperature of one kilogram of water by one degree Celsius.

These units of measurement have, in the metric system, been replaced by the joule. Nevertheles, the large calorie is still used as a unit of food energy and the small calorie is used in chemistry for measurements. The term ‘calorie’ has been coined by Nicolas Clement in 1824. It was used as unit of heat and was included in French and English dictionaries between 1841 and 1867. The term originates from Latin, where ‘calor’ meant ‘heat’.

In the context of nutrition, the International System of Units labeled the kilojoule as the unit of food energy. However, the term kilocalorie is commonly used as a value for nutritional energy. In consequence, the expressions ‘calories per serving’ or ‘kilocalories per 100g” are often used to express specific energy or energy density figures. In the end, “calories per day” is the expression used for nutritional requirements or intakes.

How Many Calories do I Need a Day?

The answer to ‘how many calories do I need a day’ is quite complex. It depends on a multitude of factors such as age, size, height, sex, lifestyle and general health. Simply put, a young adult requires far more calories than an elderly person for example.

Another interesting aspect in the ‘how many calories do I need per day’ matter is related to how we eat. A team of scientists from the Purdue University discovered that actions such as chewing food, highly impacts the amount of calories that gets into our system.

If you wish to know how many calories do you need a day then the recommended levels are around 2.700 for men and 2.200 for women. Nearly 20% of the energy used throughout a day is used for brain metabolism alone. This explains why we feel fatigue and an increased desire to eat when we have difficult tasks that involve mental processes.

Nutritionists advise us that a regular intake of 500 calories per day consisting of fruits and vegetables can satisfy hunger for a longer period of time than the same amount of calories consisting of snack foods. In addition to that, fruits ad vegetables do a much better job at maintaining optimal health levels. By doing so many, people who asked themselves “how many calories do I have to burn a day” to lose weight got exceptional results.

If you wish to know more on how many calories do you need a day, another crucial aspect is the lifestyle we have. To learn how many calories do I need a day we must also divide gender and age groups into three different quotas of physical activity. The groups are: sedentary lifestyle, moderately active lifestyle and active lifestyle.

how many calories do i need a day

Sedentary Lifestyle

This category involves little to no physical activity. If a person does little physical activity then that person may instead appeal to a small trick, nutritionists advise us. The breakfast, as we all know, is the most important meal during the day. In other words, a breakfast that contains 700 calories is perfect for losing weight, reducing the risk of diabetes, heart diseases and high cholesterol. For men and women in the age groups of 19-30 the levels of calories needed per day is 2.000 for women and 2.400 for men.

Moderately Active Lifestyle

If a person wishes to know ‘how many calories do I need a day’ when a moderately active lifestyle is involved then the answer would be between 2.600-2.800 for men and 2.000-2.200 for women. This is true for age groups between 19-30 years old. A moderately active lifestyle means that a person engages in phisical activity equivalent to walking 1.5-3 miles per day alongside regular day to day activities.

Active Lifestyle

For people in this category the intake of calories is significantly higher. For men the regular intake of calories per day should be of 3,000. For women instead the level should be of 2,400. An active lifestyle includes regular phisical activities equivalet to walking more than 3 miles per day alongside regular day to day activities.

For men and women between 31-50 years old the answer to ‘how many calories do I need to eat a day’ is between 2.000 for women and 2.400-2.600 for men respectively. These levels are for people who are engaged in moderately active lifestyles.

If a person wishes to know ‘how many calories do I need to burn a day’ then the answer again is quite complex. A series of factors have to be taken into consideration from lifestyle to overall health. Because there are no two people alike, it is generally a good idea to consult a nutritionist first. After a series of tests, the nutritionist can advise on what is the ideal level of calories to burn per day.

how many calories do i need a day

So in conclusion, when dealing with issues such as ‘how many calories do I need in a day’ the answer can vary. Gender, age, lifestyles, height, size and overall general health are the main factors. Another important aspect when trying to learn what is the ideal body weight is largely dependant on other factors. Age is again present while bone density and muscle fat ratio are also important factors.

This brings to an end our article on “How many calories do I need a day”. We hope it proved to be most informative and useful in deciding what is the best course of action in this issue. We do however, adivse on consulting a specialist, such as a nutritionist, in this matter. The expertise can provide additional insight.

Image Sources: 1, 2, 3

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Is apple cider vinegar good for you? Well, it certainly is! There are so many ACV health benefits acknowledged by people as a result of diverse apple cider vinegar uses, that it would take the length of a book to feature them all. ACV is such a surprising and versatile product! From cleansing and detoxifying effects to other medical remedies, from hygienic purposes to garden care and cooking uses, apple cider vinegar seems to be beneficial for almost anything you can think of.

The information you’ll fin in this post touches on the following aspects:

  • Apple Cider Vinegar Health Benefits throughout History.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar Uses for Skin.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar Uses for Hair.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar Uses for Weight Loss.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar Drinking Diet Recommendations.
  • Surprising Apple Cider Vinegar Uses Around the House.

ACV bottle for amazing apple cider vinegar uses

Apple Cider Vinegar Uses Throughout History

Just a quick historical fact to start with, vinegar was discovered 7000 years ago.  Soon after, people realized that this miraculous aliment was the result of grape juice left unattended. And so the long list of vinegar uses began.

Among the first medical recorded vinegar health benefits, it appears that Hippocrates used it to treat wounds. For centuries then practitioners have been using it in diverse forms of treatment. To mention just a few, vinegar was believed to cure diabetes, help with stomach aches and even treat poison ivy rash.

Nowadays, apple cider vinegar, which is made exclusively from apples, is a multipurpose product. It is both an acidic condiment used in cooking, as well as a drinkable aliment and natural homemade remedy for a great number of conditions. Among the most popular brands in the US, there’s Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar. People say they use it for skin as a toner solution as it balances the PH level.

As regards contemporary apple cider vinegar health benefits, the studies have showed that the slow fermentation process makes it antioxidant and antimicrobial. During the period of fermentation there is a non-toxic slime forming at the top of it. This is an amino-acid-based substance, composed of yeast and what is known as the ‘vinegar’s mother’ – an acetic acid bacteria.

Next, let’s take a look at the most popular and beneficial apple cider vinegar uses.

Health & Beauty: How to Use Apple Cider Vinegar for Weight Loss

The apple cider vinegar uses for weight loss are affordable, healthy, and easier to put into practice than you think. Here is what this 100% organic product can do if consumed in the morning before breakfast:

  • ACV curbs the appetite.
  • ACV helps you with getting rid of the excess fluids.
  • ACV burns fats.

However, to keep the doctor away, any apple cider vinegar diet should be moderate. A balanced life is a happy life. So don’t expect to get fitness result in a matter of days. Any apple cider vinegar diet requires at least 12 weeks, but is totally worth the time and effort. ACV is beneficial in the long run, influencing your energy level and boosting your immune system. Plus, there are so many other stunning apple cider vinegar health benefits to take into account.

  • It fights diabetes by lowering the blood sugar level.
  • It takes care of your heart by reducing blood pressure.
  • It protects the body against cancer.
  • It helps with digestion and can sooth intestinal spasms.
  • It cures sore throat due to its antibacterial properties.

Skin Care: How to Use Apple Cider Vinegar for Acne

There are multiple surprising apple cider vinegar uses for skin too. The health benefits of apple cider vinegar in this case vary from being a skin ailment for sunburn and poison ivy rash to treating bug bites and removing warts.  apple cider vinegar uses for skin

As regards apple cider vinegar uses for acne, it has impressive effects as a skin toner. Always use organic, unfiltered products. You also can combine the solution with essential oils. For best results, poor one part of apple cider vinegar to three parts of water and poor a little of the composition on a cotton bad. Apply it to your skin twice a day, after you wash your face and leave it to dry.

So, if you are looking for positive skin changes, apple cider vinegar can do the trick for you.

Hair Care: How to Use Apple Cider Vinegar on Hair

If you wonder how to use apple cider vinegar on hair, note that this is one the most amazing and low-cost apple cider vinegar health benefits for your capillary treasure.

Here is what to try out for the health and beauty of your hair. Rinse your hair with ACV every week. Remember to dilute it in water. The recommended ratio is: one-third cup of apple cider vinegar for four water cups.

You can also use ACV against dandruff. Mix half cup of vinegar with half cup of water. Apply it over your head, use a towel to wrap around your head and leave it like that about an hour. Rinse and repeat the process at least twice a week until you notice the improvement.

How to Drink Apple Cider Vinegar for Surprising Health Benefits and What to Be Careful With

ACV is extremely beneficial for the immune system. However, there are certain categories of people who need to be careful with using it too much in alimentation. Let’s not forget that vinegar is an acidic aliment. It can give your health a boost, but it can also be harmful for people with stomach diseases.  Prior to drinking apple cider vinegar or starting an apple cider vinegar diet it is best to refer your doctor.

ACV is a natural product used in many recipes made to boost the level of energy and balance, at the same time, blood pressure. Also, cleansing is another apple cider vinegar health benefit to consider. Consumed in the morning, it will help you lower the cholesterol level, increase metabolism and suppress appetite. Always dilute it in water before drinking it. Enjoy the apple cider vinegar uses and natural remedies in moderation!

a glass of apple cider vinegar to enjoy

Stunning Hygiene Apple Cider Vinegar Uses

Apart from being a skin toner, weight loss remedy, hair cleanser and so on, apple cider vinegar uses make for other unexpected labels for this aliment.

Apparently you can use ACV in your kitchen, and not for cooking, but for household hygiene purposes. Yes, vinegar is a natural cleanser. You can use it to clean products and appliances, as well as foods. Used on fruits and veggies it will remove certain bacteria. According to studies, it apple cider vinegar is effective against the nasty salmonella.

Also, ACV can be used to control weeds in your garden, as it is part of many herbicide formulas. Used together with soap, orange oil, and molasses it makes an herbicide that will kill unwanted weeds.

Finally, whether you use it around your home, in food, on ski or hair, or you simply drink it as a natural remedy, you can make your own raw apple cider vinegar. Buy organic apples and do a bit of research before starting with the fermentation process.

I hope my post is useful for those interested in the wonderful apple cider vinegar uses and benefits. For any questions, suggestions or ideas, please leave a message in the comment section below.

Image Sources: 1, 2, 3.

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Can you recognize falsehood in anyone’s behavior or words? How many times you wished you had known how to read the signs of dishonesty? Whether you are a body language expert or not, this post will show you how to smell a liar in 3 steps. ‘How can you tell if someone is lying?’ will no longer be a mystery for you once you get to understand the mindset of such person.

Learn more about the most common lying detection techniques used by federal agents, psychologists and other kinds of investigators. Prevent being deceived, cheated or even defrauded.

Most lie detection experts take into consideration a series of body language signs and other signals until making a guess on whether someone says or hides the truth. Let’s have a look at the most common tricks one can use to test if someone is being honest or not.

#1. Watch the Body Language of Your Subject

Look ‘at’ His/ Her Eyes

You cannot read someone’s mind, but you can tell if someone conceals the truth by observing his or her body language, and especially the eyes.  Most liars find it difficult to establish eye contact.

Observe Micro Expressions

As defined by Paul Ekman, pre-eminent psychologist and expert in nonverbal behavior, micro expressions are brief facial glimpses that last only a fraction of a second. These are truly revealing if you know how to interpret them.

How can these facial signs indicate if someone is lying to you? Well, everyone who watched the famous ‘Lye to Me’ TV Series can guess how. If you hear someone talking enthusiastically about something but you observe a slight pulling down of his or her lips corners, for instance, this may mean the exact opposite of what is verbally conveyed.

Have a look at the micro expressions description below to see how these glimpses can make a liar’s mask slip off.

how to tell if someone is lying chart

For a more in-depth look at how micro expressions betray people when they lie, check out this interesting article on Blifaloo.

Other Non-Verbal Tell-Tale Signs of Lying

Another common sign is liars’ attempt to cover their mouth or nervously touch their face in an unconscious effort to hide their action.

#2. Pay Close Attention to Their Story

Spot the Inconsistencies

In a report resuming a study conducted about compulsive lying, psychology professor Adrian Raine declared: “We looked for things like inconsistencies in their stories about occupation, education, crimes and family background”. People lying have a tendency towards not being consistent in what they say. So the trick is to be attentive at the sequence of things they talk about.

Too many details?

Apart from inconsistencies, too many details may be a sign of plotting an untruthful story too. Sometimes people hiding the truth avoid denying something directly, making up answers that have little to do with the subject of your question. That is why they tend to add many details so to avoid any uncomfortable pauses.

Observe their Language

You can determine if someone is lying by the words they tend to use as well. Most commonly, someone who’s not being honest will use your words to answer a questions. How many times you’ve asked your kid: ‘Did you eat your lunch?’ and the answer was: ‘Yes, I ate my lunch’?

Also, it appears that rapid, direct statements are more likely to be truthful than complex statements. For instance ‘I haven’t’ is considered more spontaneous and thus more honest than ‘No, I have not…’.

The tone of an assumed liar can also be a tell-tale sign of hiding the truth. According to experts in statement analysis, truthful statement are more emphasized in speech. It is all about the difference between a natural and monotonous tone.

Ask Unexpected Questions

Another trick to catch a liar in action is ask him or her the same question more than twice to see if you receive the same answer. Normally, someone lying forgets what he or she previously said.

Changing the subject of the conversation is another useful trick. Someone lying will be thrilled by not being confronted anymore with his guilty statements. Often they would use anything to distract you as well, like a joke or sarcasm.

Make Them Retell the Story Backwards

According to psychologists, people can only retell real stories and recall real events in a chronological order. That is why most liars will be unable to reverse the timeline of the same story. This is a well-known trick and one of the most efficient. How can you tell if someone is lying? Just make them retell everything backwards.

#3. Observe Their Attitude

Is There a Change in Behavior?

The most difficult thing for a liar is to control his or her emotions. Fake emotions and inexpressive faces as compared with what and how they speak are the tell-tale signs of such a behavior.

Can You Feel an Abnormal Nervousness?

People hiding something tend to be quite defensive. Here are some indicators of such habit:

  • Shifting from one foot to another.
  • Turning their head away so to avoid eye contact.
  • Place objects between you and them.

Of course, there are many other signals you can spot at people who are guilty of lying. The reverse is valid as well: some of the signs mentioned above can be encountered at people who are honest, but nervous in your presence. All these aspects should be compared to how a person normally and naturally is and reacts on a daily basis.

Also, once you identify a liar, try not to be very judgemental. Some lie to attract attention, but others suffer from what is called ‘compulsive lying’, which is a serious medical condition. Pathological lying is grounded or closely connected with other conditions as well like alcoholism, drug addiction or anorexia. There are liars who thus need guidance and help, rather than critics.

I hope my post answered to ‘how can you tell if someone is lying’. For any questions or comments you make have, please don’y hesitate to leave me a message in the comment section below. Thanks!

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Colors seem to govern all forms of non-verbal communication representing the most instantaneous and convenient method of conveying a message. Along with a multitude of myths and esoteric theories related to their symbolism and function, there’s a whole area of science dedicated to color psychology. What has triggered the attention of various researchers?  In this post we want to take a closer look at the psychological meanings and effects of colors as revealed by recent studies and experiments.

How Do Companies Use Color Psychology in Marketing?

As researchers have proven that different color schemes appeal more to one type of audience than they do to another, other fields of activity have started to pay more attention to this aspect. Color psychology is massively used in marketing and advertising strategy as colors prove to be powerful marketing triggers.

Do colors really influence what people buy? Well, according to recent research, 84% of consumers choose products based on color, citing it as the primary reason they buy a particular item. No wonder big brands master the psychology of colors to influence your buying behavior when 93% of consumers look at the visual appearance when they buy a product, while 6% look at texture and only 1% make decisions based on sound and smell.

color psychology identity branding

Researchers have shown that colors increase brand recognition as colorful ads are almost twice more read than ads in black and white. They also believe that colors can considerably improve comprehension and learning as well.

Whether they are used for products or displayed in stores, colors are an extremely powerful means of catching one’s eye and call to action. Although it is simple to make assumptions, the fact is that there is an entire body of studies companies use to influence customers decisions. Apart from universal meanings associated to colors, they pay careful attention to cultural differences as well.

For instance, a study looking at color emotion and preferences in Chinese and British participants has shown that their like-dislike scale differs significantly. That is why it is important for companies to consider such aspects as color preference when it comes to their targeted consumers. The argument appeals to common sense: who would buy anything in a color one dislikes?

How Do We Generally Perceive Colors?

Before getting into detail as regards colors’ psychological meaning and function in marketing strategies, let’s see how they are generally perceived by the human eye and mind.

Defined as the attribute possessed by an object of creating different sensations on the eye as a result of the way it reflects or emits light, colors are perceived at three levels: physically, physiologically and psychologically. Although our perception of color is subjective, both on a cultural and individual level, it seems that many color effects and functions are universal. Tests have indicated that the perception of colors does not differ significantly in terms of gender. Men and women prefer or dislike quite the same spectrum of colors.

Also, we generally perceive them to be either cool, warm or neutral. Sadly, there are people who suffer from color blindness which is a vision disability which makes it impossible to distinguish all or some colors.

They are mainly divided in primary (red, blue, yellow) and secondary colors (orange, green, purple). The difference between them is that the secondary ones can be achieved by mixing two primary colors, while the primary ones cannot form by mixing any other color.

As we are surrounded by them everywhere, let’s have a look at their symbolism, function, and effects both from a psychological and marketing perspective.

RED Color Psychology

The red color creates a sense of urgency, reason why it is widely used in sales.

Emotional Effects:

  • Increases passion and energy levels.
  • Symbolizes love and danger.
  • Evokes powerful emotions.
  • Increases heart rate.

Marketing Function:

  • Attracts impulsive shoppers.
  • Can quickly focus attention.
  • Encourages appetite.

Red is popular for food, tech, auto, agriculture and heart-related brands and logos like Coca Cola, Kellogg’s, Netflix, Pinterest, Virgin, Red Bull, American Heart Association etc.

BLUE Color Psychology

Blue is a non-invasive color and the least gender-specific color. It creates a sensation of trust and security.

Emotional Effects and Symbolism:

  • Increases productivity.
  • Symbolizes loyalty.
  • It is associated with calm and peace, as well as with communication skills.
  • Aids intuition.
  • Curbs appetite.

Marketing Function:

  • Creates a sense of security.

The blue color is popular for food, energy, finance, tech, agriculture and health care brands like Walmart, Pro-cut, British Gas, British Air Lines, Ps, as well as for social media channels and chat logos like Facebook, Skype and Twitter.

YELLOW Color Psychology

Yellow is used to grab attention as it is the first color perceived by the retina.

Emotional Effects and Symbolism:

  • Represents youthfulness.
  • Shows clarity.
  • Increases optimism and cheerfulness.
  • Activates memory.
  • Can strain eyes.

Marketing Function:

  • Catches the eye of window shoppers.

Yellow is popular for food, energy and household brand logos like DHL, Ikea, Best Buy, Shell, Nikon, Mc Donald’s.

ORANGE Color Psychology

Orange is the color that creates a call to action.

Emotional Effects and Symbolism:

  • Reflects excitement and vitality.
  • Stimulates appetite cautions.
  • Signifies aggression.

Marketing Function:

  • Invites people to subscribe, buy or sell.

Orange is popular for tech and finance brands and health care logos like GSK (GlaxoSmithKline), Master Card, Bitly, Mozilla Firefox.

PURPLE Color Psychology

Purple is a calming color, often used for beauty products.

Emotional Function:

  • Indicates wealth and wisdom.
  • Creates a sense of calm.
  • Offers a sense of spirituality as it is associated with the supreme chakra in Buddhist healing practices.
  • Encourages creativity.

Marketing Function:

  • Suggests sophistication and royalty.
  • Creates a sense of mystery.

Purple is popular for finance, travel, tech, health care and fashion-related brands and logos like The Breast Cancer Research Foundation, Cosmopolitan, Lufthansa.

GREEN color Psychology

The green color is used for its relaxing and soothing effects.

Emotional Effects and Symbolism:

  • Associated with health and freshness.
  • Represents growth and nature.
  • Relaxes mentally and physically.
  • Alleviates depression.
  • Dark green associates wealth.
  • Light green encourages serenity.
  • Offers a sense of self-control.

Marketing Function:

  • Green induces a sense of relaxation to customers in stores.
  • Connected to environmentalism.

Green color is popular for energy, finance, household, tech and food brands like Starbucks, Kick Starter, HTC, BP, Holyday Inn.

Neutral colors like black, brown and white do not attract that much attention like primary and secondary colors, but they are also used to convey particular messages and moods.

BLACK Color Psychology

Black is an authoritative and powerful color, denoting prestige and sophistication.

Emotional Effects and Symbolism:

  • Suggests restful emptiness.
  • Implies weight.
  • Makes one feel inconspicuous.

Marketing Function:

  • Used to market luxury products.
  • Suggests sleekness and timelessness.

Black is popular for tech, fashion and auto brands like Louis Vuitton, Lexus, Rolex, Swarovski.

WHITE Color Psychology

In most cultures, white is associated with peace and a sense of purity.

Emotional Effects and Symbolism:

  • Suggests purity and innocence.
  • Symbolizes nobility.
  • Represents safety and happiness.
  • Aids mental clarity.

Marketing Function:

  • Suggests cleanliness.
  • Gives a sense of refinement.
  • Indicates space and openness.
  • Encourages the clearing of clutter

White is popular for health care and sport equipment brands, as well as for child related business like Mirillis, Adidas, Nike.

BROWN Color Psychology

Brown color symbolizes simplicity, strength and durability.

Emotional Effects and Symbolism:

  • Represents reliability.
  • Creates a sense of strength.
  • Indicates straightforwardness.
  • Can remind people of dirt (negative effect).

Marketing Function:

  • Symbolizes durability due to its association with Earth.
  • Implies practicality.
  • Can suggest boredom.

Brown is popular for fashion, tech, auto and agriculture brands like UPS, Lavazza, Double Tree, Instagram.

If you wish to find out more about the connection between colors and spiritual openness and development, check out our post on chakra symbolism and functions.

How Do Colors Influence Your Mood?

Have you ever thought of how the color you choose to wear in the morning affects your mood during the day? Is there any difference between wearing a pink shirt and a grey one? What about the color you paint your room?

Studies reveal that between 62% and 90% of people’s subconscious judgements made about an environment within 90 seconds are based on color. For this reason we tend to use colors to describe different moods and experiences.

However, the key to achieve results in terms of positive effects is constancy. For instance, if you are looking to improve your creative skills, wear purple. Also, if you feel distressed, surround yourself with green objects which will subconsciously suggest a state of calm and peacefulness.

Wonder what the color you pick as your favorite says about you? A fun and easy, although not fully reliable way to find out what your favorite color indicates about yourself is a color quiz or a color psychology test. You can find a bunch of these online.

How could we better resume our article on color psychology than by means of a colorful infographic? Treat your eyes with our visual and comprehensive guide on the psychology of colors.


Image Source: 1

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Whether you are deeply spiritual or, by contrary, more grounded in the ‘physical’, mundane and materialistic world, you have probably heard about chakras. Equally curious, we are here to answer to ‘what are chakras?’ and discover more about this intriguing subject. Chakra is a term currently used in yoga, meditation and healing practices to refer to circles or centers of energy which align the spine, from the base to the head. Let’s find out more in the sections below.

What are Chakras?

what are chakras - the seven chakras

Chakras are points of energy located in our subtle body (which coexists with our physical body). The term comes from the Sanskrit language, and it literally means ‘wheel’, ‘circle’, ‘cycle’ or ‘turning’.

The concept and meanings of chakra are rooted in Hindu traditions, but its symbolism also features in yogic and tantric practices of Buddhism. They are associates with different colors, body sites, crystals, and deities.

There are seven chakras connected to both our physical and psychological properties and functions. Below you will find a short description for each chakra, along with its name in Sanskrit, meaning, symbol, function, corresponding color, deity and associated verb/ action.

1. Root Chakra or Muladhara in Sanskrit (English: ‘root support’)

The Root Chakra symbol

Meaning: Also called Base chakra, this is a chakra of matter (together with the next two chakras), representing our foundation and sense of being grounded. This chakra is about power.

Symbol: a red lotus with four petals.

Location: base of the spine (coccygeal region).

Function: The Root Chakra governs our instincts, sexuality and sense of stability and security.

Corresponding Color: Red.

Corresponding Deity: Ganesh.

Associated Animal: Elephant.

Associated Verb/ Action: I am.


2. Splenic Chakra or Svadhishthana in Sanskrit (English: ‘one’s own base’)

 the splenic chakra or sacral chakra symbol

Meaning: Also known as sacral chakra, this center of energy controls our connection with others. It is about creativity and exploration.

Symbol: white lotus with orange petals and a crescent moon within.

Location: around and slightly above the pelvis (lower abdomen).

Function: From a physical point of view, the Splenic chakra governs reproduction, being our sexual center. Psychologically, it is said to influence our creative expression and spiritual level. It also relates to enthusiasm and pleasure, referring to relations and basic needs.

Corresponding Color: Orange.

Corresponding Deity: Brahma.

Associated Animal: the Crocodile.

Associated Verb/ Action: I Feel.

3. Solar Plexus Chakra or Manipura in Sanskrit (English: ‘Jewel City’)

the Solar Plexus Chakra symbol

Meaning: Also called Navel Chakra, the Solar Plexus Chakra refers to our ability to control our life and confidence level. It is about intellect and (self-) perception.

Symbol: a yellow triangle with ten petals pointing downwards.

Location: navel area (upper abdomen).

Function: Due to its location, the Solar Plexus Chakra is said to influence our digestive and metabolic system, and the way food is transformed into energy for the well-function of our body. The main mental aspects governed by this chakra are issues of personal awareness, assertion and power, confidence, fear, and expansiveness. Spiritually, it affects all matters of personal growth.

Corresponding Color: Yellow.

Corresponding Deity: Agni.

Associated Verb/ Action: I Do.


4. Heart Chakra or Anahata in Sanskrit (English: ‘unstruck’)

the heart chakra symbol

Meaning: The Heart Chakra is about love, affection and inner peace. As the fourth chakra, located between lower energy centers of matter and upper energy points of spirit, it connects both dimensions of reality. This chakra refers to the connection between body, mind, soul and spirit.

Symbol: circular green flower with twelve petals, symbolizing the union between masculine and feminine, male and female.

Location: the chestheart area.

Function: The Heart chakra physically governs the immune system and level of stress. Emotionally, its meaning is related to emotions covering the spectrum of love: compassion, passion, devotion, tenderness, well-being. Once this chakra is open, the individual is able to feel unconditional love for himself or herself, and for others as well.

Corresponding Color: Green.

Corresponding Deity: Ishana Rudra Shiva.

Associated Verb/ Action: I Love.

5. Throat Chakra or Vishuddha in Sanskrit (English: ‘especially pure’)

the throat chakra symbol

Meaning: The Throat Chakra, also called Vishuddhi, is about our ability to express ourselves. It regards the clarity of self-expression.

Symbol: a white circle woth a silver crescent within it, and 16 pale blue petals.

Location: mouth and neck – the throat area.

Function: The Throat chakra governs the aspect of communication and verbal expression. Physically, it affects the function of the thyroid, a gland producing the hormone responsible for growth. Spiritually, this chakra influences independence, security and personal development, while mentally refers to the fluency and clarity of our thoughts and our ability to express them.

Corresponding Color: Blue.

Corresponding Deity: Dyaus.

Associated Verb/ Action: I Speak.

Note: In Tibetan Buddhist theory, this chakra is associated with the red color and has a considerable role in the practice of lucid dreaming.

6. Third Eye Chakra or Ajna in Sanskrit (English: ‘command’)

the Third Eye Chakra

Meaning: Also called the Brow Chakra, the Third Eye Chakra is about insight and intuition. Both in Hinduism and Buddhism, it represents the unity between light and dark, male and female, and the end of duality between matter and spirit. It reflects deep levels of perception.

Symbol: violet lotus with two petals.

Location: pineal gland; the forehead area, between eyebrows.

Function: The Third Eye Chakra is a superior chakra governing the inner guidance and peace. This energy point affects our spiritual openness and clarity of thoughts. Spiritually, it influences aspects of consciousness, dream state and vizionariness.

Corresponding Colors: Indigo.

Corresponding Deity: Ardhanarishvara.

Associated Verb/ Action: I See.

7. Crown Chakra or Sahasrara in Sanskrit (English: ‘thousand-petaled’)

The Crown chakra symbol

Meaning: The Crown chakra is the highest center of energy in our body and is all about spiritual connection, cosmic awareness and enlightenment.

Symbol: a lotus with one thousand petals

Location: top of the head.

Function: The Crown Chakra physically governs our central nervous system, while mentally leads to meditation practices, which play an essential role in the physical basis of emotional action and consciousness. This chakra helps acquire inner knowledge and wisdom in a state of pure bliss, as well as a sense of unity with universal energies.

Corresponding Color: Violet.

Corresponding Deity: Dhruva

Associated Verb/ Action: I Know.

What are Chakra Stones?

As mentioned above, each chakra has a corresponding body part, color, mythological deity and religious symbolism. In current spiritual practices, these are also associated with stones that carry healing powers. The chakra stones are actually crystals that help balancing our energies according to the meaning and function of each chakra. Here are a few crystals you could use for each energy center in your subtle body, from top to bottom:

Crown Chakra: Amethyst, White Topaz, White Calcite.

Third Eye Chakra: Lapis Lazuli, Sugilite, Azurite.

Throat Chakra: Blue Calcite, Blue Turquoise, Angelite.

Heart Chakra: Green Calcite, Jade, Rose Quartz, Tourmaline, Aventurine.

Solar Plexus Chakra: Citrine, Tiger’s Eye, Yellow Jasper, Golden Calcite.

Sacral Chakra: Orange Calcite, Carnelian.

Root Chakra: Red Zincite, Garnet, Red Jasper, Smoky Quartz.

Chakras: Key-Aspects

what are chakras - key-aspects

Image Sources: Chakra Symbols, 2, 3

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Black or white, French, Italian or Irish, with sugar or sweeteners, green or decaf, coffee is one of the best-loved beverages worldwide. But is coffee good for you? Who could resist its heavenly taste and smell in the morning anyway? This article is a continuation to another post on the health benefits of coffee. Stay with us to discover more about both good and bad effects coffee consumption has upon your mind and body. But first, let’s have a look at the recent history of ideas and studies related to its benefits, side effects and usage.

Is Coffee Good for You?

Apparently, as more than three quarters of the population are stimulated by its properties, a significant number of studies have been initiated in order to discover its effects on both mental and physical health.

coffee grinder, coffee beans and a nice cup of coffee

If the history of coffee goes back in the past for over eleven centuries, the first scientific evidence of coffee knowledge belongs to a 16th century German physician. Since then, myths and interesting facts populated not only cultural, but also medical discourses.

If coffee is good or bad for our health is still a dilemma of our times, only that as technology greatly evolved the research question developed into more specific interrogations like “is coffee good for our heart?”, “is it good for our brain?”, “and what about fighting diseases?”.

What is myth and what is fact about coffee and the prevention of cancer?

Over the last decade a significant amount of studies comprising millions of people suggest that there are no associations between coffee consumption and an increased risk of cancer. On the contrary, in 2013 coffee was linked with the prevention of prostate cancer, while more recent medical research shows that this “black gold” could reduce the risk of skin cancer.

Coffee lovers are entitled to welcome the results of a new report stating its anti-cancer potential, this time referring to the beneficial effect it has on liver function. Diet, Nutrition, Physical Activity and Liver Cancer is the latest medical report linking two essential aspects in the prevention of this terrible disease – sport and alimentation.

Published in March 2015 in partnership the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) and the World Cancer Research Fund’s International Update Project (CUP), this report suggests that, among others, one cup of coffee per day decreases the risk of liver cancer with 14 percent. According to this study, liver cancer is the sixth most common cancer in the world and the second most common cause for death from it.

What is interesting to notice, though, is that while there is a strong evidence of the positive effects on men, for women coffee consumption is not at all significant in liver cancer prevention. “When stratified by sex, the association was significant for men but not for women”, concluded the researchers. Coffee is quite a sexist drink, one might say, but statistics show that liver cancer is, too, a “sexist” disease, being more common in men than women. But women are still a disadvantaged category when it comes to coffee consumption during pregnancy.

Is Coffee Consumption Fighting Cancer?

What is more, as coffee is produced and consumed in a variety of ways, it is difficult for researchers to establish its specific beneficial components. Commenting on their study, researchers say: “No threshold was identified, and there was no evidence regarding specific components of coffee that were attributable to the decreased risk”. However, this analysis on cancer prevention and survival opens up the path for new research in the field.

Coffee preparation is worth keeping an eye on as there are many potential carcinogenic substances that can form during the roasting process, not to mention all the flavored syrups and sauces used in coffee shops. Coffee invented coffee shops, but coffee shops re-invent coffee, and this might not be in the benefit of the consumer.

Is Coffee Good for Your Liver?

Another aspect to take into consideration is that the bad reputation coffee had over the centuries is due to its association with smoking and alcohol consumption. How many people give up coffee after giving up smoking just because there is a too powerful connection between the two habits? But if there is strong evidence that “consuming approximately three or more alcoholic drinks a day is a cause of liver cancer”, and smoking increases the risk of cancer generally, as the researchers point out, there is strong evidence that drinking coffee is linked to a decreased risk of it.

To reduce the risk of illness, it is also essential to eat healthy and be physically active. As a fact, coffee is healthy if limited to 1-3 cups per day, but each individual has its own diet requirements.

green coffee beans - is green coffee good for you?

There are also healthy options when it comes to coffee consumption. We sometimes hear questions like: “is green coffee better than black roasted coffee?” or “how good is green coffee for you really?”. Green coffee beans are coffee beans that have not been roasted. This means that they have a higher level of chlorogenic acid, which gets reduced along the roasting process in case of regular coffee beans. The chlorogenic acid is said to affect the level of blood sugar, contributing to weight loss. Also, green coffee is considered by researchers to have beneficial effects in fighting diabetes and heart diseases among others.

Is Iced Coffee Good for You?

Now that the summer is here, we all love the refreshing effect of iced coffee. But is iced coffee better than hot coffee? Apparently, iced coffee has many benefits as compared to regular coffee. Recent studies show that iced coffee, for instance contributes to a fresher breath, as it inhibits the growth of mouth bacteria and odor. Also, if consumed without sugar before workout, it has a strong impact in fat loss. As compared to hot coffee, iced coffee is also less acid, which is good for our stomach and teeth.

is iced coffee good for you?

Is Coffee Really Good for You?

Last, but not least, even if so many recent studies probe the benefits of coffee consumption, it is important not to omit its potential negative side effects on body function, particularly for people who struggle with digestive problems (coffee is still acidic) or high blood pressure.

Among other negative aspects of coffee consumption, the caffeine contained by this beverage can create insomnia, nausea, nervousness, and in high doses, even headaches. That is why it is essential to consume a safe daily dose of 1 to 2 cups. According to a Mayo Clinic study, up to 400 milligrams of caffeine are said to be safe for most people, amount which is found in about four cups of brewed coffee.

We hope our article provides you with the answers you were searching for ‘why is coffee good for you?’. As much as we love it, coffee remains a product to be considered from an optimist-pessimistic perspective, having both a positive and negative impact on our healthiness. So, let’s enjoy our coffee in moderation!

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Regardless of age, gender and lifestyle, everybody had at least one and everybody hates them. Stabbing or mild, constant or casual, headaches are always inopportune and affect our mood. What causes headaches, how severe are they and how we can treat them according to their type are just a few questions we are going to answer to in this article.

What Causes Headaches?

Headaches are triggered by a variety of factors, from foods to chemicals and other neurological conditions. There are many types of such head and neck disorders, each with its signs and symptoms.

what causes headaches

Most commonly, headaches are classified in primary and secondary. The first type defines a medical condition in itself and includes the tension type headache, sinus headache, migraine and cluster headache, while secondary headaches are defined as the result of another head or neck condition like an injury, trauma or, more serious problems like a tumour. In other words, headaches can be illnesses in themselves or symptoms of other diseases.

what causes headaches - primary type

In order to structure the information as comprehensibly as possible, we’ve chosen to classify headaches by type, duration, intensity and localisation of pain, as well as by association with other medical conditions or external factors.

Classification of Headaches by:

1.      Type of Pain


  • Cluster headaches are the least common, but the worse headaches one can deal with. Characterised by a stabbing pain in and around one eye, this disorder occurs as episodic scenes of severe pain, and its symptoms are tearing, red eyes and nasal congestion. Its causes are unfortunately unknown. As regards treatment options, there are several ways to abort such episodes or to prevent a further attack, such as inhalation of high concentration of oxygen, different types of injectable medication, and even caffeine.
  • Tension headaches are commonly caused by emotional stress and its main feature is a pressure, moderate pain or band-like tightness which is a physiological result of head and neck muscle contraction. People experiencing tension headaches define the pain as a ‘band squeezing the head’. They are recommended to relieve stress as these might become chronic.
  • Throbbing headaches are defined by a pulsating pain.

2.      Duration of Pain

  • Chronic headaches are frequent, recurring headaches characterised by a pain that gets worse over time. According to medical statistics, over 45 million Americans suffer from chronic headaches. They may be caused by brain or skull disorders and can occur even to children.
  • New daily persistent headaches are said to occur for at least four hours every day, 15 days a month for three months. The pain is consistent and is located on one or both sides of head.

3.      Intensity of Pain

  • Ice pick headaches are among the most painful ones, and are easily mistaken with cluster headaches as they usually feel like a single stab or series of stabs in the orbital region. They can also occur around the temporal area or parietal area of the head. Ice peak headaches are known under the name of primary stabbing headaches as well.
  • Migraine headaches are among the most severe and common headaches. Their causes are controversial, not to say unknown. If until recently it was believed that migraines are the result of blood vessel constriction, new studies show that the origin of such pain is a disorder of the central nervous system.

Migraine are characterised by acute pain on one side of the head, possibly on both sides, and are usually accompanied by nausea, dizziness, blurred vision, mental cloudiness and perceptual disturbances such as auras.

Most likely, these headaches are triggered by emotional stress, certain foods and substances such as chocolate, alcohol, processed meat, caffeine, or by bright lights and loud sounds.

Migraines are hereditary which means that if both parent have a migraine history it is likely for their children to develop the same disorder.

  • There is another headache type associated with migraines called ocular headaches, located behind the eyes. Most common feature of such disorder is eye twitching and temporary vision loss. Interestingly, ocular headaches can be prevented with drugs used to treat high blood tension.

4.      Localisation of Pain

  • Sinus headaches are the result of pressure within the sinuses of the skull. The pain in such cases is located behind the forehead or cheekbones. These are part of frontal headaches.
  • Headaches in the back of the head are similar to neck headaches and tension headache.
  • TMJ (temporomandibular joint) headaches are characterised by a pain at temples or in front of ears and are often mistaken with tensions headaches. These two types do not respond to the same treatment. If you experiment such pain, it is better to consult a doctor.
  • Dental headaches are generally secondary headaches caused by dental conditions such as bruxism or TMJ. Bruxism is defined as excessive teeth grinding during night.

5.      Association with other Medical or Neurological Condition, or External Factors

  • Pregnancy headaches are said to be caused by changing hormone levels during pregnancy.
  • Ice cream headaches, typically called ‘brain freeze’, are obviously caused by ice cream, or by any other food or drink which is extremely cold.
  • Caffeine headache are the result of excessive coffee consumption. For instance, if you are used to two cups of coffee every morning, on a day like Saturday, when you are probably not getting the ‘right’ amount of caffeine, you might get up in pain.
  • Cough headache are an unusual type of headaches caused by coughing, sneezing, laughing, or crying. According to Mayo Clinic, primary cough headaches are harmless in comparison to secondary cough headaches which might be the result of severe brain problems and require surgery.
  • Sex headaches are said to be caused by low pressure during sexual activity. As they grow stronger during orgasm, the person experiencing such pain is advised to stop sex.
  • Menstrual headaches have hormonal causes. One of them is the low level of Estrogen before women’s cycles.
  • Exercise headache are caused by strenuous effort during running, tennis, swimming or weightlifting.
  • Early morning headaches are similar to migraines and can be caused by certain substances found in medication waning in your body during sleep.

How to Treat Headaches

It is important to know that not all headaches require medical supervision and treatment. Some of them can be treated through counselling, rest, self-care, and stress management.

Also, more and more studies show that there is a strong connection between headaches and the food we eat. To relieve symptoms, specialists recommend to change our lifestyle and customize our diet according to specific needs.

Dr. Oz, for instance, with the help of Dr. Majid Fotuhi, has created a slideshow with foods and their vitamins that can heal headaches. Here is a breakdown of the information you can find by accessing his website:

Common Types of Headache Vitamins Fighting Headaches Food Containing These Vitamins
Migraine RiboflavinVitamin B2 400 mg daily Quinoa, crimini mushrooms, asparagus, low fat milk
Hormonal headache Magnesium 450 mg daily Spinach, Swiss chard, sweet potato, bananas, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds
Tension  headache Coenzyme Q10 Tuna, eggs, mackerel, broccoli, cauliflower
Cold or Flu-related headache Water-rich fruit Watermelon, strawberries, grapefruit, pineapple

Some headaches do not indicate severe problems, but others require the intervention of a physician. If there are episodes of pain in your head or neck which occur frequently and make you feel dizzy, you should better contact your doc and ask for expert advice.

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Now that the strawberry season is here, bottle up some wine to remind you of spring. Follow our homemade easy and cheap strawberry wine recipe for a sparkling and refreshing result. This flavored springy beverage will taste better than any expensive wines you might have in mind. Let’s get started!

Best Strawberry Wine Recipe

Are you ready to taste the most delicious strawberry wine? Here’s the magic formula:

  • 4 pounds of strawberries
  • 1 gallon of water
  • 2 pounds of sugar or a jar of honey
  • the juice of a lemon
  • 1 Campden tablet
  • 1 teaspoon of wine yeast

a glass of springy strawberry wine

Making Strawberry Wine in 7 Steps

Step 1: Select Your Ingredients


What You’ll Need

  • Gardening Tools (optional)
  • Strawberries
  • A large stock pot

Wine is such a versatile drink! White, rosé or red, sweet or dry, sangria or moscato, wines can be made of a variety of fruit and according to diverse recipes.  Strawberries are not only a great choice this time of the year, but they are also more flavorful and tasty. If you have the chance to go to the country side and pick them up yourself is even better! If not in the mood for wandering the fields and hills, buy the fruit from a farmer. Always choose organic products.

Step 2: To Wash or Not to Wash the Fruit?

What You’ll Need

  • Fruit
  • Water

Cleaning the fruit before making the wine is not something that all winemakers do. However, we recommend washing the strawberries as there might be particles of dirt and you don’t want to ruin your miraculous beverage.

By cleaning the fruit you are in control of what you drink. Remove the stems and leaves, wash and gently rinse the strawberries.

Step 3: Chop. Crush. Press. Squeeze.

What You’ll Need

  • A potato masher
  • Same large stock pot
  • Filtered water
  • Lemon (optional)

Now it’s time for the fun part, when you chop, crush and squeeze the fruit. The strawberries will release their juices and heavenly smell. If you don’t have or don’t want to use a potato masher, you can go wild and use your hands. Avoid using a blender or a mixer as it can ruin the taste.

The juice should fill the stock pot. If you think there’s not enough juice squeezed from the fruit, add 1 -2 cups of filtered water. Using tap water is not a great idea, as it may affect the taste of your wine because of the additives it contains. If you don’t have a filter, you can boil the water and add it as soon as it cooled down.

You can also add the juice of one lemon to increase the acid level.

Step 4: Sweeten Your Wine if Necessary and Add the Campden Tablet

What You’ll Need

  • Honey or Sugar
  • Boiling Water
  • A Pot
  • A spoon
  • Campden Tablet

Strawberry wine may not be as sweet as you like your wine to taste. Berries are lower on sugar than grapes. That’s why you can control the sweetness of your drink by adding honey or sugar.

Here’s what you have to do. Boil some water in a pot and add the sweet ingredient, stir and let it cool. Then combine it with the smashed fruit. Don’t worry if the final result is not as sweet as you wished. You can always add some honey in it. I recommend honey, as sugar is not very healthy.

Now is the moment to smash the Campden tablet and add it to the mixture. Campden tablets are sulfur-based products that help stabilizing the composition. It also kills bacteria and does not allow the wine to turn into vinegar.

Step 5: Cover the Pot and Store it Overnight

What You’ll Need

  • A clean kitchen towel/ cloth/ T-shirt or special lid

Now it is important to keep insects away from your miraculous juice. That is why you need to cover it with a kitchen towel or clean T-shirt so that the air can flow. Find a dark and dry area in your kitchen with a temperature between 70 and 75 degrees F and let the strawberries sit overnight. They will do their work.

Step 6: Sprinkle the Yeast

What You’ll Need

  • Yeast
  • Spoon

Winemakers use either wild yeast or commercial yeast for their fruit wine. If you are not making wild yeast wine, which means not washing the fruits before the starting the whole process, sprinkle some commercial yeast over the mixture. You can add 1 gram of wine yeast and half gram of yeast nutrient into the composition and stir until dissolved. All these ingredients can be found in a homebrew shop.

What you have achieved until now is called a must. Leave the must to ferment for 5 to 7 days. During this time, you’ll observe some bubbling, which is the fermentation process.

Step 5: Strain the Strawberry Juice

What You’ll Need

  • Strainer
  • Carboy
  • Carboy Airlock

After a week it is time to remove the pulp and get that gorgeous juice. Strain the strawberries, funnel the must into a carboy and attach an airlock. Make sure you don’t stir it up as to avoid sediments. Add water if necessary. You will know the fermentation process is finished when there are no more bubbles rising to the top. In about four weeks the wine should be ready.

Step 7: Siphon the Strawberry Wine

What You’ll Need

  • Wine hydrometer (optional)
  • Secondary carboy

After all bubbling has ceased, you have to siphon the wine again into a clean carboy. To check if the fermentation is really finished, you can use a wine hydrometer. This should indicate a value between 0,990 and 0,998 on the specific gravity scale (SG).

Cap the carboy and store it in the fridge.  You’re almost done.

Step 8: Bottle Your Strawberry Wine

What You’ll Need

  • Wine Bottles
  • Funny, creative labels

Now that your wine is clear and the fermentation process has stopped, you can place it into bottles. Leave all the sediments behind and bottle up your delicious beverage. If you feel creative enough, make some personalized labels. Your strawberry wine can be a great gift idea.

Step 9: Enjoy a Glass of Springy Strawberry Wine

What You’ll Need

  • A Glass of Strawberry Wine
  • A Dessert/ Savory Dish
  • Great Company

You can finally take pleasure from working so hard. For a spectacular taste, try your wine with a tablet of white chocolate or a slice of mango. If you prefer savory to sweet, serve it beside a yummy spoonbread. Call your friends and enjoy this refreshing strawberry wine together!

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