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Messages - smith95

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1


Are you trying to improve your self-sufficiency by adopting a homesteading lifestyle? Change should begin in your kitchen. There are hundreds of ways to get closer to the earth through the ways you prepare your food, and the right tools will make the process simple.

Top 42 Homesteading Kitchen Tools
No matter whether your knife skills rival a gourmet chef or you’re a just a beginner at the art of baking, these kitchen tools will help you improve your self-sufficiency while preparing hearty, nutritious meals for your family.

1. Bread Machine
Your vision of a true homesteader might be a housewife who spends hours kneading bread each day, but it’s possible to get the full taste advantages of homemade loaves by turning to a bread machine instead. This brilliant machine lets you add ingredients to the top, press a button, and pull out a fresh-baked loaf an hour or two later. You can use bread makers to blend up everything from cinnamon roll dough, pizza crust, and even jams. This will save you time and money, and you will feed your family a healthier product in the process.

2. Vitamix Blender
Every well-equipped kitchen needs a quality blender, but most of us are used to replacing ours every few years. Not so with the Vitamix. This rugged blender is designed to last a lifetime, and it can be used to blend everything from smoothies to pesto sauce, baby food, bread dough, and even nut butter. Best of all, the blender can self-clean in 60 seconds if you add dish soap and blend.

3. Dehydrator
If your fruit trees are exploding on your homestead, one of the most economical ways to preserve the harvest is through a food dehydrator. Dried fruits last longer than canned, and they make an excellent snack because they retain their nutritional quality without requiring any added sugars or other preservation agents. With your own dehydrator, you can make fruit leather, crispy nuts and seeds, beef jerky, fruit and veggie chips, dried herbs, and more.

4. Pressure Canner
For those who want to preserve as much of their garden bounty as possible, a pressure canner is an indispensable pantry tool. Unlike water bath canners that can only process high-acid fruits, pressure canners let you preserve everything from fruit, vegetables, soups, and even meat. In fact, it is the only method considered safe by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for canning low-acid foods. Buy a quality canner the first time around, and your tool should last for decades.

5. Large Stock Pot
If you’re planning to butcher your own animals, make meals in bulk, or process fruit into batches of jelly, a large stock pot is a fundamental kitchen tool. Large stock pots can also double as water bath canners, meaning that you’ll be pulling one out regularly for all your cooking projects.

6. Cast Iron Dutch Oven
Cast iron has long been a staple for self-sufficient living, and a quality Dutch oven is no exception. You can use this tool to cook casseroles, bake bread, or perform almost any other cooking task, which is why it is considered a preferred cooking tool for professional chefs. Its ability to retain heat makes cast iron excellent for searing meat or slow cooking your favorite dishes. Best of all, this is a kitchen investment that will most likely outlive you in usefulness.

7. Grain Mill
For those who haven’t tasted bread baked from freshly-ground flour, you’re missing out on a treat. Grain mills make it possible to buy bulk goods like wheat, barley, oats, spices, peppercorn and more (even coffee) in bulk, and only grind what you need for each recipe, ensuring that the grains stay as fresh as possible. This saves you money and prevents you from throwing away rancid flour you couldn’t get to in time. Electric and manual crank grain mills are both available, so you can decide how “hands-on” you want to be.

8. Kitchen Aid Mixer
Do you have a passion for homestyle baking? Then life will get much easier once you add a Kitchen Aid mixer to your kitchen. Considered the gold standard for blenders, the Kitchen Aid brand is designed to last for life, and you can buy numerous attachments to improve its functionality, including a dough hook, pasta maker and more.

9. Pasta Maker
Add an extra layer of self-sufficiency to your homestead kitchen by using a pasta maker. Once you taste the chewy, flavor-filled difference that fresh pasta makes, you won’t want to go back to store bought. Homemade pasta tends to cook more evenly and absorb more sauce than commercial, letting you appreciate the full flavors of your dishes. The process is easier than you think with the right tools, meaning that you can put dinner on the table without much effort.

10. Ice Cream Maker
If you’re struggling to put farm-fresh milk to use, it’s hard to beat hand-churned ice cream. A homemade ice cream maker is simple to use; just add your ingredients and get churning. You can customize each flavor with homegrown ingredients, making each pint the perfect way to celebrate your seasonal bounty.

11. Bean Cutter
Growing green beans is easy. Processing them? Not so much. A bean cutter makes it possible to transform fresh beans into slender slivers that are easy to cook or can, and contain a more delicate flavor profile. If you need to process bushels at a time, this tool shouldn’t be excluded from your kitchen.

12. Apple Peeler
Apple season is a highlight for homesteaders, but coring and preserving the bounty is hard work without a designated apple peeler. This tool will peel, core, and slice an apple in a matter of seconds, making it easy to transform slices into a crisp, sauce, or a dried snack. Most peelers offer some versatility in sizing, meaning that you can also use it to peel potatoes and other veggies.

13. Apple Sauce Mill/Tomato Mill
Producing silky smooth applesauce or tomato paste is almost impossible without a food mill. This multi-functional tool is perfect for preparing purees, soups, jellies, and sauces from hot food to make it silky smooth – no tomato seeds left intact.

14. Coffee Grinder
If coffee part of your morning routine, it’s extra satisfying to take the brew into your own hands (literally) by using a manual coffee grinder. Grinding coffee beans releases their aromatic oils, which enhances their flavor profile. Burr-style grinders come with powerful blades to grind your beans to the perfect consistency for whatever your brew is, ensuring that you get a fresh-tasting cup every time.

15. Butter Churn
Few things feel more “back to the land” than munching on homemade bread slathered with fresh-churned butter. Far from being backbreaking, it’s easy to make homemade butter with a modern butter churn. These tools are designed to help you create homemade butter in minutes, so long as you have a fresh cream supply on hand. Delicious!

16. Cheese Cloth
Whether you’re interested in making homemade cheese or prefer to tackle other homesteading projects, cheesecloth is a versatile tool to keep in your kitchen. You can use it for straining curds, making soap, and even canning tomatoes and most cloths can be used multiple times. Strive to buy unbleached cotton cloth when possible so that you don’t expose your food to potential contaminants.

17. Solar Oven
Are you looking for a way to get out of the kitchen on a hot summer day? A solar oven might be the perfect option. These high-powered appliances harness the power of the sun to bake bread, brown meat, or even cook casseroles and root veggies. Depending on the weather, you can have dinner on the table in almost the same amount of time it takes to cook in a conventional oven, and you’ll reduce your home’s carbon footprint in the process.

18. Hand Crank Mixer
Many people choose to live a homesteading lifestyle to get away from the whir of motors. If this sounds like you, a hand crank mixer might be perfect for your kitchen. Give your arm a gentle workout while chopping veggies, pulverizing nuts, or even kneading bread dough more efficiently than you could without it. You’ll feel more connected to your food without wasting time.

19. Kitchen Scale
Some recipes call for exact measurements that mean your measuring cups won’t stack up. In these instances, a kitchen scale is an ideal alternative. This tool is perfect for precise food preservation recipes or soap making, and they’ll make it easier to replicate your results regularly.

20. Popcorn Popper
Few things are cozier than settling in with a bowl of popcorn next to the woods stove, and you can make your own at home with a stovetop popcorn popper. Simple to clean and proven to protect your kernels from burning, using a home popper will make family time feel more special.

21. Stovetop Waffle Iron
Homemade waffles are an exceptional treat, but most conventional waffle makers take up too much space and suck up electricity. Cut down on your carbon footprint by cooking with a cast iron waffle maker instead. This lets you cook waffles right on the stovetop, and the pan’s slim profile makes it easy to store away once you’re done using it.

22. Meat Grinder
Homemade sausage is a special treat for many homesteaders, but you’ll struggle to make your own without a quality meat grinder. This homesteading kitchen tool is essential for anyone that raises livestock or wants to make their own sausage, burgers, or meatballs. Most grinders can also be used to grind dry substances like grains or coffee beans as well.

23. Mortar & Pestle
Are you looking to transform your fresh ingredients into potent dips or sauces? Then a mortar and pestle should be considered a homesteading kitchen staple. Using a mortar and pestle lets you customize the grind size of your spices and rubs, allowing you to take control of the culinary process and express flavor profiles that matter to you. Most mortar and pestles are designed to last for life, so once you buy one you are set for the long term.

24. Juice Press
As much as you might love fresh juice in the mornings, maintaining the habit gets expensive if you’re buying it premade at the grocery store. A better option is to juice your own fruit with a compact, commercial-grade juicer. This makes it possible to pull out all the juice from your favorite fruits without mixing in the pulp.

25. Steel Tea Ball
It’s common knowledge that loose leaf tea can be great for your health, and a steel tea ball makes it easy to brew your own. Whether you’re drying herbs on the homestead for your perfect tea combination or looking for ways to infuse herbs in tea or wine, these balls let you keep the herbs in place and remove them once the infusion is finished.

26. Mandolin Spiral Slicer
Most homesteaders know the panic of producing too much zucchini, and a mandolin spiral slicer will help you get the harvest back under control. This multi-purpose tool lets you cut veggies into spirals of different sizes and incorporate them into a variety of dishes – including as a gluten-free pasta substitute.

27. Immersion Blender
The best way to turn your soups and sauces silky smooth is to blend them directly in the pot with an immersion blender. Most also come with a whisk attachment, making it possible to use it to create everything from heavy whipping cream to mayonnaise.

28. Salad Spinner
For those who grow fresh greens, getting them on the table quickly can often pose a challenge. A salad spinner makes it simple to dry lettuce leaves so that they aren’t dripping wet when you put your salad together, reducing the need for wasteful paper towels to do the same job.

29. Quality Knife Set
If you only invest in one homesteading kitchen tool, a set of quality knives is the way to go. Extra sharp knives make processing ingredients less time-consuming, which gives you more options for exploring new hobbies. While a knife set is the easiest way to secure quality knives, you can also buy them individually as finances allow.

30. Food Hugger
One real problem with producing much of your own food is that it often goes bad before you can get to it. The food hugger makes preserving meals and ingredients easy (and environmentally sustainable) by allowing you to cover food to keep it fresh without resorting to plastic. This makes it easier to prevent raw ingredients from spoiling so you can get back to them on your time.

31. Crock Pot
Life is busy enough without stressing about meals; sometimes you just want to make dinner in the morning and let it cook itself without you giving it attention. A crock pot makes it possible to do just that. Toss in your ingredients, turn it on, and let the power of simmering cook everything for you. Crock pots are an essential homesteading kitchen tool that can make it almost effortless for you to make soups, casseroles, beans, roasts and more.

32. Herb Keeper
Keep your fragile greens vibrant and fresh with an herb keeper– a tool that helps them stay fresh for up to four times as long. A small compartment at the bottom of the keeper lets you add water, ensuring that your favorite flavoring agents stay hydrated and healthy for days longer than they would otherwise.

33. Yogurt Maker
If you have access to fresh milk, a yogurt maker is one homesteading kitchen tool to add to your wish list. These devices make it possible to blend yogurt ingredients, turn on the machine, and let it do the hard work for you. Most yogurt makers allow you to adjust to the fermentation time, ensuring that you can choose precisely how tart the final product will be, and even accommodate non-dairy milk as well.

34. Meat Thermometer
If you want your home-raised meat to be well done, it’s essential to use a meat thermometer to test when the cooking process is complete. Even if you rarely eat meat, a high-quality meat thermometer works well to gauge the temperature of anything you’re making that’s heat sensitive, including yogurt, beer and more.

35. The Instant Pot
This trendy appliance deserves every accolade, as owning an Instant Pot lets you replace numerous other kitchen contraptions, including your crock pot, rice cooker, and more. Instant Pots make it possible to cook soups, stews, beans, bone broth, and so much more in the fraction of the time it traditionally takes, and they are designed to be safe, error-free, and low maintenance. Once you add one to your kitchen, you might be surprised how many uses you find for it.

36. Single Burner for Canning
All kitchen enthusiasts know how valuable burners can be when you’re juggling multiple projects, and hefty canners often take up too much real estate. You can expand your operation with a single burner, which makes it easier to can wherever is convenient for you- even outdoors if the weather permits it.

37. Vacuum Sealer
For the most efficient way to preserve the lifespan of your food, consider vacuum sealing each package to keep it fresh. A vacuum sealer allows you to pull the air out of your food so that it doesn’t spoil in the fridge for weeks. This helps you cut down on food waste, a significant contributor to greenhouse gases.

38. Fermentation Kit
If you’re interested in improving your probiotic intake, a fermentation kit will make it easier to turn your fresh produce into delicious kimchi, sauerkraut, pickles and more. Designed to allow for the proper transfer of carbon dioxide and oxygen through one-way breathable valves, a fermentation kit takes the guesswork out of fermentation so that you can enjoy your pickles faster.

39. Hardy, Wooden Chopping Boards
A disproportionate amount of time in the kitchen is spent prepping ingredients, so it pays to invest in quality cutting boards. Wood is the way to go, as plastic cutting boards tend to retain more bacteria than all-natural ones. It’s best to think twice about using bamboo boards as well, as their extra hard surfaces can damage knives over time.

40. Knife Sharpener
Once you’ve invested in a quality knife, keeping it in good shape should be a top priority. A knife sharpener helps you keep each blade in optimal condition, ensuring that your prep work passes by as efficiently as possible. A quality knife sharpener can be used for pocket knives and serrated blades as well.

41. Canning Jars
Canning jars are a staple component of the homesteading kitchen, even if you don’t want to preserve food. These glass jars are perfect storage containers because they won’t leach toxins into your food, and they make it easy to see what’s stored inside. Keep a supply on hand, and you’ll be amazed at how many uses you find for them.

42. Freeze Dryer
If you’re looking to preserve food so that it withstands any threat, then it’s best to invest in a home freeze dryer. Freeze drying will pull the water content from your meals so that it can last for decades without deteriorating and while still retaining its original taste, texture, and nutritional quality. It’s an impressive achievement that ensures you can stockpile food to prepare in the event of an emergency.

Regardless of where you are on your journey to self-sufficiency, these homesteading kitchen tools can help you improve. Add some to your wishlist, and you might soon pick up a new skill.

2


Using essential oils for beautiful, healthy and vibrant skin is nothing new. Ancient Egyptians were a culture known for its understanding of the value of essential oils for healing, gorgeous skin and aromatherapy. There is evidence of oils being used over 5,000 years ago in ancient Egypt.

Understanding Your Skin
Did you know that skin is the largest organ? If you are an adult, you have about eight pounds and 22 feet of skin on your body. Skin is a waterproof, insulating shield that protects the body from extreme temperatures, sunlight and harmful chemicals. It produces antibacterial substances to prevent infection and makes vitamin D for conversion to calcium for bone health. Skin is also packed with nerves and transmits information to the brain. Skin is truly an amazing and complex organ and one which deserves attention and care.

Aging Skin
We have three layers of skin and they all age in a somewhat different manner. The outside layer, also known as the epidermis is what forms a physical barrier for our skin. The dermis, or the middle layer, contains collagen and elastin. These provide strength, firmness, and elasticity. The deepest layer of skin is where you find connective tissue and fat.

As we age, so does our skin. A number of things happen that cause our skin to lose its youthful vibrancy. One of the first things that happen as our skin gets older is that collagen begins to break down. This is the support structure that keeps our skin firm. We also begin to lose subcutaneous fat – another support structure. This means our skin is thinner and it is more difficult to heal when we get a skin injury.

Because of the loss of subcutaneous tissue, some things become more prominent such as pores, hair follicles, and oil glands. Skin also becomes more sensitive to light and heat as skin structures become weaker.

Other things you may notice as you age are the fact that you seem to have more freckles and liver spots. These are the impacts of the sun. It is so important to protect yourself from the sun as you age.

While all this may sound dismal, there are ways to reduce the signs of aging and promote healthy skin. One of the best tools for this job is essential oils.

Dry Skin
Do you suffer from dry, **** or flaky skin? Millions of people suffer from dry skin which is characterized by a lack of enough water in the epidermis layer of the skin. Older persons are more prone to dry skin due to a lack of natural oils and lubricants. Some environmental factors such as humidity and temperature play a role in how much moisture the skin retains.

Essential oils can help replenish and nourish dry and flaky skin. These essential oils can help the body make more skin oil and calm dry and inflamed skin.

Other Skin Conditions
There are a number of things that can go wrong with our skin, conditions that change the appearance of our skin and can cause irritation and pain. Here are some common skin conditions.

Dermatitis
Sunburn
Eczema
Psoriasis
Bug Bites
Cold Sores
Hives
Acne
Shingles
Ringworm
Warts
Burns
Using Essential Oils Safely
A common belief is that because essential oils are natural, they are always safe to use. Unfortunately this isn’t always the case. When using essential oils for skin care, consider the following safety points.

Always dilute an essential oil in a carrier oil before topical application. You can see a big list of carrier oils and what they are good for in our guide here. A 2% dilution is advisable.
Do not apply essential oils on or near the eyes, lips or mucous membranes.
If irritation occurs, discontinue use immediately.
Avoid the use of essential oils on broken, irritated, damaged, or diseased skin.
Some essential oils increase photosensitivity. Do not use these oils before going out in the sun. For a full list oh phototoxic essential oils, visit here.
If pregnant or nursing, educate yourself on which oils you can use safely. If in doubt, don’t use an oil. This guide will help you safely use essential oils while pregnant.
15 Best Essential Oils For Face and Skin
The great thing about essential oils is that they are highly versatile and can be beneficial for a number of skin conditions. Here are the best essential oils for face and skin and how they can benefit a variety of skin conditions and improve the overall health and vitality of your skin.

1. Lavender essential oil
Besides its enchanting aroma, lavender oil is a circulatory stimulant that has soothing moisturizing properties that increases blood flow to the skin. This improves the skin’s appearance because it increases the delivery of nutrients and oxygen.

Free radicals are very unstable and reactive molecules that cause damage to living cells. Here are some of the places that free radicals come from:

Pollutants
Smog
Stress
Lack of sleep
Lack of exercise
UV rays
Illness
Bad food
Tobacco
Alcohol
As we age, our skin has less ability to defend against free radicals. We need antioxidants to fight the damage caused by free radicals which include signs of aging like wrinkles and fine lines. 

Research shows that lavender essential oil helps the body produce three powerful antioxidants, glutathione, catalase, and superoxide dismutase. These antioxidants can reduce the damage caused by free radicals.

Lavender oil mixed with frankincense oil along with a carrier oil such as sweet almond oil, can help lighten age spots, common with aging.

Lavender also possesses powerful anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce the irritation and inflammation associated with skin conditions such as acne, eczema burn, and even insect bites.

2. Frankincense essential oil
Aging can cause our skin tone to become uneven and create splotches. For sun spots, age spots and uneven skin tone, frankincense essential oil is an excellent choice. Frankincense oil, from the resin of the Boswellia sacra tree, can also help strengthen skin and can be used any place your skin sags such as under your eyes, your neck or abdomen.

3. German Chamomile essential oil
Chamomile essential oil has a calming and soothing impact on skin. It has a high content of azulene which gives it a blue color and also has anti-inflammatory and skin calming properties making it a good choice to remedy dry skin. Chamomile has the ability to penetrate deep into skin layers and promote moisture retention. This essential oil is a great choice for people with sensitive skin.

4. Tea tree essential oil
Tea tree oil is powerfully antiseptic and can battle against a variety of bacterial infections. It also has antiviral and antifungal properties making it an effective remedy for conditions such as ringworm, warts and toenail fungus. Used widely to treat pimples and acne, tea tree oil also contains a mild sedative and can be used topically for corns, boils, cuts, burns, and calluses. A little tea tree oil will quickly relieve the pain and inflammation from bug bites.

5. Geranium essential oil
Geranium oil has a beautiful floral scent and is used extensively in skin care products. It balances sebum secretion which makes it useful for both dry and oily skin. This aromatic oil contains antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties. When applied to scars, geranium oil has the ability to accelerate healing and fade scars. Geranium oil can help with acne, dermatitis and other skin conditions by reducing inflammation, fighting bacteria and calming skin. Apply diluted geranium oil to bug bites to stop pain and itching and promote healing. Because geranium oil is an astringent it can minimize the appearance of wrinkles by tightening the skin.

6. Rosemary essential oil
Rosemary has an alluring scent and is a warming oil which has a stimulant effect on the body. Although used often in hair care, rosemary is also highly beneficial to the skin. It has antimicrobial and antiseptic properties which make it an effective remedy for eczema, dermatitis, oily skin and acne. As an all over massage oil, rosemary helps relieve dryness and promotes healthy, toned skin.

7. Peppermint essential oil
Peppermint oil is a bit of a paradox, it is cooling and refreshing and also warming and stimulating. It softens, tones and calms skin and has potent antiseptic and antimicrobial properties. Research published in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine found that peppermint oil is an effective remedy for blackheads, dermatitis, inflammation, sunburn, ringworm, scabies and oily skin.

8. Lemon essential oil
Lemons are refreshing, invigorating and toning for the skin. The antiseptic, antimicrobial and antibacterial properties make this oil a hydrating remedy for nourishing damaged skin. Research shows that lemon oil is able to reduce cell and tissue damage caused by free radicals. This is due to the oil powerful antioxidant and anti-aging effects.

The antiseptic and astringent properties of lemon make it appropriate for oily skin and skin infections such as acne and boils. The astringent properties of lemon oil help combat wrinkles.

9. Neroli essential oil
Neroli has calming and uplifting properties and a very sweet floral fragrance. This oil also contains a chemical called citral that helps cells regenerate. Because of this it can heal stretch marks, balance oil production and shrink the appearance of pores while still leaving the skin moisturized

10. Rose essential oil
Rose oil has a sweet aroma and numerous properties that are great for skin. It cools and tones and has a positive impact on the vascular system. It can help remedy broken capillaries, reduce inflammation, itching, and dryness while reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

11. Myrrh essential oil
The anti-inflammatory properties of myrrh essential oil benefit aging skin. This oil helps to improve firmness, skin elasticity, and tone while reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, in addition, myrrh helps remedy sun damage, rashes, eczema and chapped skin.

12. Patchouli essential oil
This oil has powerful antiseptic, antibacterial, and antifungal properties and can help skin conditions such as dermatitis, psoriasis, acne, and eczema. In addition, patchouli is wonderful for aging skin and can promote new cell growth while smoothing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

13. Tangerine essential oil
Tangerine essential oil has antifungal and antiseptic properties that make it an excellent choice to battle acne. This essential oil is also known for its ability to reduce the signs of premature aging and increase the regeneration of cells and collagen production.

14. Cypress essential oil
If you cut yourself, it is great to have some cypress essential oil on hand. Because of its potent antiseptic properties, cypress oil can heal external and internal would and also prevent infections. A study published in the Complementary and Alternative Medicine found that cypress oil has antimicrobial properties that can keep bacteria at bay. Because of this, it is a great oil to remedy pimples and skin eruptions.

15. Carrot seed oil
Carrot seed oil offers potent antioxidant protection that helps skin renew quickly. It works well for skin that has been stressed by the environment. It has a pleasing, rich and earthy aroma and moisturizing capabilities.

DIY Essential Oil Recipes For Face & Skin
Here are just a few ways to use essential oil for healthy and vibrant skin.

DIY Under Eye Cream
This homemade eye cream made with frankincense essential oil helps to moisturize skin and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Ingredients

10 drops frankincense essential oil
1-ounce pure aloe vera gel
1-ounce organic shea butter
1-ounce melted organic coconut oil
½ teaspoon vitamin E oil
Directions

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Mix well.
Store in a glass jar with a lid.
Use around your eyes in the morning and evening – being sure not to get any in your eyes.
Invigorating Face Scrub
Use this refreshing face scrub a few time a week for radiant skin.

Ingredients

1  ¼ cups coconut sugar
½ cup coconut oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Zest from ½ lemon
5 drops peppermint essential oil
5 drops lemon essential oil
Directions

Mix all ingredients together in a small bowl.
Apply to a clean face in a circular motion.
Rinse and pat dry.
Save the rest in a glass jar with a lid.
Skin Softening Body Wash
This body wash is delicate enough to use all over your body and smells wonderful.

Ingredients

3 cups water
¼ cup steel cut oats
¼ cup liquid castile soap
12 drops lavender essential oil
1 teaspoon vitamin E oil
2 teaspoons avocado oil
Directions

Boil the water and pour over top of the oats. Let it sit for 2 hours and strain the water off. Set the water aside and discard the oats.
Mix the castile soap, essential oil, vitamin E oil, and avocado oil with a whisk.
Fill your foaming soap dispenser 10% with the soap/oil mixture.
Fill the rest of the dispenser with the oatmeal infused water.
All Purpose Skin Solution
This skin solution is great for all over moisturizing and can help heal conditions such as eczema while reducing fine lines and wrinkles.

Ingredients

1 tablespoon aloe vera gel
1 tablespoon organic coconut oil
6 drops lavender essential oil
3 drops frankincense essential oil
Directions

Combine aloe, coconut oil and essential oils in a food processor. Process until smooth.
Store in a glass jar in the refrigerator.
Use daily as needed to relieve dryness and promote moist and vibrant skin.

3


Cold sores, also known as fever blisters, are painful and also embarrassing. Some people struggle with them more than others and because they are a contagious oral virus, you can pass them back and forth between people you are close to.

The virus that causes cold sores is known as herpes simplex virus (HSV). There are two types of HSV, type l, and type ll. Cold sores are generally caused by type l. The virus can be spread by kissing or other close contact with the sores or even from contact with skin that seems normal but is shedding the virus and infected saliva without the presence of sores.

The virus is most contagious when open sores are seen and the risk is less once the blisters have dried and crusted over. You may have heard that you can catch the herpes virus from touching contaminated surfaces, washcloths or towels, know this is a myth.

Progression Of The Virus
Fever blisters go through several stages. At first, you might have tingling of your skin, followed by itching and burning around your lips. This is the first sign that a fever blister is developing (the best time to begin treatment). The blister will form on the border of the lips within 24-48 hours. It will eventually break and ooze and then dry out and crust over. A scab will form and protect the new skin underneath.

When the sores disappear, the virus enters the dormant stage where it travels up the nerve where it stays latent. When it becomes active again it travels back down the nerve to the skin and causes blisters called cold sores.

Although not usually serious, a cold sore infection can be life-threatening for those with a compromised immune system.

Some people develop antibodies and don’t get another infection again. However, 40% of adults get repeated cold sores.

10 Best Essential Oils For Cold Sores
Numerous studies have shown the effectiveness of essential oils to remedy cold sores. Essential oils may have an advantage over antiviral drugs that can have side effects. Keep in mind that you should not take essential oils orally. When used for the remedy of cold sores, most essential oils are applied topically to the skin after being mixed with a carrier oil such as coconut oil or sweet almond oil.

Here are ten essential oils that show promise in the treatment of the virus and ease of symptoms associated with cold sores.

1. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is the most famous essential oil for quickly healing a cold sore and for good reason. Tea tree oil has anti-viral, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties. This study published in Pharmazie in 2001 examined the efficacy of using tea tree oil against the herpes simplex virus and found that “virus titers were reduced significantly with tea tree oil“, while this article published from the Department of Infectious Diseases at the University of Heidelberg found that “tea tree oil has been shown to possess antiherpetic, anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties, as well as to accelerate the healing process of herpes labialis (cold sores).”

How to use: Diluted three drops of tea tree oil in a teaspoon of carrier oil and apply directly to the cold sore with a clean cotton swab. Repeat 2-4 times per day but stop the treatment if the skin becomes irritated.


2. Turmeric Essential Oil
Turmeric contains curcumin that has potent antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. In addition, turmeric essential oils contain antioxidants that can help speed up the healing process with cold sores and keep infections from recurring. According to research, curcumin may block the expression of HSV genes.

How to use: For the remedy of cold sores mix 1 teaspoon of raw honey with 3 drops of turmeric oil. Apply a small amount of this mixture to the cold sore site, allowing it to soak in completely. Repeat as necessary once or twice a day until the cold sore is gone.


3. Ginger Essential Oil
Ginger oil contains gingerol that can help keep herpes simplex virus from spreading and reduce symptoms associated with cold sores. Ginger is known for its immune boosting, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and analgesic properties that give it powerful therapeutic value. A study published in Phytomedicine in 2008 found that ginger oil inhibited HSV-2 activity in infected cells.

How to use: It is best to start using ginger oil before the actual appearance of a blister. Mix 10 drops of ginger oil with one ounce of coconut oil and apply a small topically with a clean cotton swab to the area where you feel pain. It will feel warm on your skin and will help ease pain and inflammation immediately.


4. Peppermint Essential Oil
Peppermint has a pleasing aroma and cooling properties that help provide relief from fever blisters. According to USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, peppermint oil has powerful antimicrobial and antiviral properties and is loaded with potent antioxidants. In a 2003 study, researchers found that peppermint essential oil demonstrated strong antiviral activity against both herpes simplex type 1 and 2. Three hours after application, antiviral activity was recorded to be as high as 99%.

How to use: To make your own peppermint oil treatment, combine 2 drops of peppermint essential oil with one-ounce olive oil. Apply the mixture to a cotton swab and dab on the cold sore scab several times a day.


5. Oregano Essential Oil
Oregano is an herb in the mint family that has been used therapeutically for over 2500 years. It has a long history of use for treating colds, indigestion and stomach ailments. Oregano essential oil has antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties that make it effective for cold sores on lips. In one study published in the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry, researchers found that the oils from Turkish oregano provided antimicrobial, antiviral and antioxidant properties.

How to use: To use oregano oil for cold sores, dilute 3 drops of oil in one ounce of fractionated coconut oil. Apply to the cold sore at the scab state using a clean cotton pad. Repeat several times a day.


6. Melissa Essential Oil (Lemon Balm)
Recognized in conventional medicine as a highly effective way to remedy fever blisters, Melissa oil has powerful properties to help fight viruses in the herpes virus family. This gentle oil is especially beneficial for people who are resistant to conventional antiviral substances. Research indicates that Melissa oil has powerful antiviral properties that penetrate the skin and go to work at healing fever blisters

How to use: Melissa oil is subtle enough to be applied directly to the skin. Simply apply a few drops of the oil to a clean cotton bud and dab on the blister three times daily until it is gone.


7. Eucalyptus Essential Oil
Eucalyptus oil has anti-inflammatory properties that make it a good option for remedying cold sores. A research paper in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology found that eucalyptus oil can significantly decrease inflammation and speed up the healing process of cold sores.

How to use: Dilute 4 drops of eucalyptus oil in one ounce of sweet almond oil and apply directly to the cold sore several times a day.


8. Clove Essential Oil
Clove oil is extracted from the dried flower buds of clove and has a variety of medicinal properties and is often used topically for the relief of pain. In addition, clove oil is often used on a variety of skin conditions and to remedy asthma, headaches, stress, toothaches and blood impurities. Besides being an analgesic, clove oil has anesthetic, antiviral, antifungal, antimicrobial and aphrodisiac properties. The impact of clove oil on herpes virus has been researched and the antiviral and antimicrobial properties can help reduce inflammation, itching, pain and spread of the virus.

How to use: Combine 2 drops of clove oil with 1 ounce of fractionated coconut oil and apply to your cold sore with a clean cotton bud several times a day.


9. Chamomile Essential Oil
Chamomile oil is extracted from the flowers of the chamomile plant. It has powerful antiseptic, antibiotic and analgesic properties. According to research, chamomile oil seems to interrupt the absorption of the herpes virus into cells in a different way than antiviral drugs.

Essential Oils That Reduce Cold Sore Symptoms
These oils are known for their ability to reduce the symptoms of cold sores.

10. Lavender Essential Oil
You may be familiar with the ability of lavender oil to calm the body and the mind. This very same oil can calm inflammation on the skin which makes it the perfect candidate to reduce irritation and swelling caused by herpes simplex. In one double-blind study researchers applied lavender essential oil cream to 75 people with cold sores. The results demonstrated that the cream reduced the size of the blister and sped up healing. Participants also reported less pain after the use of the cream.

How to use:  To use lavender oil to ease the pain and inflammation associated with cold sores, mix 2 drops lavender essential oil with 4 drops of sweet almond oil. Apply liberally to blisters after they have formed a scab. Do not apply to open sores.


Notes On Using Essential Oils On Your Skin
If irritation develops or it is painful to put the oils on your skin, discontinue use. Some people may have an allergy to a particular oil, although it is uncommon. Do not use essential oils over a long period of time as they can weaken the epidermis of the skin.

Read our Total Guide To Using Essential Oils Safely for more information on the safe use of EOs.

Be sure that you purchase only high-quality essential oils from a reputable supplier. You can read our review of five of the most popular essential oil brands here, or if you don’t have time for that, then Plant Therapy are our number one choice and you can purchase all of their essential oils from here on Amazon.

Other Home Remedies for Cold Sores
In addition to essential oils, the following home remedies can help lessen the redness, itching, inflammation, and pain for fever blisters.

Hot and cold compresses
Zinc
Rubbing alcohol
L-lysine
Aloe vera
You may also be interested to read our article revealing the twelve best home remedies for cold sores ranked in order of effectiveness below.

4
Health and Welfare / 6 Reasons Why You Should Eat Oatmeal For Breakfast
« on: December 06, 2018, 06:35:01 pm »


Ah, there is nothing like a piping hot bowl of oatmeal on a chilly winter morning. The warm oats fill your belly and heart, giving you the nutrients and the energy to make it till lunch. Oatmeal has long been heralded as a potent superfood but is often overshadowed by more flashy ingredients such as coconut oil and kale.

While drinking a green smoothie, jam-packed with fruit and vegetables, is a powerful way to start your day, sometimes it leaves you wanting more and causes you to crave a snack by midmorning. Oatmeal, on the other hand, satisfies your desire for a hearty and fulfilling breakfast, guaranteed to make you look forward to the most important meal of the day.

Not only is oatmeal a delicious option, but it is also incredibly nutritious. This whole-grain food can help encourage weight loss, restore healthy cholesterol, provide an excellent source of fiber, and so much more! Here are just a few reasons why you should add oats to your morning routine.

6 Reasons You Should Eat Oatmeal For Breakfast
1. Encourages Healthy Digestion
The insoluble fiber present in oatmeal helps to decrease episodes of constipation and encourage healthy digestion. It also helps improve the overall health of the gastrointestinal tract by ensuring that food gets to where it needs to go in the proper amount of time.

2. Prevents Cardiovascular Disease
Research proves the benefits of oatmeal for a healthy heart and decreased risk of developing heart-related conditions such as coronary heart disease. The antioxidants and healthy fibers present in oats make this an excellent breakfast choice for those needing to lower bad cholesterol without decreasing good cholesterol. Eat oatmeal for a healthy, happy heart.

3. Reduces The Risk Of Colorectal Cancer
Studies of over 2 million people in Europe showed that high levels of dietary fiber in the diet significantly decreased the risk of colorectal cancer. Researchers concluded, “Our results indicate a 10% reduction in risk of colorectal cancer for each 10 g/day intake of total dietary fiber and cereal fiber and about a 20% reduction for every three servings (90 g/day) of whole grain daily and further reductions with higher intake.”

4. Lowers Blood Pressure
One study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that oatmeal might be as effective as antihypertensive medications in regulating blood pressure. This study looked at an oatmeal-heavy diet, with results seen after test subjects received three daily servings of oatmeal. Keep in mind that this is not an acceptable substitution for high-blood pressure medication and only serves as a helpful supplementary option.

5. Improves Blood Sugar
The primary soluble fiber in oats known as beta-glucan partially dissolves in water once ingested, forming a thick gel-like substance in the gut that has potent health properties. One of the primary benefits of this fiber is its ability to help lower blood sugar levels and decrease insulin resistance in those who have type 2 diabetes.

Read Next: 10 Secrets To Balance Your Blood Sugar To Promote Weight Loss & Boost Energy

6. Aids In Weight Loss
One of the primary reasons people have difficulty losing weight is that they’re hungry all the time. This is in part due to an empty carbohydrate diet and meals that don’t fully satisfy due to their nutrient deficiency. Oatmeal may help remedy this issue by keeping you full for longer and increasing your feelings of satiety.

There is a common saying surrounding oatmeal, with many people claiming that it “sticks to your ribs.” While this isn’t quite the case, there may be some truth behind this statement. Beta-glucan has been shown to delay the rate of food production through the digestive system. Causing it to say in your stomach longer and keep you full and helping you to avoid unhealthy snacking due to hunger.

Gluten-free note: While oats themselves are gluten-free and safe for those with allergies, it is important to note that oatmeal products are often processed in factories that come into contact with wheat. Take caution when choosing oatmeal, and be sure to purchase certified gluten-free, if you have celiac disease or gluten sensitivity.

Keep in mind that oats can be difficult for some people to digest, due to the presence of phytic acid. If you notice your body responding negatively to the presence of oats in your diet, try cutting back the amount you eat each week or eliminating them entirely.

Which Type Of Oats To Buy
Steel Cut Oats
These oats are the healthiest option because they are the least processed out of all oat cereals. They have a delicious nutty taste and are super rich in nutrients. However, they do take slightly longer to cook than other oatmeals so keep that in mind if you choose to enjoy steel cut oats.

Hearty Maple Oatmeal Breakfast

Soaking steel cut oats overnight can help reduce cooking time by about 5-10 minutes. Making for a quicker breakfast option to help speed up your morning routine.

Ingredients:

1 cup steel cut oats
4 cups almond milk (or milk of your choice)
½ tsp pure vanilla extract
2 tbsp raisins
1 tbsp maple syrup
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
Instructions:

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.
Cover and let soak in the fridge overnight.
The following morning, add to saucepan, heat over medium heat until boiling.
Turn heat to low and let simmer 15-20 minutes or until mixture reaches your desired consistency. Stirring occasionally.
Serve immediately, or place in the fridge to enjoy your oatmeal cold.
Top with pecans, walnuts, or fruit of choice. Drizzle with maple syrup, if desired.
Rolled oats
Also labeled as “old fashioned” oats, these are not the healthiest variety, but are usually the most common and are quicker to cook than steel cut oats. You will still get most of the health benefits, but these oats are not quite as nutrient-dense as steel cut. These are an excellent option for when you’re in a hurry to get out the door, or need something to add to a baked creation. They are also excellent when ground down into oat flour for a gluten-free diet substitution.

How To Make Oatmeal With Rolled Oats

Ingredients:

½ cup rolled oats
1 cup water (or substitute almond or coconut milk)
Pinch of sea salt
Instructions:

Combine all ingredients in a pot on medium-high heat. Bring to boil.
Reduce heat to low and cook for 5 minutes. Stirring occasionally. Take off heat when desired consistency.
For a delicious addition to your oatmeal, try adding cinnamon, peanut butter, berries, raisins, nuts, or seeds.
Instant Oats
Though a desirable option for those struggling with patience, or on a tight morning schedule, instant oats are not worth the blow to your health. Don’t be lured in by their enticing flavors and quick cooking time. They are prepackaged and usually full of chemicals, added sugar, and other processed ingredients. The flavorings are from processed ingredients, while there aren’t even that many real oats in each package. Choosing instant oats over traditional oats is similar to picking a fast food drive through over a home cooked meal. Stay away from instant oatmeal. Your body will thank you for it.

Other Ways To Use Oats
Oatmeal Face Mask
There is a reason so many beauty products and lotions include oatmeal in their list of active ingredients. This healthy food makes a wonderful face mask that tightens and restores skin, while exfoliating and moisturizing. What’s not to love?

What You Need:

½ cup hot water
1 of cup oatmeal
2 tbsp plain yogurt
2 tbsp honey
1 egg white
What To Do:

Mix hot water and oatmeal together and let sit for 2-3 minutes.
Stir in other ingredients.
Apply to face in a thin layer. Save extra mask in a seal-able container and use within a week.
Let sit for 15-20 minutes and rinse thoroughly with warm water.
Be sure to rinse in your kitchen sink to avoid clogging your bathroom drain.
Read Next: Moisturizing Oatmeal Bath Melts To Relieve Itchy Skin

Fridge Deodorizer
Though baking soda is the ideal option, an open bowl of oats can be set in your fridge to absorb funky odors and help freshen your refrigerator.

Anti-itch Relief
Finely grind oats in your food processor and make a paste by adding cold water. Apply paste to the affected area and enjoy the cooling relief. This works well for poison ivy, bug bites, or mild burns. If you have a more significant issue with itching, try adding ground oatmeal to warm running bath water and soak for 15 minutes.

This method also works wonders for pets struggling with fleas or itchy hot spots. Bathe your itchy dog in ground oatmeal and water to alleviate some of their symptoms.

Sore Muscle Heat Pack
Whether you slept on your neck wrong, pulled a muscle while exercising, or are just sore from the day-to-day activities of life, whipping up a heat pack from oatmeal will help soothe and relieve tightness in your muscles. Find a small pillowcase or cloth bag and fill it with oats. Tie closed with string, or sew shut. Heat for 30 seconds at a time in the microwave until the bag is the desired temperature. Place on sore muscles and relax. This oatmeal bag can be used multiple times.

5
Health and Welfare / 9 Reasons To Have A Cup Of Ginger Tea
« on: December 06, 2018, 06:33:54 pm »


Nothing soothes the soul and body more than a steaming hot cup of ginger tea on a blustery winter day, or a tall glass of refreshing iced ginger tea to cool you off in the heat of summer. This root has been used for over 5,000 years in hundreds of countries as a remedy for many common ailments such as digestive issues, inflammation, and arthritis, and is often viewed as the starting point of much modern medicine. Ginger originated in Asia and is still most commonly grown there due to the optimal growing conditions, however, it has risen in popularity in Western culture not just as a fragrant way to spice up culinary creations, but as a potent healing superfood.

So What Exactly Makes This Root So Beneficial?
Ginger root is loaded with healthy compounds such as gingerol, shogaol, paradol, and zingerone. Though these words may seem unconvincing at first, it is important to realize their necessity in helping the body function optimally.

Gingerol, for instance, is used by the body to combat chronic inflammation, one of the greatest silent killers in American culture, by improving the function of the cardiovascular system. Chronic inflammation is when the body responds to trauma, even though it has not experienced any, causing swelling and damage to healthy tissues. This is considered to be at the root of many diseases such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease and is generally caused by an unhealthy diet and lifestyle.

Why Ginger Tea
One of the easiest ways to obtain all the powerful health benefits of ginger root is to make it into a tea. Steeping the root in hot water allows the valuable nutrients to escape and make them more easily accessed by your body. Many companies sell ginger tea already packed in easy-to-use tea bags, but fresh ginger is usually safer and healthier as many of these brands follow preservative processes that remove some of the vital nutrients from the root. If you are unable to procure fresh ginger or don’t have the time to slice it up, be sure to purchase 100% organic tea with no added elements – like this one on Amazon.

Ginger is also frequently sold in dried or powdered forms that are taken as supplements. However, ginger tea is by far the most relaxing and therapeutic way to enjoy the profits of this spicy root.

9 Health Benefits Of Ginger Tea
1. Relieves Nausea
One of the most exalted benefits of ginger tea is its ability to reduce nausea and settle the stomach. This is why many mistakenly reach for a glass of bubbly artificial ginger-ale when plagued by a stomach bug. While ginger-ale will do little to soothe an upset tummy, ginger has been used as a remedy to ease stomach upset from motion sickness, morning sickness, and vomiting since it was first cultivated in the ancient civilizations of China. In fact, there is even evidence to suggest that it may be as effective as prescription medication for preventing seasickness.

Another talked-about use for ginger related to stomach upset is its ability to decrease the effects of morning sickness in pregnant women. Be cautious before using this alternative treatment as some say that ginger may cause a miscarriage when ingested in large amounts, though there is little evidence to back these claims. Always talk to your doctor before beginning any outside remedies for pregnancy-related nausea.

A study also examined the effects of ginger in regards to adult cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. This study showed a significant decrease in nausea severity for those exposed to chemo. Groundbreaking research even suggests the possibility of using the gingerol compound as a treatment for particular types of cancer. One study performed on in vitro cancer cells revealed a significant ability to kill cancer cells while preserving the healthy cells.

Tip: To boost the nausea fighting powers of ginger, try adding mint leaves or lemon juice to your tea.

2. Strengthens The Immune System
Ginger is filled with powerful antioxidants that serve to protect and strengthen the immune system against disease. Not only that, but ginger tea can actually reduce the severity and duration of the common cold and allergies by discouraging negative respiratory symptoms. Plus the spice and kick of ginger tea helps clear the sinuses and remove clogged up mucus.

Studies show that ginger root possesses potent antiviral, antifungal, antibacterial, and antihistamine properties that all contribute to a clean immune system. This root can insulate your body against bacterial and viral infections and buffer the effects of free radicals, thereby preventing chronic illness and inflammation.

3. Encourages Healthy Digestion
Gut health should be one of the most crucial concerns of those wishing to improve their overall health and wellbeing as many illnesses that spread throughout the body start with poor gut bacteria. However, many people ignore the digestive system and don’t pay attention when their stomach signals that something is wrong.

Ginger tea has been shown to decrease the cases of indigestion and stomach ulcers while encouraging proper function of the gut and promoting healthy bowel movements.

4. Boosts Brain Function
Much of the brain deterioration that occurs in aging individuals comes as a result of inflammation. Due to gingers ability to reduce this chronic inflammation, it is often taken as a means of encouraging healthy cognitive function and increasing memory and alertness. One study performed on a group of healthy, middle-aged women showed an increase in memory capability and attention after just two months of regular ginger consumption.

The use of ginger to protect and repair the brain is of particular interest to those studying neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s and Altzheimer’s.

5. Relieves Pain
Since much pain comes from chronic inflammation, it makes sense that the gingerol compound in ginger can also help reduce muscle, joint, and bone discomfort. One study examined the effects of regular ginger extract consumption by those suffering from osteoarthritis of the knee. This study revealed a remarkable pain decrease in the group that was treated with ginger versus the placebo control group.

Research has also been performed proving gingers potent ability to treat exercise-induced muscle pain and menstrual cramps.

While ginger may not be able to compete with prescription pain meds, or NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) it is far less damaging on the body for long-term use since it is easy on the stomach and possesses no adverse side effects. If you struggle with chronic pain try a cup of ginger tea each day. Your body will thank you.

6. Aids Weight Loss
Losing weight can be a tiresome, lengthy process, so it’s nice to have a little bit of help along the way. Ginger tea can help you eat less and eat healthier by suppressing your appetite and giving you something to sip on throughout the day instead of other unhealthy beverages. It can also help to increase the rate of fat breakdown to help you lose weight quickly while and decreasing fat storage to prevent weight gain. 

Read Next: 8 Ways To Improve Gut Flora To Aid Weight Loss, Beat Anxiety & Allergies

7. Helps Control Blood Sugar
Type 2 diabetes is becoming increasingly common in the United States due to the prevalence of fast, processed, sugar-laden foods and unhealthy lifestyle choices along with a chronic lack of movement. Ginger can help regulate this disease by maintaining normal blood sugar levels and preventing crashes and spikes. One study also showed that ginger improved insulin resistance and encouraged healthy blood sugar.

8. Improves Blood Circulation
Poor blood circulation can be extremely dangerous and can result in a heart attack, blood clots, and stokes. Ginger acts as a natural blood thinner to encourage healthy blood flow to all parts of your body while preventing excessive clotting. Whether you suffer from atypical blood clotting or not, improving the cardiovascular system encourages brain function, cell growth, and healthy skin.

9. Reduces Stress
Ginger tea is thought by many to be a powerful calming agent that brings peace and harmony to the body. This is in theory due to its flavor and fragrant aroma. Drinking any tea is often considered a therapeutic process, as the warm liquid relaxes you from the inside out.

How To Make Ginger Tea
Ingredients:
1-inch fresh ginger root
1 cup filtered water
Instructions:
Peel and thinly slice fresh ginger root. This will ensure optimal flavor.
Add water and ginger to a pot or teakettle on the stove and boil on medium-high heat for 10 minutes.
Turn off heat and let tea simmer for 5 minutes.
Strain out ginger pieces.
Stir in raw honey to taste, if desired
Enjoy!
How To Make Turmeric Ginger Tea
Turmeric is one of India’s most magnificent healing spices and is known to reduce inflammation and deliver powerful antioxidants. Plus the flavor pairs wonderfully with ginger and can make your daily tea even healthier.

Ingredients:
2 cups filtered water
½ tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp chopped fresh ginger
1 tbsp raw honey
1 lemon wedge
½ tsp ground cinnamon
Instructions:
Add all ingredients to a pot on the stove and boil on medium-high heat for 10 minutes.
Turn off heat and let sit for three minutes.
Strain into glass and enjoy!
How To Make Spicy Ginger Tea
If you like a little extra kick to your tea, you’ll love this cayenne ginger recipe. Serve hot or over ice for a nutrient-packed, invigorating beverage.

Ingredients:
1 cup water
1 tbsp fresh ginger
Juice from ½ a lemon
1 tbsp honey
¼ tsp cayenne
Instructions:
Peel and thinly slice ginger
Boil water
Add all ingredients to a mug while water is boiling
Pour hot water into a mug and stir well
Let steep for 5-10 minutes
Strain and enjoy
Precautions:
It is unwise to take ginger in large amounts if you are on any medication that may thin your blood, as ginger can serve as a natural blood thinner.
Check with your doctor before consuming ginger tea if you have a history of gallbladder problems as there is a small chance it may increase bile production.
If you experience a skin rash or burning sensation in your mouth or stomach after ingesting ginger, cease use immediately as you may have a ginger allergy.
Some people may experience minor heartburn or stomach upset after consuming ginger.
It is unwise to use ginger alone as a treatment for any condition. Be sure to check with your doctor before regularly drinking ginger tea if you are experiencing health issues.
Consuming more than 4 grams of ginger per day is unwise. Stick to one-two cups of ginger tea daily for optimal benefits.
Are you ready to sip on a cup of ginger tea today to reap all the amazing health perks? Always remember to buy certified organic ginger from a reputable source or grow it yourself for optimal effect and benefits. This superfood truly does live up to its name! Try experimenting with different added flavors to keep ginger tea fresh and exciting.

6
Health and Welfare / 12 Wonderful Benefits & Uses of Cocoa Butter
« on: December 06, 2018, 06:32:05 pm »
1. Moisturizer
Cocoa butter is a wonderful, natural moisturizer that melts just above room temperature. It is high in fatty acids which penetrates the skin for deep hydration. One of the best ways to enjoy the creaminess of cocoa butter is to make your own whipped body butter. Here is a simple, yet effective recipe that your skin will love.

Ingredients

½ cup shea butter
½ cup cocoa butter
½ cup organic coconut oil
½ cup almond oil
20 drops lavender essential oil
Instructions

Combine all ingredients in pot, apart from the essential oils
Melt all of the ingredients together over medium heat – stir constantly.
Remove from the heat and let the mixture cool slightly.
Add the essential oil.
Place the mixture in the fridge for about one hour to allow it to harden just slightly.
Whip with a hand mixer for about ten minutes or until fluffy.
Return to the fridge for about fifteen minutes.
Store the butter in a glass jar with a lid in a cool location.
The creamy texture of this easy to make whipped butter makes your skin feel soft and healthy. This is a great product to battle the typical dry, itchy skin that accompanies the winter season.

2. Hair Conditioner
Don’t localize the moisturizing benefits of cocoa butter to your skin. Your hair will thank you for sharing the love. Here is an easy leave-in conditioner that will leave your hair not only feeling and looking great but also smelling great.

Ingredients

½ cup cocoa butter
2 tablespoon organic coconut oil
2 teaspoons vitamin E oil
6 drops vanilla essential oil
Instructions

Combine all ingredients apart from the essential oil in a small pan.
Melt the mixture over low heat, stir constantly.
Remove from the heat and for ten minutes and pour into an airtight container.
Add the essential oil.
Place the container in the freezer for about fifteen minutes.
Remove the mixture and let soften to the consistency of butter.
Apply to clean and dry hair.
This conditioner can be rubbed onto your scalp before bed and rinsed out the next morning, or you can simply apply to your hair (like mousse) and style as preferred. Each method yields healthy benefits. Your scalp will have a healthier oil production which greatly minimizes dandruff and will produce healthier hair follicles for stronger, thicker hair. Your hair will not only have a healthy shine, but moisturized strands are also less likely to break.  This means that your hair can grow longer. Reducing dead and split ends also allows for less frequent trips to the hair salon.

Read Next: How To Make A Coconut Oil Deep Conditioner

3. Anti-aging
Cocoa butter is rich in antioxidants including oleic acid, palmitic acid, and stearic acid. These fatty acids actually are a benefit to your skin, because they will provide a layer of protection from skin stressors and free radicals. This helps to slow to process of aging while acting as a mild sunscreen. Your skin will look healthier from day one. Because this will also slow the development of wrinkles, you will reap the benefits for years to come.

4. Skin Healer
Weather, hormones, and seasons of life all impact the health of our skin. Cocoa butter is a gentle and non-toxic option to help reverse the numerous signs of life. Almost any pregnant woman will tell you that she has heard of or tried cocoa butter for stretch marks. While, there may be no complete, proven cure, women boldly testify of positive results. The previously mentioned antioxidants also work to lighten age spots, to even skin tone, and to reduce scars. Some people have even recommended cocoa butter as a natural healer for those with sensitive skin or skin irritations such as eczema and dermatitis. Using cocoa butter is an easy way to replace commercial ointments and creams that are generally loaded with harmful chemicals.

5. Shaving Soap
Because of the creamy texture to cocoa butter, it is a favorite additive for lotions and creams. It makes a great addition to a rich and moisturizing shaving soap that is perfect for both men and women. This simple recipe will save money and feed the skin with beneficial nutrients.

Ingredients

½ cup cocoa butter
½ cup organic coconut oil
20 drops essential oil (lavender is great for gals and guys enjoy sandalwood)
Instructions

Melt the cocoa butter and the coconut oil in a small pan on low heat.
Mix together with a wooden spoon.
Remove from the heat and add in the essential oil.
Allow the mixture to cool.
Mix until fluffy with a hand mixer.
Put into an airtight container and store in a cool location.
The cocoa butter adds a full scent and allows the razor to glide smoothly over  legs and face.

6. Soft and Full Lips
Our lips are one of the only surfaces of our body that does not self-moisturize. That is why we are constantly licking our lips or reaching for lip balm throughout the day. Skip the chapstick and use a simple inexpensive, 100% cocoa butter stick.

Cocoa butter provides all of the benefits of moisturizing your lips while allowing you to enjoy the creamy texture. Because you can easily melt the cocoa butter, adding essential oils or adding your favorite color allows you the ability to create personalized scented or colored lip balms. The caffeine found in the cocoa butter will also make your lips feel more full. With your soft, tinted, full pout, your significant other will also benefit from your extra kissable lips.

7. Relaxation
A great way to unwind from a stressful day is with a long bath.  Cocoa butter is an amazing addition to a warm bath! Not only will you enjoy the deep, rich scent of vanilla and chocolate, but your bath becomes a silky smooth haven from life’s stress. Drop about 2 tablespoons of cocoa butter in the warm water.

The melted butter allows for easy full body coverage. If you want to spice up your bath even more add a few drops of your favorite essential oil and feel the stress melt away. If your feet are dry, make a foot soak using a tablespoon of cocoa butter and a few drops of your favorite essential oil.

8. Aromatherapy
Pure cocoa butter, sometimes known as Theobroma cacao, is fragrant enough to use in aromatherapy. The aroma of chocolate and vanilla is hard to resist. Essential oil experts will readily explain that cocoa butter is not a carrier oil; however, its natural properties do make it a lipid suitable for aromatherapy. You can blend your cocoa butter with a couple drops of Neroli which is an oil that reflects a fresh floral scent with citrus undertones. Neroli is known to combat anxiety and depression. If you want to focus on relaxing, try a green or red Mandarin oil mixed with your cocoa butter to encourage restful sleep.

9. Boost Immunity
Some research shows that cocoa butter aids in boosting one’s immune system. This preliminary research theorizes that CMP (cocoa mass polyphenol) might help suppress T-cell activity in our immune systems. The result of this could include reduced inflammation and adaptations in DNA. Incorporating more cocoa butter into your diet and lifestyle can also encourage hormonal balance. Some medical conditions that benefit from the use of cocoa butter are heart disease, mood disorders, psoriasis, high blood pressure, fibromyalgia, arthritis, and more.

10. Improves Heart Health
Recent research is disputing the previous mindset that all fats are bad. We are even seeing an encouragement to introduce healthy fats into our diets. Cocoa butter is an example of that healthy fat.

The polyphenolic components in cocoa butter lower inflammatory markers that contribute to hardening of the arteries. In fact, cocoa is not considered to be an anti-inflammatory food. In addition, cocoa also helps with fat metabolism and a decreased risk of heart attack.

11. Eases Constipation
Further research has shown that cocoa, which includes cocoa butter, aids in easing constipation. Consuming cocoa products on a regular basis encourages better bowel functioning. This includes healthy bowel movements as well as healthier time between bowel movements. This is specifically helpful in children who struggle with sensory processing issues. Researchers are therefore testing the benefits of cocoa to treat chronic constipation and bowel function diseases.

12. Encourages Happiness
It is widely known that chocolate makes people feel happy, but many do not understand the reason why beyond the obvious enjoyment of self-gratification. The cocoa butter in chocolate actually raises the endorphin and serotonin levels in your brain which in turn improves your overall mood. This is the first step in being psychologically prepared to be happy.  Furthermore, magnesium (found in chocolate containing cocoa butter) helps prevent the drop in progesterone that leads to emotional swings during PMS. Eating cocoa butter, therefore, is a scientifically proven way to begin bringing a smile to your face. Cocoa also contains phenylethylamine which acts as a stimulant. This can result in heightened mental alertness and greater stamina. Both alertness and stamina act together to encourage a sense of satisfaction with one’s abilities.

7
Health and Welfare / 7 Surprising Health Benefits Of Dark Chocolate
« on: December 06, 2018, 06:30:55 pm »


Chocolate is arguably the world’s favorite sweet treat. Each year, an estimated 7.2 million metric tons of chocolate is consumed worldwide. But while confectionary chocolate has a bad reputation as sugary, addictive, and guilt-inducing – dark chocolate, with its higher cocoa content, is a true super food that you can feel good about eating.

The Food Of Gods…
Of the Theobroma genus, which literally translates to “god food” in Greek, the journey from seed to candy requires multiple steps to transform raw cocoa into delicious, melt-in-your-mouth chocolate.

The cacao tree produces clusters of large ovoid fruit, nearly 12 inches in length. When **** open, the cacao pod contains dozens of seeds surrounded by pulp. The seeds are extracted from the pod to be fermented, then dried, and finally roasted into cocoa beans. At this stage, the shells can be removed from the bean in order to isolate the meat, also known as cocoa nibs.

Cocoa nibs are essentially chocolate in its purest form. The next steps call for the cocoa nibs to be ground up into a liquid, called chocolate liquor. The chocolate liquor is then processed again to separate the fatty portion from the liquid – what we know as cocoa butter – from the cocoa solids. The cocoa solids are then further refined through ‘conching’ to ensure the chocolate is silky smooth on the tongue, and ‘tempering’ to raise the melting point so that the finished chocolate is glossy and firm.

The health value of chocolate is determined at the blending stage:

Milk Chocolate typically contains anywhere from 10% to 50% cocoa solids, and is blended with sugar, cocoa butter, and some form of dairy.

White Chocolate does not contain any cocoa solids at all, made using only cocoa butter, sugar, and milk.

Dark Chocolate is the purest cocoa experience, containing between 70% to 100% cocoa solids. Depending on the percentage of cocoa, it may be blended with cocoa butter and sugar.

7 Health Benefits Of Dark Chocolate
1. Dark Chocolate Is Surprisingly Nutritious
While chocolate doesn’t exactly have the reputation for being a health food, the higher cocoa solids content of dark chocolate boosts its nutritional profile considerably:

Per 100 g       % of DV
Calories   599   30%
Protein   7.8 g   16%
Fiber   10.9 g   44%
Vitamin A   39 IU   1%
Vitamin K   7.3 mcg   9%
Riboflavin   0.1 mg   5%
Niacin   1.1 mg   5%
Vitamin B6   0.1 mg   2%
Pantothenic Acid   0.4 mg   4%
Calcium   73 mg   7%
Iron   11.9 mg   66%
Magnesium   228 mg   57%
Phosphorus   308 mg   31%
Potassium   715 mg   20%
Sodium   20 mg   1%
Zinc   3.3 mg   22%
Copper   1.8 mg   88%
Manganese   1.9 mg   97%
Selenium   6.8 mcg   10%
Although 70% to 85% dark chocolate is a good source of fiber, protein, and minerals, a 100 gram bar is still quite high in calories, sugar, and saturated fat. For this reason, it is well advised to only consume dark chocolate in moderation.

2. Dark Chocolate Is An Excellent Source Of Antioxidants
Dark chocolate is rich in several important antioxidants, including flavanols, polyphenols, catechins, and proanthocyanins.

When compared with other “super fruits”, dark chocolate was found to be a superior source of antioxidants according to a study published in Chemistry Central Journal. The researchers measured the total flavanol, polyphenol, and antioxidant activity of some of the most well known super foods, namely acai berries, blueberries, cranberries, and pomegranate. They found that not only was cocoa powder and dark chocolate higher in flavanols and polyphenols, but its oxygen radical absorbance capacity was significantly greater as well.

Believe it or not, the study’s authors concluded that dark chocolate absolutely meets the requirements of being considered a super fruit too.

3. Dark Chocolate Improves Blood Flow
Hypertension – or high blood pressure – is a long-term medical condition that is a major risk factor for the development of coronary disease, stroke, vision loss, kidney disease, and dementia.

But eating a small amount of dark chocolate each day can help improve blood pressure and blood flow, due to its heightened cocoa polyphenol content.

The randomized controlled trial published in JAMA involved 44 men and women with untreated prehypertension or stage 1 hypertension. Over the course of 18 weeks, participants consumed either 6.3 grams of dark chocolate or white chocolate each day. Compared with baseline, the dark chocolate group had improved blood circulation, as well as reduced mean systolic and diastolic blood pressure. The prevalence of hypertension declined from 86% to 68%. Eating small amounts of dark chocolate daily had no adverse effect on metabolics such as body weight, lipid levels in the blood, or glucose. Those who consumed white chocolate, on the other hand, experienced no changes in blood pressure.

4. Dark Chocolate Lowers Cholesterol Levels
Cholesterol is a waxy substance found in the blood. While it is necessary for building healthy cells, having consistently high levels of LDL cholesterol creates fatty deposits in the walls of the arteries, hardening and narrowing the vessels. Over time, LDL cholesterol builds up to the point where it impedes blood flow and increases the risk of heart attack and stroke.

Cocoa polyphenols, however, have been shown to improve lipid profiles in people with elevated cholesterol levels. The double-blind, placebo controlled study published in The Journal of Nutrition involved 160 participants who were given cocoa powder with either low, medium, or high levels of cocoa polyphenols twice per day for four weeks. Compared with baseline, consuming cocoa powder had the effect of decreasing LDL (or bad) cholesterol levels and increasing HDL (or good) cholesterol. The degree of improvement in these results were relative to the amount of cocoa polyphenols consumed; the higher the polyphenol content, the better the blood lipid profile.

5. Dark Chocolate Reduces The Risk Of Heart Disease
Since these, and other studies, revealed cocoa’s benefits for heart health in the short term, a group of scientists wondered how eating cocoa habitually over the course of many years would impact longevity.

The long term cohort study involved 470 elderly men who were free of chronic disease at the onset of the trial. One third of the participants did not consume cocoa at all, while the rest ate a median of 2.11 grams per day. Replicating the results of previous studies, researchers found that those who ate 4.2 grams of cocoa each day (the equivalent of 10 grams of dark chocolate) had consistently lower blood pressure than those who consumed less cocoa daily.

Following up after 15 years, they determined that eating cocoa-containing products was inversely associated with a 45% to 50% lower risk of cardiovascular death, as well as death from all causes. While reduced cardiovascular mortality could be attributed to cocoa’s blood pressure lowering effects, it is believed that its high antioxidant content may have also helped to prevent other illnesses like pulmonary disease and cancer.

6. Dark Chocolate Protects & Nourishes The Skin
Because pure cocoa is exceptionally rich in flavanol antioxidants, eating it offers a delectable way to protect the skin from the inside out.

The consumption of dark chocolate that is high in flavanols significantly protects the skin from UV light, according to a paper published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology. Split into two groups, the subjects were randomly assigned to consume either high flavanol dark chocolate (600 mg of flavanols per 20 gram portion) or low flavanol chocolate (30 mg of flavanols per 20 grams) once a day for 12 weeks. Compared with baseline, the high flavanol group more than doubled the amount of UVB ray exposure required to cause a sunburn. The low flavanol group, on the other hand, did not experience the same benefit, which indicates that it is the flavanols in cocoa that provide natural protection from the sun’s harmful rays.

In addition to its photo protective properties, high flavanol cocoa can help keep skin structures healthy. In a German study from 2006, consuming the equivalent of 326 mg per day increased blood flow in skin tissues, boosted skin hydration, lowered trans epidermal water loss, improved skin density and thickness, and made skin smoother and less rough and scaly after just 12 weeks.

7. Dark Chocolate Is Brain Food
Not only do flavanols in cocoa improve blood circulation throughout the body, they also have a beneficial effect on blood flow in the brain.

In healthy, young volunteers, consuming 150 mg of flavanol-rich chocolate for 5 days increased cerebral blood flow during cognitive tasks, according to a 2006 study. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging to measure brain activity and cerebral blood flow, those who consumed flavanols had a significant increase in blood oxygenation in active brain regions, as well as improved blood flow and volume in key areas of the brain.

Since cocoa flavanols can help keep the brain healthy and working optimally, researchers next explored its impact on elderly people with mild cognitive impairments in a study published in Hypertension. Split into three groups, subjects consumed either high flavanol (990 mg), intermediate flavanol (520 mg) and low flavanol (45 mg) cocoa each day for 8 weeks. Eating cocoa resulted in significantly higher scores in verbal fluency tests, and faster time to completion for visual attention and cognitive task switching in both the high and intermediate flavanol groups.

How To Enjoy Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate is an acquired taste, especially if you are used to the sweetness of milk chocolate candy bars. Because it does not contain dairy and has a higher percentage of cocoa, dark chocolate is notably deep, rich, savory, and bitter.

If you do not like the taste of dark chocolate, try placing a small piece in your mouth. Chewing it releases some of the bitterness, so let it melt on your tongue. Good quality dark chocolate will feel velvety, and as it melts, will release its complex flavors slowly to soften the astringency of the cocoa solids. You can also ease your way into a higher cocoa content by starting at 55% and working your way up to 70%.

Another way to enjoy dark chocolate is to pair it with complimentary foods. It is a delicious addition to cheese, nut, and fruit plates. It also helps balance out sweet wines and black coffee. If you need more sweetness, add a drop of honey, molasses, or balsamic vinegar on to each square. The tartness can also be masked by mixing it up into a smoothie, like this peanut butter banana blend.

Where To Buy Dark Chocolate
To ensure the dark chocolate you purchase is of the highest quality and enriched with antioxidants, only purchase brands with 70% or more cocoa solids. Cocoa solids should be listed first in the ingredient list; avoid bars that include dairy, vegetable oils, or artificial flavors. You’ll also want to steer clear of “dutched” or alkalized cocoa, a process that improves flavor but halves the phytonutrient content. And lastly, to ensure your chocolate bar isn’t produced with child labor, only support brands that are fair trade and organic.

Here are some recommended dark chocolate products that meet our nutritional and ethical requirements:

Alter Eco makes a 85% cocoa dark chocolate that contains just four ingredients: cocoa beans, cocoa butter, raw cane sugar, and vanilla beans.

Endangered Species is an 88% cocoa chocolate made with chocolate liquor, cane sugar, soy lecithin, and vanilla. For each bar sold, the company donates 10% of its profits to organizations that protect at-risk wildlife and habitats.

Heavenly Organics makes 100% cocoa dark chocolate patties that are sweetened with a raw honey filling – so you can get the best of both worlds.

Wild Foods offers a raw cocoa powder that can be used for smoothies and shakes.

8
Health and Welfare / 13 Ways To Heal Knee Pain Naturally
« on: December 06, 2018, 06:28:41 pm »


The knee is the largest and most complicated joint in the human body, comprised of a number of ligaments and muscles. Connecting the two longest mechanical levers in the body, the thigh and the lower leg, forces are always acting on the knee joint. While the large thigh muscles give the knee strength and mobility it is the ligaments that surround the knee that provide the most stability.

Not only does the knee joint bear the weight of the upper body but it also absorbs the shock when we walk or run. In addition, there is no part of the skeleton, unlike the hip joint, that protects the knee joint.

It is actually not surprising that millions of people are impacted daily by knee pain. Pain can range from a slight annoyance to full-blown disability in some people. Here are just a few reasons for knee pain.

Sprains and strains
Osteoarthritis
Overuse
Fractures
Gout
Obesity
Anterior knee pain
Knee pain can restrict movement, reduce strength, limit mobility and impact muscle control.

Are Knee Replacements Always The Best Answer?
According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, over 600,000 knee replacements are done each year in the United States. According to the Academy, this number is expected to rise to over 3 million by 2030.

But, not everyone would agree that a knee replacement is always the best answer to solving knee pain. Research indicates that there are many people who have the surgery either prematurely or unnecessarily and that it is only the seductive nature of the surgery that makes so many people jump at the option.

Research out of Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond found that knee replacements are only appropriate for those with severely advanced arthritis that impaired physical function. This would be someone who could not climb a flight of stairs or get out of a chair or walk without help.

Data from 4800 people in the U.S. with knee osteoarthritis or at high risk of developing osteoarthritis was analyzed. From this group, 205 had total knee replacements. Researchers judged surgeries as appropriate, inappropriate or inconclusive based on a number of factors like pain, the range of motion and degree of arthritis. Researchers expected to find about 20% of these surgeries as being unnecessary but they were shocked to see the number as high as 34%. Patients in this group had only moderate pain and their arthritis was not widespread. Fewer than half of the 205 replacements done were found to be appropriate. The inconclusive group was 22% and included patients younger than 55 with severe symptoms and those who had less damage and normal mobility.

The results of this research suggest that patients spend ample time reviewing the necessity of a total knee replacement with their physicians based on their individual level of need.

Going under the knife for any kind of surgery carries a whole host of risks on its own. This begs the question, should all non-invasive therapies be exhausted before a patient considers surgery? My answer to this would be an overwhelming YES, and adding to that, all “natural” therapies – this rules out the masking of pain with over the counter prescription painkillers and inflammation busters that carry a whole host of their own risks.

Always speak to your doctor before attempting any of these natural remedies.

Here Are Some Of The Best Ways To Alleviate Knee Pain Naturally
1. Exercise
Although it may seem counterintuitive to exercise when you have knee pain, there are many exercises and stretches that can help to alleviate pain and increase flexibility. This is dependent on the nature of your pain and the source. If you have arthritis, daily moving will help to reduce stiffness and increase your range of motion. Here are some suggested exercises for knee pain caused by arthritis. If you have knee pain from a meniscal injury or any other injury be sure to consult a physician before exercising.

Standing leg lifts – Stand against a wall. Raise your leg to the side keeping the toe pointed forward slightly. Try not to lean. Repeat 15-20 times on each side.
Stand up, sit down – Sit in a chair with your back straight. Cross your arms over your chest. Stand up slowly, unassisted and sit back down slowly. Do this for one minute.
Standing kickbacks – Stand straight and lift a foot off the floor bending your heel towards your buttocks. Hold for a few seconds and lower slowly. Repeat 20 times each leg a few times a day.
Hamstring stretch – Lie on your back with your legs stretched out. Bend the right knee and grab the back of your thigh with both hands. Gently pull your leg towards your chest. Relax your arms so that your knee is pointed straight up. Relax your arms so that your knee is pointed straight up. Straighten your leg upwards as much as you can. Bend again, then stretch again. Repeat both legs three times.
Seated leg cross – Cross your ankles over each other while contracting your thighs. Hold this for 20 seconds and switch sides. Do three to four sets on each side.
Swimming, cycling, yoga and elliptical training – All of these aerobic exercises are good for people with knee pain as they are low impact. In contrast, if you have knee pain, it is wise to avoid the following activities; running, skiing, intense biking, jumping, and high-impact sports.

2. Diet
Weight management is crucial if you suffer from knee pain. The closer you are to your ideal weight the easier it will be on your knees. Even just losing a few pounds will make a tremendous difference if you are overweight. Eliminating refined carbohydrates, sugar, and wheat from your diet is a great place to start. Consume whole, organic foods as much as possible. Including powerhouse anti-inflammatory foods such as tuna, salmon, leafy green veggies, apples, carrots, beets, broccoli, celery, blueberries, pineapple, honey and bone broth.

3. Heat & Cold Therapy
Reduce pain and swelling by applying a cool pack to your knee. To help keep the joint from stiffening up use a heating pad or warm pack. Alternate between hot and cold for 24 hours after an injury. You can purchase hot and cold packs on Amazon.

4. Willow Bark
A study found that some people suffering from arthritis had reduced pain after using willow bark. Willow bark is often used to remedy fever, pain, and inflammation. Do not use willow bark if you are allergic to aspirin or are taking blood thinners.

5. Ginger Extract
Ginger is an ancient anti-inflammatory spice that has been used therapeutically for thousands of years. According to a study out of the University of Miami, ginger extract could one day be used in place of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs known as NSAIDs. In this study of 247 patients, a highly concentrated ginger was used. Forty percent of participants had reduced pain and stiffness in their joints.

According to study leader Roy Altman, MC, “Research shows that ginger affects certain inflammatory processes at a cellular level.”

In addition to its antioxidant activities, ginger also has anti-ulcer, antioxidant and analgesic properties. You won’t get the benefit from ginger eating foods like gingerbread, ginger tea, and gingersnaps because they don’t contain enough ginger to be effective. The best way to get enough ginger is to take a capsule twice a day. The study mentioned above used a capsule that contained 255 milligrams of ginger – this is equal to almost a bushel of ginger from the grocery store. This Pure Synergy Super Pure Ginger Supplement packs 42 milligrams per supplement.

As with any supplement, be sure to check with your physician before taking ginger. Start out with a smaller dose and work up from there. Be careful if you are taking blood thinners, ginger can have an effect on this. 

6. Massage
According to the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA), massage may be a useful tool to relieve knee pain. Follow these instructions for self-massage.

Sit with knees pointing forward and feet flat on the floor.
Make a loose fist with your hands and tap the upper, lower and middle thigh ten times with both hands. Repeat this three times.
With your feet flat on the floor, place the heel of your hand on top of the thigh and glide it as far as the knee, then let go. Repeat this five times and do this also on the outer and inner sides of the thigh.
Press four fingers into your knee tissue and move up and down five times. Repeat this all around the knee.
Place the palm of your hand on top of our thigh, glide it down the thigh, over your knee and back up to the outer thigh.
7. Essential Oils
A study published in 2008 demonstrates that a massage oil with ginger and orange can relieve both pain and function in patients with mild pain due to osteoarthritis. Researchers have also found that putting an ointment containing cinnamon, ginger, mastic, and sesame oil had a positive impact on pain, stiffness, and range of motion.

8. Acupuncture
A study with 570 people found evidence that acupuncture could help with pain due to osteoarthritis. Participants in the study received either 23 true or sham acupuncture sessions over 26 weeks or 6 acupuncture sessions over 12 weeks. The results showed that participants who received true acupuncture had more relief than the others as well as increased mobility.

9. CBD Oil
More and more evidence indicates that cannabis oil – also known as CBD oil can be effective in remedying joint pain. CBD is a kind of cannabinoid which occurs naturally in the cannabis plant and does not contain any psychoactive properties.

It’s ability to alleviate pain is attributed to the fact that it inhibits pain pathway signaling and its anti-inflammatory properties.

Read more about how CBD oil can alleviate pain here, and if you’d like to try it for yourself, it is available to buy from Daintri.com here.

10. Tai Chi
The ancient art of Tai chi is a form of meditative exercise that may be a useful tool in managing knee pain. According to a year-long study including 204 people with knee, osteoarthritis it was found that Tai chi may have a similar or better impact on pain as conventional physical therapy.

11. Foam Rolling
Foam rolling can be highly beneficial to break up adhesions in the legs that can contribute to knee pain. Research also shows that rolling can help increase flexibility. Rolling the quadriceps and IT bands can help with pain relief when you have pain as a result of overuse or exercise. You can use a foam roller to loosen muscles that support the knees including the gluteus maximus and the tensor fasciae latae. You can purchase hard or soft foam rollers but many people with pain prefer using a soft roller. If you come across a place that really hurts when you roll, take a few minutes to wait and let the tension ease up. As you loosen up a tight area, this will feel better.

Here are some basic foam rolling instructions:

Roll your quads – Position the foam roller on the floor and lie on your stomach with the front of one thigh over the foam roller. Your other leg should be on the floor for support. Roll over the front of the thigh from the top of the hip to the top of the kneecap in an up and down motion. Do this daily for 2 minutes.
Roll your IT band – Put the foam roller on the floor and take a side position with the outside of your thigh over the foam roller. Your other leg should be on the floor for support. Roll the back of your thigh from the bottom of the buttock to the knee using an in an up and down motion. Do this for 2 minutes daily.
Roll your hamstrings – Position the back of one thigh over the roller. The other leg should be on the floor for support. Roll your back thigh from bottom to your buttock to your knee in an up and down motion. Do this daily for 2 minutes.
Roll your adductors – Lying on your side, place the inside of one thigh over the foam roller. Keep your other leg straight on the floor for support. Roll the inside of your thigh from your groin to your knee in a side to side motion for about 2 minutes.

12. Anti-inflammatory Supplements
There are a number of herbs and spices as well as other supplements that can help reduce inflammation and help with healing from injuries or degenerative diseases. Here are some of the best supplements to choose from:

Turmeric
Black pepper
Rosemary
Bone broth or bone protein
Collagen protein
Omega-3 fatty acids
13. Good Footwear
People who have knee pain should avoid wearing sandals, high heels, boots, boat shoes or Crocs. Because these types of shoes are lacking good support, they can aggravate not only knee pain but also back and hip pain.

If your knee pain seems to be related to exercise it would be wise to go speak with a specialist to get the best shoe for your exercise – especially if you are running. Some people find relief with speciality insoles.

9
Health and Welfare / 6 Vitamin Water Recipes That Make Drinking Water Fun
« on: December 06, 2018, 06:25:36 pm »


Here at Natural Living Ideas, we’ve recently been on a bit of a water kick. In fact, the advice to “drink more water” seems to find it’s way into just about every list of ways to improve your health. Of course, there’s a very good reason for it. Water is the ‘magic diet supplement’ to cure all ills – or at least to help cure them all. Sadly, most people don’t drink enough of it (here’s why that’s dangerous) and usually it’s because of the taste (or lack there of).

Recently, while exploring ways to make water more exciting, we discovered a nifty little gadget called the Aqua Zinger. Half juicer and half water bottle, the Zinger was made with one purpose in mind: to flavor your drinking water using fresh fruit and herbs without filling your mouth with pulp and seeds.

The following are six of my favorite recipes that I’ve experimented with and enjoyed since adopting my new Zinger.  Enjoy!

Kiwi Strawberry Fizz
It helps if your berries are very ripe for this one. Chop them small, fill up the fruit compartment, close then and add fizzy water. Make sure the fruit compartment and lid are secured tightly then turn the bottle upside down a few times. (Don’t shake it too hard. It will spray out the top when you open the straw.) Each time you finish the water, add more and let it sit for a while to get more berry-kiwi goodness.

I also enjoy this one with a sprinkle of Stevia or Monk Fruit added to the mix when I’m craving something sweet. You can also add fresh mint to give this combo a little extra zip!

Cranberry Citrus Cocktail
Add slices of any combination of orange, grapefruit, lemon and lime (whatever citrus fruits you may have lying around) to the fruit compartment. Add a splash of 100% unsweetened cranberry juice then fill with soda water or plain filtered water. This combination is very refreshing and energizing. The cranberry juice is great for flushing out your urinary tract and the citrus fruits are excellent for a quick boost to your metabolism.

I prefer this one unsweetened. However, it is very sour and you may need to sweeten it up a smidgen to make it palatable.

Cucumber Double-Melon
Ripe honeydew and cantaloupe make a perfect compliment to cucumber slices. A classic flavor combination that can’t go wrong! (Unless you dislike cucumbers and melons, that is…) Just add cold filtered water or fizzy water, let it sit for a few minutes to allow the fruit to steep, then sip and enjoy!

Cucumber, Lime & Mint
Mix a little fresh mint and lime with your cucumber slices for a cool, refreshing treat that’s just like being at the spa! You can also add a little extra mint and a sprinkling of natural sweetener like Stevia or Monk Fruit to make this concoction taste like liquid candy.

Pineapple, Orange & Mango
If you’ve ever tried one of those sugary tropical juice drinks they sell at most grocery stores, then you probably already know how good these three fruits taste together. But who really wants to drink all of that added sugar? If you like them, you can also add a slice or two of banana to the mix. Pour in the water and add a natural sweetener of your choice for a truly sweet fruity treat!

Remember To Save Your Fruit!
One of the best things about using this handy little gadget is that when you’re finished, all of the fruit is still packed up nice and neat in the bottom of the container. Take a fork to it and enjoy a sweet snack. Scoop it into a jar of water and leave it in the refrigerator overnight to create even more infused water. Or you can even pop the mashed fruit into ice cube trays and freeze it to make colorful fruity ice cubes that not only make water taste better as they melt, but also look really pretty too!

10
Health and Welfare / 3 Awesome Benefits Of Juicing + 10 Recipes
« on: December 06, 2018, 06:23:48 pm »


There has been a lot of buzz around juicing in recent years. Proponents of juicing often claim it improves mental clarity, boosts energy, assists with weight loss, and detoxifies the body.

Though there is little by way of scientific evidence that a juice cleanse will kick start the metabolism, clear out toxins, or help to shed excess weight quickly, that doesn’t mean that juicing can’t be part of a healthy diet.

Read on to discover why juicing should be a part of your daily meal plan.

What is Juicing?
Juicing provides an easy way to consume more fruits and vegetables by extracting the juice from whole produce.

By removing the plant tissues, the resulting beverage is rife with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other beneficial phytochemicals.

To render whole fruits and veggies into liquid, you will need a juice extractor. There are two main types of juicers on the market today:

Centrifugal juicers are equipped with a spinning blade that quickly grinds up produce and deposits the pulp into a separate receptacle. Although they make juice fast and are quite affordable, centrifugal juicers can be noisy, are less efficient in extracting liquids, and are not good for extracting juice from drier produce like kale and other leafy greens. Their speedy operation also generates heat that can destroy some of the nutrients in the finished drink. While there are some drawbacks, centrifugal juicers are great for people who only juice occasionally.

Masticating juicers extract liquid at a low speeds by pressing and crushing fruits and veggies with a single rotating auger. They are quiet, much more efficient, will extract the juices from leafy greens and root vegetables, and do not generate heat, allowing you to retain as many nutrients as possible. While they are a bit more expensive, masticating juicers are well worth the investment if you plan on incorporating juice into your daily meals.

The Best Juicers You Can Buy

3 Benefits of Juicing
Despite the hype around juicing, there are three good reasons to get your juice on:

1. Get the Recommended Daily Serving of Fruits & Vegetables
At a time when only 1 in 10 Americans are consuming the necessary 1 ½ to 2 cups of fruit and 2 to 3 cups of veggies each day, juicing offers an easy way to increase your intake of fresh produce and try new varieties.

You can fit quite a few plant foods into a single glass of juice. It’s the equivalent of eating a heaping bowl of fruit in one sitting.

2. Protection From Chronic Disease
We know that eating plenty of colorful fruits and vegetables helps protect us from chronic diseases like cancer, heart disease, and diabetes. Juicing makes it so these life-saving and life-prolonging nutrients are much more accessible on a daily basis.

3. It’s Easier on the Digestive System
Because juicing involves removing the majority of the insoluble fiber from the produce, what you are left with is essentially raw, liquid vegetables. Drinking juice means your body can instantly absorb all of the drink’s vitamins and nutrients. It’s like taking your daily multivitamin, but in juice form.

3 Things to Keep in Mind While Juicing
Juicing is an excellent way to increase fruit and vegetable consumption but should be enjoyed in moderation. It’s best to juice in addition to the foods you normally eat and not use it as a meal replacement. Here’s why:

1. You Need Dietary Fiber
Dietary fiber plays an important role in health and is part and parcel of a healthy diet. Fiber isn’t digested or absorbed by the body, passing through your system mostly intact.

Soluble and insoluble fiber, which are present in most plant foods, helps keep bowel movements regular, maintains good bowel health, and naturally controls cholesterol and blood sugar levels. It also has the effect of making you feel full and satisfied for longer, which can certainly help with weight loss.

2. Fruit Juices Can Be High in Sugar
While there is an important distinction between added sugar and the sugars found naturally in fruit, it’s good to be mindful of the volume of fruits you’re juicing. For example, a single orange contains 12.2 grams of sugar, but you may need two to four oranges to make a glass of juice – that’s nearly 50 grams of sugar per drink!

To keep natural sugars low, make juices with a healthy mix of vegetables and keep the fruits to 1 ½ to 2 cups maximum per day.

3. Leave Room in Your Diet for Whole Fruits and Veggies
To achieve the full spectrum of benefits of a diet enriched with fruits and vegetables, be sure to eat them whole too.

Up to 90% of the fruit or veggie’s fiber is removed during juicing, and important antioxidants and other phytochemicals that are bound up in the plant’s tissues are lost in the process.

If you prefer to drink your produce and retain all of the good stuff, simply blend up your fresh fruits and vegetables to make a smoothie instead.

10 Delicious & Healthy Juicing Recipes


When you juice, it’s super easy to eat the rainbow:

1. Green Juice
5 kale leaves
6 celery stalks
2 cucumbers
½ lemon
2 apples
Slice of fresh ginger
2. Vision Booster Juice
8 carrots
2 oranges
Slice of ginger
Slice of turmeric
3. Raspberry-Beet Juice
1 beetroot
½ lemon
3 pears
1 cup raspberries
4. Homemade V8
6 carrots
1 beetroot
3 tomatoes
2 cups baby spinach
1 red bell pepper
3 celery stalks
¼ sweet onion
½ clove garlic
3 kale leaves
¼ head cabbage
1 habanero pepper
Salt and Worcestershire sauce to season
5. Blackberry Juice
1 cup blackberries
1 kiwi
1 pear
¼ pineapple
10 peppermint leaves
6. Strawberry-Mango Juice
2 apples
2 leaves red cabbage
3 carrots
1 cucumber
1 mango
1 ½ cups strawberries
7. Spicy Juice
12 carrots
1 slice ginger
¼ lemon
¼ lime
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
½ cup coconut water
1 bunch cilantro
Salt to taste
8. Root Juice
1 sweet potato
6 carrots
1 beet root
2 celery stalks
2 apples
2 slices ginger
1 orange
1 zucchini
9. Autumn Juice
2 cups of pumpkin
½ orange
1 cup cranberries
2 apples
1 slice ginger
1 tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
10. Coconut Juice
1 medium coconut (meat only)
2 oranges
2 peaches

11
Health and Welfare / Top 8 Brain Foods For Better Memory, Focus & Mood
« on: December 06, 2018, 06:22:21 pm »

A sad, but true, fact of human existence is the inevitability that our minds will decline as we age. Over the course of our lives, our cognitive abilities peak, plateau, and eventually begin to dip as we reach certain age milestones; for example, processing speed begins to decrease in our late teen years, visual working memory peaks in our mid-30s, and yet our vocabulary continues to climb in our 60s and beyond.

Although keeping physically active, socializing with friends and family, and engaging in intellectually stimulating activities like reading and puzzles are among the ways to keep the mind as sharp as a tack, the foods we eat will also provide an extra edge for cognitive function.

Keep your grey matter healthy and eat smart with these 8 brain boosting foods:

1. Fatty Fish
Omega-3 fatty acids are powerful brain food. Found in seafood and shellfish, the best sources of omega-3s are fatty fish like salmon, tuna, herring, mussels, anchovies, sardines, mackerel, and trout.

At each stage of life, omega-3 fatty acids play a crucial role in brain health. During pregnancy, women who consumed seafood regularly or supplemented with fish oil had increased fetal growth in the womb, which provided a boost in brain and eye development. Mothers who took fish oil while breastfeeding resulted in their children having higher verbal intelligence and visual recognition memory by the age of four; women who did not consume omega-3s during the same period resulted in their children having reduced social skills and lower IQs.

Even as adults, our brains continue to benefit from omega-3 fatty acids. Taking a daily fish oil supplement for 35 days resulted in a sizeable boost to cognitive performance, attention, and reaction time compared with a placebo.

Omega-3 fatty acids also help to protect the aging brain. Subjects between the ages of 50 to 75 experienced improved executive function and memory, an increase in the volume of grey matter, and strengthened brain structures after 26 weeks of omega-3 supplementation.

On top of its ability to boost brainpower, omega-3 fatty acids help to stabilize mood and are an effective preventative for clinical depression and other serious psychiatric ailments. Mood is important for overall cognition since we learn much better when we are happy.

2. Berries
An abundant source of antioxidants and phytochemicals, berry fruits are excellent brain foods. Enriched with anthocyanins, caffeic acid, catechin, quercetin, kaempferol, and tannins, berries not only protect the brain from neurodegenerative diseases but also improve memory, learning, and overall cognitive abilities.

Strawberry, blueberry, blackberry, mulberry, huckleberry, and other types of berry fruits alter how neurons in the brain communicate, mediating the signalling involved in inflammatory processes that can damage neurons, enhancing neuroplasticity and neurotransmission. Berries have also been shown to prevent or delay the onset of age-related diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease due to their anti-oxidative, anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, and anti-proliferative properties.

3. Nuts
Nuts are rich in nutrients, protein, fiber, vitamins, antioxidants and other phytochemcials that contribute to metabolic and heart health.

Generally, all kinds of nuts – cashews, peanuts, almonds, walnuts, and pecans, to name a few – contain monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids that improve insulin sensitivity, reduce the risk of cancer, and lessen chronic inflammation. And keeping your cardiovascular system in good working order has been linked to better cognitive function today and later in life.

In evaluating how various fruits and vegetables impact cognitive abilities over the long-term, nuts were identified as one of the best foods to boost and maintain brain health according to research published in British Journal of Nutrition. Using data gleaned from the Doetinchem Cohort Study, a sample of 2613 men and women between the ages of 43 and 70 were subjected to a battery of neuropsychological tests twice, five years apart. Those who ate nuts regularly had better cognitive functioning (memory, information processing speed, and cognitive flexibility) at baseline and had a lower risk of mental decline during subsequent testing.

While all types of nuts are good for the noggin, the best nuts to eat for improved brain function appear to be walnuts. In another large scale study, consuming an average of 10 grams of walnuts per day resulted in faster response time, information processing speed, and better scores in memory, concentration, and motor control than those who ate other kinds of nuts.

4. Turmeric
Turmeric, the pungent yellow spice, is truly one of the most dynamic healing herbs on the planet. Studies on curcumin, its chief medicinal component, have shown that it bolsters physical health to improve immunity, defend against depression, aid digestion, protect the heart, and more. Applied topically, it is an excellent tonic for the skin with strong anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-aging, and anti-cancer properties.

Curcumin is also incredibly good for the brain. Numerous studies have found that it protects against the onset of Alzheimer’s disease by crossing the blood-brain barrier to ease oxidative stress, neutralize free radicals, inhibit pro-inflammatory enzymes, and delay the degradation of neurons. Most significantly, it clears away beta-amyloid plaques in the brain – one of the hallmarks of developing Alzheimer’s disease. When consumed by people who have Alzheimer’s disease, it improves memory and cognitive performance.

In addition to its neuroprotective capabilities, curcumin shows promise as a cognition enhancer in healthy brains. Published in 2012, the animal study involved feeding aged rats a curcumin enriched diet for 12 weeks and assessed behavioral performance and cell proliferation in the hippocampus region of the brain. The researchers found that curcumin interacted with various genes involved in the brain, which improved memory formation, boosted brain cell growth, and increased neuroplasticity – or the brain’s ability to rewire itself.

5. Cruciferous Vegetables
Of the Brassica family, cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, kale, collard greens, brussels sprouts, and bok choy provide a good source of vitamin K – a key nutrient for brain cell signalling.

A fat soluble vitamin, vitamin K is essential for the formation of sphingolipids – a type of fat found in abundance in brain cell membranes.

While data on vitamin K’s role in cognition and behavior is limited, new evidence suggests that it may improve memory in older adults. Published in Neurobiology of Aging, a cross-sectional analysis of 320 healthy men and women between the ages of 70 to 85 years old found that those who had higher concentrations of vitamin K in their bodies had better episodic memory – the ability to encode, store, and retrieve recent or past events and experiences.

Interestingly, consuming a vitamin K rich diet may help to reverse the effects of impaired memory function. In a 2016 observational study, those who consumed the least amount of dietary vitamin K rated poorly on memory tests. But when vitamin K was increased, they had much better outcomes in subjective memory questionnaires.

6. Coffee
Life-long coffee drinkers take note, drinking a few cups of joe each day has major benefits for brain health.

Although coffee is a good source of several antioxidants, it is the caffeine in coffee that is good for your grey matter.

Caffeine impacts the brain in several ways. It increases alertness, which improves reaction time, visual attention, and passive learning. When consumed in moderation, it boosts mood and decreases the risk of depression.

Caffeine also provides neuroprotective effects. Improving working memory and reaction time in older adults (particularly women), drinking one cup of coffee in the morning can prevent cognitive decline between morning and afternoon in the elderly. Those who are habitual coffee drinkers have a significantly reduced risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease in their lifetime.

Of course, too much caffeine can cause anxiety and insomnia so it’s best to limit your caffeine intake to 200 mg per sitting (about 2.5 cups of coffee) or 400 mg per day (5 cups total daily).

7. Dark Chocolate
Made up of 70% to 100% pure cocoa, dark chocolate is an excellent source of flavanols, polyphenols, proanthocyanins, and other antioxidants. While it is best known for its ability to improve blood flow throughout the body and maintain cardiovascular health, dark chocolate is also very good for keeping the mind sharp.

According to a review published in 2013, the flavonoids in dark chocolate exert a number of beneficial actions on the brain. Readily absorbed and detectable just 30 minutes after consumption, flavanols cross the blood-brain barrier and accumulate in regions associated with learning and memory. They interact with cellular signalling pathways, trigger gene expression that help establish long-term memories, promote the formation of new neurons, and enhance cerebral blood flow.

This cascade of brain events may help explain how eating dark chocolate improves cognitive function. In a large longitudinal study involving 968 participants between 23 to 98 years old, regular dark chocolate consumption was associated with improved cognitive performance and protection from age-related cognitive decline. The participants who ate the most dark chocolate had better scores in working memory, episodic memory, visual-spatial memory and organization, and abstract reasoning.

8. Seeds
Though small in stature, edible plant seeds are densely packed with nutrients that help boost brainpower. Seeds are rich in healthy fats, essential amino acids, antioxidants, fiber, protein, vitamins, and minerals. These are the best ones for your head:

Sunflower Seeds

Sunflower seeds are a good source of vitamin E and thiamine, both of which are vital to a fully functioning mind. Studies have shown that vitamin E supports healthy brain function, improves cognitive performance, and reduces the risk of dementia later in life. Likewise, thiamine plays a key role in brain function; people who are deficient in thiamine are at a much greater risk of developing Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.

Sunflower seeds are also high in tryptophan, an essential amino acid that boosts serotonin receptors in the brain. Serotonin is involved in both mood and learning, with lower levels associated with several cognitive impairments and higher levels having a beneficial impact on memory and attention.

Flaxseed

Offering a vegan alternative to fatty fish, flaxseed is one of the best plant sources for brain boosting omega-3 fatty acids. Flax is also an excellent source of thiamine and vitamin K. Its wealth of other B vitamins, like folate and niacin, ensures that flaxseed can protect the aging brain from cognitive decline.

Pumpkin Seeds

Not only do pumpkin seeds contain vitamin K, folate, and thiamine, they are also teeming with good-for-the-brain minerals:

Magnesium has been shown to preserve cognitive function and promote synaptic plasticity in the brain, which contributes to both learning and memory. Per cup, pumpkin seeds provide 185% of the daily value for magnesium.

Iron deficiencies have been linked to cognitive impairments such as reduced attention span, intelligence, sensory perception, and the phenomenon of “brain fog”. Pumpkin seeds are an excellent source of iron, providing 115% of the daily value.

Copper, too, is essential for maintaining brain function and health. Low levels of copper in the body and brain increases one’s risk of several neurological disorders like Alzheimer’s disease. Pumpkin seeds are rich in copper, providing 96% of the daily value.

12
Now that Globacom has upgraded their network equipment with new, higher capacity and spread out their 4G LTE service in all the 36 states of Nigeria, I guess you guys are now enjoying their huge data bonus, most especially the Yakata package that gives 2.4GB for just N500.



At The Top 50 Brands/ IamBrandNigeria awards, held in Lagos at the weekend, Nigeria’s Globacom carted home the ‘Most Innovative Product of the Year’ Award, in addition to its recognition as the third most valuable brand in Nigeria.

Glo Yakata, which has generally been adjudged as one of the best offers in the industry won the prize for Globalcom.

Customers on the Yakata plan and new ones enjoy amazing bonuses every time they recharge their Glo lines, in addition to the free bonus, which could give customers up to N2, 200 for an N100 recharge. The bonus includes as much as 6GB of data and a minimum of N500 to call all networks.

Organizers of the awards commended Globacom for its constant innovations which have seen it roll out a series of people-oriented products and services in 2018, adding that Glo Yakata has added higher value to the company’s subscribers.

If there is Glo 4G LTE service in your area and you are using it. Please share your experience in the comments section below.

13
DStv Now is a great app to watch your favorite channels live on your smart device. It’s been a fantastic app to use on mobile devices, but unless you owned a Smart TV it wasn’t the easiest of ways to get the service to run on your television. Should you be an Xbox One owner that is about to change.



DStv Now has officially launched on the Xbox One, which means you might now finally have a device that’s connected to your television set. As long as you’re an account holder of the premium DStv service with a PVR decoder, DStv Compact Plus and Compact customers with an Explora you’ll gain access to it. The app has also been added to Hisense TVs.

Usage of DStv Now is increasing rapidly with more than two million plays of live and Catch Up content per week,” MultiChoice said in a statement.
Below are all the devices that are now supported:
Xbox One, Xbox One S, Xbox One X
Hisense smart TVs (selected models from 2018)
Samsung smart TVs (selected models from 2015 onwards)
LG smart TVs (models running webOS 3.0, 3.5 and 4.0)
Apple TV (4th gen and up)
Media players running Android TV (Google-certified devices only)
Unfortunately, we doubt that Xbox One X owners will receive 4K support, as Multichoice is yet to breach HD to UHD mark. Accessing the DStv Now service requires an active Internet connection in addition to the account details for your existing DStv subscription

Up to four devices can sign into the same account and two devices can stream content at the same time.

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Hello guys, if you are interested in buying BeepTool Oyi-1 4G LTE Android smartphone posted earlier, it is important for you to read the terms and conditions below before you place an order.



1. PRODUCT DEFECT, DAMAGE, AND RETURN
BeepTool’s supplied devices have a manufacturing defect(s) warranty. Any device that has significant manufacturing defect shall be repaired or replaced, depending on the severity of the defect, free of cost to you.

(a).  Product with manufacturing defect should be returned as soon as they are noticed.

(b).  Devices that are received damaged should be reported immediately and returned within a week of delivery, a replacement or repair will be done free of cost. Device damage that is reported long after delivery shall be deemed to be caused by the user.

2. PRODUCT REGISTRATION
All devices sold under the ($1 or local currency single note equivalent rate) are automatically registered on BeepTool’s device management server.

BeepTool reserves the right to use geolocation services to know the location of the device

3. LOST, STOLEN OR BROKEN DEVICES
You agreed that any case of device loss including robbery and damage to the device is at the user’s risk and the following apply

 (a).  In case of robbery or stealing, such must be reported at the nearest police station and BeepTool authorized to track and retrieve the device. The cost of this service shall be borne by the user.

b).  In the case where the device could not be recovered, BeepTool will demand a payment of $75 or local currency equivalent which is due immediately. The device will be locked and made unusable to the thief.

(c).  In case of physical or software damage caused by the user, BeepTool will replace broken or damaged parts or restore services with the cost borne by the user.

(d).  You are not allowed to repair any damage or defect of the device on your own without a written permission of BeepTool or its agent.

4. DEVICE CONNECTIVITY
Devices are not smart without connectivity, you, therefore, agree to recharge your data plan with a minimum of NGN800 monthly in exchange for 1GB data and 30 minutes bundled local calling plan. Refusal to pay for connectivity in two consecutive months will lead to remote locking of the device and attempt to recover the device by BeepTool.

5. REMOTE SERVICES AND ADVERTISEMENTS

You Understand and Agree

(a).  That all devices sold under the ($1 or local currency single note equivalent rate) are the property of BeepTool CIS Ltd for a period of 24 months after registration

(b).  That BeepTool reserves the right to remotely operate the device and make changes to software layout, install and uninstall apps, without prior notice or your approval.

(c).  That BeepTool can send you text-based, graphical, interactive, rich media, social, e-mail, video or other online advertisements through the device.

(d).  BeepTool reserves the right to remotely lock and attempt to recover a device if you are found to be using it for negative contents including but not limited to harassment, intimidation, terrorism, etc.

(e).  That BeepTool may provide third party content to the user through the device

(f).  The device would be released to the user completely, free of any listing, remote services, and advertisement after 24 months.

(g).  That anyone earning more than $50 per month is not eligible for the BeepTool $1 smartphone.

(h).  That anyone earning more than $50 per month can own the smartphone by sponsoring the TRUE COST OF  MANUFACTURING the BeepTool $1 smartphone at (NGN23,000) or $60. Hence sharing revenue with BeepTool within 24 months.

15
The York University - Canada invites applications from International students who are looking at acquiring scholarship opportunities to undergo a degree program at the Institution.

This scholarship program is designed to provide financial support to high-caliber scholars doing research that is aligned with the VISTA program under the supervision of a VISTA Core or Associate Member.



Application Deadline: January 31, 2019

Eligible Countries: International

Type: Masters

Eligible Field Of Study: Psychology, Kinesiology & Health Science, Electrical Engineering & Computer Science, Biology, Physics & Astronomy, Mathematics & Statistics, Philosophy, Science & Technology Studies, Digital Media, Film, and Visual Arts.

Value Of Scholarships: $10,000.

Eligibility:

Applicants must Have applied, or be in the process of applying for full-time admission to an eligible graduate program at the Masters level at York University. You must be accepted as a new Masters student in the program to hold the scholarship
Applicants must be fluent in English Language
Applicants must have completed their Bachelors degree program
Application Process: To create an application, please complete:

VISTA Application form
Voluntary self-identification survey
One-page summary of proposed research plus signature page
Undergraduate transcripts
Curriculum Vitae
Referee Form
If an out of cycle application is approved, primary supervisors must submit a letter of support as a supplement to the candidate’s application package.
Primary supervisors may request an out-of-cycle application for outstanding candidates in exceptional cases. A request to apply out of cycle must be submitted by the primary supervisor to the Training Committee by sending an email to applyvista@yorku.ca.
To view instructions, select Instructions
Use the application checklist to ensure your package is complete
Email the application to applyvista@yorku.ca
 

Visit The Scholarship Webpage For More Information

16
International Finance Corporation (IFC)—a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector in developing countries. The Bank Group has set two goals for the world to achieve by 2030: end extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity in every country.

Summer Interns are hired for a duration of four to ten weeks between May and September every year in Washington, DC or directly in one of IFC’s country or regional offices. On average, about 30-40 candidates are selected every year.

Title: International Finance Corporation Summer MBA Internship Program
Job #: req1341
Organization: IFC
Sector: Investment
Grade: UC
Location: Washington, DC
Required Language(s): English
Preferred Language(s): English, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, Russian, French

Description
International Finance Corporation (IFC) hires summer interns each year for a minimum period of four weeks between May and September to work on discrete projects in Washington, DC or in one of IFC’s country or regional offices.

IFC’s summer internships are paid positions. We receive about 1500 applications each year, from which 30-40 candidates are selected. Summer Interns are assigned to an industry, regional or service department within IFC. Assignments cover various areas of work, such as sector-specific business development, investment proposal review, financial modeling and analysis, advisory services strategy, and ex-post investment project evaluation. The assignment depends on the needs of the department and the particular fit for the candidate.  Departments hire directly by contacting short-listed candidates.

Following a thorough evaluation process at the conclusion of the internship, successful interns are encouraged to apply for the IFC Young Professionals Program to work as an Associate Investment Officer position, or any other full-time opportunity available after graduation.

Who can Apply?

Candidates must be in the first or second-to-last year of an MBA or similar graduate program. Specific selection criteria include:

Selection Criteria

For investment positions, work experience (3-6 years) in international finance, which could include corporate finance, investment banking, financial consulting, private equity, credit analysis, or commercial banking

Knowledge of sectors relevant to IFC and emerging markets experience preferred
Strong analytical, communication and negotiation skills
Business development and client relationship skills
Enthusiasm for working in multicultural teams and across borders
Fluency in English; proficiency in one or more of Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian and Spanish strongly preferred
Commitment to sustainable private sector development
Application and Selection Process

The application period opens December 3, 2018 and closes January 15, 2019.  The short-list is created by the IFC HR Programs Team and shared IFC wide to hiring Managers by mid-to late February.  Managers are then free to hire from that list.  Those students hired from that list will be considered IFC Summer interns specifically for this program.  Applicants can apply using the IFC Career Compass site or click the link below.

Apply Now

The World Bank Group values diversity and encourages all qualified candidates who are nationals of World Bank Group member countries to apply, regardless of gender, gender identity, religion, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or disability.  Sub-Saharan African nationals, Caribbean nationals, and female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.

17
Latest Jobs Vacancies / Tanus Group New Job Position Available
« on: December 06, 2018, 05:41:19 pm »
Tanus Group – A reputable firm company is seeking an e-business officer with responsibilities which includes increasing the efficiency of the company’s book production and sales through various channels while undertaking various researches and cost-benefit analysis. He/she is also responsible for identifying, analyzing, and understanding the e-business needs and requirements of the clients as well as the companies. E-business team handles the e-commerce, mobile and web development projects and ensures the local network and Internet connectivity is stable in order to meet the business objectives.

We are recruiting to fill the position below:

Job Title: E-business Officer
Location: Lagos

Roles and Responsibilities

Effectively carry out the translation of business requirements into functional specifications to satisfy the business needs and necessary system modifications.
Undertake conversion of data to the new system and work with the application support personnel to implement the system software.
Coordinate effectively with all stakeholders and technical staff.
Perform other assigned duties as delegated by supervisor, line manager and management from time to time.
Support and implement various development projects.
Effectively undertake the requirement elicitation, document and analysis, solution design, testing definition and execution.
Document the enhancement recommendations from project managers and business stakeholders and evaluate site design and functionality.
Effectively analyze and monitor the services, market trends, and customer requirements.
Interact with business users and work closely with them to understand their IT needs and business opportunities.
Key Skills:

Expert in digital marketing which includes Web, mobile and social media networks.
Knowledge about the different technologies and features such as eCommerce, mCommerce, mobile development and graphic illustrations.
Knowledge about Web platforms and different development environments such as html5, css, phone, Javascripts, etc.
Ability to write clear reports and maintain records
Effective organizational and management skills.
Expert in time management and the ability for achieving the given tasks within the allocated time frame.
Knowledge of networked environments and maintaining a stable environment (LAN, WAN).
Personal Characteristics:

Exhibit Professionalism at all times.
Punctual and hardworking in nature.
Ability to work under pressure and stressful conditions.
Expert judgment and decision making skills.
A self-starter with high attention to detail.
Great team work and collaborative spirit.
Proven ability to make an impact internally and externally.
Analytical minded.
Ability to engage and drive others to deliver targets.
Exhibit high energy levels and drive.
Ability to easily adapt to changing work environment.
Qualifications and Education Requirements

Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science, Information Technology, Telecommunication, Marketing, Management or any other relevant field.
3 – 6 years experience in ICT with respect to Web and mobile technologies.
How To Apply
Interested and qualified candidates should forward their CV to: careers@tanusbooks.com Using the job title “E-business Officer” as the subject line.

Application Deadline 7th December, 2018.

18
Latest Jobs Vacancies / DVM Technologies New Job Opportunity
« on: December 06, 2018, 05:40:39 pm »
DVM Technologies is recruiting suitably qualified candidates to fill the position below:

Job Title: Agricultural Implementation Engineer
Location: Lagos

The Position

Must have experience in farm management and must be detailed oriented with knowledge in agricultural technology
Should be willing to perform other task as assigned.
We’re looking for an Agricultural Implementation Engineer
The role would oversee the design and building structure for live stock farming as well as crop farming from start to finish.
Benefit

Great Pay, Flexibility.
How to Apply
Interested and qualified candidates should send their Applications to: dvmtechnologiesllc@Gmail.com

Application Deadline 29th January, 2019.

19
Latest Jobs Vacancies / Oando Plc Public Relations Internship 2019
« on: December 06, 2018, 05:39:57 pm »
Oando Plc is one of Africa’s largest integrated energy solutions provider with a proud heritage. It has a primary listing on the Nigeria Stock Exchange and a secondary listing on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. With shared values of Teamwork, Respect, Integrity, Passion and Professionalism (TRIPP).

If by some curious dose of fate, one of your wishes for the new year is to work at Oando, we might be able to make your wish come true. We are looking for a new PR intern. Finish this challenge and you are one step closer.

Applications are invited for:

Title: PR Internship
Location: Lagos
Duration: 6 Months
Description of Contest Objectives

Oando PLC (Contest Sponsors) initiated this competition to hire a PR intern. Out of the best PR plans shared from the entries, Oando PLC will select one PR Intern who will win a 6-month internship opportunity at Oando PLC Lagos office.
Platform(s):

Events from this contest will be announced and promoted on various Social Media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
Eligibility

Contestants must be 18 to 25 years on the date of entry into the contest.
Contestants must have a basic understanding of the media space in Nigeria.
Contestants must have good written and oral skills.
Contestants must be residents of Lagos, Nigeria.
Contestants must have a basic understanding of public relations.
The individual submitting the entry will be considered to be the contestant and will be the only individual eligible to compete for the prize. Organizations are not eligible to compete for the prize.
The following individuals are not eligible to participate in the contest:
Employees, interns, directors, and officers of Oando PLC or of any agencies, companies or entities involved in the administration, advertising, judging, creation, development, execution, and/or fulfillment of this contest, and the immediate family members (defined as spouse, recognized partner, parent, child, sibling, and spouse or “step” of each) and those living in the same household of each such individual.
Once a submission has been accepted for entry into the contest, the contestant’s name may be publicly identified.
Content Requirements

Submissions must not contain obscenity, explicit sexual material, nudity, profanity, graphic violence, calls or incitement to violence, commercial solicitation or commercial promotion. Submissions must not contain content that could be considered abusive, inflammatory, denigrating, or disrespectful to any of the Contest Sponsors, or to any groups, individuals or institutions. Submissions must adhere both in appearance and in fact to the norms of civil discourse in that the content of all submissions must be suitable for a global, public audience.
Submissions must be original content created by the contestant and must not contain any elements that are protected by someone else’s copyright or otherwise subject to third party intellectual property or proprietary rights, including privacy and publicity rights. Contest Sponsors recognize no allowance for “fair use” of copyrighted material, nor do Contest Sponsors recognize allowance for use of licensed materials created or owned by a third party.
Contest Sponsors reserve the right to disqualify, at their sole and absolute discretion, any submission that does not adhere to these criteria and to the intent and substance of these  Competition Terms and Conditions.
In the event of any question or difference of views regarding compliance with, interpretation, or application of these content requirements or other provisions of these  Competition Terms and Conditions, Contest Sponsors reserve the exclusive right to resolve such questions or differences of views in their sole discretion.
If submitting a photograph or other creative IP materials to the contest, the contestant affirms that he or she has obtained written consent from all individuals whose intellectual/creative property(ies) (image, likeness and/or any other works/property to which they have ownership) appears in the ad (or from the individuals’ parent/legal guardian if any such individuals are considered a minor in their country of residence), and that he or she has obtained the necessary rights, licenses, consents, and permissions to use all material such as music, images, text and other content in the submission. Failure to obtain such rights, license consents, and permissions may result in the disqualification of the submission at the Contest Sponsors’ sole and absolute discretion. Oando Energy Resources is not liable for any work submitted that has not obtained these rights, license consents and permissions.
Contest Sponsors do not endorse any submissions or messages expressed therein, and Contest Sponsors expressly disclaim any and all liability in connection with the submitted photos including disputes between collaborators related to a submission.
Contestant specifically agrees to give the Contest Sponsors permission to use all content submitted for purposes of judging the contest. Finalists and/or winners will be required to grant Contest Sponsors, with proper attribution through whatever means they deem appropriate, a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free, sub-licensable and transferable license to use, reproduce, distribute, prepare derivative works of, and/or display the submission in any media formats and through any media channels in perpetuity.
Contestant assumes sole responsibility for the contest submission and the material contained in it, and for any consequences of submitting or posting it.
Contest Sponsors reserve the right, at any time and in their sole discretion, to disqualify and/or deem ineligible any individual who they reasonably believe (i) has violated the  Competition Terms and Conditions; (ii) has violated the terms of use of platform, or (iii) is acting in a bad faith, or in an unsportsmanlike or disruptive manner, or with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass any other person.
Contestant agrees to indemnify and hold harmless Contest Sponsors, their parent, subsidiary and affiliated companies, officers, directors, employees, interns, and agents, from and against any and all claims, damages, obligations, losses, liabilities, costs or debts, and expenses (including but not limited to attorney’s fees) arising from (i) violation of these  Competition Terms and Conditions; (ii) violation of any third party right, including without limitation any copyright, trademark, intellectual property, privacy, publicity, or other proprietary right in connection with the contest; or (iii) any claim that a contest submission caused any harm, including financial, to any third party. These indemnification and hold harmless obligations will survive indefinitely beyond the conclusion of the contest.
Prize
Contest Prize(s):

Grand Prize: An opportunity to work with the corporate communications team as a PR intern in the Lagos office of Oando PLC at the Wings Office Complex, Lagos.
The winner will have to confirm the acceptance of the prize in an email reply within five working days. If the acceptance is not confirmed by the required date, the Contest Sponsors reserve the right to select an alternate winner.
General:

The Contest Sponsors shall have the right to change or terminate the activity immediately and without notice. In the event of such change or termination, all participants agree to waive any rights that they have in respect of this activity and acknowledge that they will have no recourse against the Contest Sponsors or its agents.
Neither the Contest Sponsors, its agents, its associated companies, nor any directors, officers nor employees of such, shall be liable for any loss or damage, whether direct, indirect, consequential or otherwise arising from any cause whatsoever, which may be suffered by the participant.
The Contest Sponsors have the right to use any material submitted for the purpose of this activity for marketing purposes.
If one or more of these terms and conditions are void and invalid, this will not affect the validity of the remaining conditions.
Any questions, complaints or comments about the activity can be made in writing and sent as an email to: internsearch@oandoplc.com
How to Apply
Interested and qualified candidates should:
Click Here to Apply


How to Enter

An entry is made when you choose a PR brief to work on and upload a PR plan here https://www.oandoplc.com/intern
The competition is open to all recent graduates / undergraduates living in Lagos. But where participants reside outside of Lagos, they will be responsible for their own accommodation and transportation.
Oando reserves the right to delay the internship start date.
Entries for stage 1 must be submitted by 5:00pm Saturday 8th December 2018.
Entries for stage 2 must be submitted by 5:00pm Friday 4th January 2019.
All entries must be submitted in PDF format or will not be considered.
All entries must have your name and contact details (phone number and email address) boldly written at the top of the document.
Stage 1 entries should not be me more than 1 pages long or will not be considered.
Stage 2 entries should not be me more than 2 pages long or will not be considered.
Entries not following Oando PLC across all social media platforms will not be considered.
Note

Once an entry is submitted, it is considered a final submission and may not be modified, edited, or replaced.
A submission must be your original work, developed by the contestant.
Stage one of the contest commences November 29, 2018, at 12:00 PM and entries may be submitted till December 8, 2018, 5:00pm.
Stage two of the contest commences December 14, 2018, at 12:00 PM and entries may be submitted till January 4, 2019, 5:00pm.
All time are in West African Time (WAT).
Only successful applicants will be contacted
Participation in this contest is deemed as acceptance of the above competition Terms and Conditions

20
OJ CAST (Nigeria) Limited is one of the dynamic construction and civil engineering companies in Nigeria. OJ CAST has delivered high quality integrated construction solutions to her teeming clientele. Our initial focus was renovations and sub-contract work through which we quickly penetrate the market and gained name for ourselves. Our success and reputation today are built on the consistent delivery of quality, speed, efficiency and overall client satisfaction.

Job Title: Administrative Officer
Location: Lagos

Responsibilities:

Manage office supplies stock and place orders
Prepare regular reports on expenses and office budgets
Maintain and update company databases
Organize a filing system for important and confidential company documents
Answer queries by employees and clients
Update office policies as needed
Maintain a company calendar and schedule appointments
Book meeting rooms as required
Distribute and store correspondence (e.g. letters, emails and packages)
Prepare reports and presentations with statistical data, as assigned
Arrange travel and accommodations
Schedule in-house and external events
Requirements:

Proven work experience as an Administrative Officer, Administrator or similar role
Solid knowledge of office procedures
Experience with office management software like MS Office (MS Excel and MS Word, specifically)
Strong organization skills with a problem-solving attitude
Excellent written and verbal communication skills
Attention to details
Qualification: BSc/HND or minimum of OND and must be a Lagos Resident.
 

Job Title: Computer Operator
Location: Lagos

Responsibilities:

Maintain and support all computer hardware and software systems
Oversee maintenance to equipment and keep systems up-to-date with operating systems upgrades
Ensure controls are set and run system-wide antivirus protections
Perform troubleshooting for various system errors
Evaluate connectivity issues, network equipment, and servers
Perform data backups and other maintenance requirements to ensure optimal performance
Ensure data and employee information is not at risk
Setup equipment and operation for new users and employees
Install, test, and monitor servers, firewalls, and new software as needed
Support team members with resolving computer issues
Monitor web performance, network availability, and security
Keep track in log of performance and malfunctions
Maintain peripheral devices to ensure all systems are functioning properly
Assist IT team and computer programmers as needed to install and test new upgrades and products
Job Requirements

High school degree or equivalent; associate or bachelor’s degree in computer technology, computer science, information systems, or related field preferred  but not required
Experience working with network and server management support
Excellent verbal and written communication skills
Comfortable in a diverse and fast-paced environment
Able to multitask, prioritize, and manage time efficiently
Up-to-date knowledge of new systems, information, software, hardware, and upgrades
Able to physically stand, bend, squat, and lift up computer equipment
Qualification: BSc/HND or minimum of OND and must be Lagos Resident.
 

Job Title: Inventory Officer
Location: Lagos

Responsibilities:

Devise ways to optimize inventory control procedures
Inspect the levels of business supplies and raw material to identify shortages
Ensure product stock is adequate for all distribution channels and can cover direct demand from customers
Record daily deliveries and shipments to reconcile inventory
Use software to monitor demand and document characteristics of inventory
Place orders to replenish stock avoiding insufficiencies or excessive surplus
Analyze data to anticipate future needs
Evaluate suppliers to achieve cost-effective deals and maintain trust relationships
Collaborate with warehouse employees and other staff to ensure business goals are met
Report to upper management on stock levels, issues etc.
Requirements:

Proven experience as inventory officer or similar position
Excellent knowledge of data analysis and forecasting methods
Working knowledge of inventory management software (e.g. ERP)
Ability to accurately track inventory and create reports
An analytical mind with strong math skills
Excellent organizational and planning skills
Outstanding communication and interpersonal abilities
Reliable and trustworthy
Qualification: BSc/HND or minimum of OND and must be a Lagos Resident.
How to Apply
Interested candidates should forward their detailed CV’s to: hr.ojcastnigltd@Gmail.com

Application Deadline 13th December, 2018.

21
Religion and Philosophy / How do we know God?
« on: December 06, 2018, 01:16:16 pm »


It is always more rational to believe in God than to believe there is no God. In fact, belief in God is much more rational than atheism. But the atheist’s denial of God is an emotional reaction, not a logical one. Faith in God is not a possession, or an experience. It is actually a decision you make. It’s based on reasons, facts, and desire, just like most of life’s decisions. The Bible doesn’t set out to prove God exists, but instead begins with the knowledge everyone everywhere already possesses that God does exist and everyone knows it. Genesis 1:1 says, ‘In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.’ The primary way in which everyone knows God, is through His creation. Its presence in the world is a proof of the existence of God. Psalm 19 is one of the well-known psalms in the Bible.
 
This extraordinary psalm of King David, written 3,000 years ago, demonstrates not only what a profound thinker, theologian, and poet he was, but how he adored the Lord and his word. His view of God is expressed by majestic and inspiring poetry. It challenges our intellect and our affections.
 
In this psalm, David pays attention to what creation says about the glory of God, what scriptures teach us about the righteousness of God, and how we ought to respond to revelations of God. Psalm 19:1 says,‘ The heavens are telling of the glory of God; and their expanse is declaring the work of his hands.’ David opens his psalm by observing the ‘speech of creation’ to glorify God: It is no secret. God put his works on permanent display. The revelation of God’s glory has been written in two volumes. There is, first, The Book of Natural Creation which unveils the splendour of God in space and stars and the skies above. Second, there is the volume of the Holy Scripture. David is telling us that the world around and above us is the media by which God is speaking to mankind and speaking very forcefully. He is not whispering or hinting to people on this planet that he is glorious. God’s media declare and proclaim this message intelligibly, ‘God’s own hands made this world and he is glorious.’
 
When we talk of ‘media’, we generally refer to TV and radio, newspapers and magazines, films, Internet and so on. Media means the ways and means by which a message with certain content comes to us. All politicians use all the media they can at this moment to reach us with their messages. So David is telling us that God uses means to communicate with the people who live on this planet. God speaks through his creation; it has been made with such skill and beauty that it has one clear and consistent message.
 
It is the divine media by which his word gets through to the human race. It is a declaration of himself via nature; it is natural revelation. It is available to everyone and it is saying, ‘God is glorious and God’s hands made this world,’ and it is saying this constantly and clearly. Just think of that; that no one is ignorant of God. Simply by opening your eyes and ears and seeing creation, you are looking at the divinely created and sustained media, which is bringing the message that God is powerful and glorious.
 
The psalmist wants us to look up and see all the wondrous things God has created. The sky is preaching the glory of God every day. Creation doesn’t exist to proclaim creation’s praise but that of its Creator. The universe is wondrous indeed, but only because it is the ‘work of his hands’.
 
Follow Bishop Lalachan Abraham at speakingtree.in

22
1) Travel more and sooner

“We’ll start traveling next year honey”, and 20 years later you wonder where the time has gone by. In another 20 years, you probably won’t be able to hike up that mountain or trail to see the view. Do yourself a favor and stop procrastinating on exploring the beautiful world we are born into.

2) Enjoy food with your loved ones
With all the new diet trends and obsession to be healthy and fit, you often find yourself to be the only one eating a grilled chicken salad with half the dressing while you’re out with friends or family. Eating clean is undoubtedly great for your body, but balancing your diet out once in awhile doesn’t hurt either. Those couple hundred calories won’t matter over the years, but the memories and laughter you share with your loved ones are forever.

3) Do what you love
Your happiness matters much more than money. If making 120k a year meant that you would be miserable, please do yourself a favor and pick a happy and enjoyable life with the job that pays you 70k instead. Your job will one of the biggest, if not biggest part of your life. It’s where one spends the most time, meets most of their post-college and life-long friends. Make sure you do something you love. Being constantly stressed has many side effects for your body, such as weight gain, weakened immune system, and brain fog.

4) Leave no regrets
The last thing anyone wants is to have regrets when they’re in retirement. This goes for anything, from pondering what if you just talked to that cute guy from class to wishing you could have taken the job offer and moved to Australia. Whatever it is, please do it while you’re young and rid your life of regrets, they’re honestly the worst.

5) Stay in touch with your old friends
All it takes is a simple message once a year to catch up and it is actually incredibly beneficial for you according to an 80-year study done at Harvard. “Those who were happiest and healthier reported strong interpersonal relationships, while those who were isolated had declines in mental and physical health as they aged.”

6) Don’t work so hard
Everything around you happens so fast. Your children’s first baseball game, your parents’ birthday, your spouse’s recital. Working hard is good, but making a conscious effort to have a more balanced lifestyle will make sure you don’t miss out on the precious moments of life. You can always make more money and work harder 20 years from now, but you can never rewatch your kid’s game that you missed.

7) Save up your money
Starting today, put away a part of your paycheck every single month into a savings account. It’s a simple change in habit and will be sure to save you a ton of stress down the road.

8) Being happy is more important than being right
Your relationship with your significant other is one of the most precious things ever, and everyone should make an active effort to deeply cherish it. Challenges will arise and fights are bound to happen. Just remember that in the midst of all of the fighting, both of you were brought up differently. What seems like common sense to one could seem absurd to the other, and absolute right’s and wrong’s does not help a fight end any faster. Instead, ask yourself if you care more about being happy with your partner or being right about this one singular issue. Listen to each other, be honest, be vulnerable about your feelings, try your best to be empathetic, and your marriage/relationship will blossom throughout the years.

9) You will inevitably make enemies
It’s impossible to avoid, so please don’t sweat it too much. Simply take away what you can from the situation and take it as a learning experience. Life is too short to worry about your enemies.

10) You are who you surround yourself with
If your friends are always negative, discouraging your ambitions, and bringing you down, they may still be friends, but they are definitely not the people you should be hanging out with every week. Change your inner circle immediately. There are plenty of like-minded positive individuals out there, you simply have to go out and meet them.

Just remember, it’s never too late to take this advice and implement it into your daily life. A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, and you can make a positive change in your life along every step of the way.


23


1. Less Traveled
People wish they had traveled more. Big trips with friends and family – to Disney, Paris, or even road trips to the cottage are things that are remembered later in life. [1,3]

2. Never learned another language
This would make all of those vacations even better by immersing us in a whole new culture.[1,3]

3. Relationship regrets
Staying in a bad romantic relationship or failing to end friendships when people have grown apart is a cause for disappointment.[1]

On the other hand, others often lament that they let their marriage breakdown, or lost touch with good friends over the years.[2,3]

4. Allowed fear to stop them from trying something.
A study conducted by the insurance company, Allianz, showed that being more adventurous was cited as a regret by a quarter of survey participants. You don’t have to jump out of a plane, but if there’s something you’ve always wanted to do, go outside of your comfort zone and try it.[1,4]

5. Overlooked their health
• Did not maintain a good diet and exercise routine
As people age, diet and exercise plays an even bigger part in staying healthy and mobile.  Find the best diet for you based on your DNA, and try these 7-minute exercises starting today.

• Neglected their teeth
Dentures do not have to be your destiny. Practice good oral hygiene and visit your dentist for regular checkups.[1]

• Did not use sunscreen
As we get older wrinkles begin to appear, but even worse is the danger of skin cancer. We can use what we know now to reduce our chances of the bad effects of sun exposure without sunscreen.[1]

6. Stayed in a toxic or stagnant job
You spend many hours a day at work, so if you’re working for a mean boss, or you’re not feeling challenged enough, take steps to do something about it sooner rather than later.[1]

7. Education
People often wish they had not dropped out of high school, tried harder, or had completed a college or university degree. [3]

8. Were unhappy with themselves.
Don’t sacrifice your happiness by wasting too much time being concerned about body image or looks. Realize you are more than how you look and strive to be the best you, you can be.[1]

9. Said “I love you” too rarely.
No one lives forever, and life can change in the blink of an eye. Tell people you love how you feel to avoid being sad that you missed out after they’ve gone.[1,4]

10. Didn’t listen to advice from parents.
Your parents have more life experience than you do, so while you must live your own life, it doesn’t hurt to consider their advice a little more carefully before making your decision.[1]

11. Were self-absorbed.
Take a lesson from people who report feeling embarrassed reflecting on times in their life when they only thought of themselves and never considered the feelings of others.[1]

12. Supported others while neglecting themselves.
The opposite of #11, if we spent all our time trying to help others at the expense of our own happiness this can cause feelings of regret.[1]

13. Took too long to move on from past failures.
You made mistakes along the way. Forgive yourself and move on. Wasting time being stuck in the past when you could have been living life joyfully is unproductive.[1]

14. Held a grudge.
Life is too short, especially to let years go by without speaking to a beloved family member or friend over a simple misunderstanding. Swallow your pride and be the bigger person.[1]

15. Didn’t stand up for themselves.

This one may go all the way back to the time you allowed yourself to be bullied in grade school. Don’t dwell on the past, use those lessons to make sure you assert yourself now.[1]

16. Lack of volunteering in the community.
Being involved in charities or helping those less fortunate than you are promotes a sense of purpose in life, and this opportunity should not be missed.[1]

17. Never found out their history through grandparents.
Unfortunately, some memories are gone once your loved ones pass away. Jot down or record some family stories from aging relatives to reminisce over and pass on to younger generations.[1]

18. Was a workaholic
Not only is your enjoyment of life impinged on, but family and friendships suffer too. It’s much more fulfilling to have a good work-life balance.[3]

19. Failed to stop and smell the roses.
Going through life being too serious and never knowing how to find humor in everyday life is literally no fun! [1,3]

20. Never finished what they started.
You lose the sense of accomplishment you feel after completion if you give up on everything you try without following through. Stick with it. It’s worth it.[1]

21. Got involved with the wrong group of friends.
Friends that lead you down the wrong path early in life can leave you with bad feelings or even a criminal record that follows you through your life. Choose your friends carefully.[3]

22. Parenting guilt.
Spend enough time playing with the kids and teaching them life lessons. Kids remember your presence more than your presents. [1,2,3]

23. Cared too much about what others thought.
This is a biggie. Many wish they had the self-confidence and courage to live life without trying to live up to the expectations of others. Parents, gender roles, and cultural expectations often keep us from living the life we desire. Remember this is your life to live, not theirs. [1,3]

“What other people think of me is none of my business.”  ~ Eleanor Roosevelt [5]

24. Spent too much time on phones and computers.
Track and limit the amount of time you spend checking email and social media. It can take away from quality time with family and friends and you can never get that lost time back.[2,3]

25. Took people for granted.
We are often the kindest to strangers and the most unkind to those we love. Remember that they may not always be around. Appreciate and express gratitude for what others do for you.  [2]

26. Didn’t trust gut instincts.
Hindsight is 20/20. Maybe you’ve had a feeling that you ignored and later it turned out you were right. Factor in your intuition when it manifests itself. [2]

27. Put off seeing their favorite band on tour.
Everyone knows bands break up, stop touring or worse, a member passes away. We often procrastinate and think we will “do that next year,” but it never happens.[1]

28. Didn’t follow their passion.
This could be related to education, career, travel, or love. Maybe instead of applying for that dream job you chose a practical job instead. Or perhaps you still regret asking that girl to the prom all those years ago and it still haunts you. Don’t always take the path of least resistance. Take a chance. Your life may not change, but you won’t be left with a bunch of “what if’s” when you look back.[2,3]

29. Lack of courage to get up and talk at a funeral, wedding or another important event.
Speaking on a special occasion is an honor. It allows us to pay our respects to the person who is being celebrated that day, and the chance to impact others who have gathered for the event. Fear of getting emotional or what other’s think may prevent someone from following through on speaking at such an event. See #4 and #23. [3]

30. Didn’t make time to visit a dying friend before he died or got too ill.
This is one regret that we can’t remedy once the person has passed away. We need to have enough foresight to make time for friends and family, especially when they are ailing.[3]

The good news is — you’re still here! Start making your bucket list now to enjoy the time you have with the ones you love before it’s too late. For further inspiration, check out some advice from this 24-year-old terminal cancer patient.

24
Health and Welfare / 8 More Surprising Facts About the Brain
« on: December 06, 2018, 12:59:45 pm »


It’s also interesting to note that the average adult brain weighs about 3 pounds and only about 6 inches long.

1. The human brain is about 73% water. And 63% of the ‘dry’ mass is actually fat; in fact, your brain is the fattiest organ in your body.

2. Your brain has about 86 billion neurons (this is what “grey matter” refers to) and billions of nerve fibers (“white matter”). In fact, humans have more neurons per brain area than any other animal we know of. In order to pack that many neurons into one space, our brains have those recognizable “folds”.

3. “The more complicated a brain gets, the more gyri and sulci, or wiggly hills and valleys, it has,” says Eric Holland, a neurosurgeon and cancer biologist at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the University of Washington.

4. You have over 10,000 unique types of neurons- not all brain cells are alike!

5. Humans also have the largest frontal lobe of any known animal. This area of the brain is responsible for complex thought which allows us to understand abstract concepts, plan for the future, and so much more!

6. Your brain is divided into two hemispheres, and although they’re not exactly identical (for example, your linguistic capabilities usually live mostly in your left hemisphere), there isn’t much evidence for people being ‘left’ or ‘right’ brained.

7. While we’re myth-busting, it’s a complete falsehood that humans only use 10% of their brain at a time. You’re always using your whole brain, even when you’re sleeping! But different brain activities fire off different series of neurons.

8. Restrictive diets can actually cause the brain to “eat” itself. If you’re not providing your body enough food to send energy to your brain, it will use brain cells as a last resort to keep running.

Watching this video gives us a better appreciation for neurosurgeons. The human brain is a lot more vulnerable than it might seem!

25
Latest Jobs Vacancies / DVM Technologies New Job Opportunity
« on: December 06, 2018, 12:48:55 pm »
DVM Technologies is recruiting suitably qualified candidates to fill the position below:

Job Title: Agricultural Implementation Engineer
Location: Lagos

The Position

Must have experience in farm management and must be detailed oriented with knowledge in agricultural technology
Should be willing to perform other task as assigned.
We’re looking for an Agricultural Implementation Engineer
The role would oversee the design and building structure for live stock farming as well as crop farming from start to finish.
Benefit

Great Pay, Flexibility.
How to Apply
Interested and qualified candidates should send their Applications to: dvmtechnologiesllc@Gmail.com

Application Deadline 29th January, 2019

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