Continue reading “The Strongest Strains on Earth 2016”
Continue reading “The Strongest Strains on Earth 2016”
One of the most underutilized items in your kitchen: the humble ice cube tray. You can use it to freeze much more than H20—from coffee to pesto to wine. Here, nine creative ideas that will help you prevent food waste while saving time and money.
We know, we know. What’s “leftover wine”? But in the unlikely event that you have a half-empty bottle sitting on your kitchen counter, freeze the remaining vino into wine ice cubes. Pop one out next time you’re making a recipe that calls for cooking wine or need to de-glaze a pan without having to open a fresh bottle. Another idea: Throw a couple cubes into a pitcher of sangria to chill the drink without watering it down.
Cryotherapy is essentially the process of using cold temperatures for their health benefits. This form of therapy has been used in different ways since the 1700s to decrease pain and muscle spasms, improve recovery, slow cell aging and improve health.
Athletes have been soaking in cold tubs and ice baths for decades, but recent innovation now allows for whole body cryotherapy (WBC) in a specialized chamber using liquid nitrogen and is the form most often referred to in modern references to Cryotherapy.
This type of cold therapy was invented in the 1970s in Japan, and has only come to the US and other countries in the last decade. It has gained widespread popularity with athletes and those with certain chronic illnesses (as well as housewives who don’t like ice baths *ahem*).
As you might imagine, this therapy has its share of claims to its benefits, as well as its fair share of skeptics and risks. So what is the real story? I decided to get down to -240ºF and investigate.
Articles about WBC claim that it can help with everything from minor inflammation to autoimmune disease and everything in between. It is important to note that Cryotherapy itself has been used in some form by the medical community for hundreds of years and is well documented.
Sun-filled vacations, backyard barbecues and long days at the beach: summer is jam-packed with calendar-consuming social events, easily making it the best time of year. That is, until night falls and it’s time to try and get some shut-eye. Even for those who usually have no trouble sleeping through the night, summer can be a trial, due to sweltering temps and long days conspiring to keep us up well beyond our bedtimes.
If summer has turned your dreamy night’s sleep into a nightmare, you’re actually in luck. We’ve partnered with Sleep Number to find out how to beat the heat all summer long in order to catch those much-needed Zs.
By this time of year, the sun doesn’t go down until after dinnertime, stymying your attempts to stick to a regular bedtime. It’s not just your imagination ― the long hours of daylight actually trick your brain into wanting to stay up later.
“Light is a strong trigger to delay sleep,” says Dr. Carl Bazil, neurology professor at Columbia University Medical Center, “especially in areas where daylight lasts quite late.”
The farther north you go (or, in the Southern Hemisphere in its summer, the farther south), the worse it gets, until it seems like it never really gets dark at all. For morning light, blackout shades or a sleep mask should help you get the extra sleep you need. But for long, bright evenings, Bazil recommends a solution straight out of an ‘80s pop classic: to help your brain wind down, wear your sunglasses at night.
Northern Lights stands among the most famous strains of all time, a pure indica cherished for its resinous buds, fast flowering, and resilience during growth. Itself a descendant of indigenous Afghani and Thai landrace strains, Northern Lights has given rise to famous hybrids like Sour Diesel, Shiva Skunk, and Super Silver Haze. Rumor has it that Northern Lights first sprouted near Seattle, Washington, but was propagated out of Holland after 1985 at what is now Sensi Seeds.
Pungently sweet, spicy aromas radiate from the crystal-coated buds, which sometimes reveal themselves in hues of purple. Northern Lights’ psychoactive effects settle in firmly throughout the body, relaxing muscles and pacifying the mind in dreamy euphoria. Comfortable laziness allows patients to relieve pain and sleeplessness, while its mellow contentment roots out depression and stress. Several different Northern Lights phenotypes circulate the market, but Sensi Seeds recommends a general indoor flowering time of 45 to 50 days.
Of the many active ingredients in marijuana, cannabinoids — the miracle molecules that deliver most of the medical efficacy of marijuana — are not the whole picture. Some cannabis consumers may be aware of terpenes, the cannabinoid-like chemicals that give herb such a pungent aroma.
What most do not know is that terpenes also deliver therapeutic relief, just like their cannabinoid cousins.
Terpenes are produced in special secretory cells within the trichomes of the plant, the nearly microscopic resinous stalks that cover the flowers and sometimes leaves. This is also where all cannabinoids, like THC and CBD, are created. About 20,000 terpenes exist in nature; more than 200 have been identified in cannabis (compared to 111 cannabinoids).
Like amino acids, terpenes are powerful building blocks within the plant’s physiology that aid in the production of vitamins, hormones, pigments, resins, and — yes, that most cherished part of the herb — cannabinoids. Cannabis plants release more terpenes when temperatures are higher.
Beyond odor, terpenes play several roles, including protecting the cannabis plant against predators like insects and animals. These special molecules constitute roughly 10 to 20 percent of the total pre-smoked resin in the trichome. It is estimated that 10 to 30 percent of smoke resin produced by marijuana comes from terpenes.
Myrcene, one of the most common terpenes in cannabis, produces earthy, balsamic, spicy, and clove-like odors. According to a 1997 study in Switzerland, it is the most abundant terpene in cannabis, sometimes composing up to 50 percent of the terpene volume in a cannabis plant. More important, myrcene has been found to be a precursor to many other terpenes in cannabis, meaning it helps form them.
At the end of every school year, I am awed by how much my children have learned, the extent to which they have matured and the inches they have grown. The beginning of summer is a milestone worthy of pause.
On the flip side, I also mull over the things I had intended to personally teach my kids during the past year, goals that generally remain little more than a hope or dream.
Teaching them to cook is still on my bucket list. I also mean to teach them money management, meditation, how to resist technology (the toughest challenge of all!) and, once they can drive, how to change a tire. These are pretty basic ambitions, but honestly, I haven’t fully accomplished any of them.
Tackling these tasks seems impossible during the school year, when the kids have long days, piles of homework and weekend sports and therefore not a wink of free time. But a happy byproduct of summer is that we might have the time to knock one goal off my list.
So I hereby vow to conclusively teach my kids to cook. Here is my 11-step plan:
1. Start with the shopping. Successful cooking begins at the store. Teens should learn how to stock a pantry, plan meals for the week ahead, make a comprehensive and organized grocery list and stick to a monthly budget. I constantly encourage my kids to eat whole foods, but that doesn’t mean they have to shop at Whole Foods — their budget, when they’re on their own for the first time, will surely be small.
If you’ve ever found yourself wishing for another vacation before you’ve even finished unpacking your suitcase from the last one, it’s time to do something a little differently before you hit the road next time.
It sounds like extra work, having to prepare for vacation. But turns out, if we don’t take a few crucial steps, we’ll end up sabotaging our free time. Matt Richtel wrote for the New York Times last year about setting out to find a way to avoid what he calls “the seven-day trap” of a week-long getaway: “three days impatient to be relaxed already, two days actually being relaxed, and then two final days of dread before going back to work.”
He didn’t mean reminding the boss you’ll be gone, leaving detailed documentation of who is covering what and emailing around your in-case-of-emergency contact information — although those are all good ideas. Richtel’s point was that a busy brain can keep you from fully relaxing, and that it’s nearly impossible to ask your mind to just cool it at the drop of a hat. In that spirit, here are some de-stressing steps to take to help you shift seamlessly from work mode to vacation mode — and back again.
Ditch the coffee cup and grab your yoga mat instead.
In the Udaya video above, yoga instructor Caley Alyssa demonstrates a super-short sequence designed to help reenergize your body and mind. The moves are perfect if you’re slouched over a desk from nine to five. Each posture helps you stretch out your spine, release your back and open your chest.
Give the routine a try at the end of a long workday. You’ll be surprised at how invigorating it’ll be — no java required.