Kitchen Upgrade: 10 Simple Kitchen Hacks That Make a Huge Difference

People are becoming more health conscious than ever. A lot of people are waking up to the fact that fast, processed and convenience food, how much convenient it may be, is disastrous to your health in long run. What’s the solution? Homemade, fresh and nutritious food! Well, to make food at home, you need the right utensils and appliances as well and you need to know some simple kitchen hacks.

 

To prepare a meal with fresh food is not too difficult, but to serve an attractive and nutritional meal without the right appliances is an art. The person who can whip up a meal with confidence and skill is the one who has carefully studied the secret of using the right kitchen appliances properly. To help even the most inexperienced cooks to launch out and try some fantastic new recipes, here are 10 simple kitchen hacks that make a huge difference –

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  1. With the festive season almost upon us, the novice carver shouldn’t attempt an electric carver but rather choose a thin-bladed carving knife, and have it well sharpened before starting the meal. A roast joint of meat should always be served on a platter large enough to hold not only the roast, but also the carved portions of meat.

    2. Its the time of year for lots of parties. Instead of plain ice, add frozen berries to your drink and enjoy a burst of tropical flavor.

    3.         If you don’t have a knife sharpener, turn over a coffee mug and run the knife along the rough edge of the mug about 20x on each side.

    4.         Always cut across the grain of the meat, remembering to cut ham very thing, while mutton, pork and veal can be cut considerably thicker.

    5.         Your succulent roast will look even more appetizing if surrounded by golden-brown roast potatoes, interspersed with buttered corn, carrots and greens.

    6.         Keep extra chopped garlic fresh for up to a week in the refrigerator by covering it with olive oil and storing it in an airtight container.

    7.         Make cream and cottage cheese last longer by storing the container upside down in the fridge. This forms a vacuum effect that slows down the growth of bacteria.

    8.         To find items quickly, choose attractive see-through glass. Make sure to choose those jars with rubber seals to lock freshness and also protect from ants. For sheer convenience, check that the jars can go from the fridge to the microwave.

    9.         Tired of your bread losing its freshness too quickly. Pop a celery stick into the bread’s plastic bag containers and leave overnight. The bread slowly absorbs the humidity from the celery, keeping i fresher far longer.

 

  1. Invest in a fantastic magic non-stick liner which is heat-resistant up to 260C. You’ll love the way food literally just glides off, and the liner can go into the dishwasher too. This is available online at Lakeland.

 

With these useful tips, you can be sure that you can ensure your kitchen is filled with useful, time-saving charm.

 

 

 

Facebook May Use Your Friends Information To Judge Your Credibility

Most of us are on social media these days, the most popular being Facebook, and why shouldn’t we? It’s a great, easy way to keep in contact with our friends and family members who might live hundreds of miles away and all for free. We can share photos and videos, message, video call, and more. However, in the future there might be a darker use of the platform in the not so distant future. There was a patent secured earlier this year that allowed Facebook to determine a user’s creditworthiness by using your friends’ Facebook details and information.

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What Is This Patent?

 

Essentially this patent means that lenders could view the FICO credit score of your friends to judge how credible you are if you were to apply for a loan. The average of all your friends credit rating would then be the figure used to decide if you were granted the loan or not.

 

Positives Of The Patent

 

In reality, Facebook are not exactly the first company to use a similar invention to help lenders assess the reliability of someone as an individual and to assess their creditworthiness. To determine them as high-risk or low-risk if you will. In fact it could be very beneficial for alternative lending as a whole, if consumers are seeking a different way to be approved.

 

Negatives of the Patent

 

A potential risk however is that predatory lenders could convince potential customers to use this technology if it were to ever become available. Certain individuals could then be liable for a loan due to the average credit rating of all their friends, when in fact they should not be considered in their current situation. This means that they will find themselves in tough financial times and may spend years if not longer paying back this loan with growing interest.

 

Another important point to take note of is that if lenders do decide to use this feature in the future, and use it as means to measure potential business owners trying to take out a loan, it could be incredibly difficult for them to do so. They could use it to refuse a loan when in fact the individual is very low risk, and thus the whole system seems very unfair.

 

Controversy

 

It is still unclear at the moment however if this patent will ever be able to be used. With the number of cyber attacks and security breaches increasing online, it comes as no surprise along with the points mentioned above that the patent so far has not been very popular. There’s even been mention of the chaos it would cause to Facebook as a whole, with people friending and unfriending people purely based on this patent, or possibly even leaving the platform altogether. Of course there are benefits to be had with this progress in technology and online functionality, but we should always be very careful when it comes to privacy, data protection and other secure details. We already are giving permission for Facebook to sell our details to advertisers. If however this then extends to our friends and their credit rating and other financial information, it is a very grey area indeed.

7 Reasons You Should Date Someone from a Different Culture

Dating is a difficult game to play. Sometimes it can be so tough that you begin to wonder if you will ever find that one person you’re destined to spend the rest of your life with. But have you ever considered dating someone from a different culture? It can be exciting and refreshing, and could lead to a long term relationship! Here are seven reasons to consider.

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The Language

 

Learning a new language has so many benefits it’s incredible it is not more openly recommended and supported. If you were dating someone who spoke a different language, you would learn more than just how to say “hello, please, beer” in a different language. You’ll begin to learn immense vocabulary and complex grammar structures without even trying! Immersion is the best method of learning, after all.

 

The Food

 

We all enjoy our food, and sometimes food from other cultures can be especially delicious. Sure, we all enjoy a Chinese or Indian treat from the local take away, but this doesn’t give us an idea of the day to day meals of other cultures. Dating someone from a different country can open up a whole new list of unique, delicious food for us to try. You might even learn to prepare some!

 

Appreciate Your Own Culture

 

You’d be surprised how many unique and fascinating aspects of your own country and culture you tend to ignore or forget. Talking to similar people every day who take the same things for granted doesn’t help. But if you were to open up to your new partner about your cultural traditions, not only will you be able to share your experiences together but you might discover a rekindling love for your own heritage!

 

Culturally Aware

 

Have you heard the expression that travel broadens the mind? This is true. Learning about different cultures, people, traditions and experiences expands your mind and can even shape your personality. You will be more accepting and welcoming of people from different backgrounds, and become more culturally sensitive.

 

Grow Stronger

 

Unfortunately, with dating someone from a different culture comes a lot of doubt and possibly even abuse from close minded and uninformed people. The only benefit of this is that all the naysayers will only cause you to grow closer together, and forge an even stronger relationship. This new thicker skin will benefit you in all aspects of your life.

 

We All Want Adventure

 

We all want a little adventure and excitement in our lives. Dating someone from a different country means that you will inevitably visit their homeland, and learn and experience many things along the way. Every holiday and travel journey is an adventure, and now you have a new reason to go!

 

Holidays, Holidays, Holidays!

 

Finally, once you have been together for a significant amount of time, chances are discussions will lead into your two different sets of beliefs and traditions, and how you will incorporate these together. You will not only understand each others lives more clearly, chances are there will also be two different sets of holidays for you to take advantage of! So what are you waiting for?

5 Essential Tips for Extending Your Used Car’s Lifespan

 

Let’s face it, owning and maintaining cars is expensive business. There are so many different factors to consider, and it seems that you need to pay for something or other every other week! This is why it is important to try and extend your car’s lifespan for as long as you can, since buying a new car is so expensive and even an old car can last very long if maintained properly. So here are five tips that are essential when considering getting the most out of your vehicles, to save you forking out for a new car every other year.

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Maintenance

 

Each car should come with a maintenance schedule in the owner’s manual. Although it may seem easier and cheaper initially to let a few issues slide, they add up so quickly that it really is cheaper to sort out any problems as soon as you can. It does feel like a struggle checking things such as brake pads, steering, oil levels and so on on a regular basis, but it is also essential if you are planning to extend the car’s lifespan and want to keep it in great condition for longer.

 

Fluids

 

You should try and keep an eye on all your fluids at least once a month, even longer if the car is starting to get a little older. Check the engine oil, coolant fluids, transmission fluids, and brake and power steering fluids. Although you could refill oil and coolant fluids yourself, if any of the others are low, you should take it to a garage as soon as possible.

 

Be A Good Driver

 

This one may seem a little obvious, but the safer and more conscientious you drive the less damage your car will sustain. Driving like a maniac or poorly can lead to frequent service and repair charges, which not only cost a lot of money but will also reduce your car’s lifespan in the long run. So check up on how to minimise wear and tear while driving, and also listen out for any unusual or strange noises that occur while you are driving.

 

Take Care Of Tires

 

Tires can also be a very expensive business, so you should try to make them last as long as possible while still ensuring they are safe and legal. Check their pressures regularly, and also consider rotating your tires every 10,000 miles or so. This will help prevent any early tire wear, ensuring all tires are roughly even in correspondence to each other.

 

Wash Your Car

 

We all know how much of a pain washing the car can be, especially on a lazy Sunday afternoon. But washing regularly is pivotal in ensuring a long lifespan through preventing a build-up of dirt, rust and paint damage. You may be surprised, but most experts will suggest that you wash your car every week or two to keep it as healthy as possible. Also if you don’t do so already, consider waxing the car every few months, since this will help keep the shine and color to make it look new and clean, and will also help prevent small scratches.

Top 18 Herbs That Promote Long Life

Various herbs are known to impact someone’s state of health to be better. Some reduce the risk of serious illnesses while others boost the digestive and immune system. They all are beneficial to prolong a person’s life span and increasing longevity.

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Here are the full list of each herb and its health benefits:

 

Astragalus

Astragalus comes from the root of a perennial pea plant which grows in the northern and eastern parts of China. A popular even since the era of ancient China, Astragalus helps boost your immune system.

 

Cayenne

Commonly known to add spiciness and a bit of heat to food, this herb can also be used to slow down the rate of bleeding in human. Cayenne by nature can make a human’s blood vessels more elastic, and therefore can support the bleeding recovery process. In turn, it also serves as an effective remedy to reestablish normal blood pressure.

 

Cinnamon

Famous for its delightful taste and refreshing smell, Cinnamon is a boost to a human body’s circulatory system in various ways. Its primary benefit includes supporting the lowering of high blood sugar levels, but it is also known for its ability to control cholesterol level.

 

Coriander

Coriander is one of the herbs which provide numerous benefits as it triggers various chemical processes within a human body. Primarily, coriander is known for its ability for energizing and revitalizing human’s cardiovascular system meaning that it jolts your blood circulation as well as various nutrients and elements transport.

 

Dandelion

Dandelion has been known for its benefit of getting human’s blood pressure under control. Dandelion actually reduces the blood pressure by reducing the amount of blood in a human’s body and therefore prudent consumption of this herb is advised.

 

Echinacea

Echinacea is well known in almost all countries in the world for being contained in some of the best sellers herbal supplements in stores around the United States, Europe and Asia. It is known to fight infections by way of eliminating harmful bacteria, and additionally it boosts the immune system. Echinacea has been known as the remedy of flu and mild cold symptoms, preferred over the factory made medications since nowadays people are more attracted towards living as natural as possible.

 

Elderberry

Elderberry helps to prevent flu and its spreading within a large population. Its juice was known to treat a flu epidemic in Panama in 1995, and since then it has been used as a traditional remedy to fight against flu viruses.

 

Garlic

Garlic has been popular for being the traditional medication to manage high blood pressure as well as preventing heart disease. Additionally, garlic has been long famous for preventing certain types of cancer as well as for its bacteria killing elements.

 

Guggul

Despite its weird sounding name, Guggul is known to be a cholesterol targeting herb as it chemically reduces bad cholesterol even before it reaches the blood stream. Having said that, regular consumption of Guggul is often advised for people with high cholesterol level as an alternative to regular medicinal intake.

 

Hawthorn

Hawthorn is great for lowering blood pressure, thus further reducing heart rate and opening the arteries. However, the effect cannot be felt instantly. Regular consumption for a long term is needed in order to significantly feel the benefits of hawthorn in aiding your heart or blood problems.

 

Holy Ghost

The Holy Ghost, or sometimes also known as the Angelica roots gained its popularity in Scandinavia around the era of 12th century. Still a quite popular herb in Austria and other European countries, it strengthens the circulatory system and the heart in general.

 

Horse Chestnut

The herb obtained its name due to an error in believing that the tree belongs to a family of chestnut. Has been popular in Europe for a long while, horse chestnut is capable of reducing swelling by strengthening veins and capillary walls.

 

Kelp

Being one of the most popularly consumed in Asia, Kelp is known to have many benefits. Due to its high iodine content, it has been used since the ancient times to cure various infections.

 

Mango Ginger

Being completely unrelated to neither mango nor ginger, Mango Ginger which is still a family of turmeric is famous for relieving painful menstrual cramps as well as preventing cysts and tumors inside the female’s reproductive system.

 

Motherwort

Motherwort contains a rare naturally occurring organic nitrogen-containing base called the leonurine. When taken in the right doses, Leonurine directly helps in the relaxation of heart muscles and therefore can be said to be one of the most magical herbs in maintaining your heart healthy.

 

Nettle

Nettle is known for curing a lot of diseases. Its anti arthritic characteristic makes it a remedy for arthritis and hay fever; however Nettle is also known to cure anemia.

 

Turmeric

Very commonly found as one of the spices added into those delicious Asian dishes, Turmeric has various proven health benefits. Its main active ingredient – the curcumin, has a very strong anti oxidant and anti inflammatory effect to the human body.

 

Yucca Root

Yucca is a medicinal herb native to Mexico. It is known to have an anti inflammatory and anti arthritic effects on human body, and therefore is popular as a traditional remedy to cure arthritis.

 

 

These 5 Things Happen To Your Brain And Body After A Digital Detox

Do you constantly scroll through your loaded Newsfeed every minute you can get? Do you have hard time looking through the different posts of your friends because of the petty and silly posts of others? Do you ever wonder if what you are doing can create an impact to your stress levels? Spending so much time online or surfing the internet via personal computer or smartphone can be good sometimes, but when there is too much exposure, it will definitely fuel stress and anxiety in your brain and body. To prove my statement, here are 5 reasons on why you should consider undergoing a digital detox.

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You Get To Be Healthy And Happy

Absence of digital devices will help develop other activities that will allow your body to do exercises and you will be able to have more time selecting healthy fruits and vegetable for your meals. You will also be stressed and clutter free for the rest of your day because you have the luxury of time.

You Get Your Memory Enhanced

Ask yourself this question without looking at your smartphone, “How many phone numbers do I know?” If you can memorize at least 5 phone numbers, then, you really have a good memory. But if you have less, you better undergo a digital detox. A lot of people nowadays are dependent on their devices because it can store almost all of the pieces of information they have. They don’t even realize that these devices have inflicted negative effects on our minds. When you ask the oldies, they can even memorize the number of their oldest friends back in the 90’. Now, only a few individuals can even memorize the phone number of their mother or father.

You Get To Connect With…

When you are normally plugged into your smartphones, computers, and other digital devices, it is so much easier to live a day without any worries or recognizing the people around you. Although staying away from these gadgets or digital devices will somehow create petty and negative effects, it has some great effects. You will be more in tune with the environment you are in and with the people who surrounds you. Let the beauty of the everyday life set you free and make you relax even for just a few hours each day. You will even connect with individuals whom you will love because you share the same interests other than using your digital devices.

You Get To Converse

You should know by now that viral videos and hashtags are not forms of real conversation. What is meant by this topic is that you get to share the different perspective you have in mind with someone else and in exchange of your thought, you will even receive their perspective and learn different lessons from it. Having a face to face interaction or conversation with someone can be very challenging and at the same time fun. Deep conversations will only occur when and if you are not plugged in to any of the digital devices. You will also develop a certain degree of focus when it comes to the kind of people you talk to.

You Get A New Mindset

Your mindset will not be contained only to those you see in your digital devices. You will even see and experience it yourself if you decide to have a digital detox. Only few people know or notice that there are so many amazing changes occurring in people who unplug themselves for a while. Some even find themselves getting back at their old gym routine and feel a stress-free day. Since you are not that distracted, you will have that tendency to focus more and take care of the numerous things you have not taken care of because you were too busy scrolling down your newsfeed. You can even use this time to start and new relationship or refresh the existing one, make changes in your career, and try new activities.

Science Finds Listening to Live Music Can Be Just as Effective as Medicine

Listening to music is probably the most appreciated leisure activity among people of all ages. But beyond being a remarkable way to spend your free time, listening to music, especially live one, can have tremendous therapeutic effects.

First, let’s discuss the beneficial influence of music, whether it’s live or recorded, and then I am going to present a study from 1983 conducted by the University of Oxford regarding how people suffering from cancer, Parkinson’s and other diseases noticed improvements due to music therapy .

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A wide range of studies suggest that music can have a very powerful impact on one’s physical and mental health. Let’s go deeper into this topic.

Stress and anxiety reduction

The number of people suffering from anxiety is very high. Not to mention all the stress that the capitalist style of living involves. In order not to break down due to the overwhelming pressure, office workers need to spend time performing stress relieving activities. Studies indicate that listening to music as well as watching fish swimming around in an aquarium are probably the most effective relaxation techniques.

Another set of studies has proven that pain decreases in intensity and post-surgery recovery is speeded up when patients are exposed to music. Also, low to moderate anxiety as well as depression symptoms can be reduced dramatically after undergoing music therapy.

Blood pressure regulator

Unbalanced diet, sleep deprivation and working long hours are the worst enemy of the modern man. Cardiovascular diseases occur in most cases because of a chaotic way of living. Blood pressure spikes and heart rate issues are improved by listening to music. This claim is backed by thorough scientific research: the explanation is that your favorite singles make your body release endorphins, which affect the well-functioning of the circulatory system.

Solve sleep problems

Technology keeps us awake more than we should be. Plenty of cases of insomnia were reported among teens and college students. Poor sleep quality disturbs one’s ability to focus and is linked to reduced cognitive performance. An alternative to those expensive and harmful sleeping meds is listening to music, audio books or basically anything that leads to tension release.

Get back in good spirits

When you feel down after a tough day at work, music is the best remedy.   A good song can make all the worries disappear in an instant. Musical intervention is known to produce a burst of excitement similar to that one experienced after chocolate intake or after sex.

Keep your brain healthy

Music and reading are alike. They both reduce the risks of developing diseases involving memory impairments such as Alzheimer’s. Creativity and mind sharpness are also boosted by music, which can help you advance on a professional level.

The study

A study conducted in 1983 published by the University of Oxford has proven the hypothesis that live music, compared to the recorded one, is able to change a patient’s mood as well as affecting his physical wellbeing.

The study focused on the assumption that patients can benefit more from listening to live music. Fifty cancer patients of different ages were involved in the study. Some of them had to listen to live music while the rest had to listen to music played by a device. The results were clear: live music is more beneficial.

However, many may claim that the results are not really convincing because of the fact that this particular issue is very subjective. Nowadays a lot of research is put into this matter, so music therapy at a large scale will definitely become reality. Until then, groups such as “The Sync Project” gather valuable, accurate information regarding music’s impact on physical functions.