Does Your Boss Have Access to Your Pregnancy/Menstrual Cycle Apps?

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Tracking your menstrual cycle is a great thing.  Personally, I used a hand-held “computer” called “Rabbit” back in the day when I was trying to get pregnant.  I have to assume that it worked, since I did indeed get pregnant.  Later I used it to avoid getting pregnant, and then used it once more to get pregnant a second time.  So, I understand how wonderful it is when you can track certain things with absolute accuracy.  No more writing information down and tracking it yourself, which if you’re as mathematically challenged as I am was a huge pain in the a**.  It was also extremely accurate since you took your temperature every morning and it was recorded immediately so you knew exactly what was what.

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Now in the world of apps, all you do is download a pregnancy/menstrual tracker onto your phone and off you go.  However, the news has come out that if your employer has offered the app to you as part of your health and wellness, they may well be tracking your menstrual cycle and/or your pregnancy journey.  The Washington Post reported that the app called Ovia is sharing your information with your employer.  Now, they claim that your identity is shielded, however, Human Resources would probably be able to target who is who by how pregnant you are.  Employees are being cautioned about how much and what they share on these apps.  Also, when downloading apps, don’t forget that they are free for a reason.  Somehow your data is making someone money.  Do be aware about what you share.  (Nice rhyming, no?)

Do you use these apps?  How does this information make you feel?  Let me know in the comments below.

https://www.mother.ly/news/pregnancy-tracking-apps-your-privacy

 

 

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The Underappreciated Foot

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I’ve got foot problems.  My grandfather had flat feet, and guess whose genes passed that happy physical issue on?  Of course, of all the grandchildren I’m the only one with flat feet.  Consequently, my feet are wide, but not only that, my left foot is a size seven-and-a-half, and my right foot is a size seven.  I buy size seven-and-a-half shoes and hope that my right foot doesn’t step right out of it.  It’s been a lot of fun over the years.  I’ve hardly ever gotten to have those fancy, pretty shoes, mine are all sensible and wearable – boring!

However, in my twenties I had some inserts made that I still use at least three times a week to help with my flat feet.  While these inserts still work, at some point in the future I will have to have new ones made (they are quite old, after all).  I only hope that I’ll be able to afford it.  I did go to a podiatrist about eight years ago regarding my big toe.  It was giving more grief than usual and the pain was getting intense.  He said that the only thing to do would be to break my toe, and put a tiny little rod in it.  If we did that, I’d never bend my toe again!  That of course, was unacceptable as far as I was concerned (and it still is).  There would be no more downward facing dogs, or other Yoga poses I love.  I’d walk with a limp, etc. etc.  That is not happening.  So, even though my toe hurts, I walked over 900 miles last year, and am on course to walk over 1,000 this year.  How do I do it?  I use pads in my shoes.  Yes, that’s all.  I really should be soaking my feet and thanking them for all the work they do for me.  As a matter of fact, that’s what we all should be doing.  Thanking and taking care of our feet.  Where would we be without them?

Below I’ve left a link that explains about the anatomy of the foot in some detail if you’re interested.

https://www.verywellhealth.com/foot-anatomy-and-physiology-3119204

Here are a few links regarding the care of your feet.  Please take care of your feet.  They are so important!

https://www.kuakini.org/wps/portal/public/Health-Wellness/Health-Info-Tips/Out-and-About/How-to-Care-for-Your-Feet

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320964.php

 

Fast Food, A Large Problem is Just Getting Larger

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According to a study done by Boston University and Tuffs University, fast food makes up 11% of the average American’s diet.  It’s also been helping with the increase in obesity, diabetes and heart disease.  So, how has this happened?  Well, the portion sizes have increased over the last 30 years along, with the amount of sodium that is put in these products.  The portion size has increased a whopping 22%.  That actually surprised me, however, I haven’t been in a fast food restaurant for at least 5 years, so I had no idea.

Since, according to this study, 33.6% of Americans eat at a fast food restaurant every day no wonder that according to research, 40% of adult Americans are obese.  Not only are the foods more calorie-dense, but the increase in sodium is also problematic.  Too much sodium can lead to heart disease and strokes.  This is a health crisis, and so far, trying to make adults aware of the problem doesn’t seem to be getting anywhere.

It doesn’t seem as if there is a will to begin the intervention that would help in addressing this situation.  The Trump administration is backing the food industry with pushing back against food labels that would warn consumers about the levels of sodium, fat and sugars in prepared foods.  If you could come up with a solution to this problem of obesity and illness, what would it be?  Leave your ideas in the comments below.

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https://www.bu.edu/research/articles/fast-food-expansion/

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/23/health/obesity-us-adults.html

 

Yes, I’m Still Vegan

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There have been a lot of people in the vegan community who have suddenly decided that they no longer are vegan due to health problems.  The most popular reasoning for this decision is that after numerous 21-day water fasts; drinking detox teas, doing a “colon cleanse”; eating a restricted diet; and traveling to tropical islands, they have discovered they have health problems.  I wonder why?  A 21-day water fast?  Restricted diets?  Detox teas and a “colon cleanse”?  Going to tropical islands which are teeming with bacteria and/or parasites?  Any or all of these reasons could lead to health problems.

Then, there is the “other” reason – just not getting enough protein in their diet.  First of all, has anyone, anywhere ever died of a protein deficiency?  No, of course not.  The amount of protein that the body “needs” each day is small, and there is scientific evidence that if you eat a plant-based diet with plenty of amino acids, your body makes its own protein.  Besides which, certain types of beans have a protein index of up to 28.5 grams of protein per one cup.  In order to round out your protein, brown rice, nuts, and oatmeal help to complete the package.

My journey toward veganism began when I was a child who finally put together the fact that animals had to be killed in order to be on my plate.  I was appalled at the fact, refused to eat and threw a temper tantrum refusing to eat any meat.  After about a week of “discipline” and having meat forcibly shoveled down my throat, I gave in.  There is only so much “discipline” a six-year-old can take.  It took me too many years to give up all animal products, and that is the fact that makes me ashamed.

Why am I still Vegan?  Because I’ve seen the slaughterhouse videos.  I’ve seen the lives of the animals that people put on their plates.  I’ve seen human torture of animals used for meat and dairy.  It makes me sick.  Another reason, as if I needed one, is that eating those animals is what is killing humans; cancer, heart disease, the list goes on, are all linked, again, scientifically, to eating meat, seafood and dairy.

Knowing all that I know, I would never stop eating a plant-based diet.  I refuse to add to the destruction of the planet, to the horrific lives that animals lead in order for humans to eat meat.  If you want to know more about the scientific facts of a plant-based diet, please go to https://nutritionfacts.org/

https://healthyeating.sfgate.com/can-enough-protein-beans-7842.html

 

Tao Te Ching – Verse 29 – We Are the World

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I recently picked up a translation with commentary of the Tao Te Ching at my local libraries’ book sale.  While the book itself was slightly battered, what I found inside is a treasure-trove of wisdom passed down over the last 2,500 years.  Verse 29, We Are the World, relates to today with its emphasis on how the most powerful and wealthy seek to destroy the planet.  Below is Verse 29 as it was translated by Ralph Allan Dale.  Read it, reflect on these powerful words and let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

Verse 29 – We Are the World

 Those who have most power and wealth

treat the planet as a thing to be possessed,

to be used and abused according to their own dictates.

but the planet is a living organism,

a Great Spiritual Integrity.

 

To violate this Integrity

is certain to cull forth disaster

since each and every one of us

is an inherent part of this very organism.

 

All attempts to control the world

can only lead to its decimation

and to our own demise

since we are an inseparable part

of what we are senselessly trying to coerce.

 

Any attempt to possess the world

can only lead to its loss

and to our own dissolution

since we are an intrinsic part

of what we are foolishly trying to possess.

 

The world’s pulse is our pulse.

The world’s rhythms are our rhythms.

To treat our planet with care, moderation and love

is to be in synchrony with ourselves

and to live in the Great Integrity.

Taken from Tao Te Ching  A New Translation & Commentary by Ralph Alan Dale Copyright 2002 by Ralph Alan Dale

 

 

April Goals

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I am aware that this is April Fools Day, but I’m still going to be posting my actual goals for the month.  Believe me, I was definitely tempted to post a bunch of silly goals, but instead decided to go for the real thing – boring though they may be.

For the first time I’ve signed up for Camp NaNoWriMo, which of course is part of the larger Write a Novel in the Month of November.  This being April, I’m going to be working on finishing my children’s book. My over-all goal is 20,000 words.  I’ll let you know how it’s going.

Of course, there are other goals I want to accomplish for the month.  Since it’s now officially Spring, it’s once again time for organization, cleaning and throwing away (or giving away) all those “things” that we don’t use.  I’ve spent some time watching Netflix’s “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo” and I’d love to put what I’ve learned into action.  So, paperwork piles have to go!  Also, I’m planning on getting rid of all the years-old bills that are currently cluttering up my filing cabinet.  I really don’t think that I need bills from the 1990’s in there.

Spring Cleaning is another goal.  I’m sure I won’t finish by the end of the month, since I’ll also be stacking wood once it’s split, but I would like to start before the weather gets too hot.  So, dusting ceilings, walls and vacuuming behind and under all that furniture, etc. etc. How much fun it will be!  Where is Mary Poppins when you need her?

So, my list is short, but the items on it are big and time consuming.  How are your goals for the month shaping up?  I hope you accomplish what you’d like to/need to.  No time like today to start whatever you set your heart on!

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