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4 Tips on How to Give Your Home an Easy Extreme Makeover

4 Tips on How to Give Your Home an Easy Extreme Makeover

Summer is near, and this year, it will start on June 20 exactly at 6:34 p.m. EDT. At that time, the Sun will officially reach its northernmost point of the equator. Now that you have learned something fun, we need to start talking about what summer actually means.

It means hot weather, the longest vacation, and probably a nice, relaxing trip for the most of you. For some of us, who do not plan on visiting anything exotic, our home will be our sanctuary, which makes this the perfect time of giving your home an easy (and affordable) makeover.

Why should you care about this, you might ask? Well, your home represents you, it is your calling card, and not to mention that it can greatly influence how relaxed you feel, how well you can rest and how much fun you can have.

The matter of colors is always brought up and, as you probably know, certain colors are much more suited for particular rooms, while some colors and types of lighting should be strictly avoided. Clearing up all the necessary stuff should also be on the top of your list, as a clean home will also clear you mind, you will find important stuff more easily, and you will always be ready for an unexpected visit.

So, how can you give your home a much-needed makeover? We’ll start with some basics, room by room, and you can decide what suits your needs and desires. We’ll also give you some ideas that can greatly improve your life.

Bedroom: The Palace of Peace

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    Hey, bedrooms are not important, right? Well, how important is the room we spend one third of our lives in? We only sleep there, and most people neglect their bedrooms when thinking about home makeovers. This can be extremely fun, as you can start with something simple – you might need a new set of comforter covers that can accentuate your personality.

    Maybe you want to go for a gentle, universal blue. Or you might want something red that goes with your walls? In any case, when selecting a palette for this most personal space in your home, select something with soothing colors. Neutral colors are good and suit most people, so beige is always good.

    Being a little more adventurous, green is also nice – it can be both warm and cold at the same time and, with some warm lighting, it can create a perfect space for you to rest. If you don’t have a headboard, make sure to get one – it is a simple piece of decorated wood you can use to lean your pillow against, and it can look any way you want.

    Don’t forget to remove all the excess stuff you have laying around. Place a few mounted shelves to place all the books and mementoes you have (you can find them in almost any store such as Ikea). Make sure to have at least two lamps inside your room – do not go for something too bright; it should create an atmosphere of peace and give enough light for you to be able to read.

    Give away your unused clothes to a Red Cross organization, and free up some storage space – you will be doing a good deed and your home a favor. Install some matching window blinds; those plastic ones are extremely cheap and come in many colors. Make a picture of before and after, and you’ll see how much you really like all the changes you’ve made.

    Living Room: Active and Elegant

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      Your living room can probably be one of the most diverse rooms inside your house. You can mix and match patterns and colors of all kinds whatever you want. Living rooms are usually the go to place when you have visitors, when you are spending time with your family – and it implies a certain activity. That is why its colors can also be active, and make you awake and alert.

      Going with bold and bright colors is always a good choice. Soft pink can be an excellent choice, but make sure to add a few pillows that will give you some contrast. If you are looking for something more sophisticated and elegant, you can go for white – you can never miss with this color, but it can be extremely pet and child unfriendly, so watch out. Even taupe colors can give you a lot of ideas of how to decorate your living room.

      Wooden elements are always welcome in any living room, and a wooden coffee table can be an excellent solution that will go with any color. You can even have wooden beams installed that are purely decorative, and it will give you a rustic feel. Once again, you need to declutter your space, and remove anything you do not actively use.

      Hide away all the extension cords and cables, gather them together with cable ties, or lock them together with cable clips. Make sure to make straight lines when placing cables, since it will make a natural flow that looks much better. Add a few floor lamps that can be turned on to create a softer atmosphere, especially at night when you’re watching movies.

      A few well-positioned bowls can gather all the small trinkets like keys and stray batteries in one place. This will clean up most of your shelves where you can place a few framed pictures and books.

      Kitchen and Dining Room: Stimulating and Sophisticated

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        Most kitchens are combined with dining spaces, and it creates a modern kitchen that anyone can recognize. Kitchen makeovers can be extremely expensive, so you will first need to determine what it is that you want, how much you want to pay for it, and what can be achieved with the space you have at your disposal. A much cheaper solution is to add a few nice light fixtures that will add light and look nice.

        In most kitchens, it is best to have natural white light – it will allow you to see the real color of all ingredients – warmer lighting may mask some unwanted colors, especially in meat. Even adding a nice and practical spice racks can be a good idea, if you want you can make one yourself. It doesn’t have to be breathtaking, it just needs to add your own touch here.

        Add a few pots of flowers, or some spice herbs such as parsley, basil, or even mint. They are extremely easy to grow, they can add a fresh flavor whenever you need it, and it can immensely improve how your kitchen looks. Adding smart details like well-placed hooks can make your life easier, so you can hang your pans on the wall. Once again, this will be extremely practical and it will look perfectly rustic.

        Kitchen and dining spaces require warm colors, such as reds and yellows – they are believed to stimulate the appetite, not to mention that these are colors that can make kitchen elements pop. Even a simple white can energize a room, but it will require, as always, much more maintenance. Even though green is not the warmest color, if you choose shades such as mint or apple green, you can pair it well with some wooden elements in your kitchen.

        Bathrooms: Private but Inviting

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          The bathroom is another place where we spend an astounding amount of time. We do not go to our bathroom only to do our “business”, but also to take a relaxing shower, have some us time, and in general, take our mind off of all the problems. The first, and most important thing is to replace your faucets if you have a leaky one. This will not only save you a lot of money, but it will give you a new, more modern look.

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          Low-flow shower heads create a spread out water spray, which uses smaller amounts of water, but looks way cooler. Giving your bathroom a repaint with a glossy finish that will not only prevent mildew from developing, but it can give your old bathroom a new look. You can do that yourself, without having to pay for a pro painter; you can buy a starters kit at any DIY shop.

          If you have a small bathroom, mirrors can help give it a more spacious look, white lights can help accentuate colder colors, and it will help you when cleaning up, or putting on some makeup, if you’re a girl, or a shaving kit, if you’re a boy. It is always a good suggestion to go for white – while other colors will make your bathroom pop more, white is easy to clean up, and it gives the impression of a bigger space.

          Once you’re at it, make sure to replace floor mats, buy new soap holders and think about buying waterproof speakers. Why shouldn’t you listen to some music when you’re taking a bath?

          Whatever you decide, your home makeover is about how you feel and what you want your home to look like. If you want something modern, and ultra-elegant – go for it! Some designs are a bit more expensive, but you can surely find some cool solutions on Pinterest. Rustic and calming look is also back, and it is hotter than ever – it will give you a warm, family look. Just make sure to do some proper research before you decide on anything, but remember – your creativity is the only limit. Good luck!

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          Vladimir Zivanovic

          CMO at MyCity-Web

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          8 Things to Watch for If You’re Considering Being Vegetarian

          8 Things to Watch for If You’re Considering Being Vegetarian

          Vegetarianism has been around for a long time, finding favor with many people, including Pythagoras clear back around 580 B.C. It’s been presented as one of the most healthy diets around, including being touted by the Egyptians to the point of abstaining from meat and animal clothing due to karmic beliefs. The vegetarian society (vegsoc.org) defines vegetarianism as:

          “Someone who lives on a diet of grains, pulses, nuts, seeds, vegetables and fruits with, or without, the use of dairy products and eggs. A vegetarian does not eat any meat, poultry, game, fish, shellfish* or by-products of slaughter.”

          While it’s pretty obvious that there are multiple benefits to following a vegetarian diet, it’s always good to be informed about the cons of this dietary choice as well.

          Outlined below are several things you might want to be aware of before you say good-bye to meat forever. Whether you are a current vegetarian, or contemplating making a shift, keep in mind these 8 things to keep yourself healthy.

          1. You could suffer from B12 vitamin deficiency

          The B vitamins are especially important for stress management, adrenal health, and brain function. Vegetarians in particularly are at risk for B12 deficiency. Vitamin B12 is attached to the protein in animal products and without enough B12 you can suffer from depression, fatigue, and an inability to concentrate.

          Due to its attachment to animal proteins, B12 is the hardest for vegetarians to obtain when they don’t eat dairy or eggs in their diet. This essential little vitamin can be found in some algae and has been added to some yeast, but research doesn’t currently provide enough information to say whether or not these forms of B12 are of good quality and can provide adequate supplementation.

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          The body is unable to make this vitamin, meaning it has to be taken in through food or supplementation. Essential for making red blood cells, DNA, nerves and various other function in the body, a Harvard Health Medical report in January of 2013 found symptoms of a B12 deficiency can present in sneaky ways including depression, paranoia, delusion, and loss of taste and smell.

          2.  You could suffer from higher states of anxiety/depression, lower sense of well-being

          According to a CBS Atlanta report, vegetarians suffered from a higher rate of anxiety and depression than their counterparts. Read the full report here. Depression and/or anxiety can be a result of many possible deficiencies including essential vitamins and amino acids you can find only in meat products, including Omega-3s from wild caught salmon.

          Without the correct supplementation and proper understanding of diet, including the importance of micro and macro nutrients, depression and anxiety can become a serious problem, bringing down the overall health and well-being of vegetarians.

          Even though reports on health and lifestyle show vegetarians have a lower BMI and lower consumption of alcohol and drugs, it also shows they suffer from more chronic illnesses and more visits to the doctor than their meat eating counterparts.

          3. You could suffer from excess weight

          When you go vegetarian it opens up a lot of food, but just because there isn’t any meat in front of you, it doesn’t mean it’s necessary healthy. Though pizza and beer technically fall under the vegetarian diet, it’s not a healthy choice for your waist line.

          Just because being a vegetarian is associated with a healthier lifestyle in many cases, doesn’t mean it’s always true. Making bread and pasta your staples and not understanding where your protein sources should be coming from, can pack on body fat, which increases your chances of health issues such as diabetes and chronic inflammation.

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          If the choice to go vegetarian happens on a whim without the proper understanding of food control, portion, and nutritionally dense alternatives you can find yourself reaching for vegetarian foods, which could cause serious problems down the road. Nuts are a good example, but just because something is touted as healthy, it doesn’t mean, your should eat it in excess.

          Eating too many calories in fat will still cause you to gain weight. Eating too many calories in carbs will cause you to gain weight. Eating too many calories in protein will cause you to gain weight. See a pattern here? Not to mention you’ll miss out on important nutrients the body needs by over-eating in one area and under-eating in another. Re-read number 2.

          4. You could have a higher risk of heart disease

          Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables should be a goal we all strive for, but when you cut out meat, you also cut out what is known as complete protein, which you find in animal by-products. Complete means more than just the essential amino acids, it means those amino acids contain dietary sulfur. Without enough dietary sulfur, which is found almost exclusively in fish and pasture feed grass beef, the body will struggle with the biological activities of both protein and enzymes.

          The effects cascade downward, effecting bones, joints, tissues, and even metabolic issues. In short, a low intake of sulfur associated with a vegetarian diet can result in high blood levels of homocysteine, which may lead to blood clots in your arteries, blood clots raise your risk of stroke and heart attack. To read the full report click here.

          5. You could suffer from low cholesterol

          I know, at first you’re thinking, wait, low cholesterol is a good thing. Yes, it is, when it’s LDL cholesterol, which you get from eating an unhealthy diet, but low HDL (good cholesterol) can cause serious health issues. HDL, according to the mayo clinic, is in every cell in our body and can help fend off heart disease, not enough of it though, and too much LDL can go the other way, will be building up plaque in the arteries and leading to heart disease.

          Cholesterol, the good kind, is actually vitally important to the making of every steroid hormone in the body! There are six, and without cholesterol the body is unable to convert hormones, and it can cause damage in the endocrine system.

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          A vegetarian without a balanced diet, meaning enough protein, enough veggies, and enough good fats, could disrupt his or her adrenals, which are directly connected to the endocrine system and the body’s ability to make and synthesize the hormones your body needs. The six major hormones in the body help do everything from metabolizing carbohydrates, to the electrolyte balance, to making sure if you’re a woman you can carry a healthy baby through pregnancy.

          6. You could suffer from lower bone density and osteoporosis.

          Osteoporosis, the disease where the bones get thinner, weaker, and fractures become a high risk with day to day movements. It’s often associated with the older generation, but your risk for osteoporosis increases with a lower bone density. Bone density can be directly related to diet and lifestyle, along with many other factors.

          When it comes to eating a vegetarian diet it’s possible to miss getting enough of the right nutrients, causing the bones to begin to break down. If your vegetarian diet isn’t balanced and providing you with the correct nutrients and the means to absorb the correct nutrients, your body could begin to break down.

          Recently, Professor Tuan Nguyen of Sydney’s Garvan Institute of Medical Research led a review of both Australian and Vietnamese research around the bone density of vegetarian versus their meat eating counterparts. Helping Professor Nguyen was Dr. Ho-Pham Thuc Lan from Pham Ngoc Thac University of Medicine in Vietnam. The review was designed to sort though years of research surrounded by discrepancies and inadequate clinical data.

          At the end of the review, with vegetarianism rising to around 5% of the populace in the western continents, and with wide spread osteoporosis reports – 2 million in Australia and closer to 54 million in America – the decrease in bone density of vegetarians is a serious issue which needs to be addressed, if you’ve cut meat and animal by-products out of your life.

          7. You could be at a higher risk for colorectal cancer

          Cancer seems to be running rampant through America, and it’s within everyone’s best interest to do all they can to keep their body healthy and happy to prevent cancer from finding a place to grow. In most studies it’s been found vegetarians are at lower risk for cancer, but a European Oxford study with over 63 thousand men and women in the United Kingdom found the risk for colorectal cancer higher in vegetarians than in meat-eaters.

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          Extra care needs to be taken when establishing a diet to ensure the body is receiving and able to up take all the important nutritional benefits and requirements from food.

          8. You could end up eating more processed food

          Depending on how deep you choose to go as a vegetarian, it could create the need to substitute a lot of food and recipe ingredients in your diet, but what happens when you cut out meat, eggs, and dairy and your recipe calls for meat, eggs, and/or dairy? You have to end up using a “healthy” vegetarian alternative which include stabilizers, thickeners, and various other ingredients you can’t pronounce.

          Lauren from Empowered Substance puts it into a great perspective with her comparison of Earth Balance, a vegetarian approved butter replacement compared to butter. She points out the ingredients in Earth Balance consist of: Palm fruit oil, canola oil, safflower oil, flax oil, olive oil, salt, natural flavor, pea protein, sunflower lecithin, lactic acid, annatto color. Meanwhile, the ingredient list in butter, is much shorter. It’s butter.

          That’s only one example. To appeal to the vegetarian lifestyle food manufacturers have found alternatives which fall under vegetarian, but aren’t necessarily healthy for you. Consider baked goods, which though vegetarian can be filled with more sugars and binders than regular baked goods with diary products. It’s the same with vegetarian items like mac and cheese, without using real cheese you may just be getting oil and thickeners, without even the smallest amount of nutritional value.

          The reality is, most vegetarian substitutes contain the same junky alternatives which even meat eaters should be avoiding to remain happy and healthy.

          On one final note, whichever lifestyle you choose to work with, remember anything in excess – including protein and animal by products – isn’t healthy for the body. It takes a wide spectrum of food and nutrients to keep the beautiful body you travel around in all day running in prime condition.

           

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