Archive for December, 2014

How Clutter Affects Mood and Concentration

Service Week December 23, 2014 at 12:40 am

clutterThe effect of clutter goes far beyond the appearance of your space or home. Too much of it can actually affect your mental, physical, and emotional health, decreasing your overall concentration and productivity. Clutter can also frustrate and drain you, negatively affecting your ability to work efficiently and relax completely.

New Focus Cleaning discusses more about clutter, specifically how it affects your health and how you think.

Cluttered Spaces

Disorganisation or laziness is not necessarily the main cause of cluttered spaces. It can be due to sentimentality or worries about the future. Many people find it hard to let go of things because of a feeling that they will need it someday. This is why what one person calls clutter is a collection or treasure for others.

Impact on the Brain

According to a study from Princeton University, clutter or excessive mess in your surroundings can negatively affect your ability to process information. Studies suggest that the clutter in your space competes for your attention, increasing your stress levels and decreasing performance. It overloads your senses, impairing your ability to think creatively.

The Cluttered Environment

A space filled with clutter creates a stressful environment. This is why people who are confined to clutter will ultimately start to avoid the area. The cluttered space will induce feelings of guilt or frustrations at not being able to complete tasks. This can make the workload become even more overwhelming than it actually is.

Health and Mental Function

Massive clutter can also contribute to decreased mental function like short-term memory loss and reduced attentiveness. This can also intensify stress, which may lead to increased sickness and decreased immunity. Those who exposed to clutter may also experience headaches, fatigue, and cold-like symptoms.

It is no surprise why many companies call in professional cleaners to control clutter in their office. This, however, is not just to remove dust or freshen up their carpet. Clients hire professional cleaners to boost employee mood. They believe that getting the clutter under control can also improve attitude and health.

Food Truck Ideas: Setting up Your own Food Business

Service Week December 22, 2014 at 1:17 am

food trailerFood concession trailer is gaining popularity these days. Truly, this is an ideal business for everyone. Unlike running an actual restaurant, it is much simpler and easier to maintain. You can take it anywhere and find the best spot to sell your product.

If you’re a food enthusiast and want to venture out, this is a good start for you. Look for reliable specialty trailer services to customize your mobile food truck. To help you out, here are some features you will need in the future:

1. The right equipment

The first thing you need to check is the basic equipment. Make sure you have everything you need to prepare food in an efficient and safe environment. Things you need include electrical and plumbing systems, a sanitation area, water tanks, and of course, a decent cooking space.

2. Interior necessities

The layout and design of your trailer are a huge factor. You need a comfortable space for storage and food preparation. Always consider the materials used for your truck. For food storage, you will need an efficient refrigerator and a freezer. Have some cupboards fashioned too. You will also need sufficient outlets for other appliances like a coffee maker, a blender, and a cash register.

3. Exterior necessities

The exterior of the trailer is part of your selling point. Consider the comfort and safety of your customers. Make sure to clean the area at all times. Provide everything they need—proper ventilation, a decent eating counter, and portable fans. For the food counters, you need a combination of large serving areas and display window panels to get high visibility for your products. This is one way to let your customers know you’re serving good and healthy food.

4. Helpful cleaning aspects

There are several easy-clean features to help your truck look its best. Choose smooth surfaces; it’s a lot more difficult to clean porous surfaces. This is to make it easier to wash and wipe the interior. You may also want to add serving and prep counters made of stainless steel to make your trailer look more appealing to the customers.

These are some of the things you need to check when looking for food trucks. Look for reliable service providers who can help you get started with your business. Check out the rates they offer and choose the best one that suits your budget and needs.

It’s All in Early Detection: How Hospitals in Singapore Help Prevent Chronic Diseases

Health Week December 17, 2014 at 5:06 am

health screeningAligned with the policies of hospitals in the Western world, as well as those in other developed countries like Israel and Japan, Singaporean hospitals have taken steps to make sure patients have the best medical facilities and health care. The government has taken steps to create health policies that don’t simply fight diseases, but more importantly, prevent them.

Aiming for Early Detection

One of the ways to do this is through health screening. Basic health screening practices in Singapore aim for early detection and prevention of chronic diseases and other lifestyle related illnesses common in developed countries. These include hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, and renal failure. Also included in the screening are tests to detect and prevent or delay the onset of stroke, heart attack, and high cholesterol.

The Annuals

Health screening consists of regular visits to the doctor for a series of tests. This is not limited to the annual physical exam, but for tests which are specific to health risks associated with age, gender, and other risk factors. These are not arbitrary tests, but are recommended under the guidelines set forth by the Screening Test Review Committee of the Academy of Medicine Singapore.

Some Age and Gender Specific Guidelines

Among the guidelines are specific tests for the following age and gender groups:

• Persons 50 years and older are required to have regular screening. This is via an annual stool analysis for colorectal cancer using the Faecal Immunohistochemistry test for occult blood.
• Women aged 40 to 49 years old are advised to have an annual mammogram screening for breast cancer. Women who are 50 to 69 years of age should have a mammogram every two years.
• Women between the ages of 25 and 69 years of age who are sexually active should have a Pap smear screening for cervical cancer every 3 years.

Optional tests are can also be requested for those with a personal or family history of diseases. These include tests for other types of cancers, diabetes, hypertension, rheumatoid arthritis, and others.

World Class Standards

Procedures for basic health screening in Singaporean hospitals follow set protocols for developed countries. These tests should be done on a regular basis, following the above guidelines, to help maintain good health and an active lifestyle.

Can You Really Improve Your Metabolism?

Health Week December 12, 2014 at 1:01 am

Improve Your MetabolismPeople who find it difficult to lose weight often blame it on their supposedly slow metabolism. The truth, however, is that slow metabolism is rarely the cause of excess weight. While it affects your body’s basic energy needs, physical activity and food intake mostly determines how much you weigh.

Metabolism plays a huge role in nutrition, dieting, and bodily function. It might not contribute to weight gain, but it surely affects your ability to lose weight. So the question is, is it possible to speed up your metabolism? Read on to find out the answers.

Metabolism Explained

Metabolism refers to the chemical processes that happens continuously inside your body to keep your organs functioning normally. This includes repairing cells, breathing, and digesting food. Your age, body size, and genes all play an important role in determining your metabolic rate.

Muscle cells need more energy to maintain than fatty cells, so those with higher muscle to fat ratio tend to have a higher metabolic rate. It is important to note, however, that as you get older, the tendency is to gain fat and lose more muscle. This is why metabolism tends to decrease with age.

Food and Metabolism

The food you eat affects your metabolism and mood, making you feel either energetic or sluggish. Foods high in saturated fat, sugars, sweeteners, and low in fiber and water will slow your digestion and make you feel lazy.

Vegetables, fruits, beans, and spices will provide carbohydrate and fats that will give you energy and blood sugar levels. Lean proteins, healthy fats, and certain weight loss dietary supplements can promote better digestion and muscle building.

Boosting Metabolism

While you don’t have much control over metabolism, you can regulate the amount of calories you burn through physical activity. In fact, some people who claim to have fast metabolism are probably just more active than others.

Although it is claimed that certain foods and beverages can speed up metabolism, the evidence behind these claims is not that strong. The effect of these foods on metabolism is different, as each person will respond differently.

Some studies, however, suggest that certain habits can improve your metabolism. Others say that drinking at least two glasses of water before every meal can help you lose an average of 15.5 over three months. Some, meanwhile, suggest eating fiber rich foods to burn fat by as much as 30 percent. Try these methods and see which works best for you.

U.S. Guidelines for Bariatric Surgery Insurance

Service Week December 9, 2014 at 3:29 am

Surgery InsurancePeople need food to survive, but too much of it can risk your health. Obesity is a common condition in the U.S., with data showing that the number of cases has more than doubled in the last four decades. Despite reports saying a decline in numbers, obesity remains one of the leading health problems in the country.

There are many sources of this health condition, yet experts have already developed different treatments to help lose weight. Doctors suggest bariatric surgery to patients who can’t cut their weight with just diet and exercise. As this is a medical procedure, it’s important that you get insurance for it.

Bariatric surgery is covered in most medical insurance packages, but you also have to make sure that it is specifically included in the coverage before getting the insurance, according to GraceyBacker.com.

Insurance Packages that Cover the Procedure

The “Obamacare” program requires companies in 23 states to cover bariatric surgeries for all Individual Plans, Family Plans and Small Group Plans. For Medicare and Medicaid, meanwhile, you need to have a body mass index of over 35 and at least one health problem related to obesity before getting coverage.

General Requirements Prior to the Surgery

Present any document confirming that previous attempts at medical treatment are not unsuccessful. Once you have all the requirements, Medicare and Medicaid will cover gastric sleeve and bypass surgeries, lap band surgery, and biliopancreatic diversion with duodenal switch.

You must also be referred by your attending doctor or primary care physician to get approval. The surgeon must be included in the directory of The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Make sure that the hospital and medical team are all within the network of the insurance company.

Given that you already have all the requirements and have confirmed the coverage of the weight loss surgery, you have to wait from one month to one year all throughout the process, from start to finish.

If you already notice signs or experience the effects of obesity, it’s better to seek professional help as soon as possible. Don’t wait for it to develop before you make a move. You must take this health problem seriously because it can lead to the development of other serious diseases and illnesses.

Know Thy Enemy: Top 3 Surprising Causes of Bad Breath

Health Week December 9, 2014 at 1:55 am

bad breathHas someone—a friend, family member, or a special person in your life—ever hinted that your breath smells, um, bad? (Hint: many sufferers of bad breath can’t tell.) You might be spending a few minutes brushing and flossing every day, but sometimes, poor oral hygiene is really not the cause.

Here are some of the surprising things that can result in halitosis or bad breath:

Low-Carb Diet

Going on the road to weight loss is good, but the journey itself may include bad breath. Eating low levels of carbohydrates make your body turn to fats and proteins as the main sources of energy. The process of burning the fat and protein can cause the body to create ketones, a substance that has an unpleasant smell.

Stuffy Nose

Pass the tissue — and a bottle of mint chews, please. That cold prevents you from inhaling and exhaling through the nose, and you only breathe through your mouth. This dries the tissues in your mouth and reduces the flow of saliva, which is your mouth’s natural cleanser.

The less saliva, the more bacteria there is, and the more powerful the odour. Experts at Perth Breath Clinic say that an easy remedy for your breath is to chew sugarless gum; consider taking KForce Plus, too, as this can be a very effective solution for the odour.

Not Eating Breakfast

Eating a healthy breakfast has some well-established advantages to your mind and body; one is that it gives you the right nutrients and fuel for the day. It can also help prevent bad breath.

Surprised? Having a good breakfast helps get rid of morning breath, since it stimulates saliva production, which flushes away bacteria that have been lingering your bacteria while sleeping. Of course, you need to lay off the sandwich filled with onion.

That’s only three of the things on the endless list of “surprising causes of bad breath”. There are so many other sneaky offenders out there: taking antidepressants, smoking, consuming heavy amounts of alcohol, eating gummy bears, your mouthwash, and so much more. The key here is to know these causes so you’ll know what to do.

Green Mirrors

Service Week December 8, 2014 at 7:47 am

Thanksgiving has come and gone. Even with all the quirks and strange encounters the holidays may bring, it’s still about family, and family is all that matters. Fortunately, meeting relatives can mean more than awkward conversations, there’s also a chance of actually learning something.

Thanksgiving Science

Some relatives probably couldn’t wait to show off some parts of the house, from the storm doors Salt Lake City companies have to offer to the fiberglass windows that have just been installed. You may notice the green tinge along the sides of the mirrors. What may confuse you, however, is when you find out that the green is just the color of the mirrors. Don’t worry, as not many people know that mirrors have colors. Unlike glass, mirrors have to be opaque, because these need to deflect light to reflect an image.

The way glass gets color is about the same way water does. Imagine a clear glass of water, its colorless like the glass that it’s in. Now imagine the ocean, shallow water starts with a greenish hue, while solely becoming a deeper blue as it gets deeper. Likewise, the glass starts as a clear material, gradually adding more colour as it gets more opaque. Nevertheless, why is it that people almost never see a mirror’s color?

No Color, No Problem?

This is because the mirror is doing its job: it reflects all the light it receives back at the source (depending on the angle), not allowing any of its own color to influence the image. The usual color mirrors have is green, but if the skeptics need more proof, there are two ways to find out for sure.

The simpler way is to look for a mirror without a frame, and looking at it from the side. These edge parts are kept in the frame so they reflect the least amount of light. Green is the lowest wave in the color spectrum, making it the only color visible.

The second method is to look into a mirror tunnel, or a space where two mirrors are facing each other. Light loses photons every time it’s reflected off a mirror; green remains because for the same reason as the first method.

The next time you go to a family gathering, you just might end up finding a good source for obscure scientific information.

Turning Back the Time: 6 Ways to Make Your Old Car Look New

Service Week December 5, 2014 at 10:27 am

Make Your Old Car Look NewCars are among the things that people take pride in having. They drive their vehicles around the city. For some, it’s even an extension of their body and reflects their personality. As much as most people want to own one, brand new cars cost a fortune, which is why others prefer to buy used cars.

There are a few ways you can transform it from being a century-old vehicle to a more sophisticated car.

Do a General Cleaning

First, you need to clean your car thoroughly. Not just a quick-scrubbing cleaning, but general cleaning. It takes more than just soaping the exteriors. Take out everything inside the car and vacuum or brush the corners and edges. Don’t forget the engine because it helps you uncover hidden concerns.

Change Broken Interior Parts

Replace all broken parts and dim lights in the dashboard. Changing a pitted steering wheel doesn’t cost too much and it gives you a better feeling whilst driving. Illumination is important, especially at night when you barely see the speedometer. You save more on the seats by buying new foams and covers instead.

Install Innovative Window Tints

Change the window tints of the car. It’s easy to identify if a tint is manufactured ages ago. Besides, companies developed newer tints to ensure a better driving experience. The experts from Tint Works mention that films can reject up to 99% ultraviolet radiation and up to 68% solar energy. They added that it reduces glare and eye fatigue, improving safety and comfort among other benefits.

Set Up Better Systems

Switch out the old systems with a new one. Adding a GPS navigation system is a way to reduce the visual age of your car. Revitalise the AC system, as well. What good is a car if you are not comfortable in it?

Clear Up All of the Lights

Older headlight and taillight lamps are made of plastic. These become dull and even get a bit yellowish and unclear over time. You can buy newer ones instead, which are made of glass. Clear headlights don’t just give the nicer looks, but provides you better driving at night, as well.

Give a Nice Exterior Makeover

Lastly, mind the exteriors. Give it a nice paint job; make it look shinier and smooth. Repainting can be costly, but it’s all worth the investment. Change the worn tires; not only does this add a lot of years to the looks of the car, but promotes safe and easy driving as well.

New cars are not necessarily always better. Overhauling your old car gives it better looks and function. It is about proper maintenance, after all.

Warning: You’re Taking Medicines the Wrong Way

Health Week December 4, 2014 at 9:08 am

MedicinesHealth literacy is an important part of medication safety. Patients have a big responsibility in the matter–understanding the medication instructions given after being discharged from the hospital or clinic. Healthcare professionals also carry the same obligation of making sure that patients understand what they need to do upon getting home.

Medication mistakes can be risky and increase the risk for injury or side effects. Pharmacists at Jolley’s Sandy Pharmacy discuss the most common medication mistakes and how you can avoid them.

Increasing Dosage on Your Own

Physicians prescribe medicine at doses they think will have the best effect with least risk. Deciding to increase the dosage on your own can be extremely harmful and cause all sorts of side effects. If you believe that your current dosage is not working, ask your doctor for possible modifications or solutions.

Taking Medication with Alcohol

Mixing alcohol with painkillers or over-the-counter drugs can negatively affect your cognition. Even taking certain alcohol with antibiotics can cause nausea, increased heart rate, and even headaches. Always be mindful of the directions and warnings on the labels of your prescription medication. Always ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any concerns.

Dangerous Drug Interaction

Think about what other medication, supplements, or herbal remedies you are taking before taking any medicine. Some supplements and drugs are never meant to be mixed, as they can have negative interaction, increasing the risk of side effects.

Short Dosage

Taking too little medicine can reduce its effectiveness. Skipping a dose is just as bad as taking too much, as it won’t do anything to make your condition better. If you take more than one medicine, make a schedule and think about how you’re going to fit the prescribed meds in your daily routine. You can also put a list together. Jot down all your prescriptions, supplements, and OTC meds for easier organization.

Drug Duplication Overdose

Some patients take over-the-counter drugs and prescribed medications without reading the labels. This means that they don’t know what they are taking, increasing the risk of overdose. Keep in mind that some OTC drugs are combination pills that have a full dose of ingredients.

Promote medication safety and protect your health by taking your medicines the right way. Don’t hesitate to call or consult your doctor if you have any concerns about your medication.

Masking Off: 4 Chemical Peel Myths and the Truth Behind Them

Health Week December 2, 2014 at 6:11 am

Chemical PeelHumans have an innate desire to always look good and be in the best possible physical state, which is why many turn to cosmetic procedures. One of the common ones is chemical peeling. Many people, though, are cautious about this skin care treatment mainly due to the substances used.

There is quite nothing to fear about non-surgical treatments, however, as Booragoon Dental Clinic and other facilities noted that every dental or skin treatment has its risks and benefits. The odds just depend on the people who will be handling the procedure. Just to clear things and set the records straight, here are four myths about chemical peel treatment and the truth behind it.

Bad and Dangerous to the Skin

The word chemical in its name is probably the main reason most people fear it. Still, not all chemicals are bad for your skin. Even the medicines you take contain chemicals in it. The ones that are used in chemical peels are quite natural. Besides, physicians would not risk using harmful chemicals.

Leave With a Long Downtime

Chemical peeling is basically tearing off a thin layer of the skin to remove all impurities and allow a fresher skin to grow. Many people then think that after the treatment, they will be severely burned and skins will fall off. With the latest technology such as lasers, downtimes may be prevented.

Can Be Used At Home

There are online stores and local drugstores that sell chemical peel products. This makes people think that this treatment can be done at home. Health industry veterans, though, discourage using these products without proper knowledge. In spite being relatively safe, improper usage may still cause harmful effects.

One-time Solution

Many people think that as the layer of the skin with impurities is being peeled off, it will stay that way. Doing it once may provide visible results, but it must be followed up consistently. Depending on the seriousness of skin damage, you may need less if it is quite healthy.

Before you try any treatment, it is advisable to research on it beforehand. This allows you to know whether you are putting your money to good use or just wasting it. When getting a chemical peel treatment, make sure you go only to licensed facilities.