Health in a Minute: New Year 2021

For the Whole Family

 

Removing Stains 101

Whether you’ve had a cooking catastrophe or you’re just a messy muse, the clothes we wear can take a beating. But this doesn’t mean you have to toss them out when slips and spills happen! Read on for how to combat stains using a variety of methods. 

Water: You can’t do any harm here. While it might not work on stubborn stains, it can always be a first line of defense. Just rinse, blot, and repeat.

Vinegar: Natural and effective, vinegar is great on wool or synthetics, but spot testing is advised.

Bleach: While this substance may be a harsh product to use, it’s pretty hard to beat its effectiveness when it comes to keeping whites looking like new.

Dish Soap: When mixed with water, dish soap is helpful for getting out a variety of things, but especially grease or condiments. 

Acetone: While harsh on synthetic materials, acetone can work extremely well when removing paint stains. 

Rubbing Alcohol: Rubbing alcohol is especially tough on any chemical-based stains, as well as inks and dyes. 

Detergent: A great catch-all, if other methods fail, regular detergent or stain remover will often do the trick when scrubbed before laundering. 

Hydrogen Peroxide: When it comes to getting out rust or blood stains, hydrogen peroxide is king. 

 

 

red and blue house illustrations

 

Coping with Cabin Fever

Getting cabin fever, which is essentially feelings of isolation or confinement, is normal from time to time. With the winter season and current pandemic upon us, you may be experiencing these emotions more frequently than usual. Cabin fever can easily result in irritability, decreased motivation, food cravings, lethargy, and a slew of other negative feelings, but the good news is there are ways to cope. 

For starters, try getting out of the house. Daylight helps regulate the body’s natural cycles, and if you are able to exercise, your body will release endorphins. Even a quick walk can make all the difference, but if you must stay inside, try positioning yourself near a window or tuning in to an at-home workout video.

Try to avoid TV or anything that is relatively mindless, and instead participate in activities that are engaging for your brain such as reading, putting together a puzzle, or playing a game. It may also help to set daily or weekly goals for yourself that are reasonable and achievable. Reward yourself when completing these tasks. 

And it’s no secret the effects your diet can play on your mood. Try to maintain normal eating habits, stay hydrated, and limit high-sugar, high-fat foods.

 

 

For the Home

 

illustration of woman sitting in her home office with her cat

 

Establishing Efficiency

How to Curate the Perfect Home Office Setup

People are working from home now more than ever, and if you have struggled to recreate your office environment at home, you’re not alone. Try these quick tips to refresh your existing space into an area primed for productivity. 

  •    Invest in a comfortable office chair.
  •    Use a second monitor.
  •    Consider a standing desk.
  •    Purchase a quality mouse and keyboard.
  •    Follow ergonomic guidelines.
  •    Add plants and flowers to your setup.
  •    Manage wires.
  •    Make sure you have solid high-speed internet. 
  •    Incorporate natural light.
  •    Maintain a brainstorming space.
  •    Add décor for a little personality.
  •    Clean your home office regularly.
  •    Use a separate computer for work.
  •    Separate work and living spaces. 
  •    Have office hours.
  •    Lay down ground rules with your family members. 

 

 

For Moms

child painting with water colors

7 Types of Extracurriculars for Children  

As children grow, it becomes necessary for them to explore different clubs and organizations, which offer experiences that will help them make friends, gain new skills, and oftentimes, determine their trajectory for years to come. 

  1. Sports: From football and soccer to cheerleading and softball, sports are certainly a great way to keep kids physically active and build self-esteem.  
  2. Volunteering: Even the youngest children can get something out of volunteering. Kiwanis organizations are a good place to start and can help build skills such as leadership and communication.
  3. Scouting: Boy or Girl Scouts can start your child on the path to becoming a well-rounded adult. These groups provide kids with the chance to learn new skills and create friendships. 
  4. Academic: Not only do academic clubs give children the opportunity to grow and learn, they can also help them explore areas of interest that may shape their future.
  5. Music & Arts: Unleash your child’s creative side by exposing them to the arts. From dance to singing and painting, this could be the outlet they need to express themselves. 
  6. Agricultural: Clubs such as 4-H are perfect for kids that are interested in plant and animal sciences. Here, they will gain knowledge while making new friends. 
  7. Religious: Help your child learn more about their faith in religious clubs. These can be social or educational, and many of them include invaluable community service opportunities.

 

illustration of cars in a parking lot

 

Avoiding Parking Lot Peril

Did you know that 50,000 crashes happen in parking lots and garages each year? On top of risks such as potholes, debris, poor lighting, or slippery conditions, there are also distracted drivers constantly coming and going. Add to the mix a child, and parking lots can seem loaded with danger. Follow these guidelines to keep your children safe.

Establish Rules. Lay down ground rules for your child. These can be anything from never playing around parked cars, holding onto your hand or the cart, and only walking – not running – in parking lots.

Reward Good Behavior. Offer up plenty of praise when you see your child practicing safety measures, and consider keeping a sticker chart in the car for immediate gratification.

But Also Give Consequences for Misbehavior. Let your child know if they do something unsafe, and go back to the car for a brief time-out if necessary.

Practice. If your child’s behavior has become a serious safety concern, take some practice trips where you don’t need to carry anything to or from the car. Use a parking lot that isn’t overcrowded, and review the rules before getting out of the car.

Be a Role Model. Pay close attention when walking to and from the car, and avoid texting or talking on the phone in order to set a good example. 

 

 

For Him

bag of golf clubs

Finding Fitness Through Sports

Whether you crave competition or are just looking for a break from your regular gym routine, sports can do wonders at helping you achieve and maintain your fitness goals. While there are plenty of activities that can challenge your body, here are some that are great for overall fitness and a range of skill levels.

Squash or Racquetball: A game of squash or racquetball is a great full-body workout. These sports target your back, shoulders, arms, chest, quads, glutes, hamstrings, and core and also test endurance, speed, balance, and agility.

Cycling: Cycling is a great aerobic workout and one that also strengthens quads, glutes, and hamstrings. Riders can choose between roads or trails, how fast they go, and how many hills they climb for a tailored workout every time. 

Golf: Golf lovers rejoice! It turns out your favorite pastime just might help you burn upwards of 1,000 calories. Walking an 18-hole course while pushing or carrying clubs is sure to get your heart rate up. 

Water Sports: Whether you prefer kayaking, rowing, canoeing, or paddleboarding, water sports are great for fitness. With a focus on arms and core, they are sure to boost your muscle strength and endurance.

Swimming: Easy on the joints, swimming requires your lower and upper body to work together, making it a great alternative to hitting the gym. Strength and endurance are the name of the game here. 

 

illustration of acid reflux or heartburn

Stop the Burn

5 Tips for Avoiding Acid Reflux 

If you’ve ever experienced acid reflux, you’re not alone. While you may think your body is doomed to constantly experience heartburn, a sore throat, or hoarseness, there are some actions you can take to alleviate the symptoms.

  1. Eat slow and sparingly. The fuller your stomach is, the more likely you are to have reflux. Try eating more frequent, smaller meals throughout the day instead of several larger ones.
  2. Sleep on an incline. Explore sleeping with your head 6-8 inches above your feet. A foam wedge or bed riser should give you the lift you need to keep acid where it belongs.
  3. Avoid certain foods. Mint, tomatoes, onions, garlic, coffee, tea, chocolate, alcohol, and anything spicy or carbonated has been known to contribute to acid reflux. Try eliminating these foods and adding them back to your diet one by one.
  4. Stay up after eating. Sitting or standing after eating a meal will allow gravity to keep acid in your stomach. A good rule of thumb is to wait three hours after mealtime before lying down. 
  5. Don’t move too fast. Also try to avoid vigorous exercise for several hours after eating, and aim to keep your activities to a leisurely stroll.

 

 

For Her

Houseplants in a row

Top Low-Maintenance House Plants to Help You Beat the Winter Blues

The holidays may be over, but the winter season is still in full force. If you’re looking for a little pick-me-up, why not try adding a new house plant to your space? These options are sure to provide a daily dose of beauty and are winter-approved. Whether you sometimes forget to water them, have little natural sunlight, or keep your heat running on high, these plants have what it takes to survive. 

GREAT FOR HIGH OR DRY HEAT

  • ZZ Plant
  • Moth Orchid
  • Ponytail Palm
  • Succulents
  • Aloe
  • Cacti and Desert Plants
  • Wax Plant

GREAT FOR LOW LIGHT 

  • Chinese Evergreen
  • ZZ Plant
  • Snake Plant
  • Maidenhair Fern
  • Clivia

GREAT FOR INFREQUENT OR INCONSISTENT WATERING

  • Chinese Evergreen
  • ZZ Plant
  • Moth Orchid
  • Snake Plant
  • Ponytail Palm
  • Clivia
  • Jade Plant
  • Christmas Cactus
  • Philodendrons
  • Succulents
  • Fiddle Leaf Fig
  • Aloe
  • Cacti and Desert Plants
  • Wax Plant

 

green gradient spiral

 

Defining Dizziness

There is a myriad of reasons one may experience dizziness, but not all dizzy spells are created equal. In general, there are two types of dizziness, and knowing which one you are experiencing is the first step to determining its cause. 

The most common type, lightheadedness, is when individuals feel faint, woozy, or weak. This feeling may be accompanied by tunnel vision, sweating, buzzing in the ears, or nausea, and if a person fights the urge to sit or lie down, they very well could pass out. 

Lightheadedness can be caused by everything from dehydration and blood loss to stress and cardiac conditions, and it’s common to momentarily feel dizzy when standing up quickly. This sudden drop in blood pressure is nothing to worry about, but for more frequent or longer episodes, consult a doctor. 

The other type of dizziness is vertigo, or the sensation that your surroundings are moving around you. This feeling of the room spinning is sometimes accompanied by nausea or vomiting, double vision, and numbness or tingling. It can be related to ear infections, multiple sclerosis, stroke, and a variety of neurological problems, so seeing a doctor when you experience this type of dizziness is advised.