Why Your New Year’s Resolution Should Be to Eat More Fiber

(NewsUSA) – The start of a new year is a great time to check in with yourself and think about how you want to improve for the year ahead. But unfortunately, many New Year’s resolutions aren’t realistic and wind up lasting just two to three weeks. Here’s a resolution that’s easy to stick to and can also make a big difference in your overall health and wellness: eat more fiber.Fiber can play an important role in reaching your health and wellness goals in 2019. It’s probably best known for its ability to help keep your digestive system moving, but there are other benefits as well – like helping to promote a feeling of fullness.Even with fiber’s well-known health benefits, nine out of 10 Americans aren’t getting enough in their daily diet, according to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2015-2016. Lauren Harris-Pincus, MS, RDN thinks she knows why."Fiber can be confusing," Harris-Pincus explains. "I think many people have experienced tummy trouble when they ate too much fiber and it overwhelmed their digestive system. With a simple strategy of introducing fiber slowly, they can receive all the health benefits without any discomfort."The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend that women get 25 grams and men get 38 grams of fiber every day, but most only average 15 grams. Instead of aiming for 25-38 grams on day one, Harris-Pincus has some tips on how you can make this resolution stick:* Only increase your fiber intake by three to five grams each day. That way, you give your body time to adjust.* Mix in high-fiber foods with your regular diet. As you’re ramping up your fiber intake, start by adding fiber to foods you already eat. It could be as simple as adding a high-fiber cereal to a yogurt parfait or adding nuts and berries to your salad.* Drink more water. Insoluble fiber doesn’t dissolve in water, so make sure you drink plenty of fluids to help carry the fiber through your body. By eating more fiber and drinking more water, you’re helping your digestive system do its job more efficiently.* Find a great-tasting fiber you love. Instead of viewing fiber as a chore, or something you "have to" eat, find a high-fiber option that you can look forward to eating."I think everyone has this idea of fiber as bland and boring," Harris-Pincus says. "But what people don’t realize is that there are tons of great-tasting, high-fiber foods. The easiest place to start is with your morning cereal."Fiber One recently introduced a new fiber-rich cereal that, well, doesn’t taste like a fiber-rich cereal. Fiber One Strawberries and Vanilla Clusters is made with real strawberries and sweet vanilla clusters, but still contains 35 percent of the Daily Value of fiber in every one-cup serving. No pills, nothing to stir, just real food that makes fiber something you can enjoy eating.And for when you’re ready to increase your fiber intake even more, Fiber One Honey Clusters has 40 percent of the Daily Value of fiber, and Fiber One Original Bran has 55 percent.Beyond cereal, Harris-Pincus recommends eating whole fruits and vegetables, leaving the skin on things like apples and potatoes. Beans and legumes are another excellent source of fiber, so don’t shy away from the black beans in your fajitas. For easy snacks, popcorn is another fiber-rich option with four grams of fiber in just three cups of popcorn."Fiber really is overlooked, which is a shame because it can be this great-tasting, powerhouse nutrient," Harris-Pincus explains. "New Year’s resolutions are usually all about cutting calories or increasing protein, when in reality fiber can do all these amazing things for your body. You just have to start eating more of it to realize the benefits." 

Caring for A Long-Distance Senior Loved One

(NewsUSA) – Long-distance caregiving for a parent or senior loved one is a difficult reality for many adults.A study by Home Instead, Inc., franchisor of the Home Instead Senior Care network, finds that 23 percent of American adults currently care for an older relative who lives more than an hour away.Providing care from a distance can be stressful. But if relocating closer to a loved one is not an option, Home Instead recommends the following tips to make providing long-distance care a little easier:1. Establish open communication – When visiting your loved one, make time to meet the individuals who are part of his or her everyday life. Whether that’s a physician or caregiver, it’s important to get to know those involved in the daily care of a loved one.2. Be observant – Do your loved ones avoid answering specific questions about their health? Have they stopped participating in their usual activities? Are they unaware of current events or forgotten important dates? These may be warning signs that they need additional care or help around the house.3. Be prepared – Create a list of your older adult’s medical issues/medications, doctor’s names, and legal documents in case you need to access them from afar during an emergency.4. Spend quality time during visits – It’s easy to get wrapped up in caregiving responsibilities.When you visit, set aside time with your loved one to participate in activities unrelated to caregiving. Go see a movie together, plan a visit to see other family members, go for a walk or simply relax at home.5. Get to know neighbors and friends – Get to know your loved one’s neighbors and identify one or two trustworthy individuals who can check in and give you occasional updates.6. Learn more about caregiving – Find support to help you become a better caregiver.For example, Home Instead Senior Care offers resources that can help family members provide better care and learn skills, such as how to safely move someone from a bed to a chair, how to help someone bathe, and how to prevent and treat bed sores, as well as basic first aid.Family members looking for additional resources and support relating to long-distance caregiving can visit caregiverstress.com or find a local Home Instead Senior Care office by going to www.homeinstead.com/state

Don’t Make These Mistakes after A Collision

(NewsUSA) – In the U.S. alone, there are 10 million car accidents every year, and the tense moments following a car accident, even a minor one, can be scary and stressful for everyone involved.Drivers and passengers can feel confused and unsure of what to do. Even the most experienced and seasoned drivers can make basic mistakes after they have been involved in a traumatic event.Simple, avoidable mistakes could cost you time and money, or lead to personal, medical and legal issues.Here are some of the most common mistakes to avoid after a collision:* Fleeing the scene: Leaving the scene of an accident could land you in serious legal trouble. You may be in shock, but the most important thing to do is stay where you are.Check on your passengers, and once you exit your vehicle, check with the other driver involved in the accident.Try to remain calm and wait for law enforcement to arrive on the scene. If it is safe to do so, use your cell phone to take photos of your vehicle to document the damage that resulted from the accident while you wait for police.* Not reporting the accident:Even if it’s just a minor collision, always report the accident to the police. Never let someone convince you to avoid calling the police.If you decide to make a claim with your insurance company later on, or if you decide to pursue a legal claim, not reporting the accident could hurt your case.* Exchanging too much information: Do not share your driver’s license or who was at fault with the other driver; however, share this information with the police along with your current insurance.Always exchange contact information with the other driver, get contact info from any witnesses, and obtain full insurance details from other drivers involved in the accident.Make sure accurate information is included in the police report, and ask for a copy of the report to edit any incorrect information.* Failing to get medical advice: You may think that you were lucky enough to escape injury, but you should always get a medical checkup after a car accident, especially if you hit your head.Remember, only a medical professional can rule out possible head trauma and other serious injuries.* Having your vehicle repaired at just any shop: You might have to make a decision on-the-spot as to where to have your vehicle repaired. Don’t make a panicked decision when it comes to your safety.Visit www.goldclass.com to find a Gold Class shop that has collision repair professionals with up-to-date training contributing to complete, safe and quality repairs. 

Savvy Marketers Scrap Ads for Stories

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – Marketing a product or service to consumers is arguably a subtle art form – especially these days.
Which is why pop-up and banner ads are now akin to the dinosaur age.
In fact, if you asked the average consumer to recall a banner ad from the last website they visited, don’t expect much. Why? Banner ads are notoriously tuned out by consumers because they don’t engage their attention and emotions.
In addition, it’s much easier now for consumers to avoid these ads with blockers and DVRs.
What does capture consumers’ attention? A good story.
And savvy marketers are exploring new ways to use storytelling to attract and hold consumers’ interest and influence their behavior.
This is more than a hunch. Science supports the power of emotions and stories to engage an audience.
With this in mind, Pressboard, an online content marketing platform, believes that stories are the most powerful way for brands to communicate with consumers.
When an individual hears, reads, or views a story, for example, it prompts an emotional connection. The brain releases oxytocin, the “feel-good” hormone associated with, among other things, sex and childbirth, that promotes a feeling of bonding and connection. Psychological research suggests that stories can influence an individual’s actions and inspire them to make choices and change a behavior in response to a story.
Underscoring this concept, Pressboard launched an experimental website, titled iwantmorecats.com, that offered users the chance to see pictures and videos of cats instead of banner ads. Not surprisingly, it proved popular, according to Pressboard CEO and co-founder Jerrid Grimm.
“Our not-so-secret goal is to help all companies market themselves through stories and in doing so, slowly rid the world of banner ads,” says Grimm in an interview with Adweek.
“People just don’t like ads, not advertisers, not publishers and definitely not consumers,” he notes.
Meaningful content beats banner ads for communicating with consumers, according to Pressboard.
To this end, companies such as Pressboard provide a platform to link brands with media publishers and track what stories resonate.
Some tips for smart storytelling include:
* Engaging emotions with a personal story, such as a triumph over adversity;
* Developing a relationship with your audience by highlighting real people in your content, whether that’s employees or customers;
* Using visuals that support the story and catch the reader’s eye;
* Allowing yourself to be vulnerable and open with your audience, making your brand more relatable;
* Influencing public opinion of your brand by sharing the story on social media where discussion can happen.
In the end, changing behavior is the Holy Grail for marketers; but equally important is the ability to forge emotional connections with readers.
In this way, marketing companies can create a connection with their audience and turn them from interested parties to lifelong customers, in a way that no banner ad can match.
For more information about harnessing the power of stories to make a brand memorable, visit pressboardmedia.com.

Americans Are Flossing in the Strangest Placea

(NewsUSA) – Where have you flossed other than your bathroom? If you’re like nearly 40 percent of Americans, the answer is… in a car.How about on a date? Seven percent admitted to flossing on a date. Another six percent said on an airplane, and then there was the five percent who said in a work meeting.While experts agree that even some flossing – no matter where – beats none at all, the survey by Atomik Research for the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) illustrates a bit of a dichotomy: Only seven percent of Americans name flossing as most important to their personal care routines when it comes to perfecting their smiles, revealing that adults can be better educated about healthy smiles and gums."Healthy gums are the foundation of a great smile," said Steven R. Daniel, DDS, president of the AAP and a practicing periodontist in Murfreesboro, Tenn. "Taking care of your gums means more than just flossing when there’s popcorn stuck in your teeth or when you’re killing time in traffic. It also requires integrating diligent at-home care into your personal care routine and regular visits to a periodontist to ensure your mouth is healthy and free of periodontal disease."So when it comes to our personal care routines, how much of a priority do we place on flossing?Among those surveyed who said they do floss, only 23 percent rated it the single most important part of their personal care routine, as opposed to:* Brushing their hair (48 percent)* Applying moisturizer (38 percent)* Shaving (32 percent)* Cleaning their ears (25 percent)The good news is periodontal disease is preventable and actually reversible by rethinking your oral health regimen. Follow the advice of periodontists – dentistry’s experts in the treatment and prevention of periodontal disease – by brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and having an annual comprehensive periodontal evaluation. Taking these steps will soon give you that strong smile we all crave.Visit Gumblr.org for more information, including articles and quizzes, and to find a periodontist near you who can create a personalized plan to help support a life-long commitment to healthy gums. 

Easy Rinse Reduces Risk of Gum Disease

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – We’ve all been there; that shameful moment when your dental hygenist asks how often you floss, and you most likely reply, “Not often enough,” while he or she clucks disapprovingly and shakes his or her head.
Turns out they know what they’re talking about.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) nearly half of American adults aged 30 years and older (47.2 percent) suffer from some form of gum disease.
Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is one of the main threats to dental health, but maintaining a healthy mouth goes beyond the benefits of a bright smile.
Gum disease is a chronic, inflammatory condition, and recent studies suggest that gum disease and tooth decay may be associated with an increased risk of other inflammatory conditions, including heart attacks and strokes if left untreated.
The CDC describes common warning signs of gum disease, including bad breath, gums that are red, swollen, bleeding, or tender; pain when chewing; loose or sensitive teeth; receding gums; change in bite; and change in the fit of partial dentures. Additional factors that increase the risk of gum disease include smoking, diabetes, stress, and poor oral hygiene.
That said, most people can improve their dental hygiene and reduce their risk for developing gum disease by following a few simple steps:
– Brush. Brush your teeth twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste. Pick a toothbrush style that fits your mouth and feels comfortable, and you will be more likely to use it. If your teeth are sensitive or you want them to be whiter, look around; there’s a toothpaste for that.
– Floss. Floss your teeth once a day. Dental floss is available in a variety of widths and thicknesses, although some people prefer disposable flossers, which are often easier for children to use.
– Rinse. Oral rinses play an important role in a dental health routine. Gum disease is caused by bacteria, but an oral rinse formulated with bacteria-targeting ingredients can help keep gum disease at bay.
Healthy Gums Oral Rinse from TheraBreath contains cetylpyridinium chloride, an ingredient approved by the FDA and clinically proven to kill the germs linked to gum disease.
“Gum disease is more serious than people think. It starts out with just bleeding and sensitive gums, but in its advanced stages, it can cause tooth loss,” says Dr. Harold Katz, founder and chief researcher for TheraBreath.
For more information about keeping your mouth healthy and reducing your risk of gum disease, go to therabreathhealthygums.com.
Healthy Gums Oral Rinse fromTheraBreath is available at Walmart.

A Simple Test to See If You’re Up to Installing Your Own Roof

(NewsUSA) – Sponsored by GAF – Think you’re up to tackling the fourth most dangerous job in America? Well, that’s what you’d be doing if you decide to install your own new roof.According to the latest figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, even police officers have less chance of dying on the job than professional roofers do. And yet countless do-it-yourselfers risk life and limb every year to try to save some bucks and/or prove they know their way around a pneumatic nail gun."There’s no better way to meet an orthopedic surgeon – or an undertaker – than by spending an extended amount of time on your roof," cautions PopularMechanics.com. "One small slip or misstep, and it’s a long way down."With that caveat in mind, here are three questions to ask yourself before committing:* Are you comfortable with heights?You may have had a great time going hot-air ballooning with friends, but it’s an entirely different thing being up 40 feet on a roof knowing that – even after you’ve ripped out all the old roofing and checked for damage – you still have to install things like leak barrier and roof deck protection before you can even think about nailing on new shingles.Again, all while 40 feet off the ground.And all while wearing rubber-soled boots to (hopefully) keep you from tripping on a slick spot, safety glasses to (hopefully) keep you from injuring an eye with an errantly hammered nail, and a harness to (hopefully) keep you from plummeting to the ground when working on a steeply pitched roof. * Are you as strong as you think?You’d better hope so because you’ll be lugging what feels like tons of roofing material and equipment up a ladder.The equipment alone includes (but isn’t limited to): an air compressor, a circular saw, a hack saw, an electric drill, a saw horse, a roofing shovel, a claw hammer, a framing hammer, a chisel, and the aforementioned pneumatic nail gun, which has been described as "basically a weapon."And that ladder? Not only will you need to position it exactly right for safety reasons (extending it 36 inches above the landing or roof eave), but there’s a potentially life-or-death reason why it should be made of a particular material."It’s crucial to use a non-conductive ladder made of wood or fiberglass when working near wires to avoid electrocution," advises Jason Joplin, program manager of the GAF Center for the Advancement of Roofing Excellence (CARE). "Far too many roofers have died because they were using metal ladders."* Do you already have the necessary tools?Remember, that was just a partial list you just read. And as Angie’s List says, "If you have to go out and buy a power saw but don’t plan to use it in the future, it’s probably not a good investment."Having second thoughts? GAF (gaf.com), North America’s largest roofing manufacturer, has made it easy to find the most reputable and adequately insured professionals in your area by searching its website’s GAF Master Elite Contractor database.Oh, and for those wondering, the top three most dangerous jobs are loggers, fishing workers, and aircraft pilots. Cops, incredibly, didn’t even make the top ten. 

How to Defeat A Clog

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7 Steps to Get Financially Fit in 2018

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – As 2017 draws to a close, you may be thinking about next year’s resolutions. While many of us vow to get to the gym, you may want to consider getting fit in your personal finances before 2018 even begins.
Here are seven money moves to make before the clock hits midnight that will start your year on the right foot.
* Declutter and sell: Have an aunt that gives you an ugly sweater every holiday? Consider selling your unwanted clothes, gift cards, electronics, and the like, online. Sites such as Raise, thredUP, and Ebay are great places to sell your unwanted items and earn extra cash.
* Start investing: Investing doesn’t have to be scary. And you can start small (such as taking the extra cash you earned from selling your unwanted items!). The easiest way to start investing is to make sure you are enrolled in your employers’ retirement savings plan. You can also use apps such as Stash, Robinhood, or Acorns to begin.
* Check your credit report: Planning on making any big purchases in 2018? Your credit report contains information about the status of your credit accounts and your bill-paying history. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recommends checking your report at least once a year, and check again before applying for loans for big purchases such as cars or a home. Keep in mind that if your credit is frozen, you can anticipate a $20-$30 charge to unfreeze your credit so a report can be run.
* Make a plan to ditch your debt: Evaluate all the different loans and any credit card debt that you’ve accrued and consider combining them into a single loan with one easy payment. A loan with LendingClub transfers all your different debts into one place, and with a much lower interest rate.
“Managing one payment is a lot easier,” says Alia Dudum, consumer debt expert for LendingClub.
“With lower interest rates on your debt through loan consolidation, you’re setting 2018 up as your best year yet.”
* Create a budget: Ah, the dreaded “B” word. To avoid taking on even more debt in 2018, make a budget to plan your spending. Think about your net income, allocate 10 percent of your paycheck to your savings, itemize necessary expenses, and then you an use what’s leftover for vacations, shopping, and eating out.
* Take a money minute: Get into the habit of scheduling time to look at your spending and checking in on your financial goals. Put an alert on your calendar to check it once a week. You should also make this a family affair by scheduling meetings with your spouse, parents and children to talk about your financial status and your financial goals.
* Reward yourself: If your downfall is spending and racking up credit card debt, for example, allocate a small amount of money to treat yourself to something small once you have reached a specific financial goal, such as paying off that one credit card, not eating out every day, or sticking to your budget.
LendingClub is a smarter way to take your debt head-on in 2018. For more ideas on how to make 2018 a prosperous year, visit www.lendingclub.com to connect with experts who can help.

Are Fewer New Year’s Financial Resolutions A Worrisome Sign of Inertia?

(NewsUSA) – Blame it on things being too good?As America enters the ninth year of a bull stock market, the number of people making year-end financial resolutions is at an all-time low, according to the ninth annual "Fidelity Investments New Year Financial Resolutions Study." And its authors say that’s because so many "are feeling better about their personal financial situation and are generally optimistic about what 2018 will bring."In fact, only a paltry 27 percent of respondents said they intended to make a financial resolution this year. That’s down 16 percent from the high of 43 percent who answered similarly heading into 2014, and – here’s the study’s main red flag – could actually signal a worrisome sense of "inertia" settling in."Now is not the time to take one’s foot off the pedal, because good financial times can represent the best opportunities to help achieve your goals and establish saving and investment habits that can get one through good times and bad," warned Ken Hevert, Fidelity’s senior vice president of retirement.So what were this year’s top three vows?The same as last year’s: save more, reduce debt, and spend less. Where that starts getting interesting, though, is that when you look at those respondents who ended 2017 feeling better about their finances – and they were at a record high – a whopping 66 percent singled out being able to "save more" as a major factor.Dig down to Millennials – who recently surpassed Boomers as the nation’s largest living generation – and it turns out they’re the most euphoric demo of all. Not only did 78 percent of those surveyed report that higher savings had improved their finances, but 90 percent believe they’ll be even better off in 2018.That’s not to imply that all is "Happy Days Are Here Again." (Note to Millennials: That’s the title of a song associated with both Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Barbra Streisand, whom you may have heard referred to as "Babs" by some of your parents.)Fifty-seven percent of all respondents cited "unexpected expenses" as one of their top concerns for 2018, and a large chunk of them were so spooked by all the natural disasters we’ve been experiencing that they’re planning on increasing their emergency funds.Which brings us to the big question anyone who’s ever made any kind of resolution grapples with: How to maintain your momentum past January?As far as your finances go, know that two of the best strategies that worked for the study’s respondents were:* Breaking a goal into smaller, more attainable targets.* Rewarding yourself for hitting milestones along the way.More in-depth tips from Fidelity, titled "3 Ways to Succeed at New Year’s Resolutions," is available at fidelity.com/resolutions. And for those who really want a financial reality check, including tax guidance, there’s "Savvy Money Moves to Make Before Year-End" and "Five Things to Review Annually."Fidelity’s Hevert even has a piece of advice for those who disdain financial resolutions entirely: "Make saving and investing a permanent habit, not just a once-a-year vow."