The National Digest

The Zero-Waste Lifestyle Feels Impossible. Low-Waste? Now…

In the United States, 30 to 40% of food goes to waste, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

“It’s crazy, the amount of waste that we generate,” said Zacharious Pappas, the co-owner of Earthbound Environmental Solutions, a local waste management company.

Many individuals around the country have opted to follow a “zero-waste lifestyle,” or a way of life dedicated to eliminating any kind of waste. But, there’s one problem: it’s incredibly difficult to be zero-waste in a world where plastic and fossil fuels dominate nearly every aspect of life.

“The name ‘zero waste’ has me concerned,” said Marnie Keilholz, the owner and designer of House Blend Lighting and Design in Chippewa Falls. “If it seems hard, people don’t do it.”

“We only have one earth. And it’s a big place, but it is finite.” – Bill Korb

Rather than changing everything about their lifestyles, sustainability advocates around the Chippewa Valley shared one piece of advice: less is more. Cutting back on waste is a step in the right direction.

“I’m practical,” said local hobby beekeeper Bill Korb. “I’m pragmatic. … Obviously I’m not advocating that we go back to the Stone Age and live the way our progenitors did. … We can have the society that we have, and we can still have nice things, and we can still continue to advance. We just have to be responsible with the way that we do that.”

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The National Digest

How I Claimed Being Thirsty as a Personal Lifestyle and Learned to Live My Dreams

This summer, I purchased a pink letterman jacket with the word THIRSTY written in all caps block letters on the back, and the squirting emoji – you know the one: three water droplets, very useful for sexting – on the front. It’s custom-made, which means I am the only person in the whole world to own this exact jacket. My best friend helped me come up with the concept. I was going to queer adult summer camp and the theme was high school; I wanted a really great signature costume piece for the occasion.

Actively stating desire is a radical act, especially for girls, especially for queers, especially for people who have been taught since birth to take up very little space, to be very quiet, to not want too much, to make sure we make ourselves desirable. From a young age society instructs us on how to make ourselves into objects of desire; locating desire inside oneself is not taught. Desire is a skill we must teach ourselves.

Once I was single, I had to grapple with the fact that in my relationship I had stopped reaching for my own desire, and then I had to learn to desire again slowly. I kept track of the things I wanted: time to write, strong boundaries, deep friendship. Bold lipstick, crop tops, bikinis. Flirtations, kisses, sex. The more I allowed myself to want, the more I realized I wanted. The more I leaned in to my desires, the clearer they became.

I didn’t have any answers, but before I went to bed I arranged my naked body in my floral print sheets so that most of my tits were showing, covered my nipples with my unicorn stuffed animal, parted my purple-lipsticked lips just so, and held up the phone so that the camera would crop the shot close. For whatever reason, posting thirst traps was making me feel good. I snapped a photo, posted it to Instagram, then fell asleep.

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The National Digest

Can lifestyle changes stop Alzheimer’s?

Last week, I hammered away on the concept that we are what we eat and the idea that by making better food choices we can inoculate ourselves against those things that might damage our health. Dr. Eva Selhub, an internationally recognized expert, physician, author, speaker and consultant in the fields of stress, resilience and mind-body medicine, recently provided another perspective. Writing in Harvard Health, she reminds us that our brain is always in the “on” setting. It works hard for us 24/7 and requires a constant supply of fuel. That “fuel” comes from the foods we eat, and what that fuel is makes all the difference. What we eat directly affects the structure and function of our brain and, ultimately, our mood.

Like that Lamborghini, your brain functions best when it gets only premium fuel. Eating high-quality foods full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants nourishes the brain and protects it from oxidative stress that can damage cells. Conversely, substances in “low-premium” fuel provided by processed or refined foods have little ability to get rid of the things that damage brain cells. Diets high in refined sugars have been shown to be harmful to the brain. In addition to worsening your body’s regulation of insulin, they also promote inflammation and oxidative stress. Multiple studies have found a correlation between a diet high in refined sugars and impaired brain function.

Diets high in refined sugars have also been associated with a worsening of symptoms of mood disorders such as depression. For many years, the medical field did not fully acknowledge the connection between food and mood. Today, the burgeoning field of nutritional psychiatry is finding there’s correlation between what you eat, how you feel and how you ultimately behave.

Selhub suggests we start paying attention to how eating different foods makes us feel — not just in the moment but the next day. She suggests trying to eat a “clean” diet for two to three weeks, eliminating all processed foods and sugar.

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The National Digest

10 Things To Consider When Buying A Pair Of Jeans

Easy to maintain and comfortable to wear, jeans can be teamed with a variety of things ranging from a top to a kurti. Over the years, the fashion garment has undergone a major makeover with many kinds available these days — from distressed jeans to classic denims.

But shopping for a new pair can get confusing as you need to take a lot of things into consideration including the style, fit, colour and of course, the latest trend. To help you make an informed decision, we have put together a list of things you must consider while buying a new pair.

Ensure you check the label for fabric details before buying. Even though synthetic is a cheaper fabric, it is better to stick with blended natural fabric as it will last longer and stay in shape despite repeated washes. Finally, check the seams on both the inside and outside of the garment. If it is sloppy, know that the jeans is loosely stitched.

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The National Digest

Clean Your Hard Floors More Efficiently with This Amazing Gadget

Dusting and cleaning hard-to-reach areas can be a frustrating task.

Thankfully, Instasweep is here (and on sale!) to change the way we tidy up our home. The triple sweep technology sweeper works in 3 different ways to clean everything from dirt, dust, pet hair and more.

The hard floor surface sweeper features twin brushes that rotate and create a cleaning vortex on the inside that lifts, grabs, and pulls the mess away– all while the inner brush send dirt directly into the storage bin. Originally retailing for $25.99, the Instasweep is now 30% off making it under $25!

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The National Digest

Dr. Fernstrom: What’s The Best Milk Alternative For YOUR Lifestyle?

Dr. Fernstrom: What’s the best milk alternative for YOUR lifestyle? In both supermarkets and coffeehouses, milk options have expanded to include a lot of plant alternatives. It’s great to have so many choices, but it can be overwhelming to pick which one, if any, is best for you.

If you choose carefully and read the labels, these milk substitutes (derived from nuts, legumes, seeds and grain) can be a solid, nutrient dense choice.

Milk is one of nature’s highest quality proteins and a naturally rich source of calcium and other vitamins and minerals; it’s also fortified with Vitamin D, a super boost for bone and tooth health. And while the fat content of milk can vary, from whole to non-fat, the nutrients remain the same. Milk is a healthy option for those who choose, except if you’re lactose intolerant or have a milk protein allergy.

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The National Digest

Healthy Lifestyle May Reduce Dementia Risk

A healthy lifestyle might reduce the risk for dementia, even in people with a high genetic risk, new research suggests.

Healthful eating and exercise might lower dementia risk in those who are genetically predisposed to developing Alzheimer’s disease.

British researchers writing in JAMA studied 196,383 people over 60 and free of dementia at the start of the study. They assigned each a “polygenic risk score,” based on their number of common genetic variants associated with dementia, and a “healthy lifestyle score,” based on smoking, physical activity, diet and alcohol consumption.

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