How Exercise Helps the Skin

Posted by on May 12, 2016 in green living, Green News, How To's | 0 comments

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Green living is vital to have a clean environment. Simple waste management could help the air we breathe to be fresh and pollution-free. Aside from our lungs, our skin is greatly affected by what we do to our surroundings.

Sometimes it’s easy to forget our skin is an organ. Skin is the toughest organ by far, but it requires a lot of care.

Having a solid skin care routine is extremely important. There are a lot of products on the market, but many don’t truly address the skin’s needs. When you read reviews of Dermaclara and other science-based products, it’s easy to tell that some products are worth your time and money while others are just a waste.

One thing that is guaranteed to compliment your skin care routine is exercise. More and more research is showing that exercise isn’t just good for your cardiovascular health and waistline. Surprisingly, it is also highly beneficial for your skin.

Exercise Gets The Blood Circulating

It’s no coincidence that skin glows a little after a good workout. That glow is a result of increased blood circulation that’s flooding the vessels close to the skin’s surface.

Exercise helps pump blood through the body, which delivers much-needed nutrients and oxygen to skin cells. The blood and oxygen also help the cells get rid of waste, including free radicals that can break down collagen and elastin. By increasing blood circulation exercise helps to improve the look of skin immediately and over time.

Exercise Builds Up the Skin’s Support System

Recent research has found that exercise can help rebuild the epidermis (top layer) and dermis (bottom layer) of skin. As we age the dermis gets thinner and loses elasticity while the epidermis gets thicker because cellular turnover slows. The result is the skin’s support system get weaker, the surface looks duller and signs of aging set in.

A study by McMaster University found that people of all ages could improve both layers of skin through exercise. They examined participants that ranged in age from 20-84. After exercising participants over the age of 40 showed marked improvements in their skin. The epidermis was thinner and the dermis was thicker. Even people as old as 65 had skin that was closer to 30 years old.

The best news is some of these participants didn’t start exercising until the study began. That means it’s never too late to get real skin benefits from working out.

Exercise Can Help Control Acne

One of the major contributors of acne is stress. When we get stressed out it releases a hormone called cortisol, which can cause acne by increasing oil production in the sebaceous glands. Exercise increases endorphin production, a natural feel-good hormone that counteracts cortisol. You’ll stress less and have better skin by working out.

Exercise Can Protect Collagen

Cortisol can also breakdown the collagen that helps support skin tissue and keeps it from sagging. Here again the endorphin boost from working out can help protect the appearance and health of your skin.

Aquatic Exercise Can Help People With Skin Problems

If you have eczema or rosacea you probably avoid strenuous activity and sweating since it can cause flare-ups. The solution is exercising in the water. Water aerobics, resistance training and swimming laps are great forms of exercise that will keep your skin cool.

Boost the Benefits by Working Out Outdoors

Getting out in nature is an easy and effective way to reduce stress, which is good for your general health and skin. Taking a hike, practicing yoga outside or going for a walk in the late afternoon when the sun isn’t quite so strong will provide exercise and boost your mood. You’ll also get a healthy dose of Vitamin D. When sunlight hits our skin it causes 7-dehydrocholesterol (7-DHC) to react and generate Vitamin D.

After working out it’s important to shower and clean your skin as soon as possible. Pay particular attention to the face and any other spots that are prone to breakouts. Follow up with a good moisturizer to provide the skin with additional hydration and protection.

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How Eco-Friendly Industries Are Generating Jobs

Posted by on May 11, 2016 in Earth Friendly Activities, Green Goods | 0 comments

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The eco-friendly movement is growing bigger every day as more people realize the importance of renewable resources, recycling and minimizing waste. It’s helping us fight climate change, but it also has a huge impact on the economy.

As demand grows for green products and cleaner technology so does the need for skilled green collar workers. These are the workers that fill jobs within the environmental sector, but their presence is growing in other industries. It’s one of the biggest emerging markets in recent history and offers a lot of opportunity – if you have the right knowledge, skills and mindset for the job.

Gaining Education for Green Jobs

Creating a workforce that can get green jobs done is the first step in creating a more sustainable world. The educational centers themselves are creating jobs by offering programs and TAFE courses that teach people the vital skills needed to get green jobs. There are many specialties to choose from, each with their own specialized training.

Conservation and Land Management is just one example of a traditional Technical And Furthering Education (TAFE) course that can be used in the environmental sector. Building & Construction is another industry that is dramatically changing due to new green techniques and requirements. Understanding these latest eco-friendly techniques and best practices will help you set yourself apart from other applicants because you’ll bring additional value to the business.

If you’re looking for job security and interested in working within the environmental sector you’ll need to find the proper training program. Some green jobs will require certain degrees and certifications before you can even apply.

Types of Jobs Needed in Eco-Friendly Industries

In the U.S., where the government has led a green jobs initiative since 2010, green collar workers have had an easier time finding work. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has reported that in 2011 green jobs grew four times faster than all other industries.

Green workers are needed at all phases of production from analysis to planning to implementation. Below is just a small sampling of in-demand green jobs.

Green IT

This is one of the fastest-growing green sectors today. Many people don’t realize the impact that IT systems have on the environment. Servers, equipment, and devices eat up a lot of energy – much of which is generated using oil and coal. Green IT workers are needed to design more energy efficient solutions and to incorporate them into businesses and buildings.

Green Building

As noted above, the construction industry offers tremendous opportunity for green workers. From developing green building products to using them on a construction site, there is a long supply chain to work within in the construction industry. The demand here is particularly high, because homes use a substantial amount of energy every year and the construction industry generates a massive amount of waste.

Solar Panel Construction and Installation

Solar panels are one of the most in-demand green products on the market. Solar cells are getting more powerful and cheaper to produce, which means more people are beginning to invest in solar systems.

Horticulturists and Eco-Friendly Landscapers

Home gardens, lawns, and landscaping add value to a property, but they can also significantly increase your eco-footprint. Drought conditions have also made water conservation a serious issue in many parts of the world. Landscapers and horticulturists are playing an important role in creating more sustainable outdoor spaces.

The Corporate Social Responsibility Factor

If you’re wondering why so many businesses are looking for green workers these days the answer may be corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs. More and more businesses are implementing CSR initiatives in an effort to become more eco-friendly and to show customers that they are playing a part in protecting the environment.

Here again is another job opportunity for workers with the right training. CSR consultants are needed to help businesses create a cohesive plan that will effectively reduce their carbon footprint. 

With the world now united in the effort to clean up the environment, reduce carbon emissions and use more efficient resources, green jobs are expected to increase in coming years. Even jobs that aren’t in a “green” industry can easily fall under the eco-friendly umbrella. Workers that prepare now will be in the best position to secure top green jobs well into the future.

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5 Tips for Choosing a Local Electricity Company

Posted by on Jan 24, 2016 in Earth Friendly Activities, Home Furniture, How To's | 1 comment

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Thanks to the deregulation of the energy market, consumers now have the option to compare electricity companies and choose one that fits their budget and needs. This doesn’t apply to all states, but if you live in a deregulated area, then it is important to do your homework before you sign a contract with an energy company.

There are several ways that electricity providers compete with one another. While some offer low prices for long-term contracts, others generate power from renewable energy sources. If you are shopping for an electricity company, then the following five tips can help you find the perfect service for your personal and financial goals:

  1. Find out If Your State Has Deregulated the Electricity Market
    You can obtain this information from two sources: either your current supplier or the state utility commission. Each state has its own utility commission, but the name varies from state to state. Examples include public service commission, utility regulatory commission, public utilities commission and utilities commission, among others.
  1. Research Providers in Your Area
    You can find a list of electricity companies that are licensed by the state in the office of your state utility commission. Alternatively, you can obtain supplier information on the company’s website or by calling it directly.There are also websites that let consumers compare local electricity companies by rates, contract features and other metrics. For example, business and homeowners in Illinois may find this webpage helpful: http://www.localelectricitycompanies.com/illinois/.
  1. Compare Rates
    Find out if the supplier’s rates include generation, transmission, distribution and monthly customer charges. The company should provide a breakdown of all fees in its statements.Also, ask if the provider’s rate is fixed or variable. Fixed rates remain the same for the entire term of the agreement. Variable rates, however, change with market shifts. Variable rates can help clients save money if the rates drop, but if they increase, then customers may wind up paying significantly more without budgeting for the extra expense.
  1. Compare Contracts
    Call the suppliers you are interested in, and inquire about their contracts. Some companies offer plans that lack minimum contract periods and monthly payments. Other suppliers offer contracts with minimum terms that last several years. Such contracts prevent clients from cancelling early. Ask the company about the length of its contracts, penalties if you break the contract, and what happens when the terms of the contract expire.You should also find out how your credit will affect the agreement. Some suppliers ask clients with questionable credit histories to make deposits.
  1. Discuss Payment Options
    Ask which payment options the company offers. Some contracts have a budget-billing plan. Find out what happens when customers miss payments, and ask about your supplier’s equipment charges, such as fees for special meters.

    Many local electricity companies offer customers a choice of energy sources, including renewable and non-renewable energy. Your electricity supplier should provide details on how it generates electricity. 

There are countless ways for property owners to save money, but most can benefit from keeping their energy bills low. Try these five strategies the next time you compare electricity companies.

Image credit: janoon028/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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Myths and Facts about Paper

Posted by on Dec 31, 2015 in Green Goods | 0 comments

We’ve always read articles on how recycling paper products help our environment but do we really know the myths and facts behind paper production and the recycling process? Here is an infographic on how this process works.

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What Color Are Your Sales Receipts?

Posted by on Dec 26, 2015 in Earth Friendly Activities, Environment News, Green Goods | 0 comments

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It’s likely you can fish a crumpled sales receipt out of the bottom of your purse or your back pocket on demand. These slips of paper are a part of our daily lives. Not many people may know, however, that white thermal receipt paper is likely to contain BPA or similar chemicals that are known endocrine disrupters. Fortunately, there is a newer alternative thermal paper that can show shoppers your store’s true colors. Here’s more about this socially conscious choice.

What Is It?

The traditional white paper strips that come out of a cash register, credit card machine, or calculator likely contain phenols, which are acids used as developer on the paper. The alternative is vitamin C thermal paper that uses a different formulation to achieve the same effect as paper that is not phenol-free. How can your customers tell the difference? The vitamin C receipt strips are yellow, a natural result of the components in the paper.

Why Does Color Matter?

The yellow color of phenol-free thermal paper is a visual giveaway to customers that there is something different about the receipts your company provides. It likely will prompt them to ask about it, giving you and your employees a chance to explain the difference and why you’ve made a better choice for the health of your clients. Even if they don’t inquire about the unusual receipt color, you can feel better knowing you haven’t provided additional phenol exposure to customers or your employees.

Is It Worth the Cost?

Vitamin C thermal paper may be slightly more costly than traditional receipt tapes, but the benefits are many. Studies in recent years have shown that an increasing number of consumers are willing to pay more to patronize businesses they know to be socially responsible. The percentage of people who indicate this preference rises each year. When you set your company apart from the competition in visible ways, you can connect with this group of shoppers. The added expense of yellow receipt paper can easily be offset by an increased customer base of consumers happier to buy from you. Plus, thermal paper is something you likely purchase in large quantities, so you can take advantage of bulk pricing.

In the world of business competition, it can be difficult to differentiate your company from your competitors. One simple and socially responsible way to do that is by switching to vitamin C thermal paper. The health of your customers and your company can benefit in the long run.

Image credit: hin255/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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5 Ways To Reduce Stress In Your Home

Posted by on Sep 21, 2015 in How To's | 0 comments

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For many of us, life has become somewhat frantic, and it’s likely our homes reflect our chaotic frame of mind. It feels like there just aren’t enough hours in the day to get things done, and before you know it, your home is a mess of dirty dishes, unwashed laundry, books stacked up on all surfaces, and dust covering everything… but have no fear! There are things you can do to reduce the stress in your home. Here are five of them.

1. Use Crystals

Crystals? Yes, crystals. They’ve long been believed to be the answer to our daily imbalance, drawing positive energy to our homes. There are hundreds of crystals of different shapes and colours, all used for different purposes. Some are great for emotional wellbeing – calmness and understanding of those around you. Others may prevent physical ailments. Talk to experts who have a wide range of crystals and a wealth of knowledge, like those at Feel Crystals, who’ll advise you on the perfect crystals to suit your needs.

2. Remove Clutter

Clutter equals stress, even if you’re not conscious of it. Avoid having too many ornaments on display. Keep your electrical cords contained. Any appliances in your kitchen that aren’t used for a year probably won’t be again – ditch them. The same goes for clothes. Books and DVDs should go on shelves, not be left all over the place. Children’s toys should be kept away when not in use.

3. Use The Right Colours

It’s long been known that shades of red, orange and yellow spark irritation in most of us. You may want to avoid these colours in big amounts. A small splash of these hues is perfectly fine though – we all need some bright colours in our lives. Instead, shades of green, blue, and brown should be left for bigger areas – whole walls, big furniture items and the like. They invoke a feeling of calmness and a feeling of oneness with nature.

4. Have A Happy Room

If you’ve got a spare room, or even a small area that you can call your own, fill it with items that make you feel calm and happy. Perhaps some nice artwork, souvenirs and vacation snaps, your favourite books, or things your kids made when they were younger. Anything that makes you smile! Go to this area when you’re feeling stressed. You’ll feel better afterwards.

5. Be Technology-Less

While we rely on technology to get things done these days, it can lead to stress without you realising. It’s unrealistic to think you can live life without technology, but it is totally doable for allocated moments in each day in which you stay away from it. However, if there are certain things that relieve your stress – like reading books on your e-reader or listening to your iPod, then they’re okay! Just take short periods of time each day to breathe, meditate, write in a journal, or just relax without the aid of any gadgets.

While most of us have the same idea of what causes stress in our homes, we all have a different stress threshold. Some households can handle a lot of stressors, while for others the end of the tether is reached quickly. Try out these tips and see if the stress in your home is reduced.

Image credit: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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Advocating Environmental Stewardship for a Sustainable World

Posted by on Aug 3, 2015 in Earth Friendly Activities, Save our Planet | 0 comments

Dwindling resources, extreme weather conditions, and natural disasters can be threats to the survival of marine and land species. Unfortunately, modern human activities have brought all three together to wreak havoc in present time. Urbanization, overpopulation, pollution, and irresponsible use of resources have led to the destruction of ecosystems and extinction of species over the past decades. If people continue to turn a blind eye to the damage that is being done to the environment, then there is little hope for a sustainable world in the future.

Everyone who lives in this planet is responsible for taking care of it. Caring for the environment can start by opening one’s eyes to ecological concerns, ethical use of resources, and the relationship between humans and nature. Dancing Star Foundation (DSF) extends its hand to protect the planet by being committed to the advocacy of environmental stewardship for a sustainable world.

DSF is a California based non-profit organization that promotes international biodiversity conservation, animal protection, and global environmental education. Their programs include awareness campaigns through films, publications, lectures and symposia, ecological restoration efforts, and environmental field research.

Awareness plays an important role in environmental stewardship. Some people need a tap on the shoulder, or a nudge on their conscience, before acknowledging their responsibility to the environment and take steps to protect it. Spreading awareness can help multiply the good that can be done for the environment. The global environmental education arm of the Dancing Star Foundation has released several books, documentary films, and videos that deal with environmental and social issues all over the world. These are well researched films and books written by experts. Examples of these are Ecosystems on the Edge which was done in partnership with the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, and Why Life Matters: Fifty Ecosystems of the Heart and Mind by Michael Charles Tobias and Jean Gray Morrison. One advantage of films over books is that they provide graphic images that take people closer to environmental issues. It also makes the threat of ecological extinction more real because viewers are given fact based visuals on the damage that humans can inflict on other species.

The Dancing Star Foundation is not just “all talk”. Aside from spreading awareness, it also takes part in conservation efforts and animal protection. Their trust is to save and protect lives of animals, to use sound conservation strategies for restoring healthy and free populations of species, and to safeguard their habitat. DSF currently owns and maintains an ecological preserve in New Zealand.

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DSF Ecological Preserve in New Zealand

The conservation site covers about 400 acres of land that provides refuge for 7 known invertebrate species, around 126 native species, 11 native bird species. In the US, the foundation’s initiatives and partnerships are geared towards the sanctuary for domestic and wild species. DSF has an animal sanctuary for rescued animals in Central California. This refuge is manned by managers, caregivers, and maintenance staff to take care of their resident animals as well as habitat management and restoration.

The Earth is the only world where humankind can live. As this planet changes, species can go extinct and new life forms can emerge. The world’s resources are dwindling and the culprit is human activity. There is no more room for blind eyes and deaf ears when it comes to environmental issues. The Dancing Star Foundation has shown through its programs that the Earth needs a lot of care. It is time to start being an environmental steward for a sustainable world.

Images from Dancing Star Foundation website.

Sponsored by: Dancing Star Foundation

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