10 Belly Fat Melting Tips That are Better Than A Tummy Tuck

10 Belly Fat Melting Tips That are Better Than A

Belly fat is hard to lose.  Many people choose surgery as a way to get rid of this stubborn fat. But tummy tucks aren’t safe for everyone. Fortunately, there’s are some healthier ways to get rid of your belly of fat. Here are ten belly melting tips that work better than a tummy tuck.

Why is belly fat harmful?

Studies show that women who carry excess fat around their middle are at risk of early death from heart disease and cancer. But why is it so hard to lose your stubborn belly fat?  Your abdominal fat cells are always busy producing hormones.

These hormones upset the natural hormonal balance of your body producing chemicals called cytokines. Cytokines raise your risk of heart disease. Your belly fat hormones change your body’s insulin levels and increase your blood pressure.

Belly fat, which is called visceral fat because of its location, is also linked to higher cholesterol. It raises your LDL, which is bad cholesterol and lowers your HDL, or your good cholesterol and makes you insulin resistant.  Being insulin resistant means your muscles and liver cells aren’t responding correctly to insulin. This causes your glucose levels to up, making you more at risk for diabetes.

Are tummy tucks safe?

Like any major surgery, tummy tucks do carry risk. Studies suggest that tummy tucks aren’t safe for people with heart, lung problems, cirrhosis of the liver, or diabetes.

Also, if you smoke, it’s not a good idea to get a tummy tuck because smoking reduces the proper blood flow in your stomach area. Tummy tucks have potential side effects. These include

  • Bleeding
  • Numbness
  • Infection
  • Ugly healing
  • Discoloration
  • Scars
  • Your skin gets loose again
  • Vein problems
  • Breathing or heart problems during surgery
  • Pain

Melt your belly fat

Finding an alternative to surgery is always safer and can be just as effective. Here are ten belly fat melting tips to get rid of your belly fat safely.

  1. Avoid sugary foods

Sugary foods like cookies, muffins, candy, frozen yogurts, flavored coffees, teas, and sugary sodas cause excess weight gain in your belly.  Sugar is composed of part glucose and part fructose. Studies suggest that glucose and fructose cause different effects on your health.

Many foods today have sugar or high-fructose corn syrup. The glucose and fructose in sugar and high fructose corn syrup are broken down differently in your liver. The high-fructose corn syrup causes a reduced breakdown of food in your liver, while glucose seems to protect it.

Scientists aren’t quite sure if sugar is safer than high-fructose corn syrup on your health, but they know that eating a diet high in fat and fructose has an adverse effect on your health. You may be surprised how many foods are made with high fructose corn syrup. This choice is primarily because high fructose corn syrup is less expensive.

Here is a shortlist of foods with high fructose corn syrup

  • Salad dressings
  • Bread
  • Ketchup
  • Frozen foods
  • Juice
  • Granola bars
  • Cereals
  • Crackers
  • Coffee creamer
  • Processed oatmeal
  • Deli meats
  • Peanut butter
  • Canned soups
  1. Reduce your calories

You can’t spot-reduce to lose your belly. But if you reduce your overall calorie intake daily, you will lose belly fat, too. Don’t starve yourself, but reduce carbs and try eating more protein-rich foods.  Eat more protein so you’ll feel fuller. Some people suggest if you cut 100 calories from your diet for 365 days, you’ll lose 10 pounds.

  1. Intermittent fasting

Studies have found that intermittent fasting improves your overall health. It helps reduce your chances of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and brain disorders. When you practice fasting, the main advantage is that it causes your body to change where it derives energy. You will get your energy from glucose stored in your liver. This affects your cells and organ functions by improving by overall glucose distribution and lowering your body’s stress and lowering inflammation. Fasting can help you slim down while your metabolism is working better.

One popular method of intermittent fasting is to fast for 14 to 16 hours a day, starting from the time you finish your meal at night until lunch the next day. You then eat for the next 8 to 10 hour period. During your fast, you can drink water, coffee, or seltzer water or anything without sugar. Of course, this fast isn’t an excuse to eat a bunch of junk foods or go way over your calorie intake. That won’t work, and you may gain weight. But doing an intermittent fast can boost your metabolism anywhere from 5 to 15%.

  1. Do HIIT exercises

HIIT training involves short bursts of aerobic exercise, usually lasting no longer than 20 to 90 seconds. You take short breaks in between the HIIT exercises, but your body is still burning calories. Over time, add extra seconds to your HIIT exercises.  HIIT revives up your metabolism to burn calories and belly fat.

  1. Stomach strengthening exercise

Of course, besides reducing calories, the best way to melt belly fat is to do exercise to work your stomach muscles. Crunches are a great go-to exercise for fat burning in the tummy area. Add oblique exercise to your crunches by doing this exercise.

  1.  These involve lying on your back, legs straight up, and crossed. With your hands behind your head, raise slowing, keeping your shoulders back, and your focus on the ceiling.
  2. When you raise, bend sideways to one side. Then lie back down. This is one.
  3. Repeat changing the sides you bend towards each time.  After you’ve done 25, switch your crossed legs, so the leg that was on the bottom is on top.

You’ll feel the burn in your stomach, thighs, and shoulders. In no time, you’ll have a flatter belly better than any tummy tuck.

  1. Up your fiber and protein

Fiber is plant parts that your body can’t digest completely. It moves through your stomach and small intestines then out of your body. There are two types of fiber: soluble and insoluble.

  • Soluble fiber is gel-like. It lowers your blood cholesterol and glucose levels. You get soluble fiber from plant-based foods like oats, oranges, carrots, apples, and barley.
  • Insoluble fiber moves digested foods through your body, so you have more regular bowel movements. It helps you avoid constipation. Whole wheat, nuts, green beans, potatoes, and cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower or broccoli have insoluble fiber.

One reputable study found that a diet high in fiber can boost your weight loss when you’re trying to lose weight. Besides eating a lot of fiber to lose belly fat, add healthy protein to your diet. Foods high in protein include the following:

  • Tofu
  • Beans
  • Lean meats like chicken and fish
  • Nuts
  • Peanut butter
  • Greek yogurt
  • Quinoa
  • Eggs
  1. Walking

Walking is a great way to slim down. It’s like a natural tummy tuck.  Fast walking, around 3 miles per hour, gives you a full-body workout, revs up your metabolism, and gets your heart pumping.  Walking has so many benefits and requires so little to get started. Here are just a few benefits of fast walking.

  • It’s free
  • You’ll not need equipment, except for a good pair of walking shoes
  • You can walk anywhere-while traveling for work, on vacation or around your block
  • You can enjoy walking with others

If you eat a healthy diet and walk for at least 30 minutes a day at a fast pace, you will lose weight and reduce inches in your hips, legs, waist, and belly.

  1. Maintain your weight

Maintaining your weight over a long period trims belly fat.  Studies found many factors that contribute to your weight control, including your environment, family history, genetics, metabolism, and health habits. You can’t control your genetics or family history, but you can energize your metabolism with exercise and eat a healthy diet. Once you’ve reached your ideal weight, it’s essential to maintain your weight. Here are some suggestions on how to do this.

  • Know what triggers unhealthy eating and find ways to offset them.
  • Stick to your exercise routine. Exercise will help you maintain weight and stay mentally sharp. The endorphins released when you exercise lifts your mood. You’ll also have more energy when you exercise.
  • Have a group of friends or family members who inspire you not to slip down into bad eating habits.
  • Be accountable to yourself. Keep an eating journal to gauge your eating habits. Don’t fool yourself into thinking eating that extra helping of pasta is okay.
  • Join a yoga class, jogging club, or another exercise group to stay inspired to live healthily.
  1. Eat healthy carbs

Choose whole-grain carbs, called complex carbs, instead of simple carbs, which are low in fiber like white rice or white flour products. Complex carbs help your gut function better. Complex carbs include:

  • Lentils
  • Quinoa
  • Beans-black, pinto, kidney
  • Onions
  • Oatmeal
  • Spinach
  • Whole wheat bread
  • Sweet potatoes
  1. Drink for a healthy belly

Reducing your alcohol intake to lower your belly fat. Also, avoid sugary juices or drinks that are high in caffeine. Instead, drink natural juices like celery juice, pineapple, or carrot juice. Choose mint or ginger teas hot or cold. Drinking green tea, the kind that is extracted, and a concentrate of catechins and caffeine may be helpful for weight loss. Plus, one study found that drinking as little as three teaspoons of vinegar every day helps you reduce your body weight.

Final Thoughts on Avoiding a Tummy Tuck with Healthy Lifestyle Upgrades

Before you go under the knife for a tummy tuck, consider natural alternatives that work just as well to reduce your belly fat. They’re safer, cost less, and you won’t experience adverse side effects.


Aging and Sleep: 11 Sleeping Tips for Older Adults

Aging and Sleep: 11 Sleeping Tips for Older Adults

Aging and Sleep: 11 Sleeping Tips for Older Adults

Failing to get a good night’s sleep can impact how we function during the day. It can impact our cognitive abilities and memory.

The sleep you need also changes over time. As a senior, this might mean that you go to bed much earlier than you did at a younger age but you also get up earlier too. 

Aging and sleep issues often go hand in hand. You may not need as much sleep as you once did, but seniors still need 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night to feel rested. 

If you’re a senior struggling to get a good night’s sleep, read on for a list of tips to help you get the sleep you need.

1. Consider Underlying Health Issues First

While it’s true that many seniors struggle with sleep issues, there are times when these issues are a secondary side effect of other health-related conditions.  

Some health problems that commonly cause sleep problems include:

  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease 
  • Lung or heart conditions
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Urinary issues from an enlarged prostate or overactive bladder
  • Depression or anxiety
  • Neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s

Also, take a close look at medications that might be creating side effects that are impacting sleep habits. 

2. Get Rid of Daytime Naps

Sure, we all love a good snooze in our chair late in the afternoon. Yet, these little cat naps can actually be preventing you from sleeping at night. 

Your body only needs so much sleep. When you take those naps during the day, you are making it harder for yourself to fall asleep later. 

If you feel yourself getting sleepy during the day, ask yourself if you have had enough water today. 

Instead of staying put when you feel sleepy, try getting up and moving around a bit. If you know you’re normally sleepy in the afternoons, plan to take a short walk then. 

If you must nap, try hard to limit your nap time to 20 minutes. This prevents you from getting into a deep sleep that will take away from your slumber time later.

3. Pay Attention to Your Diet

The diet of a senior can also impact their sleep. 

Caffeine, especially late in the day, can affect your ability to sleep later. Alcohol is another sleep busting culprit. While some believe alcohol might help them go to sleep, it actually disrupts sleep rhythms.

Watch sugar intake and remember that sugar is hidden in many foods like white bread and pasta. The higher levels of sugar in your body can interrupt your sleep later in the night. 

Likewise, a meal of spicy foods can cause indigestion that keeps you awake late at night. 

Do you wake up many times during the night needing to go to the bathroom? Try limiting your liquid intake for an hour or two before bed. 

Before bed try a light snack like a banana or yogurt and consider taking vitamins that help you sleep.

4. Get Daytime Exercise

When you exercise, your body will release chemicals. These chemicals help you get a restful night’s sleep later. You might be thinking, “I don’t get around well, how can I exercise?” 

There are many options for movement and exercise, even for those who have some mobility issues. 

Swimming and water aerobics are great aerobic exercises that don’t have the impact on your joints than some other exercises might. Take up golf or tennis to get moving. Even doing some daily gardening helps to get you moving. 

Can’t go for a three-mile walk anymore? That’s okay, you can still do several small walks each day. 

For those that want to stretch their muscles but have more limits, many seniors are enjoying chair yoga. 

5. Work on a Sleep Routine

When you have an infant, you teach them about how to go to sleep. With children, you also establish bedtime routines that help them prepare to go to sleep. 

As a senior, you need sleep routines too. When you have fewer commitments, it’s easy to get off on your schedule. 

To get the best sleep and to make sure your body knows when to sleep and when to wake up, you need to stick to a sleep routine. This means you go to bed at the same time each night. 

If you feel sleepy earlier than you used to, then adjust your bedtime. Going to bed at the same time each night helps your body know it’s time to sleep. 

Also, get up at the same time each morning. 

6. Create Bedtime Rituals

When we were little our parents would read us a story before bed. We got a kiss goodnight and maybe said our bedtime prayers. 

There’s a reason parents universally create these bedtime rituals with kids. It works to tell our brain and body it’s time to sleep. The same is true as a senior. 

Maybe you take a hot bath before bed. You could play some relaxing music.  Practice some deep breathing exercises to calm your body. 

Put on comfortable pajamas that make you relax. An hour before bed, try even having a decaf cup of tea or warm milk. 

7. Bedrooms for Sleep and Sex Only

You (and your brain) need to view your bedroom as the place where you sleep and have intimate interactions. 

So, often in today’s world, we move the TV into the bedroom. Pretty soon, you’re laying in bed watching TV late into the night, instead of sleeping. 

Avoid setting up a desk in your bedroom for hobbies or work-related activities. 

Think about your bed coverings. Do you wake up too hot in the night? You want your room to be cooler, so maybe think about a fan. It creates white noise and helps to keep you cool while you sleep.

Layer your bedding so it’s easy to push back some layers if you want to be cooler while you sleep.

8. Get Rid of Late Night Stimuli

Your brain needs time to shut down and get ready for sleep. It will help this to happen when you avoid overstimulation a few hours before bed. 

This means avoiding electronics if at all possible. Watching the blood pumping movie might be interesting but your body is then filled with adrenaline and not ready for sleep. 

Likewise, try to avoid using your electronic devices like a phone, iPad, or e-reader before bed. They all have blue light that can impact your brain and prevent it from settling down for sleep.

9. Address the Stress in Your Life

No matter your age, stress happens. When a person is feeling stressed and anxious, their brain works overtime, and falling asleep can feel impossible. 

When we worry or feel anxiety, our minds work overtime. So, you need to find a way to address the stressors you feel. 

Find a friend to talk through your worries with. Keep a journal. Sometimes just writing them down on paper helps work them out in your mind. 

Practice deep breathing and soft stretching to release some of the anxiety from your body.

When you go to bed feeling stressed, choose a happy memory to relive inside your head and focus on the memory instead of the worries.

10. Consider Snoring Issues

Whether you are the snorer or you sleep next to someone who snores, you know it can greatly impact restful sleep. 

If you are the snorer, talk to your doctor. The doctor can order a sleep study to evaluate your level of sleep apnea. C-pap machines help with breathing while snoring and can change the quality of your sleep.

Sometimes just finding the right pillow can change the angle of your head and help with snoring. 

11. Avoid Using Sleep Aids

If you’re not sleeping well and are feeling desperate for a good night’s sleep, it’s understandable to want to take a sleep aid.

A sleep aid, whether over the counter or prescription, can provide some temporary relief, it doesn’t address the issues related to insomnia. 

The pill might help you sleep one night, yet it is masking the reasons for your insomnia.  

Sure,  you might just want a decent night’s sleep. In the long run, you’re better off trying to figure out why you are having insomnia and address those issues instead of covering them up with a sleep aid.

Understanding the Impacts of Aging and Sleep

As we age our sleep patterns change and our sleep needs change. But just because you are aging doesn’t mean you don’t need a good night’s sleep. 

If you’re struggling with aging and sleep-related issues, try one or more of these tips to get you the good night’s sleep you deserve. 

For more interesting articles like this one, be sure to visit our page often.



Financial Planners Share 21 Money Saving Tips Never to Ignore

Financial Planners Share 21 Money Saving Tips Never to Ignore

Financial planners have different opinions about what you should do with your money, but there are essential money saving tips they all agree on. So, what do financial planners say are the best money saving tips you should never ignore?

21 Money Saving Tips Never to Ignore

1.Have some savings

One tip all financial planners agree on is that you should have a savings plan. They advise that you save a certain amount every month, at least five or ten percent of your salary. It’s best to have the money automatically deposited into your savings account from your paycheck. Experts recommend you save at least one month’s funds to cover an emergency.

2. Don’t spend everything you make

This advice seems simple enough, but if you are living paycheck to paycheck, it is challenging to do. If you have a small salary with debt, you must consider this as you make financial decisions. This time may not be right to purchase a car or eat out every evening.  Making wise choices on big or small purchases helps you live within your means.

3. Ask for a raise

If you need an increase to make ends meet at home, ask for it. You need to know what your job is worth in the marketplace. Think about your education, training, job experience, and what you’ve done for your company-all these things contribute to your overall job worth.

Get paid what you’re worth, being underpaid is money you need for bills, savings, and investments. You’ll never be able to get ahead if you are underpaid. If your current job can’t pay you what you’re worth, it may be time to find another job.

4. Pay down credit cards

If you have several credit cards, pay down the credit cards with the highest amount of interest first. Pay off the smallest amount required on your other credits cards to avoid a penalty. After paying off the high-interest credit card, close that one out using only the low-interest cards.

5. Have a budget

Another money savings tip recommended by all financial planners is to have a budget. It gives you a good understanding of where you’re spending your money. Figure out what your total income is after taxes. Choose what kind of budget plan you want to use to keep track of your expenses. You can use banking apps that automatically break down your spending or a spreadsheet to keep track of costs. Pick the plan that works best for you. Then decide what your costs are. The National Institutes of Health offers a list of money-saving tips for food budgeting.

Besides food, your budget includes

  • Other groceries
  • Rent
  • Household expenses
  • Insurance
  • Car
  • Child care
  • Entertainment
  • Perscriptions
  • Pet care
  • Parking
  • Clothing
  • Work wardrobe
  • Gifts
  • Banking fees
  • Loan payments/credit card payments
  • Travel
  • Gym memberships
  • Subscriptions

6. Prepare for retirement

Saving for retirement doesn’t seem important when you are just getting started, but it’s one money savings tips all financial planners suggest.  They say you should contribute something to your retirement savings, even if it’s a slight amount. Your employer may offer you a 401(K) retirement plan, and it’s a good idea to add to it.  Some plans match what you add with interest.  Saving for retirement is essential, and if you begin early, you’ll be nicely situated when you’re older.

Remember, too. Your overall expenses will go down once you hit retirement age. By the time you reach 65  or 70, your house mortgage will be paid off. Plus, your children will be out of the house, so you’ll be spending less on supporting their needs.

7. Pay down other debts

Most financial planners suggest you pay down your student loans and mortgage

slowly. Many mortgages have a penalty if you pay off the loan early. Also, this kind of debt isn’t as high in interest as other kinds of debt. And the interest on student loans and mortgages are tax-deductible. Use for money for other things, like investments or savings.

8. Keep your savings and check account separate

Your checking account has available money you need for your regular monthly expenses and bills. It’s the place where your paycheck will be automatically sent, minus monies you’re putting into your savings account.  A checking account gives you access to your money right when you need it.  A savings account should be left alone. Depending upon your bank, they will offer an interest rate on your savings.

9. Get rid of your subscriptions

Dump your subscriptions. They eat away at your income. It’s easy to forget if you have them. You often get one or two months free, and then the fees kick in. You may forget you have it.

10. Buy life insurance

If you’re young, you may not think you need life insurance. But if you have dependents or people who depend upon your financial contributions, then you need life insurance.

These people will become financially responsible after you die, so it’s a necessary part of your fiscal money-saving plan. This life insurance will be used to pay off debts after you die. Even if you’re young, buy life insurance since it’s cheaper when you’re young and healthy.

11. Review your budget every year

Every year, review your income, budget, savings, and debt. Life changes, you get a new job, or you have a baby, you realize these changes mean you need to adjust your budget or taxes since you now have a little tax exemption. Other things that affect your financial assessment include;

  • Rent changes
  • Health insurance premiums rise
  • The cost of living goes up-food, clothing, etc.
  • Inheritance
  • Auto-insurance goes up
  • Property taxes rise
  • Water or electric costs rise

Doing an annual review is like a health checkup.  You keep a pulse on how you’re doing financially and can adjust things if needed at this point rather than in a moment of panicked realization of some unexpected costs.

12. Write down all your expenses

This concept is simple enough, but many people don’t do it. Keeping a record of how you spend your money may be revealing. You may be shocked to find you’re spending lots of money on subscriptions or memberships you don’t even use.

13. Check your credit score

Your credit score is the number that shows lenders your borrowing practices. Knowing your credit score will help

  • Keep your loan interest rates lower when you borrow money
  • Helps you know your overall financial health
  • Make sure your score hasn’t been compromised
  • Determines if you can spend money on a house or car
  • You may not be able to rent an apartment if you have a bad credit score

Having a good credit score is like taking care of your body. Keep it healthy, and you’ll be able to do more things with fewer problems.

14. Use bank apps

Downloading your bank apps on our phone is excellent for keeping tabs on your spending habits. You’re more apt to check your phone since you carry it around. Plus, you’ll get notifications when your account gets hit, so it’s more secure, too.

15. Start saving for holiday costs in January

How many days till the holidays? The best time to save for the next holiday season is as soon as the season is over. Holiday gifts, parties, and travel all add up. When you save early, you won’t be hit with huge expenditures around the holidays.

Financial planners suggest you put aside $50 every month starting in January for your holiday fund. By the time you get to the holidays, you’ll be ready to pay for everything without going into debt.

16. Invest if possible

Most financial planners suggest you invest, even if it’s just a little bit of money. You could invest in

  • the stock market
  • real estate
  • Your employer’s retirement plan
  • 401(K)
  • mutual funds

17. Learn to say no

It’s easy to spend money because of others. If your extended family wants you to join in on a beach house rental for a week, it’s tough to tell them you can’t afford it. It’s hard to admit to your co-workers you can’t go out for drinks with them on Fridays. It takes strength to just say no, but it’s the best choice when you’re trying to get yourself financially stable.

18. Cut out things you don’t need

It’s easy to spend on unnecessary things. Whether it’s purchasing a large coffee every morning at a coffee shop or buying snacks at the snack machine every day, these things add up. Go over your daily, weekly, and monthly expenses. Stop spending money on these little habits. It’s a simple way to save money.

19. Save extra money

If you get a big tax refund, stow it away in your savings account as soon as possible. Things like a bonus at work, an inheritance are perfect for your savings. They weren’t part of your budget, so it’s money you didn’t expect to save.

20. Wait a day before buy

Financial planners would agree that giving yourself a good twenty-four hours before you make a purchase. This waiting period helps offset impulsive purchases. If you’re shopping online, see if you can put your items on a wish list, then go back a few days and see if you want to buy them.

21. Make a cash-only rule

Some financial planners suggest this money saving tip of spending only cash for a brief period. They recommend this so you can get control of your overspending. It’s an abrupt way to get your spending under control, but it might be worth a try.

Final Thoughts on Implementing These Money Saving Tips

These money saving tips will help you get your finances in order. With careful planning, you can lead a satisfying and secure financial life.


Essential Oil Diffuser Cleaning Tips to Never Overlook »

Essential Oil Diffuser Cleaning Tips to Never Overlook »

A wellness routine that fits into your life is of the essence. Be it simple workouts, hitting the gym, or jogging, the simpler the method, the better. And using an essential oil diffuser is an effortless way of bringing wellness into your living space.

Essential oils have been in use for centuries. Their complex blend of therapeutic benefits and aromas has also seen them play an indispensable role in modern life. Apart from making the room smell better, they have many uses in the food and cosmetic industries.

Research proves essential oils contain a mixture of molecules obtained from plant organs. Leaves and flowers contain the highest concentration of essential oils in a plant. If plants gain this much from essential oils, how much more do you stand to gain? Once you know all that, the next thing is to get the essential oils from the plant to the room, office, or car. So, how do you do that?

Think essential oil diffusers. Whether you use a nebulizer or an ultrasonic diffuser, the principle is constant. Diffusers break down the complex chains of hydrocarbons and oxygenated hydrocarbons of essential oils into small molecules. These molecules then disperse as tiny, breathable particles into your room.

Common types of essential oil diffusers

When it comes down to buying a diffuser, the kind of diffuser you buy will depend on:

  • Cost of the diffuser
  • Availability of the diffuser type
  • Size of your room
  • Dispersion capacity of the diffuser
  • Your tastes and preference

What to look for when buying an essential oil diffuser

1. Timer

A timer determines the frequency of releasing essential oils. Most diffusers have an interval of 1, 2, or 4 hours. The timer allows the diffuser to run for some minutes or continuously, depending on the type of diffuser.

2. Mist adjuster

An adjuster allows you to determine the number of essential oils you want to diffuse in your room. The button or knob should have an allowance of low, high, or medium setting.

3. Low noise level

A nebulizer diffuser produces a lower noise as compared to an ultrasonic diffuser. The noise comes from the release of the pressured air, which means that you will barely notice it.

4. Wide dispersion capacity

A diffuser should cover the entirety of a room.

5. Lightweight

Since it is an essential item, a diffuser should be cordless, rechargeable, and electric to allow you to carry it with you wherever you go easily.

6. Manufacturer guarantee

A warranty is a standard feature in many diffusers. It ensures that in the event of a malfunction, the manufacturer will repair your diffuser.

The above factors will largely determine the type of diffuser you opt for.

There are two main types of essential oil diffusers on the market right now:

  1. Nebulizer diffuser

When you want to buy a silent diffuser, uses no water, and do not produce heat but still look classy, consider acquiring this diffuser. It has no plastic parts, which means that it feels and looks expensive. Its usage is simple because it only requires you to pour pure essential oils into its reservoir. After that, it will work to disperse the essence and aroma of the oil.

It works in the following ways:

  • Air under high pressure forces a current through a small tube. The low pressure at the end of the tube reduces the speed and direction of the air.
  • The change in pressure, speed, and direction create a sucking force that causes essential oils to rise upwards.
  • As the oil is rising, the pressured air separates it into tiny particles.
  • The oil particles then rise and are emitted out of the glass container in the form of a dry mist.
  • The remaining particles drop back into the container, thus creating a cycle that only ends when the container is empty.

Nebulizing diffusers are low maintenance since they don’t require water or heat. They are a great choice for the environmentally conscious people.

2. Ultrasonic diffuser

This is also known as a humidifying diffuser. It works in the following ways:

  • Water dilutes the essential oils to enable the ultrasonic vibrations to work.
  • The diffuser generates tiny waves above the human hearing ability. These waves break up the essential oil into fine molecules. The fine particles then create a visible, aromatic mist.

Other than giving your room a fragrance, this diffuser also adds moisture to your room. This makes it a great choice, especially during the cold season. It is important to note, however, that this type of diffuser requires extra attention and care because its plastic parts are prone to corrosion by the oils.

Pro tips on cleaning your diffuser

After reaping the many benefits of owning a diffuser, it is now time for some maintenance. To continue reaping the endless benefits of essential oils, it is important that you take care of your diffuser. The following are some pro tips on how you can clean and maintain your diffuser.

Just like any other appliance that you use at home, diffusers are also prone to catching some dirt. To avoid dirt build-up, regular cleaning is mandatory. There are several methods you can use to clean your diffuser.

Before we review them, however, first things first:

Turn off and unplug the diffuser. As simple as that might sound, it should be the first step you take before you start cleaning your diffuser. This will help avoid accidents such as electrocution and possible damage to your diffuser.

Before commencing the cleaning exercise, it is important to read and understand the manufacturer’s instructions. This helps avoid common mistakes that could damage your diffuser. It is worth noting that each diffuser is manufactured differently.

  1. Deep cleaning

    • Fill your diffuser with clean water. The water should be preferably at room temperatures.
    • Add white vinegar. Experts recommend using approximately ten drops. Vinegar breaks down the essential oil particles.
    • Switch on your diffuser and let it run for a few minutes. This step allows any oils stuck on the diffuser to break down.
    • Flush out the water
    • Using a soft cloth, swab or brush, wipe the inside of the tank. Concentrate on the grunge that could be stuck to the sides of the tank.
    • Afterward, wipe the outer surface of your diffuser with a clean cloth.

    2. Wiping

    • Pour out the water in the diffuser. Experts recommend that you do this from the back to avoid damaging the buttons.
    • Pour a small amount of dishwashing soap on a piece of cloth or cotton swab.
    • Gently wipe the inside and outside of your diffuser.
    • Dab persistently on the grime to remove it effectively.
    • Use a clean damp cloth to rinse the soap residue. Do this by wiping the inside and outside of your diffuser gently. Repeat this step until there is no soap remaining on your diffuser.
    • Clean the ultrasonic chip inside the water tank. To do this, just take a clean cloth, dip it in rubbing alcohol, and gently wipe the chip to avoid damage.
    Get Glowing And Radiant Skin With These Fabulous Essential Oils

    Common mistakes to avoid when cleaning your essential oil diffuser

    • Avoid soggy clothes since they may get water under the buttons and lead to a malfunction.
    • Avoid using hard bristles because they may scratch surfaces and cause your diffuser to look old.
    • Clean your hands thoroughly before working on the diffuser to avoid getting more grime onto it
    • Do not let water and oil sit in the diffuser for long. This makes the diffuser harder to clean.
    • Avoid cleaning your diffuser while plugged in.
    • Do not use water that has been sitting in the diffuser to clean the diffuser.
    • Do not use harsh chemicals. These can harm your diffuser or leave a persistent smell that will affect the natural scent of your essential oil.
    • Do not use more soap than needed because it will make the cleaning process longer than necessary.

Final Thoughts on Maintaining a Clean Essential Oil Diffuser

Using essential oil diffusers comes with many benefits. Among them is the fact that they allow you to use our essential oils easily whenever you need to. With enough research backing the use of oils, all you will need is an oil diffuser to enjoy their full benefits. Essential oils promote better sleep, relieve pain, improve skin conditions, encourage digestion, and help you breathe better.

No better way exists of reaping these benefits than using a diffuser. It is affordable, portable, and convenient. Whichever type of diffuser you choose. However, it is necessary that you take good care of your diffuser in the same way it takes care of you.


6 Tips to Help You Avoid Being a Victim of Email Spoofing

6 Tips to Help You Avoid Being a Victim of

Forgery is one of the oldest white-collar crimes in history. In ancient times, rogue artists studied genuine signatures, manuscripts, and works of art to reproduce them. Then, they could sometimes pass these fakes as the real thing, often selling them for small fortunes.

Email Spoofing A New Forgery Style

Throughout the centuries, methods of forgery have changed, but the motives behind them haven’t altered. Internet crime, like email spoofing, affects everyone at one time or another. Email spoofing is a surprisingly simple way criminals use to forge email addresses for unethical reasons.

Some of the most notorious forgeries in history were discovered because someone was familiar enough with the genuine article. Likewise, it takes a careful eye to detect when someone is sending you a fake email. Just one small change in the address can create one that can easily fool people.

In most states and local governments, email spoofing, also called phishing, is illegal. Some unscrupulous people use e-spoofing to harass others or to make false claims against individuals or organizations. The most detrimental spoofs are those that extort money or personal information from unsuspecting recipients.

How to Email Spoofing

How can you tell if someone is spoofing you? Do you have enough Internet security to protect your private information? Consider these six tips to help prevent you from being the next email, spoof victim.

1. Carefully Examine the Sender’s Email Address

One of the best ways to fool you is to use familiar email addresses. For example, you might think you are receiving an email from a well-known legitimate business. However, the criminal makes a slight change in the address or domain that is easily overlooked.

Check out the sender’s email provider for signs of foul play. Would your life insurance company send you an official email by Outlook, Hotmail, or Gmail? Even if the cybercrook was smart enough to use .com, .org, or .net, these aren’t always proof of the email’s legitimacy.

Before you click on anything or disclose any personal information, scrutinize the sender’s address. You will often see one letter changed, added, or omitted. The letterhead and trademarks look real, but the address is fake.

To avoid getting phished in the future, be sure that your account is protected by a sender’s policy framework or SPF. This program helps to prevent cybercriminals from using your email address without your consent. It also minimizes spoofs that can come through your server to your inbox.

2. Examine the Subject of the Email

Even if the subject line seems legitimate, but you still have suspicions, do some prodding into it. If you use Gmail, go to the right corner of the email, click the three dots, called an ellipse. Scroll down the box and click on show original sender, which should match the entered sender address exactly.

For other email programs, find the return-path function to compare the addresses. You can also look up the sender’s IP address, which is the fingerprint of any computer or mobile device. Use your program’s IP lookup tool and compare it.

3. Trust Your Instincts

You’ve heard the saying that things that sound too good to be true usually are. Some spam that slides through your mail filters is such obvious scams that they are laughable. Others are a little more subtle with their deceptions.

The content of an email is often a tell-tale sign of a spoof. Why would the IRS send you a threatening email and then ask for your Social Security number and banking information? If you receive a debt collection notice from a company you have never owed, wouldn’t they already have your account information?

These heartless cybercriminals are hoping that you don’t recognize their scam and will offer any personal information they request. Adamantly protect your financial and personal information and never give them out to suspicious emailers. Remember that legitimate financial institutions and businesses will never request usernames, passwords, and other private information by email.

Another clue for detecting probable email spoofing is the graphics, grammar, and spelling. Many cybercrooks don’t have the equipment to forge official-looking letterheads and trademark graphics. The pixeled image may be distorted or faded.

As you scan through the content, notice if the grammar is awkward or incorrect. Non-English- speaking phishers often rely on rudimentary translation apps that are rarely precise, and you may see glaring misspellings. These unprofessional errors wouldn’t be found in a letter from a real company or organization.

Other phishing scams to beware of are those who are soliciting charitable donations. Often, these are fake organizations, or they are impersonating legitimate ones. One notorious scam involves email spoofs claiming that you have won a lottery fortune, and they need your banking information to deposit your winnings. Don’t click on anything or give out your private information.

4. They Misspell Your Name

They entered your email address correctly, but how did they spell your name? If this were an actual letter from your company or an organization with which you regularly correspond, wouldn’t they know how to spell your name correctly? An automatic red flag should go up if the email is vaguely addressed to whom it may concern or dear recipient.

5. Be Wary of Foreign Emails

If you receive a strange email from an individual you’ve never met, it’s almost sure to be an email spoof. At least one time or another, you’ve probably received an urgent email from someone supposedly living in a foreign country. As luck would have it, this fake foreigner has selected you to solve a personal crisis.

It’s a perennial phishing scam that uses different scenarios. The sender claims to have an unbelievably large check that is being held up in US customs. To get the funds released, he must have an American-side bank account. If you would send him your banking information, he will reward your kindness with a hefty sum of money.

Be assured that there is no check, and this isn’t a real person. If he gets your financial information, the only cash he is going to get is yours. Don’t be duped by these cunning cybercriminals.

6. Increase Your Email Security with a Difficult Name

Most people make their email addresses using their names, birthdays, or other relevant information. You are making it extremely easy on email hackers when you use your name as your address. When you use numbers, underscores, or numerical characters, then you are going to increase the chances that your email won’t be hacked.

Cybercriminals look for their next victim by their lack of internet security. For instance, if your email is [email protected], then it’s pretty easy to see that the recipient’s name, and determine that he was likely born in 1982. Using this information, the criminal can quickly compile up your data.

Do you know how easy it would be to get information about that specific person?

A simple internet search can give phone numbers, addresses, and even data about who lives in the household. So it’s easy to see that making the email address something more randomized, like [email protected] would make it much more challenging to get any valid data about this person.

Don’t make things easy for the intelligent internet criminals of today. When you put your personal information on social media outlets, then you are giving them all the ammunition they need to make you their next target. Be careful what email address you use and what you post on the internet.

Organize Your Email Account

Even when you are an individual and not a business, you’ll find your email flooded with junk from unknown senders. Depending on your email provider, most of this unwanted e-litter goes into a spam file to be deleted. Sometimes, you may be so overwhelmed and agitated with junk mail that you aren’t so careful to read the senders’ URL.

Study the help guide from your email provider and see how you can organize your account to recognize possible email spoofing better. You can also download free programs that allow you to keep your mail organized. These programs will also unsubscribe you to unwanted subscriptions automatically.

If you get a suspicious email, then you need to report it as spam through your email server. The only way to stop these attacks is to be proactive.

Final Thoughts on Being Cyber Safe to Avoid Email Spoofing

The internet has brought about many opportunities for people to work from home, stay connected to people across the globe with ease, and to have the power of information at the touch of a button. However, with all the good things that the world wide web has done for society, there are also some downfalls.

Hacking your email and other accounts have become quite easy, primarily when you feed information to hackers unknowingly. Thankfully, there are ways that you can be proactive and stop or reduce the threat to your email and other aspects of your life. Do you have the protection you need against email spoofing?


12 Tips to Help You Accept Compliments Gracefully

12 Tips to Help You Accept Compliments Gracefully

You’d be surprised at how many people don’t know how to accept compliments gracefully. If you thought you were the only one, don’t feel bad. You are not alone.

It seems to be hard for people to just accept a compliment. The reactions and responses that are given are often awkward, surprising, hilarious, or even rude. The wrong answer happens so often that there should be a workshop on how to accept praise from others.

There may not be a workshop available, but we have some fantastic tips to help you work on your compliment-accepting etiquette. Here are 12 tips that will make you better at accepting praise gracefully.

12 Tips to Help You Feel More Comfortable When You Accept Compliments


1. Acknowledge the Person Giving the Compliment

One of the worst things you can do when someone compliments you is ignoring them. Ignoring a person that complimented you is cold and rude. People will quickly stop liking you. No one is saying you must have an extended conversation with the person, but even a small acknowledgment of their compliment is the right thing to do.

The first step to accept compliments gracefully is acknowledgment. Without it, none of the other steps in the list matter. So, when someone gives you a tribute, don’t just walk by like you don’t hear them or see them.

2. Say “Thank You”

The absolute best way to accept compliments gracefully is simply to say, “thank you.” That’s it – nothing more. Sometimes it can feel awkward to say only those two words. You may be left wondering what to do next. Should you return the favor? Keep the kind words going? Don’t worry – just act naturally, as you would if they hadn’t complimented you.

Simply smile and be humble about receiving the compliment. The person who gave you the praise isn’t expecting anything in return from you. Thank you are two powerful words.

3. Watch Your Body Language

Your mouth can say one thing, but your body could mean something different. You don’t want to send mixed messages when you’re receiving a kind word. The person complimenting you might feel as if they’ve offended you. Even worse, you don’t want them to think you’re smug.

The best body language in this situation is the approachable body language. Have good eye contact and a slight smile (to show that you like the compliment). Also, try to keep yourself “open” to the person. Don’t cross your legs or arms, and don’t try to “hide.”

body language

4. Be Humble

When someone pays you a compliment, you should be appreciative that they took the time from their day to notice something beautiful about you. The way you respond is everything – you don’t want to come off as some stuck-up person who thinks they’re better than everyone else. This advice might sound a bit extreme, but that’s how people will feel about you if you can’t humbly accept a compliment.

To be humble, don’t respond with comments like, “of course I look great,” or, “what do you expect? These are designer shoes.” While this may be true, you still shouldn’t say it. If you make comments like these jokingly, that might be okay, but you again must watch your tone of voice to avoid coming off as stuck-up.

5. Be Genuine

You could do the three tips above, plus the rest of them in this list, but if you’re being fake, people will spot that from a mile away. Even if you think you’re the best liar in the world, sometimes people will still see right through you. There is no need to be disingenuous when someone compliments unless you don’t like compliments. However, like every other human on the planet, of course, you like them.

When someone is kind to you, you should genuinely appreciate that. After all, they didn’t have to spend a minute or two of their time on you, but they found it essential to do something to brighten your day.

6. Don’t Let Pride Take Over

There is nothing wrong with having pride in your accomplishments, but when someone gives you a compliment about them, don’t be so prideful that your response comes off as rude or arrogant. Sometimes people do this, and it’s not even on purpose. They may not realize the type of response they’re giving because their pride is blinding them.

Take pride in your accomplishments, but when someone compliments you, push your satisfaction back just a little bit so you can be more down to earth. Remember, even if only briefly, that you’re not better than anyone else. This humbling approach will help you accept a compliment gracefully.

7. Repay the Compliment

Repaying the compliment is a great way to accept compliments gracefully. Just as their praise made you feel good, yours can make the person feel good also. As long as it’s done in good taste, everyone walks away from the situation feeling like a winner.

Keep in mind that you need to keep the compliment genuine and straightforward. Don’t overdo it, or it will seem like you’re merely trying to outdo their tribute. For example, if someone says they like your shoes, you could respond with, “thanks! I like yours too!” However, only give honest compliments! If you don’t like their shoes, choose something else.

8. Don’t Be Overly Excited

A compliment is a small gesture of kindness and acknowledgment. That means it doesn’t warrant an over-the-top reaction. Besides thinking you’re a bit bizarre, you’ll make people think you are disingenuous. While you may merely be trying to show your appreciation, your over-the-top reaction can make people feel uncomfortable.

So how do you know when your reaction is just too much? Most compliments are done so in a “conversational” manner. Therefore, if your response is out of the bounds of a normal conversation, you’ve probably done too much. This point leads to the next tip on the list.

Here are ten red flags that show someone feels entitled.

9. Match Their Level of Enthusiasm

This bulletpoint expands upon the last tip. If you overreact, people are going to think you’re just a bit off. However, if you under-react, that can leave them feeling a bit confused. They could believe that you misunderstood their compliment or that they may have unintentionally said something wrong. Either way, under-reacting is not a way to accept compliments gracefully.

Instead, try to match their enthusiasm. This includes their tone, volume, and rate of speech. This doesn’t mean you have to fake it or analyze the compliment before responding. Just match their energy. If you allow it to flow naturally, it’s not hard to match energy levels.

10. Don’t Toast Your Toast

There is a right way and a wrong way to receive a toast. Many people aren’t aware of this, and they don’t mean any harm when they receive their toast the wrong way. However, it’s very ungraceful to toast to yourself. In other words, if the toast is to you when everyone else raises a glass and drinks from it, your glass should remain firmly on the table.

Drinking to your toast is like complimenting yourself and patting yourself on the back for the compliment. Instead, smile, nod, and accept the toast. Drink after your toast is over. Even better – return the compliment by toasting someone else.

11. Don’t Attack the Compliment

Sometimes insecurities can cause you to question a compliment, but attacking compliments is not a way to accept compliments gracefully. When people give compliments, it’s coming from their hearts. Attacking the compliment is equivalent to discrediting their judgment. Even worse, it can come off as condescending.

Say, for example, your coworker says, “you nailed that presentation!” You then respond by saying, “if you thought that was good, you must not have seen very many presentations.” While you didn’t intend to cause harm, this can make the person feel like you’re saying they’re not qualified to compliment you. Avoid this by only accepting the compliment.

12. Don’t Go Fishing

You may have heard the saying “fishing for compliments”. This habit isn’t a good thing. When someone compliments you, just take it. Don’t try to stretch it out or pull more out of the person. If they tell you that your dress looks nice, don’t ask them what they like the best about it. That just makes the conversation awkward and makes you look self-centered. Simply accept the compliment, then change the conversation or move on.

complimentsFinal Thoughts on How to Accept Compliments Gracefully

Most of the time, when people respond wrong to a compliment, they don’t mean any harm. They simply don’t know how to accept the compliment. Some people may even be slightly embarrassed by a compliment. However, with practice, you can get good at taking them.

The 12 tips above are great starting points in accepting praise gracefully. You don’t have to do them all. Start with a few and keep trying them until you find the ones that work best for you. Before you know it, you probably be able to accept compliments more gracefully than you’d ever imagined!


10 Tips to Help You Avoid Germs While Grocery Shopping

10 Tips to Help You Avoid Germs While Grocery Shopping

Germs are all around you, and there’s really no way for you to totally avoid them. While encountering bacteria in small doses is vital to help you develop immunities, you want to avoid the toxic varieties that can make you sick. So the big question is, how does someone running errands and coming in contact with tons of people while grocery shopping avoid getting sick?

10 Tips for Dodging Germs at the Grocery Store

The grocery store is one place that you must visit each week or so. Even if you utilize the pickup services, there are always things you forget and need to grab on the go. How can you protect yourself when you’re in the supermarket?

If you listen to the news, you might be confused as to what to do as it seems each expert has a different opinion on what works and what doesn’t. You must use common sense when it comes to your health and not overdo it on germ protection. One expert will tell you to do specific things while another will say that these things aren’t helping you.

Anything you do to bring awareness and protect yourself is beneficial. Here is a list of 10 tips that can help you to stay safe while shopping for groceries.

grocery shopping and germs

1. Sanitize Your Cart

When you first enter the store, you will see that shopping centers are usually crowded, especially if you go to the big box supercenters. Sanitizing your cart has become essential. As of March of 2020, most supermarkets are sanitizing carts for you, but you can’t be too careful.

Thankfully, most centers have installed hand sanitizer and wipe stations for you to clean your cart. Think of all the people that come and go in these stores each day. A study was conducted in South Carolina at a Piggly Wiggly supermarket to examine the level of germs on the shopping carts.

They tested a select number of buggies, which some had been wiped down before opening, and some had not been wiped at all. The results at the close of business were frightening. The carts had fecal matter, e coli, ringworm, and the virus that causes strep throat on them.

The carts that had been wiped down fared better, but they were still toxic. The study proves that it’s best to clean your cart to provide some protection.

2. Wear a Mask

It’s easy to see how running errands can be dangerous to your health based on the information obtained from the shopping cart study. Some people hate wearing masks because they feel as if they are suffocating and their glasses fog up.

However, wearing that mask could prevent an infection. Now, any old cover won’t do. You can’t put a piece of cloth up to your face and think you’re protecting yourself. Do a couple of tests to see how strong your mask’s protection power.

First, can you smell anything through it? If your mask is thin enough to smell stuff through it, then it’s not going to protect you. Second, can you see the light through it when you hold it up? Again, it’s not going to protect you if the material is very thin.

You need a mask with a filter. The best to use is the N95 varieties that have breathing gills on the side. These allow you to breathe clean air and not inhale CO2.

4. Don’t Touch What You Don’t Plan to Take

Avoid the temptation to casually browse products that you don’t need or intend to purchase. Manufacturers lure you with tempting and colorful packaging that draws your eye. However, you should avoid touching items that aren’t on your grocery shopping list.

The fewer things you touch, the fewer germs you will pick up on your hands.

5. Stay Six Feet Away

Six feet is the magic number to keep you safe from airborne germs. The Center for Disease Controls says that you must stay about two arm’s lengths from anyone else in the store. If a person doesn’t cover their nose or mouth when they sneeze or cough, this is the appropriate distance to stay protected.

Even if a person does cover their face during an eruption, it still sends microscopic particles into the air. One breath of these germs is all it takes to make you sick. When you’re six feet away, those particles cannot travel that far, so the chances of you becoming sick diminish.

grocery shopping

6. Do Your Shopping During Slow Times

Grocery shopping can be a nightmare if you go during peak times. You want to shop early or late, but never in the afternoon or after work. You get the best selection when you do your grocery shopping early, and you get the least crowd when you shop late.

You want to strive to have fewer people inside the building when you shop. The fewer people that you encounter, the lower your risk of contracting anything toxic.

7. Leave the Kids at Home

In peak seasons when the flu and other viruses are running rampant, it’s essential to leave the kids at home. Children like to touch everything they can get their hands on, and then put their hands into their mouth. When they put these germs into their mouth, they become infected.

Now the beautiful thing about kids is that they have strong immune systems. They can be a carrier for a virus and never get sick themselves. So they can bring the flu home to you, yet it won’t phase them one bit. Unless it’s necessary, leave the kids at home when grocery shopping.

8. Carry Hand Sanitizer

Did you know that the germiest areas you will encounter while grocery shopping is the meat counter, the produce section, and the pin pad for credit card transactions? While it’s not possible to run to the restroom and wash your hands after you touch each little thing, keep a bottle of sanitizer on you.

All it takes is to scratch your eye, touch your nose or mouth, and you will transfer bacteria. Think of all the people that don’t wash their hands after they use the restroom. These people are spreading fecal matter and other bacteria around, and it can easily make its way into your mouth.

9. Wash Your Hands

After your shopping trip, you need to make sure you get rid of the germs you’ve picked up. Before you touch the steering wheel in your car, take a wet wipe loaded with a disinfectant and wash your hands and anything you’ve touched. If you transfer any bacteria to your steering wheel, it will infect anyone that encounters it.

As soon as you get home, wash your hands with an warm water and soap up to the elbow area. Make sure that you wash for at least 20 seconds and get a good lather going. Proper handwashing hygiene should be standard, but you should increase it during times of flu and other virus outbreaks.

antibacterial soap

10. Pay Attention to What You Put in Your Cart

As important as all the things you do to keep yourself safe from germs, it’s also important what you put inside your cart while grocery shopping. You can help build your immunity to fight off disease and infection by only eating healthy.

Did you know that garlic is a natural antibiotic that is known for its healing properties? It can help to boost your immune system. Lemons are another thing that should be on every household’s shopping list. These little citrus cuties are full of Vitamin C and can help to ward off colds and the flu.

Other immune-boosting foods to consider include the following tasty:

  • Oranges and citrus fruits
  • Blueberries
  • Fatty fish
  • Eggs
  • Avocado
  • Fresh leafy greens (kale, spinach, leaf lettuce)
  • Nuts (because you need healthy snacks!)

Stock your pantry with organic, whole foods to amplify your body’s immune response to bacteria and viruses.

And remember that while you’re worrying about masks, gloves, and hand sanitizer, don’t forget that a healthy diet can do more for your immunity than any of these things every can.


Final Thoughts on Avoiding Germs in a Germ Filled Grocery Store

You can’t lock yourself in a bubble just because there are germs all around you. The body is designed to build immunity to bacteria and diseases by being exposed to small doses. This exposure is how your body can develop a quicker immunity.

Nature is healing. There are healing powers in fruits, vegetables, herbs, and things provided by Mother Earth. When you learn to eat right, you can effortlessly build your immunity to protect you from something you encounter.

When all else fails, you always have the backup methods of masks, hand sanitizer, and other little steps you take to avoid encountering bacteria. The trick is to be wise, be safe, and above all else, be kind. It’s a tough time and being tolerant and kind to one another is essential during these periods.


7 Tips on Improving Cybersecurity for Small Businesses

7 Tips on Improving Cybersecurity for Small Businesses

7 Tips on Improving Cybersecurity for Small Businesses

Did you know that 43 percent of all cybersecurity attacks target small businesses?

This is a staggering percentage, and to think your business could be targeted should be worrying. It could be anything from web-based attacks, phishing or malicious botnets and codes and improving cybersecurity should be a priority.

What’s more surprising is that over 70% of organizations don’t have cybersecurity response plans in place, making them vulnerable to more attacks. If there’s one thing you should know, cybercrime is one of the biggest threats your business could be facing, and you need to be prepared.

Better yet, why not protect yourself?

Why Would a Small Business Need Cyber Security?

Some small business owners feel that since they’re running a small business, hackers and cybercriminals will have no business targeting them. There’s not much to steal, right? There are plenty of large businesses out there worth spending their time on, right?

Well, the thing is, small businesses are attacked more often than large ones, and criminals obtain personal information for identity theft. The reason why criminals target small businesses is that most of them are vulnerable, making the work easier for them.

They could hack multiple small businesses and steal more files instead of targeting a secure large business. Let’s take a look at some of the strategies you can use to avoid being a victim.

You can easily do this by improving cybersecurity in your small business and safeguarding yourself. So how do you do this? 

1. Implement a Robust Firewall

The first line of defense you need for cyber-attack is a firewall. A firewall is the one thing standing between your sensitive data and information and cybercriminals, and the outside world. Unauthorized individuals will have no access to your network.

A standard external firewall is recommended, but you can go the extra mile and install an internal firewall as well just to be safe. It’s imperative for your employees working from home to use the firewall as well.

2. Create and Enforce Password Practices

Who likes changing passwords? No one. However, you can’t underestimate how important strong passwords are. Strong and unique passwords should be used for all your systems.

Implement stringent password policies for all your employees and teach them how to create strong passwords. Consider using a password manager and ensure all passwords are changed after a maximum of 90 days. Explain why your policies are vitally important and enforce the policies through the right group policy settings.

3. Improve Security With Two-Factor Authentication

Technology is advancing so fast, and cybercriminals are getting clever by the day, so sometimes, passwords are just not enough. Once you input your username and passwords, you have an extra step to verify yourself. This is a piece of information that only you would know, such as a one-time code sent to you via text on the phone number attached to your account.

There is no way a hacker would get such a message, and it would be harder for them to bypass. This is one of the best ways of improving cybersecurity for your small business. Ensure that it covers all devices that login to your office, from smartphones to tablets and laptops, ensuring they are secure in case they’re stolen.

4. Train Employees on Data Breach Prevention

Most security breaches are attributed to human error, not the IT department. One of the easiest ways for cybercriminals to infiltrate a network is by preying on employees that don’t recognize or understand the risks involved. Whether they go through email attachments, malware, or document downloads, an easy phishing attempt could lead to your downfall.

To prevent this from happening, teaching your employees how to avoid these mistakes is vital. There needs to be a tech protocol in the employee handbook covering all the steps involved in protecting your data and, ultimately, your business.

5. Store Customer Data in an Encrypted Database

Improving cybersecurity involves storing customer data in an encrypted database, and for very good reasons. All information containing customer information or trade secrets should be encrypted. Encryption converts information into code, preventing unauthorized access.

6. Perform Regular Vulnerability Checks

Regular vulnerability checks are essential because you’ll minimize risks and prevent breaches. You’ll also know if there has been a breach without your notice. A study found that, on average, it takes over 200 days for a company to detect a data breach, a time in which they lose thousands, if not millions of dollars, and sensitive information.

Conduct regular firewall configurations for penetration testing, software updates, and employee training to ensure they stay vigilant at all times.

You can hire an IT company to conduct these checks. What’s more, such a company will offer other technology services that suit your business. You can visit to learn more. 

Beyond that, you should complete data backups on hard drives or the cloud on a regular basis.

7. Have a Cyber Security Disaster Plan Ready

If there’s one thing you need to understand about improving cybersecurity, is that it’s an ongoing process. In the event of a data breach, you should have a disaster plan ready. If the breach could result in identity theft or cause harm, you should inform all your vendors and customers affected.

Bonus Point: Implement Web and Spam Filters

Phishing is the most common small business cybersecurity threats, and implementing web and spam filters is a great way to prevent it. Web filters prevent employees from visiting phishing websites or websites that may contain malware, preventing or minimizing the chances of a web-based attack.

Emails are also an easy gateway for cybercriminals. Having a spam filter will block malicious spam emails, which will prevent any phishing emails from reaching any inbox.

Improving Cybersecurity for Your Small Business

These tips will help in improving cybersecurity for your small business. Even though there’s still a chance of a breach, protection is always better. Having a plan will also go a long way in containing the situation.

Kindly check out our other insightful posts!


21 Tips You Must Know To Live Frugally

21 Tips You Must Know To Live Frugally

The importance of living frugally is a major concern in every household. Even if you make a comfortable living, saving for the future is wise. Popular books, magazines, and websites admire the benefits of thriftiness.

Have you ever read cookbooks or watched shows hosted by the late Jeff Smith, The Frugal Gourmet? Smith was quick to emphasize that being frugal does not mean cheap. It involves stretching your dollars to buy the best quality your budget allows.

If you imagine being thrifty makes you one of the extreme examples from a popular reality show about cheapskates, you needn’t be. You can manage your spending habits wisely while still enjoying an abundant life. How is that possible?

With careful planning, research, and reevaluating your priorities, frugal living is possible for your family or anyone else. Along the way, you may meet others who have success with thriftiness and will share pointers with you. Here are twenty-one tips that give you some helpful suggestions.

21 Actionable Tips to Live Frugally

live frugally

1. Establish a Household Budget

No doubt you have worked from a budget for years. Has it helped you pay bills while providing money for savings? If not, consider revising your budget to reflect what you earn and how you can eliminate unnecessary items.

2. Keep a Spending Journal

It’s easy to whip out cash or card all day and not realize how much you are spending. If you keep a journal, you may be shocked at how these little changes add up. Even more sobering is that many of these could be impulse buys you don’t need.

3. Reevaluate Your Family’s Spending Priorities

Some bills, like mortgage/rent, transportation, utilities, and other basic needs, are inevitable. However, you have some financial wiggle room to monitor these needs closely. Study your spending journal and see where you can eliminate frivolous items or reduce the cost.

4. Reduce or Eliminate Your Debt

Did you know that most Americans are seriously in debt? Has society’s mandate to “keep up with the Jones family” kept your bank accounts in the red? Unfortunately, interest and late charges can compound and leave you destitute for years.

If you are struggling with debt, seek a qualified debt counselor to learn how you can reduce, and eventually eliminate it. Your counselor can advise you on how to pay off high-interest credit cards and loans, usually without resorting to bankruptcy. With a clean slate, you can better manage your money and avoid the pitfalls of debt.

5. Shop Smart with Coupons

When you pitch those store circulars and coupon packs from the Sunday paper into the recycling bin, you may be throwing out cash. Clipping coupons is still a reliable way to save on your grocery bills. You can also sign up for free coupon exchanges online.

Pay attention to local store circulars advertising sales. Correlate the deals and coupons with your grocery list for optimal savings. Remember, don’t buy things you don’t need just because they are on sale or you have a coupon.

If you want to save on the cost of the Sunday paper, you can also install couponing apps on your smartphone.

6. Live Frugally by Shopping Online

Before you purchase an item at a store, you should look it up online. You may find it on the company’s website for a lower price, and many of them offer free shipping. Some offer impressive online sales that aren’t available in stores.

Online auctions and buy/sell websites are another excellent source for purchasing things inexpensively. While most items are gently used, you can often find new ones in their original package. Be sure to read all item descriptions, shipping information, and guarantees before buying.

7. Discover the Joy of Thrifting

Thrift stores were reusing and upcycling things long before it became popular. If you can find something in good shape that you need at a high price, why buy new? Also, you are kinder to the environment.

You can find almost anything you can imagine in a thrift store. You can also scout out local garage sales to buy great stuff for pennies on the dollar. Check out your local thrift store before buying new.

8. Learn to Upcycle at Home

Use a creative eye around your house to reuse things you already have. Before you pitch or recycle something, ask yourself if you can repurpose it. Kids enjoy learning how to upcycle old stuff into other useful items.

For example, you can cut up worn out towels and soft clothes and turn them into free cleaning rags. Clean food jars and lids to turn into handy storage containers. These are just a few of the countless ideas you can try for frugality around the house.

9. Visit Your Local Library to Live Frugally But Still Read the Latest Releases

Have you noticed the astronomical prices of new books and periodicals in the bookstores? Don’t spend your hard-earned cash for something you will probably read once. Instead, borrow them for free from your local library.

Modern libraries are a treasure trove of books, periodicals, and other media material that is available with your free library card. For your copies, consider joining a local book/magazine exchange group and stay well-read without breaking your piggy bank.

10. Eat at Home More Often

It’s shocking how much you can spend on fast food, and it’s also impressive how much weight it can add to your waistline. While dining on the go is convenient when you’re pushed for time, it’s seldom economical. The same offerings at your local restaurant would be a fraction of the cost if made at home.

Plan your meals each week and resolve to minimize restaurant visits. Try nutritious recipes that your family will love for meals or snacks. Homemade food is usually tastier and healthier, plus you spend more quality time with your loved ones at home.

11. Grow a Victory Garden

Long before the farm-to-table movement, our ancestors knew how to grow and preserve their food. No paltry produce in the grocery store can compare to the taste and quality of something homegrown.

Consider cultivating a small vegetable patch in your back yard with your favorite ones. Don’t have a yard? You can quickly grow tomatoes, strawberries, and other tasty produce in pots on a sunny patio.

plant lemon

12. Keep Your Wardrobe to a Minimum

Is your closet bursting to the seams with clothes you hardly ever wear? Purge your wardrobe and keep a minimum of quality clothes that look attractive to you. Shop thrift stores for beautiful clothes and accessories and avoid trendy items that won’t match several things you already have.

13. Live Frugally by Firing Your Cable TV Provider

Your cable television bill probably bites a big chunk of your income each month. Not only is it usually a waste of money, but too much television is an unhealthy waste of time. Nix the cable and opt for streaming channels on your computer or smartphone.

14. Try Homemade Cleaning Products

With some of the potentially hazardous ingredients in many household cleaning products, mixing your own makes sense. The Internet is full of free recipes for everyday cleaning products. Most use natural ingredients, clean just as well, and are a fraction of the cost.

15. Start a Bartering System in Your Neighborhood

Recruit some like-minded neighbors to start a money-saving bartering group. Trade quality items you no longer need to your group for things you can use. You can also do the bartering system with homegrown produce and handcrafted items.

16. Walk for Health and To Save Cash

Health experts say that walking is one of the best exercises. Instead of driving short distances, consider walking. You save fuel and wear on your car, plus you are doing your body a favor. The environment will also thank you for reducing your carbon footprint.

pop meme

17. Learn How to Do Things Yourself

Do you watch the popular DIY reality shows with envy? With time and practice, you can learn to do many of the same things around your house. While some more complicated things require a professional, you can watch online tutorials and learn how easy it’s to make simple home repairs and updates.

18. Dry Your Clothes Free and Naturally

Clothes dryers use a lot of expensive energy to run. With a simple clothesline and a couple of poles, you can hang your clothes to dry outside as your grandparents did. There’s nothing like the delightful fragrance of wind and sunshine from line-dried clothes.

19. Conserve on Your Water Usage

Water is another expensive utility that can be minimalized. Consider using timers for shorter showers and use stored rainwater for your garden and lawn. Replace faucet washers that drip and waste your water by the gallon.

20. Practice Frugal Giving

Frugal giving does not mean you turn into the Grinch. Learn to buy or make gifts that show you put thought into them. A gift lovingly made by hand will be cherished long after the department store afterthought is gone.

21. Learn to Entertain on a Budget

When your friends or loved ones come to visit, spending time with you is more important to them than an extravagant meal. Find recipes for delicious appetizers and dinners that are delicious and don’t cost a fortune.

live frugally

Final Thoughts: You Can Live Frugally But Still Enjoy Life

Living abundantly doesn’t have to bankrupt you. A frugal lifestyle can keep your debt minimalized while maximizing your joy. You will have more time to enjoy things money can’t buy when you live frugally.


10 Mental Health Tips to Stay Positive During Quarantine

10 Mental Health Tips to Stay Positive During Quarantine

There are few things worse than being under quarantine. You want to provide safety for you and your family, which means utilizing shelter-in-place protocols. However, while you may shield yourself from outside exposures to various viruses and toxins, you must stay positive. By keeping a positive mindset, you will protect your mental health too.

10 Tips for Stay Positive and Protect Your Mental Health

If you ask any mental health professional, they will tell you that if you want to avoid depression, then you need to get out from behind four walls. When you’re under quarantine, you can’t do that as easily. Thankfully, here are ten tips to help you ride out the storm and keep your sanity.

1. Get Plenty of Time Outside to Help Stay Positive

Nothing can give you a better boost in your mood than sunshine. The sun provides ample doses of Vitamin D, which is something your body desperately needs. There’s no reason to stay inside when the weather is beautiful outside.

The key to being outside is to maintain your distance between other folks, while still allowing everyone to enjoy parks and other public spaces. During social distancing, you always want to observe the rules of the quarantine. However, you can play ball, walk hiking trails, and enjoy all that Mother Nature has to offer.

vitamin d deficiency

2. Tackle Household Projects

Do you have tons of little projects around your house that you’ve never got around to doing? Well, being off during the quarantine offers you plenty of downtimes. Why not paint the stairwell or the master bedroom, or can you build that deck you’ve wanted for years?

When the world opens back up and is going at an accelerated speed, you will appreciate all the time you had to work on these projects. Most hardware stores are open for your home repair needs. Head over to the paint department and see what new hue you can splash on your walls.

3. Dive into Spring Cleaning

The adage states that a clean home is a happy home. You’ll be able to stay positive after the restrictions lift by having a better-organized household. Since you want to ensure your family’s health anyway, why not tear out all those closets and wash the curtains? Spring cleaning can be something you get the whole family involved in doing.

Remember to pull out the stove and refrigerator and clean behind those significant appliances. It might be a great time also to have the carpets shampooed and give your abode a deep clean.

isolated during quarantine
Here are 10 ways to feel less isolated during the quarantine.

4. Engage in an Excellent Novel

When it comes to mental health, there are few things as beneficial as a good book. You can transport yourself to another time and place by simply reading a captivating story. If you want to be anywhere but stuck at home, why not join an adventurous story that will engage your mind.

If you have children at home, then you should encourage them to read. Why not have a family book night where you all read a novel a few chapters at a time? You can have some really engaging conversation when you’re all excited and hearing a story come to life.

5. Catch up with Friends and Family

While you may not be able to see your friends and family during quarantine, you can still communicate. Thanks to the power of technology, you can use apps that allow you to have video phone calls.

Since you can’t be there in person, then a video call is the next best thing. Catch up with siblings and relatives both near and far. Technology can bridge the gaps between you and your loved ones, and you can find out all the happenings in their life.

grief quotes

6. Join an Online Support Group to Feel Less Isolated During Quarantine

Some people handle being in lockdown better than others. If you feel that you are on edge and about to have a break, then it’s best to reach out to others for support. The internet is full of people that are experiencing the same emotions as you, and they can be a great source of comfort.

You must remember that your feelings are not abnormal and that many people are having a hard time with sheltering-in-place. Online support groups using apps like Zoom can make you feel as if you are attending a meeting. Seeing all the other faces and hearing their stories can make you think that you’re not alone, and you have someone’s shoulder to cry on.

7. Use Humor as Much as Possible

Much research has gone into the effects of humor on the body’s health. It’s hard to stay blue if you’re laughing. Many people are using Tik Tok to create funny videos.

Could you be the next great chef, or would you like to create a hilarious video using your children and their abilities? You can create anything you want and share it with the world. When you’re laughing and smiling, it helps to pass the time.

Also, your videos can help someone else who may be going through a difficult time right now. Sign up for a daily joke and watch some of the hilarious videos that have gone viral because of their great content.

8. Turn Off the News and Put Down the Phone

In times of uncertainty, it’s important that we only get the right amount of news. You don’t want to burden yourself with all the negativity. Rather, you need to focus on the things that are important for you and your family.

It’s also of supreme importance that you limit your children’s interaction with social media. While video games and watching YouTube are all great things, there should be limits placed on them for mental wellness.

You and your children need to be spending time together playing board games, running in the wind, and cooking dinner together. Putting so much negativity into your spirit can really start to cause issues for your psyche. It’s okay to leave the TV off for a day and have everyone put their cell phones in a box.

9. Stay Positive by Establishing a Comfortable Routine

Daily habits are there because they are important. During quarantine periods, things get all mixed up, and your schedule gets off. However, if your timetable is really off, then it can really mess with your mental wellness.

No matter how hard it is to get out of bed, you must get up at a decent hour. Sleeping in should be no later than 9 am. Also, you and your children should get dressed, brush your teeth and hair, and be presentable for each day. Not only will you look better, but you will feel better when you are up and have completed your daily routine.

When it comes to your children, you must have some patience and understanding when dealing with them. They don’t comprehend what’s going on and why they are at home so much. They will have behavioral issues, and they will not be perfect angels.

Be sure that you react with kindness and understanding. While everyone needs to follow the rules, you can extend some leniency due to the circumstances. Just keep reminding yourself and your family that this will all soon be over.

10. Stay Positive by Finding a Safe Retreat

All this togetherness is sometimes overwhelming. You can and should spend as much time with your children as you can. Those little moments playing a board game or watching them learning to ride a bike will be precious to you one day. However, there are times when you need a little solace.

Do you have a sacred space where you can go and meditate for a while? Meditation should be one of your new daily habits during the shelter-in-place orders. Many studies show how beneficial meditation can be for your mind, body, and soul. Plus, during these sessions, you can learn to get rid of negative feelings and channel positive ones.

If you don’t have a designated space where you can go to escape the world, then you need to go outside and take a walk. Don’t ever underestimate the power of sunshine, fresh air, peace, and quiet. It’s healing beyond measure. Make sure you get at least a half-hour of uninterrupted me time each day.

vitamin c
China is testing the use of Vitamin C to battle coronavirus–and it’s working!

Final Thoughts: Stay Positive and Make the Best of a Tough Situation

It’s important to remember that your children are looking to you during this time of uncertainty. If you are anxious and upset, then they will copy your emotions. However, if you use this time for something good, like spending lots of time together, then they will be happy and playful.

Being under quarantine is not easy for the strongest person. If you feel that you are getting to a point where you need help, then reach out to your doctor or a therapist. There are extra resources in place to help people who struggle with depression and anxiety, as well as other mental illnesses.

The only way to get through a difficult time is by doing things that you love most. So make that gourmet meal, go for a ride on your bike, and by all means, take a nap to rejuvenate yourself. Whatever it is that makes you happy–just stay positive.