Cats Try Catnip For The First Time

I found the above video so entertaining that I thought I would share it with you on my blog. Though not all cats respond to catnip (about 50 to 70 percent respond), the ones who do are hilarious to watch as they roll around, lick, chew, and rub up against the catnip as well as whatever surface the catnip has touched. There is a substance in the catnip plant known as nepetalactone which causes an intense, euphoric reaction.

I purchased a catnip plant in May, and it has quadrupled in size since I purchased it. Despite the fact that I was aware that Nepeta cataria is in the Mint family of plants, I was surprised by how strongly it smelled like mint. I also figured that my cats would enjoy the fresh catnip since dried catnip loses its potency over time. One day in late June, I decided to give all four of my cats a sprig of catnip to see who would respond to the fresh leaves. Two of my cats couldn’t care less about the catnip, while the other two went absolutely nuts. I have posted videos of the two cats in my household who are catnip responders for your enjoyment.

Koji’s first exposure to catnip was hilarious!

Shima has always been a responder, but this was the first time she had experienced fresh catnip leaves, and she loved the experience.

Tech Tools for Managing Your Health When You Have Diabetes

Photo Credit: Anna Shvets via Pexels

Please check out this informative and excellent article by Karen Weeks of Elderwellness.net which has great tips for managing your overall health if you have diabetes.

Managing diabetes is a full-time job that can interfere with your life in more ways than one. But this common disease doesn’t have to rob you of a healthy, active lifestyle. Adopting healthy habits is essential for managing diabetes, preventing complications, and giving you better control over your life—and you don’t have to spend a fortune to do it! If you’re looking for new ways to improve your health, check out the tips below presented by Stacey Naito.

Get Moving to Lose Weight

Weight loss is a crucial element of any diabetes management plan. Carrying excess weight can increase insulin resistance and make it harder for people with diabetes to control their blood sugar. However, a recent trial reported by Medical News Today found that losing weight may reverse the effects of early type 2 diabetes. Fortunately, aerobic exercise is a very effective weight-loss tool! Also see if you can find ways to keep moving at the office. Many of us are sedentary at work, so see how often you can take the stairs or stand during a meeting.

Fitness trackers are affordable, user-friendly devices that can help you get moving and shed those pounds safely. There are several models to choose from with different features to meet a variety of health and fitness needs. For example, some fitness trackers include heart rate monitors, while others are capable of tracking your sleep stages. Take a look at your options from stores like Dicks Sporting Goods, Academy, or Walmart. 

Lastly, don’t hesitate to add some music to the mix! Sometimes, listening to music—or even a podcast—can provide you with the motivation you need to push through your exercise routine. You can invest in a speaker to add some quality to your tunes, as well as a stand that can keep your phone upright if you’re using it to watch something as you work out. Do what works best for you. Find what motivates you and work it into your routine.

Eat Clean

Adopting a nutritious diet is another effective way to lose weight and keep diabetes under control. EatingWell recommends developing a low-calorie, nutrient-packed meal plan full of complex carbohydrates, fresh veggies, healthy fats, and lean protein. There are many free apps out there that can help you develop healthy meal plans on any budget. For example, Mealime is great for finding personalized recipes and generating shopping lists. Similarly, Meal Planner Pro offers budget-friendly meal planning for people with a variety of conditions, including diabetes.

Keep Your Blood Pressure Under Control

Many complications can arise if you don’t keep your blood pressure in check. Unfortunately, high blood pressure is exceedingly common in people with diabetes, since this disease causes damage to the arteries. Alarmingly, constant high blood pressure can lead to everything from kidney failure to a heart attack. Keeping your blood pressure down might lessen your chances of peripheral vascular disease and stroke. The good news here is that blood pressure monitors are affordable and easy to use. Take a reading often, and contact your doctor if your numbers are consistently high.

Learn About Your Body

You can also try free and low-cost apps to learn how different foods affect your body. Use diabetes apps and food trackers to log what you eat and when, so you can learn how different foods affect your blood sugar levels. With these apps, you’ll be able to monitor long-term trends and identify the foods and activities that make you feel your best.

Your doctor can be a great resource for diabetes-related information and questions. And if getting to the doctor’s office is a challenge, you can try finding online doctors. Once you’ve found a great fit, you can do video appointments and pick up prescribed medications at your convenience, and most accept a variety of insurance options.

Manage Stress

Did you know that stress can worsen your diabetes? Stress increases blood sugar levels, raises blood pressure, increases insulin resistance, impairs sleep, and promotes emotional eating. If you’re struggling with stress, use mindfulness apps like Headspace and Pacifica to calm your mind and learn how to manage anxiety throughout your day. Other apps, like Relax Melodies and Calm, use gentle music and sounds to promote relaxation—these are great if you have trouble sleeping! Most of these apps include free versions and offer affordable subscription options to unlock more features.

Living with diabetes can be tough, to say the least. Fortunately, a variety of low-cost apps and tech devices can make it easier to adopt healthy habits and enjoy the life you want. Use all of the tools at your disposal for guidance and motivation, so you don’t have to face diabetes alone.

Dr. Stacey Naito is passionate about feeling and looking good. Her blog is full of helpful resources on eating well, getting active, and living your best life.

A Trip To Heaven

Copyright: dade72

Last month I bumped into an acquaintance while grocery shopping, and we had a nice chat while standing in the produce section. Matt (I changed his first name slightly) was someone whom I used to see all the time at my old gym, and though we seldom spoke to each other, he always seemed pleasant. During the conversation, Matt mentioned that he was going out of town later that week for a 9 day trip in which he was planning to meet up with his parents and siblings in Fort Lauderdale, Atlanta, and Detroit. He also mentioned that he was very excited about an event which he and his family were planning to attend in Atlanta, and then he aske me if I had heard of Joel Osteen. I realized that he was going to the Harvest Crusade, and that he was a deeply Christian man. Since I am not a religious person, and I let expletives fly out of my mouth on a regular basis, I thought, uh oh, I need to keep things clean around this guy.

Even before Matt revealed that he was a religious man, I was a bit uncomfortable while talking with him, because he mentioned several times how pretty he thought I was. Nevertheless, I gave him my phone number without hesitation when he asked for it. I figured that because I had known Matt for 18 years, I felt comfortable with giving him my contact information. He texted me later that day, asking if I wanted to come over to his place and possibly have dinner with him, to which I agreed.

When I arrived at his place, I stepped into the foyer and noticed that every single item of furniture and all the wall art was completely white. I had walked into a white on white, tone on tone domicile which was trippy to say the least. I turned slightly to the right and saw a white bannister leading up to the second floor and wrapping around a platform, upon which sat a two foot tall, completely white statue of Jesus in flowing robes. When I saw the Jesus statue, Matt started telling me about how much he had coveted a Jesus statue, and that he was fortunate to have driven by a street vendor who was selling the one he ended up buying. He then mentioned to me that he asked the man if he had any other white, religious items for sale, whereupon the man handed a catalog to Matt, and Matt ordered about a dozen other pieces. The other pieces which he purchased consisted of numerous bas relief cherubs, several crosses, a bas relief Last Supper, and a bas relief (the only secular piece) ballerina and male ballet dancer in an embrace.

Matt then showed me the kitchen, which had all white cabinets and counters, as well as white appliances. Next was the second floor, which consisted of a white bathroom, an all white master bedroom, and a white home office. When I stepped into the office, I saw a framed diploma from a theological seminary, and when I was close enough to read it, I saw Matt’s name: MATTHEW LAWRENCE HEAVEN. I turned to him and said, “Your last name is Heaven?” Matt grinned and verified that his last name was indeed Heaven.

We went back downstairs, and Matt asked if I wanted to get something to eat, or if I just wanted to sit on the sofa and make out. I told him that I wasn’t making out with him, and suggested that we go to dinner. We stepped into his garage, and once again, everything except the light gray garage floor, was white. We ended up having a nice dinner, and our conversation definitely was interesting, but I simply couldn’t get over the fact that his place was so oddly, obsessively, WHITE.

You’ll Let ME Go Now?

Copyright: maridav

One of my biggest pet peeves is when someone I am speaking with on the phone says, “I’ll let you go now.” Wait a minute, YOU are gonna let ME go? Since when are YOU in charge of MY time? Let’s be real about the situation in which someone might be tempted to use this manipulative statement when signing off on a phone call.

If the person you are chatting with needs to go, then that is what the person should say. It’s as simple as saying, “Well, I have to run, hope you have a great day!”, but instead some people insist on throwing the responsibility of the conversation on you. It is damned RUDE. One of my closest friends says this all the time, and I cringe every single time he utters it.

So if you are someone who says this frequently, you might want to consider changing that habit.

Bad Roommates – Lorraine

Copyright: khosrork

The third and final installment in my blog series on nightmare roommates is devoted to Lorraine, a woman with a whole host of mental issues, a nasty attitude, and a sense of entitlement the size of Texas. When my other roommate Myra (who is incidentally the best roommate I have ever had, and a very dear friend) and I met Lorraine, we could see that she was pretty dramatic, but we both attributed it to the fact that she was a professional dancer. We all seemed to get along nicely though, and Lorraine moved in.

About a month after Lorraine moved in, a bizarre incident occurred. Myra and I were in the kitchen chatting, and at one point I opened up the freezer to get a bag of shrimp out to thaw. When I did so, I noticed that two bags of ground coffee which I had bought had been opened. I pulled them out of the freezer and noticed that one bag had about 2 tablespoons left in it, while the other had just over a teaspoon. I asked Myra if she had opened up the bags of coffee, and she told me that she hadn’t, to which I replied, “Ok, it had to have been Lorraine. I’ll talk to her later about it.” Myra and I continued to chat about other topics, and I started the thawing process on the shrimp.

A few minutes later, Lorraine stomped down the stairs, looking very angry. She said, “Oh my God, so you’re talking about me behind my back?” Myra and I just looked at each other, because we were both so taken aback by Lorraine’s accusation. I told Lorraine, “Oh not at all, I just figured I’d talk to you about the whole coffee thing, because the coffee which is in the main tin is what is community property, not the unopened bags I have in the freezer.” Lorraine immediately retorted, “YOU said the coffee was for EVERYONE. Well, you know what? I won’t touch ANY of your stuff ever again!”, then marched back up the stairs and slammed her door. Two minutes later, her door opened, and she came down the stairs with her phone in hand, yelling to the person on the other line (turned out it was her grandmother) that she couldn’t take it anymore, that she had just been disrespected, etc. She went down to the first floor, slammed the front door, and was gone for several minutes. Then she re-entered the house, still on the phone, still yelling at her grandmother, went up to her bedroom on the third floor and slammed the door. This pattern continued for another 15 minutes or so, in which she would come up the stairs, slam her door, then walk down the stairs and outside repeatedly.

Lorraine refused to talk to Myra or me for a couple of weeks, then she sent a series of text messages to us both in which she apologized profusely for her outburst, told us she loved and respected us both, and wanted good blood between us. I was startled by Lorraine’s complete change in behavior and began developing a mistrust of her behavior, especially because she would often burst into the house yelling at someone on the phone. She suffered from severe depression and also developed some strange physical symptoms which she was sure stemmed from some deadly and incurable disease.

Incident number two occurred several months after the first one. Lorraine had informed me that the latch on the sliding glass door which led to our balcony wasn’t working, and she asked me to look at it when I got home. I had been working all weekend at a fitness expo and had gotten into a heated argument with my booth mate during the drive back, so I was in no mood to repair a sliding glass door latch. Nevertheless, Lorraine chose to ignore the fact that I was in a bad mood, and badgered me to take a look at the latch. I fiddled with the latch for a couple of minutes but was unable to fix it, and I told her that I would look at it later. Lorraine promptly started screaming, “WHAT? WHAT? That’s unacceptable! You don’t talk to me like that!”, and I was completely stunned by her outburst. She ran upstairs, slammed her door, then opened it a couple of minutes later, stormed down the stairs and out the front door, her phone in hand, yelling at her grandmother about what a bitch I was. She continued this up the stairs, down the stairs ritual numerous times in the span of about ten minutes. Once again, I got the silent treatment from Lorraine for about two weeks, followed by a stream of apology texts.

The third time Lorraine went off on me was after she had been living in the house for over a year. I had returned from a trip to Denver late at night, and I was exhausted. I was at the kitchen sink washing cat dishes, when Lorraine entered the house, walked up to the second floor, and with a flourish, said “Hello…” (her typical tone when she was begging for attention), to which I replied, “Oh, hi.” She said, “What are you doing?”, and I replied that I was washing cat dishes, that I had just gotten home from a trip. Suddenly, she said, “No NO NO! I don’t like your ENERGY! I don’t have to put up with this bullshit!”, and she clumped up the stairs. You guessed it, Lorraine made a phone call, rushed down the stairs and outside, then continued the sequence a bunch of times before returning to her room and slamming the door.

I went upstairs to my bedroom around 11 pm and crawled into bed. Around 12:15 am, I woke up to the sound of Lorraine’s hair dryer, so I texted her with, “Hey, I’m trying to sleep. Would you mind not blow drying your hair so late? Thanks.” I immediately got a nasty response from her in which she stated that she had the right to do whatever she wanted, whenever she wanted, that I had no right to just text her, and that if I had a problem with something, that I should speak to her in person. I told her that since it was so late, and I was IN BED, that speaking to her in person didn’t seem feasible.

Lorraine didn’t speak a word to me for 5 weeks. Then one day, she texted me, saying that she wanted to check in with me to see what I wanted her to do with catsitting (I had a 14 day trip to Japan approaching), and that she was delighted to do whatever I needed her to do. By this time I was so terrified of her and so accustomed to walking on eggshells whenever she was around that I didn’t even know how to proceed. I haltingly agreed to let her catsit, and never addressed her outburst from 5 weeks prior.

Finally, after over a year and a half of living with this woman, she submitted her 30 day notice of vacancy. The weekend that she entered the house to remove her belongings, she became hostile towards me and even threatened to punch me at one point. I was already at the point where I was totally willing to call the cops, and I told her so, which convinced her to rethink the idea of assaulting her roommate. She made such a mess on the walls of her bedroom that I had to have the entire room repainted, an expense which was covered by a portion of her security deposit.

I truly hope that I never have any more awful roommates, because I have paid my dues by enduring unacceptable living situations with some pretty messed up people!

Bad Roommates – Richard

Copyright: tinnakornlek

Part 2 of my blog series on horrible roommates continues today with Richard, who moved in with a 3 pound teacup Chihuahua named Lola and a 20 pound Chihuaha mix named Poopers. Richard was very forthright in telling me that he had previously dealt with a crystal meth addiction, but was fully recovered. To set my mind at ease, he gave me his father’s phone number and told me that if any issue ever arose with him, I could call his father and he would set everything straight. Richard then moved in, and told me that I would never have to worry about his dogs because he crated them at night in his room, and was completely responsible for their feeding, walks, and bathing. There were no issues with Richard for the first few months, and he was proud of himself because he had been able to continue his employment as a dog groomer, a job which he enjoyed immensely.

Then one Sunday morning, I was awakened at 4 am by the sound of Lola yelping and crying in Richard’s room. I walked across the hall to Richard’s room and knocked on the door, calling out for him. When there was no response, I opened the door to find the dogs in their respective crates, with food and water bowls on the opposite side of the room. The crate doors were closed and latched. I suddenly realized that I hadn’t seen Richard since Friday afternoon, and became very concerned that these poor pooches were trapped in their crates since then. I immediately took them out of their crates, put kibble in their food bowl, and filled their water bowl with water. Once they had something to eat and drink, I took them outside so that they could go to the bathroom and run around a bit. I ended up letting the dogs roam around the house, and spoke with my other roommate Paul later in the morning about splitting dog walking duties with him, to which he heartily agreed.

I dialed Richard’s dad’s number around noon that Sunday, and a young man answered. When I asked if Richard’s dad was there, I was informed that he was not there. I then asked if Richard happened to be there, and was told that he wasn’t there either, but my gut told me that he probably was there. So I told the guy who answered the call to inform his buddy Richard that he was in big trouble, and that because he had locked his dogs in crates for an extended period of time, I would be contacting animal rights organizations to report Richard.

Richard showed up two days later, but wouldn’t look me in the eye, and he looked like he had been tweaking. He apologized for the dogs, said he would take better care of them, and then left. This is when Richard began to exhibit some very bizarre behavior. He would sneak into the house very late at night, grab clothes or whatever else he needed, and then quickly leave without taking care of his dogs. Since I didn’t trust Richard, Paul and I continued to feed and walk the dogs, and we would crate them at night. Then after about two weeks of this pattern, Richard let the dogs out of the crates one night and then left. The next morning, the dogs had managed to urinate and defecate all over his bed, the carpeted floor, and a stack of his dirty clothing. It was like they lashed out at him by peeing and pooping everywhere. The situation was so bad that the smell of dog urine and feces had soaked into the floorboards, and even after I replaced the carpeting in that room, the faint odor of dog waste persisted.

The day after the dogs had their grand excretory event, I contacted an attorney and had an eviction letter drawn up which I put on Richard’s bedroom door and also sent to his dad. I also called him and left him a message letting him know I was looking into having the dogs rehomed immediately. It took several days for Richard to clear out his belongings, but he managed to empty the room, and he also unfortunately took the dogs with him. His security deposit was spent on replacement carpeting for the room.

I can only imagine what happened to Richard, but I assume that he fell completely back into his meth addiction.

Bad Roommates – Sean

Copyright: nuiiko

Over the past 36 years, I have had a lot of roommates, some of whom were pretty cool, one who was awesome and became one of my dearest friends, and a handful who were such rotten people that it took me a while to recover from the craziness they brought into my home. The list of bad roommates is actually larger than I would like for it to be, but I figured I would select the three most despicable ones to discuss in this blog post. The ONLY reason why I have changed the names of these individuals in my stories is because one is certifiably nuts (borderline and histrionic personality disorder…no, I didn’t live with Amber Heard!), and the other two are addicts who can’t be trusted in any way, shape or form.

The first selection on my list of worst roommates ever was Sean, a very cocky Korean guy who assured me when he interviewed for the available room that he was a successful businessman with a number of businesses, one of which was the local Fosters Freeze. He stated that he needed to use my desktop computer in the den because his was at one of his offices and he was unable to access it on a regular basis. I agreed to let him use my computer, but I password protected all of my financial documents and other sensitive information.

In the mornings, Sean would come downstairs to the kitchen wearing a full business suit, and he would tell me about how busy the day ahead would be for him. Then I would leave for work, returning in the early evening to see Sean sitting on the sofa watching TV. The first hint that Sean was shady was when he asked me to please put his work van on my automobile insurance policy. He told me that the insurance rate was very high, and that by adding his vehicle onto my policy, the rates would drop for both our vehicles. He also promised to pay the entire premium. I firmly refused, even though he kept pleading with me to add his van, and he even insulted me, telling me that I was passing up an “excellent deal”.

During the time Sean was living in my house, we had a housekeeper who would clean every two weeks. One day, when she was finishing up her cleaning, she pulled me aside and said, “Miss Stacey, there’s something strange about Sean. When you are leaving for work, he is in a full business suit, but after you leave, he goes to his room, changes into a t-shirt and shorts, then goes down to the den and plays poker on your computer. He is still there when I am ready to leave. I just thought you should know.” My suspicions were ignited by this information, and I became very uncomfortable around him.

Ultimately, Sean just completely disappeared one day, and I couldn’t get in touch with him. So I ended up going to the Fosters Freeze since he had mentioned that he owned that business. I drove up and saw a Korean woman in the order window, so I figured she was Sean’s sister. I approached her and introduced myself, and then asked if she knew where Sean was, since I hadn’t seen him in close to a week. Her response was, “You’ve seen Sean? Come to the back entrance. We need to talk.”

Once I was at the back entrance, Sean’s sister proceeded to tell me that he was a gambling addict and had gotten into big trouble with a number of individuals who were after him for lost bets he never paid up on. She also told me that Sean had emptied out their parents’ savings accounts in a desperate effort to obtain more money, and what made that part of the story even worse was that she told me their father had cancer and was now unable to pay for chemotherapy treatments due to Sean’s theft. She told me to go into his room and just sell whatever might be of value, because she said he would never come back to the house. When I returned home, I went up to Sean’s room, where I found several pairs of crew socks and his bed. He had taken all of his Armani suits and other valuables and bolted.

Next week I will talk about another horrible roommate I had. It’s definitely been an adventure having roommates!

One Of My Worst Dating Experiences

Copyright: belchonock

If you’ve been in the dating world for any span of time, I am willing to bet that you have at least one story about a bad dating experience. There have been a few doozies in my dating life, but one in particular was particularly aggravating. I’ve gotten so many laughs from relaying the story about Max that I figured my subscribers would also get a chuckle out of it.

I met Max (and yes, that was his real name) at a Halloween party in 2009 at the Skirball Center on Sepulveda Blvd. While I was at the party, a very nondescript man who was not at all my type approached me, began talking to me, and followed me around. You guessed it, this was Max. He refused to leave my side, cockblocked a number of men who were my type, and just annoyed me to no end. When I decided to leave the party, he hounded me for my phone number, and for some utterly stupid reason, I gave it to him.

Max called me the next day, asking if I was free, to which I replied that I was watching Sunday NFL Football with my roommates. Without hesitation, Max invited himself over, and because I was so distracted by the activity in the house, I relented and gave him my address. When Max showed up at my place, he was empty handed, and promptly asked if we had beer or some other libation he could enjoy. I opened up a bottle of sake and poured two glasses. About 30 minutes after Max showed up, my two roommates stated that they were planning to put some burgers and chicken on the grill, and invited Max and me to join them in consuming the food. Once the food was cooked, the four of us sat in front of the TV, eating, drinking, and watching the game. A big smile broke on Max’s face, and he said, “Wow, this is awesome! I’m getting free food, free booze, and I’m watching football!” which made me cringe and also triggered concerned expressions on both my roommates’ faces.

Once the afternoon game was over, I told Max I had an early day the next day, and thanked him for coming over. Max stated that he would make it up to me the following week by taking me to dinner, to which I reluctantly agreed. Two days later, Max called me and we made plans to meet at a restaurant called Firefly in Studio City that Friday. For those of you who don’t know the restaurant, here is a portion of the current (2022) dinner menu:

Fried heritage chicken with mashed potatoes & gravy, horseradish slaw
and a damn fine buttermilk biscuit (or just as fine GF cornbread for the intolerant)   29 

Potato kugel with king trumpet mushrooms, roasted carrots, tofu creamed spinach and truffled demi   28
Red chile braised pork with crinkly sweet potatoes, collard greens, crispy mushrooms and pepita–cilantro salsa   30

 Zucchini, corn and poblano enchiladas verdes with black beans, romaine, pickled red onions and cashew crema   27

 Moqueca Baiana of rockfish, mussels and scallops with watercress–watermelon radish salad and jasmine rice   31

 Dijon crusted ocean trout filet with seared asparagus, quinoa–pine nut pilaf and sauce gribiche   33

 Baked mac ‘n cheese with cheddar, gruyere and parmesan bread crumbs   12

On Friday, Max and I met at the restaurant and were seated at a lovely al fresco table. The waiter brought menus and took our drink orders, which consisted of two similar mixed drinks on the rocks. Max perused the menu for several minutes, then looked over at me with a dissatisfied facial gesture. I asked him what was wrong, to which he replied, “I just don’t see anything that is grabbing me, ya know? I think I want to see if they can make a burger for me.” Since I wanted to be a good sport, I told him that if the chef was willing to accommodate his request, I would also have a burger. Well, Max got his wish, and we ordered burgers. We also ordered a second round of drinks.

The burgers were delicious, and our conversation flowed better than I thought it would, but since I felt no romantic spark with Max, I just wanted to get through the date without any awkwardness. Then the waiter placed the bill on the table while Max and I were talking about something that made us both laugh. While still laughing, Max picked up the bill, glanced at it, scowled, threw the bill onto the table, and remarked, “Oh, I can’t pay this!” I picked up the bill and saw that the total was $75, and because I wanted to be accommodating, I suggested that we split the bill, to which he agreed.

Two minutes later, Max scowled (this time at me), said “Wait a minute!”, and grabbed the bill. He studied it for a minute, then remarked, “The drink you ordered is $1 more than mine, and you had two of them, which means you owe $2 more than me.” I just sat there, dumbfounded. Was this guy really that cheap? I was so disgusted and so intent on getting out of that restaurant that I told him, “Don’t worry about it, I’ll pay the whole thing.” I proceeded to pay the entire bill plus tip, because Max didn’t even offer to leave the tip.

When we walked to the valet area to pick up our cars, Max said, “I’ll pay your valet fee if you let me come over” to which I replied, “No thank you, keep your $5.” Needless to say, there was no third date with Max, but he continued to call me, begging me to take him with me to Preview Night at the L.A. Auto Show. I had purchased two tickets (at $100 a pop), and mistakenly mentioned that I was going to the event and was waiting to hear back from a friend who said he wanted to join me. Max truly believed that I would have been willing to take him, on MY dime, to the event. I asked him to please stop calling me, and when he refused to leave me alone, I blocked his number.

I’d love to hear about your nightmare dating stories, so please share in the comments!

Saving Money While Living a Healthy Lifestyle

Image via Pexels

Karen Weeks does it again with another excellent article, this time tackling the subject of saving money while staying on track with healthy foods. Please be sure to check her out at Elderwellness.net

It’s important to think about how we can manage our spending and save money on healthy food and lifestyle as well. There are many ways we can cut down on the cost of eating healthy, from switching to a more affordable brand of canned food to making more nutritious meals at home.

Eat at Home

There’s no question that eating at home is a more affordable option than eating out. The convenience of being able to prepare and store a large portion of your food at home is one big benefit. 

You’re also likely to find a cheaper price on ingredients. You’ll also have more control over what you’re eating. Not only can you choose exactly what you want to eat, but you can also control portion sizes and food quality. 

Make Meal Prep a Priority

Many people think of meal planning as a way to save money. It is, but it’s also a lifestyle change that helps you save money on healthy food and lifestyle. Meal planning is a great way to cut down on the cost of healthy food

Plan Meals in Advance

Planning your meals in advance is a great way to reduce the cost of healthy food. It allows you to make certain meals at a certain time of the week that cost less. Planning in advance also helps you create healthy habits by making healthy eating a routine

Enjoy Lower Health Insurance Premiums

Health insurance premiums have risen significantly over the last decade. As people become more aware of the value of a healthy lifestyle, they are looking for ways to improve their health and lower their premiums

Healthy lifestyle habits, including eating a healthy diet and getting regular physical activity, can make a huge difference in your health. By leading a healthy lifestyle, you can help reduce your chances of developing health conditions, such as heart disease and cancer.

Take Advantage of Employee Wellness Programs

Healthy lifestyle habits can help you lower your healthcare costs and take advantage of employee wellness programs. Some companies offer wellness programs that encourage employees to adopt healthy habits, such as eating a healthy diet and getting regular exercise. 

How to Monetize Your Healthy Lifestyle

Healthy lifestyle habits can help you lower your healthcare costs and take advantage of employee wellness programs. In addition to the benefits of a healthy lifestyle, you can also monetize your healthy lifestyle. 

Start a Health Blog

Healthy lifestyle habits can help you monetize your healthy lifestyle. Many people are interested in healthy lifestyle blogs. This is especially true of younger people who are looking for ways to improve their health. 

If you have decided to start a health blog, you can monetize it quickly and easily. All you have to do is create a free WordPress website, add a blog feed, and start blogging. You can also monetize your health blog with an affiliate program. 

Open a Store Selling Sports Gear

Healthy lifestyle habits can help you monetize your healthy lifestyle and take advantage of employee wellness programs. If you are interested in starting a business that sells sports gear, healthy lifestyle habits can help you monetize your healthy lifestyle and make a profit.

In starting your own business, be sure to use a logo maker to create an attractive and attention-grabbing branded logo for your products. Creating an eye-catching logo for your brand is simple if you take advantage of a free logo design tool. The right tool offers great templates that you can then customize to make sure it beautifully represents your brand.

Are White Foods Making You Sick?

Copyright: colorcocktail

If you have any tendency to hit the bread basket at dinner, or you have a penchant for plates of regular pasta or sweet treats like cookies, you are consuming white foods which can have a deleterious impact on your health. Some white foods are actually quite healthy for the most part, such as eggs, cauliflower, onions and turnips. However, white foods which are highly processed and refined wreak havoc on our bodies, and should be eliminated from our diets. Not only do they adversely affect digestion, they cause spikes in blood sugar, diminish the collagen and elastin in our skin, and lead to heart and kidney disease.

Not sure what constitutes the white foods I am referring to? Here’s a list:

Enriched White Flour
White Rice
White Pasta
White Bread
Crackers
Table Sugar
Refined Salt

One of the reasons why the flour which is used in processed foods is usually enriched is because fiber, vitamins and minerals are stripped during the refining process of the grain. In addition, processed grains and table sugar are absorbed very rapidly, causing a sharp increase in insulin release with a corresponding crash, resulting in hunger pangs and cravings, not to mention adversely affecting one’s health over the course of time. In case you didn’t know, the average carbonated soda has 10 to 12 teaspoons of table sugar. According to the American Heart Association, an average of 22 teaspoons of sugar is consumed daily by the average American. Sugar in any form provides very few nutrients, and that is why it is described as providing “empty” calories.

Another white food which could be added to the do-not-eat list is dairy. The dairy industry often uses hormones and antibiotics in raising the cows, which then can cause weight gain, hormonal imbalance, inflammation, allergies and digestive issues in humans. I have seen a fair number of patients who dealt with chronic pain and inflammation which abated once they eliminated dairy products from their diets.

I honestly believe that everyone should examine all foods which are currently in the pantry or elsewhere in the kitchen, disposing of any processed foods. Once this purge is completed, it is critical to read nutrition labels when shopping at the grocery store and to avoid purchasing foods which have ingredients on the above list. I discovered that I have a severe intolerance to barley and I also have a non-celiac gluten sensitivity. Because of this, I have cut gluten out of my diet, which means that I avoid bread, crackers, and pasta which are made with wheat flour or any other glutinous grain. However, this doesn’t mean that gluten free bread products are the answer either, especially because they are also processed foods. I only consume gluten free pastas, breads or cookies a few times per year, and I truly have cravings for healthy foods. For example, when I want a crunchy snack, I opt for a bowl of raw veggies like radishes (my favorite), cucumber, and fresh raw mushrooms, while others might reach for a bag of potato chips. My palate is so conditioned to like clean foods that I actually crave things like radishes, arugula, and lean cuts of turkey and seafood.

If you stick to fresh vegetables, lean meat, and incorporate healthy fats like avocado into your regimen, the fresh flavors will hopefully break you out of your refined food habits and lead you to healthy eating habits.