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  1. Adding More Veggies to Your Diet

    June 30, 2015 by Kara Perez

    veggiesIt’s a common refrain for everyone: “I need to eat better!” Americans are notorious for having horrible diets, mostly made up of high fat, high sugar, and highly processed foods. We’re a culture of fast food, and I don’t just mean McDonald’s. We eat out a lot and generally speaking, the carb and dairy heavy pasta dish is actually cheaper than the veggie laden salad dish.

    There are a few handy-dandy ways to get more veggies into every meal of the day though. Whether eating in or out, you can definitely make more vegetable centered meals a staple in your diet. Using vegetables that are usually for dinner, like broccoli or cauliflower, in your breakfast is a great way to ensure you’ll use all the produce without it going bad too. Totally a frugal score! Here are some ideas to help you get started.

    Breakfast

    Eggs and veggies- Eggs are an incredibly diverse food and a breakfast staple. All sorts of veggies can go in your scrambled eggs or your omelette. Spinach, tomatoes, onions, broccoli, avocado…basically, any vegetable you like can be tossed in your eggs. Try something like this: eggs scrambled with spinach and red peppers with a side of whole wheat toast covered with peanut butter. It’s delicious and packed with nutrients! A breakfast like that will keep you full until midday as well.

    Veggie Breakfast Sandwich- Toss out that old bacon, egg and cheese and upgrade your morning sandwich. Try this instead: on a whole wheat bagel or toast, layer a tomato slice, spinach leaves, avocado and an egg. Bam! You’ve lowered your cholesterol intake and upped your veggies.

    Lunch

    A salad is a great way to jam pack your lunch with veggies. Just make sure it’s the right kind of salad. Pass on iceberg or romaine lettuce and opt instead for nutrient dense greens like kale, collard greens, spinach or mixed greens. (That alone will totally up your vitamin intake!) Skip the croutons and cheese crumbles too. Instead add nuts like almonds or walnuts for a delicious crunch and protein boost, or raisins for a touch of sweet.

    It’s summer, so grilled veggies are a great salad addition. Same goes for things like berries. How does this salad sound: carrots, almonds, strawberries, yellow peppers and cucumbers. Light, refreshing and healthy! Perfect for a hot summer afternoon. For a more substantial lunch, try grilled chicken, tomatoes, corn and black beans on a bed of spinach. It’s got protein out the wazoo and a nice dose of iron!

    Dinner

    A favorite meal for most people is the traditional Italian one- pasta, garlic bread, meatballs. You can actually make an all vegetable version of that! Using veggies like zucchini or spaghetti squash you can make veggie noodles. A tomato sauce rich with garlic and onions has added veggies to it. Skip the meatballs or try making them with tofu or tempeh.

    Another easy and veggie heavy is a stir-fry. You can put literally anything in there too. Whatever veggies you have, throw them into a skillet with some oil and watch a meal appear! I like to do mushrooms, carrots, snow peas, broccoli and chick peas. Sometimes I put the medley over brown rice or add a protein like chicken or tofu. Sometimes I just eat the veggies! You can add whatever sauce you like to your stir fry for a punch of flavor.

    One meal I love to make for date night at home is roasted vegetables with fish. (Roasting things makes me feel like more of a cook than just sauteeing things does.) I like to do a sweet potato, broccoli and cauliflower medley. The potatoes go in first, with some salt and pepper and I add the greens a little later. I blacken some tilapia with a pre-made cajun spice mix (straight from the grocery store!) and bake the fish in the oven too. At the end, I have a hearty and healthy meal that all came out of the oven. Roasted asparagus is also good with fish!

    Next time you’re in the kitchen and reaching for a meal that is veggie-less, ask yourself how you can add something colorful in there. Layer eggplant into your lasagna! Add a side salad to meat and potatoes! Have carrots instead of goldfish for a snack! Vegetables are also cheaper than prepared foods or meats. There are a million ways to get those veggies into your diet and you’ll be surprised at how easy it really is.

    Do you get enough veggies in your diet? What are some other ways you sneak them in?


  2. 4 Ways to Save Money and Improve Your Health

    June 23, 2015 by Kayla

    540184443_383e3683e0_oHave you ever really looked at what most people’s goals are? What about their New Year’s Resolutions? Most people’s goals tend to be focused around one of two things: health or wealth.

    Every year people set goals to become healthier, lose weight, or save money. But what if you could save money and improve your health? Does that sound too good to be true to you? Well read on for 4 ways you can start to save money and improve your health today.

    Quit Smoking

    The first and easiest way you can save money and be healthier is to quit smoking or using tobacco of any kind. If you are going to keep smoking and wasting $5-10 week (or more) on cigarettes, then the rest of this post can’t help you. But if you really want to save money and get healthier, the first step is to cut out tobacco.

    Eat at Home

    If you aren’t a tobacco user, great! You are already one step ahead on the last tip. :)

    The next way you can save money and be healthier is to quit eating out. Admittedly, this is one thing that I struggle with the most. I like to eat out. But I am trying to be better about eating my meals at home because I know they are healthier and cheaper than going out to eat. Even if you prepared mostly boxed and processed foods when you “cook” at home, you are at least saving money over eating out and that’s progress.

    Cut Out the Crap

    As I said in the last section, if you are eating at home you are saving money automatically over going out to eat. But what if those health and wealth savings aren’t enough? The next step is to cut out the crap from your grocery shopping trips.

    To do this you should avoid going to the store when you are hungry or overly emotional. This is always when the ice cream, cookies, and Doritos end up in my shopping cart. Now that I know what my triggers are, mostly my emotions, I try to avoid shopping when they are high so I don’t load up my cart with crappy food.

    Crappy food is a waste of your grocery money and it won’t improve your health. Sure getting a small carton of ice cream now and then is ok for a treat, but it really does need  to be the rarity rather than the norm.

    Workout for Free

    I used to be a big fan of the gym I went to, but now that I quit going earlier this year I’m starting to see the benefits of working out on my own.

    • It’s free
    • I don’t have to go at a scheduled class time
    • No one gets on my butt if I miss a day

    Ok, that last one may or may not be your friend. :)

    But there truly are tons of ways you can workout with paying for a gym membership. Taking your dogs for a walk, mowing your yard, working in your garden, or following along with an exercise video from YouTube are all great ways to workout for free.

    Sometimes people think that to be healthier you have to spend more money, but that’s not always the case. There are some things you can do to save money and improve your health at the same time.

    What other ways can you think of to save money and improve your health?


  3. 4 Tips for Living a Healthy Lifestyle

    June 20, 2015 by Kayla

    Crossfit to FightMany of us know that we should be living a healthy lifestyle, but we know less about how this can be achieved. This kind of lifestyle doesn’t have to be determined by your age: there are many things that everyone can do to improve their health and well-being and feel great in the process.

    Tip #1: Healthy eating

    The truth is that healthy eating is incredibly important and makes a huge difference to your health and well-being. One of the very best things you can do to start on the path to nutritious, healthy eating is visit a health and wellness retreat, such as Chi Of Life. At a retreat that is completely focused on nourishing your body with quality food (while educating you and giving you experience in applying practical skills), you will understand the positive impacts a quality diet can have on your life.

    Healthy eating can reduce your risk of some diseases, facilitate and support weight loss and the maintenance of a healthy weight, improve your mood and sleep, provide you with more energy, build bone strength, facilitate good oral health, protect you from some infections and certainly enhance your sense of well-being.

    Tip #2: Stop smoking

    All over the world, smoking is a leading cause of ill-health and premature death. Smoking tobacco not only contributes to the development of disease in the person who smokes the tobacco, the health of those who breathe in second-hand smoke can also be compromised. If you are a smoker, don’t despair: many millions of people throughout the world have successfully quit their smoking habit and are now enjoying the health benefits and healthier lifestyle of being cigarette-free. It is possible!

    By quitting smoking, you are making a hugely positive difference to your health. You reduce the chances of having diseases known to be caused by cigarette smoking—such as emphysema, lung and mouth cancers, heart disease and stroke—and you are bound to notice health benefits almost instantly.

    Tip #3: Be physically active

    Engaging in physical activity and exercise is tremendously important for good health and well-being. Regular, moderate-intensity physical activity can reduce the likelihood of you contracting diseases including Type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and some cancers. Physical activity is also a significant component in weight reduction and management as well as osteoporosis prevention.

    The health benefits of physical activity can be both immediate and long-term and, most importantly, can significantly improve your quality of life. Much evidence convincingly shows that physical activity can help depression, lift mood, promote relaxation and improve sleep.

    Tip #4: Limit alcohol consumption

    While the moderate consumption of alcohol is part of many cultures and lifestyles, excess drinking is associated with a range of issues. Some of the risks of excessive alcohol consumption are serious and can even threaten life. The lifetime risk of harm caused by alcohol consumption increases according to quantities consumed. Health issues related to alcohol include stomach ulcers and other digestive disorders, liver disease, malnutrition and dietary deficiencies, problems with memory and concentration, mental health conditions (including suicidal behavior), problems sleeping, weight issues (including overweight and obesity), high blood pressure, stroke and some cancers. This is not an exhaustive list and does not include the range of social and professional repercussions.

    To enjoy a healthy, active lifestyle, alcohol consumption should be restricted and, for certain populations (such as pregnant and breastfeeding women), zero alcohol consumption is recommended.

    Many health and other benefits come from living a healthy lifestyle. Focusing on what is good for you and your body increases your quality of life, reduces a range of health-related risks and increases your chance of leading a long, healthy and happy life.

    What ways do you live a healthy lifestyle?


  4. Travel in Style: How to Be Comfortable and Fashionable on the Go

    June 16, 2015 by Kara Perez

    travel in styleTravel is a dream for many. Beautiful sights, new foods and different cultures are all there to be experienced. I know studying abroad was one of the best decisions I made when I was in college. I was lucky enough to get to spend a semester in Adelaide Australia, and then a week in New Zealand on my way back to the states.

    Getting somewhere so far from home when I was 21 was an incredible experience. What was also an experience was the flight there. It was a 27 hour flight in total. I started on the east coast of the US, flew to Los Angeles and then to Sydney, Australia. The I flew 1/3 of the way across Australia to get to the city of Adelaide. It was a LOT of time on a plane!

    Whether you’re going for a 27 hour flight or a 2 hour flight, you want to be comfortable for your flight. You probably also want to look presentable. If you’re being picked up by a significant other or headed to a business meeting you want to travel in clothing that’s versatile and professional as well as comfortable.

    Your sweatpants don’t have to rule the runway when you travel. You are not obligated to yoga pants and flip flops! Think chic but basic for a pulled together plane outfit. Starting from the ground up, here’s how to put together a comfortable and fashionable outfit so you can travel in style.

    Shoes

    Your shoes should be comfortable, easy to remove and preferably light. Try a slip on canvas shoe or a ballet flat if you’re a woman. Men can wear a canvas sneaker as well. Avoid heavy boots or things that must be hooked and laced, as going through security will take longer.

    Bottoms

    I prefer pants to skirts or dresses when I travel. A dark wash jean looks great on everyone, regardless of gender or pant size. They work for a causal but still professional look and jeans are always in style.

    Top

    To balance the dark bottom you’ve got on, try a light colored top. Men, a classic white button down can do you no wrong! Choose a light weight fabric. Ladies, a red top is perfect for a statement piece. It’s a bold color that looks good on a variety of skin tones too. Sleeveless is perfect for summer months.

    Layers

    Let’s face it, planes are always over air conditioned. Gents, bring a sweater to pull over your button down top. Ladies, a black cardigan or blazer will keep you warm and looking good! All three items are easily stored in a carry on bag and not bulky.

    I wouldn’t recommend wearing too much jewelry when traveling. You’ll have to take off bracelets and necklaces at security so go with a nice but subtle pair of earrings and a watch (track that time change!). I recommend a bold color for your top to take the place of jewelry. As long as your clothes are well made, they’ll convey the message that you’re pulled together and stylish as well as any jewelry can.

    When you look good you feel good! The reverse is true as well. If you travel in an outfit that makes you feel good you’ll enjoy your trip more. So next time you get ready to travel, you should try to travel in style!

    What are your favorite outfits to travel in? Do you swear by any one clothing item? How do you travel in style?


  5. Less is More: How to Simplify Your Summer Beauty Routine

    June 9, 2015 by Kayla

    419120748_e0e8e33355_zI don’t know about you, but my summer schedule is packed! With a lot more seasonal and special events, like weddings, baby showers, 4th of July celebrations, and weekend bar-be-ques, I have a lot going on and time is of the essence.

    When my time gets more limited, I look for ways to cut down on the amount of time my daily routine takes, especially in the makeup department. I don’t like to spend hours getting fixed up and ready for the day only to have my face melt off by 10 a.m. because it’s so hot. Therefore, I’ve embraced the “less is more” approach to my summer beauty routine. Here’s how you can too with just a few simple changes or product swaps.

    Foundation

    14310097347_4fed51a76f_zWhile I love the coverage of a liquid foundation, that’s the first thing to go when I switch to my summer beauty routine each year. For 75% of the year, I use a liquid foundation followed by a matte powder to finish off my look. But in the summer I want something quick and easy that won’t melt away and provides some protection from the sun.

    Switching from a liquid foundation to a liquid CC cream does the trick for me. It still provides enough coverage that I feel comfortable, but it’s lighter and doesn’t seem to melt away like my full-coverage liquid foundation. Plus it also takes the place my daily moisturizer and foundation primer too. This way I can take my routine from 3 steps to 1.

    Eye Shadow

    I don’t wear much eye shadow in the summer because I have very oily eyelids, but when I do want a touch of color on my eyes, I use a stick of cream eye shadow. I love this option because I can carry it in my purse and easily re-apply it during a bathroom break if I need to make sure my makeup stays looking fresh for a special event with lots of photos. :)

    Plus when I use a cream eye shadow I only use one color instead of usual three. This also saves me some time getting ready.

    Cheeks

    Instead of using a rosy blush in the summer, I like to use a bronzing powder. This gives me a sun-kissed glow all over instead of only using blush on the apples of my cheeks. Plus it can be easy for some colors of blush to be mistaken for a sunburn if you have a heavy hand when applying them.

    Another great option is to use a cheek and lip combo stick. This is usually a cream blush and lip stick combo product which is water (and sweat) proof.

    Body

    Finally, instead of fake-baking or burning myself to a crisp out in the sun, I like to use a subtle glow tanning lotion instead. This is a much healthier option that you won’t regret making later in life unlike when you expose yourself to skin-cancer-causing rays of the real sun or a tanning bed.

    09

    Do you simplify your summer beauty routine? How?


  6. 7 Ways Living Healthy Can Save You Money

    June 4, 2015 by Kayla

    2480587587_d2f0650970_zThere are  hundreds of ways to save money. But, living a healthy lifestyle is one that not only benefits your pocket book, but your quality of life. Making healthier choices like cooking at home, walking more often and keeping up with your doctor’s appointments will save you money over the long-term and increase your chances of a longer life.

    Simple Living Australia has provided a great list that shows how making healthier choices can also save you money:

    Fewer Doctor Bills

    If you don’t exercise and you stuff your face with unhealthy foods, you are going to have more medical expenses. According to a study by Harvard University, located in the United States, the U.S. spent almost $200 billion on obese-related medical expenses. If you are unhealthy, you are more likely to get cancer, diabetes, asthma and chronic pain. The more overweight you are, the more likely you are to have expensive doctor visits.

    Fewer Medications

    If you live a healthy lifestyle, you simply are not going to need as many medications because you are less likely to get sick. When you eat healthy foods and are active, you reduce your risk of getting sick, which means less money forked out to the pharmacy.

    Smaller Dental Bills

    After a long day at the office or on the beach, flossing and brushing can feel like a waste of time. But, if you take care of your teeth by regularly brushing and flossing and avoiding damaging foods (specifically soda!), you could save yourself thousands of dollars. Brush those teeth, hit the dentist up for your cleaning and avoid unnecessary dental repairs.

    You Eat Out Less

    Healthy eaters eat at home more often. It’s healthier and cheaper to cook from home. You can make yourself several meals for the price of eating out for dinner once. When you use coupons and shop smart, you’ll save even more cash.

    Cheaper Health Insurance

    Most insurance companies require you to take a physical exam before you can be approved for a life insurance policy. They can charge you more, or even deny you coverage, if you are not living a healthy lifestyle. Your weight and smoking habits are almost always considered when submitting an application.

    You can also score lower cost health insurance if you are living a healthy lifestyle as well. Most companies take your weight, eating and drinking habits into consideration when offering you a quote for coverage.

    Clothes May Be Cheaper

    It’s a sad fact that purchasing plus size clothing is not only frustrating, it can also be more expensive. You can save cash by eating healthy and maintaining a healthy weight so you don’t have to buy a new wardrobe.

    Save Money on Unhealthy Habits

    Living an unhealthy lifestyle can be surprisingly expensive. An addiction to smoking, you will drop upwards of $20 a pack! If you smoke one pack a day, that’s $140 a week or $560 a month! Yikes. Cut back on the alcohol and junk food to save even more money.

    Healthy living improves your chances of a longer, better quality life. Save some money while you lose weight and get healthier and use that extra cash to take yourself on a vacation or pay off some bills!

    What are some other ways being healthy can save you money?


  7. Summer Lip Colors for all Skin Tones

    June 2, 2015 by Kara Perez

    lipstick-548171_640While it’s not technically summer until later this month, the 21st to be exact, I know in my neck of the woods the sun is out and the heat is happening!

    Summer is my favorite season. I love the colors, the energy and the time outside. It’s time to trade our dark jeans for summer dresses, boots for sandals, and slather on sunscreen when we leave the house.

    A season change is also the perfect time to mix up your make-up routine. While winter tends to favor the darker palettes and spring is all about florals and pastels, summer is the time of bright colors and sweat-resistant make-up. (Time to try cerulean eye liner or neon nail polish!)

    I favor a bold lip color in summer for three main reasons: lipstick is fun, easy and affordable!

    A statement lip paired with some mascara can be the only make-up a girl needs to wear for a night out dancing. It’s easy to fix if it smudges, a lipstick container is small enough to fit into a purse or pocket, and lipstick is a make-up option that’s affordable with a high reuse value. With quality brands and low prices available at drug stores, you can grab a lip color for $6. Sounds like the perfect make-up for summer and for me!

    I also like to stick with colors that look good on everyone. Who among us hasn’t shared a lip color with a friend at a bar or a party? You want to look good and you want your friend to look good too! Whether you’ve got a Grace Jones skin tone or a Emma Stone skin tone, there are a few shades out there that are universally flattering. 

    Coral

    Coral is one of my favorite colors on or off lips! I love it for summer make-up especially, as it has a fresh and fun feel. It’s very versatile and flattering for a variety of skin colors. For lighter skinned ladies, the pink in coral works with the pink in your cheeks. For those with a medium skin tone, with olive or yellow tones to their skin, coral can be closer to their natural lip color, so it can be a toned down touch of color. For ladies with darker skin, coral is a great jolt of color, perfect for a fun summer night out!

    Bold and Deep Red

    A strong, red wine lip color is a classic no matter what your skin tone. Red lips are a statement make-up look and one of my favorites. Whether it’s to dinner with the parents or a night out with friends, red lips work well in a variety of settings. For dark skinned girls, red highlights your entire face and works with your blue skin undertones. For medium skinned girls, a bright red can contrast with your darker hair. Lighter skinned girls will see more of their rosy cheeks with some red lipstick to accent them.

    Beige

    While beige may sound a bit boring at first, this ain’t your grandma’s lip color! Beige lips are fashionable and tell the world that you’re confident enough to pull off a non-traditional color. Plus, they look good one everyone! Beige can wash people out, so look for one with a glossy finish rather than a matte one.

    What’s your favorite summer lip color?


  8. Summer 2015 Capsule Wardrobe: Month 1 Update

    May 29, 2015 by Kayla

    capsule collageI’m almost 1 month into my first capsule wardrobe experiment. I started with my Summer 2015 capsule wardrobe on May 1 and I plan to keep it around until August 31 for a total of 4 months.

    So far, I’m still loving my first capsule. I haven’t really felt limited other than when I had a baby shower to go to this past weekend when I just wasn’t quite sure what to wear. In hindsight, I should’ve used my maxi dress which is not technically part of my capsule as I only wear it for “special occasions”, like the 2 graduations I’ve had to go to and I also plan to wear it to some other upcoming special events this summer.

    I have learned a thing or two about living with a capsule wardrobe already.

    You Have to Do Laundry More Often

    Because you only have 38 items in your closet, you have to make sure to do laundry more often so you don’t run out of clothes. This hasn’t really been a problem as I typically do laundry once each week anyway, but I have had to make sure than any clothes that need ironed are pressed right away so I can have them in my closet again right away.

    You Have to Plan Ahead

    I’ve never really been one to lay out my clothes for the next day, let alone the whole week. But with a limited wardrobe you have to make sure you have a plan in mind so you don’t end up with the things you want to wear in the wash. This is also where having a highly mix-and-match-able wardrobe comes in handy so you don’t rely on any one item for too many of your outfits.

    You Should Include Pants in Your Summer Wardrobe, or Start it Later

    Next year I plan to either: start my summer capsule on June 1, or include at least one pair of pants (besides jeans) in it. We have had some rather chilly days in May this year. The coldest was 35F!! I was still stuck wearing capris and skirts when I would’ve been more comfortable in pants. Luckily, my office isn’t too cold and I didn’t have to be outside for long. If I would have had to be outside more I probably would’ve broken my capsule wardrobe rules to get out a pair of pants.

    So, What Have I Made Good Use of so Far?

    I’m almost a month in and I still have about 5 items that I haven’t worn yet. Everything else has been worn between 1-3 times, expect my jeans which I’ve worn 9 or 10 times already.

    It’ll be interesting to see if the scales tip more the further I get into this capsule wardrobe period.

    Overall, my summer capsule wardrobe has been going just fine. I haven’t had any major problems and I haven’t cheated even one time yet. (Go me!)

    Are you considering doing a capsule wardrobe yet?


  9. Money Matters at Every Age

    May 29, 2015 by Kayla

    17309480255_a16a130b05_zMoney matters change as we grow. When you are a teenager, you may be worried about saving for college, buying a car or hanging out with your friends. By age 50, you are likely wondering whether you saved enough for retirement and if you have saved enough money to help your children with college. Tackling money situations as early as possible will help you create good habits and allow you to avoid the pitfalls of debt and no retirement. Low Income Financial Help has provided a list of a few things you need to think about (and maybe a few things you should talk to your kids about too).

    In your 20s:

    Instead of spending your entire paycheck hanging out with friends, here are a few ways you can plan for your future:

    1. Invest in a retirement plan. Most companies offer some type of retirement program; take advantage of this by designating some of your paycheck towards this. The earlier you start the less money you have to set aside each check to earn more money.
    2. Say no to credit cards. Pay for things you need with cash and skip the credit cards. It is too easy to buy things you do not really need and have to spend your paychecks paying off debt.
    3. Save some money: If you plan to buy a house, you will get much better interest rates (read lower monthly payments and lower overall cost) if you have a down payment. Start saving in your 20s and you could easily have a sizable down payment by the time you are 30.

    In your 30s and 40s:

    1. Consider purchasing a home: A house can be a great investment, albeit an expensive one. Save up as much cash for a down payment as possible to reduce your cost and monthly payments. Additionally, only buy a home you can afford and pay it off as quickly as possible.
    2. Invest in the mutual funds: You should have a relatively healthy retirement plan building. Set aside some extra money to invest in mutual funds. This is a great way to build wealth with lower risks. The money is distributed to a variety of investments increasing your odds of better returns.
    3. Purchase life insurance: Ideally, you should purchase life insurance when you get married or have children. This provides financial support to provide for your family if you should die early. Consider term insurance because it is cheaper. If you have a retirement fund and invest wisely, you will not need the investment options whole life policies purport to offer.

    Retirement:

    1. Before retirement try to pay off any debt (including home and cars) this will reduce the strain on your retirement income and allow you to enjoy your golden years without financial worries.
    2. Set up a trust. If you have not done so already, now is a good time to get your affairs in order. Your estate should include a will, power of attorney and instructions regarding the dispersion of financial assets following your death.
    3. Live within your means: If you have saved well, you should have enough money to live comfortably. Remember that medical expenses and other bills can quickly drain your savings, so enjoy your retirement but have an emergency savings on hand to cover unforeseen bills and expenses.

  10. Having Pets Can Help You Stay Healthier

    May 27, 2015 by Kayla

    15922379285_4481fb71d0_zEver since I can remember, I’ve always had a pet. Growing up, my family always had at least one dog and after we moved to the farm when I was 13 we acquired some barn cats, cows, sheep, and we even had a couple of pigs from time to time (though some of these things were raised for slaughter to provide food and income for our family). Having pets can be very costly, but they can also bring some great benefits into your life, like making you healthier.

    Cleanliness

    This may not apply to everyone, but after I started living on my own and having pets in my house I’ve been more focused on keeping my home as clean as possible. I don’t want to have tons of pet hair flying around and I don’t like having messes in my home, so having indoor pets has made me more diligent at keeping my house picked up and clean.

    I also have a cat and even though I try to keep her off of surfaces like the dining table and kitchen counters, you never know what they are doing while you aren’t home. So before I use any of these surfaces for food prep or eating, I always disinfect them first.

    Exercise

    I want my dogs to stay in good shape and they behave better when they get exercise on a regular basis too, so I try to go on regular walks with them. I have two small dogs and one larger dog so I rotate taking them for a walk every 3rd day. For example, I walk dog A on Monday, dog B on Tuesday, and dog C on Wednesday. Then on Thursday I walk dog A again. This may not seem like enough exercise for some dogs, but as I said two of them are small so they don’t need much exercise and the other one is a senior dog who doesn’t get around as well as he used to so a 30-45 minute walk every 3rd day is adequate for him too.

    Companionship

    Because I’m single and I live alone, I would have no one to talk to when I’m at home if I didn’t have pets. My pets are my family and they provide me some companionship when I’m at home. I’ve even been known to talk to them like they are people!

    I’m not the only one that finds companionship from pets. Senior citizens who live alone will live longer if they have a pet to keep them company and they are less likely to be depressed. Pets are known to improve your mood when you are feeling sad or depressed.

    Even though pets can be expensive, and a lot of work, their numerous benefits outweigh the costs for me and I wouldn’t trade my pets for anything.

    Do you have pets? Do you think they help keep you healthier? Why or why not.