How to lower blood sugar with diet

How to lower blood sugar with diet

High blood glucose levels can damage the small arteries and nerves in your eyes, kidneys, heart, brain and feet over time. If you have diabetes, high blood sugar is defined as higher than 130 mg/dL when fasting and above 180 mg/dL two hours after eating, unless your doctor has specified a different target for you. Managing your blood glucose levels closely is the key to healthy living with diabetes.

If your blood glucose levels are high, don’t skip a meal; rather, try to understand the causes behind your high reading and do some damage control by eating healthy and exercising.

The Cause

If your blood glucose levels are higher than they should be, start by determining what caused the rise. Did you eat more carbohydrates than usual? Carbohydrates found in grains, potatoes and sugar increase your blood sugar levels the most, and eating too much can result in high glucose levels. Are you more stressed than usual or are you feeling sick? Stress and illness also increase your blood sugar levels. Did you skip your usual walk or did your forget to take your medications? Both exercise and prescribed medications decrease your blood sugar levels. Keeping a journal of what you eat, how you feel, how much you exercise and the medications and supplements you take can help you figure out the cause of your high blood sugar.

Skipping Meals

Skipping meals can actually increase your blood glucose levels. If your body doesn’t get a regular supply of energy from food, your liver may panic and start releasing glucose into your bloodstream. This glucose can come from stored liver glycogen or can be newly synthesized from protein. Skipping a meal can cause you to have high blood glucose levels, so don’t skip a meal in an attempt to lower high blood sugar.

Healthy Meal

Instead of skipping a meal, eat a balanced meal containing protein. Protein can stimulate your pancreas to produce insulin, the hormone needed to lower your blood glucose levels. If your blood sugar levels are high, have a healthy meal at your regular meal time. Avoid high-carbohydrate foods, such as pasta, rice, breads, desserts and pastries, that could further elevate your blood glucose. Instead, have a healthy meal based on non-starchy vegetables, such as broccoli, mushrooms and onions; a serving of protein from fish, chicken or meat; and healthy fats from avocado, nuts or olive oil. Continue monitoring your blood sugar levels at regular intervals to measure the impact of your meal.

Regular Exercise

Exercise is the best strategy to help you manage your high blood glucose levels. Whenever you move by walking, cycling or gardening, the muscles of your body use up some of the extra glucose circulating in your blood. Exercise also makes your cells more sensitive to insulin, which can contribute to bringing your blood sugar levels back in the healthy range. Walking at a moderate pace is the best exercise for most people. Stay properly hydrated and keep an eye on your blood sugar levels.

  • American Diabetes Association: Tight Diabetes Control
  • USDA: National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference

Aglaee Jacob is a registered dietitian. She has experience working with people who have diabetes, cardiovascular disease, hypertension and obesity issues. Jacob obtained a bachelor of science and a master of science, both in nutrition, from Laval University in Quebec City, Canada.

Alcohol is a substance that alters the mind when consumed. There are many reasons for wanting to purge the body of alcohol, such as getting rid of a hangover. There are three ways that alcohol leaves your body: through your breath, sweat and urine. Your metabolism is responsible for breaking down the alcohol and getting it out of your system. Even if you don’t have a high metabolism, there are ways to get the alcohol out of your system quickly 1.**

If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.

Drink one 8-ounce cup of water for every alcoholic beverage you consume. This will give your body time to break down the first drink and hydrate you as well.

How to Get Rid of Alcohol in Your Body

Eat a healthy meal before consuming alcohol. The food will soak up most of the alcohol you consume and help your body get rid of the alcohol faster 1.

Take two ibuprofen or acetaminophen and drink 40 ounces of water before going to sleep after your alcohol consumption.

How to Get Rid of Hangover Shakes

Drink water first thing in the morning and eat a piece of bread to help absorb alcohol that’s left in your system.

Do some light exercise to boost your metabolism and get the alcohol out of your system 1.** If you can walk or run then do so for at least 20 minutes. Work up a good sweat and then take a hot shower.

Continue to drink lots of water and perform moderate exercise for the next 24 hours to rid your body of the alcohol.

Perform an at-home alcohol test to make sure the alcohol is out of your system.

Normally blood sugar levels should be less than 126 milligrams per deciliter, or mg/dl. But in cases of high blood glucose, which is also known as hyperglycemia, levels are 160 mg/dl or above. The condition, which characterizes diabetes, develops because your body doesn’t produce any or enough insulin, or it cannot properly use the insulin it produces. One drink that will help lower blood sugar is green tea.

What Is Green Tea?

Like other teas, green tea comes from the camellia sinensis plant. However, unlike oolong or black tea, green tea is made from unfermented leaves and contains the highest amounts of antioxidants known as polyphenols, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. Antioxidants help to fight free radicals that damage cells and DNA and contribute to aging and disease.

Green Tea and Diabetes

Can a Diabetic Eat Cottage Cheese?

Green tea has long been used to regulate blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. It may also play a role in preventing type 1 diabetes or slowing its progression once you have it. The University of Maryland Medical Center reports that clinical studies have shown that green tea supplements in powder form can reduce hemoglobin A1c levels in people with prediabetes. Hemoglobin A1c levels indicate how well your blood sugar is under control.


In one study published in the journal “BMC Pharmacology” in 2004, a team of Chinese and Japanese researchers found that green tea improved glucose metabolism in healthy participants. The drink also lowered blood glucose levels in diabetic rats. The researchers indicate that a blood protein may be responsible for green tea’s ability to lower blood sugar, but they add that more studies are necessary.

Amount and Form

Caffeine Content in One Cup of Coffee Vs. One Shot of Espresso

Green tea is available in tea bags, leaf, liquid extract or capsule form. Your best choice is a supplement as they provide standardized amounts of green tea polyphenols. A cup of green tea contains about 50 to 150 mg of polyphenols. A general recommendation is two to three cups of green tea daily, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. For green tea extract, 100 to 750 mg of polyphenols is recommended.

Side Effects

When taken in high doses, green tea can cause a range of side effects due to its caffeine content. Some side effects include dizziness, heart palpitations, headaches, insomnia and loss of appetite. Also, green tea can interact with medications such as blood pressure, chemotherapy and heart drugs, antibiotics and the cold medications or weight-loss products that contain phenylpropanolamine. Seek more advice from your doctor about regulating your blood sugar and taking green tea.

How to be good with money

In the weeks before the clock strikes midnight on January 1st, consider improving your personal finances. Laura covers seven tips to manage money better and hit your financial goals this year.

How to be good with money

The New Year is when most people resolve to get their health and wealth back on track. But there are some great ways to manage money better that can only be accomplished before the year ends.

While I can’t help you resist holiday sweets or a second trip to the buffet, I can recommend simple ways to improve your personal finances before January arrives.

7 Ways to Manage Money Better at Year-End

  1. Make the most of your medical insurance.
  2. Drain your flexible spending account (FSA).
  3. Contribute the maximum to your retirement plan at work.
  4. Boost your retirement savings rate.
  5. Don't forget your required minimum distribution (RMD).
  6. Make charitable donations.
  7. Review your emergency documents and account beneficiaries.

Use these seven tips to manage money better and hit your financial goals this year.

1. Make the most of your medical insurance.

When it comes to medical expenses, year-end is the time when you can squeeze more value out of your health, dental, and vision policies. Your benefits and deductible are tied to an annual schedule.

If you’ve already met your annual deductibles, you can save money by scheduling appointments and paying for healthcare goods and services before the end of the year. Otherwise, starting on January 1, your deductible resets.

In other words, take advantage of the time each year after you reach your deductible so you can get your insurance company to pay for as much of your medical expenses as possible. Delaying appointments means you could end up paying more than you have to.

But don’t go overboard on appointments because plans typically have a maximum number of visits for services such as doctor checkups, dental cleanings, physical therapy, and prescription eyeglasses. If you’re not sure if you’ve maxed out your insurance benefits for the year, ask your doctor's or dentist’s office to find out what’s covered.

Take advantage of the time each year after you reach your deductible so you can get your insurance company to pay for as much of your medical expenses as possible.

2. Empty your flexible spending account (FSA).

If you have an FSA, it’s also linked to the calendar year. These spending plans are offered by many employers to help you save on a pre-tax basis for certain expenses—such as child care and medical bills—not covered by insurance.

However, there’s a deadline to spend your money in an FSA each year or you forfeit most of the excess. This is known as the “use it or lose it” rule. The cutoff varies by company, but it’s typically December 31.

How to do walking meditation

Definition – What does Yoga Walking Meditation mean?

Yoga walking meditation is the walking meditation practiced in the yoga tradition. Walking meditation is less popular in the yogic tradition than it is in Buddhism, but there are yogic walking practices advocated by yoga gurus such as Swami Sivananda and Swami Satyananda. They either coordinate pranayama or mantras with walking. This can make them more challenging than other forms of walking meditation due to the effort and focus needed to control the breath while moving. It may be helpful for the yogi to practice the pranayama while seated and master it first before combining it with walking.

Yogapedia explains Yoga Walking Meditation

Before any yoga walking meditation is begun, it is recommended that the yogi calms his/her breathing and begins the pranayama while stationary before starting the walk. There are several different techniques suggested for yoga walking meditation:

Breathing 4-4-4-4. In this, the inhalation, retention, exhalation and hold on empty all last for four steps. The number of steps can be adjusted to the individual’s capacity, but it should always remain in the same pattern; for instance, 5-5-5-5 or 3-3-3-3. More complex variations can be introduced that involve splitting the inhalation or exhalation into four mini-breaths or puffs of air.

Breathing 1-4-2. This pattern is more challenging because the length of the breath is different for inhalation, retention and exhalation. It should follow a pattern of inhale for one step, retain the breath for four steps, then exhale for two steps and repeat. Again the number of steps can be adjusted up to lengthen the breath, but this must be done in the correct ratio; for instance, 2-8-4 or 3-12-6.

Mantra. This practice is known as chankramanam and it involves coordinating the mental repetition of a mantra with steps. It may be that a short mantra is used for each step, or a longer one spans several steps.

During These Times of Stress and Uncertainty Your Doshas May Be Unbalanced.

To help you bring attention to your doshas and to identify what your predominant dosha is, we created the following quiz.

Try not to stress over every question, but simply answer based off your intuition. After all, you know yourself better than anyone else.

How to do walking meditation

Often, the concept of meditation conjures the image of a stationary, cross-legged yogi surrounded by candlelight, solitude, and plenty of time. But when your days are full and your mind is cluttered—flitting from errands to emails to the latest family drama—that type of meditation might seem unappealing or downright impossible. In reality, meditation can be done anywhere, including while standing or even walking.

(Customize your own walking plan with Walk Your Way to Better Health and lose up to 5x more belly fat!)

“When starting a meditation practice, one can feel daunted by the expectation to sit still and totally quiet the mind. Even though neither of these need be true for a seated practice, the idea that they are mandates often keeps people away from it,” says Nicole Katz, a structural yoga therapist and co-founder of the New York studio Yoga 216. And that’s where walking meditation comes in.

Walking meditation is also a good pick for anyone whose thoughts seem to be racing a mile a minute, because if your mind is overactive, your body often follows suit, says Katz. And while it might sound counterintuitive, moving your body can make it easier to tame your cluttered mind, says Ted Meissner, a mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) teacher and a manager at UMass Medical School’s Center for Mindfulness.

“The mind can only focus well on one complex task at a time, so paying full attention to even the simple process of walking removes a bit of momentum from mentally spinning.” (Psst! Anybody can do these three quick meditations.)

A different path to calm

So what does a walking meditation look like? That’s really up to you. “There are many ways in which someone might approach walking meditation, from a light and informal awareness of one’s surroundings while hiking or walking the family dog to a formal meditative practice for personal or even spiritual aspirations,” says Meissner. The common thread, however, is that you should aim to be “wakeful and present, instead of on auto-pilot.” If your mind wanders, that’s OK, but the goal is to bring your attention back to the “the sensory experience of the present moment,” he says.

If you’re not sure where to start, keep it simple. “For a gentle and informal walking meditation, just go for a walk!” says Meissner. “Give yourself permission to not have to do anything else; just be as aware as you can of your surroundings and inner experience.”

Check out these amazing benefits of walking outside every day:

And don’t worry if you’re short on time. “ Almost every human will walk at one point in the day—to work, to a meeting, to grab a coffee,” says Yunha Kim, founder of the app Simple Habit, which offers 5-minute meditations designed to integrate mindfulness into the most stressful parts of your day.

If you’re looking for a more formal, guided experience, scout out a location where you’ll be able to practice in safety and absolute solitude. It can be a wooded area, a quiet neighborhood street, or even a space the size of a yoga mat. Make sure to turn off phone notifications and anything else that might distract you. Pop in your headphones and listen to one of the many guided meditations available through apps like Headspace and Simple Habit, or try this sequence designed by Meissner specifically to clear the mind:

How to tell a guy teacher you are having your period

Tips on How to Tell a Guy You’re On Your Period Without F.

16 Fun Ways to Tell a Guy You’re on Your Period

Explaining to guys what a period is can be tricky as they can be really freaked out by the words blood, from the vagina. Chances are that they probably have a wrong preconceived idea of what exactly a period is which leaves you in a bad place in trying to explain it. Here are some way to tell a guy that you’re on your period.

Tips on How to Tell a Guy You’re On Your Period Without Feeling Embarrassed

Think carefully before you tell him.

It is best to consider how long you have been dating your boyfriend because periods are personal and it could be something you may not want to share with someone you haven’t known for very long. Some boys are not mature, especially if they are in high school. Plus it might make him uncomfortable or he may not know how to react to it.

If you have been dating him for a while then you could bring it up in a casual conversation. Try not to make a big deal about it either because it really isn’t a big deal at all.

Consider the times you told him awkward or personal stuff in the past. How did he react? If he reacted in a negative way then you may want to postpone telling him for a while.

Why do you want to tell him?

Think of reasons you want to tell him. Do your periods prevent you from being in a happy mood when you’re around him? Do they stop you from going out on dates and participating in other general activities with him? You can be straight forward with him and tell him or keep it to yourself, it’s entirely fine.

Use correct terms.

Don’t use indirect terms such as “Aunt Flo” or you “monthly guest” or “visitor” when you have to face how to tell a guy you’re on your period. He may have no idea of what you are talking about, especially if he is quite young or immature. Being indirect about your period could create a misunderstanding and make things awkward for you.

Use clear language and direct references to your period and make sure he knows it’s a personal issue you’re choosing to share with him. You could start off by explaining to him how you get moodier on your periods and make you a bit more sensitive.

Don’t take it to heart.

Boys can be intimidated by periods, partly because they don’t understand it so don’t worry if he starts freaking out or shies away from the topic if you do decide to bring it up.

If you do choose to discuss your period with him and he responds saying something like ‘erm, okay’ and doesn’t really say anything else, he may just be shy or clueless so don’t worry about it. If he responds negatively, laughs or tells other people, do not get upset because he is the immature one and not you. Your period is an indication of good health so never think it’s gross or weird.

How to crochet a cupcake stitch

How to crochet a cupcake stitch

Last year I came across a blanket design that used a cupcake stitch for the border. I always kept this cute border in mind for future projects. Today I finally had time to play around with this stitch. Below you can find the steps for making the cupcake stitch border.

YouTube video
I’ve made a video tutorial explaining how to make the cupcake stitch.

– 3.5mm hook (US E hook)
– Fine yarn that matches the hook size. 4 colors: pink, white, brown, grey

Abbreviations/stitches you should know:
Ch: Chain
Sc: Single crochet
Dc: Double crochet
Dc cluster: Yarn over (YO), insert hook in next stitch, YO and pull up a loop, YO and draw through 2 loops on hook, repeat in the next 4 stitches, YO and draw through all 6 remaining loops of the hook
**: repeat between **
(): amount of stitches at the end of the row

Start with grey (your basic color above/below the cupcake)
Row 1: Chain a multiple of 6
Row 2: Ch 1 (turning chain), sc in each stitch

Change to brown
Row 3: 1DC, ch 1 (you can also chain 4), skip the next 2 stitches, *2DC in next st,1DC in next st, 2DC in next st, chain 1, skip 3* around to last 3 st (last cupcake made), ch 1, skip 2, DC in last st.

Change to pink
Row 4: ch 1, *5sc in the front loops only, 1sc around the ch-1 space*, repeat till end and sc in last stitches (front loops only)

Change to white
Row 5: DC + ch 4 (or ch 7), skip 2, 5 DC cluster in the next 5 stitches, *ch 5, skip next st, 5DC cluster* around till end, ch 4, skip 2, 2DC in last st.

Change to your starting color again (in my example grey)
Row 6: ch 1, 2sc, 4sc around the first ch-4 space, *6sc around the chain bow from the previous row* repeat till end, 4sc around last 4 ch-space, 2sc
Row 7: DC (or ch 3), *DC around*

You should have the same amount of stitches as where you started with.

How to develop self esteem through god

How to develop self esteem through god

If you have low self-esteem, now is the time to change how you feel about yourself and alter your life. Low self-esteem affects your job, your health, and your relationships. Although self-esteem and self-confidences are often used interchangeably, they are different concepts. Self- esteem is a healthy belief in oneself and respect for one’s worth as a person. Self-confidence is the feeling of trust in one’s abilities, qualities, and judgment. So, self-esteem is reliant on one’s sense of worth as a person. To increase your self-esteem, you should understand these 12 principles. Before long, you will become self-confident and have a greater appreciation of yourself.

1. Visualization

Start your conformation process by visualizing yourself. What do you see as your positive personal characteristics? How about those negative ones? Now, visualize as the person you want to become. Visualization helps you accomplish a change in thought from negative to positive.

2. Self-Analysis

In order to make positive changes and gain self-esteem, you must make constructive alterations in yourself. This self-analysis enables you to climb the stairs ahead of you. Self-analysis also allows you to improve on your thoughts and feelings. Furthermore, self-analysis permits you to get to know yourself better. You will recognize your negative feelings and understand better what you can do to alter these.

3. Choose Your Battles

Not everyone is good at art. Not everyone can play a guitar. Match your talents with your goals. If you have a degree in business, apply for jobs in that field. If you try to go outside your comfort zone, you will be disappointed and have low self-esteem.

4. Be Objective

Part of self-esteem building involves knowing your limitations. Have a realistic assessment of what you can and can’t do. This provides a sound basis for self-confidence and improved self-esteem.

5. Build on Success

If you still are wondering how to gain self-esteem, learn to build on your small successes. Start with something easily achieved and go from there. Little victories prepare your self-esteem to tackle the bigger ones.

6. Be Persistent

Don’t give up, keep going. You need to have patience and determination to work toward success. It is not an overnight process. Be persistent and don’t give up.

7. Expect Some Failures

Along the road to success, there will be many small failures. Not everything you do to build your self-esteem will work out for you. Keep a long term perspective and avoid drastic reactions to failure. Acknowledge what went on and go on.

8. Trust Your Own Value System

Know that you can’t please everyone. If you try, you leave yourself behind. Establish your own way of measuring progress and trust these values and actions. Once you’ve identified troubling situations or conditions, notice how you feel about them. Your thoughts and beliefs may be negative, positive, or neutral. Figure out what is best based on facts or reason.

9. Avoid Criticism

Don’t undervalue yourself and self-depreciate. This self-criticism could result in low self-esteem. Know your faults and strive to change them. Also, don’t allow others to berated and belittle you. Avoid people who tell you that it can’t be done.

10. Stay Positive

Use hopeful terminology and statements. Pessimism is often a self-fulfilling prophecy. Tell yourself that while something may be tough, you can handle it. Associate yourself with other positive people. Some criticism is can be beneficial, but avoid people who are pessimistic in personality.

11. Don’t Compare Your Life to Others’ Lives

Many who are studying how to gain self-esteem compare themselves to others. This is the worst thing you can do. Some people are born lucky, and as the old saying goes, “comparisons are odious.” It is bad for your self-esteem to view your life as inferior to someone else’s life. Focus on what you have going for you, and don’t dwell on others.

12. Renew your Self-Esteem Each Day

Encourage yourself by giving yourself credit for making positive changes. Establish a daily practice to support and build your self-esteem. Consider yoga, positive affirmation, or meditation. Meditation increases self-esteem by giving you a real sense of worth. When you meditate, you observe your inner thoughts and feelings. This technique of relaxation enhances the chemicals of the brain that promote a sense of well-being.

How to tenderize pork

Most Pork Chops sold today, in the opinion of many cooks are too lean and therefore have no flavour. For this reason, many cooks prefer blade chops because they are the one chop with a lingering bit of fat in it still

Pork Chops can be sold boneless or bone-in. Chops on the bone will cook up moister than those that are boneless.

Pork Chops are actually supposed to be tender and moist. More often than not, though, they land on plates dry and cardboardy because they were overcooked. Many people remember being served shoe-leather Pork Chops that were so tough even the family dog couldn’t make headway on them.

This can easily happen owing to their thinness, their increasing leanness, and owing to a misunderstanding of the health safety concerns behind pork (see Nutrition below.) The various pork boards in North America adopted for a while an advertising slogan which was “the other white meat,” but with what people did to Pork Chops at home, the slogan could well have been “the other dry meat.”

If you are cooking thinner Pork Chops, be mindful that they will dry out extra quickly. Lean chops that are 1/2 inch (1 1/4 cm) thick are almost too thin to grill. They will dry out almost the second they hit the grill. It’s okay, though, to grill a chop of that thickness if it’s a blade chop, which will have bone and more fat in it to help keep the meat moist.

If you are frying very lean Pork Chops, you need to put oil in the frying pan to compensate for the fat that would have rendered out of them in the old days, or they will stick and burn. Fry uncovered, unless your recipe advises otherwise.

It’s okay to even pull Pork Chops off the heat a minute or two before they are done, then cover them while you get the rest of dinner ready. They will keep on cooking for a few minutes off the residual heat they have absorbed.

Cooking Tips

For a 3/4 inch (2 cm) thick chop, fry or grill 4 to 5 minutes per side;
For a 1 inch (2 1/2 cm) thick chop, fry or grill 5 to 7 minutes per side;
For a 1 1/2 inch (4 cm) thick chop, fry or grill 8 to 10 minutes per side.

If a Pork Chop has a strip of fat around it, leave it on to keep the meat moist — you can trim it off at the table. But to prevent the chop from curling during cooking, you may wish to slash the strip of fat every inch (3 cm) or so.


One of the reasons Pork Chops are overcooked is fear of the trichinosis parasite, which is killed at 137 F / 58 C.

Owing to the vagaries of people’s thermometers (home cooking thermometers, remember, aren’t regulated by any standards boards), government health boards recommend cooking pork to 160 F / 71 C. The problem is, those 23 degrees (13 degrees Celsius) make a huge difference — because at that temperature, pork is overdone and starts to dry.

Using new “Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point” (HACCP) protocols, some food safety organizations are now saying that pork should be cooked to 145 F (63 F) and held there for 15 seconds; others are saying 155 F / 68 C for 15 seconds.

Literature & Lore

“A chop is a piece of leather skillfully attached to a bone and administered to the patients at restaurants.” — Ambrose Bierce (American journalist. 1842-1913)

How to tenderize pork

Tougher cuts of beef can be tenderized by pounding thin slices into even thinner slices, using a meat mallet. The pounding action flattens the meat and breaks up some of the fibers and connective tissues, making the beef a bit more tender.

How to tenderize pork Cooking the tenderized beef rapidly with high heat cooking methods is an important factor in keeping the meat tender. The flattened beef slices may be broiled, grilled, or sautéed, which provide excellent results. How to tenderize pork

A powdered meat tenderizer can be purchased and sprinkled on tougher cuts of beef. The tenderizing powders contain enzymes that help break down the tougher fibers of the meat. The enzymes are often produced from pineapple and papaya extracts.

How to tenderize pork

Another option for tenderizing beef is with the use of a marinade. Soaking various cuts of beef in a marinade is a good method for adding flavor as well as to help tenderize the meat.

A proper marinade should contain an acidic ingredient such as vinegar or wine, oil such as olive oil, and seasonings such as herbs and spices. Citrus fruit juices may be used in place of the vinegar or wine to provide the acidic ingredient that is necessary to soften the tissues of the meat.

Fresh pineapple juice is an excellent ingredient for a marinade because it contains one of the most powerful natural tenderizers, the enzyme bromelin, which is very efficient in breaking down protein. This enzyme is destroyed if it is heated, so when using pineapple juice for the purpose of tenderizing meat, the juice must be fresh. (Any previously cooked or canned pineapple juice has no effect on tenderization.)

How to tenderize pork

There are several important points to remember when using a marinade:

  • Quantity: The marinade should totally cover the meat in order for it to work effectively.
  • Soaking Time: When using tender cuts of beef, a soaking time of 2 hours or less is all that is required because the marinade is used basically to flavor the meat. Tougher cuts of beef should be soaked in the marinade for several hours or overnight in order to tenderize the meat as well as flavor it.
  • Refrigeration: Always marinate beef in the refrigerator.
  • Proper Containers: Since the marinade contains an acidic ingredient, reactive containers such as metal bowls should not be used. It is best to use containers such as glass or plastic bowls or plastic bags that can be sealed.
  • Reuse: The marinade should not be reused for any other purpose because of the bacteria that may be present from having been in contact with the raw meat. The only way the marinade can be reused is to boil it thoroughly to be used as a basting liquid or as part of a sauce for the meat.

An additional option for tenderizing beef, as well as adding flavor to it, is with the use of a rub. A dry mix of herbs and spices are applied to the raw beef and are allowed to permeate and flavor the meat over a period of time, usually overnight in the refrigerator. An endless variety of rubs can be prepared for beef depending on the types of flavors that you want to add to the meat.

  • Application: A rub mixture can be rubbed onto the meat, but the moisture from the meat can cause the dry ingredients to stick to your hands. The best results often occur when the ingredients are sprinkled evenly on all sides.
  • Ingredients: Some of the ingredients that may be used for a dry rub include black pepper, cumin, chili powder, crushed red pepper, celery seed, garlic powder or fresh crushed or minced garlic, salt, and brown sugar.
  • Paste Rub: A small amount of liquid may be added to the mixture in order to create a dry paste, which may be preferred in some cases. Some of the liquids that are often used are vinegar, cider vinegar, wine, or fruit juice.
  • Sugar Usage: Use sugar sparingly because it will melt and burn during the cooking process, especially if the beef is grilled or broiled. Too much of the burnt sugar will provide unpleasant results. Only a small amount of sugar is necessary to provide adequate flavor.
  • Results: Both the dry rub and the paste will form a flavorful crust when the beef is cooked. Rubs are most often used with beef ribs that will be grilled or barbecued, but they can be used with almost any cut of beef.

Barding consists of wrapping thin layers of beef fat or bacon around cuts of beef. Some of the fat melts during the roasting process, which adds moisture and flavor to the meat and serves as a natural tenderizer. The remaining fat can be removed after the meat is cooked.

If you plan to roast a lean, tough cut of beef rather than braise it, then barding may be beneficial. Lean cuts of beef, such as cuts from the round, which are among the muscles responsible for locomotion, are usually tough because often used muscles are less tender than seldom used muscles. Muscles that are constantly worked also lack internal fat, known as marbling.

Suspension muscles from the center of the animal, located in the rib and loin area, are very tender because they do not move as much as muscles in the front or rear portions of the animal. As a result, beef cuts from the loin and rib never require barding.

For a loooong time, I avoided buying and cooking pork chops.

That’s because I had been turned off so many times by tough, stringy, dry pork chops that were just about as tender as a shoe sole!

How to tenderize pork

I knew the meat was inexpensive, and it was the perfect dinner solution when you couldn’t decide between poultry or red meat. But no oh no, I was not going to be pulled into the trap of leathery pork chops…

Well now I eat pork chops at least once a week!

And that’s because I have found the method of cooking pork chops that yields juicy, tender, decadent, perfect meat every time.

How to tenderize pork

This method is called “reverse searing,” and it involves baking the pork chops first for 15-20 minutes to make them tender and juicy on the inside, and then searing them in screaming hot oil to get a crispy browned exterior.

And then, like we do with all meat, we’ll let those delicious pork chops rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.

How to tenderize pork

Best of all, this method of cooking pork chops is customizable to what you have in your pantry or what you’re feeling tonight.

You can brine or marinate the chops for 20-30 minutes in an acidic solution before baking to up the flavor.

Do you have a few cloves of garlic or some fresh herbs sitting around? Smash them and sauté them in the hot oil in the pan before searing the chops to infuse another layer of flavor.

Want to go saucy? Spoon barbecue sauce, hoisin glaze, or a warmed garlicky tomato sauce over the chops before serving!

How to tenderize pork

If you’re like I used to be and you’ve given up on pork chops, try this of cooking them.

How to prepare soil for roses

Compost is the latest buzz for growing strong, healthy, beautiful roses. According to Rose Magazine, top dressing with compost is one of the best things that you can do for your roses, and Lynn Bennett, author of “Second Hand Rose,” says, “Compost is the best soil amendment and plant food you can add to your rose garden.” In fact, compost does provide nutrient-rich soil, and some even claim that it improves resistance to many diseases that afflict roses and repels pests.

Rose Requirements

Roses need nutrient-rich, well-drained soil, and a balanced feeding regimen to thrive. According to Dennis Copson, “The soil you plant the rose bush in should be light and rich in organic material, somewhat on the sandy side, to ensure good drainage and ease of root development.”

Benefits of Compost for Roses

The addition of compost to garden soil acts as a natural soil enhancer, loosening up clay soils, retaining moisture in sandy soils, and balancing soil pH, as well as providing needed plant nutrients, warming the soil in spring and cooling it in summer. Lynn Bennett claims that, “Any plant grown with compost is much stronger and healthier and therefore can fight off attacks from bugs, diseases and harsh weather conditions.” Compost can be used as a soil amendment, being worked into the soil before roses are planted, or as a top dressing for fertilization during the growing season.

Compost Tea as Liquid Fertilizer

Compost tea is a liquid fertilizer made by steeping compost in water for several days. Compost tea can be used to water newly planted seedlings and applied as nutrient-rich fertilizer throughout the season.

  • Compost is the latest buzz for growing strong, healthy, beautiful roses.
  • The addition of compost to garden soil acts as a natural soil enhancer, loosening up clay soils, retaining moisture in sandy soils, and balancing soil pH, as well as providing needed plant nutrients, warming the soil in spring and cooling it in summer.

Benefits of Vermiculture for Roses

Vermiculture refers to worm castings or worm compost, which is much richer in nutrients than traditional compost and provides nitrogenous fertilizer. Vermiculture has been shown through extensive testing to improve plant growth, including improved bloom size, quantity, quality and color; to act as an effective fungicide; to repel aphids and white flies, which roses are susceptible to; and to be an excellent source of nitrogen. Ellen Sandbeck says, “Vermicompost is concentrated and considered by many to be nature’s most perfect fertilizer. As such, it should be used as fertilizer, not compost, and used sparingly. For example, plants that are heavy feeders such as squash, corn, tomatoes and roses will benefit from a cup or so of vermicompost mixed into the top layer of their soil.”

Worm Tea as Liquid Fertilizer

Worm tea is the liquid fertilizer derived from vermiculture that has been steeped in water, with some aeration, that is 100 percent organic and contains an abundance of the nutrients and minerals that roses need to thrive. In addition, worm tea is said to act as a natural disease and insect control. As a liquid fertilizer, worm tea can be used as a root watering application or as a foliar spray, to be absorbed directly through the leaves. While root watering is effective, worm tea is a potent fertilizer when sprayed directly onto the leaves of your plants.

How to write a two weeks notice

How to write a two weeks notice

While many states follow an employment-at-will policy — which means that either an employer or employee can terminate employment at any time for any reason –it usually isn’t a good idea to announce you’re quitting and immediately walk out the door. Write a formal resignation letter stating your last working date, keeping the tone professional and the message simple. Ending employment on a good note helps preserve connections that could be important in the future.

Company Policy

It’s important to check your company’s policies on termination of employment, usually found in the employee handbook. There are no legal penalties for leaving employment abruptly, but your company may have policies about paying out certain accrued benefits to departing employees. If you have vacation or sick time that you haven’t taken, some companies will pay you for that time when you quit, but only if you give them a certain amount of advance notice, such as two weeks.

Finishing Tasks

Even if you aren’t working on a long-term project, you likely have daily or weekly tasks that will need wrapping up. Leaving without giving at least two weeks notice puts strain on your employer and co-workers who will have to take over your duties until a replacement is hired. This will not make them think kindly of you. If you are working on a lengthy project, consider giving more than two weeks notice if that’s what it will take to finish the project and earn your employer’s respect and gratitude.


How you leave a company says a lot about your professionalism. It’s easy to say nice things if you’ve enjoyed your job, but refrain from saying negative things if you can’t wait to leave. Don’t just take it easy because you’ll be leaving soon; handle your responsibilities promptly and professionally. You often need two weeks to tie up any loose ends, and to coordinate with management and co-workers to ensure tasks and resources are all reassigned properly.


Giving two weeks notice allows your company time to find a replacement. If the hiring process is expedited, you can even help with training the new person. Offer to help with the hiring and training process when you hand in your resignation. Your employer will often be grateful that you want to help make the transition process as smooth and as easy as possible. If a replacement isn’t found before your time is up, spend the two weeks creating a short manual or task list for your job.

Future References

The most important reason to give a formal, written notice of your intention to leave a company is that you may need to use the company as a future reference for employment. Don’t burn bridges by departing on bad terms and short notice. Keep in touch with former colleagues and keep them, and your former manager, in your business network.

How to write a two weeks notice

There is some debate about the worth of an official two week notice. Some companies will automatically terminate the employee, and some employees believe it’s too much of a courtesy to the employer they are leaving. However, that’s exactly a reason to do it: it is a courtesy, and regardless of how the employer reacts, it speaks well of your professional standards. Find out the resignation policy of your company before you attempt to write any such letter. If the company does require or accept them, keep the letter short and concise.

Start with the date of the letter, followed by the name of the supervisor. In very direct terms, state the purpose of the letter in the first paragraph. For example:

Please accept this letter as my notice of resignation from (Company name), effective (insert the date two weeks from the previous date).

The rest of the letter must include information on how the company can contact you (so you can get your final check or other termination paperwork). It can include the reason you are leaving, an offer to help out with the transition, and a brief paragraph thanking the company for the opportunity. Do not make any negative comments. A potential employer could use this company as a reference.

Give the original letter or resignation to a direct supervisor and a copy to the Human Resources Department.

How to write a two weeks notice

When working at a job, it’s usually requested that notice be given when leaving the job as opposed to walking out on the same day or a few days after quitting. The practice of informing your boss that you will be leaving your place of employment in two weeks is considered giving two weeks notice. In some companies, not only is giving notice requested, but it’s required especially if you signed a contract that has a clause stating so.

Depending on what business you work for, consider writing a letter of resignation stating that you are giving your two weeks notice. This letter is usually written in a formal manner and states the reasons for leaving your current position. When writing a letter of resignation, think about incorporating positive notes such as how enjoyable it was to work with the company. It may help to make the transition of leaving a bit friendlier. In some businesses, such as those that are less formal, a letter of resignation may not be required and a verbal notice may well be acceptable.

While it is usually considered proper to give two weeks notice, some consider it completely acceptable to leave with little to no warning. For example, if you’re leaving the company on bad terms or there is an extenuating circumstance such as a medical problem, there are those that consider giving two weeks notice unnecessary. However, if you do choose to leave without notice, there may be a greater risk of not getting a good recommendation letter in the future.

Giving two weeks notice is usually regarded as the more professional and responsible way to go about leaving a job. Giving advance notice could provide the boss with more of an opportunity to find a replacement for your position. Offering to help train your replacement may also bode well for your character. In addition, there is a chance for unfinished work to be completed and for you to be able to say a proper goodbye to coworkers. Should you need a letter of recommendation in the future, there may be more of a chance of getting one if you leave on positive terms.

When making the decision to leave your job, consider the pros and cons of giving two weeks notice. Think about how leaving without warning would affect not only yourself but your coworkers and the business as well. Whichever decision is made, make sure to be positive and confident that it is the best one for you.

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Discussion Comments

Today was the last day of my two weeks notice. Everything was total smooth sailing these last two weeks. My boss understood that I was not happy with the duties of the job (it would be great for someone else) and that I could not refuse taking a 100 percent telecommuting opportunity. I wrapped up my projects, left a list of file locations, and walked out of the door to freedom on a happy note. ZsaZsa56 June 11, 2012

I have never given two weeks notice. Most bosses don’t do me any favors, why should I do them any? And I know how most jobs go. They have people beating down the doors to get hired on, especially these days. I walk out and someone else walks right in, seamless almost. Two weeks notice is just a way for them to hold you over a barrel for a little longer. gravois June 11, 2012

I am planning on leaving my job sometime within the next year and it is the kind of job where I will need to craft a resignation letter. I am really unsure of what to say.

Where can I find sample resignation letters that express my desire to leave the company in the clearest and most polite way possible? Also with a resignation letter is two weeks notice the standard amount of time to turn it in before leaving the job? tigers88 June 10, 2012

I have had jobs where I gave my two weeks notice and I have had jobs where I did not. I know that it is the standard courtesy, but I have left jobs where that courtesy is completely undeserved. I think if you are in a bad situation and treated poorly or unfairly you have every right to walk out of a job without giving any thought to what kind of inconvenience it would be on your former employers.

How to renew your wedding vows

How to renew your wedding vows

Vow renewals are a heartfelt way to celebrate your love and reaffirm the promises you made to each other on your wedding day. If you are thinking about having a vow renewal ceremony, a joyous celebration of your marriage can be planned easily and confidently with a little guidance from the experts.

What Is a Vow Renewal?

A vow renewal is a celebratory ceremony for a married couple to reaffirm their commitment to each other. They are especially popular on milestone anniversaries (10, 25, or 50 years), however, there is no rule as to when to have one.

“The most important thing to remember is not to get caught up in ‘wedding planning’ again,” says Natasha Anakotta of American Marriage Ministries. “Vow renewal ceremonies should be unique and meaningful while wholly re-committing yourselves to each other.”

Meet the Expert

Natasha Anakotta is the Outreach and Operations Manager of American Marriage Ministries, a non-profit ministry and wedding authority providing free officiant ordinations, advocacy, and support for friends and family wishing to perform legal wedding ceremonies.

Why Do Couples Renew Their Vows?

Vow renewals are held for any number of reasons. Perhaps the couple was only able to have a small wedding or elopement and now wish to have more guests present. Maybe they've overcome an illness, infidelity, or other situation in their marriage and want to re-commit to each other. Other couples may be so crazy in love after the first year of marriage that they simply want to say “I do” all over again. For romantics, planning a surprise vow renewal for your partner can be a way to re-ignite the flame of passion. It may also be a way of saying goodbye. One particularly moving vow renewal was held in hospice for a couple, complete with flowers and cake. Two days later, after promising to see her husband in heaven, the wife passed peacefully.

Does a Vow Renewal Require a License?

From the perspective of each state in the union, a vow renewal is purely ceremonial. You are not required to obtain a marriage license or use a registered church minister or officiant. There are no legal documents involved and it can be held anywhere at any time. This means:

  • You’re not limited by marriage laws, religious restrictions, or location. Why not make it a destination vow renewal and take the family? Or go to a romantic spot with just two of you and the officiant, as there is no need for official witnesses.
  • You can choose anyone to preside over the ceremony. Since it's a public speaking role with no legal obligations, your officiant can be your local pastor, a longtime friend, your original best man or maid of honor, or a hired wedding professional. Even your children can take part in performing the ceremony.

Friends or family members who perform the vow renewal often wish to present the couple with a commemorative renewal of vows certificate as a keepsake. Because it’s not a legal document, they can be creative and personalized.

How to Plan a Vow Renewal

There is no standard protocol for planning a vow renewal ceremony, so you’ll have lots of freedom to create a meaningful celebration. Here is a general planning guide:

Decide the details.

Whether at an international destination, a restaurant, or a simple gathering at home, your celebration can be as formal or informal as you’d like. While vow renewals are not a sacrament in organized religions, you may still want to hold it in a place of worship. Check with local churches or hire a non-denominational chapel.

Choose a date and send invitations.

Once you select the location and date, send an invitation reflecting the tone and formality of the event. As vow renewals can be anything you want, your invitation will tell the guests what to expect and whether you are providing a meal, cocktail hour, or a champagne toast and cake.

Pick your outfit.

You don’t need a wedding dress, veil or tux—wear what you want. That said if you'd like to get dressed up for the occasion that is perfectly fine too. Whatever you choose, your outfit should reflect the formality of the event.

Meet with your officiant.

The officiant can deliver a welcome that outlines some of your married life experiences. You may have readings and well-wishes from guests before you say your vows. Ideally, read your vows aloud to each other. Follow up with a blessing by the officiant, a big kiss and walk out to “your song” to greet each guest personally.

Vow renewal etiquette has only one cardinal rule: Gifts from your guests are not to be solicited or expected. You can, however, present each other with new or upgraded wedding rings.

Sample Renewal Vows

You've built a life together, so there are no style guides—it’s your story. Consider affirming your original promises and include experiences or lessons learned during your marriage. You might speak to the hurdles you’ve overcome together, the joys in your lives and how you’ll continue to support your beloved as you move through life side by side. To get you started, here are some examples:

“For much of my life, I dreamed about my wedding day. I thought about the person that would be standing beside me and what things would be like after that magical day had come and gone. I wondered if there was such a thing as a perfect, lasting union. Now, __ year(s) later, I know that we have a healthy and loving marriage. True love like this is rare and difficult to find, but I know that I have found it in you. In the time that we have been married, my life has changed because of you.”

“You have challenged me to do things that I didn't think possible. You have a passion for life that inspires me to be the best person I can be. Because of this, I find myself continuing to fall in love with you more deeply each day. You are my best friend, my confidant, and my one true love. Today, I want to thank you for loving me, unconditionally. I'll keep loving and supporting you and stand by your side no matter what challenges we face together. I still look forward to spending the rest of my life with you, and vow to continue loving you now, always, and forever.”

“__ year(s) ago, I took you as my husband/wife – knowing in my heart that you would be my faithful companion, my lifelong partner, and my one true love. As we stand before our loved ones [and God], I pledge to stay by your side as your wife/husband/partner, in sickness, in health, in joy and sorrow, through the good times and the bad. I vow, once more, to love you without reservation, to honor and respect you. I will continue to support you, protect you from harm and to comfort you in times of distress.”

“With my whole heart, I promise to remain devoted to you, to continue to grow with you in mind and spirit, and to practice patience, kindness, and understanding. Once more, I vow to cherish you for as long as we both shall live.”

How to renew your wedding vows

Reaffirming your wedding vows is important, but it’s not a wedding!

For a number of couples, whose marriages teetered on the brink of divorce and were salvaged by hard work and commitment, they want to celebrate their newly rekindled love with a vow renewal ceremony. But how to go about it? Good question. Here are a few pointers to consider.

First, the entire point here is to celebrate your renewed love and commitment to each other. So if you put it into perspective, any gathering or ceremony that you choose to mark the occasion is fine. However, it’s important to remember that this isn’t a wedding!

You don’t need to spend lavishly on a white dress or mounds of flowers, and you most certainly don’t need a bachelor or bachelorette party the night before. In fact, no maid of honor, bridesmaids, or ring bearer are required. And definitely no gift registry!

Some people prefer an intimate gathering with close friends and family at home. Others prefer something a little more public, like a gathering in a park and then a group dinner at a favorite restaurant. Whatever you choose is fine , just don’t lose sight of the main focus – celebrating your rekindled love.

If you and your spouse choose to make a little speech, or share some of the journey that has brought you to this place in your relationship, be very careful what you share. Obviously the two of you have put whatever it was behind you and moved forward, so keep the emphasis on that .

After all, this is about your future together , not your past. Your guests don’t need the lurid details of the affair that nearly destroyed your marriage, or the gambling addiction that almost sent you both to bankruptcy court. Simple and positive is the key.

Remember that this is about love, not appearances or opportunities to score gifts.

Because a reaffirmation of vows is not a legal ceremony, you will not need to get a license or sign any paperwork. However, you may wish to create a certificate to mark the occasion, or simply type up the new vows you exchanged and frame them somewhere in your home.

It is possible to hire a photographer for the occasion, but that can be very pricey. Professional wedding photographers in the mid-Michigan area typically charge $200 to $300 an hour. Instead, consider asking a few friends to take some pictures for posterity and save yourself the cash . With today’s digital cameras, you don’t need years of schooling to get great pictures.

And finally, if you have children , it would be a nice gesture to include them. After all, they are a vital and very important part of your family, and a product of your love. Allowing them to play a special role in the proceedings would be a way to make them feel special and included .

If however, reaffirming your wedding vows just isn’t a possibility because saving your marriage is no longer an option , we are here to help. The skilled family law attorneys at The Kronzek Firm have helped hundreds of people through their divorces over the years, and our experience is unparalleled. If you are considering ending your marriage, call 866 766 5245 today.