What Exactly is the Green Coffee Bean Diet?

Big question markThe green coffee bean diet – you might have heard of it and immediately scratched your head. “There aren’t people out there that just go around eating green coffee beans, are there?” you’ve probably asked yourself. This is of course not true: the green coffee bean diet doesn’t involve filling your cereal bowl with them every morning or sprinkling them liberally over your steak dinner every night. The truth is actually much simpler and straightforward than you’ve probably ever imagined.

It’s Not a Fad Diet

Calling it the “green coffee bean diet” is actually a bit of a misnomer. It’s not like the cottage cheese diet, the grapefruit diet, or any other kind of diet plan that involves switching out your normal food choices and replacing them with just one type of food. Instead, it’s more about what you’re adding to your diet than what you’re taking away: supplementing a well-balanced diet with a green coffee bean extract in tablet or capsule form. It’s really as simple as that – or is it?

The Science Behind the Simplicity

No matter what those late-night infomercials might tell you, there’s no magic pill you can take that will let you burn off 50 pounds of excess body fat in your sleep; it’s simply a medical impossibility. That being said, the effect that taking a green coffee bean extract supplement has on your body is quite startling. Chlorogenic acid, a natural chemical that’s only present in green coffee beans, has a remarkable effect on human physiology: it slows down the rate of glucose release into the bloodstream. What this means is that glucose – the main source of energy for the human body also known as blood sugar – is released slowly into the body at a rate that is used highly efficiently, leaving no excess to be turned into body fat. It’s a safe, all-natural way to ensure you maintain a healthy body weight.

Combination Platter

The green coffee bean diet, while highly effective, works even better when you combine it with an actual weight loss plan. Incorporating some moderate exercise into your weekly routine – about 30 minutes at a time three to five times a week – speeds up your metabolic process, helping you burn fat more efficiently. On top of that, a diet rich in healthy foods such as plenty of fruits and vegetables will also help you lose weight as well. Altogether the power of the green coffee bean turns your body into a fat-burning powerhouse that will see you losing weight and getting fit in no time.

Phytoceramides in 59 Seconds

stopwatchAre you interested to find out more about phytoceramides but don’t have the time to do research on the internet? If so, then this article is written just for you, as we are going to explain all of the nuts and bolts about phytoceramides in only 59 seconds. Let’s get started…

What are the benefits of phytoceramides?

There have been many different benefits associated with using phytoceramide supplements on a regular basis, but some of the main benefits are healthier skin, reduced wrinkles, and improved elasticity of the skin around the all important eye and lip areas.

What are people saying about phytoceramides?

Even just a short visit to popular health blogs and forums will show you that there are many different phytoceramides reviews, some talk about this product http://www.amazon.com/Purely-Holistic-Phytoceramide-Skin-Supplement/dp/B00JXIJTKM/, from people of all ages who have used the product. While we won’t insult your intelligence and tell you that the feedback is 100% positive, it’s definitely worth noting that approximately 85% of the people who have used the product experience many of the benefits mentioned above. Needless to say, this gives you a high chance of experiencing the same results, so don’t let any kind of skepticism get in the way of giving the product an honest try.

How do I use phytoceramides?

Because phytoceramides come in supplement form, you are advised to take one daily with a glass water in the morning. Depending on the dosage, you might even be required to take two capsules (one in the morning and one in the evening). Typically, after around a week you should start to notice some changes in the appearance of your skin, and at the 12 week mark you have a high chance of feeling like a completely different person.

Are phytoceramides recommended by medical professionals?

While there are no current medical professionals who have given their recommendation to phytoceramides, there has been a number of high profile health experts such as Dr Oz calling it the “future” of skin care. Also, it was reported in the New York Times that a number of doctors have been secretly prescribing phytoceramides to their patients, even though the big drug companies have done their best to suppress the product and keep it hidden away from the public.

Where can I buy phytoceramides? Although there is a huge buzz about phytoceramides right now, the product still isn’t available in stores such as Walmart and K-Mart. Therefore, your only real chance of getting your hands on a bottle of phytoceramides is through a trusted internet retail site such as Amazon.

Are you Making These Five Money Mistakes?

money blowing awayMoney makes the world go by, but if you don’t have enough of it flowing in your direction then you might be wondering what you are doing wrong? Let’s face it, being broke is not much fun at all, especially when you are trying to improve the quality of your life but can’t stop living from paycheck to paycheck.

Perhaps you are making some of these five money mistakes? Take a look to see if any apply to you…

Buying designer labels

If you are constantly trying to keep up with the latest fashions then stop right now. Did you know that celebrities are given designer labels for free? The simple truth of the matter is that not many people can really afford to keep buying all of these expensive clothes.

Instead, look for more affordable clothing and even consider buying things such as shirts and trousers in bulk.

Not switching energy provider

It’s a well known fact that millions of households in the USA are paying way too much for their energy. It’s time for you to fight back by switching energy providers!

As an example, if you live in Pennsylvania then you could easily switch to a popular and cheap provider such as PECO with a simple phone call, and within a few hours you would be enjoying the best quality energy for your home at the lowest prices.

Hiring contractors

Another money mistake is hiring contractors for jobs around the home that you could easily do yourself.

At the end of the day, jobs such as painting, plastering, gardening, and plumbing are not really that complicated, and many DIY websites have step by step instructions on how to get the job done. Stop wasting money on contractors and start seeing more money in your bank account.

Eating out

While eating out at a nice restaurant on special occasions is definitely something you should enjoy, once you start eating out multiple times a week then it can seriously start to hurt your finances.

Don’t make this mistake. Instead, swap the restaurant for cooking your own meals at home and just see how much money you save over the next few months.

Keeping up with the Joneses

Are you obsessed with buying everything that you see your friends and neighbors buying? They get a new TV, you get a new TV. They get a new car, you get a new car. They go on an expensive beach holiday, you go on an expensive beach holiday…and on and on it goes.

Trying to keep up with the Joneses is a surefire way to end up broke or heavily in debt. Don’t do it.

Used Car Shopping – Avoid These Mistakes

classic carBuying a used car is a major purchase, so you want to make sure that you do it right and don’t get ripped off. Unfortunately, thousands of people in the UK are scammed every year, and this is all due to making common mistakes that could have been avoided.

Make sure YOU avoid these mistakes when shopping for a used car:

Not checking the vehicle history

There are now many sites online where you can check the full history of any vehicle. This typically costs around £5 per search, and is done almost instantly which means there is no waiting around. If you don’t check the vehicle history then you are making a huge mistake, as the car could have a dodgy past and you wouldn’t even know.

Not using a mechanic as your wingman

Whenever you are looking at Used vehicles for sale it’s a big mistake to go on your own, especially if you don’t know much about cars. For this reason, it’s highly recommended that you use a mechanic as your wingman, so they can inspect the car from top to bottom before you hand over any cash.

Not negotiating

Did you know that shopping for a used car should always involve negotiating over the final price? Many people make the mistake of offering the asking price, which means they end up paying over the odds. Even if you have never negotiated in your life you must not be scared of getting involved in a bit of a haggle, and be prepared to walk away if you the seller doesn’t come down enough in price.

Not taking the car for a test drive

So you’ve seen the “perfect” car and can’t wait to hand over the cash to become the new owner? Not so fast amigo…you still need to take that car for a test drive before parting with your hard earned cash. Recent statistics have shown that 23% of tests drives on used cars uncover hidden problems with the vehicle, which means you should always take the car out for a spin before agreeing to a deal.

Not thinking about ongoing costs

Sure, you might be able to snag that used sports car at a great price, but have you given any consideration to the ongoing costs of running such a vehicle? For example, there is car insurance (always sky high for sports cars), fuel costs, tax, repairs, and all of the other costs that need to be taken into consideration.

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Garcinia Cambogia

The debate about garcinia cambogia shows no signs of slowing down, with weight loss and health experts around the world giving their opinion on the self titled “miracle supplement.”

So what exactly is garcinia cambogia? In short, it is found in a fruit which comes from Asia and Africa and was traditionally used in cooking to add flavor to local dishes.

In the late 20th century western scientists analyzed the extract in high-tech labs, and found that it contained valuable properties that could be used to fight the growing obesity epidemic.

Fast forward a couple of decades and garcinia cambogia is now a multi-million dollar industry all on its own, although not everybody is convinced by the product.

Here are the advantages and disadvantages of garcinia cambogia so you can form your own conclusion.


Stops food cravings

Let’s face it, losing weight is hard, and if you are constantly suffering from food cravings then you are facing an uphill batter to drop the pounds.

Fortunately, in the vast majority of people garcinia cambogia helps to stop the food cravings by suppressing the appetite and keeping the hunger locked away.

There is no denying that using garcinia cambogia is a bit like cheating, but at the end of the day as long as you reach your weight loss goals do you really care? Of course not.

Mood improvement

Another advantage of garcinia cambogia is that it helps to improve your mood. This is particularly important when you are on a diet, as depriving yourself of foods such as burgers and kebabs can make you feel miserable and depressed.

By taking garcinia cambogia you will start the day with a more positive outlook and you might even find yourself happy for no reason at all. Give it a try.


Not for everybody

You must be aware that garcinia cambogia is not for everybody, and you should avoid it completely if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

At the end of the day, it just doesn’t work for some people, and if this includes you then at least you gave it a try. Recent studies show that garcinia cambogia is effective on around 79% of the population.

Be careful when on other medications

If you are on long term medication then you should approach taking garcinia cambogia with caution. The best way forward is to consult with a medical professional who will be able to give you a definite answer on whether or not you can take the supplement.

6 Expert Tips For Buying a Sofa

leather- sofaBuying a sofa is no easy task, especially when you consider that it will be gracing your living room for the next few years. With this in mind, it’s important that you get it right and purchase the perfect sofa for your own individual needs. The 6 expert tips below will help you do that. Let’s get started…

Know your measurements

Always measure very carefully before buying a new sofa. You don’t want to end up with a sofa that is too big! Also, consider if you can get the sofa into the house through the doorways. If not, then it will need to come in pieces and then be assembled once in the living room.

Pay attention to cushions

Something that’s essential for any sofa is cushions. Many people are now choosing scatter cushions when they buy a new sofa as these are both comfortable and fun to look at.

Built to last

It’s a good idea to test out the sofa at the store before you make the purchase. Does it look like it’s built to last or will it break after a couple of years? The best sofas have 8 way tied springs or serpentine springs. Anything less and the sofa is considered to be poorly constructed and not built to last.

Comfortable arms

One thing that many people forget to check is the arms of the sofa. Sure, they might look great, but are they comfortable? Remember, you will be spending a lot of time leaning against the arms of your sofa, which means if they are hard or tough then it won’t make for a very good experience. Ideally, the arms should be soft and flexible.

What materials?

Don’t be scared to ask what materials have been used to make the sofa. Typically, any kind of wood is fine, although Kiln-Dried Oak or Maple is considered to be the best. You should definitely avoid buying a sofa that has been made with metal or plastic as this causes the form to warp after a few months.

Picking a color

While you might be tempted to pick a flamboyant color for your sofa so it really stands out, in the long term this might not be the best idea. At the end of the day, many experts agree that choosing a neutral color is a better idea, due to the fact that if you repaint or change the wallpaper then it is easier to match.

4 Shaving Tips For Men

shaver oldMen around the world are embracing shaving like never before. 50 years ago most men went for the caveman look, and often didn’t shave for weeks at a time. However, those days are now long gone, and the vast majority of men shave at least 3 times a week, with many men shaving once a day.

Also, let’s not forget that shaving other parts of the body has become more popular. For example, more men now shave their own head, and some even shave their chest!

Here are 4 shaving tips for men:

Sensitive skin on the face

If you have sensitive skin on your face then you need to choose an electric shaver very carefully. It’s generally accepted that foil shavers are better for men with sensitive skin due to the softer material used in construction of the machine.

Not only that, but foil shavers will give you a closer shave and is more suitable for using on a regular basis than other types of shavers. Best of all, they are cheaper, which means just about anyone can afford this type of shaver.

A complete shave

When you are aiming for a complete shave and want some extra features to make the job easier, then a rotary shaver is probably the best choice.

Generally more expensive than the foil shaver, these type of shavers have multiple rotating heads to help get into hard to reach places such as the neck. The vast majority of rotary shavers are cordless, which means they can be charged once and then used multiple times in any location you want.

Trimming the beard

In recent years, having facial hair has become more popular. Ultimately though, just allowing your hair to grow for months on end in not seen as cool, and instead, it’s a good idea to trim the hair on a regular basis to leave it looking neat and styled.

How can you achieve this? With electric beard trimmers of course! Most retail outlets now sell a wide range of beard trimmers, or you can check out this review of electric beard trimmer to see what brand and model is the best in 2014.

Shaving your own hair

At the end of the day, the vast majority of barbers now charge outrageous prices, especially if you live in a big city, and in this tough economy who really wants to blow $30 on a short, back and sides?

For men that are smart then shaving your own hair is clearly the way to go. This can either be done by yourself or somebody else, and as long as you buy some good quality hair clippers then the job should be simple and straight forward.

Why Whey Protein is the Best Pre Workout Supplement Out There

power graphicIf you’re interested in maximizing your gains from your workout routine, it’s almost a requirement to take a nutritional supplement to help your body along towards whatever fitness goals you might be striving towards. There are any number of supplements out there that purport to help you burn fat and build muscle, but for the most part there’s only one type that’s actually effective: protein powder supplements. However, not every protein supplement is created equal, and the best supplements for you – especially for your pre-workout meal – are almost certainly ones created from whey protein. Here’s exactly why you need to focus on whey protein supplements over others.

The Best Bet for Almost Everybody

Unless you respond negatively to protein powders derived from dairy sources (or you’re trying to keep a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle) the absolutely best pre workout supplement is almost certainly thought to be whey protein. Not only does whey provide the essential amino acids your body needs to rebuild muscle after a workout, it also aids in digesting fat. This supercharges your body’s ability to not just build muscle mass and tone but also reduce your overall body fat so you can actually see those new muscles you’ve been working on. The best whey protein workout supplements are made from either whey protein hydrolysates or whey protein isolates, which are clinically proven to be more easily digestible than other sources.

Putting the Pep in Peptides

In addition to the main benefit of whey protein in providing an excellent source of protein for both pre-workout and post-workout meals, there’s another ingredient in whey protein that absolutely seals the deal. Whey is one of the best sources out there for groups of small proteins that are known as peptides. What peptides do exactly is that they play a large role in oxygenating your muscles by increasing your blood flow to them. This also helps to more efficiently remove buildup of lactic acid, a by-product of physical exertion that makes you feel tired. In other words, the peptides present in whey will help you exercise more efficiently for longer before you finally call it quits.

Easy As A Scoop Or Two In the Morning

What could be the best thing about adding whey protein powder to your diet is that all you need to do is mix some in with whatever you’re eating. Protein powder makes a great additive to a glass of low-fat milk in the morning after you get up or a half hour before you begin your workout, and most powders even have a satisfying taste of vanilla or chocolate to make it even more easy.

How to Find the Best Contractors For Your Needs

pipe tongsHomeowners know that it’s inevitable that things break down all the time. Whether it’s a leaky tap, a broken laundry dryer, or an ancient refrigerator that needs replacement, your home and its infrastructure needs nearly constant attention and maintenance. Many homeowners without the skill to perform their own maintenance rely on talented contractors to keep their houses in good shape, but it can be hard to find a good contractor sometimes; here are a few tips on finding the best contractor for your needs.

Don’t Be Afraid to Ask Around

If you’re a new homeowner you often don’t have a clue as to who to turn to in the event that your property might need some maintenance or repair. In a situation like this, you owe it to yourself to turn to your friends, family or work colleagues for advice and possibly a referral to someone they have used in the past. Strolling over to a neighbor’s house and asking them their opinion is also an excellent way to break the ice if you’ve just moved into a new neighborhood and also provides your neighbors with the peace of mind of knowing you’re interested in keeping your own home in the best shape it possibly can be, which makes the entire community better. If you’re extremely lucky you’ll end up discovering that you live next door to a handyman that would be more than happy to help you out, perhaps for the price of just a couple of drinks sitting on the porch that afternoon.

No Luck? There’s Always the Internet

Sometimes you’re just out of luck when it comes to getting a good lead on a contractor. Maybe your new neighborhood is so far from your old home that all the family and friends you left behind don’t have any contacts in this new area, or perhaps your neighbors are a bit odd or not very friendly. Whatever the reasoning, you can still find good leads by checking the internet. Just be sure that when you do search for a particular contractor that you specify what you’re looking for. For example, if you’re living in Adelaide and you don’t use a search term such as “plumbers adelaide” to find a plumber to fix your hot water heater, you’re going to be combing through lots of search results for a very long time.

Why Homemade Whipped Cream Is Better For You Than Store-Bought

whipped creamWhipped cream: it’s decadent and delicious, and certainly not exactly a health food. At the same time, there’s something to be said about it – sometimes you just need a little bit on top of whatever you’re eating. You can easily purchase any whipped topping you desire at your local supermarket, but did you know that there’s a better and healthier choice out there? It’s true; believe it or not, homemade whipped cream is much better for you than store-bought.

Not Exactly a Health Food – But Still Better Than the Alternative

No one is going to tell you that you should be eating homemade whipped cream regularly. It’s loaded with milk fat and raw sugar, two ingredients that you should be consuming sparingly if you want to maintain better health levels, but when compared to the ingredient list of the most popular store bought whipped toppings available in your supermarket, you would be surprised to see how these products aren’t whipped cream at all. In fact, most of the ingredients in these toppings (and there are many ingredients indeed) include high fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated vegetable oils, and water. As a result, there’s actually very little dairy products present in a commercial whipped topping. This is something that may be good if you’re lactose intolerant, or perhaps trying to conform to other dietary limitations such as keeping vegetarian, but if you’re trying to avoid putting strange and occult chemicals in your body – and most people are rather concerned with the amount of bizarre concoctions they consume – eating store-bought whipped toppings over whipped cream you can make at home is usually a poor choice indeed.

It’s Not Even That Difficult – Or Expensive

So what’s the alternative to purchasing store-bought whipped toppings instead? The truth is that you can easily make real whipped cream at home. The recipe is incredibly simple, comprising only two to three ingredients – dairy cream, sugar, and possibly vanilla extract for flavor – and turning this mixture into whipped cream can be accomplished with a hand whisk or an electric hand mixer. If you want to save your wrists and want instant whipped cream, you can even purchase a restaurant-grade dispenser, complete with nitrous oxide cream chargers, for a surprisingly reasonable price. You can rest assured that even though you’re adding that extra little touch of flair, the product coming out of that dispenser nozzle is as fresh and natural as your ingredients.

What You Need to Know About Hot Yoga

yogaYou’ve most likely heard of the practice of yoga before. The word conjures up images of ascetics, wise beyond their years, dressed in loose-fitting garments and dispensing wisdom whilst teaching classes to people interested in tying themselves into knots. Surprisingly enough this isn’t that far from the truth, but not all yoga practices are the same. In fact, there’s an amazing amount of variation within the yogic community, thanks to the wide adoption of yoga outside of its native India. There are countless yoga studios all over the world, all of which focus on different aspects of the practice – all of which include not just physical activity but also mental and spiritual pursuits as well.

The Perfect Example

If you’re unsure of how many different types of yoga there are out there, briefly consider one of the most popular and widely-known variants out there. Bikram Yoga, also known as Hot Yoga, offers one very important difference when it comes to most run-of-the-mill yoga experiences: Bikram Yoga studios are known to be exceedingly hot and humid. Routinely heated as high as 40 degrees C (104 degrees F) and with a relative humidity somewhere around 40 percent, hot yoga studios are designed to replicate the conditions of the Indian subcontinent where yoga originates. Originally created by world-famous yoga practitioner Bikram Choudhury in the 1970s, hot yoga is most commonly known as a specific set of 26 yoga poses but has since grown to encompass not just Bikram’s specific teachings, and there is often quite a bit of variation in the number of poses and the specific order they’re performed in.

The Benefits and Drawbacks

While some people might feel that locking themselves in a sweatbox with several other people and doing yoga poses for 90 minutes at a time sounds like an uncomfortable experience, hot yoga is the first choice for many individuals. The increased sweating from the heat can help to flush toxins from the body according to yoga experts, and may also result in an increase in overall flexibility. That being said, hot yoga certainly isn’t for everyone, especially if they suffer from any medical condition that might preclude them from spending prolonged periods of time in hot and humid environments. In addition, because Bikram yoga does encourage practitioners to sweat so profusely, it’s important to prevent dehydration by drinking plenty of water before, during and directly after a hot yoga class.

How to Get the Best Out of Your Vacation to Argentina

fitz roy mountainsEasily considered one of the most breathtaking and beautiful countries in the world, Argentina is a massive country that stretches across the South American continent from the border of tropical Brazil to the frigid waters off the coast of Antarctica. This amazing diversity means that there’s quite literally something for everyone who visits Argentina on vacation, but with a country this large you need to come up with a plan so you don’t miss anything. Here’s how to get the best out of your Argentinian vacation.

Keep Your Expectations in Tune With Your Vacation Length

Visiting Argentina on vacation can easily be overwhelming if you try to squeeze in too many experiences in too little a period of time. You can’t possibly expect to get the most out of Mendoza wine country if you’re only visiting for a weekend; with the amazing diversity of outdoor activities in the region you would easily need at least a week to get your fill. Limit the scope of small visits to major destinations like Buenos Aires or the nearby Mar del Plata, as the close proximity of attractions there will make it easy to see and experience as much as possible in a limited amount of time.

Remember: You’re Not in Kansas Any More

If you’re thinking of spending a nice warm summer down in Argentina but you’re from the Northern Hemisphere, you’d better get your head on straight: you’ll need your winter clothes if you’re going to Patagonia in August and not December. Likewise you’re going to be disappointed if you travel to Bariloche for a week of skiing in February, as you’ll notice a distinct lack of snow, since the seasons are reversed south of the Equator! Keep this in mind if you don’t want to waste a trip.

Get a Guide

If this will be your first trip to Argentina, consider enlisting the aid of a good tour guide. This doesn’t mean just walking around the streets of Ushuaia and hiring the first person you see that’s willing to show you the town, of course. Instead arrange for one of many different Argentina tour packages you can find at your favorite travel and tour agency. These tour packages are often some of the best ways to see the country, especially if you’re looking for a way to enjoy yourself for a minimal additional cost.

What to Do if You’re Injured in New York City

NYC BayWhether you’re a tourist visiting for just a weekend or you’re a life-long resident, spending time in New York City can be a dangerous proposition. Not because that there’s a mugger on every street corner and a rapist in every dark alleyway – while NYC might have a reputation for a dangerous place, violent crime is nowhere near as problematic as it used to be decades ago. No, the true danger to anyone in NYC is actually that you might become involved in an accident you end up injured through no fault of your own. Here’s what you should do in a situation like that.

Find Yourself a Good Lawyer

Personal injuries that occur without any contributory behavior on your part happen can happen anywhere. It doesn’t matter if you live in the most rural of backwoods Montana or in a major metropolitan area like NYC – there’s always a chance of an accident occurring. Sadly, in large population centers like New York City your chances of being involved in accidents are much higher than in other places, and that means the personal injury litigation sector in these larger cities are by necessity that much more robust. Since you might have ended up so injured that you could be precluded from holding down a job for months or even years, it’s in your best interests to pursue compensation – and that means you’re going to need a good lawyer.

Go With a City Native

If you’re a visitor and you ended up hurt badly during a vacation to the Big Apple your first inclination might be to get home as soon as possible and find a local law firm to handle the particulars of your compensation claim. While there’s nothing stopping you from doing so, you might be making a major mistake if you live far enough from NYC that your local law firms have little to no experience in bringing lawsuits in New York City. You would do much better to find a NYC personal injury lawyer that has intimate knowledge of local legal precedent, laws, and the personalities of the judges that live and work within the city. This will maximize the chances of your lawsuit being a successful one – and if you’ve been injured seriously enough that you can no longer work, can you really gamble with the possibility of losing your personal injury claim?

What You Need In Your Survival Kit

camping survivalEmergencies can happen at the drop of a hat, and they usually happen in such a way that you won’t have much time to react or prepare. Whether you’re caught in a freak hurricane or snowstorm or end up stranded in the wilderness because your car breaks down, you might be on your own for a few days; what you need is a good survival kit prepared in advance and ready to go to help you out. Here’s what every great survival kit has in it, and why it’s so important.

Just the Basics

First and foremost you’re going to need some very basic items that just about everyone considers essential in every survival kit. Items like a flashlight and extra batteries, a first aid kit, an emergency blanket or two for keeping yourself warm and dry in inclement weather, and perhaps an extra set of clothes or shoes. Good things to add to these basics would be any sort of personal hygiene product you or your family might need like important medications, deodorant, a spare pair of glasses, or extra contact lens cases with solution, a multi-purpose tool like those famous Swiss Army knives, and enough non-perishable emergency supplies to last at least three days. Items like granola bars or trail mix can help keep you alert and from suffering hunger pangs, while bottles of water or sports drinks can keep you hydrated and replace important electrolytes that you would otherwise lose through exertion.

Better to Have and Not Need than the Other Way Around

The basics are a great place to start, but there’s always room for more items to turn round out your survival kit. Most people wouldn’t think of including more items, but there’s a definite need for them in order to be ready for anything.  Making sure you have some extra cash stashed in your survival kit is an excellent idea that many people might not think about, but in the event that there’s no access to ATM networks during an emergency having cash on hand will become immediately important. Moreover, copies of important identification documents like birth certificates, marriage licenses, or proof of ownership can help if the emergency situation precludes you from returning to reclaim the originals, and including an old-fashioned fold-out map or two of your area will be a big help once your GPS or mobile phone runs out of power. Finally, a few days’ worth of food is a good start but any survival kit could always benefit from an expanded selection of survival rations. Buying a few weeks’ worth of specially prepared freeze-dried survival meals are a cheap and easy way to fix this;  see emergency food supply inventory websites for the best place to find emergency survival food.

How to Prepare for Living in Singapore

singaporeFinding and renting a home in Singapore doesn’t have to be a logistical nightmare, but sometimes it is. Even if you’re moving into a first-class establishment like The Citron Residences in District 8, there are some very specific steps you have to follow. Here are some things to keep in mind if you want your new life in Singapore to go smoothly right from the beginning.

Get Your Affairs In Order

Once you’ve found the place you’d like to live, there’s a specific procedure for renting a place to live in Singapore. It starts with a Letter of Intent, which is an agreement between you and your prospective landlord that you’re interested in a particular property. Most letters of intent also have a deposit requirement in addition to specifics such as what types of furniture or appliances – if any – come with the place. Once it’s time to move in, you’ll need to sign a Tenancy Agreement as well, which is a fairly straightforward document if you’re familiar with rental agreements. Signing that will tie you down for the term of the agreement, so make sure before you put your John Hancock on that contract that you’ve got everything squared away. One of the more important clauses to consider having added on is something called a “diplomatic clause,” which can be a real lifesaver if you’re in Singapore at the behest of your place of employment. If your company relocates you out of the country before your lease is up, a diplomatic clause will allow you to break your lease if needed – and that could save you a lot of pain and suffering.

The Bare Necessities

If there’s one thing that some people seem to overlook sometimes when settling somewhere new, it’s that they have to sort out all those important utilities so that they can live comfortably. Things like electricity, internet access, and cable television are kind of like air – you don’t notice them when they’re all around you, but sure figure out what you’re missing in a hurry if they’re gone. Singapore is no exception of course, but don’t worry: dealing with Singapore utility companies are easy, considering that the official language for business, commerce and legal matters is English. You can easily contact SP Services for electric and water and Singtel for landline or internet connectivity. You can also find yourself cable television from a provider such as Singtel or Starhub, but beware: if you’re going to be making use of a television in your home you’re going to need to pay a TV license fee, which is used by the Singapore government to support public television and radio broadcasting throughout the city-state.

4 Interesting Facts About Machu Picchu

machu picchu cloudsMachu Picchu: a mysterious abandoned city high in the mountains of Peru, has captured the imagination of the entire world for over a century. Countless books have been written about it, movies have been filmed there; there are even Machu Picchu tours that are given on a regular basis. However, Machu Picchu isn’t necessarily as mysterious as it sounds. In fact here are four true facts about the site.

It Was Discovered by Accident

Believe it or not, the explorer that stumbled across Machu Picchu in 1911 wasn’t even looking for it. Yale professor Hiram Bingham was actually on the hunt for the old Inca capital of Vilacamba. Instead he found an overgrown treasure trove of architecture and archaeological finds that were remarkably well-preserved – and the rest is history.

It Was Probably the Heart of the Inca Empire

While Machu Picchu wasn’t the capital of the Inca Empire, it was most likely the heart. Architects, archaeologists, and anthropologists all believe that the city was built expressly as the abode of the Inca Emperor. There were terraced fields of fertile soil ringing the city in order to grow food to support the inhabitants, making it remarkably self-sufficient. It’s believed that site was one of the last bastions of Inca society, only abandoned ahead of the inexorable march of Spanish settlers that drove the Inca from power – part of why it’s preserved so well.

There’s No Mortar In Any of the Walls

One of the most curious features of Machu Picchu is typical of Inca architecture – there’s no mortar holding the walls together. This isn’t because it’s flaked away over the hundreds of years since its abandonment, either – Inca stonemasons were so highly talented that they cut the stones of their walls precisely enough to never require even the slightest amount of mortar. You can see their handiwork – intact – even today.

The Inca Were More than Masters of Stone

While the masonry skills of ancient Inca craftspeople are stunning, there’s an even more incredible secret that Machu Picchu hides. In the building that’s become known as the Temple of the Sun, a single ray of light penetrates a specially-situated window and illuminates a large altar-like rock on exactly one day a year: the summer solstice, revealing that the Inca knew much more about astronomy and the world about them than most people would ever expect them to.

3 Ways to Manage Top of Foot Pain

sufferingEveryone knows what to do if the soles of your feet ache after a long day of walking around. Whether it’s soaking them in some Epsom salts, putting them up or simply getting a nice massage from a willing and understanding spouse, it’s easy to deal with. However, if the top of your foot hurts you might be more than a little perplexed, considering how top of foot pain doesn’t always have a visible reason behind it. This doesn’t change the fact that you’ve still got to deal with it though, so here are three ways to manage top of foot pain.

Put Out the Fire

There’s any number of causes for top of foot pain, but regardless of how it was started there’s usually one way to finish it and that’s through a generous application of anti-inflammatory treatment. Using over-the-counter non-prescription strength anti-inflammatories is one way to reduce pain caused by swollen joints, tendons and muscles, and usually works for the majority of minor injuries that cause top of foot pain. In addition you can also apply a cold compress to reduce inflammation and swelling, but ensure that you don’t leave it on for too long as overexposure to cold can do more harm than good to inflamed body tissues.

Stretch It Out

Just as there’s more than one way to skin a cat, there are a myriad of ways to treat top of foot pain. One effective method is stretching properly, and not just the foot: in many instances top of foot pain can be caused by an overexertion of the ankle joint because the lower leg and calf is too stiff. Taking the time to safely and carefully stretch your calf muscles out – especially before and after any strenuous exercise that will involve sprinting, jumping, or other fancy footwork – can give your body the flexibility it needs to not over-stretch your ankle in the first place.

Roll the Tape

Finally, for more severe injuries such as stress fractures there may be only one true option: immobilization. This doesn’t necessarily mean encasing your entire foot in a cast, though; for the most part simply taping up the upper foot and ankle can provide the support and immobilization that your body needs in order to heal itself. Many medical professionals will also tell patients with moderate upper foot pain to combine immobilization with liberal use of anti-inflammatory medications as well in order to manage the pain and speed healing.

Why Lip Fillers Might Be the Best Option For You

lipsNo one likes to look themselves in the mirror and be disappointed by what they see. It’s especially upsetting to have to deal with a problem that you’ve had your entire life like thin lips. Sure, if you’re lucky – or good – you can hide the fact that your lips are thinner than you like with a judicious application of makeup, but sometimes even if you’re a whiz with a lip pencil it’s not enough, and as a result your personal confidence can take a serious beating if you’re feeling too self-conscious to smile. Luckily there are ways to get fuller, more plump lips – and the best option out there for you might just be a lip filler treatment.

Safe and Non-Surgical

Lip fillers occupy an ideal place in the worlds of cosmetic and dermatological medicine. It’s a safe, temporary procedure that doesn’t involve major surgery, yet one that can still deliver excellent results. You cosmetic surgeon simply injects a small amount of lip filler into the target area. There’s only a bit of  a pinch – one that can usually be counteracted through topical anesthetics such as Lidocaine – and sometimes a little swelling following the injection, but those are the majority of the possible side effects of using lip fillers, especially if you’re using a lip filler that’s based on an all-natural formula that won’t risk damage to the skin of your lips in any way.

How It’s Possible

The reason that lip fillers are so safe is because the majority of lip fillers available for cosmetic lip enhancement are based on harmless and even beneficial substances that are already present in your body. The most popular base for a lip filler formula is hyaluronic acid, a substance that’s already present in your body. It has hydrating, moisturizing, and lubricating effects in places such as joints and has even been used to help people recover quickly from eye surgery. Hyaluronic acid does a fantastic job at providing that extra heft to your lips for the same reason it can cushion the aching joints of an arthritis sufferer, and when it’s combined with other all-natural and safe substances a lip filler based off of a hyaluronic acid formula is perfect for smoothing away lip wrinkles and giving you a kisser that will be the envy of your friends.

How to Find Ideas for the Best Wedding Gifts

wedding presentsWhen two of your closest and most loved friends decide to tie the knot, it’s only natural to want to celebrate that union with a gift that’s unique, wonderful and charming – just like your friends. However, this can make for a very difficult endeavor; if you’re trying to find something truly one-of-a-kind and perfect, you could end up with some very sleepless nights, believe it or not! Luckily there are some ways to get some ideas for the best wedding gifts for that beloved couple of yours; here are some great places to look.

Cheaters Sometimes Do Win

Your first stop to find great ideas for wedding gifts should always be the couple’s wedding registry, even though it might feel a bit like cheating. It’s a rare pair indeed that doesn’t at least put a rudimentary gift registry together, especially since the registry is a tool for helping guests to know exactly what a soon-to-be newly married couple needs to start their new life together. However, this doesn’t mean you just need to purchase something off that list and be done; if you want a truly memorable gift you might want to shy away from what your couple has chosen, but you can use the items they’ve already earmarked as a great jumping off point.

Think About The Couple

Next, if you want a truly memorable gift to give your friends you need to have a good hard think about the two of them, what they’re like, and what they would truly enjoy. It doesn’t have to necessarily be a big and expensive gift either; as long as it’s something that has sentimental value for your friends, this can easily be enough. If your newlyweds met on a tropical cruise for instance you don’t have to buy them two first-class tickets to the Bahamas but you can get them a handsome picture frame for their wedding photos that has a Caribbean theme. Also if your friends share a passion for a particular hobby such as puzzles or games, providing them a customized 3D puzzle of a landmark from where they plan to go on their honeymoon is another thoughtful idea – imagine their delight to have a beautiful model of the Eiffel Tower they can put together as a couple to commemorate their honeymoon trip to Paris!

Ask for Help

Finally if you simply can’t decide on what to get your favorite couple, consider consulting family members or mutual friends for ideas. In fact this might lead you all to going in together on a large and possibly expensive gift – several wedding guests chipping in on one large but incredibly special gift can often be much more memorable and welcome than a plethora of thoughtful yet smaller gifts. A wedding is an event that celebrates the beginning of a new family after all, so what could be better than your own chosen family banding together to truly commemorate the occasion?

How to Recession-Proof Your Investments

The days of panic and shame that come with near-economic collapse may be behind us as a global economy, but the threat still remains that things may worsen once more. Investors are keen to avoid the mistakes of the late 2000s that saw so many people lose their shirt, and attention has turned to ways to “recession-proof” your investment portfolio. While it may sound like a pipe dream to some, there are quite a few ways to construct a stable and resilient portfolio that will weather the next economic storm successfully; here are a few good ideas on how to accomplish this goal.

Some Things Don’t Change in a Recession

If there’s one thing you can rely upon in times of economic strife, it’s that many investment opportunities aren’t affected nearly as strongly as others. One excellent example of this phenomenon is in the pharmaceutical industry, as people get sick just as much in good economic times as they do in bad ones. Pharmaceutical stocks might dip slightly in the face of an overall recession but are usually resilient enough to survive relatively unscathed, especially long-established companies with excellent cash flow such as Pfizer.

Some Things Do Change – and For the Better

The majority of people tighten their belts in times of economic uncertainty, and that leads to most retail-based investment opportunities losing steam and perhaps even grinding to a halt. However, there are some industries that actually do much better in recessions than when times are good; several entertainment and vice marketplaces receive a substantial boost in dark times as many people seek to find some temporary peace through going to the movies or indulging in alcohol and tobacco products, and investment in these companies could lead to offsetting a portion of your portfolio losses.

The Gold Standard

Finally there’s a secret weapon when it comes to recession-proof investments: precious metals. Gold based IRAs are a perfect example of this, as investing substantially in gold backed IRAs prior to a period of economic uncertainty will result in a massive return on investment as gold has traditionally risen in price by a substantial amount whenever there’s a recession, though the price per ounce has been known to retreat slightly in times of prosperity. You can click here for a gold IRA account that will provide you with excellent value and a high likelihood of a return on your investment if you’re interested in learning more.

How to Keep Your Skin Looking Good Without Going Broke

women and credit cardIt’s hard going through life constantly struggling with disappointing skin. Nobody wants to feel like they’ve got an alligator purse strapped to their face, but sometimes it can be difficult to find skin care products that aren’t prohibitively expensive. However, just because you don’t have the kind of cash on hand that you would need for a celebrity-style spa treatment every day or so doesn’t mean that you can’t find low-cost alternatives that work just as well or even better. Here are some tips on keeping your skin looking good without having to take out a second mortgage on your home.

Find a Dual-Action Skin Cleanser

While you might consider simply using a bar of soap to wash your face every day simply because it’s cheap, doing so will probably make your skin so much worse that you’ll soon be sorry you even considered it. Lucky for you there are some very affordable dual-action skin cleansers on the market that can give you excellent results. The trick is to find a cleanser that has either a gentle non-soap wash or a mild glycolic acid as the main ingredient, as this will both strip away unwanted levels of skin oils and protect against dry skin by preventing loss of too much moisture.

Protect Yourself

An ounce of prevention can certainly help you to keep your skin looking good, and spending just a few dollars on an oil-free moisturizer that also features a small amount of UV skin protection (at least SPF 15) can prevent the kind of day-to-day damage that requires more expensive skin treatments. This isn’t just a good idea for your face, either – any exposed skin, whether it be on your arms, shoulders, legs, hands or feet can always benefit from not just some extra moisturizing but protection from the sun’s harmful rays. It’s not just a good idea during sunny days, either – you can get a sunburn just as easily in overcast weather than you can on a clear day, so avoid the whole problem and you’ll be much better off.

Cut Your Costs Without Sacrificing Quality

Finally you need to make sure you’re buying high-quality alternatives to expensive skin care treatments or equipment. Many people labor under the misconception that a generic skin care brand is nowhere near as effective as the expensive name brand items, but this simply isn’t true; in fact in many cases your quality could be up to par or even better. An excellent example of how you can make a significant savings is by purchasing generic replacement brush heads for your sonic skin cleanser. A name-brand replacement brush head can be quite expensive, but you can pay a fraction of the cost if you purchase a high-quality generic Mia 2 brush heads such as the ones found at http://www.amazon.com/Compatible-Replacement-Cleaning-Cleansing-Guaranteed/dp/B00J2EJNUS/. These brush heads work just as well, and are notable in that they come in a two-pack which maximizes your savings by a significant margin.