Category Archives: Must Reads

6 Expenses That May Be Destroying Your Budget

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6 Expenses That May Be Destroying Your Budget
by Adeniyi Ogunfowoke

Having a budget is very important if you want to properly plan your finance. However, when preparing the budget, there are some items or things that feature in it that you can do without. In line with this,

Here are some of the things in your budget you can do without. If you get rid of these items, you will be able to save more.

Cable television subscription
The homes you visit in Nigeria, you will find pay TV because it is now quite affordable. However, if you are cash strapped or you want to save some money, you should strike out pay TV subscriptions. In fact, you may discover that, except you own a generator, your subscription may run out without you enjoying it due to power shortage.



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Eating out.
If you reside in Lagos, you are most likely to eat out because you don’t have too much time on your hands. You may also consider the time you spend in traffic. So, eating out is one of the attractive options. But do you know that when you frequent one of the best hotels in Lagos to eat you will soon be cash strapped? Hence, try as much as possible to cook sometimes.

Gym memberships
You may not need to be a registered member of a gym if you planning to shed some weight. Not because you don’t have time, it is because there are other important things to do with cash. As an alternative, you may join your friends to jog every weekend.

You maybe interested also in “19 Secrets Your Millionaire Neighbor Won’t Tell You” Continue reading “6 Expenses That May Be Destroying Your Budget” »

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19 Secrets Your Millionaire Neighbor Won’t Tell You

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That’s right. Although having a million bucks isn’t as impressive as it once was, it’s still nothing to sneeze at.
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In fact, CNBC reports that in 2013 there were 13.2 million millionaires in the United States alone. That’s a lot of people, people. And the odds are one or two of them are living near you. Heck, one of them might even be your neighbor. In fact, the odds are very good that it is your neighbor. But, Len, you don’t know my neighbor. That guy doesn’t look anything like a millionaire. Well, guess what? Your suburban millionaire neighbor called (oh yeah, we go way back) and the two of us had a nice little chat. Here’s a few things he shared with me but apparently doesn’t want to tell you. (No offense, I’m sure.)




1. He always spends less than he earns. In fact his mantra is, over the long run, you’re better off if you strive to be anonymously rich rather than deceptively poor.

2. He knows that patience is a virtue. The odds are you won’t become a millionaire overnight. If you’re like him, your wealth will be accumulated gradually by diligently saving your money over multiple decades.

3. When you go to his modest three-bed two-bath house, you’re going to be drinking Folgers instead of Starbucks. And if you need a lift, well, you’re going to get a ride in his ten-year-old economy sedan. And if you think that makes him cheap, ask him if he cares. (He doesn’t.)

4. He pays off his credit cards in full every month. He’s smart enough to understand that if he can’t afford to pay cash for something, then he can’t afford it.

5. He realized early on that money does not buy happiness. If you’re looking for nirvana, you need to focus on attaining financial freedom.

6. He never forgets that financial freedom is a state of mind that comes from being debt free. Best of all, it can be attained regardless of your income level.

7. He knows that getting a second job not only increases the size of your bank account quicker but it also keeps you busy — and being busy makes it difficult to spend what you already have.

8. He understands that money is like a toddler; it is incapable of managing itself. After all, you can’t expect your money to grow and mature as it should without some form of credible money management.

9. He’s a big believer in paying yourself first. Paying yourself first is an essential tenet of personal finance and a great way to build your savings and instill financial discipline.




10. Although it’s possible to get rich if you spend your life making a living doing something you don’t enjoy, he wonders why you do. Life is too short.

11. He knows that failing to plan is the same as planning to fail. He also knows that the few millionaires that reached that milestone without a plan got there only because of dumb luck. It’s not enough to simply declare that you want to be financially free.

12. When it came time to set his savings goals, he wasn’t afraid to think big. Financial success demands that you have a vision that is significantly larger than you can currently deliver upon.

13. Over time, he found out that hard work can often help make up for a lot of financial mistakes — and you will make financial mistakes.

14. He realizes that stuff happens, that’s why you’re a fool if you don’t insure yourself against risk. Remember that the potential for bankruptcy is always just around the corner and can be triggered from multiple sources: the death of the family’s key bread winner, divorce, or disability that leads to a loss of work.

15. He understands that time is an ally of the young. He was fortunate enough to begin saving in his twenties so he could take maximum advantage of the power of compounding growth on his nest egg.

16. He knows that you can’t spend what you don’t see. You should use automatic paycheck deductions to build up your retirement and other savings accounts. As your salary increases you can painlessly increase the size of those deductions.

17. Even though he has a job that he loves, he doesn’t have to work anymore because everything he owns is paid for — and has been for years.

18. He’s not impressed that you drive an over-priced luxury car and live in a McMansion that’s two sizes too big for your family of four.
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19. After six months of asking, he finally quit waiting for you to return his pruning shears. He broke down and bought himself a new pair last month. There’s no hard feelings though; he can afford it.

So that’s it. Now you know what your millionaire neighbor won’t tell you.

Oh, and, um, would you be so kind to keep this just between you and me? I’d hate to ruffle anyone’s feathers or cause of any kind of neighborly spat.

READ MORE originally published by Time.com Len Penzo (copyrights)

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Pollution in Port Harcourt

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img_20161210_091514The rate at which air pollution is taking place in Port Harcourt is alarming, here is a Press Release from the Rivers State Government concerning this issue.



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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW WHEN DIRECTED BY THE POLICE TO WRITE A STATEMENT

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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW WHEN DIRECTED BY THE POLICE TO WRITE A STATEMENT




If the police ask you to write a statement, which they normally do when they stop you on the road and take you to their station or when they invite you to their station, you should know how to write a good statement that will not implicate you.  First, whether you write a statement as a witness or as a suspect, you must understand that your statement is very likely going to be used against you either in court or for the purpose of blackmail by some officers (not all). Therefore, take your statement writing as a serious matter.  Remember that you have right to refuse to write a statement until your lawyer is present. But this normally leads to argument and hostile reactions from the police, and it may likely be a pretext for them not releasing you immediately.



There are no hard and fast rules as to the content of a statement. It is supposed to be what you know in relation to an incident or the reason for you being brought to the station. Since the statement is not just a general view on anything you like, it is important that you know the reason for which you have been brought to the station.

For those who have been suspected of committing an offense, make sure that before you start writing a statement, you ask the officer the offense for which you have been brought to the station. If he tells you that there is no offense, that they just want you to tell them all you know, you can politely say: No, Sir. The police force is meant to enforce the criminal law. Therefore, the police would not have any justification to bring you to the station except if they suspect that an offense has been committed somewhere by somebody – either you or someone else. And you need to know the offense and the person suspected before you could write your statement.

Also, if you were arrested or invited as a result of a petition written against you, you must demand to read carefully that petition before you start giving your statement.  When you start your statement, make sure you explain in your statement the reason for which you have been asked to make your statement. For instance, you can say something like: “I was stopped while driving my vehicle with registration number xxxxx on ________ street in _______ city. After showing my papers to officer xxxxxxx, I was taken to the police station and informed that  my car was suspected of being stolen car” Then you make your statement. You will see that the police will not like this. But you should be able to state the summary of the circumstances that led to you having to make a statement in the station.  I will say more about writing statements at police stations. For now, just get the idea that you should explain why you are making a statement and the offenses you were told you were suspected of. You should state that in your statement before you begin to write other things.



POST SCRIPT: The reason you have to state in your statement the reason for making a statement is obvious. Your statement when read by a third party can only make sense in the context of the matter that prompted the statement. So, if you didn’t state the matter to which your statement relates, the police may change the matter down the line. Initially, you thought you were arrested because of stolen vehicle, but the police later charged it to kidnapping. If a judge is reading your statement in a kidnapping case, he will think you were evading the issues. He will think you were dodging the matter that you don’t want to answer the question. And he will form a negative opinion of you based on your presumably inconclusive and evasive statement . So be careful and be wise.

Emeka Ugwuoye

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Want a Flat Stomach? Stop Eating These 6 Foods

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1. Soft Drink
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Not only can drinking it regularly make you gain weight from all those extra calories, but carbonated drinks can cause excessive bloat — even those without calories can still cause gas to get trapped in you stomach. If you’re feeling bloated, drinking peppermint tea may help.




2. Alcohol

While studies show that regular, moderate consumption of 5 to 30 grams a day of an alcoholic beverage can reduce the risk of heart disease in men by 51%, it presents two problems: First, similar to sweets, it has a high caloric content with little nutritional benefit, and second, drinking one drink often leads to drinking more. Considering the fact that men are more likely to be binge drinkers, a single night out can mean consuming hundreds or even thousands of extra calories that you would normally not have consumed. It can also cause you to make bad eating choices, and those calories will add up and cause you to pack on extra padding around your middle. vodka-1515544_640

3. Refined carbohydrates




Pasta, bagels, cereal, and rice — dude, chill out on the carb-loading. If your choice carbs are made of white flours, start to weed those out of your diet because they get digested very quickly, causing a spike in your blood sugar and insulin levels. The Huffington Post notes that since insulin is known as a “fat storage hormone,” the more insulin circulating in your blood, the more likely your body will convert the carbs you eat into fat and will store them not just in your stomach, but everywhere else. Switch to whole-wheat flour, and instead of loading up on carbs, add more lean proteins like chicken breast or salmon.noodles-686858_640

4. Dairy

While dairy is a great source of calcium, if you’re looking for a flatter stomach, you may want to avoid it. You may be allergic and have a lactose intolerance that can cause gas and bloating when you consume anything containing dairy. If you suspect you may be lactose intolerant, pay a visit to your doctor. WebMD says that it can help to choose aged cheeses and yogurts, which are lower in lactose.

5. Processed food

Processed food tends to be very high in sodium and fat and subsequently low in fiber, which is why it’s so damn delicious and also why it causes bloating. Foods that contain a high amount of sodium, such as canned soups, frozen dinners, and condiments, can cause the body to retain more water, says Rosanna Lee, a nutrition educator and community health promoter based in Toronto, to the Huffington Post. She adds that, because our bodies are trying to balance out our electrolytes by diluting salt in our bodies, bloat often happens as a result. Dawn Jackson Blatner, RD, author of The Flexitarian Diet advises in WebMD to get in the habit of reading food labels and look for labels that specify low to no sodium. The Institute of Medicine recommends that you not consume more than 2,300 mg of sodium per day. hamburger-350090_640

READ MORE originally published by http://geonewsgraph.com/want-flat-stomach-stop-eating-6-foods/ (copyrights)

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Drinking Liquids with Meals: Good or Bad?

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Drinking Liquids with Meals: Good or Bad?

Some claim that drinking beverages with meals is bad for your digestion. Others say it can cause toxins to accumulate, leading to a variety of health issues. But can drinking a glass of water with your meals really have negative effects? Or is this just another myth?



The Basics of Healthy Digestion
To understand why water is thought to disturb digestion, it’s useful to first understand the normal digestive process. Digestion starts in your mouth, as soon as you start to chew your food. Chewing signals the salivary glands to start producing saliva, which contains enzymes that help you break down the food. Saliva also helps soften the food, preparing it for smooth travel down the esophagus and into the stomach.

digestion-diagramImage Source: Wikimedia.

Some claim that drinking beverages with meals is bad for your digestion. Others say it can cause toxins to accumulate, leading to a variety of health issues. But can drinking a glass of water with your meals really have negative effects?

Or is this just another myth?

Here is an evidence-based review of how liquids with meals affect your digestion and health. Once in your stomach, food gets mixed with acidic gastric juice, which further breaks it down and produces a thick liquid known as chyme. Chyme eventually moves towards the first part of the small intestine.

In the small intestine, chyme gets mixed with digestive enzymes from the pancreas and bile acid from the liver. These further break down the chyme, preparing each nutrient for absorption into the bloodstream.

Most nutrients are absorbed as the chyme travels through the small intestine. Only a small portion remains to be absorbed once it reaches the colon. Once in the bloodstream, nutrients are sent to different areas of the body. Digestion ends when the leftover materials are excreted from the colon through the rectum. Depending on what you eat, this whole digestion process can take anywhere from 24 to 72 hours (1).

Do Liquids Cause Digestive Problems?

There is no doubt about the benefits of drinking enough fluids each day. However, some claim that the timing matters, and that drinking them around meals is a bad idea. Below are the three most common arguments used to claim that liquids with meals are bad for your digestion. Alcohol and Acidic Drinks Negatively Affect Saliva



Some argue that drinking acidic or alcoholic drinks with meals dries up saliva, making it more difficult for the body to digest food.

This does have some truth to it.
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Alcohol decreases saliva flow by 10–15% per unit of alcohol. However, this mainly refers to hard liquor, not the low alcohol concentrations in beer and wine (2, 3, 4).

In regards to acidic drinks, they seem to actually increase the secretion of saliva (5).

Finally, there’s no scientific proof that either alcohol or acidic drinks, when consumed in moderation, negatively affect the digestion or absorption of nutrients.
Water, Stomach Acid and Digestive Enzymes

Many claim that drinking water with meals dilutes stomach acid and digestive enzymes, making it more difficult for the body to digest food. This claim, however, implies that your digestive system is unable to adapt its secretions to the consistency of a meal, which is false (6).

Liquids and Speed of Digestion

A third popular argument against drinking liquids with meals states that fluids increase the speed at which solid foods exit the stomach. This is thought to reduce the meal’s contact time with stomach acid and digestive enzymes, resulting in poorer digestion. As logical as this statement may sound, no scientific research supports it. A study that analyzed the stomach’s emptying speed observed that, although liquids do pass through the digestive system more quickly than solids, they have no effect on the solids’ digestion speed (7).

In Some Cases Liquids Can Improve Digestion

Liquids help break down large chunks of food, making it easier for them to slide down your esophagus and into the stomach. They also help move food matter along smoothly, preventing bloating and constipation. Furthermore, your stomach secretes water, along with gastric acid and digestive enzymes, during digestion.

In fact, this water is needed to promote the proper function of these enzymes.

Drinking water with meals can also help you pause between bites, giving you a moment to check in with your hunger and fullness signals. This can prevent overeating, and may even help you lose weight.

Additionally, one 12-week study showed that participants who drank 17 oz (500 ml) of water before each meal lost 4.4 lbs (2 kg) more than those who did not (8).

Research also shows that drinking water may speed up your metabolism by about 24 calories for every 8 oz (500 ml) you consume (9, 10).

Interestingly, the amount of calories burned decreased when the water was warmed to body temperature. This might be due to the fact that your body uses more energy bringing the cold water up to body temperature (9). http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14671205

However, observations on the effects of water on metabolism are not universal and the effects are minor at best (11, 12).

Finally, it’s important to note that this mostly applies to water and not drinks that contain calories. In one review study, total calorie intake was 8–15% higher when people drank sugary drinks, milk or juice with meals (13).

It Comes Down to Personal Choice

When it comes to drinking liquids with meals, base your decision on what feels best. If consuming liquids with meals is painful, leaves you feeling bloated or worsens your gastric reflux, stick to drinking liquids before or between meals. Otherwise, there’s no evidence that you should avoid drinking with meals.

On the contrary, beverages consumed right before or during meals can promote smooth digestion, lead to optimal hydration and leave you feeling fuller.

Just keep in mind that above all, water is best.

READ MORE originally appeared on  www.authoritynutrition.com By Alina Petre, MS, RD (copyrights)

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Krypton Steel; Reliability Made Easy

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Krypton Steel is the new kid on the block. They are experts in tilling and interlocking services, Industrial/domestic painting, electrical installations and maintenance, industrial and domestic plumbing. We are also provides leasing of scaffolds and Heavy duty machines. We have an efficient Real Estate department which provides services from the drawing board to house decorating.

Contact them for all electrical equipment installation and electrical equipment maintenance, you will be pleased that you did. They install, repair, maintain, modify, and interface machines from any manufacturer in the world. They also conducts electrical equipment installation, relocation, troubleshooting, and maintenance on a wide variety of machines and process equipment. We have the experience and resources to keep your plant up and running at its best.




Whether you need electrical equipment installation for a new line, to relocate a process line inside your plant or across the country, or to ensure good working order with electrical equipment maintenance, Krypton Steel will exceed your needs and expectations. nnnaThe plumbing in your home or at your industrial facility is one of the critical aspects of the building construction, and one of the most popular types of renovations undertaken. They are experts in the use of modern materials like copper, polyethylene and PVC plastic in plumbing installation and maintenance. Apart from toilet plumbing services we also involved in other services like kitchen plumbing, installation of new water services, pipe replacement and upsizing. We install indoor and outdoor drains, resolve your water pressure problems and replace faucets.

They are experienced for years in the following services, interior / Exterior Painting, Airless Spraying, High Reach Painting, Corrosion Control Coating, Exterior Metal Painting, Vinyl Wall Covering, Staining, Spray Stucco Coating, Silo and Tank Painting, Concrete Polishing, Surface Preparation, Acid Staining, Chemical Resistant Coating, Industrial Floor Cleaning, Anti-Graffiti Removal services.

Krypton Steel is the trusted company for the tilling and cleaning and sealing of interlock, pattern concrete, and natural stone driveways and walkways. Krypton Steel understands the importance of having a clean and aesthetically pleasing outdoor living area, lending to superior curb appeal. They have an efficient Real Estate department which provides services from the drawing board to house decorating. They will serve you best.

Contacts:

Krypton Steel
5 Otiko Avenue,
Elelenwo
Port Harcourt
09034663898, 08071225128

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6 Reasons Why Some Men Are Controlled By Their Girlfriends/Wives

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“Show me some respect, I’m the man!!”
“I’ll see between the two of us who’s the man!!”
And it goes on……..
When a man keeps saying these to his woman, then there’s a lacuna somewhere.
Where have some men lost it?
Being the head is never imposed, rather it’s attained.
When a woman is in the presence of a man whom she truly regards as a man, respect oozes out from every pore of her being.
(I’m a woman, so I know).
The respect flows without effort and pretence.
Women know when they are in control and when the man is in control.
(Yes, we’re that smart!)
There are various reasons why women control some men, and there are types of men that are “controllable.”
(May my man not read this article, AMEN!! )

1)WHEN A MAN LOVES BLINDLY
A woman’s control is usually subtle and more effective when a man is head over heals in love.
When love is misappropriated, a woman rules.
In this situation, a woman uses emotional manipulation to get whatever she wants.
Remember Delilah?

2)WHEN YOU CAN’T MAINTAIN YOUR WIFE.
This includes solving her needs.
And these needs varies according to individuals.
—Emotional
—Financial
—Sexual
—Protection
—Other provisions according to existing circumstances.
But when the reverse is the case, the man loses control, and respect.
You can’t expect the neck to do the work of a head and still maintain the characteristics of a neck!!!

3)WHEN YOUR WOMAN IS ABOVE YOU IN STATUS.
It’s always a problem if the woman is above a man intellectually, financially, socially, etc.
There will always be friction because they’ll operate on different wavelengths.
There are certain things the woman will do which the man may not understand.
And the woman will always adopt a patronising approach in dealing with the husband. Sometimes, the man may not know it.
Most men are intimidated by a woman of higher status, but when they get involved with them, their ego kicks in and when they try to suppress them, it boomerangs.




4)COWARDS
This type of man avoids confrontations.
He rather shies away and remains indifferent in the face obvious misdemeanours by his woman.
He would rather compromise than take a stand on issues.
This type of man is more liable to invite third party to play advocacy role in their misunderstanding.

5)INFERIORITY COMPLEX AND IDOLIZING
When a woman is higher than the man in everything and is an achiever, the man most times feels inferior to the woman.
Sometimes, this leads to the man idolizing the woman.
The woman can do no wrong.
He turns a blind eye to her vices.
Never gently rebukes or corrects her.
He inadvertently turns to her slave.

6)PREDICTABLE MEN
These are men who can be easily tricked, controlled and ruled.
Sometimes, some foolish women who are lucky to gain access into their man’s heart, capitalize on it to control the man.
A predictable man is like a T.V with channels.
The woman has the remote.
She knows which channel to tune to.
When to switch it on and off.
And funny enough, the T.V will always obey.

READ MORE originally appeared on facebook by Lawrencia Chioma.(copyrights) Twitter:@lawrencia47

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5 Effective Ways To Lose Weight With Zero Effort

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It isn’t easy to lose weight, especially when you try to make too many major lifestyle changes all at once. Here are five effective ways to lose weight that won’t leave you feeling stressed or burned out.

Include all five major food groups in your diet
Don’t hold yourself back from trying to lose weight just because you don’t want to cut out foods. There’s no rule that says you can’t embark on a weight loss journey without changing your entire diet on the spot.

When it comes to food, it’s a variety of food groups, and appropriate portions, that will reduce your calorie intake, not cutting out foods or eating more of one kind of food over another. Including grains, protein, fruits, vegetables and dairy in your diet means you will automatically consume more kinds of foods that have more nutritious value in them per serving, but fewer calories, such as vegetables.

Exercise a little bit, a few times per week
Intense, daily exercise isn’t necessary if you want to lose weight gradually. You might find it hard to get into an exercise routine if you go into it thinking you have to work out until your muscles ache, then wake up and do it all over again the next day.

The good news is, it doesn’t have to be that way. Reducing your calorie intake combined with exercising consistently is your key to seemingly effortless weight loss. The goal is to burn more calories than you’re putting in. If you can find a fitness activity you love, you’re one step closer to losing a few pounds. It’s better to give various activities a try until you find the ones you like doing than to avoid exercising altogether, especially when you want to lose weight.

Relax by doing something that doesn’t involve food
Relaxing even when you feel overwhelmed is part of a healthy lifestyle. Stress can lead to overeating and weight gain without you even realizing it’s happening. Weight loss doesn’t come easily, though, if your definition of relaxation involves mindless snacking while binge-watching FRIENDS on Netflix.

If you need some relaxation time in the evenings or over the weekend, do something that doesn’t involve food. Read a book or do a mindless activity that requires two hands, like folding laundry with a T.V. show playing in the background. Go for a walk around the block. Play with your cat or dog.

Make weight loss part of your life, not your whole life
Deciding to take steps toward losing weight is a big choice. You will probably start off fairly motivated and attentive to what your doctor and/or dietitian suggest, but the journey often branches off in two different directions not long after that. Either you’ll keep at it full force or slowly start falling back into old, less healthful habits. It’s hard to find the middle ground.

To lose weight without hitting either wall, don’t make it your only priority. Decide what things are most important to you – work? Family? Friends? Figure out how to incorporate weight loss into each of those key areas in your life. By focusing on being your most productive at work, for example, you’ll start thinking more about what kinds of food and snacks to pack that will keep you feeling at your best. Or you might decide walking up and down a few flights of stairs during your 10-minute break is something you’d rather do than stand around the coffee maker in the break room.

Eat what you want, when you want it
You may have been previously led to believe weight loss means you have to stop eating certain foods. In reality, depriving yourself of foods you like to eat makes weight loss basically impossible.

When you completely remove foods you enjoy from your diet, it’s much harder to introduce and experiment with new, sometimes healthier alternatives. There’s no need to stop eating one food, as long as you balance it out with another. You can still eat chocolate, as long as you make sure to have your fruits and veggies, too.

With small, gradual changes over time, weight loss isn’t just effortless: it’s possible. Try one new thing at a time and figure out what works for you. Losing weight is about improving your health and feeling better, and every person is different. You can, and will, make it happen!

Exercise a little bit, a few times per week
Intense, daily exercise isn’t necessary if you want to lose weight gradually. You might find it hard to get into an exercise routine if you go into it thinking you have to work out until your muscles ache, then wake up and do it all over again the next day.

The good news is, it doesn’t have to be that way. Reducing your calorie intake combined with exercising consistently is your key to seemingly effortless weight loss. The goal is to burn more calories than you’re putting in. If you can find a fitness activity you love, you’re one step closer to losing a few pounds. It’s better to give various activities a try until you find the ones you like doing than to avoid exercising altogether, especially when you want to lose weight.

Relax by doing something that doesn’t involve food
Relaxing even when you feel overwhelmed is part of a healthy lifestyle. Stress can lead to overeating and weight gain without you even realizing it’s happening. Weight loss doesn’t come easily, though, if your definition of relaxation involves mindless snacking while binge-watching FRIENDS on Netflix.

If you need some relaxation time in the evenings or over the weekend, do something that doesn’t involve food. Read a book or do a mindless activity that requires two hands, like folding laundry with a T.V. show playing in the background. Go for a walk around the block. Play with your cat or dog.

Make weight loss part of your life, not your whole life
Deciding to take steps toward losing weight is a big choice. You will probably start off fairly motivated and attentive to what your doctor and/or dietitian suggest, but the journey often branches off in two different directions not long after that. Either you’ll keep at it full force or slowly start falling back into old, less healthful habits. It’s hard to find the middle ground.

To lose weight without hitting either wall, don’t make it your only priority. Decide what things are most important to you – work? Family? Friends? Figure out how to incorporate weight loss into each of those key areas in your life. By focusing on being your most productive at work, for example, you’ll start thinking more about what kinds of food and snacks to pack that will keep you feeling at your best. Or you might decide walking up and down a few flights of stairs during your 10-minute break is something you’d rather do than stand around the coffee maker in the break room.

Eat what you want, when you want it
You may have been previously led to believe weight loss means you have to stop eating certain foods. In reality, depriving yourself of foods you like to eat makes weight loss basically impossible. When you completely remove foods you enjoy from your diet, it’s much harder to introduce and experiment with new, sometimes healthier alternatives. There’s no need to stop eating one food, as long as you balance it out with another. You can still eat chocolate, as long as you make sure to have your fruits and veggies, too.

With small, gradual changes over time, weight loss isn’t just effortless: it’s possible. Try one new thing at a time and figure out what works for you. Losing weight is about improving your health and feeling better, and every person is different. You can, and will, make it happen!
READ MORE originally appeared on  www.lifehack.org by Meg Dowell (copyrights)

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20 Things You Should Throw Away for Better Health

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“Replacing a bra whenever it no longer lends comfort and support will help reduce back pain in heavier women, and can slow the natural process of aging in breast tissue” Kristi Funk, MD

Old plastic containers
Go through your collection of food-storage containers and toss anything made of clear, rigid plastic, and stamped with a 7 or “pc” (stands for polycarbonate).

Old mascara
Liquid makeup, including mascara, can harbor a lot of germs, says Thomas Steinemann, MD, an American Academy of Ophthalmology spokesperson who practices in Ohio. That’s why he recommends throwing tubes away two to three months after opening. “Each time you use mascara, you are brushing it and any germs onto your lashes,” he says. “You’re also contaminating the brush with even more bacteria present on your skin or eyelashes, then plunging it into a moist room-temperature environment, which encourages bacterial growth.” One of the primary functions of eyelashes is to keep debris and germs from entering your eye, so it’s important to keep the makeup you put on them as germ-free as possible, he adds.



Stretched-out bras
When’s the last time you went bra shopping? The elastic in bras can get stretched out over time (the washing machine speeds up this process) which means less support for your girls. “Replacing a bra whenever it no longer lends comfort and support will help reduce back pain in heavier women, and can slow the natural process of aging in breast tissue,” says breast specialist Kristi Funk, MD. (That “natural process of aging” is sagging.)

Air fresheners
Though some companies have recently announced they’re phasing out phthalates, which are used to help fragrance linger longer, many air fresheners (solids, sprays, and plug-ins) still contain this type of chemical, which in large doses may have harmful effects on reproduction or development.

Antibacterial soap
Antibacterial soap is no more effective at killing bacteria than the regular stuff—and they may not be safe, according to a 2014 FDA report. Triclosan, the active ingredient in antibacterial cleansers, has been shown to alter hormone regulation in animals, and there’s also concern that the chemical may contribute to antibiotic resistance.

Frayed toothbrush
If you’re brushing in the morning and the evening like you’re supposed to, then your toothbrush bristles are probably becoming frayed and worn faster than you realize. “In my experience, bristles start to fray after about two months of use, so I recommend my patients replace their brushes every three months”

Clutter
“In the end, we are what we think about, and what we think about is heavily influenced by what we keep around us”
Not sure where to start? Toss things that annoy you every time you see them, like socks that have lost their match, or your overflowing kitchen junk drawer. No matter what you decide to throw out (or donate), your goal is to whittle the physical objects down to only items that help you feel energized and accomplish your goals.

Clothes you don’t wear anymore
Take a peek in your closet. How many items have you not worn within the last year? Many people who’ve lost weight keep the bigger sizes around in case they regain it, while others hold onto the size 2 jeans they wore in high school, thinking maybe if they diet they’ll fit again. In either case, seeing these items every day can bring on anxiety. That’s not how anyone wants to feel when getting ready.

Leftovers lingering in the fridge

“When it comes to highly perishable food that contains animal ingredients, the rule of thumb is to eat, toss, or freeze after three days,Listeria is linked to scary things like meningitis, miscarriages, and even death,” he says. “It can grow to millions at refrigerator temperatures in under a week” Michael P. Doyle, PhD

Your kitchen sponge

Studies show the kitchen sponge is the germiest thing in the average American household, says Tierno. While some experts recommend microwaving sponges daily to zap bacteria, Doyle recommends skipping them completely: “When you use a sponge to clean meat juices, which can contain harmful microbes like salmonella, and it stays moist at room temperature, they grow quickly and studies show even the dishwasher doesn’t kill them.” He advises using a washcloth to clean dishes instead, grabbing a clean one every few days, and throwing the dirty ones in with your laundry. “Because it’s thinner, a washcloth dries quicker than a sponge between washes, which helps significantly slow bacterial growth,” he explains.

READ MORE originally appeared on Time.com (copyrights)



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