Friday, October 26, 2012

How To Invest As You Age

Financial investments should change as you move through the stages of your life. Consider these strategies to make better use of your hard-earned money. During your 30s and 40s: These are years of increasing income and increasing demands for your money, particularly providing for your children. • Life insurance is relatively inexpensive at this stage of your life. Buying a policy also is a way of providing for your family’s future. • 529 plans offer tax-advantaged savings for your children’s education. For details, which vary by state, go to • Annuities can be a good addition to an IRA or 401k retirement account, and usually have tax-deferred options and guaranteed life income. During your 50s: Prepare for a well-funded retirement during these years. • Remove all risks from your retirement plan. Think about a retirement date and your ability to meet that date. Reduce investments in such things as your employer’s company. • Take advantage of slowing expenses. You are at the top of your earning power, and big expenses, like children living at home, are likely reduced. Consider paying off your mortgage or increasing your investments. During your 60s and beyond: This is a time to enjoy the fruits of your labor. • Test living on projected income before stopping work. If your expected retirement income will be 70 percent of your current paycheck, set aside 30 percent now and see what it’s like to live on the rest. Apply for Social Security and Medicare. Visit these sites to help you make important decisions about these programs: and

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Do you Suffer from Chronic Headaches?

Headache pain is one of the top ten reasons for absenteeism in the workplace and schools. The migraine headache strikes 18 percent of women, 6 percent of men and (surprisingly) 8 percent of children. Migraines are throbbing headaches that affect only one side of the head and can be accompanied by vision complications, nausea, and sensitivity to light and sound. The duration of a migraine can last from a few hours to a few days. A variety of foods, the body’s own hormones, and environmental stimuli can trigger migraines. Migraine sufferers should avoid beer, red wine, monosodium glutamate (used liberally in Chinese foods), certain cheeses, yogurt, and smoked fish. Sodium nitrate, found in bacon, cold cuts, and hot dogs is also a known cause. Caffeine and chocolate also may be connected with migraines. Fluctuations in hormones can cause migraines. It can affect men, but it especially affects women during their monthly cycle – possibly due to fluctuations in estrogen and serotonin levels in the body. Sixty percent of female migraine sufferers have them in relation to their monthly cycle. People on long-term prescription medications or painkillers like aspirin and acetaminophen can experience a “boomerang” effect when medications are stopped. The body may go into withdrawal, triggering a massive migraine. A magnesium deficiency may also trigger migraines, and has been correlated to the migraine-like symptoms of early fibromyalgia. Can anything be done for sufferers of migraine headaches? The answer is yes. There are new prescription medications for treatment of migraines, but simpler natural solutions may effectively eliminate or lessen migraine suffering with less cost and side effects. Here are a few suggestions: 1. Watch what you eat. Keep a food diary, and notice the effects of the food listed above. If symptoms appear up to 18 hours after eating, avoid the food. 2. Try the herb “feverfew.” This potent herb reduces the release of serotonin and the production of an inflammatory substance known as prostaglandins. Both of these events in the body are associated with migraines. Taken regularly, it has been shown to prevent future attacks. 3. Take 800 mg. of L-carnitine a day. The amino acid L-carnitine decreases the sensitivity of the body’s nervous system to fluctuating oxygen levels, one of the key migraine triggers. 4. Take a calcium and magnesium supplement daily. These two minerals work in tandem to reduce the duration and severity of migraine attacks.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Resumes Pet Peeves

Finding a new job may be the first step to getting ahead and making more money. One of the biggest roadblocks to your success may be your resume. A resume is a tool to let a potential employer know why you’re the right person for the job. When you’re looking for a job, how you present yourself to a potential employer is critical. Human resources recruiters receive thousands of resumes a year. Typically, they look for a reason to eliminate resumes up front. Here are 10 of the biggest mistakes people make on their resumes: 1. Typo’s, spelling errors, and poor grammar. 2. Missing information (contact information, dates, or inaccurate dates). 3. Lengthy resumes. (Limit to two pages.) 4. Unprofessional email addresses. 5. Poorly formatted. (Use a simple, clean design.) 6. Functional resumes as opposed to chronological resumes. 7. Long, wordy paragraphs. (Use bullet-points.) 8. Unqualified candidates. (Make sure you meet the qualifications.) 9. Personal info unrelated to the job. 10. Use of false or misleading information. Lying about education, dates of employment, or experience.) For valuable information about job seeking tips and resumes, go to