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5 Things You May Learn From Google+ Launch

5 Things You May Learn From Google+ Launch

It’s been less than a month since Google+, the latest and brightest social network

    was launched. It’s way too early to give any diagnostic as whether this may take off or flop. But it’s also pretty clear that this new digital service got a lot of momentum.

    As one of its earliest adopters, I must say I enjoy being there, at least for now. It may be just the novelty or the fact that it’s still comfortably not crowded. But it’s also a fact that the entire launch was pretty impressive. So impressive, that I thought it would be fun to isolate at least 5 things everyone can learn form Google+ launch.

    1. Keep Your Innovation Circles Running

    By far the most impressive and striking addition of Google+ is the “Circles” feature. Based on a real life metaphor, where you organize your life in circles of friends, this feature instantly filled a gap in social conversation that neither twitter or Facebook (despite their somehow similar “lists”) were able to cover.

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    Using circles is stupendously easy. Not only you get a visual interface where you can just drag and drop avatars of your friends into various circles (something that was never present in other mainstream social networks) but it’s also very conveniently arranged when you actually share something. Making your entire social interaction easier and comfortably granular.

    So, just because things are in a certain way it doesn’t mean you can’t bring your own touch. Challenging the status-quo may look difficult, but, as long as you keep an eye of what’s need to be done, you’ll see your spot. And it will be much easier than you think it is.

    2. Expect The Best, But Plan For The Worse

    The “invitation only” launch system, made famous a few years ago by Google’s second most popular service (Gmail, that is) worked very well this time too. So well, that at some point Google had to stop the invitations flow, in order to maintain a working infrastructure.

    During the invitation “blackout”, the public service continued to work as expected. In line with other Google services reliability, I must add. But it is very easy to see how Google+ could have become the victim of its own success. Happened before with Twitter and it’s famous “fail whale”, and we all know that.

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    So, whenever you start a new project, expect the best. But be aware of the fact that the “best” may come with many unforseen expenses. Take them into account and don’t let yourself become the victim of your own success.

    3. Underpromise And Overdeliver

    Google was quiet about this. It didn’t set up great expectations (if you don’t take into account their fantastic presence in other digital areas) so nobody would have expect something out of the ordinary. Especially since they had their blunders before with Orkut and Wave. (Yes, it’s my personal opinion that those two services where just flops).

    But what they delivered was very good stuff indeed. The contrast between the user expectations and the delivered product is always a good thing. And this time Google hit the nail in the head with this new social network. Many were already so wired up in Twitter and Facebook that they simply couldn’t believe something new may be possible.

    Whether it’s business or personal, I found that underpromising and overdelivering is incredibly fulfilling. Just don’t be so loud about your strengths, goals or ambitions, but when it comes to put them to work, just do your best. It will not only make your social interactions smoother, but it will also add a certain taste to your life. A “success” taste, that is.

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    4. Leverage Your Strengths

    Google+ uses Gmail, which, apart from being very popular, is also controlled by them. It also uses a bar in the Google search page where it displays notifications. And it integrates many of the company features at almost any thinkable level: for instance, the +1 button may have a much powerful effect on search engines than the “likes” on Facebook, or “retweets” on Twitter.

    Apart from innovation, good preparation and the element of surprise, Google also leveraged their traditional strengths in a very impressive way. The feeling of “completeness” comes exactly from this integration of all their familiar services in a simple, yet very easy to use interface.

    So, whenever you’d wanna go on fresh territories, remember that you still have a personal history. And many things from this personal history may prove extremely useful in those future journeys. Something we may tend to forget, especially when the thrill of a new venture or relationship is firing up on our adrenaline.

    5. Just Be There

    They say showing up is 80% of success and I tend to very much agree with that. If you want to do something, just do it. If you want to go somewhere, just go. If you want to play, just be in the playground and start doing your moves.

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    That’s exactly what Google did with Google+. They could have just acknowledge the failure of their previous attempts in this filed (among them Orkut or Wave) and call it a day. But instead, they continued the game. They stayed there.

    You can’t win a game if you’re not playing. As simple and as dumb as it may sound, this rule is the one that gets ignored most of the time. You can’t live an entire life on wishful thinking, it’s just  not possible. You gotta be out there and play your role.

    ***

    So, are you on Google+? How do you find it? Do you have anything to add to these 5 things? Feel free to let me know in the comments.

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    Last Updated on July 28, 2020

    14 Low GI Foods for a Healthier Diet

    14 Low GI Foods for a Healthier Diet

    Diet trends may come and go, but a low-GI diet remains one of the few that has been shown to include benefits based on science. Low GI foods provide substantial health benefits over those with a high index, and they are key to maintaining a healthy weight.

    What is GI? Glycemic index (GI) is the rate at which the carbohydrate content of a food is broken down into glucose and absorbed from the gut into the blood. When you eat foods containing carbohydrates, your body breaks them down into glucose, which is then absorbed into your bloodstream.[1]

    The higher the GI of a food, the faster it will be broken down and cause your blood glucose (sugar) to rise. Foods with a high GI rating are digested very quickly and cause your blood sugar to spike. This is why it’s advisable to stick to low GI foods as much as possible, as the carbohydrate content of low GI foods will be digested slowly, allowing a more gradual rise in blood glucose levels.

    Foods with a GI scale rating of 70 or more are considered to be high GI. Foods with a rating of 55 or below are considered low GI foods.

    It’s important to note that the glycemic index of a food doesn’t factor in the quantity that you eat. For example, although watermelon has a high glycemic index, the water and fiber content of a standard serving of water means it won’t have a significant impact on your blood sugar.

    Like watermelon, some high GI foods (such as baked potatoes) are high in nutrients. And some low GI foods (such as corn chips) contain high amounts of trans fats.

    In most cases, however, the GI is an important means of gauging the right foods for a healthy diet.

    Eating mainly low GI foods every day helps to provide your body with a slow, continuous supply of energy. The carbohydrates in low GI foods is digested slowly, so you feel satisfied for longer. This means you’ll be less likely to suffer from fluctuating sugar levels that can lead to cravings and snacking.

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    Let’s continue with some of the best examples of low GI foods.

    1. Quinoa

    GI: 53

    Quinoa has a slightly higher GI than rice or barley, but it contains a much higher proportion of protein. If you don’t get enough protein from the rest of your diet, quinoa could help. It’s technically a seed, so it’s also high in fiber–again, more than most grains. It’s also gluten-free, which makes it excellent for those with Celiac disease or gluten intolerance.

    2. Brown Rice (Steamed)

    GI: 50

    Versatile and satisfying, brown rice is one of the best low GI foods and is a staple for many dishes around the world. It’s whole rice from which only the husk (the outermost layer) is removed, so it’s a great source of fiber. In fact, brown rice has been shown to help lower cholesterol, improve digestive function, promote fullness, and may even help prevent the formation of blood clots. Just remember to always choose brown over white!

    3. Corn on the Cob

    GI: 48

    Although it tastes sweet, corn on the cob is a good source of slow-burning energy (and one of the tastiest low GI foods). It’s also a good plant source of Vitamin B12, folic acid, and iron, all of which are required for the healthy production of red blood cells in the body. It’s healthiest when eaten without butter and salt!

    4. Bananas

    GI: 47

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    Bananas are a superfood in many ways. They’re rich in potassium and manganese and contain a good amount of vitamin C. Their low GI rating means they’re great for replenishing your fuel stores after a workout.

    They are easy to add to smoothies, cereal, or kept on your desk for a quick snack. The less ripe they are, the lower the sugar content is! As one of the best low GI foods, it’s a great addition to any daily diet.

    5. Bran Cereal

    GI: 43

    Bran is famous for being one of the highest cereal sources of fiber. It’s also rich in a huge range of nutrients: calcium, folic acid, iron, magnesium, and a host of B vitamins. Although bran may not be to everyone’s tastes, it can easily be added to other cereals to boost the fiber content and lower the overall GI rating.

    6. Natural Muesli

    GI: 40

    Muesli–when made with unsweetened rolled oats, nuts, dried fruit, and other sugar-free ingredients–is one of the healthiest ways to start the day. It’s also very easy to make at home with a variety of other low GI foods. Add yogurt and fresh fruit for a nourishing, energy-packed breakfast.

    7. Apples

    GI: 40

    Apple skin is a great source of pectin, an important prebiotic that helps to feed the good bacteria in your gut. Apples are also high in polyphenols, which function as antioxidants, and contain a good amount of vitamin C. They are best eaten raw with the skin on! Apples are one of a number of fruits[2] that have a low glycemic index. Be careful which fruits you choose, as many have a large amount of natural sugars[3].

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    8. Apricots

    GI: 30

    Apricots provide both fiber and potassium, which make them an ideal snack for both athletes and anyone trying to keep sugar cravings at bay. They’re also a source of antioxidants and a range of minerals.

    Apricots can be added to salads, cereals, or eaten as part of a healthy mix with nuts at any time of the day.

    9. Kidney Beans

    GI: 29

    Kidney beans and other legumes provide a substantial serving of plant-based protein, so they can be used in lots of vegetarian dishes if you’re looking to adopt a plant-based diet[4]. They’re also packed with fiber and a variety of minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, and other beneficial plant compounds. They are great in soups, stews, or with (whole grain) tacos.

    10. Barley

    GI: 22

    Barley is a cereal grain that can be eaten in lots of ways. It’s an excellent source of B vitamins, including niacin, thiamin, and pyridoxine (vitamin B-6), fiber, molybdenum, manganese, and selenium. It also contains beta-glucans, a type of fiber that can support gut health and has been shown to reduce appetite and food intake.

    Please note that barley does contain gluten, which makes it unsuitable for anyone who is Celiac[5] or who follows a gluten-free diet. In this case, gluten-free alternatives might include quinoa, buckwheat, or millet.

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    11. Raw Nuts

    GI: 20

    Most nuts have a low GI of between 0 and 20, with cashews slightly higher at around 22. Nuts, as one of the best low GI foods, are a crucial part of the Mediterranean diet[6] and are really the perfect snack: they’re a source of plant-based protein, high in fiber, and contain healthy fats. Add them to smoothies and salads to boost the nutritional content. Try to avoid roasted and salted nuts, as these are made with large amounts of added salt and (usually) trans fats.

    12. Carrots

    GI: 16

    Raw carrots are not only a delicious low GI vegetable, but they really do help your vision! They contain vitamin A (beta carotene) and a host of antioxidants. They’re also low-calorie and high in fiber, and they contain good amounts of vitamin K1, potassium, and antioxidants. Carrots are great for those monitoring their weight as they’ve been linked to lower cholesterol levels.

    13. Greek Yogurt

    GI: 12

    Unsweetened Greek yogurt is not only low GI, but it’s an excellent source of calcium and probiotics, as well. Probiotics help to keep your gut microbiome in balance and support your overall digestive health and immune function. Greek yogurt makes a healthy breakfast, snack, dessert, or a replacement for dip. The most common probiotic strains found in yogurt are Streptococcus thermophilus[7] (found naturally in yogurt) and Lactobacillus acidophilus[8] (which is often added by the manufacturer). You can also look into probiotic supplements for improving your gut health.

    14. Hummus

    GI: 6

    When made the traditional way from chickpeas and tahini, hummus is a fantastic, low-GI dish. It’s a staple in many Middle Eastern countries and can be eaten with almost any savory meal. Full of fiber to maintain satiety and feed your good gut bacteria, hummus is great paired with freshly-chopped vegetables, such as carrots and celery.

    Bottom Line

    If you’re looking to eat healthier or simply cut down on snacking throughout the day, eating low GI foods is a great way to get started. Choose any of the above foods for a healthy addition to your daily diet and start feeling better for longer.

    More Tips on Eating Healthy

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Mils via unsplash.com

    Reference

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