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It’s shocking that something as simple as sleep still troubles a lot of people. I’ve struggled with lack of sleep for many years and with it, came various health problems. For instance, I started gaining weight, and doctor’s even told me that I stood at risk of getting stroke or heart attacks.

Luckily, I came across some interesting trymattress.com – side sleepers reviews and learned that first, I had to change my sleep position. It went on to add that your sleeping posture plays a huge role in causing heartburn, snoring and also wrinkles! So, I tried a couple of sleep positions and here are my views on each.

Sleeping On Your Back

I’ve always hated sleeping on my back. It makes me feel like a person laying in a coffin or hospital. But, I had to ignore such personal feelings and give it a try. Well, I loved the way it kept my spine straight and in excellent support. However, I found breathing difficult especially when sleeping on a pillow as it doesn’t hold your neck in its neutral position.

My kids kept on telling me that I was growing old because of the increasing number of wrinkles. Of course, I also believed age was catching up with me, but when I stopped pressing my face against the pillow, things started to change.

But back sleeping also has its dark side. For instance, your snoring increases. In fact, this posture is even associated with cases of sleep apnea. Doctors prescribe sleeping on your side when hit by such awful sleep conditions.

Sleeping On One Side!

Unfortunately, although I was enjoying back sleeping, my snoring became too much, and I had to look for an alternative. So, I decided to try side sleeping and realized why it’s the most popular sleep position. You can curl up when it gets cold or sleep straight to relax tight muscles.

Medical experts even recommend it for pregnant mothers. However, they specify sleeping on the left side. They say that it helps in improving the rate of blood circulation to and from the heart. It keeps the mom and baby comfortable during the night. This is better than sleeping on your back as it doesn’t put pressure on your lower spine, cause acid reflux or heartburn.

Sadly though, by sleeping on one side, I was putting more pressure on my lungs and stomach. So, I kept tossing and turning just to relieve stress from these areas. Also, most mornings I woke up with a numb arm. I later learned that by sleeping with one arm behind my head, I put more pressure on its muscles and nerves. Most importantly, it restricted blood flow resulting in a ‘rubber arm.’

How About Sleeping On Your Stomach?

Previously, this was my best sleep position. After using it for almost all my life, I felt like it’s all I needed. However, it not only prevents snoring but also, in some cases, reduces sleep apnea. But that’s all you can expect from it. It’s also the worst sleep position because of things such as:

  • Flattens the standard curve of your spine causing aches and pains in your lower back.
  • Sleeping throughout the night with your head turned puts unwanted pressure on your neck.

At the time, I found it hard to change to another position. So, I decided to add some pillows to slowly train my body to sleep on at least one side. I stuck a pad under my hips just to elevate the lower part of the body.

My Take

Interestingly, studies show that people wake up on the side which their body enjoys. So, unless your doctor advises you otherwise, it’s better to follow what feels right. Eventually, I settled on side sleeping because it puts me to sleep immediately, and I wake up feeling refreshed and energetic. Although it causes a few muscle strains on your arm, it compensates for this by relaxing all other muscles, and with time, you’ll learn how to position your arm correctly.

Despite the different health benefits, people choose to sleep in one position if they feel it’s comfortable. Remember that you’re the only one who can take control of your sleep. Therefore, if you’re not sure what suits you, you could always follow my lead and start experimenting with each one. Who knows? It might be just what you need!

The Best and (Worst) Positions to Sleep In

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Your twenties are a special time in your life where you straddle the line between being a youth and an adult.  Amidst the whirlwind of the decisions, experiences, excitement, and confusion that encapsulate your twenties, it can be easy to forget some important principles.

It Is Ok Not To Have Everything Figured Out (Nobody Does)

There is a pressure in your twenties to have your life figured out.  This pressure could be coming from your parents, societal expectations, or most of the time. . . yourself.  Whether it be your career or your personal life, it is ok to not have everything figured out in the midst of your twenties.  Your twenties are a time to figure it out.  It is a time to see what kind of career you want to pursue and what kind of person you want to be.  Social media is one of the culprits of misleading people to believe that their lives are subpar and somehow behind of everyone else's, but this is simply not true.  Most of the time, the people you think have everything figured out feel the same way you do and feel inadequate because of someone else's social media output.  So, moral of the story, it is ok.  Take your time.  You, along with everyone else, will figure life out along the way.

Quality Over Quantity

From elementary to high school, the importance of friendship lay more in quantity than in quality.  This could be due to social status, maturity, or other reasons, but you will find that when you get older, you will start to crave deeper connections with fewer people rather than shallower connections with more people.  Remember that it is more rewarding to have a fewer friends who truly know and care for you well than an exponential amount of “friends” who do not really know you at all.

Invest Your Time Wisely

One thing you can never get back is time.  Learning to invest time wisely is one of the hardest lessons to learn, but it is essential.  Think about your end goals and the things that really matter.  Once you have your goals and your values, invest your time into pursuing those goals and tending to those important values.  Invest your time building your resume and equipping yourself with skills that will help you in the long run with your career.  Also, invest your time in maintaining those friendships and relationship with your friends and family.  On a weekly basis, set a time to talk to them over the phone or go out to lunch!  That kind of investment will always leave you with more than you gave.

3 Things To Remember In Your Twenties

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Winter is finally here, and if you’re already worried about all those monthly costs that are unavoidable this season – we understand your concern. However, you don’t need to worry at all, as we have some useful tips on how to prepare your home for winter, even if you’re on a budget. Here are four of them, so check them out and save some money in the upcoming period!

Make sure you add insulation

Adding insulation will significantly contribute to keeping your home warm during winter, as it successfully keeps cold air out and warm air in. Some people claim that adding it in your attic is the easiest thing you can do, so be sure you add from 30 to 40cm of insulation there. Of course, if you aren’t really sure how much of it you already have, just look at the unfinished portion of your attic floor. You’ll need to add more if the insulation is sitting below the floor joists. Your water heater should also be insulated, simply because it can make up to 25 percent of the energy used in your home.A fiberglass and plastic insulating blanket will do the trick in this case, so use it to wrap your water heater and lower your energy costs. Besides that, you may also want to insulate your hot-water pipes in your basement. Flexible foam sleeves are exactly what you need, so opt for them and add insulation to that aspect of your home as well.

Check and seal your air leaks

In case you didn’t know, all kinds of leaks around your house can contribute to a 35 percent air loss, which is a quite big number. This means that warm air will find its way out of your home, which is why you should check all the potentially problematic spots and seal them as soon as possible. Some of the most common areas that are likely to feature air leaks are window and door frames, baseboards, outside vents to your dryer, and spaces around window condition units. You can easily check if there are some air leaks in your home by simply lighting a candle – if it flickers, there’s a leak somewhere. If that’s the case with your home, you can always buy an inexpensive tube of caulk and seal up all the problematic spots. Of course, you probably won’t be able to detect and reach all the ducts, as some of them are hidden in your walls, floors, and ceilings, but you will definitely do a great job by sealing up all the visible ones that actually cause major problems.

Declutter your home

Decluttering your home should be another essential step, and it’s so important for many reasons. First of all, it can undoubtedly give you far more space, as clutter can physically obstruct your path and prevent you from moving with ease in your own home. It can even be hazardous, since you can trip over it and actually get harmed. Besides that, physical clutter in your home often means emotional clutter as well, which is even more difficult to cope with. The act of decluttering will basically force you to decide what’s important to you, which will also help you be more careful and thoughtful in other areas in life. Once you get rid of all the unnecessary stuff that has been piling up for God knows how long, you’ll feel an instant relief. Apart from that, the quality of your life will improve as well, so don’t wait any longer and declutter your home right now. A lot of people opt for rubbish removal these days, and you can also use such services if you need your junk to be removed ASAP. Just hire a team that will turn up on time, act professionally, and get rid of your clutter without any problems. That’s surely one of the best ways to prepare your home for winter!

Be sure that your furnace runs smoothly

Servicing your furnace regularly has so many benefits, especially when you’re on a budget and want to save as much money as you can. First of all, it can help you notice a potential problem before it grows into a bigger one and causes an expensive breakdown, which is exactly what you want to avoid. Apart from that, it can prolong your furnace’s life and help it run more smoothly. You should know that older furnaces require annual services, whereas newer ones can be serviced every two years. Bear in mind that this isn’t a DIY job, so find a professional and get everything done properly. Besides that, your furnace filters should be replaced every month, since these can get quite dirty and therefore push up heating bills and shorten the life of a furnace. Here’s a useful tip: take the filter and hold it up to the light. If you can’t see the light through it, you need a new one!

As you can see, each of these four steps is more than essential when it comes to preparing your home for winter – even if you’re on a budget. You’ll save some money once you do everything you possibly can to minimize the monthly costs, so be sure to stick to our tips and you won’t make a mistake!

How to Prepare Your Home for Winter on a Budget

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It is amazing to see the trends that can come and go within a year's time.  Some trends seem to lose their popularity as quickly as they gained it, while others stick around and possibly crosses over to the next year.  Here is the continuing list of the biggest trends to come out of 2017.

Iceland

Photo by Jonatan Pie on Unsplash

If you felt like everyone and their mother went to Iceland in 2017, you are not alone.  Iceland was on Insider‘s “top 50 best places to travel in 2017”.  The small country that is about the “size of Kentucky” has grown immensely popular as a travel destination due to travel videos posted on social media and the amazingly cheap airfare from airlines such as WOW air.  WOW air had flights as cheap as $70 from the United States to Iceland.  This year opened up the world's eyes to see how incredible and unique the landscapes of Iceland are.  Iceland's landscapes are filled with volcanoes, glaciers, waterfalls, black sand beaches, and mountains that will make you feel like you are in Game of Thrones.  It is safe to say that the trend of traveling to Iceland will not be going away anytime soon.

Kombucha

Photo by Matt Hoffman on Unsplash

Despite the skepticism of the stated health benefits of the drink, Kombucha became the most popular drink trends to come out of 2017.  It went from being only found at small modern coffee shops and health food stores to being sold in almost every grocer nationwide.  The drink's popularity grew from the growing trend of consuming fermented foods and drinks.  According to International Scientific Association for Probiotics and Prebiotics, Kombucha is “made by fermenting sweetened tea using a combination of yeasts and bacteria.”  Many swear by its benefits of shortening waist lines, helping digestion, and even treating serious diseases.  The debatable qualities of this drink seemed to have not affected the its popularity in the slightest.  The sales in the United States were around “$500 million” according to the APP.

Subscription Boxes

Photo by Charisse Kenion on Unsplash

People love convenience.  Why go to the store when the store can come to you?  Subscription boxes have taken convenience to a new level.  You do not have to dealing with crowded shopping malls or even grocery stores ever again with subscriptions like Stitch Fix and Blue Apron.  All you do is pick what you desire on their websites, and it shows up at your door!  In 2017, subscription boxes became more and more popular.  The kind of products that you can have mailed to your front door include clothing, cosmetics, food, crafts, and office supplies.

As seen in Part 1 and 2 of this series, 2017 was undoubtably an exciting year of trends.  It will be interesting to see what trends will come about in 2018!

The Biggest Trends To Come Out Of 2017: Part 2

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Whether you loved it or hated it, 2017 is officially over.  With the beginning of another year, it is fascinating to look back on not only the large events that transpired, but the trends that came about in the past year.  Here are the biggest trends to come out of 2017!

Fitbits and Apple Watches

Photo by Andres Urena on Unsplash

Fitbits and Apple Watches were two of the top trending items in 2017.  Millions of watches, both Fitbit and Apple, have been sold in the past year, and it does not look like those numbers will be decreasing anytime soon.  Companies like Fitbit and Apple are taking advantage of the U.S' growing efforts of becoming more health-conscious by producing products that track steps taken, heart rate, sleeping patterns, and more.  Other than tracking your health, these products are linked to your smart phone.  This means that the accessory on your wrist can now alert you of incoming texts and calls.  Fitbit and Apple have taken something as simple as a watch and have given it the traits of a personal trainer, secretary, and health advisor.

Essential Oils

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

Essential Oils had many people trading in their medicine cabinet for a diffuser in 2017.  Many praised these oils for being a more natural remedy to ailments like colds, headaches, insomnia, and anxiety.  This trend is not showing signs of slowing down in the years to come.  According to Market Insider, “The [essential oils] market size is projected to reach USD 11.19 Billion by 2022.”

iPhone X

Photo by Koby Kelsey on Unsplash

Even with being the most expensive phone on the market with an astounding $999 price tag, the iPhone X has sold about 920,000 per day since its release.  Some of the features that have people selling everything they have to afford Apple's new product include facial ID recognition, a water-resistant glass surface(font and back), and revolutionary camera features never before seen in a phone.

Charcoal Everything

Photo by Chris Knight on Unsplash

Before 2017, many only associated the word “charcoal” with a grill.  Oh, how the times have changed!  Now, charcoal is associated with toothpastes, face masks, and edibles ranging from ice cream to pizza crust.  The health benefits that are connected to this dark mysterious product include whiter teeth, regular digestion, and clearer skin.  Although this trend might be fading out, it certainly had its moment in 2017.

The Biggest Trends To Come Out Of 2017: Part 1

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Every year people feel as if they need to create some resolution to make their lives more satisfying, to transform into a better individual, or to become a healthier person. Some of the mistakes that people make in developing their resolutions involve unobtainable goals or at least goals that require too much effort for which they are obviously not equipped to pursue. As you realize your New Year resolutions make sure to follow these key points that will help you make reasonable objectives that can be achieved-

  1. Know your limits- Self-evaluation is an essential part of becoming better, and it is no different for your New Year resolutions. If you never exercise and are one hundred pounds overweight, then your decision should not be to lose fifty pounds by Valentine’s Day. That is an objective that is doomed to fail. You can, however, plan to lose twenty pounds by then and be successful.
  2. Know your context- If your resolutions involve doing something you have never done before, then you may need professional help. Don’t try to conquer your resolutions by yourself, because when you see yourself not accomplishing them or doing them wrong the most likely scenario is that you will give up.
  3. Know your potential- When thinking of what to accomplish in 2018 make sure that you focus at least one resolution on your capacity and talents. Take something that you may have experience with and develop those skills further. Find something that you can excel at and will bring you success. This strategy will not only be fruitful but motivate you as well for your other resolutions.
  4. Know others- Sometimes the idea of New Year’s resolutions can become too self-focused. If someone is entirely focused on their own good, then not only is this somewhat narcissistic but it leaves you climbing your mountain alone. Helping others is an excellent goal to have for a New Year’s resolution. Knowing others can also be beneficial to succeeding in your personal goals by offering to help someone else with their goals, and in turn, they can assist you with yours. Many churches hold support groups for dealing with negative life issues. You don’t have to be a religious person to check one out and having a group of people around you to walk you through your healing may be more beneficial than you think.

A Brief How To Guide For New Year’s Resolutions

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As Winter emerges so does its dastardly wrath on our bodies and psyche. Here are some ways to fight Father Winter's onslaught-

  • Clothes– The best way to ensure your comfort during the winter is by wearing the right clothes. Your winter gear will obviously be different than your summer wardrobe, but sometimes fashion might have to take a back seat to warmth. Purchase some long johns and if they make you too hot, then just wear either the tops or the bottoms. I usually go with the bottoms because they secure a more consistent temperature compared to wearing only the top. For socks make sure to wear wool socks. They aren’t cheap, but they will be worth it. If you plan to be active in your wool socks, then to ensure that you don’t have sweaty stink feet when you take off your boots, which can embarrass you in front of your friends, make sure to wear a pair of regular ankle socks under your wool ones. For extra insurance put Gold Bond foot powder in your socks which will keep them drier and smelling fresh. In the winter time, make sure to wear a thick coat. Layers work, but they tend to let out more body heat than a nice thick coat. Layers are better for the Fall and Spring seasons. Finally, make sure to wear a hat if you are cold because most of your body heat escapes from your head.
  • Body Parts– The dry winter weather makes most people’s skin dry, scaly, and potentially sore. Make sure to use lotion or even special healing lotion on your hands and wherever else you made need it. Everyone has their favorite, and there are many price ranges so make sure to stock up. For your lips, I recommend Burt’s Bees Beeswax lip balm and Eos lip balm which is contained in fancy eggs.
  • Drinks– For a delightful drink that will warm your core I recommend coffee with Irish cream, Hot Chocolate with Rum, Hot Buttered Rum, Starbuck’s Carmel Apple Spice, or Cranberry Wassail.
  • Medicine– Make sure to have cough syrup and cold medicine on hand. Also, ginger ale and Saltines are great for those who get the flu. Honey is fantastic for sore throats and coughs, and you can’t be without a full supply of either chicken noodle soup or chicken stock.
  • Holiday Gift Strategy– For Christmas, Festivus, Hanukah, or whatever holiday you celebrate, if someone asks you what you want for a gift, then make sure to tell them movie theater gift cards and gift cards for your favorite restaurants. Heading out to the movies or grabbing a nice meal can sometimes beat those cabin fever blues that the winter brings on so harshly.

5 Essential Ways To Prepare For Winter Weather

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The Ultimate Checklist for Setting Up Utilities in Your Apartment


The Ultimate Checklist for Setting Up Utilities in Your Apartment

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One of the primary nutrients that every human needs and seems to be difficult to consume in the proper amount is protein. From ancient times as hunters and gatherers, it has been a challenge for human beings to acquire appropriate amounts of protein. This lack of protein is one reason why farming developed as it created a much more accessible and consistent way of obtaining the elusive and essential nutrient. According to Harvard’s School of Public Health, you should consume 8 grams of protein every day for every twenty pounds that you weigh. So a 140-pound woman should consume 56 grams of protein every day, while a 200-pound man should consume 80 grams a day. This demand increases with your amount of activity. If you are involved in regular strength training or strenuous physical labor, then the amount almost doubles. Harvard also states that the type of protein you consume is important. Plants lack specific amino acids that we need. Thus, animal protein is more desirable, and of course, a proper balance of white and red meats is essential for other health concerns. But how can we consume this much protein every day?

For instance, an average size chicken breast contains 25 grams of protein. Therefore, the average non-physically active person would have to eat more than two breasts of chicken every day. So what are some good alternatives to eating a ton of expensive meat every day?

Right now eggs are cheap. Each egg contains six grams of protein. You may want to start your day off with two or three eggs for breakfast and hard boiling them beforehand may be the quickest way to begin your day. There are also a lot of good options now for maintaining your daily protein intake. Here are a few-

  • Nature Valley Protein Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate Bars- These are the best tasting and quickest to eat of all of the protein bars I have tried. These contain 10 grams of protein and 5 grams of fiber which is excellent for you as well.

    Nature Valley

  • Pure Protein Bars- These contain around 20 grams of protein.

    Pure Protein

  • Premier Protein Bars- These are the best in my opinion with 30 grams of protein, 3 grams of fiber, and good taste, they will give you the most for your time and money. The one negative is that they are slightly larger and can take a bit of time to eat compared to only one of the Nature Valley bars, but they have three times the protein.

    Premier Protein

  • Premier Protein Shakes- These are the best as they are quicker to consume, the chocolate tastes just like chocolate milk, and they contain the same nutrients as the bars. They are more expensive than the bars, and you have to be careful. Others who have tried these including myself have noticed that if you drink it all at one time, it can make you have to go to the restroom in a man’s necessary sitting fashion. I recommend drinking half with food and then the other half later. This method has seemed to quell the digestive issues.

    Premier Protein

  • Muscle Milk- These contain 20 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber. Some people don’t like the aftertaste although I like them. They also contain a controversial ingredient that some claim is unhealthy.

    Muscle Milk

There are other shakes out there, but for a protein shake I would recommend the Premier Protein, and for those who want to save money and potential digestive issues I would stick with the bars. Turkey is also an excellent source of healthy protein so have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Are You Getting Enough Protein?

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