Category Archives: Lifestyle

Get Rid of Toxins to Reduce Risk of Stroke

This information has been provided by Al Sears, MD and Doctor’s House Call. For more information or to sign up for a free subscription, visit alsearsmd.com.

Effects of Toxins

I’ve been warning you about the toxins in our environment for years.

They cause inflammation

They make you gain weight…

They cause you to feel fatigued…

Our exposure to them starts before we’re even born.

One study found 287 chemicals and toxins in the blood of newborn babies.1 It’s shocking.

What is in the air we breathe?

We breathe in toxins and air pollutants every day. Carbon dioxide, lead, nitrogen oxide, sulfur dioxide, and particulate matter (PM).

Causes of Stroke

Now, a new study reveals that air pollution is responsible for as many as one-third of all strokes.2 That’s because it contributes to high blood pressure and hardening of the arteries, which can lead to stroke.

hypertension

Another study looked at the effects of air pollution on heart disease. Six hundred thousand people were exposed to higher levels of PM for three months. Doctors then looked at blood samples from them. They found the people had increased blood sugar, triglyceride levels, and other factors that raise heart disease risk.3

They also had lower levels of HDL cholesterol. And HDL is important for protecting your heart.

Seems to me like air pollution is creating a booming business for Big Pharma and mainstream medicine.

Once you have symptoms of heart disease or if you’ve had a stroke, they have a pill for you!

stroke-symptoms

For stroke victims, your doctor might put you on a blood-thinning drug like warfarin. But studies prove that warfarin actually increases your risk of stroke.

brain-stroke

And if you have heart disease, your doctor has a lot of different kinds of drugs to choose from. Beta-blockers, ACE inhibitors, statins…

Effects of Prescription Drugs

But look at what these drugs actually do…

  • Beta-blockers decrease your cardiac output by blocking hormones that allow your heart to beat faster and harder
  • ACE inhibitors make you tired, weak and short of breath
  • Statins deplete your heart’s cellular energy and steal its power to pump

Naturally Reduce Your Risk of Heart Disease and Stroke

There are a lot of safe, natural ways to reduce your chances of heart disease and stroke. You can do this through proper nutrition, exercise and supplements that support a healthy heart.

How to Rid Your Body of Toxins

But if you want to get rid of the dangerous toxins in your body, your best bet is chelation therapy.

I recommend both IV chelation and oral chelation for my patients.

Chelation is the best way to detoxify your body.

chelation-therapy

What is chelation?

Chelation therapy is a treatment used to remove heavy metals from the blood.

The word “chelate” comes from the Greek word that means “claw.” And that’s what chelation does. The toxins are “clawed” painlessly out of your body.

How does chelation work?

At my clinic, I use calcium disodium EDTA for IV chelation. EDTA is a synthetic amino acid used to reverse heavy metal poisoning. The EDTA grabs hold of toxins while they’re in your bloodstream and carries them out through your kidneys.

You can also do oral chelation at home with an agent called DMSA. It comes in pill form.

First, you’ll be tested to see what heavy metals are in your system. Then you’ll be given a prescription for DMSA. Your exact dosage will be based on your weight, and will usually be administered over the course of several months.

Detox Your Body With Herbs

Call the Sears Institute for Anti-Aging Medicine at 561-784-7852 to schedule IV chelation or to arrange to do oral chelation at home — no matter where you live.

No matter which form of chelation you choose to do, here are some herbs that are natural detoxifiers. A few I recommend to my patients undergoing chelation are:

  1. Barley leaf. The leaf of the barley plant (not the grain) has amino acids that bind to toxins like chemicals and heavy metals. They then pull them out of your body. I suggest mixing 1-2 teaspoons of barley grass powder into your favorite juice or your morning smoothie.

barley-leaf

  1. Blue-green algae. A blue-green algae called spirulina helps detoxify the blood and maintain energy levels. It also helps improve circulation and maintain healthy blood pressure. Spirulina is usually sold as 500 mg tablets. I recommend 4-6 tablets spread throughout the day.

blue-green-algae

To Your Good Health,

Al Sears, MD

Al Sears, MD, CNS


1. “Body Burden: The Pollution in Newborns,” The Environmental Working Group, July 14, 2005
2. The Lancet. “For the first time, air pollution emerges as a leading risk factor for stroke worldwide.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 June 2016
3. Sade M.Y., Kloog I., Liberty I.F., Schwartz J., Novack, F. “The Association Between Air Pollution Exposure and Glucose and Lipids Levels,” The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 2016; jc.2016-1378

Why is the butterfly pea flower effective?

This information has been provided by Al Sears, MD and Doctor’s House Call. For more information or to sign up for a free subscription, visit alsearsmd.com.

 

If you have been following my story, you know I love traveling. One reason is I love to explore.

bali

Another reason?

I love to eat!

One of the great things about traveling the world is getting to sample the local cuisine. When I was living with the Guarani tribe in Peru, I drank beer made of yucca root that the native women spit into the ground and let ferment. I ate raw worms and grubs.

I’ve eaten the “Food of the Gods” in the Amazon. An incredible fruit called cupuaçu that tastes like a heavenly blend of chocolate and vanilla.

I’ve sampled so many unusual foods that it’s hard to surprise me. But that’s exactly what happened in Bali when I was served “blue rice” topped with coconut for dessert.

jasmine-rice-butterfly-pea

It was so bright and vivid I thought it had to be food coloring. And it was.

Sort of.

The brilliant blue color came from the butterfly pea plant. The flowers of the butterfly pea are the most spectacular of all the flowers in Bali. And that’s no small feat!

butterfly-pea-flower

My friend Lelir, a “Balian” known as a local healer on the island of Bali, grows her favorite flower in her own garden.

But as I learned from my friends Westi and Lelir, the butterfly pea plant is beloved in Bali for much more than its beauty.

The Balinese call it “Bunga telang.” It comes from the Indonesian words meaning having clear vision. Traditional herbalists on Bali use the roots to cure eye ailments and the flowers to cure eye infections like conjunctivitis, or “pink eye.”

conjunctivitis

But that’s just the beginning. Bunga telang is a medicinal mainstay in Balinese culture. I was amazed when Lelir told me about all the different ways the Balinese use it. So I decided to do some research of my own.

And what I found only added to my amazement. I included the butterfly pea in my book Healing Herbs of Bali, but the truth is I could have written an entire book just on this one plant!

Click here for more natural remedy articles.

Why is the butterfly pea effective?

Butterfly pea is one of the few plants that has cyclotides in it. These are peptides that have antitumor properties and cause cancer cell death because they can penetrate the cancer cell membrane.

A recent study in China found butterfly pea to be very effective against certain lung cancer cell lines.1 Other studies have shown that a powder made from the ground-up leaves of the butterfly pea can enhance memory and brain power. 2

enhance-memory-brain-power

A team of researchers in India found that butterfly pea increases the levels of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine.3 Acetylcholine is important for communication in your brain. And it’s one of the brain chemicals that decreases the most as you age.

acetylcholine-pathway

How does the butterfly pea improve your thinking?

The less of it you have, the slower the messages will travel in your brain. They might even break down and stop traveling altogether.

Low acetylcholine levels can cause loss of memory and coordination as you get older. Butterfly pea improves your thinking and balance naturally because it reverses this process.

Effects of butterfly pea

Here are just a few of the other healing properties of the butterfly pea plant:

  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Anti-anxiety
  • Anti-asthmatic
  • Pain relieving

It’s like a full-stop natural drugstore in one gorgeous little plant.

Growing the butterfly pea

Butterfly pea can grow year-round in the warmer parts of the U.S., like where I live in South Florida. But because it’s such a fast grower, many people in colder climates plant it as an annual in the warm summer months. It makes a nice, quick covering for a lattice, trellis or chain-link fence.

If you grow butterfly pea in your garden, you can dry the flowers yourself and store them for future use. You can also order dried butterfly pea flowers online.

How to use butterfly pea flower

There are so many ways to get the healing power of the butterfly pea plant. You can add the petals to a salad or brew a beautiful blue tea. Here’s how I do it:

butterfly-pea-tea

How to make butterfly pea flower tea

  1. Steep about a dozen butterfly pea flowers in hot water until the flowers turn pale. About 10 minutes. The water will turn a bright blue.
  2. Strain the liquid and discard the flowers.
  3. Add honey to taste.

It’s great served warm, but I like it best over ice.

To Your Good Health,

Al Sears, MD

Al Sears, MD, CNS


1. Sen Z, Zhan X, Jing J, Yi Z, Wanqi Z. “Chemosensitizing activities of cyclotides from Clitoria ternatea in paclitaxel-resistant lung cancer cells.” Oncol Lett. 2013;5(2):641-644.
2. Jain N, Ohal C, Shroff S, Bhutada R, Somani R, Kasture V, Kasture S. “Clitoria ternatea and the CNS.” Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 2003;75(3):529-36.
3. Rai K, Murthy K, Karanth K, Nalini K, Rao M, Srinivasan K. “Clitoria ternatea root extract enhances acetylcholine content in rat hippocampus.” Fitoterapia. 2002;73(7-8):685-9.

Why Should You Take Supplements?

This information has been provided by Al Sears, MD and Doctor’s House Call. For more information or to sign up for a free subscription, visit alsearsmd.com.

 

Health Alert 11

So you eat your vegetables, you don’t smoke or drink to excess. You avoid junk food and you exercise. So do you really need to take vitamins?

You’ve heard the arguments pro and con. You’re probably ready to throw your hands in the air and conclude that no one really knows. Before you do, look at some pearls collected by someone who has spent his life studying this issue in detail. I think you will find, as I do, the evidence is quite convincing.

? A USDA study done in 1992 concluded that only 4% of the 22,000 Americans studied were getting even the minimum recommended daily allowance (RDA) of their essential vitamins.

? A more recent US government survey found that out of the 21,000 people surveyed, none of them managed to eat the recommended daily allowances (RDA) of all the ten basic nutrients studied.

? On any given day, 91% of Americans do not consume the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables, with 70% not consuming any vitamin C rich fruits, and 80% not consuming any carotene containing vegetables.

? Today, foods have much less nutritional value than in the past due to modern agricultural methods. You’d have to eat 60 servings of spinach to get the same amount of iron you would get from just one serving in 1948.

? In order to get the RDA for vitamin E today, you’d have to eat 25 cups of spinach a day.

? 65 % of American diets are deficient in zinc, which is important for proper immune system functioning.

? Americans often eat the same small number of foods every day, without much variety.

The bottom line is that unless you are a very rare exception, you’re probably not getting even the minimum requirement of all your important vitamins and minerals. And that’s just part of the story.

* Vitamins For Disease Treatment, Prevention, And To Keep You Young *

There is a growing mountain of evidence that vitamins can have other health benefits beyond preventing deficiency.

Nobel laureate Linus Pauling was right when he said, “recommended daily allowances only give levels of vitamins and minerals that will prevent death or serious illness from vitamin deficiency. To get real health benefits from vitamins, you need to get more than just the minimal recommended amounts.”

In 1997, the Western Journal of Medicine published a study that showed that $20 billion dollars in hospital charges could have potentially been prevented by taking proper amounts of vitamins and minerals.

Vitamin E, for instance, has been shown to be beneficial in treatment of coronary heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease. These health benefits only come at antioxidant doses of at least 200 IU. Antioxidant doses of vitamin E are virtually impossible to get in the diet. You would have to eat 2 pounds of sunflower seeds every day.

In larger doses, niacin has been shown to be very effective in lowering cholesterol.

I have seen many cases of high blood pressure completely resolve with CoQ10 eliminating the need for medications.

* What You Should Do *

I have taken a multivitamin nearly every day for 30 years and you should too. You should choose a multivitamin that also has 100% of the required minerals. If you are beyond the age of 35, you should take doses larger than the RDA for antioxidants. It is possible to find all the required vitamins and minerals at antioxidant levels in a single supplement.

My antioxidant recommendations are: mixed carotenes 25,000 IU, vitamin C 1000 mg, vitamin E 400 IU, selenium 200 mcg and CoQ10 30 mg.

It will be easier on your gut if you take your multivitamin with a meal.

Store your multivitamin in the refrigerator. It will stay active longer and help remind you to take it regularly.

One further piece of advice – unless you have been diagnosed with iron deficiency, choose a multivitamin without iron. You don’t need additional iron and it can interfere with the absorption of other minerals, give you constipation and leave a foul taste in your mouth.

Al Sears, MD

Common Supplement Linked to Cancer

This information has been provided by Al Sears, MD and Doctor’s House Call. For more information or to sign up for a free subscription, visit alsearsmd.com.

 

Health Alert 12

There is recent evidence linking chondroitin sulfate – a popular arthritis supplement — and prostate cancer.

I’m writing today to clarify the issue.

The thinking for taking chondroitin for arthritis goes something like this. When you have arthritis your joints get inflamed. The inflammation damages the cartilage in your joints. When the cartilage (normally smooth) is roughed up by inflammation, friction is caused and pain ensues. Chondroitin is a basic building block of cartilage. So maybe taking it will help your body to repair the damaged cartilage.

This line of reasoning seems to make sense. But in medicine, we need more than a line of reasoning. It makes sense to start with a reasonable proposition. But then you need evidence. More on the evidence for chondroitin in arthritis later. But first, the problem with chondroitin.

* The Link *

The problem with chondroitin was articulated in the July 2002 issue of Health Science International. In an article titled “Natural Doesn’t Always Mean Harmless: Arthritis Supplement Could Lead to the Spread of Prostate Cancer” cancer specialist Charles E. Myers Jr. reports that (1) chondroitin is often found in prostatic tumors and that (2) when tissue levels of chondroitin are high the likelihood of prostate cancer spreading is greater.

One study in particular followed men who had their prostate glands removed due to cancer. The level of chondroitin sulfate was measured in the tissues around the prostate for 5 years. In the group with low chondroitin levels, the reoccurrence of cancer was low at 14%. What happened if the tissue chondroitin was high? The cancer returned in 47 % of those men. Cancer Research 1999 May 15; 59 (10): 2324-8)

Another study published in the Journal of Urology reported elevated levels of chondroitin in the tissues of not only prostate cancer but also in men with benign swelling of the prostate or BPH.

None of this proves that taking chondroitin sulfate supplements will give you cancer. It is however, suspicious.

* Safe Alternatives for Damaged Joints*

I have never been a proponent of chondroitin supplements because I have not been able to find substantial evidence that chondroitin is effective in eliminating arthritic symptoms. Since there are other safer and more effective alternatives to chondroitin, I recommend you do not take it.

Alternatives I DO recommend include glucosamine and MSM.

Glucosamine is a natural component of cartilage. I have read several studies that demonstrate its value in reducing symptoms of arthritis. Glucosamine is often paired with chondroitin in supplement form. But, there is no evidence that glucosamine with chondroitin works any better than glucosamine alone.

Patients at the Integrative Medical Clinic at the University of Arizona have reported success against arthritic pain by taking glucosamine — regardless of whether or not it was paired with chondroitin! (Dr. Andrew Weil’s Self Healing, August 1999)

Two recommendations:

(1) Take 500mg of glucosamine twice a day (with food, as a few of my patients have reported stomach upset if they took it on an empty stomach.)

(2) Take one gram (1000 mg) of MSM (methyl sulfonyl methane) daily – also with food.

MSM is a naturally occurring sulfur compound found in very small amounts in vegetables, fruits, fish and meats. Research indicates that sulfur is required to repair injured cartilage.

A double-blinded study at the UCLA School of Medicine found that arthritic patients who were given MSM for 6 weeks had an 82% reduction in pain. And further, in contrast to chondroitin, MSM seems to reduce the risks of some types of cancers in laboratory animals.

I have seen dramatic reductions in arthritic symptoms with MSM. In fact, it is our first choice at the wellness center.

Al Sears, MD

How Much Do You Need?

This information has been provided by Al Sears, MD and Doctor’s House Call. For more information or to sign up for a free subscription, visit alsearsmd.com.

 

Health Alert 15

You are faced with a dilemma every time you shop for an herb, vitamin or nutritional supplement. You find what you are looking for and there on the shelf sets bottle after bottle of different amounts of the same supplement. How much do you need?

I encountered this problem recently. Imagine what you would do if it happened to you. Let’s say you are on vacation in the mountains of Colorado and your friend begins to suffer from mild altitude sickness. You know the best solution for this is the herb gingko biloba. You want to give her a dose of 200mg with plenty of water every 4 to 6 hours until she fells better.

You call the hotel convenient store to ask if they had gingko. Yea they have it. How much? The clerk doesn’t know. You walk down to the lobby and find the supplement packaged as six capsules in a plastic pouch for $5.95. The amount of gingko per serving is 10 mg. A serving has two capsules.

So to give 200 mg, you would have to give 20 servings or 40 capsules. Four times a day would be 160 capsules or about $160 per day. Of course even if you are willing to pay that much you wouldn’t want or expect anyone to swallow that many.

The point is that even if you know the correct remedy and can find it on hand you can’t use it for the desired effect unless you also know and can find the correct dose. Even at a high altitude store, the remedy that was on hand to treat altitude sickness could not be used in doses needed to be effective.

Adding to the problem, the labels can be hard to read and the choices daunting.

Even worse, sometimes the label won’t tell you the amount contained but has something like “proprietary blend”

Today’s Health Alert will provide you with a few simple rules you may find helpful. They have helped my patients.

* What You Need to Know about Nutrients with Known Requirements*

• The FDA is responsible for setting labeling requirements for vitamins and dietary supplements.

• The FDA has changed their system of naming several times and has created some confusion. What used to be called recommended daily allowance (RDA) was changed to minimum daily allowance. Recently it has been changed again to simply daily value (DV).

• All supplements that have a known minimum requirement are required to list their amount as a percentage of that minimum. Here is a list of the daily values of common nutrients.

RDA

Vitamin A 5,000 IU

Vitamin B6 2.0 mg.

Vitamin C 6O mg.

Vitamin D 400 IU

Vitamin E 30 IU

Calcium 1000 mg.

Phosphorus 1000 mg.

Zinc 15 mg.

Niacin 20 mg.

Magnesium 400 mg.

You should use this Daily Value as a reference point. It tells you how much of a nutrient is necessary to prevent symptoms of deficiency. It is important to note, however, that some nutrients have additional roles beyond preventing deficiencies see Health Alert #11

* How to Handle Supplements without Established Requirements *

• Realize that amounts are still important.

• If a supplement has any active ingredient without the amount specified, don’t take it.

• Know the amount of a supplement you want to take before you enter the store. Unfortunately, you cannot rely on the sales clerk.

Al Sears, MD

Building Your Dream Body

This information has been provided by Al Sears, MD and Doctor’s House Call. For more information or to sign up for a free subscription, visit alsearsmd.com.

 

Health Alert 18

Today is the first in a series of letters designed to teach you what I know about transforming your body into a healthier and more attractive shape.

You probably have a certain image of yourself you would like to attain. You would like to transform your physique. Perhaps it’s a masculine chest and arms, perhaps shapely hips. If you’re like most of my patients, you would like a trimmer waist. It’s what gives men that V-taper we associate with manly health and vitality. And it gives women the ultimate in sexy figures, that hourglass shape.

We all know we look better when we have a lean waist but don’t let anyone tell you that leanness is an issue of vanity. Quite to the contrary, it is probably the biggest single predictor of good health I can assess in my patients.

And that’s exactly what I do. We measure the leanness of all new patients. It’s non-invasive, fast and inexpensive. The information is very valuable. I really don’t understand why physicians don’t do it. But you can do it yourself.

All science starts with measurement. If we want to be scientific about changing your body, we have to accurately measure what we are striving to change.

* What You Should Measure *

There are several ways you can measure your leanness. The best is by measuring your body composition. The easiest way to do this is with skin calipers. You can get them at exercise equipment stores or you can order them online at (www.bodytrends.com). They come with simple instruction manuals. They really are quite easy to use.

Another method is to measure your waist and hip girths. Simply wrap a tape measure around your waist at your navel and record the number in inches. Next measure the circumference around your hips at their widest point.

Another even easier way is to grab your skin between your finger and thumb just to the side of your navel and measure the thickness of the skin fold.

* What You Should Do with Your Measurement *

Now that you have your measurement, you need to know what it means. Here is a general overview for each technique.

Body composition for men should be 10-20 % fat and for women 15-25% fat.

Waist girth should be less than your hip girth for both men and women. Even better is a waist girth 1 inch or more smaller than hips for men and 3 inches or more for women.

Lastly, when you pinch your skin beside your navel it should measure less than 1 inch in both men and women.

If you passed the test for leanness, congratulations! If you didn’t, record the measurements with today’s date and commit to changing it. With the right tools, it may be easier than you think.

Next time, we will talk about the second step toward building your dream body.

Al Sears, MD

Who’s Health Is It?

This information has been provided by Al Sears, MD and Doctor’s House Call. For more information or to sign up for a free subscription, visit alsearsmd.com.

 

No one cares about your health and the health of your loved ones more than you do. We at the Wellness Research Foundation believe that the best way to ensure quality in healthcare is to allow you to be in control. We believe you have an inherent right to decide on quality, expertise, respect and alternative treatments for your own health.

Unfortunately, the modern medical system all too often robs you of this natural right. Drug company marketing incentives directly conflict with your need for honest information. Hospitals and insurance companies make decisions concerning your health care options without your consent. Your own doctor has seen his authority eroded, and worse, has become increasingly dependent on medical information biased by economic influences beyond his control.

John Stewart Mill said, “A man’s (or woman’s) autonomy over his (or her) own body is absolute.” We are committed to joining you in reclaiming this right as we proclaim the following principles.

Your Health Emancipation Proclamation

1) You should be free to choose, according to your own standards.

2) You must have absolute “veto power” over any medical treatment option.

3) You should have access to medical research done by independent companies who will not benefit financially from the results.

4) You should be informed of potential side effects of any treatment option proposed.

5) You should have public education programs focused on wellness.

6) You should have equal and uncensored access to natural alternatives to conventional medical procedures and treatments.

To support you as a partner in these collaborate efforts, the WELLNESS RESEARCH FOUNDATION proclaims our commitment to provide research, education, publishing and an unbiased wellness information forum.

The Wellness Research Foundation Promises To:

Conduct new research to determine the effectiveness of more natural treatments.

  • Collate neglected international research data for a broader base of options.
  • Develop and support not-for-profit wellness programs.
  • Hold public seminars to disseminate health improvement strategies.
  • Cooperate with public institutions to share wellness findings.
  • Publish original, primary research articles.
  • Publish not-for-profit books, pamphlets, and reports on wellness and disease.
  • Provide a monthly wellness letter.
  • Discuss representative health concerns of all ages and groups.
  • Provide a medium for the developing, expressing and interacting of diverse views.

Proclaimed by the Board of Directors of the WELLNESS RESEARCH FOUNDATION.

Furnished versus Unfurnished

Renters will often be faced with the decision of whether to opt for a furnished apartment or an unfurnished apartment. The majority of apartments available for rent are likely to be unfurnished apartments but there are some apartments which are available with furnishings. There are some situations in which it makes sense to choose a furnished apartment. Likewise there are situations in which a furnished apartment is not a good idea. This article will discuss these situations in an effort to assist the reader in determining whether or not it is better to rent a furnished apartment or an unfurnished apartment.

iqmatics_ss2What Does Furnished Mean?

A furnished apartment may mean different things to different people. Some renters may expect a furnished apartment to have each and every room completely furnished with every possible piece of furniture. Typical furnishings may include a bed, a dresser, nightstands, alarm clock with built in radio, a television, stereo equipment, DVD player, an entertainment center, couch, coffee table, end tables, kitchen table and kitchen chairs. It may also include dining room furniture such as a dining room table, chairs and a curial cabinet. Others may assume a furnished apartment includes only the necessary furnishings such as a bed, couch, kitchen table and chairs. This essentially eliminates all electrical equipment as well as furniture deemed to be decorative in nature such as a coffee table, end tables or nightstands.

When is a Furnished Apartment a Good Idea?

A furnished apartment is a good idea for recent college graduates who lived on campus in a dorm room prior to graduation. These students likely have very little furniture of their own. In this case, renting a furnished apartment may be more economical than purchasing enough furniture to live comfortably in the apartment.

The overall cost of a furnished apartment may be higher in the long run because the renter may pay more but those who are unable to pay a great deal of money upfront to furnish an apartment might not mind paying this additional amount. For these renters, they are not likely to notice the impact of a slightly higher monthly rent payment but they would definitely feel the impact of significant purchases such as a bed, couch or dining room set.

When is an Unfurnished Apartment a Good Idea?

There are certain situations in which an unfurnished apartment is a good idea. This includes a situation where the renter has already accumulated enough furniture to furnish the entire apartment. In this case, selecting a furnished apartment would not make sense because the renter would have to find a location to store either his own furniture or the furniture supplied by the apartment complex. The cost of storage can add up very quickly. Additionally, the renter probably pays a higher rent to stay in a furnished apartment.

An unfurnished apartment is also a good idea when the renter currently does not have any furniture but is looking forward to purchasing furniture and has already saved up enough money to make these purchases. In this situation the renter will likely select an unfurnished apartment and plan on shopping for furniture almost immediately after taking possession of the rental property.

Storing Extra Furniture

Renters who opt for a fully furnished apartment when they already have a sufficient amount of furniture have to determine what they will do with their furniture while they are staying in the rental apartment. The options are basically as follows:furniture

* Sell or give away all currently owned furniture
* Store your own furniture
* Store the furniture which comes with the apartment

While each of the above options is certainly valid, the renter should seriously consider whether or not they want to pay additional storage fees just to rent a furnished apartment. Renters who plan to sell or donate their current furniture do not face this dilemma but those who plan to store one set of furniture should carefully consider the price of storage. They should also consult with the leasing agent to determine if there are any contract items which prohibit placing furniture owned by the apartment complex in an offsite storage facility. There may be provisions which allow for these items to be stored but require them to be stored onsite.

Online Shopping During Festive Season

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shoppingShopping online during the holidays is quickly becoming one of the most popular options for shoppers. Although many shoppers still enjoy the hustle and bustle of doing their holiday shopping in traditional stores and may also enjoy the festive decorations festooning stores during the holiday season, many shoppers are glad to have the option to do at least part of their holiday shopping online. This is because there are a myriad of benefits to shopping online during the holiday season. Two of the most common benefits include the ability to do last minute shopping online and the convenience of avoiding overcrowded stores during the holiday season. This article will discuss these two advantages in greater detail and will also provide information on some of the other advantages to online shopping which are also important to holiday shoppers.

Last Minute Shopping for Holiday Gifts

Although there are some shoppers who are well prepared and do their holiday shopping in advance, many shoppers find themselves scrambling to purchase gifts at the last minute. These last minute shoppers far outnumber the well organized individuals who complete their holiday shopping months in advance. This category also includes not only chronic procrastinators who put off holiday shopping until the last minute but also includes well intentioned shoppers who were caught by surprise with a need to purchase gifts for a few extra people at the last minute. Fortunately for these last minute shoppers, online shopping take a great deal of the stress out of last minute shopping.

One of the greatest benefits of last minute shopping is the ability to ship gifts to friends and relatives. The available shipping options may even make it possible for shoppers to have these gifts arrive within 24 hours after making the purchase. Shoppers may pay a premium for these express shipping services but it can be a worthwhile investment for last minute shoppers who would otherwise be caught empty handed.

Avoiding Holiday Crowds by Shopping Onlinemakeup_colletion_set

The crowds at traditional stores can unbelievable during the holiday season. Finding a parking space often becomes a stressful situation and simply navigating stores can be chaotic. While some shoppers thrive in this type of environment most shoppers find this to be stressful. Furthermore some shoppers may enjoy this type of environment for brief periods of time but may have difficulty completing their holiday shopping with so much chaos surrounding them. Fortunately, online shopping provides a welcomed escape to much of the shopping chaos of traditional stores.

Online shoppers can shop when it is most convenient for them and typically the most troubling crowd related problems they experience is slow loading of websites which are overloaded by website visitors. Waiting for a few extra moments for a website to reload may be somewhat frustrating but it is significantly less stressful than standing in line at a crowded store for long periods of time.

Added Benefits to Shopping Online During the Holidays

There are also other benefits to shopping online during the holidays which do not necessarily pertain to the holiday season but certainly simplify the process of shopping online for holiday gifts. One of these benefits is the ability to comparison shop with ease. When shopping online comparison shopping is as easy as opening two different websites from competitors and comparing the products they have available and the prices they are charging for these products. This is much simpler than running around from one store to another to find out which stores have a particular item available and how much each store is currently charging for this item.

Another benefit to shopping online is the ability to purchase items from stores located far away. Holiday shoppers who limit themselves to traditional stores are also limiting the products which are available to them. These traditional shoppers can only purchase items which they physically find in a store while online shoppers can search stores around the world for a particular item. This can be particular useful for shoppers who are looking for a specific item which is hard to locate.

Holiday Beauty and Grooming Gift For him


Your man should have an established daily hygiene routine that keeps his skin fresh, his beard in style and his body smelling good. Treat him with a practical gift with a personal and pampering touch that he’ll enjoy for the everyday and extraordinary!

Rev him up to face every day with this collection of classic Kiehl’s formulas for men featuring limited-edition packaging by designers Jeffrey Costello and Robert Tagliapietra.

kiehls Ultimate Man Full Body Refueling SetKiehl’s Ultimate Man Full Body Refueling Set($59, kiehls.com)

The perfect gift for any man, The Jack Pack set contains a bounty of Jack Black customer favorites to leave skin healthy, hydrated and protected so you look and feel your best.

Jack Black The Jack Pack Set Limited EditionJack Black The Jack Pack Set Limited Edition, ($49,nordstrom.com)

A limited-edition set featuring a LUNA™ for Men, a gel cleanser, and Proraso shaving and grooming products to provide a luxurious skincare and grooming experience.

Foreo LUNA™ for Men Ultimate Grooming Collection with PRORASOForeo LUNA™ for Men Ultimate Grooming Collection with PRORASO, ($199, sephora.com)

The Full Size Kit includes all four elements of The Perfect Shave®, Pre-Shave Oil, Shaving Cream, a Shaving Brush, and our After-Shave Balm. The combination of these quality ingredients, handcrafted accessories, and expert shaving technique provides optimal closeness while helping ward against ingrown hairs, razor burn, and nicks and cuts, while leaving behind a soft and smooth face.

theartofshavingThe Art of Shaving The 4 Elements of the Perfect Shave™ – Unscented Full Size, ($120, theartofshaving.com)

The pure, clean floral woodiness of Lacoste’s White Edition wraps the skin in a clean, crisp, fresh scent that makes you feel elegantly audacious, light, and cool. The bottle echoes the timeless simplicity and understated sophistication of the Lacoste polo shirt itself—and the elegant audaciousness of the fragrance inside.

Lacoste Eau de Lacoste L.12.12 White Gift SetLacoste Eau de Lacoste L.12.12 White Gift Set, ($75, sephora.com)

Designed specifically for men’s skin, MAX LS by Lab Series Skincare for Men is a premium anti-aging skincare regimen. The products help maximize skin’s performance with advanced technology that promotes natural cellular repair and delivers both immediate and long-term benefits, for younger-looking skin.

Lab Series Skincare for Men 'MAX LS' Deluxe SetLab Series Skincare for Men ‘MAX LS’ Deluxe Set, ($120, nordstrom.com)

Wake up winter showers and deeply cleanse your skin with this limited-edition set for him by MOLTON BROWN London. Dynamic, hearty and invigorating.

MOLTON BROWN LondonMOLTON BROWN London ‘Signature Washes for Him’ Set, (£45.00,johnlewis.com)

Customised formulas meet the daily needs of his skin. It’s the science behind smooth, comfortable, revitalized skin.

Clinique-For-Men-Essentials-KitClinique For Men Essentials Kit, (£30.00, boots.com)

This Taylor of Old Bond Street Jermyn Street Pure Badger and Shaving Cream Bowl Set is the perfect package for the discerning gentleman. Formulated without any parabens making it suitable for even the most sensitive skin, this set contains a handmade pure badger shaving brush, which helps to produce a really creamy lather that lifts the hairs from the face, and a bowl of luxury shaving cream from the Jermyn Street range.

Taylor of Old Bond Street Jermyn Badger Shaving Brush SetTaylor of Old Bond Street Jermyn Badger Shaving Brush Set, ($55, mankind.co.uk)

A seductive fragrance for men, Armani Code is a sexy blend of fresh lemon and bergamot softened with hints of orange tree blossom and warmed with soothing guaiac wood and tonka bean.

3614271202000_Code-Men-Gift-Set_01Giorgio Armani Armani Code Gift Set($84, giorgioarmanibeauty-usa.com)



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