An Introduction to Acupuncture

With the different medical advances made in recent years, the name acupuncture seems like a thing of the past only witch doctors would perform. But there are benefits to it that might help several conditions. By supplementing your main treatment with alternatives like acupuncture, you might have a better chance at recovery.

Here is everything you need to know about acupuncture.

It has been round for thousands of years. There are records detailing the use of acupuncture as holistic treatment since 1000 BC, but the earliest materials used for the practice were dated at 6000 BC. The goal of the treatment to is give the correct stimulus to return the body to its balanced state.

It uses the concept of meridians and qi. Qi is the name for the energy that flows through the body and is used to maintain health and balance. The meridians are the channels through which the qi flows.

The system consists of 12 main channels that represent the important organs in the body. There are 365 points in the body that are considered the openings to the channels. If there is a disruption in the flow of the qi, the person gets sick.

Acupuncture is used with other treatments. Acupuncture complements other forms of treatment, which means that you also need to improve your diet, take medication, and consider other treatments such as massage, herbs, and heat therapy.

Acupuncture modifies the flow of the qi. To return the flow of the qi to normal, you can disrupt that flow by inserting needles into one of the many channel openings. The needles used are different from the ones used for sewing.

It is mainly used to address chronic illness. Acupuncture seems to work well in addressing chronic pain for a lot of people who have tried various treatments. Although not yet confirmed, the stimulation is believed to boost the body’s ability to release painkillers because the nerves and muscles are stimulated.

Your doctor in Singapore might recommend acupuncture if you have any of the following conditions: headaches, migraine, back pain, menstrual cramps, respiratory disorders, dental pain, osteoarthritis, and many more.

There are different styles of acupuncture. Some styles of acupuncture specialize in various methods. This is why you need to ask your doctor for the options if you have a bleeding disorder, a cardiovascular illness or if you are pregnant. You should only go to a certified acupuncturist to avoid possible complications from malpractice.

There are risks. Although it doesn’t happen to everyone who tried acupuncture, there are risks if you go to an inexperienced acupuncturist. You might experience bleeding, bruising, soreness, infection, and even premature delivery if you are pregnant.

If you are also using a pacemaker, you should not go to an acupuncturist who uses electrical pulses. You will know if an acupuncturist is legitimate if the practitioner examines you first before performing the procedure. You should also asked for details regarding the procedure to know the risks.

Tips for Choosing Appliances for Your Apartment

Most heavy-duty appliances are not made for small apartments in Singapore, which is why you have to be practical when it comes to choosing the right pieces. This also means not having to sacrifice the quality and function of the appliances.

Here are tips to help you choose appliances for your apartment.

Know how to read the appliances specifications. It is not that complicated to understand the power, installation, and usage requirements of appliances. It is nearly similar to the specifications on your smartphone and other devices. You can look up the latest trends in appliances online before purchasing.

Always keep size in mind. Your apartment will not have enough space for huge appliances, but this should not be a problem with newer models that are made specifically for small spaces. If you don’t have a large family and you don’t eat often at home, you won’t need a large refrigerator for example.

Focus on features you need. Modern appliances have additional features to make life easier. This is especially true when it comes to kitchen appliances, but do you really need these conveniences?

If you cook often, you should invest in conventional ovens may be a better choice than convection ovens for example. When choosing the type of stove, you will not need gas if you don’t cook yourself; induction or electric are fine for occasional food preparation.

Don’t buy what you don’t need. You don’t need to equip your kitchen with every type of appliance you can find on a catalogue. Purchase only what you are going to use and what you will need often. Otherwise, it will just look like a store display that take up a lot of space.

Go for energy-saving appliances. Older models tend to use more energy but have fewer features. Maybe it is time to replace your old air conditioner or your refrigerator if it is more than ten years old. New models are expensive, but the long-term cost will let you save more.

Don’t just go for the looks. Large, modern televisions with plenty of features will look spectacular on your apartment, but is it really worth it? If you are not at home most of the time, then why bother if it is just a decoration? Besides, with the pace with which technology is developing nowadays, your current gadget might be obsolete by next year.

Remember: quality over brand name. You should still look for trusted brand names when it comes to appliances, but quality does not mean you have to buy the most expensive appliances. Read the specifications carefully then look for reviews about the specific model before purchasing. Sure, some may look impressive, but can it perform well?

Examine the materials. When you have kids, expect them to poke around the new appliance when you’re not looking. Do not invest in flimsy materials that can’t withstand years of usage and some beating up from curious children.

The 15 Best Anti-Heroes in Video Games

Not all of the most iconic video game characters are heroes. Some of them have a dark past and have made no-so-heroic decisions to achieve their goals.

Wario of the Super Mario series – He is the arch-rival of the series’ protagonist, and why not? His name is Japanese means “bad,” and he was always jealous of Mario and Luigi even as kids.

Alex Mercer of PrototypeThis shapeshifter and a superhuman, among other things. As he uncovers memories of his past, Alex was forced to act after learning that he was responsible for the plague. However, Alex soon lost his faith in humanity.

Paxton Fettel of F.E.A.R.When Paxton merged with a psionic, he slaughtered several staff of a secret project, had dreams about cannibalism, and had a psychotic breakdown.

Agent 47 of HitmanHe’s not just an ordinary assassin, but a cloned specimen with a spotless record.

Dante of Devil May CryDante’s looking for those responsible for the death of mother and his brother. A half-demon, he takes pleasure in hunting supernatural forces of evil.

Max Payne of Max PayneThis former law officer took it upon himself to look for the criminals responsible for the slaughter of his family.

Garrett of ThiefWhen you are known as the most decorated criminal in The Watch and The City, you’re most likely a person who will do everything it takes for personal gain.

Arthas Menethil of WarcraftThe idealistic crown prince turned into a lich when his desire to become a hero and protect the people made him decide to face a dark threat all by himself. Once he took up a cursed blade, however, he was transformed into a death knight.

James Earl Cash of ManhuntAs a former death row inmate, James was the perfect casting for a snuff film because of his emotionless approach to butchering people.

Kratos of God of WarAfter becoming a pawn of Ares, Kratos soon learned that he was the prophesied son who would eventually usurp Zeus. His rampage against the Olympians was fueled by their trickery and ill use of his powers.

Cole MacGrath of inFamousA simple delivery boy turns into a superhuman with the power of elektrokinesis. After his exploits, however, he was considered as a felon or a bioterrorist because oft eh number of casualties that resulted from a plague.

Kazuma Kiryu of YakuzaHe had plans for the future with the Dojima Family, but it all came crashing down when he was pinned as a suspect for the death of the family patriarch.

Alucard of CastlevaniaDespite being the son of Dracula, Alucard took it upon himself to oppose his father after his mother’s passing.

Sweet Tooth of Twisted MetalWhen you have a face of a killer clown, it’s not easy to convince people that you’re a good guy.

Trevor Philips of Grand Theft Auto VMostly unstable, resentful, and will easily give to his emotions, Trevor is someone you don’t want to cross. However, he shows a sentimental side that made him the most popular character in the game.

Self-Reflection: Are You Unconsciously Bullying Others?

Bullies need help too like their victims, in fact much more so because they have a lot of problems to deal with, not the least of which is to acknowledge their horrible actions and how they cause harm to people.

If you are reading this, then you might have been called a bully once. If that is so, then you are on the right track to becoming a better person because acknowledgement is the first and most difficult step to take.

A bully doesn’t always need to physically abuse victims

Most bullies who are never reprimanded for their actions are excellent emotional manipulators because they know they don’t need to resort to physical violence to scare their victims. Are you the type who always get what you want even at the inconvenience of other people? Have you been called bossy occasionally?

A bully isn’t just a grade schooler

Bullies exist in workplaces. They are usually the ones who love to order people around even if they have no authority do so; use threats to make people yield for them; and always has a beef with someone and doesn’t seem to have a lot of close friends.

You have a short temper

You don’t have to throw tantrums at work to be considered a bully, because passive aggressive comments that you think are clever can be considered a form of bullying. You love humiliating people and seeing them get embarrassed even more despite acknowledging they made a mistake.

You’re fascinated with insecure people

Bullies feel strong around people who have low self-esteem and avoid confrontation. Just because no one wants to stand up to you doesn’t mean you are strong. In fact you are weak, because you can only exercise your power on people who don’t want any conflict. You can also be a bully if you love evoking discomfort in another person and seeing them fail.

You don’t understand difference

Do you think your co-worker or classmate looks different than most people? Does someone you know speak or dress differently than you? The world is bigger than the bubble you build around yourself and everyone is unique.

It is none of your business what the other person looks like, prefers to dress in, who to date, and what to do on their spare time and with their money. If you can’t wrap your head around the idea of diversity, then the problem isn’t the world, it’s you.

You have plenty of problems yourself

There is no excuse for bullying, even if you were bullied yourself before. Think about why you bully other people now; is it because you’re angry at someone? Do you feel insecure? Does your victim deserve the shame? Remember the problem is with you, not your victim so if you are having a difficult time acknowledging your mistakes and don’t know how to deal with it, seek help and make amends.

4 Cold Soup Recipes for Your Family

Who says you can only enjoy soup on rainy days in Singapore? Try these cold soup recipes to cool down this summer.

Chlodnik

Ingredients: 2 grated cucumbers, 1 pound beets with greens, 1 grated dill pickle, 1 ½ cups kefir/buttermilk, ¾ cup sour cream, 2 tablespoons scallions, 4 halved hard-boiled eggs, 2 teaspoons dill, 4 cups water, and salt

Preparation: Separate the stems and greens on the beets. Scrub the beets before placing them in a pot with water. Bring pot to a boil, then uncover and cook for 10 minutes. Drain and let the beets cool. In a separate pot, place the beet stems and greens with 4 cups of water and half a teaspoon of salt.

Bring to a boil then simmer for about 5 minutes. While cooling, grate the beets then add them to the beet stems and greens. Stir in cucumber, pickle brine, pickle, buttermilk, scallions, sour cream, and a seasoning of salt and pepper. Cover the pot and chill for 30 minutes. Serve with dill and eggs.

Smoky Salmorejo

Ingredients: ¼ teaspoon grated garlic, 2 pounds halved tomatoes, 1 teaspoon sherry vinegar, 4 bread slices with crusts removed, ¼ cup smoked olive oil, 4 seedless green grapes, 1 tablespoon roasted almonds, and salt

Preparation: Grate the tomatoes and discard the skins. Make cubes out of the bread slices and toss with the grated tomatoes to create a mixture. Place the mixture in a food processor then wait for 15 minutes before pulsing it. Then, add vinegar and grated garlic and gradually pour the smoked olive oil. Strain the mixture in a bowl and season with salt before covering and refrigerating it for at least an hour. Serve with smoked olive oil, grapes or almonds.

Golden Beet Gazpacho

Ingredients: 1 pound peeled and steamed golden beets, 1 garlic clove, 1 shallot, 1 peeled and seeded cucumber, 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 3 tablespoons olive oil, 2 cups water, and sea salt

Preparation: Place all the ingredients except salt in the food processor and blend until smooth. Add salt, more sherry vinegar or lemon juice if desired, then chill for an hour. Garnish with your choice of toppings (micro greens, chives, avocado, and hemp seeds).

Chilled Yogurt Soup

Ingredients: 2 cups plain Greek yogurt, ½ cup walnuts, ¼ cup dried rose petals, 1 ½ cups ice water, ½ seedless and peeled cucumber, ½ cup golden raisins, ¼ cup mint, ¼ cup chives, ¼ cup dill, salt and pepper, and ground sumac

Preparation: Preheat oven to 350°F while spreading the walnuts in an oven-safe plate. Toast walnuts for 10 minutes, then cool before chopping. In a bowl, combine rose petals with cold water and let stand for 20 minutes. Drain then squeeze the petals dry.

In another bowl, whisk yogurt with ice water, then stir in cucumber, dill, raisins, walnuts, chives, mint, and rose petals. Season with salt and pepper before refrigerating for about an hour. Serve with sprinkled sumac.

Tips on Teaching Kids on Emergency Preparation

Earthquakes and floods are becoming more common in recent years even in Singapore, that is why people should be prepared to act appropriately when needed to avoid panic and injuries. These can be frightening even for adults, but children’s preparedness for disasters are usually overlooked unless there is an occasional school drill.

Here are tips on how you can prepare your kids at home for emergencies.

Read up on natural disasters

Understanding what happens during an emergency might help family members calm down and to think of better ways to deal with the situation. Explain why they need to be calm and to acknowledge that fear is normal but it should not get in the way of doing what is supposed to be done.

Even children who cannot yet read will be able to pick up useful information by reading books on topics such as earthquakes, flooding, waterspouts, heatwaves, etc.

Prepare emergency kits

No one can be fully prepared for unpredictable natural phenomena, but you can control what your family should do during and after an emergency. There might come a time when you might have to ask them to help treat a wound or fracture or how to call for help when you are injured or immobilized. Older children should know basic first aid and how to use a flashlight or emergency light, mobile phone, and to pack light essentials in a few minutes.

Let them participate in emergency preparation

Ask the children to help identify items needed for an emergency including where to find flashlights or emergency lights, finding the emergency exits and stairs, and what to bring during an evacuation. Letting them read a checklist can keep their minds preoccupied to avoid panic.

Don’t forget to plan where to meet and how to get there in case you get separated during an evacuation. Children should be familiar of the escape/evacuation routes in the apartment complex. You can do this by drawing a map or showing them where the stairs and exits are. Role-playing is also a fun way to help them remember the information.

Prepare them for school

Schools occasionally schedule a drill, but you can also help b using the same techniques needed at home. They should have your contact number and address at all times in case they get separated. If possible, you can post important information such as blood type and allergies on the child’s identification.

Teach them when to call for help

What if your child encounters another person who might be in need of help? Children should be taught how to assess an emergency situation without having to use a lot of medical terms. It can be as simple as pointing out that if someone is lying down on the ground, the person might need help.

Before calling for help, however, remind them that they should be somewhere safe before calling for help. Then, make them remember and understand keywords such as “ambulance” and “emergency” if their vocabulary is limited.

Introducing the New Food Pyramid

Most legitimate diet programs have a chart or diagram that lists down how much nutrient or vitamin your body needs on a daily basis. The most famous diagram used for nutrition is perhaps the food or diet pyramid that illustrates the ideal serving for each basic food group.

As a parent with growing kids, it is important not only to keep your children well-fed but to feed them the right food for optimal growth. Here is a brief guide to the food pyramid nutrition.

Purpose

The purpose of the food pyramid is to provide an easy guide for healthy eating, which means there is a clear illustration of how much carbohydrates, protein, vitamins, fat, and minerals are needed to be healthy. The division of the type of food is based on the type of nutrients they contain. The aim of following the guide is to get the right balance of all the essential good stuff without over-consumption of the other food groups.

Old Pyramid

The structure of the pyramid should tell you that you should not consume more of the food that belongs to the top, but you need to eat more of each food group from the second level to the bottom level. This can be used both to maintain a healthy weight or to gain weight because there is a minimum and maximum number of servings for each food group.

In the old pyramid food group, you should consume sweets, oil, and fats the least because they belong on the top of the pyramid. Below that are classified milk, yogurt, and cheese as well as meat, fish, poultry, eggs, beans, and nuts. You should only have 2 or 3 servings per day. After that are the vegetables and fruits, which you will need 2 to 4 servings to meet daily requirements.

At the bottom of the pyramid are bread, cereal, rice and pasta; which means you should eat 6 to 11 servings per day. In the old pyramid, the ideal calorie level for women, children and elderly is about 1,600, while for teenage boys and girls it should be between 2,200 to 2,800.

New Pyramid

The new food pyramid is updated to emphasize a balanced diet without having to count calories. It also has six food groups instead of the five from the old pyramid. Instead of the rows from top to bottom, the pyramid is now divided into columns. On the leftmost column belong grains, especially whole grains in which the daily recommended amount is 6 ounces. Next are vegetables which should equal to 2 ½ cups per day.

After that are fruits which should equal to 2 cups daily. Next is a thin column that belongs to oils which should be consumed sparingly. Next is milk or dairy, which should amount to 3 cups daily. Last are meat and beans which should not be more than 5.5 ounces daily. It even has a recommendation of a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise for adults daily, and 60 minutes minimum for children.