5 Steps To Brewing The Best Cup of Coffee You’ve Had!

There is no such thing as the singe best cup of coffee because individual preferences vary so much. This article is aimed to help you perfect your personal favorite coffee and be able to rinse and repeat the process each and every time you prepare it.

 

It is not only about how your coffee tastes, but as much about when you drink it, what is the environment and so on. When you have slept well, are amongst people you love and at a location that you really enjoy, have a good cup java from a nice cup can feel like the best cup ever. When you drink that exact same coffee some other time or at another place, it might not be that great. The key word here is good.

 

Most of us can easily spot the difference between good coffee and bad coffee. There can be a lot of different brews that are good but you can’t make the difference which is the best, and there can be a lot of coffee that is brewed with too hot water to make it bitter, used a poor filter which leaves a taste on it, or just made from a grind that is not suitable for that particular brewing method.

 

This article is not meant to be the final word on brewing coffee, but the purpose here is to get you thinking about how you are making your coffee, and how you can easily improve your “Joe”. Here are laid out some of the most important things that affect the quality of your coffee.

 

Coffee Beans

 

I find it quite interesting that most of us don’t really think that much what type of coffee we buy. We usually buy something that we are used to purchase, something that our mother of father always bought, or something that is on sale.

 

The world is revolving around coffee these days, and you can easily find all kinds of varieties of beans online, or even from your local stores. Merchants and roasteries have noticed an uptrend around coffee, and are providing us with ample varieties of beans from around the world available at different roasting levels. Every single choice you make has an effect on how that cup of coffee will eventually taste, and choosing the main ingredient correctly makes a huge difference. Though some might argue that water is the main ingredient, since the end product contains mostly just water, but we will get to water later.

 

The environment in which the coffee bean grows has a huge effect on how it will taste. How much sun is it exposed to, how is the humidity, what are the nutrients that the plant absorbs from the soil, all make a difference in the nuances and if you pay attention you can start to notice these small differences.

 

Different plantations around the same area might even produce beans that have different tastes due to the way that they grow their coffee plants. I recommend being explorative and open to new brands and different varieties, since there are so many options to choose from you most likely have not yet found your favorite. Just something that you like a lot.

 

Below you will find some of the most popular coffee varieties and a small description of each. Some of the varieties originate from selective breeding and some from simple natural selection as the plants have been accommodating to the environment in which they are growing.

 

Most of the coffee that you are able to find around the world are either Arabica or Robusta. Robusta is mostly grown around Vietnam and in the Philippines from where originates the legendary and fancy  coffee that is passed through the digestive track of a civet cat called Kopi Luwak.

 

The Colombian Arabica is one of the best known varieties of Arabica, and it is well known for the intense aromas and light acidity. Popular ready made grinds include such as Sello Rojo

 

Ethiopia is another large produces of Arabica and three varieties originate from that region. The Ethiopian Harar,  Ethiopian Sidamo and the Ethiopian Yirgacheffe. They all come from different regions of Ethiopia which is where the names derive, and are known for their complex and fruity flavors.

 

A complete and detailed list of all the kinds of Arabica known to man can actually be easily found from Wikipedia at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_coffee_varieties.

 

Once you find the types of beans you like and find a the perfect roast for your preferences, you need to store the beans correctly. Moisture and air do not do good things to your coffee beans, so you want to store them in a cool, dry and air tight place.

 

What we do here is quite simple and doable. Just get mason jars for each type of coffee you have, and store them in the fridge. That way you can have plenty of different varieties and roasts at hand, and you can be quite sure that they will keep for a long time. You want to grind them just before the use, so you’ll need a grinder too.

 

The Grind

 

Now let’s see… You have your coffee beans in order, and you have been storing them the right way. And you got yourself a good grinder? First taking the coffee beans from your mason jar, and pulling out your coffee grinder will really impress your friends if you know what I mean.

 

You don’t need to have a high tech super expensive grinder to get your coffee beans the way you like, but you need to be able to tweak the settings. The grinder has to be able to produce consistent granule size and you don’t want it to heat when you use it. Low noise is just a bonus here, but great if you have kids who are still sleeping when you are preparing your morning coffee! We actually recommend that you don’t get one with an electric motor. They are fast, but fast means heat and noise when it comes to a coffee bean grinder.

 

Basically you want a conical burr grinder, and not one of those that have spinning blades or any other way of grinding the beans. This type of grinders will produce the most consistent results and often you are able to change the coarseness of the grind in very small increments to get the right one for you.

 

If you are using a dripper, you usually want a relatively small, fine granule size. Not as fine though as you would want an espresso grind to be or for turkish coffee. For a french press you can use a bit coarser grind, but we do recommend using the finest possible to make sure that as much of the coffee is surrounded by water as possible.

 

Peugeot actually makes some of the best coffee mills  in the world, but for example the Hario hand grinder does a good job too. Both of these are of a good size for grinding a few cups at a time.

 

For espresso the game is completely different though. Trying to save money can actually bite back quite easily. At around $200 you start to get machines that can do the job quite well and also are very handy and easy to clean, but we’ll get to the grinders in another post you wait for that!

 

Water

 

After all, your coffee is mostly water. Water actually makes a big difference in how your cup of coffee tastes, since it too can have some tastes of its own. We recommend filtering your own water if you live in an area which has a water supply with a notable taste to make sure that you get a neutral tasting base for your coffee. You can of course use neutral bottled waters.

 

The taste of the water is not the only thing that affects your drinking pleasure, but the temperature makes an even bigger difference. If you are using a chemex, presso pan, high quality espresso machines, vacuum brewers,  or even an Italian mocha pot, you are able to control the temperature.

 

If the water gets too hot, the end result will be a bitter coffee as the fatty acids in the coffee bean will start to oxidise.  One excellent way to avoid this is to actually cold brew your coffee for around 10-16 hours in the fridge. Cold brew coffee will have a very different taste to other ways of brewing and you might even get hints of cola and beer from the brew.

 

The perfect temperature for your coffee when brewed with hot water is between 193 F (89,5 C) and 205 F (96 C) and never ever use boiling water. Some will argue that the closer to 205 F you will get the better, but all in all it is easy to understand why you need a reliable thermometer in hand when you are making your coffee. If you don’t want to use a thermometer or don’t have access to one when brewing, we recommend boiling water, removing it from the heat and adding 4-5% ice cold water and mixing it quickly before pouring it on the coffee.

 

This is a very handy method as not all thermometers are that reliable either, but honestly you should be able to get a reliable thermometer quite cheap off Amazon if you are serious about perfecting your cup of coffee. You will also need a really good quality scale to be able to accurately measure the water to coffee ratio correctly an reliably.

 

Brewing the coffee

 

Now let’s talk a bit about the actual brewing. Above are listed a lot of things about making good coffee in which you have very little control over. The things that you have a lot of control over are choosing the type of bean, grinding it to the perfect level of coarseness, having the right temperature water, perfect water to coffee ratio, and last but not least the brewing time.

 

Water temperature here is pretty much the only thing that is relatively constant, but the rest vary quite a lot depending on the brewing method. Typically you would use around 0.38 ounces (10.6 grams) of ground coffee to 6 ounces (or 177ml) of water. But like we have gone through above, these figures can vary on individual preferences.

 

When you are dripping coffee, you want the water to drip through the coffee grind in about 5 minutes. If you are making just a single cup of coffee, this can be quite difficult to achieve though so slightly less might be accepted. When you are using a french press you can deduct 1-3 minutes from this time. Cold brewing coffee can take easily up to 16 hours of you want to, and making a cup of espresso will actually require a very short time to brew. It takes longer to heat that 25-30ml of water to 190-192F (88-89C) than it takes to pass through the coffee in high pressure.

 

As you might realise from the brewing times. the smaller the grind the less time it usually takes. That is why you should actually try to use a grind that is as fine as possible for the method you are using and try to shorten the time, since almost all of the water soluble components are extracted rather quickly.

 

It might seem trivial, but we recommend setting a timer for your brewing. water temperature can vary a few degrees and it will not make a big difference, but brewing for a few minutes too long can make huge differences in the taste, as now different components of the coffee bean are starting to dissolve and can produce unwanted tastes.

 

Our Favorites?

 

To be honest… Those single serving french presses are probably the best things known to man. Even if you have more than one person drinking coffee at your house, you can get more than one and each of you can drink their favorite coffee. And if you want to have more than just one cup, it honestly takes 2-3 minutes of maceration and you are good to go for another cup.

 

Also a small one is very easy to clean by hand as you can rinse all the coffee crumbs and fat under hot water. Every now and then you should wash it thoroughly with dish washing liquid.

 

But basically you are done here. No matter which way of brewing coffee you choose, you need to keep an eye out for grind size, coffee bean freshness, water cleanness, water temperature, coffee-to-water-ratio and brewing time. Also choose your favorite coffee beans and have them roasted to the level you like to enjoy your coffee.

 

 

 

 

How To Choose the Best Mattress When Overweight

bedVarious factors come into play when looking for a good mattress: firmness, sleeping position, health concerns, size and shape. Experts recommend finding a bed that supports the body in a neutral position i.e. it allows proper alignment of the head, shoulders, heels, and the bum. Mattresses that are too firm mount pressure and misalign the curvature of the spine; if they aren’t too firm they cause exhaustion and aches in the body. The right mattress provides a good night sleep. It does not create unnecessary pressure on the body.

While weight isn’t a concern when choosing a good mattress, plus-size people require beds that have different functionality and design needs compared to leaner people. During the last few decades, mattress manufacturers barely made provision for heavier people. However, with more people reporting lower back aches, obesity, and other chronic illnesses, different types of mattresses have been made to accommodate them. Heavy-weight people are particularly compelled to look for beds that adjust to their weight and allow comfortable sleep:

Several mattress reviewers recommend:

  • ·10-14 inch mattresses for plus-size people weighing between 200-250 pounds for overall satisfaction.
  • 12-14 inch mattresses for plus-size people weighing 250-300 pounds.
  • 14-inch mattress for those 300-450 lbs.

Here is a list of the best mattress types for fat people:

1. Latex Mattresses

Latex mattresses are known for their durability, buoyancy, firmness and uniform support throughout the bed. They are made from natural or synthetic rubber. High- quality latex mattresses provide ample support, hold up longer than polyurethane foams and allow moderate contouring.

Heavier folks should look for 9″ thick latex mattresses (all-latex) with no springs or other foams. All its layers should be made of latex material and should be detached for easy replacement when the wear out. Local dealers don’t always stock all-latex mattresses thus the need to buy from online retailers.

2. Innerspring mattresses

Innerspring mattresses remain a consumer’s favorite to date mainly due to their bouncy nature. The spring core (body of the interior) comprises hundreds of steel springs or built-in coils that are individually enclosed to prevent wearing out or popping out of the mattress.

For extra comfort, users should pair the mattress with a topper that features a wide variety of materials ranging from pillows to memory foam depending on the individual’s preference. Buyers should however rid of the idea that the more the coils, the more the comfort; experts advise innerspring mattresses with a coil count above 90.

Plus-size people looking to buy this type of bed should look for innerspring mattresses with two inches of firm blended, medium or high-density memory foam; it allows easy to getting in and out. Innerspring mattresses that don’t have fluffy pillow are more durable. This kind of bed is also ideal for people with back pain.

3. Memory foam mattresses

Also known as memory mattresses, they have recently grown in popularity due to their ability to adjust to different weights. Memory foam mattresses come with toppers that are temperature-sensitive thus individuals may find them cold and hard when lying down.

As the mattress reacts to the body temperature, it gets warm. Additionally, the contour fits the individual’s body shape adding extra comfort. Though pricier than spring mattresses, they are ideal for plus size people and folks suffering from pain in the joints and relieving pressure.

Pros

· Memory foam mattresses mold to the shape of the body as the weight shifts throughout the night.

· It reduces pressure points thus relieving body aches.

· It absorbs movement; if sleeping with a partner, you aren’t likely to get disturbed.

· The mattress, however, is not ideal for people suffering from chronic fatigue or muscle pains.

4. Hybrid mattresses

They feature the latest products in sleep technology and are the best mattress types for fat people. Hybrid mattresses provide 50/50 ratio of comfort by combining enclosed innerspring and layers of memory, latex or visco-elastic foams. They have plenty of features found in innerspring mattresses: a better flow of air from the coils, improved compression and edge support. Thus hybrid mattresses minimize the cons found in foam and coil mattresses while focusing on their benefits.

Since hybrid mattresses provide more support than the typical memory foam mattresses, beds using hybrid mattresses make sleeping, reading or watching television a more relaxed experience. They are a good fit for overweight people looking for a more holistic mattress experience compared to the regular single latex, memory foam or gel options. The unique features about hybrid mattresses include:

  • Enclosed coil technology: that minimizes movement caused by tossing and turning thus providing restful sleep.
  • Luxurious fabric cover: that protects the mattress and provides a more comfortable surface for sleeping.
  • Infused layers of memory foams: allows the body to adopt a comfortable sleeping posture.
  • Gel-infused memory foam: it minimizes the mattress’ heat retention caused by the body and diffuses it away.

· Edge support adds to the sleeping surface of the mattress.

5. Air mattresses


This is what most of us think when we hear air mattressess.... But it's not what we are talking about here.These are not blow-up mattresses. Air mattresses are higher-end air beds that resemble conventional standard innerspring mattresses but utilize air-filled chambers instead of coils. Air mattresses are ideal for plus-sized people as well as patients with spinal cord injuries who remain in bed for extended periods to avoid skin breakdown. Couples that have differences in individual preferences for comfort and firmness should also use air mattresses. Like memory foam mattresses, users may add air toppers for extra comfort.

While the best mattresses depends on an individual’s preference the mattress should:

  • Provide enough level of depression support.
  • Allow 4-7 on the firmness scale.
  • Provide adequate support to the head, neck, spine, and hips.
  • Provide comfortable rest.

When to change your mattress

Mattresses are designed to last a lifetime. However, over time the body changes so that the mattress that was once comfortable wears you down several years down the line. Additionally, mattresses collect mites, dust, fungus and germs that can cause allergies and disrupt your sleep patterns. Experts recommend changing a mattress every 0-5 years after buying a new bed. Note that the best mattress is the one that allows the body to get enough rest regardless of the kind of mattress you’re lying on.

What’s the Best Mattress for Heavy People?

Seems comfort trumps durability in the mattress world, so the best mattress for heavy people is one that is rock hard and not comfortable, or is it? Most normal mattresses are not designed to withstand the extra weight, which greatly shortens their lifespan when used by someone carrying a little bit of extra with them.

For years the only type of bed that could hold up to a huge person was a spring mattress that had other firm coils and extra firm padding making it unbearable to sleep on. However, the best mattress for fat people is not made of steel springs nor memory foam, but rather a product of Mother Nature herself, rubber.

Latex mattresses are a very traditional model, also molding well to your bodies contours, but they do this through the open cell structure of this natural material. Latex is a tree sap from a rubber tree so is natural as well as efficient. A latex mattress usually consists of a density of 4 pounds or so and is not too firm or too soft. They are very popular amongst back pain sufferers. Latex foam rubber is made from tree sap (milk) from the rubber trees found mostly in Malaysia, Sri Lanka and India. Latex mattresses have been around for decades, and their durability is legendary. I have personally seen these beds exceed 50 years of use. What makes them the best mattress for heavy people is the density of this fantastic product. For example, most quality sofa cushions are made using 1.8 lb polyfoam. As you know, these pillows usually last between 5 and ten years before starting to collapse. Just imagine how long a foam that was two times heavier would perform in the long haul and you have the reason why latex is so durable.

Ok, so now it’s no secret why latex can outlast any other product but what about the comfort? Does the best mattress for overweight people need to be rock hard like a spring mattress? No, latex mattresses offer BOTH comfort and durability coming in a variety of firmness levels. Some manufacturers even offer different firmness levels for each half of the bed, so if a dark person is partnered with a much lighter person, each can have their choice. Try getting that from a spring or memory foam bed.

What types of latex matresses are there available?

This is a question I get asked often. Since there are two types of processes for latex, Dunlop, and Talalay, each has its unique properties. Dunlop latex is denser and makes it the most popular choice for back sleepers who are heavy. Talalay latex is less dense and airier making it a better choice for lighter folks and those who like to sleep on their side. Talalay does come in firmer densities as well and can be tailored for a heavy person who also likes to sleep on their side. The Talalay process with being the best option if getting a mattress with different firmnesses fits your needs.

The Talalay process was invented in 1956 and carries the last name of one of its inventors. Additional steps were added to the standard Dunlop process which allowed an infusion of air into the latex batter. The air infusion ultimately results in the Talalay latex having a livelier feel than Dunlop. This plusher more enveloping feel has helped Talalay become more and more familiar. Back sleepers are generally able to sleep comfortably on about any firmness because they’re on their back. But those who are side sleepers or stomach sleepers have greater difficulty getting the right support in the right spots and Talalay latex is the white knight to the rescue for these sleepers.

Talalay latex mattresses can be designed to own comfort with firmer latex layers on the bottom and a softer latex layer on the top. Talalay latex comes in sheets that are 2.8″ thick. The latex is made in different firmnesses soft, medium, firm and extra-firm so the perfect layered mattress can be put together that will give both the firm support beneath and a softer body-contouring layer on the top.

Talalay is available in either a blend where man-made latex is added to natural latex (the natural latex will be 30 to 40 percent) or it’s available as all natural organic 100% latex. It provides up to 33% more pressure relief than conventional foam and fiber cushioning materials. It’s also the most breathable sleep product by far.

What’s the best mattress for a side sleeper who is big?

This is a loaded question because everyone is different. Again, getting back to the mainstream, most customers who are between 180 and 230 lbs choose a latex mattress with an ILD rating in the mid 30’s coupled with a latex mattress topper in the low 20’s. This selection will not only provide support for a slightly heavier person but also provide pressure relief in the shoulders and hips mostly due to the softer topper.

For those searching for the best mattress for side sleepers who are much fatter you will have no choice but to go with one in the upper 30’s ILD range but again, get the added soft latex mattress topper to help with the shoulder and hip circulation issues you are probably having right now. All the choices I have recommended are based on over 14 years experience selling latex mattresses online and are in fact what customers have reported back works best for them based on weight classification. It is important to put yourself in the hands of a “real” sleep expert when shelling out the dough for one of these premium latex mattresses. One thing you want to be sure of is the trial period for the mattress. Although the above recommendations work best for most people, it still comes down to personal choice, and you want to be sure you can return or at least exchange the mattress if it’s not working out for you.

Comfort for the person with extra weight

If you are that person say 250 pounds, it is important to know that you can still enjoy the benefits of latex. The underneath layers should be in the extra firm and firm with a medium Talalay latex on top. As the weight increases, the layer firmness would have to increase. Also, a mixture of the two types of latex is very standard. Dunlop layers are used for the bottom two layers and a Talalay layer is used on top. The fourth layer of latex can also be added for a higher profile mattress and additional support as well.

Number one purchasing tip!

More and more people are discovering the comfort of latex as witnessed by the increasing number of retailers. It’s always best to look for the most information and increase your knowledge before you buy so you’ll know which type of latex mattress is best for you. You’ll find your best product and best prices from your manufacturers who have a long history with latex mattresses.

Did I say it never needs turning? You just can’t beat that benefit!

We think you could find these other posts regarding the subject interesting:

What You Need to Know Before You Buy Mattresses
Finding the Best Futon Mattress Frame
Best Futons For Fat People

Shoud You Use Weekly Meal Plans For Weight Loss

If you don’t know where to start, you need someone qualified to prepare weekly meal plans for you for weight loss. Spending countless of hours doing the research yourself isn’t worth it, when you can learn as you go.

  • Learn healthy meals as you make them
  • Have a professionally designed individualized meal plan!
  • Lose weight eating tasty, healthy foods
  • Maintain your final weight forever!

There is always a few things in common with diets that work. They all seem to take in to account individual differences, and they all are versatile. The most common mistake that people do, is stick with the same foods over and over again. They eventually start developing food sensitivities, which will make them feel bad after eating, and in the end they discontinue their project.

Another common reason for failing, is taste fatigue. When you notice that it is easier to just eat the same food over and over again and not plan new meals, it’s easy to develop taste fatigue. This means that your body will start to physically resent the taste of the food, and you will feel nausea because of this. (Ever heard of someone going on a cabbage soup diet, and never be able to eat cabbage after tbat? 🙂 )

The reason why this happens is that since the meals have to be planned in order to get the right amount of calories and nutrients, people don’t have the time to plan a lot of meals. If you are eating four times a day, and you want to keep it versatile, you will have to plan dozens and dozens of meals, week after week to make sure that they comply with the principles you are using for your diet.

This is where weekly meal plans for weight loss come in to play. But the thing is that you don’t want to get just any weekly meal plan that you can get, you need to make sure that the person who designed it, knows what they are doing. Also there has to be individualization since not all diets work for everyone – some people do better with low carb meal plans, some do better when they have some extra carbs planned in their diet.

When you have a weekly meal plan for weight loss, you have a clear plan on what you are going to do to achieve your results. Since you have every meal planned already for you, you won’t make mistakes and eat unhealthy foods by accident. You won’t have to worry about not knowing what to eat.

The Benefits Of Weekly Meal Plans

When you have everything planned out for you, it is much easier to use fresh ingredients and make healthy choices. Food preservatives and chemical additives are a big concern in the food that we are eating today, and food delivery services don’t always take this in to account.

When you are eating fresh vegetables, preferrably organic, your body isn’t going to be as taxed trying to remove the chemicals from your system, and it can focus on burning fat for energy. A good meal plan will help your system lose weight and give you more energy while you are following it.

Have you ever been on a diet? If you have, you know for a fact that there are days that you just can’t think of anything healthy to eat. You might be in and out of the office, and be forced to eat out, or think of something to grab while you are on the go.

It can be really difficult to come up with something that really fits your diet, and having a weekly meal plan will make it easier. If you have prepared your foods in advance, you will not have this problem, and if you haven’t you can use the plan as a guideline when you place your order at the restaurant. Just make sure that they aren’t adding anything extra, and you are making a safe choice.

In the end, when a highly trained, and experienced professional is doing the planning for you, you will learn how it is done, when you are losing weight. You won’t have to waste time studying, until you can start planning those healthy meals!

Honest Review of The Dukan Diet

Deciding which diet you are going to follow, can be quite difficult these days as there are so many of them readily available. Not many of us have the experience needed to be able to combine the best diets for one that best fits us.

The Dukan Diet was originally developed by a French doctor Pierre Dukan, who was not satisfied with the health of the average person. Almost any health problem can be linked to obesity and unhealthy eating habits, and that is why it was important for Pierre Dukan to create a diet which was easy to follow, and produced results really fast.

It has been spread in to four different phases, which are in fact a great way to keep the dieter motivated as they are constantly looking for the next phase, and doing the work so that they can get to the next level. The fourth phase is a maintenance phase which is designed to help people keep their weight at the ideal.

What we did find was the best thing about he Dukan Diet is that you are not going to count calories, and you will not have to measure your food. You have easily over 100 different foods that you can eat to avoid boredom and taste fatigue, and food sensitivities.

What Is The Dukan Diet?

Consisting of mainly different meats and vegetables, it will give you a lot of protein which will maintain even blood sugar levels, and fight cravings for sugary foods. Because there are a lot of vegetables, you will get a good source of fibrous carbohydrates, and you can’t accidentally overeat on them – not many people can eat 20 grams of carbs from vegetables in one meal.

Depending on the phase you are in, you have a different variety of foods available, and this is what gives you motivation for it. You know that once you reach a certain point, you can start adding different foods, and it doesn’t seem like an endless project.

Phase 1 of the Dukan Diet (Attack!) is simple – eat only meat! This phase is designed to give you a good head start for weight loss. The reason why it works is a bit complicated for most, but let’s make it simple. First of all, most of the people who are trying to lose weight, are falsely avoiding meat. When you avoid meat you easily start using allergen containing protein sources such as dairy.

Many people are obese because of food sensitivities that keep their cortisol levels high on a regular basis – doesn’t matter how healthy you eat, if you are sensitive to the foods that you are consuming. A meat only diet will help your body to rest from the allergens, and it will also give your system amino acids which are needed for detoxification.

A very high protein diet is going to boost your detoxification. Because you are using mainly meat in your diet now, your body will start getting rid of different chemicals which come from various sources, and the extra protein intake is going to help with this.

Since meat is very low with the glycemic load, you will also improve your insulin sensitivity. Since your blood glucose levels will not rise very high, you will not feel the crash that follows – you will not be hungry and feel faint! Since you don’t have the spikes in your blood glucose, your body will learn how to use fat as energy more efficiently, and it will also have time to repair the damage that elevated blood glucose can cause.

This is indeed the most important phase of the Dukan Diet for success. You need to get your body adapted to using fat as energy, and not control your energy levels with sugary foods.

The phase 2 of the Dukan Diet (Cruise) is what you will be doing as long as you need to lose weight. If you have a lot of weight to lose, then this is the phase at which you will be the longest, and it is what you will get used to. After a while you might notice you are hoping to get to phase 3 already, but if you stay in phase 2 for a long time, you will be able to get rid of all cravings for good.

Many people who have followed a meat + vegetables diet only for extended periods of time, have reported to lose all their cravings for carbohydrates and unhealthy sugary foods. Your body will thank you for eating a diet like this, and reward you with zero cravings!

The biggest reason we think is that your body gets so used to managing the blood glucose and energy levels by using adipose tissue as energy, it forgets everything about sugar. Your brain is what usually craves the sugary foods for a quick fix of glucose, but after a while it learns how to manufacture it’s own energy!

The pounds will literally melt off, as you are alternating between protein only, and protein and vegetables one day after another. Pierre Dukan advices that you stay three days in the phase 2 per each pound that you think you need to lose. So for someone who needs to lose 10 pounds, using the phase 2 for a month should be enough.

Someone who has to be in the phase 2 for a longer period of time, will notice how easy it is to follow, and how good it makes you feel – it might be difficult to get away from it! This is actually one of the reasons that we think it works for a long term solution; people using it will make “Phase 2:ish” choices even when they are in their goal weight.

The phase 3 of the Dukan Diet (Consolidation) is where you have to be really careful! This phase is in turn when your diet has taken you to the weight where you want to be in. It’s time to start shifting your mindset from weight loss to maintenance, but it has to be done slowly to avoid the Yo-Yo effect!

Carbs can be very addictive, and if you don’t monitor your intake at all in the beginning, you might go over the board, destroy your new found insulin sensitivity, and gain back the weight in record time.

You are going to add foods to your diet one by one, and eat two meals each week of whatever you feel like. Keep in mind that these are meals, and once you are done, you can’t go for seconds in an hour! It’s no longer the same meal!

Just like the Phase 2, Phase 3 has a timeline. Every pound you lost so far, multiplied by 5, is the number of days you have to stay in the Consolidation phase. This will make sure that you don’t bounce back to your old habits. It is recommended that you keep eating mainly similar foods as you did in the previous phase, and add the other foods slowly to your diet.

Finally the phase 4 of the Dukan Diet (Stabilization) has arrived, and after spending 60 days in Phase 2 to lose 20 pounds, and 100 days in Phase 3 to make sure that you are able to maintain the weight lost, you can get back to “normal life”. This doesn’t meant that you should order a pizza for breakfast – you want to keep the weight there!

There are three rules for the rest of your life!

  1. Every Thursday, get back to phase 1 and eat protein only. This will help you maintain the insulin sensitivity, and it will help your body repair itself. Why Thursday, and not any other day of the week? Well most of us, tend to lose it during the weekend, and eat unhealthy foods and even drink some alcohol. Social events that require you to eat unhealthy are usually held during the weekend, and when you deplete your glycogen on Thursday, most of the excess energy you consume, will be stored inside your muscles, instead in the fat!
  2. Eat oat bran daily. Simple. You need the fiber to keep your satiety.
  3. Exercise when possible. This doesn’t mean you will have to hit the gym, but instead walk when you can drive, run when you can walk, and use the stairs where available!

Overall the Dukan Diet is one of the most sain diets that work out there today, and you can find many Dukan Diet reviews which will agree on this!

Is The Tiny Love Gymini Super Deluxe Play Gym Suitable For Small Children?


If you haven’t already got a play gym for your child then this is the one that you have to get. Actually it is so good that most of the customers at Amazon would recommend you getting it even if you already have something else. The Tiny Love Gymini Super Deluxe play gym is the best thing that you can get for your child this Christmas!

If you are expecting a baby or you already have a kid you must know how much small children enjoy a wide selection of different colors and patterns to look at and to play with. The best part with this play gym is that it is a complete package taking all your kids attention.

It has a specially designed mat that comes with a few surprises of its own. You can find ears that crinkle and a squeaker that is hidden somewhere for your kid to find and enjoy the surprise that he or she gets from applying pressure on it.

Children love other children, and another very exciting thing is their own mirror image. The mirror is slightly skewed because of the durable construction, but this only makes that playtime more fun for your child.

Some parents are afraid of the price of this play gym, but honestly you can find the best price for the Tiny Love Gymini Super Deluxe Play Gym for Christmas 2010 here, and you have never spent money better on your childrens toys.

Being a high quality product you can be sure that it will last for a long time, but also it can handle you washing it. Many parents like to wash their kids toys quite often to be sure that they are free from germs. You can put all the fabrics in the washing machine and even dry them in the machine. The toys that are attached can be easily wiped with a damp cloth and they toy is just like when you first bought it.

This is honestly the one of the best baby development toys that you can find, and getting it for your child this Christmas is going to be the best baby purchase that you ever made.

Is The Step 2 WaterWheel Activity Play Table Worth The Price?


Do your children like to play with water? It doesn’t have to be limited to the garden in the summer, but you can actually allow them to have all the fun they want to have – year round. The Step 2 WaterWheel Activity Play Table has been said to be the best activity table and the best water related toy there is for kids of all ages, and this is entirely true.

Most people think that activity tables are only for children that are of a certain age, but this toy makes all this go away. It is short enough for one year old children to use it, and it is definitely interesting and exciting enough for even five year olds to play with.

The best part is that it is not something that your children will get bored of and stop playing with it, but it has a really long lifespan in any family.

If you are still thinking which toys you should get your children for Christmas, then buy Step 2 WaterWheel Activity Play Table for them and they will not be disappointed, and neither will you.

Something that Step 2 is well known of is their quality, and this toy makes no difference in that. You aren’t going to get a shaky table but a steady play table that will keep your kid active for as long as they can go on.

Many kids that have a short attention span and like to play with one toy for only a short time have been using this one for months in a row without ever getting bored to it. It is just that addictive – it keeps your kids active and this is something that they like. Also when they are mentally active during the day they will sleep better and be a lot more calmer when you want them to be,

One of the things that you are will like is when you get Step 2 WaterWheel Activity Play Table for this Christmas, you are going to be certain that you will get an easy to asseble item. It is not going to take more than 4 minutes for your kid to open the package from under the Christmas tree, and you to have assembled the toy. It can be easily disassembled if you need to hide it, but it us also compact and can be stored whole.

Since this isn’t one of those combo tables that comes with sand and water, you dont’ have to worry about your kid eating the sand, or messing around with it. Mixing sand and water can turn in to quite a mess that you will have to clean up later.

What’s Special About The Mattel Mindflex Game

If you have kids then you know that finding the best Christmas gifts for 2010 can be very difficult. Seriously you can spend hours and hours going from store to store without finding something new and different. Sure there are hundreds of dolls for girls and cars for boys, but something new is nowhere to be found. Nobody wants puzzles or GI Joe’s anymore. A lot of parents are buying video games for children, but do you really want your kids spending all of their time in front of television set rotting their brains while playing mindless game that need no brain function.

The Mattel toy company has come up with an all new type of game for children. It is a game that is first of it’s kind and it is quite revolutionary. It is called the Mattel Mindflex Game and believe it or not, you play it with your mind. You use your brainwaves to control the game. You wear a wireless headseat that uses EEG technology to monitor your brain activity which controls a fan. When you concentrate the game will make a ball rise on a cushion of air. When you relax the ball descends. The more you concentrate the higher the ball will rise. You will use this to navigate through different obstacle courses. With nine customizable obstacles there are hundreds of different combinations to play through.

The game is easy to pickup, but it takes some time to master. It is not for the smallest of children, but for kids from 8 years up. It is very fun for adults as well. With each set you will get a game console, one headset, four balls, three ring towers, five rings, two maze cages, two wall panels, four shelf panels, one funnel, one cannon, one teeter-totter and a propeller wheel. So you can create all types of courses.  The best thing about this game is that it can improve concentration. If you have hyperactive kids then this the game for you.

Leap Frog Leapster2 Learning Game System

Kids love to play with games that make them think and learn while they are having fun. One of the best gifts that you can get your child this christmas is the Leap Frog Leapster 2 Learning Games system. Most parents don’t like their children to play on video games because they never learn anything from them, but when you get this learning game system for your kid, you are going to be sure that they will learn while they are having the time of their life.

Something that we as parents are usually worried about is spending too much money on the toys that we get for our kids. Since most games and toys that you can get, do not offer a really long period of use, but the children get bored of them quite quickly, you don’t want to spend hundreds of dollars for a normal portable gaming console.

This game system has over 40 educational games that your child can play without getting bored of them. You can take this with you for long drives to the relatives and other road trips, and you are guaranteed that your kids will be quiet in the back seat playing and learning at the same time.

It comes with a sophisticated learning path system, which allows the parent to follow the development of their child , so you can be absolutely certain that your kid is learning while they are playing.  Another really good part about it is that it is built for children and built to last. If you would get a regular portable console like the Nintendo DS you would end up paying a lot more, and you would risk it breaking if it is dropped from your kids hands.

If you want to make your kid happy this Christmas and you want that joy last for a long time, then we suggest that you get the Leap Frog Leapster2 Learning Game System this Christmas. It comes in two colors – green and pink!

LeapFrog My First LeapPad

LeapFrog is well known for producing highly educational and fun toys for kids of a wide age group. The LeapFrog My First LeapPad doesn’t make a difference in this but is able to provide your kid from 16 months to 3 or even 4 years a lot of fun and intelligent activity that will educate them.

This LeapPad is a little bit different from the regular models, as being “My First” it comes with a design that is more suitable for younger children. The pages of the book is a heavier board when in the regular model a really high quality thick paper is used. This makes sure that as your kid is just learning how to control his body, the toy will last longer than just this christmas.

Actually parents who have bought this toy for their children have been quite surprised with the build quality and the durability of this toy, and this is amongst the reasons why we suggest that you buy LeapFrog My First LeapPad for Christmas, so that you kids can enjoy a happy new year learning and having fun.

This is quite a simple toy, although it provide just what the kids want – something challenging but educational at the same time. Most of all it’s fun! It comes with a platform that holds the toy together. Also there is a magic pen and a book that your child uses to play with this toy. Once the on/off button is pushed you are ready for a ride in the fantastic world of all the games that can be played with the pen. Some of them include learning the parts of the human body, understanding different shapes and colors but also skills that you need to learn before further education for reading and writing can be learned.

It prepares your child for life, and helps him or her to further learn new things and enjoy life!