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6 Signs that Your Family is Ready for a Pet

6 Signs that Your Family is Ready for a Pet

You’re having a day out at the local park with your family when a cute poodle and her owner walk by. Suddenly, your daughter ignites the “can we get a dog?” conversion, making sure she throws in just the right amount of sadness and despair in her voice. This time, instead of throwing the standard “No, you are not ready for a pet yet” response, you actually consider introducing a new member to the family but are worried about the challenges.

You’re not alone. Many families often have a difficult time deciding when to introduce a new furry member to the family, especially when there are kids involved. Living with a pet is a huge responsibility that requires a lot of patience and support from each family member.

Before you introduce that fluffy friend into the family, check to see if your family meets these requirements.

1. You are allowed to keep pets in your area

One of the many perks of owning a standalone home is the freedom to set your own rules, including whether or not to adopt a pet. Plus, if your home comes with a large enough yard, your pet dog can run around freely.

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Apartments don’t usually come with the same level of freedom. Many apartment buildings often have restrictions on the type and size of the pets allowed within the building.

You should also check with the authorities in the area you live for breeds that aren’t allowed. For instance, Staffordshire bull terriers, American pit bull terriers, and related dog breeds are illegal in the county of Miami-Dade, Florida.

2. No one in the family has pet allergies

In the US, over 15% of the entire population is allergic to cats and dogs.[1] Acute allergic reactions have been known to cause death and numerous visits to emergency rooms across the country.

Before getting a dog, a cat, or any other pet, ensure everyone at home has been tested for allergies, especially the older members of the family. Kids usually outgrow allergies and most often develop immunity against allergens.

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3. Free Time

Dogs and many other pets often require owners to commit a significant amount of time to care for them. They have to be trained on etiquette around the house, walked regularly, fed, washed, and socialized with other family members. You should identify at least one or two members of your family who have enough time each day to hang out with the pet, especially if it’s a dog.

Spending time with your pet will enable you to become a good animal whisperer, which will help you become a better pet owner.

Once you have the time aspect covered, you’ll be at least halfway on the journey to adopting your next pooch or cat.

4. Financial Capability

Apart from the money you spend when adopting your pet, you should also be prepared to spend extra cash on a daily or weekly basis on things like food and preventative care. Pets like dogs and cats will usually need to be neutered or sprayed before being adopted. Recurrent expenses on food, toys, cleaning supplies, and routine or emergency visits to the vet should also be factored in when adopting a pet.

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Therefore, always factor in the amount of disposal income(s) in the family when bringing in a pet into your lives.

5. Everyone in the family is on board

Imagine bringing a labrador home and then realizing your teenage kid is terrified of dogs. Many pet owners often make the mistake of assuming everyone else loves dogs, cats, or other pets. Adding a new member to the family should be a joint decision, with each member of the family involved in the decision-making process.

Duties and responsibilities should be shared out among family members, including the kids.

6. You’re ready to learn

New pets always come with a steep learning curve. Owners must learn about how to keep their pets safe and healthy, including proper nutrition and knowing when to take the pet to a vet. Invest in training for members of your family who are willing to learn, including the kids.

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Educated pet owners in the family are more likely to raise happy and healthy pets compared to those who leave everything to chance.

Bottom Line

Being a pet owner is a fulfilling achievement, especially when the whole family is on board. It also comes with its own set of challenges, so make sure you and your family are prepared before taking that step.

Featured photo credit: Pixabay.com via pixabay.com

Reference

[1] Pet Education: Human Allergies to Dogs

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Vikas Agrawal

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Last Updated on August 12, 2019

12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

12 Best Foods That Improve Memory and Brain Health

Nutrition plays a vital role in brain function and staying sharp into the golden years. Personally, my husband is going through medical school, which is like a daily mental marathon. Like any good wife, I am always looking for things that will boost his memory fortitude so he does his best in school.

But you don’t have to be a med student to appreciate better brainiac brilliance. If you combine certain foods with good hydration, proper sleep and exercise, you may just rival Einstein and have a great memory in no time.

I’m going to reveal the list of foods coming out of the kitchen that can improve your memory and make you smarter.

Here are 12 best brain foods that improve memory and brain power:

1. Nuts

The American Journal of Epidemiology published a study linking higher intakes of vitamin E with the prevention on cognitive decline.[1]

Nuts like walnuts and almonds (along with other great foods like avocados) are a great source of vitamin E.

Cashews and sunflower seeds also contain an amino acid that reduces stress by boosting serotonin levels.

Walnuts even resemble the brain, just in case you forget the correlation, and are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which also improve your mental magnitude.

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2. Blueberries

Shown in studies at Tuffs University to benefit both short-term memory and coordination, blueberries pack quite a punch in a tiny blue package.[2]

When compared to other fruits and veggies, blueberries were found to have the highest amount of antioxidants (especially flavonoids), but strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are also full of brain benefits.

3. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are packed full of the antioxidant lycopene, which has shown to help protect against free-radical damage most notably seen in dementia patients.

4. Broccoli

While all green veggies are important and rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, broccoli is a superfood even among these healthy choices.

Since your brain uses so much fuel (it’s only 3% of your body weight but uses up to 17% of your energy), it is more vulnerable to free-radical damage and antioxidants help eliminate this threat.

Broccoli is packed full of antioxidants, is well-known as a powerful cancer fighter and is also full of vitamin K, which is known to enhance cognitive function.

5. Foods Rich in Essential Fatty Acids

Your brain is the fattest organ (not counting the skin) in the human body, and is composed of 60% fat. That means that your brain needs essential fatty acids like DHA and EPA to repair and build up synapses associated with memory.

The body does not naturally produce essential fatty acids so we must get them in our diet.

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Eggs, flax, and oily fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and herring are great natural sources of these powerful fatty acids. Eggs also contain choline, which is a necessary building block for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, to help you recall information and concentrate.

6. Soy

Soy, along with many other whole foods mentioned here, are full of proteins that trigger neurotransmitters associated with memory.

Soy protein isolate is a concentrated form of the protein that can be found in powder, liquid, or supplement form.

Soy is valuable for improving memory and mental flexibility, so pour soy milk over your cereal and enjoy the benefits.

7. Dark Chocolate

When it comes to chocolate, the darker the better. Try to aim for at least 70% cocoa. This yummy desert is rich in flavanol antioxidants which increase blood flow to the brain and shield brain cells from aging.

Take a look at this article if you want to know more benefits of dark chocolate: 15 Surprising and Science-Backed Health Effects of Dark Chocolate

8. Foods Rich in Vitamins: B vitamins, Folic Acid, Iron

Some great foods to obtain brain-boosting B vitamins, folic acid and iron are kale, chard, spinach and other dark leafy greens.

B6, B12 and folic acid can reduce levels of homocysteine in the blood. Homocysteine increases are found in patients with cognitive impairment like Alzheimer’s, and high risk of stroke.

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Studies showed when a group of elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment were given high doses of B6, B12, and folic acid, there was significant reduction in brain shrinkage compared to a similar placebo group.[3]

Other sources of B vitamins are liver, eggs, soybeans, lentils and green beans. Iron also helps accelerate brain function by carrying oxygen. If your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, it can slow down and people can experience difficulty concentrating, diminished intellect, and a shorter attention span.

To get more iron in your diet, eat lean meats, beans, and iron-fortified cereals. Vitamin C helps in iron absorption, so don’t forget the fruits!

9. Foods Rich in Zinc

Zinc has constantly demonstrated its importance as a powerful nutrient in memory building and thinking. This mineral regulates communications between neurons and the hippocampus.

Zinc is deposited within nerve cells, with the highest concentrations found in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for higher learning function and memory.

Some great sources of zinc are pumpkin seeds, liver, nuts, and peas.

10. Gingko Biloba

This herb has been utilized for centuries in eastern culture and is best known for its memory boosting brawn.

It can increase blood flow in the brain by dilating vessels, increasing oxygen supply and removing free radicals.

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However, don’t expect results overnight: this may take a few weeks to build up in your system before you see improvements.

11. Green and Black Tea

Studies have shown that both green and black tea prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine—a key chemical involved in memory and lacking in Alzheimer’s patients.

Both teas appear to have the same affect on Alzheimer’s disease as many drugs utilized to combat the illness, but green tea wins out as its affects last a full week versus black tea which only lasts the day.

Find out more about green tea here: 11 Health Benefits of Green Tea (+ How to Drink It for Maximum Benefits)

12. Sage and Rosemary

Both of these powerful herbs have been shown to increase memory and mental clarity, and alleviate mental fatigue in studies.

Try to enjoy these savory herbs in your favorite dishes.

When it comes to mental magnitude, eating smart can really make you smarter. Try to implement more of these readily available nutrients and see just how brainy you can be!

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Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

Reference

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