Monthly Archives: March 2016

Wine Tasting Tours

barnWhen selecting vineyards to visit on a tour, it is first important to consider the nature of the visit. While a wine enthusiast may be going on a tour strictly for the tasting, to forget about the other opportunities that exist is to miss out on most of the enjoyment that such a tour can afford.

Whether you are planning a tour in the Napa Valley or in the rich vineyards of Virginia, there are many interesting sights to see along with a tasting tour. The vintage farmhouses and rustic implements that have been used in over a century of wine-making have as much a history and color as the grapes and wines themselves.

One of the best recommendations is to find a local tour guide, who specializes in tours of the vineyards. A good guide is well worth the extra money spent, as only a local guide will really be able to unlock the vault of local history and bring the region and the wineries to life. And a guide who has a good knowledge of wine making can also be of great assistance in helping make choices of good bottles to purchase from local vineyards.

Consider planning out your day or days on your tour to include opportunities to enjoy some of the desirable amenities, such as picnic grounds for a relaxing lunch. If you plan a tour well, you can also coordinate to enjoy music or entertainment that is often featured at the larger wineries. Special evening events and jazz nights are common and can be missed if advance planning is not done.

3 Reasons to Buy Fair Trade Coffee

The term ‘Fair Trade’ has been a familiar one for quite some time now. We have shelves full of Fair Trade coffee, bananas, and chocolate on our supermarket shelves. We buy Fair Trade lotions and creams from ethical beauty stores. Yet, how much do you know about what Fair Trade stands for, particularly when it comes to highly valued produce like coffee?

What Does the Fair Trade Logo Represent?

Fair Trade Coffee stampThe Fair Trade logo is something which many of us see almost every day, certainly every time that we go food shopping. There might even be some Fair Trade coffee in your kitchen cupboard right now. The practical significance of the logo and what it represents, however, can be easily lost in the changing trends and fads of the day.

For example, there was a time when it was considered ‘cool’ to be Fair Trade and a lot of people jumped on the bandwagon because scores of high profile celebrities and Hollywood stars were revealed to be big fans of organic produce. While any interest in ethically grown produce is a great thing, it is important to take some time to think about what you are buying and why.

The term Fair Trade is used to refer to a method of purchasing and selling goods and commodities (usually produce) whereby the local growers, producers, and suppliers are fairly compensated for the labor which they contribute. It can also be used to describe policies which make preservation of the natural environment a top priority.

At present, around 85% of all Fair Trade coffee beans are grown organically. This does make them slightly more expensive than budget coffee brands, but the thing to remember is that the extra expense goes to rainforest conservation projects, fair wages for local growers, and the construction of schools and clinics in poor regions. The following three reasons should be more than enough to convince you to swap your budget coffee for a superbly silky and full bodied Fair Trade blend.

It Supports the Preservation of Natural Landscapes

If you buy Fair Trade coffee blends, or any brand of organically grown coffee, you are contributing to healthier and less damaging methods of farming and agricultural production. While it can be difficult to see and to feel the benefits of spending that little bit more on organic produce, the reality is that even economically friendly farming practices halfway across the world can end up having a positive impact on climates which are thousands of miles away.

On Fair Trade affiliated farms and grow spots, suppliers work hard to dramatically reduce and eventually eradicate the use of harmful toxic agrochemicals, pesticides, fertilizers, and other detrimental chemicals. Plus, the vast majority of Fair Trade coffee companies work closely with growers and farmers to make sure that production methods are completely sustainable, so that the produce will continue to be a part of the landscape for many years to come.

It Guarantees Farmers a Fair Wage

The ethical and responsible consumer is one who actively supports the exchange of a fair product for a fair wage. Now, just think about the quality of the coffee beans which are produced in amazing environments like Peru, Indonesia, and South America. There is a very good reason these landscapes create superb produce and, as consumers, it is important to recognize and honor that.

It is not widely known that Fair Trade coffee is actually subject to a base commercial price, so that consumers can never be ripped off. This is part of the Fair Trade contract after all – it is not just about helping out unknown farmers for nothing in return, because you get to enjoy extremely high quality coffee blends at prices which stay affordable too.

It Tastes Better and It Is Much Healthier

You might be surprised to find that Fair Trade coffee is better for your health, as well as tasting much finer and richer. As international demand for coffee beans grows more and more every single year, the techniques used to produce it get more and more unscrupulous. The bottom line is that organic Fair Trade coffee is grown without chemicals, nurtured at a natural pace, and allowed to retain all of its minerals and nutrients.

Plus, organically grown coffee beans are processed and pressed without the use of additives or chemicals as well. In essence, because the farmers have been kind to the soil, the soil is able to offer up more of the good stuff – vitamins, nutrients, minerals, and a whole bunch of stuff which it feeds back into the plants and uses to make them grow up tall and strong.

If You’ve Been Obese for Decades Medical Weight Loss Is Still an Option

For millions of people being overweight is a lifelong problem that means constant dieting, early diabetes, and plenty of ridicule. Many have been on every diet they could find since childhood and nothing has worked for them, so they’re finally either giving up or going in for a real medical weight loss procedure. By the time they finally do, it may be a life or death struggle to survive.

Are Most Of The Weight Loss Systems On TV Scams?

Measuring tape and bottle with pills. supplements of dietAs many people already know, the weight loss programs and diets that show up on daytime talk shows are garbage. They show a few people that have lost weight, give a few helpful hints, then try to sell a book that will turn your life around. The problem is, none of them work the way they should, and they’ll be selling a different book tomorrow.

Selling weight loss supplements, books, and diet food is a multi-billion dollar industry in the Western World. Using TV shows and celebrities to pump people up and get them to buy is as old as the snake oil salesmen of the past. But there are real options available for medical weight loss.

When All Else Has Failed Seeing A Doctor Is The Way To Go

By the time a person has been obese for most of their life, their health is in real danger. Their arteries are probably clogged, and they are experiencing pre-diabetic symptoms at an early age. Problems with blood sugar lead to early heart attack, blindness, kidney disease and strokes. The Pierce Clinic in Kansas City is one of many across the US that is helping people avoid the serious risks of obesity. You can find out more about their non-surgical medical weight loss program here, weight loss Kansas City.

In addition to all of that, severely overweight people need hip replacements, knee replacements, have bad ankles, and bad backs. Then they have problems attending movies, sitting in airplanes, and enjoying things such as hiking, boating, skiing, carnival rides, walking, and even sex.

Why Medical Weight Loss Programs Work

These kinds of programs are specifically tailored to each person. They’ll involve a dietitian that will tell you exactly what you should be eating at every meal. There will be an exercise physiologist that will plan out all of your daily workouts that take into consideration your physical abilities and calorie burn requirements, so everything is doable from start to finish.

The programs will also take into consideration the mental condition of those that have been trying to lose weight for a lifetime. They’ll need constant counseling to combat depression and the long term negative attitude they’ve developed over the years. Being fat for decades means they’ve been ridiculed thousands of times by those they love and people they don’t even know.

There will also be daily support groups involved to augment the counseling sessions. These are important because they’re where people that are all working towards the same objective can come together and know that they aren’t alone in their quests to lose weight. Many will be experiencing the exact same problems and can offer solutions to others that can be helpful.

A Medical Weight Loss Program Is A Lifestyle Change

While many diets are designed to help people lose a few pounds, a real medical program is a lifelong lifestyle change. People will need to change the foods they eat and the amounts they consume for the rest of their lives. They will have to commit to exercising every single day, forever.

If going to the counseling sessions is helping, then that may have to continue for years along with the support group and regular medical checkups. Once obesity gets to a life or death health stage, then the alternative is no longer up for discussion, it is do or die.

Losing weight for some people in our society has become nearly impossible using the fad diets that change on a daily basis. If you’ve struggled to lose weight for longer than you can remember, there are options available for medical weight loss. Maybe it’s time to see a doctor and find out exactly what you need to do to finally get healthy and lose the weight you desire.