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The Best Colic Remedies for Infants: When Baby Won’t Sleep Through the Night

best colic drops

Greyerbaby / Pixabay

No matter how new or expecting parents load up on baby books, pediatric journals, and advice (solicited or not!) from friends and family, the real learning begins when baby finally makes it home.

That is when a parent is truly tested and prepared to face the ultimate fear: not being able to tell what is ailing your crying little one.

This is one of the oldest questions in human history: why is my baby crying!? When you have exhausted all other options, like an accidental injury, trapped gas, tummy problems, or disease (with a proper diagnosis from a doctor), you may find yourself at the end of your rope.

But there may be one other mysterious reason—colic, specifically baby or “infantile” colic.

While baby colic is not completely understood, if you are a frazzled, hollow-eyed parent turning to online help for your inconsolable child, we are here to help with causes, symptoms, and best colic remedies for infants. Who knows—you may even be able to sleep after this!

What is Baby/Infantile Colic?

Infantile or “baby colic” refers to the extended, inconsolable crying of an infant that is not caused by any apparent physical or psychological reason.

Colic is recognized when infants cry for at least three hours a day, more than three times a week, and usually for three weeks to a month. This “rule of three” is used because colic is more of an observation than a real diagnosis, according to pediatricians.

While baby colic may afflict up to 15-25% of babies, keep in mind that doctors only come to this conclusion when absolutely every other possible cause is eliminated, and usually when this behavior continues beyond the three-month mark.

This is because possible causes of this behavior are not fully understood, and diagnosing risks like fever and other illnesses should be your highest priority.

Signs Your Baby is “Colicky”

You have tried everything, but your baby’s crying is never-ending. Babies crying incessantly is common, but beyond the three-month mark, the strain on the parents may create an unhealthy cycle that could become more problematic than the actual crying itself.

While baby colic is rarely a sign your child is unhealthy, according to a clinical trial investigating baby colic, mothers who reported excessive crying to have a higher chance of experiencing post-natal depression or succumbing to infant abuse.

Plus the strain of a baby who will not sleep through the night and cry for hours on end can drive parents to their breaking points. This puts the whole family at risk of beginning a nasty cycle of neglect, desperation, and even abuse in the most extreme cases.

So if your child:

  • Does not stop crying after being distracted by something else (i.e. they are feeling pain)
  • Cries despite being healthy and unharmed
  • Cries forcefully and for no apparent reason at around the same time every day (especially the evening)
  • Seems tensed up all of a sudden (clenched fists, arched back, tight muscles)
  • Cries after feeding (and other digestive issues have been ruled out)

They may be experiencing baby colic, and it is advisable to take the proper steps to take care of your baby and yourself.

Speculating the Cause of Baby Colic

The jury is still out on what causes baby colic. In fact, some pediatricians theorize that this crying is just part of the natural adjustment process for a baby as they experience new sensations and information.

This isn’t enough for parents worried about babies crying well past the three-month mark. Some doctors suggest newborns don’t produce enough melatonin to properly sleep through the night, which explains why so many babies start crying in the evening or in the middle of the night.

The most popular theory is that colic is caused by gastrointestinal problems, excessive gas, or abdominal pain, but this is not necessarily always the cause for fussy babies.

Some doctors look to the psychological, suggesting parents that are prone to “perinatal anxiety and depression” may inadvertently be causing behavioral problems, and should seek their own treatment.

However, if you’re a parent struggling to soothe your child, do not blame yourself first. It cannot be emphasized enough that these theories are just that—theories. As long as you are seeking the proper treatment and the advice of your pediatrician, you are already on the right path.

The Best Colic Remedies for Infants

After making sure there is no other serious cause of intense crying, try these common remedies.

  1. Avoid cow protein, both in the baby’s diet and the mother’s diet (if breastfeeding.) Doctors recommend a week-long “trial” of sorts to see if your child is reacting badly to milk. This doesn’t mean your baby is lactose intolerant, but it may be causing a flare up because your baby isn’t done producing all the necessary chemicals to digest certain things. You may also (with the guidance of a doctor) introduce lactase drops to your child in case of breast milk or formula milk is the cause of all the fussing.
  1. Consider probiotics. While not all doctors agree on whether or not invisible digestive problems cause baby colic, probiotics might help settle your baby’s crying. Again, this is all to be done with the guidance and advice of a doctor.
  2. Help your baby pass gas. Gently take lay the baby on his or her back, raise the legs slowly, and see if they pass any wind. All the crying may trap a lot of air in their systems with no way out.
  3. Investigate possible psychosocial issues. If your new baby has strained you beyond your limits, you are not alone. Talk to your doctor about post-partum depression and other possible psychological factors.

Final Thoughts

Remember: do not give your baby any medication, hormone, or other unverified treatment without first consulting your doctor.

Sometimes, when it is late at night and your baby has not stopped crying for hours, you may feel utterly alone. You are not! Almost all parents go through confusion and feelings of helplessness at one point or another.

With the proper research, guidance, and perseverance, you and your baby will make it through the rougher parts of new parenthood just fine.

The Best Way to Burp an Infant: What You Need to Know!

Do you ever wish your baby could tell you exactly what was wrong? Endless hours of crying and fussing can even drive veteran parents up the wall.

Sometimes the answer is as simple as an unseen boo-boo or overstimulation. However, one of the most common reasons a baby cries because they have yet to be burped!

We have all seen parents with their child draped over their shoulder, patting and patting, willing the crying away.

But is that the best way to settle a baby’s tummy? We often do not give a second thought to the ways we are taught to do something, including tried and true back-patting.  If you are considering switching up your burping technique, we have investigated the best way to burp an infant.

The 5 Reasons Why Babies Need Help Passing Gas

Babies go through an amazing amount of development after being born, but especially during the first year of life. At such a young age, they have underdeveloped sphincters that make it difficult for them to regulate the gases that get trapped inside their bodies.

When babies get all this air stuck with nowhere to go, the air trapped inside can cause a lot of discomfort and a feeling of fullness that babies do not like. At a loss of how to stop the pain, babies will cry until their faces turn purple!

In fact, burping is recommended before, during, and after feeding because air can be trapped in their tummies in a variety of ways.

1. How Air is Trapped in a Baby’s Belly

Ever wonder why your baby sometimes cries for no reason? You may be overlooking how much air is trapped in their system. Babies can accumulate air by:

2. Digestion of Certain Foods

Did you know the food a mother eats can transfer into the breast milk she gives her baby? If you are a mother and you are eating a lot of carbohydrates (we can’t blame you—babies are a full-time job!) or things like broccoli, chickpeas, beans, or other usual farty suspects, this can transfer to your baby. The result is a build-up of gas that means you may have to burp your baby a little more often.

3. Swallowing Too Much Air During Crying

Sometimes babies start a vicious cycle of intense crying, swallowing a lot of air while they cry, and then crying more because more air means more gas build-up in their poor bellies.

4. Food Intolerance

You may want to compare baby formulas or test your baby for certain allergies, even if you are breastfeeding. Your baby may have temporary sensitivities to foods, most commonly dairy.

Only about 2-3% of babies have a milk intolerance, and most grow it out, but it is still a possibility that you should look into if your baby often cries and fusses after feeding.

5. Improper Feeding Technique

Try adjusting your usual breastfeeding position and see if your baby fusses less after eating. Some mothers have success burping their baby when they switch between breasts or positioning their baby so a proper latch is achieved to prevent too much air from interfering in feeding.

The Best Way to Burp an Infant

So what are the most effective ways to burp your baby? There are two tried and true positions that will get the job done for the most part.

Before you do anything, make sure you have a “burp cloth” handy! Babies don’t have as much control over their own burping, as previously mentioned, and that means what they burp up is just as unpredictable. A burp cloth held close by your baby’s face and pressed gently to pick up any spit-up should be just fine.

The first position to burp your baby in is while the child is sitting on your lap. Gently place them on your lap and support the front of the body and head with your hand and arm. Then, with the other hand, gently pat your baby’s back to encourage the gas to rise up and out. This also makes it easier to catch any surprises with the baby cloth!

The second position is probably the most common: Burping your child over your shoulder. Make sure the baby’s head is supported while you gently pat the back and wait for the burp to come up.

If your baby is very, very young and not used to burping yet, you may want to let him or her rest between burping sessions to avoid fussiness. Switching between these two positions and burping from different angles may also help bring up gas when solely doing one of them is not enough.

Reminders

Spit-up, vomiting, and passing gas is normal for young babies due to their immature digestive systems. However, if your child is vomiting extreme amounts of their food or even projectile vomiting, you should contact your pediatrician.

Similarly, if burping does not seem to be enough to relieve an upset baby of gas, make sure your diet is not the culprit if you are breastfeeding, and that your baby is not sensitive to the formula if you use a bottle.

Final Thoughts

Until your child is about four to six months old, burping and other techniques to relieve your baby’s gas should be the norm! Every child is different and may take less or more time to start passing gas on their own, but until they can confidently toot on their own, you have to be the wind beneath their wings. Happy burping!

Need to Know How to Clean a Diffuser with Alcohol? Look No Further!

Having a diffuser at your home is one of the best things you can do. The air quality and the whole mood of the room will benefit greatly from having one. This little device can help with your health, through the use of essential oils daily.

The diffusers are devices that work by spreading microparticles throughout the air, making these particles reach your airways, improving the mood and the environment of the room.

Diffusers are the best way to start using essential oils to have a better quality of life. You can begin using lavender, peppermint and eucalyptus oils. Of course, once you have a diffuser, you have to know how to do its maintenance.

That is when knowing how to clean your device is important. More often than not, people think their devices are broken, but in reality, they just need cleaning.

Now, it is not about just cleaning. You have to know how to do it properly. One of the best ways you do it, it’s using alcohol. It will not damage your device and will get the job done.

It is important to make sure you are using the right method for cleaning to make sure that the oil residue will not remain even after your cleaning.

Do it thoroughly and follow the instructions in this article, and you will be good to go. Here is how to clean a diffuser with alcohol.

How Do You Clean a Diffuser with Alcohol?

Alcohol is a powerful substance to clean thoroughly the impurities that accumulate in the diffuser and the oil residue itself.

It is important to clean your diffuser with something more than water or a wet cloth. These two methods might get some cleaning done, but they will not ensure that the diffuser is perfectly clean and ready to use.

Follow the following 5 easy steps to make sure that your device will get cleaned and will last the longest.

1. Turn it Off

First things first, power down your device before you do anything. You can never clean while it is turn on or before you make sure the electrical parts are out. If you do not follow this, you risk causing permanent damage to your diffuser.

Once you do that, wait five minutes so the diffuser can cool down. Do this to make sure that the water will not cause a thermic shock on the electrical part. This tip alone can make your diffuser last longer.

Then, at last, you remove the power adapter to make sure the water will not damage it. Make sure to do this precisely the way it is being described, and you should not have problems.

2. Get the Substance Ready

Now, it is time to separate a small portion of alcohol that you are going to use to clean the diffuser. You can do this while the diffuser is cooling down. Get the alcohol in a cup or something similar for you to apply it on the device.

It is important that you use just enough to clean the impurities. Sometimes it is normal for people to think that you are supposed to drown in lots of alcohol in every part of the device, but it is not.

Once the diffuser cooled down, it is time to begin cleaning it.

3. Apply the Alcohol

This is, perhaps, the most important step. Be careful to make sure you are cleaning the parts that do not involve the electrical pieces. Then, apply the alcohol, leaving it there for around 10 minutes to make sure that it will clean the impurities thoroughly.

This is important because too often the visible dirt gets removed but the device still does not work properly. It is important to make sure that the oil residue and dirt that prevents the perfect functioning of the device gets removed.

After you use the alcohol to make sure you remove everything, make sure that it is perfectly cleaned. Then it is time for the next step of rinsing all the parts that came into contact with the alcohol.

4. Rinse

Rinsing is the most fun part. Use the water to remove all the alcohol from the diffuser. This will not only remove the alcohol but also the dirt and oil residue.

A great tip is to use a wet cloth after you rinse the diffuser. The wet cloth will clean the corners of the device and make sure all the impurities are gone. This deep cleaning will get your device so clean that you will not have to clean it again for quite a while.

5. Dry

Pay attention to this final step. So far, you have done everything right. You have turned it off, prepared the substance, applied the alcohol, rinsed, and now it is time to dry it out.

Now, to make everything easier and faster, use a dry cloth to remove most of the water that remained. This will get your device ready to be used much faster.

The final tip though, it is to let the diffuser air it out naturally after you used the dry cloth. This is due to the fact that if you turn the diffuser on before it is completely dried, it may cause damage to the device.

Final Thoughts:

Now you have the necessary knowledge to make sure your device is thoroughly cleaned and that alone can save you a lot of money. You do not need to change devices all the time just because the dirt makes it look like it is broken.

Diffusers are great allies to essential oils. All you need is to keep it clean and the diffuser will work properly. If you follow these easy steps, there will be nothing to worry about.

Now, not only apply this useful information but also share this article to help everybody else make sure that their diffusers are properly cleaned.

Also, leave a comment below sharing your experience cleaning yours. Oto s always great to hear from you.

Great Milk Alternatives for Lactose Intolerant Stomachs (5 Best Dairy Alternatives)

best lactose free milk brands

whitesession / Pixabay

Do you, or someone you know, suffer from lactose intolerance. Do you need to find milk alternatives? Just because you are not allowed to have milk, does not mean you cannot find a milk substitute. In this article, we will look at 5 different milk alternatives for lactose intolerant stomachs, and how you can still enjoy delicious milk alternatives.

What Is Lactose Intolerance?

Before we begin, lets quickly recap on the concept of lactose intolerance. Lactose intolerance is a digestion problem which simply means that a person’s body is unable to digest the sugar in milk. Whilst some people cannot have any milk products, other people may find that only one or two items of dairy, trigger their lactose intolerance.

There is nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to lactose intolerance. In fact, this is quite common and can be treated via substituting milk for alternatives.

If you think you may be lactose intolerant, or experience any of the following signs, you should try swapping out your regular milk for an alternative – just to see if it makes any difference.

Who Usually Suffers From Lactose Intolerance?

Anyone can suffer from lactose intolerance, but those at risk more tend to be new-born babies and adults. Those more at risk include:

  • Adults of Caucasian ethnicity are more likely to have lactose intolerance compared to other ethnic minorities
  • People who have major stomach or bowel surgery
  • People who suffer from coeliac disease
  • People who suffer from diarrhea

As you can see, being lactose intolerant is quite common, and there is nothing to be concerned with. All that you need to do is treat these symptoms by cutting out the cause – in this case, milk.

The Signs of Lactose Intolerance

Below we have included a quick list of some of the signs to look out for with regards to lactose intolerance:

  • Stomach cramps or stomach pains
  • Flatulence
  • Bloated stomach
  • Feeling sick
  • Stomach rumbling
  • Diarrhea

Of course, the signs above may only be on a small scale or could be quite severe. If you do experience any of the above symptoms, especially after consuming a dairy product, we recommend that you switch to milk alternatives (or ask a doctor for their advice).

The 5 Milk Alternatives for Lactose Intolerant Stomachs

Okay, so now that we have a good understanding of what lactose intolerance is, and what to look out for, now is the time to look at the 5 best dairy alternatives.

1. Almond Milk

Almond milk is a plant milk which is manufactured from almonds. This still contains that same, creamy texture as regular milk. Almond milk is a popular choice when it comes to lactose intolerance, even veganism. This is a healthy option which is free from cholesterol and lactose.

Almond milk comes in a variety of ways – sweetened, unsweetened, plain, vanilla, and chocolate. There are many options for all of you to try out. You are bound to find one that you enjoy.

2. Soy Milk

This type of milk substitute is made from soybeans and water. Soy milk is a great way for you to get added protein and potassium into your diet.

Again, this is another plant-based milk. There are loads of health benefits when it comes to drinking soy milk:

  • Prevents prostate cancer
  • Promotes weight loss
  • Strengthens blood vessel integrity
  • Improve your blood lipid profile

Not only does soy milk benefit those who cannot stomach dairy, it also offers great health benefits.

3. Coconut Milk

Coconut milk is another milk-free product that we regularly see on our shopping market aisles.

Whilst not to be confused with coconut water, coconut milk comes from the meat of a coconut. This substitute still offers a creamy texture. One of the key benefits of drinking coconut milk (which not many people know about) is that it contains triglycerides – a fat that helps to enhance your metabolism which helps with weight loss.

4. Rice Milk

This sounds a bizarre one, but yes, there is actually a thing called rice milk. Rice milk is made from rice grains and is often unsweetened unless you sweeten otherwise.

Rice milk is a popular choice for vegetarians and vegans too because it contains no animal product. It is also a tasty way to try and become healthier.

If you are feeling adventurous, you can even attempt to make your own rice milk!

5. Lactose-Free Milk

Lactose-free milk is exactly the same as the milk you have been drinking (up until now) except for the addition of lactose. Lactose-free milk will prevent your symptoms of lactose intolerance, all the while still feeling like you are drinking your regular milk.

The difference in taste between lactose milk and lactose-free milk is that lactose-free milk tends to taste sweeter.

Below we have outlined a few of the health benefits associated with lactose-free milk:

  • Improved digestion
  • Good for your bones
  • Promotes a healthy heart
  • Lactose-free milk tends to taste sweeter (for all of you who like that extra sweet taste!)

Final Thoughts

Whether you have been diagnosed with lactose intolerance, or you think you suffer from signs of lactose intolerance, it is important that you find a substitute quickly.

The longer you wait, the unhealthier you will feel. Finding the right things to eat and drink is important for your body. Your body will reject things that it thinks is harmful to it (which is why you get these symptoms of stomach pains, sickness, and/or diarrhea.

In this article, we have provided lots of different milk substitutes which you can try instead of your regular milk. Of course, not all of these will suit you. You may not like the taste of nutty kinds of milk (almond and coconut), or you may not enjoy the sweetness of other milk substitutes (such as lactose-free milk).

It really is all about trial and error. Finding the right substitute may take a bit of time, but after some time, you will soon start to realize the benefits of swapping your milk.

Are McDonald’s Chicken Nuggets Healthy? Are They Really as Bad as People Say?

mcdonalds chicken nuggets calories

Pexels / Pixabay

We all love a good fast food restaurant from time to time. People tend to believe that a stigma is associated with eating food from the likes of McDonald’s, KFC, and Burger King.

In this article, we are going to discuss the following: Are McDonald’s Chicken Nuggets Healthy? Or are they as bad as what some people say?

The Stigmas of The Fast Food Industry

Due to the overconsumption of journalism and television, the fast food industry is often depicted as unhealthy and slightly on the grotesque side.

How true is this statement? From the likes of you and I, we hear so many different things about McDonald’s chicken nuggets – on one end of the spectrum, we have people who believe that they are relatively healthy to eat, whereas others believe quite the opposite.

So, who do we believe?

Of course, every fast food industry comes with a stigma, and to you and I, we know that eating fast food is not the healthiest of choices. Does this choice really hurt from time to time?

Let’s take a look at some information about McDonald’s, and whether or not we should believe this controversial rumor that their chicken nuggets should be a no-go.

Mcdonald’s Chicken Nugget Nutritional Facts

The best way to sum up whether chicken nuggets from McDonald’s are good or bad is to look at the nutrition facts.

Based on 10 chicken nuggets, the following facts can be obtained:

  • There are 440 calories;
  • 55% of those calories come from fats;
  • There are 26 grams of total carbohydrates;
  • There are 75 milligrams of cholesterol.

As you can see, the nutritional facts for McDonald’s chicken nuggets do not look promising. Although they are not great, you could state that there are still a lot of other foods out there equally (or worse) than chicken nuggets from this fast food establishment.

The Perception of Chicken Nuggets

Turning the above perception on its head, a popular slimming establishment brands McDonald’s chicken nuggets as being ‘healthy’. So, who do we believe now? McDonald’s is said to be branding this slimming establishment in order to promote certain McDonald’s food choices to its customers.

This is slightly bizarre (and may even be concerning) if, in actual fact, McDonald’s is as bad as people say.

The Mcdonalds Chicken Nugget, Revamped

Back in 2016, McDonald’s was said to be revamping the popular chicken nugget choice in the hopes to provide a healthier food choice. Even with this change, McDonald’s is still heavily scrutinized by its customers and health experts with regards to determining how healthy they are.

Based on this revamp, McDonald’s chicken nuggets are now said to be:

  • Made from 100% white meat chicken;
  • Made with no artificial colors
  • Made with no artificial flavorings
  • Made with no artificial preservatives.

The stigma that occurred several years ago was that chicken nuggets were not actually chicken at all. These stigmas left customers feeling unsure and slightly scared. If it was not chicken inside the nuggets that their kids were eating, what was it?

Two ingredients, which have now been removed, which puts our minds slightly at ease when ordering McNuggets for ourselves or our children. The two ingredients that have been removed were:

  • Tertiary butylhydroquinone = this is a chemical used to preserve food and form a butane (a slightly light fluid);
  • Dimethylpolysiloxane = an anti-foaming agent made from silicone to create a particular texture and preserve the product.

The Reality…Are McDonald’s Chicken Nuggets Healthy? Does It Even Matter?

Everyone who goes to a fast food restaurant goes with the knowledge that the food is not great for them. Yes, you could probably stay at home and make a healthy dinner, but when you are out and about, a quick McDonalds is an easy option.

There is nothing wrong with this. In fact, everyone falls into this category. Even if they do not go to McDonald’s, they might end up ordering in a Chinese or Pizza. There is no difference.

Any fast food establishment will be rigged with this known fact that it is an unhealthy choice. However, as human beings, we have the right to choose what food we eat. If, on a Friday night, you want to order in, or take the kids out to McDonald’s, isn’t it up to you?

The reality is, that all food bought as processed comes with the same stigma. If you are not willing to make everything from scratch (and let us be honest, who has the time?) then buying such products is inevitable.

It is a quick, easy option that many of us do because it saves us time, not to mention money! It is still remarkable how the government and experts want to create a healthier society, yet healthier food choices come at a significantly higher price. Where is the logic in that?

Final Thoughts

There is a huge controversial debate surrounding fast food restaurants, particularly when it comes to McDonald’s. As one of the leading fast food restaurants, we as customers want to know what we are actually eating.

However, the challenge still remains that there is so much information about, that it makes it hard to establish whether or not McDonald’s chicken nuggets are really as bad as people say.

Our advice is this, whilst any fast food is said to be unhealthy, there is nothing wrong with having a McDonalds every now and then. We do not recommend that you go out every night and order 10 chicken nuggets at a time, but as long as your diet is monitored, what is the harm?

How to Lower Morning Blood Sugar Naturally (8 Easy Steps For Reducing Blood Sugar Levels)

If you are a diabetic, or your body struggles with maintaining your blood sugar, chances are, you may need to maintain your blood sugar from the minute you wake up.

Generally speaking, blood sugar levels are often at their highest in the morning. So, the moment you wake up, you should be looking at ways as to how to lower morning blood sugar naturally.

Let us guide you through how to reduce your morning blood sugar in a safe and natural way, to ensure your day gets off to a good start.

Why Is my Blood Sugar Level so High In The Morning?

Have you ever wondered why your blood sugar level is so high in the morning? Well, there are a number of different reasons as to why this might be. However, the main reason, particularly for those of you that are diabetic, should know that your glucose levels rise whilst you are asleep. There is nothing you can do to stop this, it is something that has to happen.

Normally, the process of glucose rising during sleep (also known as gluconeogenesis) does not affect people with normal sugar levels. The same process still applies, but a person who does not suffer from diabetes is able to control this.

How to Lower Morning Blood Sugar Naturally?

If you are diabetic, there is probably medication that you are taking to reduce your blood sugar levels.

However, there are things you can be doing yourself in order to lower and maintain your blood sugar. We all know that natural means best, which is why we have outlined a few key ways to lower your blood sugar levels in a natural way.

Below we have outlined 8 different, yet highly effective, ways in which you can help to reduce your blood sugar levels in the morning.

Bear in mind that everyone is different, and the below methods may or may not work for you. It is all about experimenting with the below suggestions to find one that works well for you!

1. Walking

One of the easiest and cost-effective ways in which you can reduce your sugar levels naturally is via walking. Exercising allows for your blood sugar levels to find the right balance, and ensure that they are not too high.

Even the gentlest of exercises such as walking can help to increase your insulin’s sensitivity, which in essence means that your body is able to use the sugar levels running through your bloodstream.

2. Protein and/or Fat Snacks

You can try this method either the night before or first thing in the morning. Eating a protein or fat snack prior to breakfast helps balance out your hormone levels and allows for your digestive system to work quicker.

Types of snacks that are said to work well in relation to reducing sugar levels include:

  • Cheese
  • Tablespoon of apple cider vinegar
  • A handful of nuts

Of course, the above list is not extensive, but it does give you some idea of what we are on about!

3. Eating a High Protein Breakfast

Similar to the above suggestion, easting a high protein breakfast is vital if you suffer from diabetes. By choosing to eat a breakfast full of protein helps to lower the amount of sugar entering your body.

We recommend steering clear from breakfasts containing carbs. Although eating a slice of toast is fine, carbohydrates tend to have some sugar in them, so just be aware when monitoring your morning diet.

Morning foods that we suggest include:

  • Peanut butter
  • Vegetable omelets
  • Protein smoothies
  • Fruit smoothies

4. Drinking Lots of Water

Everyone should be doing this already, and we cannot stress enough just how important it is to stay hydrated. Making sure that you are drinking plenty of water will ensure that your sugar levels stay within healthy limits.

The benefit of drinking water is that it allows your blood to be constantly rehydrated with reduces your blood sugar levels.

Remember that drinks such as coffee, tea, energy and fizzy drinks, should all be avoided if you wish to control your sugar levels.

5. Controlling How Much You Eat

It is not just about what you eat, but how much you eat. Controlling your portion sizes is another simple way of reducing your calorie intake and ensuring that your blood sugar levels do not spike at any point during the day.

The best ways to control how you eat include:

  • Using smaller plates
  • Avoiding restaurants where you can eat as much as you want
  • Keeping a food journal
  • Measuring portions before cooking

6. Controlling Stress and Anxiety

One of the biggest things that can increase your sugar levels is stress, anxiety, and depression. Maintaining your stress levels is vital if you wish to maintain your blood sugar levels.

Relaxation techniques such as yoga or Pilates is a great way to get rid of any unwanted stress or anxiety. This is a perfect way to start the day – not only will it make you feel less stressed, but you get the added benefit of exercising, too!

7. Get Enough Sleep

Getting enough sleep is vital for anyone who wants to live a healthy life. Without enough sleep, growth in hormones and increases in cortisol levels will affect your sugar levels.

In order to wake up with lower blood sugar levels, make sure that you focus on getting enough sleep the night before.

8. Speak With A Doctor

If you have any concerns about your blood sugar level, realize that none of the above methods are working for you, speaking to a professional could help.

Even if you are not yet experiencing high blood sugar levels, chances are, you are probably doing things in your life that puts you at risk later in the future.

Getting some advice about blood sugar levels, and how to keep them controlled will help you to live a better, happier, and healthier lifestyle.

Final Thoughts

Knowing the signs to look out for with regards to sugar levels is imperative. Ensuring that your lifestyle is as healthy as possible will go along way in controlling your sugar levels. Knowing how to lower morning blood sugar levels is a great way to kickstart everyday in a positive, healthy, and active way.

10 Tips on How to Be a Good Stay at Home Dad (Keep Yourself Sane)

stay at home dad responsibilities

dagon_ / Pixabay

Why are stay-at-home dads so popular nowadays? Numerous studies found that father-child interactions, during early stages of life, are correlated with positive outcomes on the infant’s cognitive development.

Also, other theories show how infants react better when lift up by their fathers instead of their mothers.

Here are 10 tips, from experience fathers, on “How to Be a Good Stay at Home Dad” and contribute positively to your infant’s emotional and physical wealth.

Perhaps for too long, the society functioned on a universal principle that the father’s role is to provide the family with financial support, while the mother has, exclusively, the role of raising and educating children. How harmful and limiting is this gender distribution?

Many families manage to do well in the absence of a father or in cases where the father does not involve enough in raising children, however, while this “doing well” is seen on the surface, on the long-term, these issues have powerful negative impacts on children, leading to serious illnesses like:

  • Damaged emotional security
  • Behavioral disorders characterized by the incapacity of establishing durable interpersonal-relationships
  • A decrease in overall quality of life, engaging in bad entourages
  • Increased stress causing health problems like cardiovascular illnesses and even cancer

Raising an infant is a vital and, in the same time, a difficult task, with major effects on both children and parents’ life; therefore, it is desirable to have both parents equally involved in the raising process.

10 Tips on How to Be a Good Stay at Home Dad

1. Discuss with Your Partner

Deciding to become a stay at home dad is a big deal. Besides the effort of raising your child, the emotional stress might appear to be overwhelming, in some cases. Discuss with your partner when you are dealing with insecurities or when you are trapped and do not know what to do anymore.

Another fact you should consider is that you will not be the one bringing home “the bucks”. Make sure you feel comfortable with this new status.

2. Embrace a New Career

Being a stay at home dad is not a part-time or full-time job, is more of a “24 hours, 7 days a week” kind of job.

Your breaks will be limited to non-existent and you might want to start with a training period in terms of housekeeping and cooking. But it is worth it, as nothing can be more delightful than seeing your child grow.

3. Become a Professional Stay at Home Dad

If this “stay at home dad” thing is scary, gain some parenting skills confidence by taking specialized courses. The internet is a great, at hand source of free information on parenting matters, so, grab a coffee and let’s see how to change a nappy like a pro.  

4. Remember “Me” Time

Whether you are a brand new or experienced daddy, raising a child is overwhelming no matter how many times you’ve done it before. The little one is a real energy bomb, so make sure you take regular breaks in order to channel his energy in a positive manner.

5. Join Dad Groups

It is vital to find veterans going through the same “hell”, as they are the living proof that you can also do it. Sharing experiences, with other comrades, might be funny, de-stressing and, also, productive, because you can learn effective tips and tricks on how to improve your parenting abilities.

6. Take Regular Walks

Going for a walk is beneficial for both the father and the child. Of course, you should avoid crowded places, like stores or malls, as you will expose your infant to an army of viruses. Instead, if the weather allows you, take a walk in the park and enjoy some fresh air.

Feed your baby with some natural vitamin D offered by shy sunbeams. Just remember to keep the little one away from direct, long sun exposure.

7. Cook Together

If your child’s age is appropriate for cooking experiences, start preparing together small meals or snack breaks. Transform the boring cooking into a fun teambuilding activity. It’s a great and exciting way to give, the little one, some sense of responsibility. Do not forget to reward him.

8.Alternate Penalties and Rewards

All children need guidance and discipline, not as punishment, but more to set reasonable limits. Remember, it’s a new world for them and you’re their first guidance into this unknown.

Remind them of the consequences of their actions, with gentle penalties, and try to reward them for proper behavior. Try to keep a balance between penalties and rewards. Dads who are calm and fair, patiently demonstrate love for their children.

9. Make some Room for Reading

In a world where the television dominates the life of kids, it is very important to get your toddler accustomed to reading. In the early ages of his life, begin reading him children’s books to contribute positively to his mind and practice his imagination. Later on, make sure you keep alive the passion for reading.

10. Become a Superhero

Summer is a great season to escape into an adventure and make memories together. Start with treasure hunts or explore new places. Even though you’re a stay at home dad, it does not mean you have to literally stay at home.

Your child will be extremely happy to look back and remember the wonderful and exciting moments spent together, during summer vacations.

Final Thoughts

The father plays an equally important role in the child’s life. If the mothers have a natural instinct on how to raise their toddlers, for most fathers this experience is new and challenging. Remember you are no Mister Perfect and mistakes are allowed. Whenever trapped or insecure, just ask for some help.

Being a stay at home dad is about enjoying the precious gift of seeing your infant grow; therefore, try to ignore what other people might say.

The 10 Best Jobs That Don’t Drug Test (Jobs That Can Help)

This may sound like a bizarre one, but you would be surprised by how many people have searched the following question: are there are jobs that do not drug test?

Well, much to your surprise, there are an array of jobs in a range of job sectors that do not drug test their employees. In this article, we are going to take a look at some of the best jobs that don’t drug test.

Before we begin with our extensive list of jobs that do not require a drug test, let’s take a look at why some companies and job sectors DO drug test their employees.

Why Do Some Jobs Use Drug Tests?

One of the main reasons as to why some companies do drug testing is to ensure the safety and well-being of their employees. Local, state, and federal laws permit employers to implement drug testing in their workplace.

Whether an employer decides to drug test future employees or their current employees, they are well within their rights to do so, and they are even able to do this randomly.

Below we have outlined some detailed reasons as to why some companies and/or businesses choose to conduct drug tests in the workplace:

  • Safety- Organizations that require their employees to work with heavy machinery, drive, or set an example to the public (i.e. the army, the police, the fire service) need to ensure that safety standards are met.
  • Regulations- Some federal and state regulations require employers to drug test their employees. Agencies such as the Department of Transportation require all employees to undertake a drug test if they have a job role within any form of transportation.
  • Prevention- Other companies use drug tests as a way of avoiding people who use illegal drugs.
  • Public Relations- Some organizations use drug testing as a way of showing integrity to the public.

Why Do Some Businesses Choose Not to Drug Test?

Okay, so turning the last discussion on its head, now let’s take a look at why some businesses choose not to have drug tests.

Some companies think that drug testing causes many disadvantages. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons as to why this might be:

  • The cost of conducting a drugs test is quite high. Statistically, it has been proven that employees who test positively for drugs tend to be quite low. So, it can be considered a waste of money.
  • Trust goes a long way between a company and its employees. If an employee feels as though they are not being trusted, what does this say about the relationship between themselves and their employers?
  • Concerns about employee privacy is another concern.

As you can see, the above list is just a few reasons as to why some businesses choose not to take a drug test.

Companies That Do Not Use Drug Testing

There are a few companies that are completely against drug testing. Whatever there reasons, they choose not to use drug testing in their employment (prior to joining or whilst working there).

Below we have outlined a few major companies that might surprise you with regards to not drug testing:

  • Google
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Yahoo
  • Gap
  • Apple
  • Whole Foods Market

The above list is not an extensive list, and therefore should be used as a guideline. There are lots of other companies that do not require their employees to agree to a drugs test.

Now that we have had a look at some of the companies that do not require a drug test, let’s now take a look at some of the main job roles that do not often use drug testing.

The 10 Best Jobs That Don’t Drug Test

  • Restaurant Manager

This is a very busy job and therefore does not leave much room for random drug testing.

This job role is renowned for its outstanding customer service, attention to detail, planning, and organizing.

  • Accountant

Although some accountancy firms will require you to take a drugs test, becoming your own boss as an account means that you can steer clear from drug tests.

  • Chef

This is another high-end job that requires a lot of concentration. It is fast-paced and restaurants tend not to be worried about drug testing their employees. If a chef was intoxicated, chances are, this would show up in their work.

  • Event Planner

Another job role that does not often require drug testing is an events planner. What you do in your spare time is of no one’s concern. Of course, you want to ensure professionalism at all times, and thus event planning is a job where, if you were taking drugs, someone is bound to notice!

  • Web Designer

Web designers is another job role where drug testing is not often conducted. Web designers are far more interested in attaining the correct skills in order to create a fabulous website.

  • Photographer

Again, you can become self-employed as a photographer, meaning no one is going to be keeping an eye on what you do outside of work.

  • Journalist

This is considered to be another professional job role. Whilst come major companies still screen their employees with random drug testing, there are quite a few media companies that have now ditched the drug test process.

  • Writer

Similar to the above point, writer’s are generally self-employed and therefore are not subject to random drug testing. However, many well-established writing industries still do use drug tests.

  • Real Estates

Most real estate contractors are self-employed, so this is another great way to avoid random drug testing.

  •  Personal Fitness Trainers

If you become a fitness trainer outside of a well-established gym, then you can be your own boss. Thus, this means that no one will be paying to conduct a drugs test on you (unless you randomly give yourself a drugs test).

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, this article has provided you with an extensive list of the types of jobs that you should be looking for if you wish to avoid drug testing.

Whilst we cannot guarantee this list to be 100% the case, there are lots of jobs that do not require you to undertake a drug test. We recommend that you if you want to stay away from drug testing jobs, then you should definitely be avoiding jobs in the public sector such as the police, army, and the fire service.

Is Fabric Softener Bad For You? (The Pros and Cons)

is fabric softener bad for clothes

RyanMcGuire / Pixabay

In today’s world, there are many arguments as to whether or not fabric softener is bad for you. We have all been provided with this notion that fabric conditioner is a necessity to ensuring the best-washed clothes.

In this article, we are going, to sum up, the advantages and disadvantages of using fabric conditioner in order to answer the following question: is fabric softener bad for you?

What Is Fabric Softner?

Fabric softener is a combination of chemicals that are used to coat the surface of clothes with a thin layer of lubrication.

The aim of the fabric conditioner is to make clothes feel smoother and helps them resist the build-up of static electricity.

There is an array of fabric softener makes available to you:

  • Downy
  • Beads
  • Snuggle
  • Gain
  • Tide
  • Cuddly
  • Swavitel
  • Optimo.

Fabric softener comes in many different forms including:

  • Pellets
  • Crystals
  • Bars
  • Single-dose packs
  • Liquid
  • Gel

Should I Use Fabric Softner?

Fabric conditioner is a great way to soften your clothes which ultimately makes your clothes feel more comfortable to wear.

The benefits of using fabric softener include:

  • Making your clothes less harsh
  • Making your clothes less scratchy
  • Makes your clothes smell phenomenal

The Benefits of Using Fabric Softner

Apart from the above list, there are many more benefits of using fabric softener when it comes to washing and cleaning your clothes:

  • Fabric conditioner is a great way to keep your clothes looking newer for longer;
  • Fabric softener keeps clothes materials such as wool in perfect conditioner;
  • Fabric softener softens the fibers of the material to help make them smooth;
  • Maintain clothes’ elastically;
  • Fabric conditioner helps to reduce creases in the material;
  • Fabric conditioner adds a great scent to your clothes, allowing your clothes to have a fresh smelling feel to them all day every day.

But What are The Disadvantages? Truly, Is Fabric Softener Bad For You?

Like the title of this article suggests, there is a huge debate as to whether fabric softener is actually good for you.

Fabric softeners are often packed with chemicals which affect your health. This is something that almost everyone is completely oblivious too. Not only that, but the chemicals found in fabric softeners can also have effects on the environment via polluting the air in both the home and outside.

Why Should You be Avoiding Fabric Softner?

There is a lot of research about, particularly from health experts and organizations, that suggest that people should be skipping the fabric softener stage of washing and cleaning clothes.

The fabric softener that you are using could contain lots of different phthalates which are nasty chemicals being instilled in your clothes.

Below we have also outlined a few other reasons as to why fabric softeners should be avoided:

  • QUATS = Quats, or quaternary ammonium compounds are chemicals used to make your clothes feel softer and more wearable. These chemicals are known to trigger asthma attacks and are thought to have a toxic implication to reproductive systems.
  • FRAGRANCES = As mentioned, phthalates are often chemicals found in fabric softeners
  • PRESERVATIVES AND COLOURS = preservatives and colorings are often used in fabric softener. Again, this contains hazardous chemicals such as methylisothiazolinone.

Hopefully, the above list gives you some indication that fabric softener is not all that it is cracked up to be. Instead, there are lots of chemicals end ingredients added to the fabric softener to do its intended job. However, what many people fail to realize is the added consequences of using such products.

Alternatives to Using Fabric Softner

You might be thinking if I stop using fabric softener, what is going to make my clothes smell good? Well, there are many alternative methods that you can try out in order to substitute your fabric softener for a more safer and eco-friendly product.

Below we have included a few ideas that you can use to trial and error to find the right method for you:

  • Add half a cup of distilled white vinegar to your washing during the rinse cycle. Your clothes will not smell like vinegar, but they will provide that soft feeling.
  • Tumble drying your clothes (not too much) can help reduce crease lines and add an extra softness to them. Just remember that this can backfire if you leave your clothes drying for too long, or leave them in too long after the cycle has ended.
  • Another alternative is to use 100% wool dryer balls. These are a great way to soften clothes and reduce any static between materials. This is also a safe way to create clothes that are still sensitive-friendly, especially for babies.

Our Honest Opinion

So, now that we have weighed up the benefits and pitfalls of using fabric softener, your choice is ultimately down to you. We cannot tell you what to do, or what your best answer is, but the type of person you are will be able to make up your own mind.

After researching into fabric softeners, we have found it quite alarming with regards to the number of people who have suffered rashes and itches in relation to fabric softeners.

Of course, this may just be because a person’s skin sensitivity is significantly greater than yours or mine, or it might be that the chemicals found in fabric softener could be damaging our skin as opposed to trying to comfort it.

Final Thoughts

By now, you should have a clearer understanding as to the effects of using fabric softener. Although every one of you readers has your own opinions and can choose to use fabric softener, it is clear that there are some of implications and factors as to how fabric softener should be reconsidered.

The Best Side to Sleep on for Heartburn (The Side That Matters!)

 sleeping in recliner acid reflux

C_Scott / Pixabay

It is a fact that people with heartburn find it not easy to get a restful sleep. Acid slips into the esophagus when you fall asleep in the wrong position creating discomfort and therefore resulting in irritation and insomnia (Source: Everyday Health).

It is approximated that as many as 10 percent of Americans have episodes of heartburn (pyrosis) every day, and another 44 percent experience symptoms at least once a month. There is an explanation why this is fairly true.  Gravity helps to keep the esophagus clear of food and digestive fluids, but when you lie down,  you lose due to gravity and acid.  Therefore, reflux easily flows back into the esophagus.

Experiencing heartburn can be bothersome at any time, but worse yet is nighttime heartburn which carries its own set of problems. Research has shown that nighttime heartburn increases the risk for esophageal cancer. This is because by lying in a reclined position, it allows digestive acid to remain in the esophagus longer.

People with heartburn are said to be 11 times more likely to develop esophageal cancer than those who did not have nighttime symptoms according to an American Gastroenterological Association study. It is therefore vital to find the best side to sleep on for heartburn and avoid a serious health condition.

Sleeping Habits

Most of us rarely consider the position we sleep in, we formed our sleeping habits early in life and we simply can’t imagine sleeping any other way. An extensive research into the impact of our sleeping positions suggests that we may benefit from assessing whether or not our chosen sleeping position is truly ideal. This is because we spend a confound one-third of our lives sleeping.

This is a very long time for those who spend sleeping in one single position and many hours spent exerting pressure on certain parts of the body. This habit will undeniably have an effect on your body. In fact, lying in an awkward position that is not ideal can significantly impact your health and general well-being.

Other than worsen your heartburn, the poor sleeping position has been linked to many other complaints including fatigue, sleep apnea, muscle cramps, headaches, impaired circulation, and digestive problems.

The Best Side to Sleep on for Heartburn?

“Sleeping on the left side puts pressure on the lower esophageal sphincter, because of where the organs are situated”, says sleep and pediatric medicine specialist Dr. Priyanka Yadav, DO of the Sleep for Life Center in Hillsborough, New Jersey (The sphincter is the hatch that food passes through as it goes to the gut. When the sphincter is stressed, the burning stomach acid creeps back up making an irritation on your throat.)

When lying on your left side, ensure your arms are resting comfortably in front of you. Also, bend your knees into a semi-fetal position by curling your legs slightly towards your upper body. In case you are having a really bad heartburn, roll onto your back and use a few wedge-shaped pillows to prop up your chest and head.

You can, as well, slip bricks under your bed frame to raise the head of your bed by up to six inches.  This will allow gravity to work in your favor and prevent heartburn. Sleeping on your left side position has proved to be the best way to sleep when you experience heartburn.

Some of the sleeping mistakes that you must look to avoid are:

  • Sleeping on your right side, this places the stomach above the esophagus, therefore, relaxing the lower esophageal sphincter allowing acid to flow into the esophagus.
  • Propping yourself with regular pillows, this only raises your head and not your entire upper body which is needed to effectively control acid flow.
  • Lying down flat on your bed, this allows acid to easily reach the esophagus.

Final Thoughts

 

Long-term heartburn can lead to serious health problems and should not be left untreated. Fortunately, sometimes it takes a few lifestyle changes to prevent this nighttime ordeal. There are also other several practical steps that you can take to stop heartburn: Stay upright after eating, eat a light dinner, and avoid late-night snacking.

After taking all the necessary precautions and you still experience burning, change your sleep position and lie on your left side to offer some relief. The practice of altering your sleep position to control heartburn symptoms is called Positioning Therapy and in many cases, it is extremely effective.

There is no reason why that heartburn should prevent you from getting a good night’s rest, consider following this expert advice to keep the symptoms under control and help you sleep soundly.

If heartburn still persists, schedule an appointment to see a doctor. To find the source of your heartburn the doctor can perform tests and prescribe the right treatment to get the condition under control. So take action today!