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10 clever ways to use vinegar in the garden

10 clever ways to use vinegar in the garden

Vinegar is one of the most versatile ingredients sitting in your pantry, waiting for you to use it and reap its wide range of benefits.  This handy ingredient is already well-known for its ability to eliminate odors, freshen up the fridge, kill bathroom germs, tidy up a toilet, renew paint brushes, lose the carpet stain, stop static cling, and many more. But, did you know that vinegar can be safely used in the garden as well?

Here are some of the top ways to use vinegar around the garden where your plants and veggies spend their days:

1. Kill weeds

Why send a little fortune on toxic chemicals to kill weeds in the garden when something as simple and inexpensive as vinegar can do the trick? Simply pour apple cider vinegar on the weeds and the acetic acid will stop the weed growth without affecting the soil.

2. Get rid of ants

Ants cannot stand the strong smell of vinegar, so you can keep them away by mixing equal parts f water and vinegar in a spray bottle and attacking their nests with the mixture.  Both apple cider vinegar and white vinegar work well.

3. Freshen flowers

To keep your bouquet of flower fresh longer, add two tablespoons of vinegar and a teaspoon of sugar to water, and add the flowers.

4. Clean rust from tools

If your water spigot, hoe or rake is getting grimy, simply soak it in undiluted vinegar overnight.  The spigot can be cleaned by filling a plastic bag with vinegar and tying it over the spout so that it stays fully submerged.

5. Clean the birdbath

Scrub the birdbath with undiluted water.  Rinse with plain water when done.

6. Feed your plants

Certain plants like Holly, Begonias, and Gardenias prefer acidic soil. You can add extra acidic touch to those plants by spritzing them with a mixture of a gallon of water with a cup of white vinegar.

7. Test the pH level of your soil

The acid level in the soil can largely affect how well the plants grow. A good way to test the pH level of you soil is by putting a bit of soil in a container and then add half a cup of vinegar. If the vinegar starts to frizzle, the soil is too alkaline. To even out its acidity, add peat moss or sulfur.

8. Clean pots

Mix a part of water with a part of white distilled vinegar. Soak plastic, clay, or glazed pots in the solution for an hour to remove mineral deposits and stubborn stains.

9. Kill slugs and snails

Keep these plant-eaters away by spritzing some undiluted vinegar. These pesky plant-eaters will wither away.

10. Remove allergens from your hands

If you have been digging in the dirt with your hands, it is highly recommended to wash the hands with white distilled vinegar.  It will prevent any itching by removing allergens and debris from the skin.

11 Astonishing Traits Of a Highly Sensitive Person

11 Astonishing Traits Of a Highly Sensitive Person

Do you find noisy environment chaotic and grow uncomfortable in such places? Are you indecisive and need more time making decisions than others? Have you ever been told that you take things too personally?

If any of this sounds familiar, you might be a highly sensitive person. This personality trait is quite common, affecting one in five people. But, despite the fact that 15-20% of the population is highly sensitive, these people are considered a minority.

Being a highly sensitive person means you have a number of amazingly positive qualities and habits. While you might not feel that these traits are awesome, they really are.

1. They are deeply intuitive

One of the most exceptional characteristics of highly sensitive individuals is their ability to feel a lot more depth compared to non-sensitive people. They also tend to dig into subjects or engage in conversations more than others. According to , Ted Zeff Ph.D., author of ‘The Highly Sensitive Person’s Survival Guide’,  “They’re very intuitive, and go very deep inside to try to figure things out.”

2. Their emotional reactions are amplified

Sensitive people tend to conduct themselves much more compassionately and act with much more concern for the emotions of others.

3. They are familiar with being called overly sensitive and asked why they take things so personally

Dr. Ted Zeff found that men from India and Thailand were less likely to be teased for being sensitive, unlike those from North America who were often mocked.  In some cultures the same person who is being laughed at for being too sensitive is considered as asset.

4. They have a really hard time making decisions

A highly sensitive person is always more conscious even in situations where there is no wrong or right answer.  They are quite indecisive, weighing out the pros and cons and considering even the tiniest details.

5. About 30% of highly sensitive people are not introverts

As explained by Dr. Aron, highly sensitive people who are not introverts were probably grown in small town or a close-knit social environment where social interaction is inevitable.

6. They are excellent team players

Highly sensitive individuals are excellent team members and work partners due to their ability to process thoughts more deeply than others. But, they shouldn’t be left to make the final decision! For instance, they would do well at diagnosing the patient, but someone else will need to make the final decision.

7. They are more likely to be depressed or anxious

“If you’ve had a fair number of bad experiences, especially early in life, so you don’t feel safe in the world or you don’t feel secure at home or … at school, your nervous system is set to ‘anxious,” explains Aron.

But, not all sensitive individuals will develop anxiety. As a matter of fact, having supportive people around can help prevent this condition.

8. Annoying sounds are extremely irritating to the highly sensitive

As everything is intensified to highly sensitive people, certain sounds or fluorescent light that normally don’t bother most people are enough to bring highly sensitive people to the extent of going insane.

9. They are well-mannered

As Dr. Aron notes, highly sensitive people are extremely conscientious, so they are more likely to act kindly towards other people and show good manners.

10. They feel the effects of criticism much more than most

What non-sensitive people consider trivial tends to affect the highly sensitive people more severely. Hence, it causes them to engage in avoidance tactics or revert to self-criticism and avoid it.

11. They prefer to either be self-employed or work in a quiet cubicle

Generally speaking, highly sensitive people prefer to be self-employed and work from home as they have more control over what goes on a daily basis.  Those who don’t have this luxury would prefer working in a quiet cubicle.

5 Step Thyroid Healing Plan Reduces Inflammation, Improves Poor Metabolism, And Overcomes Fatigue

5 Step Thyroid Healing Plan Reduces Inflammation, Improves Poor Metabolism, And Overcomes Fatigue

The thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped organ situated in the base of the neck. It releases hormones which keep the metabolism in check, which is basically how the body utilizes energy. Thyroid`s hormones regulate many vital functions, such as:

  • Body weight
  • Heart rate
  • Breathing
  • Muscle strength
  • Menstrual cycles
  • Body temperature
  • Central and peripheral nervous systems
  • Cholesterol levels

The Role Of The Thyroid

The thyroid is in charge of making, storing, and releasing hormones in the bloodstream. These hormones are known as T3 (liothyronine) and T4 (levothyroxine), both of which deal with every cell in the body and work in synergy to control body`s functions.

Lack of these hormones causes hypothyroidism, while too much of these hormones accelerates the heart rate and is known as hyperthyroidism.

Symptoms of too little T3 and T4 in your body (hypothyroidism):
  • Dry skin and hair
  • Depression
  • Sensitivity to cold temperature
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Frequent, heavy periods
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Tiredness and fatigue
  • Difficulty concentrating
Symptoms of too much T3 and T4 in your body (hyperthyroidism):
  • Sweating or sensitivity to high temperatures
  • Hand trembling (shaking)
  • Anxiety
  • Hair loss
  • Missed or light menstrual periods
  • Irritability or moodiness
  • Nervousness, hyperactivity

There are various reasons why one might be experiencing a thyroid malfunction. They might be lacking iodine or any other essential nutrient. Graves is an autoimmune disease which can also affect hormone production. Plummer`s is another condition which impacts hormone production by forming benign lumps on the thyroid gland.

Other conditions which are associated with thyroid issues include inflammation, mental stress, pregnancy, environmental toxins, and physical and emotional stress.

Healing Your Thyroid

While many foods are known to positive or negatively affect thyroid health, there is an ancient and very simple Tibetan practice which works wonders for any thyroid condition and improves its health in an all-natural way. This 5-step process can bring your thyroid to its healthy state and regulate the hormone levels naturally.

The process is based on bring the energy of the thyroid back in balance. Opening the energy flow through this gland helps balance both hypothyroid and hyperthyroid conditions as this flow controls homeostasis. But, it takes regular practice to maintain this state.

Step 1: Rub the palms together to heat them. Then, place them to the spot where the thyroid is situated and hold for about ten minutes.

Step 2:  Swallow the saliva in your mouth and sip water three times in a row.

Step 3: Exhale, and tilt your head in the meantime. Place the chin on the chest, holding it for a couple of seconds without inhaling. When you start inhaling, take a deep breath and lift the head and tighten the neck muscles. Place the lower lip over the upper lip, and follow through it while lifting the head. Hold the head at this position for a couple of seconds, and then exhale.

Step 4: With the head of the chest, tilt the head first to the left and then to the right, without raising the chin from the chest. This works as a great massage for the thyroid gland.

Step 5: Lift the head while inhaling and repeat this process from step 3, ten times.

12 Foods That Should Be Part of Your Breakfast Every Morning

12 Foods That Should Be Part of Your Breakfast Every Morning

Have you heard the saying “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper?” Breakfast is indeed the most important meal of the day, which is why you need to make sure you include the right ingredients in your morning meal.

Breakfast is filling the body with the energy and nutrients needed for the day, so putting in some greasy, salty, or sugary ingredients increases the risk for a blocked artery and does more harm than good.

Here are 12 healthy and energizing ingredients that need to be included in your breakfast to make it power-packed and nutrient-dense, fitting for a champion.

1. Go Fruity

Getting all the vitamins, minerals, fiber, water, and antioxidants from fruits like bananas, kiwis, oranges, and apples will boost your immunity and make you feel refreshed, focused, and ready to seize the day. Having them as salad or juices is the best way to have them for breakfast.

2. Berrylicious

Abundant in antioxidants, berries like strawberries, cranberries, blueberries, and raspberries are also relatively low in calories and capable of reducing blood cholesterol levels, purifying the blood, improving heart function, slowing down aging, and unclogging skin`s pores.  As little as handful of those in the oatmeal is enough to add the needed healthy and energy boost to your meal.

3. Feel Egg-tastic

Eggs are always a good idea, as they are tasty and packed with protein and calcium. These properties help keep blood sugar levels in check and lower the risk of heart disease.  The egg yolk is abundant in antioxidants which improve the eyesight and improve the liver, heart, and brain function as well. You can eat them boiled, scrambled, or sunny side up!

4. Grab Some Greek Yogurt

Being the tasty, filling, calcium-packed, and probiotic-rich option, yogurt helps keep pH levels balanced, stimulates the growth of good bacteria in the gut, boosts the metabolism, lowers the risk of breast cancer, and unclogs the pores. Adding some honey and fruits to it is a great breakfast combination!

5. Cottage Cheese

Cottage cheese is packed with protein, calcium, and probiotics, all of which strengthen the bones, repair body`s damage cells, boost the metabolism, and control random cravings, triggered by the hormone ghrelin. Combined with toast, eggs, and ham make it a mouth-watering brekkie.

6. Feeling Nutty?

Abundant in essential oils, nuts are one of the best ways to get the essential and plant-sourced vitamin E and fatty acids, which help diminish the damage caused by free radicals, purify the blood, reduce inflammation, keep blood sugar levels in check, promote heart health, and strengthen the hair follicles. You can eat them alone or combined with some oatmeal.

7. You Ought To Eat Some Oatmeal

Those who are fond of cereals like corn flakes should swap them for fiber-rich oatmeal which is effective in keeping the digestive tract healthy. Oats are also known as beta-glucan, meaning that they are filling and effective in regulating cholesterol level and reducing blood pressure levels. Mix them with Chia seeds and honey for a wholesome and tasty breakfast.

8. Chia Seeds

Chia seeds are an excellent source of fiber, which balances the gut and promotes a healthy digestive system.  It also regulates blood sugar and blood pressure levels, protects body`s cells, and repairs damage at a cellular level. Combined with toast or blended with berries and yogurt turns them into a delicious meal.

9. Fill Your Racks With Flax

Flaxseeds reduce abnormal cell growth in the body, balance insulin levels, and regulate blood sugar levels in the body.  It is one of the richest sources of protein, which makes it a great option for vegetarians. It is recommended to grind flaxseeds to a powder to ensure easier digestion and assimilation of nutrients.

10. Glow with Green Tea

Green tea is a healthy beverage which cleanses the organs, hydrates the skin, combats bad bacteria, improves concentration, reduces mood swings, fights diabetes, and even protects the nervous system and the heart against any damage.  It is recommended to have a cup of green tea after a breakfast or on an empty stomach.

11. Shake Some Protein In Your Body

There are many different forms of protein shakes, including homemade recipes and those available as brands. The popular options include soy, egg, and whey, all of which reduce cravings, control blood sugar levels, balance the metabolism, and even help build muscles.

12. Care For A Cup Of Coffee?

Caffeine is believed to improve brain`s function performance, by increasing concentration and alertness, improving your mood and keeping mood swings in check. It also promotes colon and bladder health, acts as laxative and diuretic, and burns excess fat.  To make your own caffeine-based shake, blend half a teaspoon of coffee with milk, peanut butter, and some flaxseeds.

The 10 Most Effective Hormone-Balancing Foods For Accelerating Metabolism and Losing Weight

The 10 Most Effective Hormone-Balancing Foods For Accelerating Metabolism and Losing Weight

Insulin and glucagon are hormones responsible for the regulation of blood sugar levels.  The first once lowers blood sugar while the latter raises it.  Balance between these hormones is of utmost importance in order to keep healthy blood sugar levels. The pancreas is the most important part of the endocrine system for regulating blood sugar.  Meals including protein-rich foods, fiber, and good fats are of utmost importance when it comes to regulation of blood glucose.

Protein

Protein keeps blood sugar levels in check as it doesn’t affect them. But, it has been shown to induce rapid gluconeogenesis, which is the production of glucose in those with an insulin deficiency.  This is why swapping carbohydrates for protein will not protect you from a sugar spike. As a matter of fact, certain protein and carbohydrate-rich whole foods won’t spike your blood sugar.

Proteins Manufacture Hormones

When you consume protein-rich foods, the body breaks it down into amino acids which are utilized by the body to produce hormones.

Good Sources Of Protein

Protein should cover about ten percent of your daily calorie intake, which equals about 46 grams for women and 56 grams for men.

Beans

Beans are loaded with protein and they contain up to 13 types of protein. They are quite versatile and can be made into dips, spreads, or burgers.

Lentils

A 100-gram serving of raw lentils has about 20-30 grams of protein. Lentils are packed with amino acids, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants needed for optimal health. They are very diverse and can be added to foods like chili, tacos, soups, salads, omelets, burritos, and many more.

Spirulina

Spirulina is dried and powdered seaweed which is available in the form of a plain powder or pills.  A tablespoon of spirulina provides 4 grams of protein, 40 grams of vitamin A, and up to 95 grams of potassium.

Healthy Fat

A diet high in junk foods that are packed with unhealthy fats can lead to insulin resistance, which occurs when cells lose their ability to respond to insulin properly. According to a study involving 1,703 subjects, eating healthy fats decreased blood glucose and blood pressure levels within a week.

Hormones From Healthy Fat Let You Know When You’re Full

The fat you eat ends up in the adipose tissue where it is stored for further use. Being part of the endocrine system, the adipose tissue produces and regulates hormones like leptin, which tells you when you are full.

Good Sources Of Fat

Avocado

One avocado contains 29 grams of fat, very little sodium, almost no sugar, and no cholesterol or trans fat. You can use it as healthier alternative to butter, mayo and other fatty products.

Nuts And Nut Butters

Nuts are packed with minerals like magnesium, iron, calcium, and just like any other healthy fat, they are cholesterol-free and low on sodium and sugar. Add nuts to your oatmeal or salad and enjoy a tablespoon of nut butter on your toast.

Flax Seeds

A tablespoon of ground flax seeds contains 3 grams of fat, so it is not as nuts or avocado. But, it does contain solid amounts of omega-3 fats and minerals.

Fiber

Glucose and insulin levels typically spike after a meal, but eating fiber-dense foods helps prevent them. Fiber is digested slowly, so it takes some time to completely empty the stomach.

Fiber Clears Excess Hormones

Fiber clears excess hormones, particularly sex hormones. It has been scientifically shown that postmenopausal women who eat plenty of fiber have lower levels of estrogen in their blood.

Good Sources Of Fiber

Split Peas

A cup of split peas has 50 grams of fiber. Green split peas are also packed with calcium, phosphorus, potassium, and vitamins A and K.  You can add them to salads, soups, and other lighter foods.

Wholegrain Foods

When you purchase flour, pasta or other grain products, opt form brown grains and avoid white ones like white pasta or white rice. The more refined, the more of its fiber is lost.

Fruit

Fruit is the easiest way to get fiber. A cup of passion fruit provides 24.5 grams of fiber, an avocado provides 13.5 grams of fiber, and a cup of raspberries provides 8 grams of fiber.

After Reading This, You Will Start Eating Cucumbers Every Day!

After Reading This, You Will Start Eating Cucumbers Every Day!

There is nothing more refreshing than munching on fresh cucumbers on a hot, summer day.  This is not surprising though, given that cucumber is made of up to 96% water.

However, cucumbers are also known for their nutritional profile and wide range of health benefits as well.  They are relatively low in calories, packed with electrolytes, and high in many nutrients.

They are very easy to grow and are widely cultivated all around the world.  They come in various shapes, colors, and sizes, but most of them are green with a rich flesh and tiny, edible seeds.

If you don’t harvest them on time, they will increase in size and the skin will turn yellow and harder.  The seeds will turn yellow as well, and shouldn’t be consumed. The good news is that fresh cucumbers are available all year round!

Here are some of the reasons why you should consume cucumbers on a daily basis:

1. Mineral Content

Cucumbers are packed with minerals, such as magnesium, silicon, and potassium, all of which are needed for optimal health and proper function of the entire body.

2. Vitamin Content

Cucumbers contain virtually all the vitamins needed for optimal health. For instance, they are packed with vitamins A, B, and C, all of which are known to boost immunity and energy levels.

3. Toxin Removal

As mentioned in the very beginning, cucumbers are mostly water.  The high water content makes them effective in eliminating toxic waste from the body and easier elimination of kidney stones.

4. Moisturize the Body

Again, being over 90% water, cucumbers hydrate the entire body and moisturize the skin.

5. Promote Joint Health

The silicon content in cucumbers strengthens the connective tissues and joints, promoting joint health. When combined with carrots, they treat arthritic and gout pain by reducing uric acid in the system.

6. Fight Cancer

Cucumbers contain lariciresinol, pinoresinol, and secoisolariciresinol, lignans which prevent various cancer types, such as cancer in the uterus, prostate, ovaries, and breasts.

7. Promote Kidney Health

Regular consumption of cucumbers keeps the kidneys healthy by reducing uric acid in the body.

8. Promote Weight Loss and Healthy Digestion

Being high in water and low in calories, cucumbers are an excellent weight loss tool. In addition, they are an excellent source of fiber which improves digestion and prevents constipation.

9. Promote Healthy Gums and Remove Bad Breath

The juices released when you munch on cucumber reduce inflammation and heal the gums. They are also rich in phystochemicals which fight off bacteria and bad breath.

10. Fights Solar Damage

Regular consumption of cucumbers regulates skin`s acidity while the topical use of this veggie heals sunburns.

11. Promote Hair and Nail Health

The silicon and sulfur present in cucumbers strengthen the hair and nails and stimulate their growth.

12. Treat Hangover

The high electrolyte and vitamin B content helps treat hangovers and headaches, so make sure you have a few cucumber slices before bedtime if you have consumed alcohol earlier.

13. Remove Dark Circles

Cucumbers are effective in removing dark circles and swelling under the eyes, probably due to their anti-inflammatory properties.

14. Tasty and Versatile

Last but not least, cucumbers are delicious and highly versatile. You can add them to juices, salads, appetizers, and many more!

Low-calorie Cucumber Recipe

Ingredients:
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 cup red onion, chopped
  • 2 cups cucumber, finely chopped peeled and seeded
  • 1/2 cup tomato, cut into small pieces
  • 1 chili (jalapeño, tree, etc.) chopped and without seeds
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 2 tsp fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt (you can also use cottage cheese/ricotta)
  • 1-1 / 2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1-1 / 2 teaspoon lime juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
Instructions:
  • Mix the garlic, red onion, cucumber, tomato, chili, parsley, and cilantro in a small bowl
  • Mix the Greek yogurt, lemon juice, lime juice, sea salt, and ground cumin in a separate bowl
  • Pour the cucumber mixture in the bowl with the rest of the ingredients and mix well
  • Serve with a whole-grain toast
Here is a 2-ingredient DIY remedy for getting rid of brown spots on your skin

Here is a 2-ingredient DIY remedy for getting rid of brown spots on your skin

Age spots seem to be an inevitable part of our lives.  As Drew of the YouTube channel Fitlife explains, Everybody’s got them: old, young, middle-aged, men and women.”

These tiny brown spots typically appear on the skin after a sun exposure, but they might also be a sign of aging.  This is the reason why individuals over the age of 50 are most prone to developing them.  As mentioned above, they might pop on the skin after spending time in the sun as well, so at the peak of summer days, you might notice them on your skin.

What causes them?

Sun spots develop due to ultraviolet rays from the sun.  When the skin is exposed to these rays, the body starts producing melanin in an effort to tan the skin, building up a shield to protect the deeper skin layers.  So, age spots typically appear on the body parts that are the most exposed to the sun, such as face, neck, shoulders, and arms.

Although dark spots are harmless in most cases, if you notice some are darker, have shaped borders, or have been growing rapidly, consult a doctor. In addition, you should visit a doctor right away if they are tender, red, or bleeding.

What to do about them?

Given that age spots are not dangerous and are not associated with any health issues, treatment is not needed.  Still, most people want to remove them as they don’t like the way they look on their skin.

Prescription Medications

Doctors typically prescribe bleaching creams to fade the age spots. These creams contain hydroquinone, with or without retinoids like tretinoin. They work gradually and usually take a few months to fade the spots.  The treatment also requires wearing sunscreen at all times since these cream makes the skin more sensitive to UV rays and damage.

Medical Procedures

There are also a few medical procedures being used to treat age spots. The most common include:

Home Treatments

Ultimately, there are various homemade treatments which are claimed to work wonders for age spots. The one presented below was developed by Dr. Doug Willen, D.C. NYC nutrition expert and author of Quantum Paleo.

To make this solution, dice fresh onion and place the pieces in a bag. Take some heavy object to crush the onions and release their juices.  Pour the onion juice in a blender along with half a cup of apple cider vinegar and blend until well combined. Dip a cotton ball in the solution and apply it onto the age spots. For optimal results, do this once daily. You should notice improvement after two to four weeks.

“This remedy might not be an overnight fix, but it’s extremely effective,” says Drew.

Can you prevent them?

Although this recipe is said to work wonders, prevention is always better than the cure. So, the best way to deal with them is to prevent them from occurring in the first place.

Age spots are not only caused by sun exposure, according to Dr. Ray Peat, Ph.D. in an article for Harpers Bazaar. Excess iron, unsaturated fats, and hormone imbalance are also associated with the development of age spots.  Therefore, to prevent them remove polyunsaturated fats from your diet and get your iron levels checked.

Multiple Studies Confirm What Happens to Your Body When You Eat 1 Cup of Quinoa

Multiple Studies Confirm What Happens to Your Body When You Eat 1 Cup of Quinoa

Contrary to popular belief, quinoa is not grain but rather a highly nutritious veggie seed.  It is related to spinach and beets and it delivers an extremely rare veggie-sourced complete protein with all the nine essential amino acids.

Quinoa Health Benefits: from protein to anti-inflammatory

Rice and beans deliver all the nine essential amino acids only when eaten together. Most grains lack isoleucine and lysine, and need to be consumed with a legume in order to become complete. Quinoa, which has been long used in South America, is a low-fat, fiber-dense, high-protein, vitamin-, mineral-, and nutrient-packed seed.

Although quinoa is not a grain, it is often referred to as ‘the mother of all grains.’ It is considered sacred probably because it thrives during hot summer and drought conditions when other plants weaken. This protein-dense food is harvested before the winter when more protein and fats are needed.

It is worth noting that although it is considered a low-fat protein veggie seed, quinoa is higher in fat compared to wheat and other grasses. It contains notable amounts of oleic acid, a heart-healthy monounsaturated fat found in olive oil.  It also contains (ALA) alpha-linolenic acid, another heart-healthy fat.  Interestingly, these fats remain stable or don’t become oxidized during cooking, which typically happens with other fats.

It is believed that this is due to the high levels of antioxidants present in quinoa. It is packed with polyphenols, alpha, beta and gamma forms of vitamin A, and flavonoids that extend its shelf life and protect the seed from rancidity when cooked.

Besides being a high-protein veggie seed, quinoa is famed for its ability to regulate blood sugar levels, too.  Being a low-glycemic food, it puts little blood sugar stress on the body, while its fiber content promotes absorption of other sugars from the digestive tract in the bloodstream. In one study, it did better than ten other grains in regards to its effects on blood sugar and weight.

Interestingly enough, although quinoa kept healthy low blood sugar levels, it offered more fullness, satiety, and satisfaction after a meal compared to rice or wheat, according to the Satiating Efficiency Index (SEI).  Additionally, it contains solid amounts of magnesium, which promotes healthy blood pressure and blood sugar levels.

Anti-inflammatory and natural antioxidant which is packed with fiber, heart-healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, and a veggie ‘complete protein,’ quinoa must be considered as staple in the diet all year-round, particularly in fall and winter when the requirement for high-protein foods goes up.

Quinoa Cooking Instructions

  • Wash away the skin of the quinoa seed using a fine strainer. It is recommended to do your best to remove the skin as it is quite bitter.
  • Add two cups of water to a cup of quinoa and bring to a boil
  • Cover the pot, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for about fifteen minutes.
  • Strain the already cooked quinoa through a strainer
  • Put it back to a warm pot and let it sit without heat for additional fifteen minutes.
  • Adhering to these steps ensures that you get light and fluffy quinoa, not clumpy and wet one.
Fabric softener is the leading cause of indoor air pollution. Make your own with this DIY recipe

Fabric softener is the leading cause of indoor air pollution. Make your own with this DIY recipe

Fabric softener, which is inevitable part of every household, is typically associated with sweetness, freshness, and comfort.  However, most fabric softeners have darker side, containing a list of toxins which can enter the body through inhalation or topically. When they do so, they cause a wide plethora of health problems, especially for young children.

Here are some of the detrimental ingredients commonly found in sheet and liquid fabric softeners:

1. Chloroform

Chloroform has been widely used in the early 1800s as an anesthesia. However, in the 1900s the researchers discovered that it is capable of causing fatal cardiac arrhythmia. Being a well-known carcinogenic neurotoxin, chloroform is on the EPA`s Hazardous Waste list. Inhaling it might lead to nausea, headache, vomiting, dizziness, drowsiness, or loss of consciousness. Even worse, it is likely to worsen disorders of the heart, liver, or kidneys.

2. A-Terpineol

This substance causes central nervous system disorders, which means that it leads to problem associated the brain and spine, including dementia, ADD, Alzheimer`s, Parkinson`s ,  multiple sclerosis, sudden infant death syndrome, strokes, and seizures. Early symptoms of central nervous system disorders include hunger, blurred vision, memory loss, numbness in the face, pain in neck and spine, aphasia, headaches, and disorientation.  If it reaches the lungs, it might cause pneumonia, fatal edema, or respiratory depression.

3. Benzyl Alcohol

As a well-known upper respiratory tract irritant, it causes central nervous system disorders, vomiting, dizziness, headaches, and even dramatic drops in blood pressure levels.

4. Benzyl Acetate

This substance has been associated with pancreatic cancer. Inhaling its vapors can be irritating to both the respiratory passages and the eyes. In addition, it can be absorbed through the skin as well, causing even greater damage.

5. Ethanol

Ethanol is also on the EPA`s Hazardous Waste list and is associated with central nervous system disorders.

6. Pentane

A chemical known to be extremely detrimental if inhaled.

7. Ethyl Acetate

Yet another substance that is one the EPA`s Hazardous Waste list. It can be irritating to both the respiratory tract and the eyes, and is associated with loss of consciousness, severe headaches, and damage to the kidneys and liver.

8. Camphor

Another substance on the EPA’s Hazardous Waste list. It is extremely easily absorbed topically, casing irritation to the throat, nose, and the eyes. It may also cause twitching muscles, dizziness, confusion, convulsions, and nausea.

9. Linalool

Linalool is a well-known narcotic associated with CNS disorders and respiratory problems. Animal testing has shown that exposure to linalool can end up fatally.

10. Phthalates

Used in scented problems to extend the duration of their scent, phthalates have been associated with reproductive system problems and breast cancer.

11. Limonene

This well-known carcinogen can cause irritation to both eyes and skin.

The good news is that making your own fabric softener is a good way to avoid these chemicals and protect yourself.  It is super-easy and cost effective as well! For instance, vinegar is both nontoxic and cheap. It works great when it comes to removing soap residue and helping with static reduction during drying. It contains potassium and sodium, which are effective in softening hard water. When combined with a few other beneficial ingredients, it works as ideal substitute for store-bought and chemical-dense fabric softeners.

Natural  Homemade Fabric Softener

Ingredients

  • 1 gallon white vinegar
  • 30 drops of essential oil of choice

Instructions:

Mix the two ingredients together and pour into a storage container. Simple as that!

Use:

Dilute the solution with water prior using it in your laundry. For regular sizes loads, mix ¼ cup with ¾ cups of water. Pour your all-natural fabric softener into the washer as you would normally do with a store-bought one.

Home Remedies That Reduce Water Retention & Keep It That Way

Home Remedies That Reduce Water Retention & Keep It That Way

Losing water weight can be done in either the right or the wrong way. While most people unknowingly take the wrong route, this article focuses on how to do it properly and safely.  First and foremost, it is important to determine the reason why you are storing excess water.  Then, you should take the steps needed to fix the root cause of the problem.

1. Lose water weight tip #1: Cut Out Sodium

Most people who have excess water are likely to have too much sodium in their diet. Processed foods like those found in bags and boxes as well as fast food are typically packed with sodium.  Sprinkling salt onto your food can contribute to this problem, too.

Note that there is a huge difference between sodium and natural salt sources like Himalayan salt and sea salt. These salts are not the same as the table salt or the one used in cold cuts and processed foods. Eating less sodium means less sodium you have to excrete through proper hydration and sweating.

2. Lose Water Weight Tip #2: Increase Water Intake

As much counterintuitive is might seem, proper hydration is the key to losing excess water. Contrary to popular belief, dehydration is not a way to get rid of excess water weight.

Instead of drinking the recommended 8-10 glasses of water daily, take your body weight and drink half of the number in ounces of water a day. For instance, if you weigh 200 pounds, you will need 100 ounces of water.

3. Lose Water Weight Tip #3: Consume Natural Diuretics

There are many foods and beverages that induce more urination, which in turn helps clean the system of excess water.  Needless to say, there are far superior to drugs that offer the same effect.

The two aforementioned methods (eating less sodium and drinking enough water), are typically enough to normalize water weight.  Natural diuretics might be used in an effort to accelerate things or help in more serious instances.

In addition to this, eating fruits and veggies also gives enough diuretic effect to normalize water weight without any direct effort on your part.

4. Lose Water Weight Tip #4: Sweat It Off

Sweating is one of the best things you can do to get rid of excess water weight. Instead of trying to sweat it all at once, use the power of accumulated days.

Aim at building up a sweat on a daily basis. You will be more than surprised when you reap the additional benefits of losing excess water weight.

Sweating works by getting rid of the excess sodium you might be carrying in the body. At the same time, it helps remove all the nasty toxins and detrimental compounds from the system.

5. Parsley Tea

It has been scientifically shown that parsley is one of the best natural diuretics. It is packed with antibacterial and antioxidant properties as well.  It works by increasing the amount of urine excretion and helps remove excess sodium, which is known to retain water in the body.

In one study, rats were given water with parsley extract for 24 hours and then plain water for another 24 hours. When they drank parsley water, they urinate more compared to when they were given plain water.

Parsley Tea Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup water
  • A few tablespoons chopped parsley leaves

Instructions:

  • Put the parsley in a cup
  • Pour the boiled water over the parsley
  • Steep the tea for a few minutes
  • Strain and pour the tea in another cup