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In Step With Our Carbon Footprint

blogphoto_earth_day_kids_earth_globe_hands-504x334 Bedroom Magazine recently posed the question, “What does your company do to reduce your carbon footprint?Below is the response to that question from OMI’s President, Walt Bader:

 “A carbon footprint is actually two footprints. The primary footprint is the total of all direct carbon dioxide emissions you personally produce or are responsible for. During our manufacturing process we produce zero. Even our forklift trucks are electric. Certainly, we contribute when we fly. We do not operate our own delivery services and we own no trucks. Secondarily, we source raw materials as close to our point of manufacturing as possible: wool from California, cotton from Texas, fabrics from the southern United States and all our packaging and materials are manufactured locally.

We completely recycled our scrap, and you would be hard pressed to find a garbage can on the floor. From the outset, OMI has been wholly dedicated to supporting America’s organic farmers, and thoroughly supports both the spirit and goals of reducing carbon footprints throughout the world.”

To learn more about the steps OMI takes to ensure our factory is as efficient as possible, check out our previous blog, Our Dedicated Organic Factory

The Cure for Snoring is…

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When it comes to sleep, many people or their sleeping partners have a problem with snoring. Some have turned to nasal strips, while others experience insomnia. This woman found a different, more homeopathic approach to helping her husband with his snoring habit…singing!

Read more from this article to find out how you too may be able to stop your snoring or that of your sleeping partner

“While there are a number of sophisticated medical treatments available, such as nasal and oral devices as well as surgery, Ojay’s solution is more akin to a natural home remedy. The British choir director claims that a series of routine vocalizations, performed 20 minutes a day over the course of less than a month, can reduce snoring significantly. That’s because these ‘singing exercises,’ she says, were formulated specifically to work out throat muscles that have weakened over time. The approach is based on the premise that firming up these muscles would allow air to pass in and out with less obstruction.”

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/cure-snoring-singing-180949408/

A Look Inside the OMI Duo

Here is an informative video featuring Whitney, OMI’s National Sales Manager, discussing the key features of the OrganicPedic® Duo.

For more information on the Duo mattress, click HERE, or check out our previous blog about the benefits of the Duo Mattress, How Opposites Attract…the Duo.

Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Discovered 1962 Speech

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Today, the day we celebrate the life of our country’s greatest civil rights leader, I hope you have a few minutes to go listen to a new online exhibition featuring the only known recording of Dr. Martin Luther’s King, Jr.’s 1962 speech, now available from the New York State Museum.  The speech commemorated the centennial anniversary of the Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation.

Top 10 Sleep Myths Debunked

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After reading this article from the Huffington Post, I was fascinated to learn that I believed at least 5 of them!

Sleep Myth: Eight hours of sleep is a luxury; six hours is realistic.
Truth: Sleeping should not be treated as a luxury, but as a necessary part of total health. People who get the proper amount of sleep feel better, look better and are overall in better health. This is a major step to enjoying life more. I always tell people that it is hard to enjoy life when you are too fatigued to do what you like.

Sleep Myth: If I don’t get enough sleep at night, I can make up for it with a nap during the day.
Truth: While naps can rejuvenate you enough to get through the day, they are not a permanent solution to sleep deprivation. If you must nap, avoid them after 3 p.m. or you’ll affect your ability to sleep at night, creating a vicious cycle.

Sleep Myth: The weekends are a great time to rest for a long week ahead.
Truth: You can’t “bank” sleep and store it up for the future. Although being well-rested will help you cope a bit better with lost sleep, sluggishness will set in.

Sleep Myth: Hitting the snooze button will give me a few extra minutes of rest I need to feel energized.
Truth: If you’re snoozing, you’re sleep-deprived. Sleep does not come in nine-minute intervals, so be realistic about the time you need to get up. I like hitting the snooze alarm one time and doing light stretching with the light on. This gives you a gentle way to wake up.

Sleep Myth: I’ll learn more if I pull an all-nighter and cram for a test.
Truth: If you pull an all-nighter, your memory may fail you during that big test. It’s during the REM stage of sleep that we consolidate memories from the day before. If we are trying to learn new information and skimp on sleep we won’t remember as much information.

Sleep Myth: If I wake in the middle of the night, I should read a book or watch TV until I become sleepy.
Truth: The bright light from your TV or lamp will only wake you up further.  If you get up at night, go into another room and keep the room dark. I suggest meditating or doing light stretching until you feel ready for sleep again.

Sleep Myth: Exercising near bed time will keep me up at night because I’m too “energized.”
Truth: Exercising near bed time may keep you up at night, but that’s most likely because your body is too hot.  Your core body temperature must cool down before you can have a restful sleep. The optimal time for exercise is four hours before you plan to go to bed.

Sleep Myth: As I get older, my body requires less sleep.
Truth: Research has shown that as we get older we still need the same amount of sleep as when we were younger. In fact, older adults need to spend more time in bed to get the same amount of sleep, thanks to the aches, pains and medications that wake them up at night.

Sleep Myth: Snoring may be annoying, but it’s harmless.
Truth: Habitual snorers can be at risk for serious health problems, including sleep apnea, which can result in high blood pressure and a higher risk of heart attack and stroke. Not to mention the impact that snoring can have on your quality of sleep and that of your sleep partner!

Sleep Myth: Lack of sleep may make me feel tired, but it doesn’t have a severe impact on my health.
Truth: The consequences of even one hour of sleep loss for one night can be an increase in heart attacks. The masses of the sleep-deprived have a higher risk of illness – from heart disease, to Type 2 diabetes, stroke, obesity and depression. 

For the full article click, HERE

To ensure you get a great night of sleep, be sure that you get enough sleep at night, don’t hit that snooze button, avoid watching TV and reading in the middle of the night, be sure to exercise early and remember that all-night study sessions really don’t work.

So here’s to a good night’s sleep and debunking some sleep myths!

New Resolve for the New Year: Seven Resolutions for a Healthier Lifestyle

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With the New Year come New Year’s Resolutions!  The most popular resolutions often have something to do with health as people recommit to a healthy lifestyle in the new year.  Maybe you’ve already been thinking about your resolutions, but if not, we’ve put together seven resolutions to help you lead a more healthful life:

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1.  Graze your way to better health

Making even small changes in your diet can have favorable results for better health.  Keep a diary to track what you eat during the day and review what changes you may need to make.  Choosing organic food is one easy way to help eliminate toxins from your body.

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2.  Boost your physical activity

For some, this might mean starting to train for a marathon; for others, it might mean getting up from the couch more often during commercials. Try some new approaches to see what works best for you.  Try parking your car a little further away, start your day with a few stretches, or dance the night away with your sweetheart.  A few modifications done consistently can develop into beneficial habits.

3.  Sleep well

A good night’s sleep can help restore your body and provide the energy you need for the next day.  Going to bed at a regular time each night can help you sleep better. Perhaps it is time to flip your mattress or invest in a new one.  If you haven’t budgeted for a new mattress, consider starting the new year with a new pillow.  A good pillow may help you sleep better, and may even help those with allergies.  We spend about a third of our lives in bed, so make sure your bed and bedding help promote your health rather than damage it.

4.  Quit smoking

OK, perhaps this falls into the “easier said than done” category.  If you do smoke, try cutting back.  It’s hard to quit cold turkey, so try the gradual approach.  Maybe you pick a day of the week when you won’t smoke, or wait until the afternoon before you have your first cigarette.  If you’re tired of eating sunflower seeds during smoking cessation, try other approaches, such as hypnosis, acupuncture or tai chi to help manage stress.

5.  Stretch your brain cells

Keep your brain active by brushing the dust off an old hobby or by learning something new.  Maybe you took music lessons in your youth but haven’t touched an instrument in years.  Did you learn a foreign language in school, but don’t get a chance to use it?  You may be surprised at how much you have retained.  Stay curious and seek new things to learn.  Try out your skills at crossword puzzles or other games to keep your brain active and healthy.

6.  Expand your social life

Creating positive relationships with others can help your physical and emotional health.  A good social network is a great way to connect with others who may share similar interests or introduce you to new ones.  Try volunteering at a local nonprofit.  Seek out a community center in your area for social gatherings or classes.  Don’t sit on the sidelines…get in the game.

 7.  Visit your doctor

Healthcare has become more affordable for millions of Americans.  Take stock of your current situation by getting a complete physical.  An assessment can help you focus on areas that might need more immediate attention.

By taking even small steps in these areas you can reduce your risk of many ailments and enjoy the journey on the road to a healthier lifestyle.

May the New Year bring you much health & happiness!

Researching GMOs

There has been a lot of talk about GMOs lately, including this from the Organic Consumers Association (OCA):

The GMO "Arctic Apple®"

“The Arctic Apple® provides no health benefit to consumers. No benefit to growers. It’s only “benefit” is that it won’t turn brown when you slice it or bite into it. 

The USDA is set to approve the GMO apple before Christmas. Unless the agency heeds the tens of thousands of consumers, environmentalists and apple growers who are asking for more safety testing. Or at the least, a label?”

To check out the full article, click HERE.
 

I realized I don’t know as much about GMOs as I would like, so I did a little research.  The Non-GMO Project is a great resource for GMO information.  From their website:

imagesGMOs, or “genetically modified organisms,” are plants or animals that have been genetically engineered with DNA from bacteria, viruses or other plants and animals. These experimental combinations of genes from different species cannot occur in nature or in traditional crossbreeding.

“Virtually all commercial GMOs are engineered to withstand direct application of herbicide and/or to produce an insecticide. Despite biotech industry promises, none of the GMO traits currently on the market offer increased yield, drought tolerance, enhanced nutrition, or any other consumer benefit.

Meanwhile, a growing body of evidence connects GMOs with health problems, environmental damage and violation of farmers’ and consumers’ rights.”  (Check out their website for tons of great information.)

If you are unsure of where you stand on the GMO issue, or just want to know what the fight is all about, the best thing you can do is research for yourself.  An informed consumer is the best defense against huge corporations putting profit before people and the environment.

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