Category Archives: Health and Fitness

Quick and Healthy Pasta Salad Recipes…

For Brunch

by Adrian T. Cheng

For brunch, we always prefer a meal that’s neither light or heavy. Some people might find a green salad too light but a pasta dish too heavy. Combine these two dishes and you’ll have the perfect brunch meal – one that would satisfy your appetite just right!

Here are 3 quick and healthy pasta recipes perfect for brunch:

Italian-Style Cold Pasta Salad

What you need:

  • 10 cherry tomatoes
  • 2 cucumbers, chopped
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1 3/4 cups rotini pasta
  • 1 cup Italian-style salad dressing
  • 3/4 cup pitted black olives, sliced

Cook rotini pasta to al dente in a large pot of lightly salted water according to package instructions. Drain pasta in a colander and place under cool running water in the sink to cool. When ready, mix together rotini pasta, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, onion, black olives and Italian-style salad dressing in a large salad bowl. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.

Delicious Mac-Tuna Salad

What you need:

  • 3 cups macaroni
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 can tuna, drained
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup Italian-style salad dressing
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Cook macaroni to al dente according to package instructions. Drain and place in a large salad bowl along with Italian-style salad dressing. Stir to coat pasta with dressing. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. When ready, add celery, onion, tuna, mayonnaise, sour cream, salt, garlic powder and black pepper to the bowl. Mix ingredients well. Chill for at least 1 hour before serving.

BLT Delight

What you need:

  • 1/2 kilogram sliced bacon
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 cups medium seashell pasta
  • 1 1/2 cups light Ranch-style salad dressing

Cook seashell pasta to al dente according to package instructions. Drain, rinse under cool running water then set aside. In a skillet, cook bacon over medium-high heat until brown and crispy. Remove from heat and drain on paper towels. Mix together tomatoes, onion and Ranch-style salad dressing in a large salad bowl. Add cooked and pasta to the bowl and mix to coat with dressing. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours to overnight. Crumble bacon over pasta salad before serving.

If you want to enjoy a quick yet healthy pasta salad for your next brunch, any of these recipes will surely get your approval!

Adrian T. Cheng is a food blogger who promotes healthy eating. He has written numerous posts and articles about natural herbs and spices, shared countless of delicious and healthy recipes and reviewed kitchen accessories that are affordable yet of quality. You can view Adrian’s posts about going green and other nutrition tips and tricks [http://www.kuisiware.com/] on his page.

Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Adrian_T._Cheng/2109020

Furnish Your Home Without Breaking Your Bank

Furnishing your house can be pricey.

One interior decoration blog estimated that decorating a living room from scratch could cost between $14,400 to almost $50,000!(1) The numbers for the dining room, bedrooms, and kitchen are similarly high. Furnishing an apartment averages about $6,000.(2) But is there a better way? How can you save some cash if you’re trying to furnish your home? Here are a few helpful tips to guide your decorating process!

Photo by Negative Space on Pexels.com

Plan and prioritize
Start by taking stock of what furniture you have that can be used in your new home. Some of it might work in your new home, some of it might not. Try to get an idea of what existing furniture will go where and make note of new items you’ll need.

Arrange your list of new items in order of importance and buy those first. Mattresses for your bedroom? Top of the list. Abstract modern art to hang in your bathroom? Maybe hold off on that until you’ve taken care of the essentials!

Paint
Concerned that your kitchen is a little drab? Worried that your table cloth doesn’t match your dining room? You might be surprised how far a new paint job will get you! It might be a more budget-friendly way to spice up your living situation than tossing all your old furniture out the door, especially if you do it yourself. Things like tables and wooden chairs are all potential candidates for a new coat of paint, as are the walls of your home.

Photo by Breakingpic on Pexels.com

Shop smart
But there’s no doubt that at some point you’ll need to get a new piece of furniture. What then? Cough up and pay a ridiculous price? You might be surprised by the resources available to acquire furniture at a bargain. Local thrift stores can be treasure troves for things like chairs, coffee tables, and bookcases. Craigslist and eBay are also worth investigating, as are estate and garage sales. And you can always scour the curbs for a free sofa if you’re feeling bold!

Furnishing your new house can be fun. It’s a chance to unleash your creativity and make your home a special place. Just make sure you follow these budget-friendly tips before you start indulging!

(1) https://www.kathykuohome.com/blog/budget-breakdown-how-much-does-it-cost-decorate-a-room/

(2) https://medium.com/@ColonialVanLinesInc/how-much-does-the-average-person-spend-on-furniture-8a0a6ba179ca

How Financially Literate are you?

April 1st marks the beginning of Financial Literacy Month in the United States. Many countries around the world have months dedicated to increasing financial literacy. Tell us in the comments of on social media when this month is in your part of that world.

Why the big push for financial literacy (whatever that means; don’t worry we’ll explain it on the next paragraph)? Well because billions of people around the world, YES Billions with a B, are not financially literate and it’s a contributing factor to poverty and economic inequities. Many countries claim to want to fix this and have gotten behind these once a year movements to do something. And no the self-proclaimed best country in the world is not doing better than everyone else when it comes to having financially literate citizens…

The reality is that many people who live in the US are not financially literate or put another way they don’t fully understand the language of money. That lack of understanding is what leads to having a financial mess on your hands. Let’s be clear though – IT’S NOT THEIR FAULT!

Nowhere in the education system in this country is financial literacy CONSISTENTLY taught. That one glaring absence leads to almost half of the population not knowing things that are key to keeping your bank accounts and overall finances in the black.

https://howmoneyworks.com/marieedwards/challenge

Think we’re kidding? Take the quiz on the website above and then post your score in the comments below if you’re brave. Are you financially literate?

If you get a score that you feel is too low to post, here’s how you change it. Register for this free course happening TONIGHT at 8 PM EST and increase your financial literacy in record time!

How to Select Fresh and Ripe Fruit

Selecting ripe fruit is easy if you know what to look for. These tips will help you select ripe fruit that is ready to be taken home and eaten.

🍇Grapes

If white grapes are ripe they will have a yellow tint to them. Red grapes will have a deep color and every grape will be about the same shade. While still in the store shake the grape stalk. If more than a grape or two fall off they are overripe and will not taste as good.

Kiwi

The skin of the kiwi should be free from bruises. Softly press on the kiwi and if it gives slightly it is ripe. If you are able to push into this fruit and it has a mushy feel then it is no longer good.

Apples

To select a ripe apple look at the skin of the apple. It should be free from bruises and nicks. Apples with a lot of green, besides the Granny Smith apples, are not ripe. The apple should be firm to the touch as well. It should not feel hard but it should not have a mushy texture either.

Oranges

There is an easy way to tell if an orange is ripe. Run your hands around the fruit. It should have a plump feel to it. The surface of the orange will be smooth. It should also feel heavy when held. If the orange passes the above testing then give it a light squeeze. The fingers should be able to bounce back without a problem. The orange should have an oval shape. It if is too round then the orange is under ripe and will have a bitter taste.

Tangerine

To tell if this fruit is ripe look at the color. If there is some green on the fruit that means that it is not ripe. Give the tangerine a light squeeze. Like the orange, if the fruit is ripe, it will bounce back and will not be mushy. The tangerine should also have a bit of a heavy feeling to it as well.

Strawberries

To find the best strawberries; they should be plump, have a deep red color, and be shiny. The cap should be securely attached. The berries should be medium sized since they will contain less water than larger berries. Avoid berries that are green or have a pale color to them.

Blackberries

These berries will not be glossy and will have a little bit of a dull look when they are ripe. The best time for blackberries is the midsummer. The berries should be plump and dark.

Blueberries

Blueberries are at their best from June to August. When purchasing these berries they should be blue in color and should not even have a tint of red to them. The berries will have a bit of a silver look that is shimmery. That means they are ready and at their peak. These berries will not continue to ripen once they are picked so it is important to select carefully when purchasing them.

Plum

When looking for a ripe plum it should be heavy, but it should not be too soft. If the plum is very soft it is overripe. When squeezing the plum it should have a little bit of a give to it and not be mushy. The plum should also have a deep color.

Cherries

Cherries will have a deep, almost black, color when they are ripe. The cherry should be firm to the touch. It will also be juicy when bitten into. The stem should be firmly attached to the cherry but it should twist off without a problem.

Avocado

Avocados have become very popular over the past couple of years. They are full of healthy fatty acids that are good for the body. When purchasing a ripe avocado there are some things to look for. The avocado should have a very deep color, almost black. If it is green then it is not ready. The avocado should yield to some gentle pressure when squeezed. If it is too soft or too firm then it is not ready to eat.

These are some ways to tell if these popular fruits are ripe and ready to eat. By giving these fruits these simple tests it will help you, as a consumer, determine that you are getting the best tasting fruit.

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Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Bob_Tom/2362899



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3 Ways to Teach Your Children how to Save $

A study discovered that most children have established their money habits by age 7.¹

Before they might know what a 401(k) or mortgage even are, their financial future is already starting to take shape. It’s never too early to teach your kids the wisdom of budgeting, limiting their spending, and paying themselves first. So the sooner you can instill those lessons, the deeper they’ll sink in!

Fortunately, teaching your kids about saving is quite simple. Here are two common-sense strategies that can help you instill financial wisdom in your children from the moment they can tell a dollar from a dime!

Give your child an allowance
The easiest way for your child to learn how money works is actually for them to have money. If it’s within your budget, set up a system for your child to earn an allowance. The more closely it relates to their work, the better. Set up a list of family chores that are mandatory, and then come up with some jobs and projects around the house that pay different amounts.

What does this have to do with saving? The simple fact is that spending money you receive as a gift can feel totally different than spending money that you earn. Teaching your children the connection between work and money instills a sense of the value of their time and that spending isn’t something to be taken lightly!

Teach your child how to budget
Budgeting is one of the most essential life skills your child will ever learn. And there’s no better time for them to start learning the difference between saving and spending than now! The same study that revealed children solidify their spending habits at age 7 also suggested they can grasp basic financial concepts by age 3!

So when your kid earns that first 5 dollar bill for working in the yard, help them figure out what to do with it! Encourage them to set aside a portion of what they earn in a place where it will grow via compound interest. Explain that the longer their money compounds, the more potential it has to grow! If they’re natural spenders, help them determine how long it will take them to save up enough to buy the new toy or game they want and that it’s worth the wait.

Start saving for yourself
Remember this–the most important lessons you teach your children are unconscious. Your kids are smart. They watch everything you do. Relentlessly enforce spending limits on your kids but splurge on a vacation or new car? They’ll notice. That’s why one of the most critical means of teaching your kids how to save is to establish a savings strategy yourself. When you make and review your monthly budget, invite the kids to join! When they ask why you haven’t gone on vacation abroad for a while, calmly inform them that it’s not in the family budget right now. Model wise financial decision making, and your children will be far more receptive to learning how money works for themselves!

The time to start teaching your kids how to save is today. Whether they’re 2, 8, or 18, offer them opportunities to work so they can earn some money and give them the knowledge and resources they need to use it wisely. And the sooner your kids discover concepts like the power of compound interest and the time value of money, the more potential they have to transform what they earn into a foundation for future wealth.

1- “The 5 Most Important Money Lessons To Teach Your Kids,” Laura Shin, Forbes, Oct 15, 2013, https://www.forbes.com/sites/laurashin/2013/10/15/the-5-most-important-money-lessons-to-teach-your-kids/?sh=2c01a4956826