Improve Wellness with Affordable Bathroom Upgrades
(Family Features) Wellness is at the forefront of nearly everyone’s mind, including keeping germs at bay and creating surroundings that promote mental and physical health. Even small, but important, spaces like the bathroom can benefit from changes with wellness in mind.
A bathroom can be one of the easiest rooms in your home to give a little extra TLC toward creating a healthier lifestyle. These cost-effective measures can turn your bathroom into a more practical, functional space that promotes your well-being.
Switch Up Surfaces
The countertops in your bathroom, much like the flooring, must be able to withstand a lot of water. Nonporous vanity tops, such as those made from quartz, hold up to being wet constantly and can help keep germs from breeding. In addition to being easy to clean, a solid-surface option like quartz never needs to be sealed or polished, making it an aesthetically pleasing, long-lasting option.
Bathrooms are often hot and steamy places, and water vapors in the air can carry potentially harmful chemicals from cleaning products. Green cleaning products are made to control the spread of bacteria and viruses using safe and effective means. Not only are they helpful in preventing asthma attacks and other respiratory ailments, but they are a low-cost way to improve overall indoor air quality.
What you use to clean yourself is just as important. Using green or organic personal care items can help reduce toxin exposure and lessen the likelihood of an allergic reaction.
All that steam can affect your health in other ways, too, since it creates a humid environment that encourages mold and mildew. A heated towel rack is an inexpensive way to add a touch of luxury to your space while generating heat that helps reduce humidity and the growth of mold and mildew, therefore benefitting indoor air quality.
Heated towel racks like those from Amba Products come in a variety of finishes and styles to coordinate with your decor. For modest accommodations, the Radiant Small is a space-saving choice, and freestanding models are available if wall space is at a premium. Another advantage: Since the racks dry towels, they’ll stay mildew-free longer and don’t need to be washed as often, which helps save valuable natural resources.
Enhance Air Quality
Creating a green, spa-like oasis with plants can bring wellness benefits that don’t break the bank. Indoor plants help rid the environment of pollutants, and the energy and ambiance they add may have mental health benefits, too. Plants like mother-in-law’s tongue or peace lily are popular options to incorporate as natural air purifiers.
A bathroom’s color palette can also play a role in your wellness goals. Warmer shades like red and orange enhance energy while cooler colors like green and blue can be calming.
Begin planning bathroom upgrades that improve your health and well-being with more tips and ideas at ambaproducts.com .
SOURCE: Amba Products
Simplify Security this Back-to-School Season
(Family Features) The beginning of a new school year offers plenty of excitement each fall, but it can also be a stressful time for parents and students alike.
As expensive electronics like laptops and tablets become increasingly common for student use in classrooms and at home and complex schedules require students to bike to school or enter the house after school with minimal parental supervision, it can often be challenging for families to juggle the changes that back-to-school season brings.
To help alleviate back-to-school stress and safeguard high-value purchases, Master Lock, the leading name in security for more than 100 years, offers a variety of solutions to provide peace of mind for both parents and students – whether enrolling in elementary school or heading off to college.For everything from padlocks for school lockers to bike locks for students on the go and personal safes for dorm room storage, parents and students can visit MasterLock.com to explore back-to-school security products designed to safeguard everything worth protecting.
Secure Lockers with Ease
As one of the most known and widely used padlocks for back-to-school season, the Master Lock 1500D Combination Dial Padlock offers a reliable, keyless solution to help protect students’ personal belongings while in the hallway or locker room. With a shackle made of hardened steel and a locking mechanism with anti-shim technology, this padlock provides maximum security with extra resistance against cutting and sawing. Plus, the easy-to-use dial and three-digit combination allow for quick and convenient access between classes when time is tight.
Safeguard Your Bike or Scooter
Whether heading to school or commuting to campus, the Master Lock 8143D Combination Cable Bike Lock offers on-the-go security for students of all ages, especially those who may not be able to drive yet or simply prefer to ride a bike or scooter. Made with braided steel for flexibility, a protective vinyl coating for added weatherability and a preset four-digit combination for keyless convenience, this bike lock also features a self-coiling design for easy use and compact storage in a locker or backpack.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images (girl opening locker)
SOURCE: The Master Lock Company
Make Healthy Easy with Grapes
(Family Features) If you’re like many Americans who put a priority on well-being, choosing simple yet healthy snacks and ingredients is an easy first step. For example, grapes are a popular and convenient fruit that can also be an ally in wellness, offering an abundance of health benefits that can help you get (and stay) on the right track.
The next time you enjoy an outdoor adventure, pack along a healthy snack such as California grapes. They can go with you on hikes and bike rides or to the gym as a healthy and hydrating source of energy. Heart-healthy grapes also deliver beneficial antioxidants and other polyphenols and are a good source of vitamin K, which supports bone and heart health. With no need to peel, cut, core or slice, grapes are perfectly portable when you’re on the go.
As an easy, versatile ingredient that can be used in a wide variety of recipes, grapes offer delicious taste, texture and color – plus a healthy boost – that make them an appealing addition to snacks and meals. An added bonus: Grapes help support heart, brain, colon and skin health.
Crunchy Salad Pizza on Cauliflower Crust is a simple way to get your fruits and veggies in a fun, tasty recipe. When it’s time for a filling yet nutritional dinner, Warm-Spiced Chickpeas and Couscous with Grapes and Arugula makes for an ideal vegetarian meal. Plus, this easy-to-make dish includes 8 grams of fiber to help support colon health.
Grapes and seafood are a classic combination, and this Roasted Salmon and Grapes with Pistachios Over Fresh Greens is no exception. A perfect dish for family dinners or inviting guests for a meal, it offers antioxidants and other polyphenols from grapes along with healthy omega-3 fats from fish.
Whatever your path to health, eating well and encouraging healthy habits can be deliciously easy with the benefits of grapes. Find more health benefits and good-for-you recipe ideas at GrapesFromCalifornia.com.
Grapes and Your SkinWhile naturally hydrating and delivering beneficial antioxidants and other polyphenols, grapes also offer more: they may help support healthy skin even when exposed to UV light. In a study conducted by the University of Alabama, subjects consuming 2 1/4 cups of grapes every day for two weeks showed increased resistance to sunburn and reduced markers of UV damage in skin cells.
Crunchy Salad Pizza on Cauliflower Crust
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
- 1 frozen cauliflower pizza crust (11 ounces)
- 1 tablespoon, plus 4 teaspoons, extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and trimmed
- 1 medium fennel bulb, quartered and trimmed
- 1 medium yellow bell pepper, halved and trimmed
- 1/2 medium red onion
- 16 black California grapes, halved
- 1 cup canned or cooked chickpeas, drained and rinsed, divided
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
- 2 tablespoons pesto
- salt, to taste
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 ounce fresh goat cheese, crumbled
- Heat oven to 400 F. Place frozen crust on large, parchment-lined baking sheet and brush top lightly with 2 teaspoons olive oil. Bake until crust is lightly golden, about 10 minutes. Transfer to cutting board and cut into quarters.
- Using mandolin, peeler or large, sharp knife and cutting board, thinly slice carrots, fennel, bell pepper and onion. Transfer to mixing bowl and add grapes and 1/2 cup chickpeas. Add parsley, pesto and 1 tablespoon olive oil; toss well. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Using fork, coarsely mash remaining chickpeas and remaining oil; spread among pieces of crust. Mound grape-vegetable mixture on top. Dot with goat cheese and serve
Nutritional information per serving: 490 calories; 9 g protein; 66 g carbohydrates; 22 g fat (40% calories from fat); 4 g saturated fat (7% calories from saturated fat); 30 mg cholesterol; 380 mg sodium; 4 g fiber.
Roasted Salmon and Grapes with Pistachios Over Fresh Greens
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 7-8 minutes
- 4 wild sockeye or coho salmon fillets (about 5 ounces each)
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- salt, to taste
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1/3 cup dry white wine
- 1 cup green California grapes
- 1/4 cup shelled, unsalted pistachios, coarsely chopped
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped Italian parsley
- 5 ounces baby spinach
- 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- Heat oven to 400 F. Lightly oil shallow, 9-by-13-inch baking dish.
- Pat fish dry and place skin side down in pan. Brush fillets lightly with 1 tablespoon olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper, to taste. Pour wine in pan, scatter grapes around and sprinkle pistachios and parsley on fish.
- Roast salmon 7 minutes for medium-rare; 8 minutes for medium.
- In large bowl, toss spinach, onion, remaining oil and vinegar. Season with salt and pepper, to taste; toss again and divide among four plates.
- Place fish on top of greens. Spoon roasted grapes around fish.
Nutritional information per serving: 360 calories; 31 g protein; 12 g carbohydrates; 19 g fat (48% calories from fat); 3 g saturated fat (8% calories from saturated fat); 65 mg cholesterol; 105 mg sodium; 2 g fiber.
Warm-Spiced Chickpeas and Couscous with Grapes and Arugula
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus additional, to taste, divided
- 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 cup Israeli pearl couscous
- 3/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 can (15 ounces) no-salt-added chickpeas, drained
- 1 cup red California grapes, halved
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro or parsley
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 4 cups lightly packed baby arugula
- lemon wedges
- In large saucepan over medium heat, heat oil. Add onion, cumin, 1/2 teaspoon salt and allspice; cook, stirring, until onion is softened, about 3 minutes. Add couscous and stir 1 minute to toast lightly. Add turmeric and water; bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until couscous is tender, about 15 minutes.
- Stir chickpeas, grapes and cilantro into couscous then season with salt and pepper, to taste. Transfer couscous-grape mixture to large bowl, add arugula and toss well. Serve warm or at room temperature with lemon wedges.
Nutritional information per serving: 370 calories; 12 g protein; 61 g carbohydrates; 9 g fat (17% calories from fat); 1 g saturated fat (2% calories from saturated fat); 0 mg cholesterol; 160 mg sodium; 8 g fiber.