Sunday, 26 February 2012

Plants indoor

I have always wanted some plants inside the house but I live a somewhat busy and laidback lifestyle that I don't like a lot of maintenance around the house. But for those who wants some, here are some tips for bodyandsoul.com.au.
For the home

Experts recommend the hardy, low-light tolerant peace lilly for your lounge room or hallway.

"If the peace lillies are dying in your home then you shouldn't be in there either!" says building biologist Nicole Bijlsma. "It's a hard plant to kill – it just needs a little bit of water regularly. It's a hardy plant that doesn't require much but gives so much in return."

Horticulturalist Rebecca Mugridge says its lush deep green leaves make the peace lilly soothing to look at and its beautiful white flowers project a tropical oasis feel. "They can take reasonably low light levels and the soft foliage is not likely to spike anyone."

For the kitchen

Bring your kitchen garden indoors to neutralise odours and purify the air. Mugridge recommends a small pot of mint on a well-lit windowsill.

"Mint has been used for many, many years to neutralise odours. There are so many delicious mints easily available now too, even chocolate. You need to trim the plant regularly and if the light isn't quite strong enough have another two plants outside that you can rotate weekly."


I do have some plants at our backdoor entry - good luck plants, just incase and I might be able to buy gold coins at Golden Eagle. I'd want some on the front door but I haven't gotten around to it.
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Caffiene and Kids

While many mums and dads are actively not allowing their kids to drink strong coffee, many Aussie adolescents, and children even younger, are getting a regular caffeine fix. And that's not a good thing.

With more and more links being drawn between caffeine and addiction, sleeping problems, obesity and poor bone health, many youth health professionals are reiterating the fact that there is no reason for caffeine being in a child's diet.
Caffeine sources

The main sources of caffeine are tea, coffee, cola drinks and, increasingly, energy drinks. Australian research from 10 years ago found that 27 per cent of boys aged eight to 12 had consumed an energy drink in the two weeks before the survey.

Back then, these sugary pick-me-ups were new to the market. Today, they are everywhere.

More recent research, albeit from the caffeine-loving US, found that 75 per cent of kids aged five to 12 consumed caffeine daily, from an average of three cans of fizzy drink a day.

What these fizzy and energy drinks are doing, say these studies, is creating an unhealthy lifelong caffeine habit.

An ongoing study from the University at Buffalo found kids who drank more than the recommended amount of caffeinated drinks had an increased likelihood of poor diets, which included lots of junk food.


It's really easy for kids to get hooked to caffiene. There are so many sources that kids have access. It's really up to the parents to control or guide their kids around drinks. I understand why some kids get addicted to this substance because they are available at home and you can't blame the parents for it because hey, one should not give up this little pleasure just because you have kids. It's all about discipline and balance. Plus, when the kids get a bit older they can get mcdonalds jobs and access to coffee anyway. But I reckon, education is the best way to help our children.

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Sunday, 12 February 2012

That Yummy Sausages

We eat sausages at least every week. We know that it's not really good for our health because of all the preservatives but what can I say? For one, it is easy to cook. Then, they're family favourites - yummy and can be eaten with anything.

But how much is too much? According to this article:

How much is too much?How much is too much?

So is there a safe amount of processed meat we can eat?

"Eating 50 grams once a week is probably okay. Eat it daily and you're setting yourself up for trouble," says Dr Alan Barclay, a spokesman for the Dietitians Association of Australia.

"A similar study conducted last year found a link between red and processed meats and an 18 per cent increased risk of colorectal cancer, so there is some very strong evidence." Barclay says fruit and vegies have protective factors against cancer and suggests adding lots of salad to your ham sandwich, or eating good-quality sausages with lots of vegies.

However, the best option may be to avoid these foods altogether, Barclay says.

"Cook a roast and slice up the leftovers for sandwiches. You don't have to buy cured processed meats. You're just better off not risking it."

Pancreatic cancer is one of the most lethal forms of cancer, with less than five per cent of patients living beyond five years.


What is 50 grams of processed meat?
•One sausage
•Two medium slices of ham
•One hotdog or frankfurter
•Two medium rashers of bacon
•A 1cm thick slice of salami
•Two slices of luncheon meat


At least we don't have it everyday - as scare as log furniture in this house. This week no sausages for us.

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Aging

Up til recently, I have not considered myself as old or aging yet. I still feel the same, emotionally and mentally but physically, I have felt something different in my body but I attribute it to the amount of work I do or should I say my responsibility compared to when I was single. I have not really thought that physically I am aging.

But reading this from bodyandsoul.com.au, makes me hmmmm. My body is getting old.
Joints and back: If you're 30 to 50

What's normal: Occasional neck or back ache on waking; back stiffness after driving for more than two hours; some aching in the legs after walking for 30 minutes to an hour; needing to move around after an hour of sitting on a hard chair.

What's not: Intense pain in one or more joints after carrying shopping; difficulty or discomfort getting into a low car or out of a seat.

"Having any one of these symptoms is a sign your joints or back are suffering early signs of degenerative change," says Tim Allardyce of the British Osteopathic Association. "This may be through injury or a sedentary lifestyle. Poor posture is a contributing factor."

Memory: If you're 30 to 50

What's normal: Forgetting people's names; mislaying keys, phone or wallet.

What's not: Problems negotiating familiar places (such as regularly not being able to find your car in the car park); difficulty recognising faces, colours, shapes and words; finding you've left objects in the wrong place.

Fitness: If you're 30 to 50

What's normal: You are slightly breathless after walking up three flights of stairs.

What's not: Struggling for breath after three flights of stairs or needing to stop to complete it; headaches or dizziness. From middle age, heart muscle shrinks by an average of 0.3 grams per year. This can lead to high blood pressure and increasing breathlessness.


So far, I only feel some back pain when I wake up in the morning and after work - something to do with sitting all day infront of the computer. Nothing yet when bending on undermount stainless sinks. So, I'd say I'm getting there slowly. :)

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Clean Living

IF you want to reduce your household costs and greenhouse gas emissions, the key is retrofitting.
But what does this mean and how does it help?

Derek Wrigley, the author of Making Your Home Sustainable, explains:

Q: WHAT IS RETROFITTING?

A: It is a way of modifying an existing house to take advantage of the abundant natural energy which is all around us but insufficiently recognised by homeowners and, unfortunately, most builders.

A retrofitted house can produce very significant and worthwhile savings in annual running costs.
Read more: http://www.news.com.au/money/cost-of-living/cut-emissions-with-home-retrofitting/story-fnagkbpv-1226266804382#ixzz1m7L1apxP


I know that retrofitting a house costs money but in the long, the saving will offset the cost. While writing this, I am making an inventory of the energy/water saving equipment we have at home. We have dual flush cistern. Our water heating system is the modern energy saving one despite it not being solar powered. Also, we have low-flow shower heads or shall I say, adjustable shower heads.

There are many ways on how to fit the house to save energy. Personally, one can live green - one which is to buy things that last like aluminum briefcase, quality clothes, etc.
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