Reasons Why Not to Drink & Drive

Image result for do not drink and drive accident

Despite legal initiatives and public education campaigns, drunk driving remains a serious problem in the United States. In 2008, more than 1.4 million people were arrested for DUI, but that figure represents less than 1 percent of the self-reported incidents of alcohol-impaired driving, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2008, 11,773 people were killed in alcohol-related crashes, equating to one death every 45 minutes. Before getting behind the wheel after having a few, consider the many reasons why you should not.

Legal Penalties

Drunken-driving laws vary from state to state, but driving with a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or greater is illegal in all 50 states. Additionally, zero-tolerance laws make it illegal for people younger than 21 to be caught with any reading other than 0 on the breathalyzer test. In 41 states, administrative driver’s license suspension is required for people who receive a DUI, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Additionally, more than half the states require people who receive a DUI to install an ignition interlock device on their vehicles for a designated period before their licenses can be reinstated. This is in addition to the fines and court costs that will be assessed to people convicted of drinking and driving.

Alcohol impairs your motor skills, meaning you won’t be as good of a driver drunk as you are sober. For example, visual acuity is reduced by 32 percent when you are drunk, and peripheral vision is affected as well, according to the University of Texas at San Antonio. Distance and depth perception are also affected, and people who are drunk also do not hear as precisely as when they are sober.

Reaction Time and Judgment

Alcohol acts as a depressant on the central nervous system. Because of this, it can significantly impair your judgment and reaction time—a bad combination when you are behind the wheel. In fact, people who have been drinking can respond between 15 percent and 25 percent slower than when they have not been drinking, according to the University of Texas at San Antonio. This slowed reaction time is often the cause of drunken driving accidents. Judgment is also quickly affected by alcohol. Even a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.02 percent can impair a person’s judgment.

Cost

Drunken driving takes a large toll on society in general. In 2000, alcohol-related crashes in the United States cost Americans more than $114 billion dollars, according to Mothers Against Drunk Driving. That figure includes more than $51 billion in monetary losses and more than $63 billion in loses related to quality of life.

Guilt

If the above reasons are not enough to think twice before driving after having a few drinks, ask yourself if you will be able to live with the guilt if someone is injured or killed because of your reckless actions. Of the 11,773 alcohol-related traffic deaths in 2008, 216 were innocent children who were 14 or younger, according to the CDC. Every day, innocent people have their lives destroyed by people who decided they were OK to drive when in fact they were not. Keep that in mind next time you decide to get behind the wheel.

Image result for do not drink and drive quotes

Please drink responsible, Call and Uber.

Robots hit the streets — and the streets hit back

Man vs. machine has taken on a new wrinkle.

As robots begin to appear on sidewalks and streets, they’re being hazed and bullied.

Last week, a drunken man allegedly tipped over a 300-pound security robot in Mountain View, California. The incident kicked off a spree of cheeky, only-in-2017 headlines: “Armless robot loses fight to drunk man” and “Security robot beat up in parking lot, police say.”

If a robot is getting hassled in the heart of Silicon Valley, what happens when machines venture outside friendly territory?

We’ll know soon enough. The robotics era is beginning. Delivery robots are starting to appear on sidewalks in San Francisco and Washington, D.C. Self-driving cars will soon drive hundreds of Arizonians around Phoenix. Boston Dynamics, known for its viral robot videos, announced this week that it’s testing package delivery.

Related: Is Uber’s push for self-driving cars a job killer?

As robots increasingly become part of our daily lives, the makers of these machines will have to figure out how to protect them from ill-intentioned humans. Previously, robots have largely operated out of sight in factories, generally cordoned off from humans.

robot bullying

Pranksters will be tempted to pick on the robots. And workers, whose jobs may be imperiled due to machines, will have their own frustrations to let out.

Knightscope, which makes the robot that was targeted in Mountain View, said it’s had three bullying incidents since launching its first prototype robot three years ago.

knightscope robot 2

In 2014, a person attempted to tackle a Knightscope robot. Last year in Los Angeles, people attempted to spray paint a Knightscope robot. The robot sensed the paint and sounded an alarm, alerting local security and the company’s engineers.

“[The bullies] turned pale white and ran away,” Knightscope spokesman Stacy Stephens told CNNTech. The company currently has 17 clients in five states, according to Stephens. The robots operate in shopping centers, hospitals and corporate campuses.

A robot’s best defense is to rat out the bullies. Modern robots are covered in cameras and sensors, making it easy to document abuse. With the Los Angeles incident, the robot’s cameras filmed the pranksters’ license plate, making it easy to track them down.

robot bullying hitchbot

Knightscope’s robots aren’t the only ones getting picked on. In 2014, two Canadian academics sent a robot on a hitchhiking adventure as a social experiment. They wanted to see how we’d integrate a new technology into our lives.

Everything started smoothly as the robot, named Hitchbot, traversed Canada. But then Hitchbot hit the United States in 2015. And in Philadelphia, the city of brotherly love, Hitchbot learned that humans and machines definitely aren’t brothers.

The robot was found abandoned and badly mangled. Its arms were ripped off of its body.

One of the most interesting cases of robot bullying will occur once self-driving cars become mainstream. The cars are programmed to avoid accidents — they drive defensively, not aggressively.

While self-driving cars may be the perfect driver, that opens them up to abuse. Human drivers will known they can cut in front of a self-driving car without facing any repercussions. Pedestrians and cyclists can do the same.

Robots may eventually dominate our streets and sidewalks, making transportation cheaper and safer. But don’t count on every human kindly stepping aside.

CNN Credits

The Ten Best Ways To Keep Your Car From Getting Stolen

10.) Garage It

How it’ll protect your ride: Car thieves are always looking for a car out on the street. If you car isn’t on the street, it’s less likely to get stolen. For those of us who live in cities, this means renting a garage. It’s not the cheapest option, but it’s an investment in your car’s safety.

9.) Keep Your Car in Good Shape

How it’ll protect your ride: Following the broken windows theory, a well-maintained car will deter potential carjackers. If they see that you care about and take care of your car, you’re more likely to have an alarm, more likely to have a way to find it, and more likely to notice it missing.

8.) Have an Alarm Sticker/LED

How it’ll protect your ride3: Just like the “Protected by Brinks” signs in front of houses deter burglars, so do visual signs of a tougher job for a car thief. In a row of cars, the one with the blinking LED indicating an alarm is probably less likely to get stolen, regardless of whether the alarm actually exists or not.

7.) Don’t Leave Valuables in Sight

How it’ll protect your ride: Here’s a scenario: you see Car One with a box of tissues on the floor. In front of that car is Car Two in which an iPod, navigation system, and a watch are strewn about the passenger’s seat. Are you more tempted to break into Car One or Car Two? Pretty simple really — make it seem like there’s nothing in your car worth taking.

6.) Park in a Safe Area

How it’ll protect your ride: If you park your car an area with a high crime rate, and presumably a high concentration of criminals, it’s more likely to be taken than when it’s parked in a statistically safer area with good lighting and a neighborhood watch.

5.) The Club

How it’ll protect your ride: The first step in this system works like #8 — seeing a giant metal bar keeping the steering wheel from moving is a pretty good visual deterrent. And the second step is that you have a giant metal bar keeping the steering wheel from moving. There’s a reason these are pretty popular in urban areas. They are, of course, notoriously easy to defeat, but the idea is to get someone to steal someone else’s car because it’s easier.

4.) Hidden Kill Switches

How it’ll protect your ride: Usually the greatest challenge for a car thief is getting your car started without the key. To the thief’s advantage, however, is the fact that he knows he’s working with your ignition. But if he also needs to be looking for a connector hidden under the passenger’s seat, he’s that much less likely to get it started. This one doesn’t come cheap, but it may be well worth the investment someday.

3.) Lock the Doors

How it’ll protect your ride: This one seems so simple, and yet is so often ignored. A thief looking for a car to steal is more likely to go for the vehicle whose owner was kind enough to complete his first step for him, and has given him open access to everything inside.

2.) Take Your Steering Wheel With You

How it’ll protect your ride: How well do you think you can drive a car without a steering wheel? Exactly. Even if your potential carjacker can get inside and get it started, if you’ve got a quick-release hub and have taken your steering wheel with you, you should be fine. That thief is probably not going anywhere without a way to drive.

1.) Drive a Manual

How it’ll protect your ride: This one’s been documented again and again and again. Most people in America can’t drive stick, and just like in #2, if they can’t drive it they can’t take it.

Plus you get the added benefit of driving a car that’s far more engaging on a day-to-day basis. And don’t worry, it’s ethical.

Top 11 Car Detailing Secrets

taking care or your car’s appearance doesn’t qualify as vanity; instead, it’s smart vehicle ownership. You can hire a professional auto detailer to care for your car for between $100 and $500 – or you can swipe their secrets, do it yourself and save some dough. If you are going to hire a detailer, ask a lot of questions, ask for references and to see sample work, and agree to a price in writing before the detailing work begins.

With the free flow of information on the internet, do-it-yourselfers have access to all of the tools and tricks of the trade available to the pros. If you choose to detail your own ride, be prepared to spend a little bit of money gathering the proper tools and materials. You may already have most of the right stuff handy in your garage; if you must gather everything from scratch, you might spend from $30 to $100 or more, depending on how extensive you want your detail job to be.

The most important material that you’ll need is already in your tool kit. For many experts in the field, the secret ingredient is hard work and elbow grease. “Good detailing is 90% application and 10% product,” one detail professional said. “The best detailer can get decent results with decent products, but the worst detailer can’t get great results even with great products.”

There are few automotive maintenance chores that are more satisfying, accessible to all skill levels and truly beneficial for your car than a good detail job. We’ve collected the top secrets that will help you to get professional results, make your detailing more fun, more successful and easier.

Secret #1: Use Two Buckets to Wash
Detailers know that the two-bucket method is the best way to get your exterior clean. Use one bucket to hold your clean suds, and another bucket to hold clean water. Before you dip your cleaning mitt into the clean suds, rinse it off in the clean water bucket and wring it dry. Then, you’re always putting a clean mitt into the clean suds that will go on your car. If you only use one bucket, you’re just moving dirt off of your car, into your suds and back onto your car. Some pros have started using the Grit Guard insert, a $9.99 tray that helps sediment settle to the bottom of your wash bucket, instead of getting stirred up in the water and recollected on your wash mitt.

Secret #2: Join the Microfiber Revolution
We’re living the microfiber revolution. Pro detailers use color-coded, task-specific microfiber cloths and towels for greater efficiency, lower friction and scratching and easier washing, rinsing and drying. Mike Pennington, director of training and consumer relations for wax and polish supplier Meguiars, emphasizes that it’s important to wash your microfiber as a separate load, not mixed in with the regular laundry and rags. Microfiber will trap the lint from cotton towels, defeating the purpose of the wash. Use very little detergent and skip the fabric softener, which will coat the fibers and inhibit microfiber’s qualities. Double up on the rinse cycle, and your microfiber will perform at its best.

Also, remove any labels and stitching before you use your towels to avoid scratching. And remember, you get what you pay for – those cheapo packs of microfiber from the warehouse store are not nearly as good as the ones you can find at online specialty stores.

Secret #3: Detail Your Trim First
This tip comes from Jim Dvorak, a product specialist at Mothers Polish. He suggests using a trim protectant/restorer like Mothers’ Back to Black before waxing your paint. Wash and dry your vehicle, then apply the trim protectant. The product will repel polish and wax that might otherwise stain your trim. Some pro detailers use masking tape to protect the trim during waxing – this application can help save time and cleanup.

Secret #4: Use a Buffer to Apply Product, a Towel to Remove
Consumers sometimes get confused by the name of the tool, and use a power buffer to remove wax or polish from the painted surfaces of their cars. A buffer can leave erratic swirl marks in your clear coat and paint if used to remove product; that’s not what it’s for. Use the buffer to apply wax, and then use a soft, dry cloth to remove it. You’ll avoid burning the paint or damaging the clear coat, and you’ll wind up with a thin, even coat of wax.

Secret #5: Get a Dual Action Polisher
For just a little bit more than you’d spend on a good direct drive polisher and an orbital polisher, you can get the perfect blend of both tools with a dual action polisher like those manufactured by Flex. Based in Stuttgart, Germany, Flex has been making tools since 1922 and building dedicated auto finish polishers since 1988. Meguiars’ Dual Action Polisher is a little more consumer friendly, and less expensive than the Flex products. It doesn’t have the forced rotation, which keeps the tool moving even under a heavy load. Forced rotation is a great feature for an expert who knows how to use it; in inexperienced hands, however, it can do more harm than good.

Secret #6: Use a Clay Bar System
This secret may be out of the bag already, but it’s such a good one that it bears repeating. There’s no better way to remove surface contaminants from paint than with a good clay bar system. Pros have been using clay for years, and consumer versions have been on the market for at least a decade. A good clay bar system includes a spray lubricant, usually a detailing spray, an 80 – 100 gram clay bar, and a towel. According to Mike Pennington from Meguiars, after washing and drying your car you rub the clay bar on the paint to remove “bonded environmental contaminants” without removing paint thickness. The smoother paint surface takes polishing and wax better, and extends the life of subsequent treatments.

Secret #7: Use a Plastic Grocery Bag to Check the Paint Surface
Hers’s another tip from Jim Dvorak at Mothers. Once you have cleaned your paint’s surface of contaminants with a clay bar system or other cleaner, it’s important to make sure that you’ve really removed all the dirt before you seal the surface with wax. Put your hand in an ordinary thin plastic grocery bag, and run it over the surface of the paint. The plastic bag will amplify any bumps and imperfections – you can go back and detail again. Keep rechecking until the surface is totally smooth, then polish (if necessary) and apply protective wax.

Secret #8: Dry Your Glass in Two Directions
Here’s a great tip from Meguiars’ Pennington: Dry your glass in two directions. Get into the habit of doing your final wipe of interior glass in a horizontal direction, and the final wipe on the exterior in a vertical direction. Then, when you find the inevitable streak, you’ll instantly know whether it’s on the inside (horizontal) or the outside (vertical) of the glass. You’ll get perfectly clear glass without jumping in and out of the vehicle chasing that streak.

Secret #9: Brush It First
Pennington says that when it comes to cleaning interiors, mechanical agitation is always better than chemical intervention. That means that your first line of attack is a good brush. For instance, before vacuuming your carpeting, de-mat the fibers by using a stiff nylon brush. Then, when you vacuum, the dirt will be free in the carpet, and will be much easier to extract. The same goes for door panels, though you’ll want to use a gentler brush. If more aggressive cleaning is necessary, start gently, use a gentle solution of fabric cleaner, and dry with a soft cotton cloth.

Secret #10: Make Static Electricity Your Friend
To remove stubborn pet hair from your cars carpets, put on a pair of latex gloves (readily available in boxes of 100 from any home improvement store) and then rub your hand over the carpet. The static electricity caused by the latex glove will help bring the pet hair up to the surface of the carpet for easy removal by hand or vacuum.

Secret #11: Leave the Headliner Alone
According to Pennington, there’s one part of the car that detailers avoid if at all possible: the headliner. Even a little bit of agitation can cause the glue in a headliner to fail, causing far more more problems than it is worth. Keep your ministrations to a minimum when it comes to cleaning, brushing and tending to the headliner fabric. If you positively must clean your headliner, use very little moisture, and never allow it to soak through the outer fabric.

Auto detailing can be a great way to bond with your car, and to make your automotive investment go farther, last longer and look better. Hopefully these Top Secrets of the Auto Detailers will help you and your ride along the way.

Article Credits

This $30,000 robot will make you a salad

Sally doesn’t clean, chop or toss vegetables. The new salad robot making its debut in San Francisco this month is more like a salad vending machine: Press a few buttons on a touchscreen and it drops neat portions of refrigerated ingredients into a bowl.

But Sally the Salad Robot could be the latest step in automating some of the more repetitive parts of food preparation. Its creators hope food robots can help with one of Silicon Valley’s biggest restaurant problems: a shortage of kitchen workers.

Sally is the first product from Chowbotics, a Redwood City startup developing robots for the food-service industry. CEO and Founder Deepak Sekar spent two years creating Sally with help from Apple (AAPL, Tech30)Fellow Rich Page.

“I’ve always thought cooking was 20% creative work and 80% formulaic work like chopping,” said Sekar.

He also worked with ex-Google (GOOG) chef Charlie Ayers, an early Google employee who has gone on to open his own restaurant in Palo Alto, Calafia Café, and work on food startups.

Sally is a bit larger than an ATM, with a rounded window so you can peer inside at the food. You can choose a suggested salad recipe or customize your own on the touchscreen. Inside there are 21 canisters chilled to around 34 degrees and filled with items like kale, romaine lettuce, tomatoes, kalamata olives, crispy wontons and dressings.

Related: Smart robots could soon steal your job

Sekar imagines Sallys popping up in shared spaces like cafeterias, airports and schools — that is, places where a healthy meal would be a welcome change from the usual pre-packaged food. Eventually different versions of Sally could make meals like poke bowls or ramen, or find their way into busy restaurant kitchens.

At first blush, $30,000 is a lot money for a salad robot (there’s also an option to lease Sally for $500 a month). But in the Bay Area, a full-time kitchen employee like a line cook can cost $40,000 a year.

“Sally is the best employee. She doesn’t sleep, she doesn’t take vacation and she’s hardly ever sick,” said Kelly Olazar, another former Google chef who works at Chowbotics.

It’s a constant struggle to hire and retain restaurant staff, Ayers added. That’s largely due to the inflated housing prices caused by the same tech employees they’re trying to feed. Real estate is so expensive in Silicon Valley that many kitchen employees have to commute long distances for low-paying jobs.

Restaurant workers making the average $14 an hour would be unable to afford any currently listed homes in San Francisco and San Jose, according to a report from real estate site Trulia. The cities are two of the least affordable housing markets in the U.S.

Restaurant workers are not the only ones being priced out. Teachers, first responders and even doctors are struggling to afford homes in the area.

Turning to robots to try and solve labor problems is a classic Silicon Valley approach. Sally is not even the first attempt to automate restaurant work in the area: Eatsa, a quinoa restaurant, replaces waiters and hosts with iPads and a wall of cubbyholes that dispense food.

Related: iPads replace cashiers at SF’s quinoa restaurant

Sally is part of a larger trend of automation that could hit the food industry especially hard. Food preparation and service jobs are especially vulnerable because of the large amounts of predictable physical work involved, according to a recent study by the McKinsey Global Institute.

Sally still needs humans. There are numerous workers in each salad’s farm-to-robot journey. Someone has to clean and restock the device at least twice a day. People grow and prepare the ingredients, which Chowbotics buys pre-chopped. Chefs developed the salad recipes and dressings.

And Sally is not replacing any jobs at its early locations. Sally’s first customers will be diners at Calafia and tech workers at the Galvanize co-working space in San Francisco. For Galvanize’s engineers and future startup founders, the only thing a salad robot might replace is a bottle of Soylent.

article credits: here

Which Vehicles Hold Their Value Best? And Which Are Total Depreciation Disasters?

Which Vehicles Hold Their Value Best? And Which Are Total Depreciation Disasters?

What part of owning a vehicle do you suppose costs the most? Fuel? Taxes and fees? Maintenance? Actually, what costs the most is selling your car, when you take the depreciation hit. Time marches on, miles pile up, and value slips away. On average, vehicles lose almost half their original value within the first three years. The two ways of looking at this figure are depreciation and retained value, i.e., glass half-empty or glass half-full. A vehicle that depreciates 35 percent retains 65 percent of its original value.

53%:

Industry-wide average retained value after three years

Of course, not all vehicles depreciate equally. The National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) tracks trade-in values to gauge which vehicles hold their value best—and worst. The data here depicts the retained values of three-year-old models. It may be just as critical to your buying decision as zero-to-60 times.

10 BEST

Niche models may not be cash cows for the automakers, but they’re excellent opportunities for consumers, particularly if scooped up just before the model gets canceled. Toyota introduced the FJ Cruiser for the 2007 model year, and from 2008 until it was discontinued after 2014, the FJ never broke 15,000 annual sales. Now, the average three-year-old example is worth an astounding 98 percent of its original sale price.

10 Best

10 WORST

Vehicles that enjoy large sales volumes tend to reward their owners with lower depreciation rates. Unfortunately for buyers of low-volume yet mainstream small cars, especially from discontinued brands, the opposite is also true.

10 Worst

45 Tips to Live a Healthier Life

How healthy are you? Do you have a healthy diet? Do you exercise regularly? Do you drink at least 8 glasses of water a day? Do you get enough sleep every day? Do you live a healthy lifestyle?

Our body is our temple, and we need to take care of it to have a healthy life. Do you know that over 65% of Americans are either obese or overweight? That’s insane! Think of your body as your physical shell to take you through life. If you repeatedly abuse it with unhealthy food, your shell will wear out quickly. While you may look okay on the outside, on the inside, your arteries are getting clogged up with cholesterol and arterial plaque. That’s not a pretty sight!

Life is beautiful and you don’t want to bog yourself down with unnecessary health problems. Today, your vital organs (kidney, heart, lungs, gall bladder, liver, stomach, intestines, etc) may be working well, but they may not be tomorrow. Don’t take your good health today for granted. Take proper care of your body.

Good health isn’t just about healthy eating and exercise — it also includes having a positive mental health, a healthy self-image, and a healthy lifestyle. In this article, I share 45 tips to live a healthier life. Bookmark this post and save the tips, because they are going to be vital in living a healthier life. 🙂

  1. Drink more water. Most of us don’t actually drink enough water every day. Water is essential for our bodies to function — do you know over 60% of our body is made up of water? Water is needed to carry out body functions, remove waste, and carry nutrients and oxygen around our body. Since we lose water every day through urine, bowel movements, perspiration and breathing, we need to replenish our water intake.Water

    Furthermore, drinking more water aids in losing weight. A Health.com study carried out among overweight/obese people showed that water drinkers lose 4.5 more pounds than a control group. The researchers believe that it’s because drinking more water helps fill your stomach, making you less hungry and less likely to overeat. I agree with that, and I have an added take that your body tries to retain whatever water you have when you don’t take in enough water, leading to increase in weight. Whereas when you regularly drink water, your body knows that it’s going to get its supply of fluids, so it doesn’t try to retain more water.

    The amount of water we need is dependent on various factors such as humidity, your physical activity, and your weight, but generally we need 2.7-3.7 litres of water intake per day. Since food intake contributes about 20% of our fluid intake, that means we need to drink about 2.0-3.0 litres of water, or about 8-10 glasses (now you know how the 8 glasses recommendation came about!). One way to tell if you’re hydrated — your urine should be colorless or slightly yellow. If it’s not, you’re not getting enough water! Other signs include: Dry lips, dry mouth, and little urination. Go get some water first before you continue this article!

  2. Get enough sleep. When you don’t rest well, you compensate by eating more. Usually it’s junk food. Get enough rest and you don’t need to snack to stay awake. Also, lack of sleep causes premature aging, and you wouldn’t want that.
  3. Meditate. Meditation quietens your mind and calms your soul. If you don’t know how to meditate, don’t worry — learn how to meditate in 5 simple steps.Meditation at the field
  4. Exercise. Not just a few times a week, but every day. Movement is life. Research has shown that exercising daily brings tremendous benefits to our health, including increase of life span, lowering of risk of diseases, higher bone density, and weight loss. Increase activity in your life. Choose walking over transport for close distances. Climb the stairs instead of taking the lift. Join some aerobics classes. Take up a sport of your liking (see tip #5)
  5. Pick exercises you enjoy. When you enjoy the sports, you’ll naturally want to do them. Exercise isn’t about suffering and pushing yourself; it’s about being healthy and having fun at the same time. Adding variation in your exercises will keep them interesting.
  6. Work out different parts of your body. Don’t just do cardio (like jogging). Give your full body a proper work out. The easiest way is to engage in sports, since they work out different muscle groups. Popular sports include basketball, football, swimming, tennis, squash, badminton, frisbee, and more.
  7. Eat more fruits. Fruits contain a plethora of vitamins and minerals. Do you know that oranges offer more health benefits than Vitamin C pills? Taking in synthetic supplements is not the same as consuming the foods directly from nature. Satisfy your palate with these nutritious fruits: Watermelon, Apricots, Avocado (yes, avocado is technically a fruit!), Apple, Cantaloupe, Grapefruit, Kiwi, Guava, Papaya, Strawberries.Fruits
  8. Eat more vegetables. Like fruits, vegetables are important for good health. Experts suggest 5-9 servings of fruits/vegetables a day, but unfortunately most people don’t even have 5 servings! Some of my favorite vegetables include kidney beans, black beans, asparagus, long beans, french beans, sprouts, button mushrooms, and carrots. What are your favorite vegetables and how can you include more of them in your diet today?
  9. Pick bright-colored foods. Fruits and vegetables with bright colors are usually high in anti-oxidants. Anti-oxidants are good for health because they remove free radicals in our body that damage our cells. So get your fill of fruits/vegetables of different colors: White (Bananas, Mushroom), Yellow (Pineapples, Mango), Orange (Orange, Papaya), Red (Apple, Strawberries, Tomatoes, Watermelon), Green (Guava, Avocados,  Cucumber, Lettuce, Celery), Purple/Blue (Blackberries, Eggplant, Prunes). Here’s a full list under the color wheel.
  10. Cut down on processed food. Processed foods are not good because (1) most nutritional value is lost in the making of these foods and (2) the added preservatives are bad for our health.  Many processed foods contain a high amount of salt content, which leads to higher blood pressure and heart disease. Processed foods are anything that is not in its raw form. In general, most food in supermarkets are processed — the more ingredients it has on the label (especially the ones ending with ‘ite’ or ‘ate’), the more processed they are. Watch out for those with salt/sugar in the first 5 ingredients and go for natural, whole food as much as possible.
  11. Love yourself. How much do you love yourself on a scale of 1-10? Why? How can you love yourself more starting today? Read: How to Develop a Positive Body Image (series)Pink hearts
  12. Barefoot walking/running. There have been many proven positive benefits of barefoot walking/running, from better posture, less stress for your feet, less stress for your joints, etc . I’ve been running barefoot since May 2010 and loving it. Read: 10 Reasons To Run Barefoot
  13. Purge negative people from your life. Positive mental health is an important part of a healthy life. You don’t need toxic people in your life. If you feel that a friend is overly critical or negative, let him/her go. If you’re dealing with backstabbers, let them go too. Watch my video: How to Deal with Backstabbers
  14. Purge negativity from yourself. You don’t need negativity from yourself either. Listen to the thoughts that come up in your mind and get rid of the negative thoughts that you hear. A lot of eating happens because one feels unhappy, so by staying in a positive state yourself, you cut out that unhealthy dependence on food to be happy.
  15. Process unhappy thoughts. One great way to purge negativity from within is to do brain dumping exercises whenever you feel frustrated. This is something I do with my coaching clients as well, where I ask them to write out their deepest thoughts so that we can address them. Don’t keep these thoughts pent up inside you — it’s not healthy. Watch: How to Stay Positive All the Time [Video]
  16. Avoid trigger foods. Trigger foods are the foods that make you go berserk and binge like crazy after you eat them. Everyone’s trigger foods are different (mine used to be doughnuts, pastries, and chips), but generally trigger foods are candy bars, chocolate, confectionery, chips, cookies, or anything with a high level of refined sugar, salt, fat, or flour. These foods cause a blood sugar imbalance, hence triggering one to eat more. What are your trigger foods? Identify them and remove them from your diet.
  17. Breathe. Deeply. Oxygen is a vital source of life. You may know how to breathe, but are you breathing properly? Most of us don’t breathe properly — we take only shallow breaths and breathe to 1/3 of our lung capacity. Athletes are coached proper breathing techniques to get their best performance. A full breath is one where your lungs are completely filled, your abdomen expands, and there’s minimum movement in your shoulders.Woman breathing
  18. Address emotional eating issues. Emotional eating is eating to fill an emotion rather than real hunger. Do you eat when you feel stressed out, down or frustrated? Do you reach out for food when you hit a block at work? Chances are, you’re emotional eating. However, emotional eating will never make you feel happy, because you’re trying to fill a void that has nothing to do with food. Food doesn’t give you love or happiness; it’s just food. Why do you reach out for food when you’re down? How can you address it? Get to the root of the issue and address it. Read: How to Stop Emotional Eating (6-part series)
  19. Eat small meals. Choose several small meals over a few big meals a day. This balances out your energy distribution throughout the day. In general, eat when you feel hungry, and stop when you’re full (see tip #20). You don’t need to wait until official meal times before you start eating. Listen to your body and what it tells you.
  20. Stop eating when you feel full. Many of us rely on external cues to tell when we’re full, such as whether everyone has finished eating and whether your plate was empty or not. These are irrelevant: you should look at internal cues, such as whether your stomach feels full or not. Don’t feel obligated to eat just because there’s still food on the plate. Personally I like to stop when I feel about 3/4 full — if I eat till I’m totally full, I’ll feel uncomfortable as my digestive system goes into overdrive. Use your gut as your indicator (literally). 😉
  21. Go for brown carbs vs. white carbs. White carbs are refined grains like white rice, pasta, white bread, crackers, noodles, tortillas, wraps, anything with white flour and breading. The nutrients have been removed in the production process, leaving them rich in calories but low in nutrients. They also cause unhealthy spikes in our sugar levels. Go for brown carbs (unrefined complex carbs) instead, like brown rice, whole grain, oats, oatmeal (not the instant kind), and legumes. These come with nutrients and vitamins intact.Legumes
  22. Live a life with purpose. Positive health starts from within! Are you living a life of meaning? Are you living in line with your purpose? Since I started living in line with my purpose years ago, I’ve never ever been happier. And you can experience that too. Read: Discover Your Purpose in Life (series)
  23. Say no to oily food. Reduce your intake of fast food, fries, doughnuts, chips, wedges, and foods that have been deep fried. Not only are they very fattening (1 tablespoon of oil is 120 calories), deep fried food contains acrylamide, a potential cancer-causing chemical. According to a BBC report, an ordinary bag of crisps may contain up to 500 times more of the substance than the top level allowed in drinking water by the World Health Organisation (WHO)! I personally find that when I consume oily foods, I feel sluggish. There are better alternatives, such as grilled, steamed, stir-fried, or even raw food (see tip #41).
  24. Cut out sugary foods. These are your candy bars, your pastries, chocolate, cookies, cakes, and jelly donuts. Not only do they not fill you, they trigger you to eat more due to the sugar rush they cause (see tip #16). Go for healthy snacks instead (see tip #36) — you’ll be more satisfied and happier.
  25. Go organic. Organic foods are foods produced without “synthetic inputs such as pesticides and chemical fertilizers, do not contain genetically modified organisms, and are not processed using irradiation, industrial solvents, or chemical food additives.” (Wiki) The organic movement is slowly catching on, with more supermarkets, especially in the US, offering organic options. Organic food tends to cost more, but hey — would you rather save some money and feed your body with pesticides or pay a few extra dollars for a cleaner, healthier body?
  26. Improve your posture. Good posture improves your breathing (see tip #17) and makes you look more smarter and more attractive. Read more: Benefits Of a Good Posture (And 13 Tips To Get One)
  27. Cut out soda and caffeine. Drinks with caffeine are diuretics, meaning they speed up the rate of urine production. Hence, these drinks do not contribute to your 8 glasses of water/day requirement — they actually take away from it! Furthermore, soda is unhealthy, causes weight gain, and is an artificial stimulant, among other reasons. Ditch your soda and go for plain water or vegetable juices instead! Read more: 5 Reasons To Quit Soda (And How to Do It)Soda Drinks
  28. Don’t drink alcohol. Like caffeine, alcohol is a diuretic. Not only that, alcohol is repeatedly proven to have negative effects on our body and health — impacting the proper functioning of our brain, liver, lungs, and other major organs. If you drink alcohol regularly, it’s time to cut it out, or at the very least, drastically reduce your consumption.
  29. Prepare your meals. Lately I’m beginning to appreciate the value of preparing my own meals. When you prepare your meals, you control what goes into them. No more being in a dilemma between eating healthy  and choosing between sub-optimal food choices. Get some quality kitchen equipment — it will be your best investment ever. I bought my blender 3 years ago and it’s been such a breeze making my own fruit juices!Home prepared meal
  30. Learn to say no. Don’t feel like you need to eat just because you’re out with friends or because other people offer you food. Simply say no and say you’re not hungry if you don’t feel like eating. Read: How to Say No To Others
  31. Bring a water bottle when you go out. That way, you can replenish your fluids whenever you want to. It saves you money as well and you don’t need to subject yourself to poor alternatives like soda, which increases your fluid outtake instead since caffeine is a diuretic (see tip #27).
  32. Dine at salad bars more often. Lately I’m falling in love with salad bars. Salad bars work like this: you pick your greens, you select X number of toppings (usually 6 or unlimited, depending on the outlet) and you finish off with a dressing. The variety is huge, it’s filling, and it’s extremely healthy.Salad bar
  33. Go for low-calorie, low-fat alternatives. There are many low-fat / non-fat alternatives today — from yogurts, to salad dressing, soy milk, spreads, ice cream, etc. Check out this comprehensive list: Lower Calorie, Lower Fat Alternatives. Of course, keep an eye on the overall calorie and other ingredients. Some food that is packed as “low/non-fat” may actually still be unhealthy, so you want to stay clear of them as well.
  34. Stop smoking. It has been extensively proven that smoking is detrimental to health, severely increasing the risk of lung cancer, kidney cancer, esophageal cancer (of our gullet), heart attack, and more. Smoking “light” cigarettes do not decrease health risks either. Bottom line: if you’re a smoker, quit for better health of not just yourself, but also your family and friends. If you don’t smoke, stay that way and don’t start.
  35. Avoid passive smoking. Second hand smoking (breathing in air from smokers) causes many of the same long-term diseases as direct smoking (Wiki). And did you know? According to CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), there is no risk-free level of passive smoking; even brief exposure can be harmful to health. Get away from smokers and avoid cigarette smoke where you can.
  36. Have healthy snacks. If you’re hungry at work, eat healthy snacks like fruits, salads, and vegetable juices. These are nutritional and don’t give you that sugar rush. Have them readily available so that you can get a munch and stop when you’ve your fill. Stay away from cookies and candy bars.Fruits
  37. Drink fruit/veg smoothies. I love smoothies because it’s a quick way to get vitamins and nutrients. Simply throw my favorite fruits and vegetables into the blender, wait for 30 seconds, and it’s done! I recommend to use a blender for fruits, rather than a juicer, as juicing generally remove the fiber of the fruit and creates large sugar spikes in your body (which is not healthy) due to the loss of fiber.
  38. Juicing. Juicing is where you extract the juice from vegetables/fruits (via a juicing machine). Since the fiber is stripped away, you are literally drinking the nutrients and minerals directly from the juice. Juices and smoothies complement each other — the former gives our digestive system a break while the latter gives us the fiber which aids our digestion. I recommend juicing for vegetables as it’s a great way to quickly get vitamins and nutrients without having to munch through a huge volume of fiber. If you’re new to juicing, learn more about it here and check out these sample juicing recipes.
  39. Try a vegetarian diet. Just to be clear, being vegetarian doesn’t necessarily mean better health as there is a lot of unhealthy vegetarian food out there (fried food, white-carb heavy meals, desserts). That said, there are many proven health benefits of a vegetarian diet. I’m a vegetarian today as I tried it for 30 days back in 2008 and felt the positive effects for myself — mentally and physically. Try it out for 21 days and see how it works out for you. Get started here.
  40. Try a vegan diet. A vegetarian is someone who does not consume animal products. A vegan is someone who doesn’t consume animal or animal-derived products. This means no dairy, honey, cheese, or milk. So in that sense, being vegan seems like a very strict diet in our meat-heavy food culture, but it is said to give even more positive benefits than a vegetarian diet! Learn more about veganism here and here.Salad
  41. Try a raw vegan diet. A raw vegan consumes only non-processed, raw vegan food: mainly fruits, vegetables and nuts. Notice the progression from vegetarian → vegan → raw vegan diet is toward naturally occurring foods. There are many reported benefits of switching from veganism to raw veganism, including increased youth, weight loss, increased energy, and increased health benefits.Now, raw veganism is very difficult in the modern society especially as our current society is all about cooked food and, depending on where you live, very meat-heavy, highly processed, and dairy-laden food. That said, it doesn’t mean that you can’t experiment! I have gone on several 21-day raw vegan trials before and always felt very energized each time. Learn more about raw veganism here, herehere and here.
  42. Get out more often. If you have a regular 9-5 job, chances are you spend much of your time holed up in the office and not a lot of time going out and having fun. During weekends, you’re probably busy with work or running errands. Make a point to go out with your friends at least once a week. Get some sun. Go out and have a change of environment. It’ll be great for your body and your soul.
  43. Exercise good dental hygiene. Not only does good hygiene make you a lot more desirable, but it is linked with better health. Brush your teeth twice a day, rinse your mouth after each meal, and floss your teeth at night. Read: How to Attain Healthier Gums and Teeth: Path To Better Oral HygieneWoman brushing teeth
  44. Join classes. Dance classes, aerobics classes, tennis classes, ballroom dancing, scuba diving, and wakeboarding courses are all places to start. Going there also lets you socialize with a new group of people.

45. Hang out with healthy people. You’re the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with, so the more time you spend around healthy people, the better it is. Eat with people who are health conscious and get workout buddies. It makes healthy living even more fun! 🙂

Have a Good day everyone. Make sure to check us out Universal Coachworks Inc

 

3 Car Paint Types: Pros and Cons of Each

Image result for the difference between car paints

There are many different car paint types and there are many pros and cons to each type. Your needs and the look you are trying to achieve will dictate the best type of paint. Certain types are easy to apply while others may be more difficult. Some paints may be hazardous to the health and will require special equipment and ventilation. You should look into the different types of paints, how they are applied and the pros of cons of each.

  • Pros of Urethane Car Paint: Urethane paint is a good choice as it can be sprayed over almost every kind of paint as it will not react. This paint can even be sprayed over lacquer. Urethane paints are also very affordable and will dry very quickly after it is applied. Urethane paints will last for a very long time and are very durable; they do not easily fade or chip.
  • Cons of Urethane Car Paint: While this type of paint is affordable it is not the least expensive type available. While urethane paints do last along time they can sometimes have a plastic like appearance. You will need to wear proper protective gear as it is toxic. When handling urethane paint you will need to wear a painter’s suit, respirator with air pump and eye goggles. If you are using a spray gun you may find it tricky as sometimes there are flow problems.
  • Pros of Metallic Car Paint: Metallic paint offers a very cool paint effect as it will make your car noticeable and looks great on sports and muscle cars. Metallic paint makes for a very eye catching car. Many times a metallic coat of paint can increase the resale value of your car. Metallic paints are a type of premium paint and it can hide dings and scratches because it is highly reflective.
  • Cons of Metallic Car Paint: While this paint can hide scratches it can also make damage difficult to repair. This paint is hard to match if you should need to fix any spots.  You also do not have many color choices so if you are looking for a specific shade you can have difficulties. It is also a very expensive type of car paint.
  • Pros of Acrylic Car Paint: This paint is very easy to apply and will produce a very nice glossy finish. In particular acrylic enamel paints will produce hard shell when it dries and when professionals apply they will actually bake it onto car. There is a single stage acrylic paint and a double stage system that will require a top clear coat.
  • Cons of Acrylic Car Paints: While acrylic enamel paints are a type of car paint hardener, acrylic lacquer paints do not last very long and are described as “soft.” This paint will easily fade and wear when it is exposed to UV light or chemicals. They can also be very difficult to apply for those do it yourself painters and you will need to do a lot of finishing work. If you use acrylic urethane paint then once it is mixed you need to use it immediately.

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Fuel Economy in Cold Weather

Fuel Economy in Cold Weather

Person driving in snowy weather

Cold weather and winter driving conditions can reduce your fuel economy significantly.

Fuel economy tests show that, in short-trip city driving, a conventional gasoline car’s gas mileage is about 12% lower at 20°F than it would be at 77°F. It can drop as much as 22% for very short trips (3 to 4 miles).

The effect on hybrids is worse. Their fuel economy can drop about 31% to 34% under these conditions.

Why is winter fuel economy lower?

Cold weather affects your vehicle in more ways than you might expect:

  • Engine and transmission friction increases in cold temperatures due to cold engine oil and other drive-line fluids.
  • It takes longer for your engine to reach its most fuel-efficient temperature. This affects shorter trips more, since your car spends more of your trip at less-than-optimal temperatures.
  • Heated seats, window defrosters, and heater fans use additional power.
  • Warming up your vehicle before you start your trip lowers your fuel economy—idling gets 0 miles per gallon.
  • Colder air is denser, increasing aerodynamic drag on your vehicle, especially at highway speeds.
  • Tire pressure decreases in colder temperatures, increasing rolling resistance.
  • Winter grades of gasoline can have slightly less energy per gallon than summer blends.
  • Battery performance decreases in cold weather, making it harder for your alternator to keep your battery charged. This also affects the performance of the regenerative braking system on hybrids.

In severe winter weather, your mpg can drop even further.

  • Icy or snow-covered roads decrease your tires’ grip on the road, wasting energy.
  • Safe driving speeds on slick roads can be much lower than normal, further reducing fuel economy, especially at speeds below 30 to 40 mph.
  • Using four-wheel drive uses more fuel.

What can I do to improve my fuel economy in cold weather?

You may not be able to completely mitigate cold weather’s effect on your fuel economy, but you can do some simple things to help your gas mileage:

Cars parked in garage during cold weather

  • Park your car in a warmer place, such as your garage, to increase the initial temperature of your engine and cabin.
  • Combine trips when possible so that you drive less often with a cold engine.
  • Minimize idling your car to warm it up. Most manufacturers recommend driving off gently after about 30 seconds. The engine will warm up faster being driven, which will allow the heat to turn on sooner, decrease your fuel costs, and reduce emissions.
  • Don’t use seat warmers or defrosters more than necessary.
  • Check your tire pressure regularly.
  • Use the type of oil recommended by your manufacturer for cold weather driving.
  • Remove accessories that increase wind resistance, like roof racks, when not in use.
  • If you drive a plug-in hybrid or electric vehicle, preheating the cabin while plugged into the charger can extend your vehicle’s range.
  • If you drive a plug-in hybrid or electric vehicle, using the seat warmers instead of the cabin heater can save energy and extend range.

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