Category: Frugal Living Tips

How to Save Money on Independent Health Insurance

Independent Health Insurance Saving money on independent health insurance can change your life for the better, especially when it saves you money! Although the hunt for a cost-saving plan can be a tiring one, it is well worth the energy.

Whether it’s a covered Fresno resident or an LA native, finding the right independent health insurance plan doesn’t always mean it has to be the most expensive.

There are a number of ways to save money on independent health insurance. Here are some of the most effective:

Do the Research

Don’t just settle for Google searches or chat forums. It’s so important to talk to friends, relatives and trusted third parties. Listen to their experiences and gain insight that will benefit your search for the best plan.

There is no better resource for finding the right independent health insurance than people in your network who may require the same care you do.

If you have a good relationship with your primary care physician, don’t hesitate to take the conversation into their office. Receptionists, nurses, and doctors are all people, too. And, they might have insider tips to help you save more money!

Shop Around

Go a step further by chatting up insurance agents from different companies. Keep notes about each provider, and be prepared to compare differences in coverage and cost.

If coverage from one provider is the same as another but has a bigger price tag, talk about it! Ask questions, and see if there are other options that can match or reduce the cost you’re looking at.

Keep notes about each provider, and be prepared to compare differences in coverage and cost.

If coverage from one provider is the same as another but has a bigger price tag, talk about it! Ask questions, and see if there are other options that can match or reduce the cost you’re looking at.

Cut Costs Even More

Using these tips, you can save beyond the price of independent health insurance.

Non-insurance options

These types of discounted plans can be offered by banks to customers or unions and nonprofits to their members. Contact a representative to find out what the qualifications are.

Find a local dental program

Schools and dental academies are always looking for patients to practice on. And don’t worry, everything is supervised by professional educators. The cost of these services is extremely low, and the quality of the service can sometimes be better than a regular dentist office.

Visit clinics instead of the ER

Trips to the emergency room can rack up a lot of money. Unless the situation is an actual emergency (if it is, go to the emergency room!), opt for an urgent care clinic instead.

Use free screening services

Use the state website to find low-cost or free preventative screening services. Find out the ones closest to you here.

Keep tabs on medical bills

Sometimes the administrative personnel at hospitals or doctors can make mistakes. Watch bank account statements to ensure that you are not overcharged for visits and services.

Mix it up

If someone doesn’t need medical, dental, and vision insurance, weigh different options. Maybe medical and vision are crucial, but dental work will be sufficient with dental school visits. There are always options. Weigh them, and pick the best combination for the lowest cost.

One of the key takeaways is to always ask questions. Ask insurance agents any and everything that comes to mind.

After all, the more someone knows, the more they can save!

Check out more beneficial tips here at our blog!

5 Teas Around the World for Your Health

fotolia 166917974 subscription monthly m It’s never a better time to be a tea drinker. Far from the days of drinking stale bags of twinnings from your grandmother’s shelf, tea fans today can enjoy the benefits of an industry that finds teas around the world.

Why is tea becoming so popular? Maybe it’s because we’re starting to realize the variety of health benefits you can associate with different types of tea. While we all know green tea is healthy, not a lot of us know how.

Take a look at the wonderful health benefits of this variety of teas!

Healthiest Teas Around The World

It can be hard to find the right teas. Some are tasty and healthy, others are not. These teas are some of the healthiest you’ll find in the world tea directory.

Genmaicha: Slim Down

While it may seem strange to mix a combination of green tea and rice, there are a variety of benefits you can find in a cup of genmaicha. One of the most prominent is that this tea has been known to help people reach their weight loss goals!

If you want to slim down, you should head to the tea aisle of your local supermarket. Or better yet, find a local artisan tea producer.

Ashwagandha Tea: Relax

You need to calm down! Stress is literally killing you, and if you fail to do something about it, you’ll die far too young.

One of the best ways to do it is with a relaxing cup of tea. Drinking Ashwagandha tea has been proven to help you relax. It’s tasty, easy to drink, and can go a long way towards improving your life.

Oolong: Boost Your Metabolism

A lot of us raise our fists to the sky and curse our metabolism. How can we burn calories if our food stays in the same place for days?

Oolong tea is a solution: it’s one of the best teas around the world for kicking your metabolism into gear! A scientific study even showed that it can boost both energy metabolism and fat oxidation!

Ginseng: Kick Up Your Immune System

Along with being a delicious tea, ginseng is extremely popular as a form of alternative medicine. One of the reasons why is the tea’s ability to boost your immune system!

Kick back and enjoy a delicious cup of ginseng if you want to kick yourself into high gear.

Peppermint Tea: Calm Your Stomach

Nobody likes calling in sick. If you wake up with a stomach ache but still need to get into work, you can heal using peppermint tea!

On top of that, it’s also delicious: who doesn’t like the cooling and Christmasy taste of peppermint! For you tummy and taste buds, you’ll need to enjoy a cup of this one!

More Health Tips

Drinking tea is one of the best things you can do for your health. But it’s also highly important to stay on top of all of the health and fitness tips out there.

Keep reading this health blog to follow all of the fitness tips you can: from one mom to another.

Yoga For Back Pain: Relaxing Poses For The Working Mom

yoga for back painBack pain is a common nuisance in the lives of many Americans. In fact, 80% of all Americans will experience some sort of back pain during their lifetime. Back pain can have significant effects on the life of a person, especially a mother.

Forget the actual pregnancy, mothers are continually picking up their children and picking up after their children. It’s no surprise that chronic back pain is prevalent in mothers.

The good news is there’s a free solution that you can use on a daily basis to give your back great relief from pain: yoga.

With gentle movement through certain yoga poses you can increase the stability and agility of your back. We’ve done the heavy lifting for you and have compiled a list of the best poses to try:

Downward Dog

This may be one of the most basic and beginner yoga poses, but it can be an excellent pose for helping you get rid of neck and back pain. Keep your feet hip-distance apart and hands shoulder-distance apart. Don’t let your back arch more than it needs to.

Keep your heels pressed to the ground and press your back through the inner and outer parts of your legs with equal pressure. Pull your spine and head forwards to your hands. Keep your shoulders and back pulled tight as you press through your fingers and arms.

This stretch can provide a whole-body realignment. Take many breaths as you perform this pose.

If you aren’t experiencing any relief from this pose, you might want to ask yourself “Where is the best chiropractor near me?”, and then head swiftly in for an appointment.

Child’s Pose

Child’s Pose is the ultimate pose for back relaxation. Keep your knees wide and bring your knees together for a fantastic neutral stretch.  Let your head fall to the floor and put a yoga block or towel under your forehead for comfort.

Breathe slowly as you reach forward. This pose brings energy to the entirety of your spine as you release parts of the lumbar and vertebrates. The tension in your back will dissolve as you breathe through the pose.

If you need some guidance, many yoga studios have coupons and discounts for their classes! Yoga for back pain is easy to do in groups or in a solo setting.

Wall Plank For the Best Yoga For Back Pain

Stand in front of a wall at arm’s length, reach forward and plant your palms on the wall. Keep your spine long as you walk your legs back and fold at the waist. When you get to an L-shape, reach through your tailbone and legs towards the floor while you move your back and head towards the wall.

Holding this pose for a few minutes with deep exhales can give your lower back great relief. When it comes to yoga for back pain, this is one of the easiest and most beneficial!

Relief

Back pain can be painful and annoying. But yoga will not only give you physical relief, it can also center your heart, mind, and soul. As a mother, you deserve some extra self-love and care on a regular basis.

For more tips on yoga for back pain, health, and fitness, contact us today!

Better Than Fruit for Breakfast: Delicious Food to Fuel Your Day

fruit for breakfast Don’t worry I’m not going to start this article talking about how important it is to eat breakfast in the morning. You already know that!

However, if you are like me you often end up eating the same thing every morning because of its convenience. And while fruit is a fantastic and healthy option, sometimes you just need a treat.

Here are five delicious treats that are better than fruit for breakfast.

1. Oats

Did you know oats have been proven to reduce your risk of heart attacks, strokes, and cancer? These super foods are incredibly rich in healthy compounds and great at eliminating the not-so-healthy ones.

Not all oats are created equal though.

If you want to maximize the good ingredient, avoid eating packaged and processed oats. Oftentimes these are filled with too much sugar and preservatives.

2. Eggs

The second food to keep your eye on for breakfast is eggs.

Not only are they packed with protein and essential vitamins, but they’re incredibly versatile as well. One day you could have a poached egg, and the next you could have them scrambled.

I love to make omelets. This allows me to get in some of those other essential vitamins and minerals through added vegetables.

This is a plate that you can get creative with and one that will be a healthy alternative to your classic fruit dish.

3. Waffles

Next is waffles, and yes I do mean it! Waffles and pancakes can be a delicious and healthy treat for breakfast, especially when made with whole grain.

One of the benefits of waffles is the variety of toppings you can add to it. Whether you’re craving something sweet or salty.

Another benefit is that they are so easy to make! Just pull out your bella waffle maker and whip them up with simple, everyday ingredients.

Within 5 minutes you’ll have a delicious and filling breakfast snack.

4. Crepes

Like waffles and pancakes, crepes are another delicious alternative with lots of topping options.

Entire businesses have been devoted to making great crepe recipes that are both sweet and savory. However, regardless of your taste palette, you can be sure that the crepes won’t add much sodium or cholesterol to your diet.

Bonus tip: Add peanut butter to get a little extra protein in your day.

5. Smoothies

If you are still craving fruit for breakfast, but you want to have a change in your routine, smoothies are a great alternative.

You can never go wrong with strawberry and banana blends. Add spinach or kale to get an extra dose of fiber and keep you fueled for the rest of the day.

Plus they are great for when you have to eat on the go!

Enjoy More than Just Fruit for Breakfast

Each of these options provides delicious and healthy alternatives that will keep you fueled until lunch.

As an added bonus, they’ll also leave more room for yummy desserts at the end of the day like my favorite triple-layer cracker toffee bars. Yum!

Speaking of which, I think I might have some cooking to do.

Do you have any special breakfast treats? Share them below in the comments!

Want more awesome tips? Check out our website!

DIY Bed Bug Management: When to Call an Exterminator

diy bed bugBed bugs are notoriously hard to get rid of.

Still, if you see the pests in your own home, don’t panic and call an exterminator just yet. There are ways you can start combatting the invasion on your own — for a lot less.

Try these DIY bed bug tips, and make sure to learn about what you’re dealing with.

Armed with the right information, you can decide when to tackle it yourself and when it’s time to call in extra help.

DIY Bed Bug Management Tips

1. Kill Them With Cleanliness

Washing bedding at a temperature of at least 120 degrees with laundry soap can kill the infestation. The “hot” setting on your washing machine should do the trick.

Bed bugs also can’t live through a hot dryer session. So, dry your bedding items on high after washing and you should be able to eliminate the problem.

Use a sealed bag to take bedding to the laundry room. This way, you won’t contaminate your existing hamper.

2. Vacuum and Seal

Do a thorough vacuuming of your mattress, bed frame, under the bed, baseboards, or anything else that touches the bed. The bed bugs will probably hide in any crevices they can. So, be sure to get into hidden spots.

Throw out the used vacuum bag outside, so bugs can’t get back in. Then, buy a bed bug-proof case to seal your clean mattress.

3. Spray the Bugs Away

Get a pesticide that works on bed bugs and scrub down your bed frame, headboard, baseboards, dresser, and other hard surfaces. Bed bugs can’t live in metal furniture. However, they will nest in a porous surface like wood.

Always read the formula’s label carefully. Even pesticide from the best bed bug company  won’t work if it’s not used correctly. Make sure you use it properly so it is effective, and keep in mind that some bedbug sprays may be toxic to pets.

4. Starve Them Out

It’s possible that no matter how much you clean, the bugs will still hide in places you can’t reach, like in the walls or under the carpet.

Fortunately, you can help get rid of hidden bugs by starving them. Make DIY bed bug traps so they won’t be able to reach their source of food: you!

Be careful when building traps, as some materials that are toxic to bed bugs can also be toxic to you. This trap uses carbon dioxide, which, although natural, is harmful to humans in large quantities.

5. Treat Your Pets

Although bed bugs don’t live on the hosts they feed on the way fleas do, bed bugs can still pester your pets.

They may move into pet bedding or stuffed animals. They will need to be treated the same way you treated your own clothes and bedding.

Bed Bug Management Solutions

If you have a relatively minor infestation, these tips should help you fix the problem.

Even if you decide that you need to call an exterminator, doing some DIY bed bug management can help keep the problem from growing in the meantime.

What are your favorite DIY pest control tips? Leave a comment and let us know!

5 Reasons Why Moms Need Life Insurance for Women

life insurance for womenAs a busy mom, life insurance might be the last thing on your list of priorities. Between childcare, making sure the house is livable, and taking some time for yourself every once in awhile, it might already seem like each day needs another twelve hours.

However, whether you’re a working momma or a stay-at-home mom, you need to make sure you have life insurance for women.

Keep reading to find out the top five reasons why.

1. Life Insurance for Women Covers Childcare

It’s no secret that childcare costs are climbing higher every year. If you’re not around, the burden of childcare could fall entirely on your spouse. Odds are they’re going to need some help.

Parents pay an average of $15,895 a year for infant child care at a center. Even if you’re a master of saving money, that long term cost is going to eat away at your savings.

Life insurance would help offset that.

2. It Helps Replace Your Financial Contribution

Working moms are more likely to buy life insurance. But what about the stay-at-home moms who don’t see a reason to set it up?

Don’t sell your contributions short. Stay-at-home moms can save families upwards of $100K a year with all of the services they provide: personal chef, nanny, chauffeur…

Taking out a life insurance policy would help to make sure your family will be able to stay afloat without your six-figure contributions.

3. You Can Leave Your Children Money

What parent doesn’t want to be able to help their children get on their feet as adults?

Outside of the short-term needs your family could have, life insurance for women can help plan for the long-term as well. Even though you wouldn’t be around, you can still give your kids a nest egg to help them get started in life.

4. It Can Help Cover Funeral Expenses

No one really wants to be morbid and think about their own death. But given that funeral expenses can rise into the thousands, it’s the responsible thing to do.

You wouldn’t want to leave your family both upset over their loss and on the hook for a hefty funeral price tag. The last thing anyone wants to do while grieving is scrounge for pennies.

Instead, make sure you have insurance so that they don’t even have to think about where the money will come from.

5. It Makes Sure Your Family Is Prepared

When it comes down to it, you just never know what’s going to happen. After all, no one ever plans for everything to go wrong.

Smart moms will plan for the worst and hope for the best.

A good company will allow for all possible outcomes and offer policies that will help you out no matter what. The best life insurance company in Canada, for example, also offers disability insurance and critical illness insurance among other products.

Want more tips about how to be both frugal and financially prepared? You’re in the right place. Feel free to get in touch or leave a comment below!

Guide: Finding the Best Fitness Program for You

best fitness programAre you ready to finally get in shape?

With all of the fitness programs out there these days, it can be difficult to find the right one for your body and your life.

But don’t worry, this guide will tell you everything you need to know about how to choose the best fitness program for you!

Read on to find out more.

Check in with Yourself First

Before starting any fitness program, have a little check-in with yourself about what’s going on in your life and with your body. This will help to ensure that you are finding the best fitness program for yourself at this stage in your life- and one that you’ll stick with!

Here are some questions to ask yourself before perusing your options.

How Much Time Do I Have to Devote to Fitness?

It’s important to be honest with yourself here.

Do you have a job, a family, friends or hobbies that take up a ton of your time? Answering this question correctly will help you figure out how much time you can devote to a new health and fitness regimen.

What Are My Fitness Goals?

Do you want to tone up your muscles? Concentrate on flexibility? Work toward running a marathon? All of the above?

Whatever your personal fitness goals are, they should be reflected by whichever routine you choose for the best results.

What Kind of Exercise Makes Me Happy?

It’s undeniable- you’ll stick with a fitness program that is fun for you.

Do you like the aggression of kickboxing? The relaxation of yoga? The structure and results of a 12 week shred?

Everyone is different, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Check in with yourself and figure out what you enjoy to ensure that you will have success with your new fitness regimen.

Focus on One Goal at a Time

After you’ve checked in with yourself about your fitness goals and how you can achieve them, make sure that you don’t try to do everything at once.

If you focus on both fat loss and muscle building at the same time, your exercises and nutrition may be working at odds with each other. For example, if you want to lose weight, you need to be burning more calories than you’re eating. But if you want to build muscle, you need to be eating more calories than you’re burning.

Focusing on one goal at a time will no doubt lead you to the best fitness program for the results that you want.

Experiment to Find the Best Fitness Program for You

If you’re unsure of what type of exercise will be the most enjoyable and effective for you, that’s okay.

Before landing on the fitness program that you’ll stick with, try some new things and stick with them for a couple of months at a time. See what you like, and what seems to be working. And when you find it, stick with it!

It’s Time to Get Started!

Now that you know how to choose the best fitness program for you, it’s time to get out and break some sweat. And if you have any questions or thoughts you’d like to share, don’t hesitate to reach out.