Have you ever found yourself in a situation in which you want to chill a bottle of wine fast? I found out a couple of years ago about a great hack which involves paper towels and works like a dream, and I have been using it frequently ever since. The paper towel hack is definitely better than an ice bucket, which doesn’t always chill the entire contents of the bottle.
Simply take a couple of paper towels and run them under cold water until they are soaked. Wring out the excess water and wrap the bottle with the wet paper towels, then place the bottle in the freezer for about fifteen minutes. After 15 minutes, the bottle will be nicely chilled. The science behind this nifty hack is that the surface area of the wet paper towel rapidly cools the bottle it is wrapped around through water evaporation.
A second very cool (pun intended) wine chilling hack involves grapes, but this only works on individual glasses of wine. What you do is drop 4 or 5 frozen grapes into a glass of wine. This method chills the liquid dramatically in only a few minutes. This is such a neat method that I am planning to buy a bunch of grapes to have on hand in my freezer at all times.
I have always considered my mother’s lack of understanding of anything electronic rather interesting, especially since I don’t struggle with operating basic electronic devices such as TV’s, stereos and cell phones. I know that older generations (my mother was born in 1932) tend to have difficulties operating electronic equipment, but my mother is at an extreme. It surprised me when my mother requested a VCR back in the 80’s, because I assumed that using it would present a challenge for her. So I gave her one for Christmas, despite the fact that I doubted she would feel comfortable using it. She proved me right by immediately revealing to me that she did not comprehend the different control buttons, which then prompted me to patiently run through every function with her. When I would say, “Okay Mom, how about if you try to play a videotape?”, she would become frustrated and state that it was just too confusing to her.
The next thing I did was to write out detailed and numbered operation instructions on a large Post-It note which I then affixed to the top of the VCR. A week went by, and then I came over for a visit, during which I asked my mother how she was enjoying the VCR. She stated that she had not used it, that it was “too confusing” for her, and that she would just wait until I came over so that I could operate the VCR and we could watch movies together. My mom held onto that VCR for 20 years, and she never once used it on her own.
Shortly after my mother entered an assisted living facility in 2013, I was trying to figure out what type of phone to get her, and thought it would be cheaper and more convenient for her if I purchased a pre-paid cell phone as opposed to installing a land line in her room. After purchasing her first cell phone (two have stopped working over the years, and she is on her third phone), I braced myself for the cell phone training which I knew I had to put my mom through. Just as I had predicted, she had problems from day one with basic operations on the phone, and as a consequence, rarely, if ever, answers incoming calls or makes outbound calls.
Has anyone else dealt with elderly people who don’t seem to have any aptitude for electronic devices?
I don’t know about you, but I can’t stand the mold and mildew which forms on the caulk in my bathtub after a few months. I went for many years trying to clean the stains, but could never find a foolproof and easy way to completely remove them. Finally, I stumbled on a cleaning hack when I was in the midst of a cleaning frenzy which hit me shortly after the world went into lockdown due to COVID. This method is easy, inexpensive, and works like a charm. I have also included several other cleaning methods, but I honestly think that the method I am featuring is superior to the others.
Using gloves to protect my skin, I soak long strips of Graham Cellucotton Beauty Coil 100% Rayon in regular household bleach, then place the strips over the stained caulk. I allow the strips to sit on the caulk overnight, then remove them the next morning. The caulk is always perfectly white, as if I had laid new caulk on the tub.
As an alternative, you can use a bleach pen, but it’s a more expensive method. Other methods include applying distilled white vinegar with a toothbrush and scrubbing the caulk until the stains lift, but you have to use some elbow grease. You could also use equal parts of water and baking soda to make a paste, then scrub with that mixture. Lastly, you could dilute a tablespoon of oxygen bleach in a pint of water and either spray it onto the caulk with a spray bottle, or use the solution to scrub the stains off with a toothbrush.
Check out my video featuring Beaucarnea recurvata, more commonly known as Ponytail Palm!
Sadly, this plant took a turn for the worse in August of 2021 (right after we had no central A/C for three weeks in July), so I banished it to my balcony, where it continued to decline. I had no choice but to dispose of it in early October of 2021. However, even though my ponytail palm didn’t fare well, I still think it’s a cool plant to have, and it is relatively easy to care for. Mine just didn’t like the sweltering heat!
Image courtesy of Unsplash
By Karen Weeks
According to MarketWatch, there are over 47 million seniors in the United States, comprising approximately 14.9% of the U.S. population. Unfortunately, the majority of these people have at least one chronic health condition. On the upside, advances in technology have made it easier to manage these conditions and connect seniors with helpful resources and make sure they have access to broadband internet. Here, Dr. Stacey Naito’s Blog describes some of the latest products, gadgets, and apps that can make staying healthy easier as you grow older.
At any age, it can be difficult to remember to take medication. This is particularly true if you have more than one prescription that you take daily. If you have trouble remembering to take your medicine, you might want to consider a medication reminder like Medisafe Medication Management.
This is a free app available for both Apple and Android, and while it can jog your memory to take your pills on time, the app also does more than that. Medisafe checks for drug interactions, connects you with coupons and even reminds you when it’s time to request a refill.
Fitness trackers motivate you to move
Fitness trackers like FitBit and Garmin Venu are nothing new. The first Fitbit was released in 2009. At the time it was barely more than a steps tracker, but they have come a long way since then. Today, in addition to counting your steps, most fitness trackers and smartwatches detect your heartbeat, track your sleep, record your weight, and help you set health-related goals. These tools are a great way to not only make sure you stay active but also monitor changes in your health.
Fall detectors give you peace of mind
As you age, your risk of developing osteoporosis increases. In fact, the National Osteoporosis Foundation explains 54 million Americans have low bone density or osteoporosis. Osteoporosis increases the risk of broken bones which can easily lead to a fall. Falls are serious and can lead to even more serious injuries. Falls are a serious threat to anyone, and sometimes seniors can suffer from balance issues. It’s easy to see how this can become the perfect storm for an older adult.
For those who are at risk, technology has answers in the way of fall detectors. For instance, the Lifeline fall detector can detect a fall and connect you to a central communication center. If they determine you need assistance they can call for help.
There are many other devices that can help in the event of a fall. In fact, the latest version of the Apple Watch comes equipped with fall detection. In the event of a fall, the watch will call for help and send a message with your location to your emergency contacts.
There’s nothing quite like getting away for a short vacation or staycation to get a change of scenery. Better yet, booking a quick getaway in a vacation rental offers benefits like free wi-fi and having a fully equipped kitchen so you can cook healthy meals. Many rentals also have home gyms so you can get in a workout or two during your stay. Using a service like TurnKey is a premium choice, as you get your pick of distinctive homes, 24/7 on-call service, and other perks.
Online access to insurance helps you get the care you need
Each year, the open enrollment window for Medicare is October 15 to December 7. During this time you can choose the plan that’s right for you. The best way to get started is to visit medicare.gov. Here you can find information on how to sign up and examine your available options.
Since plans like Medicare Advantage offer things like dental and vision care, many seniors find they save money on out-of-pocket expenses by making changes in coverage. With that in mind, do some exploring to make sure you’re getting the best bang for your buck.
Your health is important, but staying on top of it doesn’t have to be complicated. With technology, it’s easy to track your health and stay active. And the best part is, many of these services are easy to use and inexpensive or free.
Copyright: yarruta / 123RF Stock Photo
Despite the fact that I was trained in the traditional ways of medicine, I prefer to utilize natural supplements and foods to treat conditions, only turning to prescription medications as a last resort for my patients. I have a particular aversion to prescribing antidepressant medications, and honestly believe that such meds only serve as a bandage for the root cause, which almost invariably is a combination of hormonal imbalance and malnutrition.
If you are experiencing new symptoms of depression, the first thing you should do is visit your primary care provider and have bloodwork drawn. Issues such as thyroid dysfunction, low progesterone, and low testosterone can often pop up in an individual who is experiencing depression. Make sure to also ask your provider to check vitamin D3 levels, since that substance actually acts like a hormone in the body. Other blood values which can be tested include DHEA, IGF-1, and estradiol.
When a patient comes to me complaining of symptoms of depression, I always recommend the following three supplements as part of the patient’s daily regimen:
Folate 800 mcg
Once my patients are on this daily regimen for a few weeks, I have them visit for a follow-up to see if their symptoms have improved. If the improvement is marginal, I add SAMe and 5-HTP to the regimen, both of which are great for treating pain issues. If anything is off balance with respect to a patient’s hormones (and in most cases, something is), I will treat the imbalance directly with organ support compounds and bioidentical hormone replacement therapy.
In addition to natural supplements, I also recommend that patients consume whole foods, and avoid processed foods at all costs. If possible, I also urge them to engage in regular exercise, as such activity can have an immense positive impact on mood. I encourage people to find balance in their daily lives, and will often demonstrate breathing exercises or discuss meditation with them while they are in the office. I also remind them to stop and enjoy what they have in their lives, to be grateful for what they have instead of dwelling on what they lack.
Rather than turn to SSRI’s, please consider the natural approach first if you are dealing with depression!
It seems like lots of ladies are opting to have their nails professionally done these days, and there are now an assortment of different nail shapes which one can choose. The six most popular nail shapes are shown in the above image, with Oval, Round, and Squoval nail shapes best suited for imparting the most natural look. You ca even create an optical illusion with your nail shape, so that if you have narrow, long fingers and want them to look more substantial, you can opt for the Squoval (or even Square, which has sharper angles) silhouette. Those with short or wide fingers who are willing to have a bit of length to their nails will find the Oval shape more flattering and slimming.
Depending on how long your nails are, and whether you have natural or acrylic nails, you could adopt any nail shape and make them look elegant, especially if your nails are professionally shaped. An example is the Square nail shape featured in the image below. You can see that the model’s fingers are long and slender, so she can carry the more severe square shape and have nails which look feminine and pretty.
Square Nail Shape:
Oval Nail Shape:
Oval nails are flattering on just about any hand shape, and the shape is durable as well.
Ballerina/Coffin Nail Shape:
I used to have Ballerina shaped nails for a number of years, and I just got tired of the shape, so I switched to Almond. Ballerina, or Coffin, shaped nails, have side edges which are tapered, so the shape can have a nice slenderizing effect on small, short fingers. However, partially due to the fact that I had a horrible nail technician whose work would chip, peel, lift and break constantly, I had to go to her for frequent repairs. I found that the sharp edges of the coffin shape would crack and chip off, despite being very careful with them. So unless you are getting your nails done by a skilled nail technician, I would opt against this shape, based on my previous experience.
Almond Nail Shape:
I finally changed to the Almond nail shape back in November, after my previous nail technician disappeared without a trace. I can honestly say that the Almond shape is fantastic, versatile, strong, feminine and flattering to my small hands. My only regret is having waited as long as I did to change to this shape, but I never trusted my previous nail technician to do a skillful job with a new nail shape. You can see in the image below how flattering the Almond nail shape is for a woman’s hands.
Stiletto Nail Shape:
I honestly have never seen anyone sport the Stiletto nail shape except celebrities and 19 year old strippers. The Stiletto shape is very severe, with nails which come to a very sharp point, so I can’t imagine someone getting Stiletto nails unless that person had a team of assistants who did everything, presumably possibly even performing wiping duty during a celebrity’s bathroom visits (I presume a bidet would be a good investment for someone who has stiletto nails). To be honest, I wouldn’t even want to try Stiletto nails, even for a few minutes, because they are incredibly impractical and ridiculous.
Mountain Peak Nail Shape:
There is a variation of Stiletto called Mountain Peak, which is a shorter version, featuring a sharp point at the tip of the nail. While it is far less treacherous than the Stiletto shape, it still evokes a feeling of vampires and haunted castles. Simply by virtue of the sharp, pointed edge of Mountain Peak, it also lacks the versatility and practicality of other, more moderate nail shapes. However, I think it could work for some women as long as leggings and tights aren’t essential elements to their wardrobe, or they don’t care if they rip into every delicate fabric they touch. I can’t imagine this shape working with nitrile gloves, which are an essential part of my life as a physician.
This is crazy to me! I was bored one afternoon and decided to type in “hottest female doctors” in the Google search field. I had done this in the past and was stunned when I saw more than one article which mentioned me. I once again stumbled upon another article which was published in 2016, and which is a highlighted “People Also Ask” question on Google: “who is the hottest female doctor in the world:?”. I honestly thought I might see a venerated female colleague as a response to that question, but instead, I saw that there was an article on me!
I have gotten a LOT of criticism for being forthright in my determination to show off the labors of my hard work in the gym. My determination comes from being a “practice what I preach” type of person, and not from wanting to be in any type of spotlight. So before the haters emerge and decide to blast me, keep in mind where I am coming from.
If you want a good laugh, click on the link below to see Matthew Inman’s comic which depicts the life cycle of a chicken. Hilarious!