11 Gosselin Controversies We Still Can’t Believe Happened

It’s hard to really grasp just how big of a phenomenon Jon and Kate Plus 8 was. For years, the show was basically required viewing, if only to see what kind of petty fight Jon and Kate would get into that episode. But after the couple split, the show ended, and our source of drama was cut short.

Or so we thought.

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As it turns out, the Gosselin family has remained a source of drama and entertainment until now, even if they don’t mean to be. Kate ended up getting her own show, Kate Plus 8, and then another new show called Kate Plus Date, but it’s the drama that her and Jon caused off screen that really has been grabbing peoples’ attention.

Here are some of the craziest scandals from the Gosselin family.

1. Collin Gosselin Sent Away Without Jon’s Knowledge

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The biggest scandal, in my opinion, happened when Kate decided to send away one of the sextuplets, Collin, because of “behavioral” issues.

“This is a work in progress for him that we’ve sought many specialists help on,” Kate confessed on an episode of Kate Plus 8. “There are changes coming for him. I think it will result in a change of school for him for this upcoming year and beyond that, we’ll see.”

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Kate has never admitted what the diagnosis is, just saying that it’s been a struggle.

“[There’s] a fairly fluid diagnosis of what those needs are,” Kate said at the time. “But he needs to learn certain strategies to help him deal with things. This has been a struggle we’ve had for a very long time, and it’s one I’ve dealt with on my own. I’ve felt very alone in this. By the same token, it’s not something that has only impacted me or him. Our entire family has been impacted.”

Instagram – Kate Gosselin

From the sounds of it, Collin is dealing with some sort of autism, as a source said the stimulation of being on camera was too much for him to handle.

“Kate doesn’t want Collin on camera very much because all the stimulation can be difficult for him,” a source close to the Gosselins said. “Kate decided to send him to a facility because she thought it was best for him. Now it seems that Collin is flourishing, and he’s responding very well to one-on-one instruction. He definitely finds it easier to function and cope better without all the chaos that his home life entails.”

Instagram – Jon Gosselin

Sending your kid away from the family is one thing, and can definitely have its merits depending on the diagnosis. But, ,he craziest part of all this is that it happened without Jon’s knowledge.

“I have an idea where he is but I don’t really know where he is,” Jon told ET. “[Kate] says that Collin is in a special school for special needs kids with behavioral problems. I mean, I ask but she doesn’t tell me. She doesn’t answer any of my texts.”

Instagram – Jon Gosselin

It’s not clear what the custody arrangement between Jon and Kate was at the time, but it sounded like it might be a sole custody situation for Kate. Jon didn’t really understand why Collin had to be sent away, but did acknowledge he can see why some of his siblings might get frustrated with him.

“I could see my kids getting annoyed with that because he’s the smartest and he does this, and he does that, and he always wants it his way,” he said. “He’s very particular, which could be bothersome. But, he’s very loving too. He was a cuddly kid as a baby.”

2. Kate Goes “Broke”

ABC News

Something that really caught peoples’ attention in 2013 was when Kate said she was basically living from paycheck to paycheck.

“I’m living very carefully these days,” the mother-of-eight said, adding that “to not have a reliable income is scary.”

A source close to Gosselin confirmed that she was struggling financially, mainly because she wasn’t filming as frequently as she used to be.

“Kate no longer has the income she once had from the show,” the source said. “The money is running out fast. Private school alone costs about $150,000 a year. She’s let her nursing license lapse and she hasn’t been a nurse in so long anyway.”

It’s possible that the lack of income is what prompted Kate to start her new dating show, but it hasn’t been released how much she’s getting paid to do it.

3. Jon Has An Affair

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Many people figured Kate’s short temper and belittling of Jon is what ultimately ended their marriage – and it may have been – but it probably didn’t help that Jon had a three-month affair with a 23-year-old teacher Deanna Hummel while he and Kate were still married.

Deanna’s brother, Jason, confirmed the affair, and said he was speaking out to protect his sister.

“She’s a nice girl, not a homewrecker,” Jason said. “He is a bad liar. This isn’t healthy for her. But she is refusing to help herself, so here I am trying to help her myself. I hope this clears the air. A lot of the time, it was pretty, um, gross listening to her, you know, um, how do I say this? The walls are thin. Let’s just say that. I mean, no one wants to hear his sister having sex, let alone with a married dude who’s, like, almost twice her age and who has eight kids and a maybe-crazy wife. Ick. Nast.”

Nast indeed, Jason. Nast indeed.

4. Kate Loses Custody of Collin

Instagram – Kate Gosselin

This piece of news was particularly shocking, considering how hard Kate has worked in the past to keep her kids away from Jon. Collin had started appearing on his father’s Instagram page more frequently, as Jon would visit him at his in-patient treatment. When it was coming close to the time that Collin would be released, Jon filed for sole custody of Collin. He believed it was in Collin’s best interest to live with him and not Kate.

The day before the court date, Kate asked for the hearing to be pushed to accommodate her schedule. The court denied her request, but Kate and her lawyer still decided not to show up. Because of their poor judgement call and lack of attendance, the court awarded Jon with custody of Collin.

“Jon won sole physical and sole legal custody of Collin,” a source told Us Weekly. “All other matters were moved to a future court date.”

5. Kate Accuses Jon of “Inappropriate” Relationship With Daughter

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You can put this in the file of “Gross and Terrible Things to Accuse Your Child’s Father Of.” In 2015, Kate and Jon found themselves at the center of a police investigation after Kate filed a report saying that her ex-husband was a drug dealer who was having an “inappropriate” relationship with their daughter Hannah. The complaint also stated that Jon kidnapped Hannah by picking her up from school.

“She just didn’t want to go home. She wasn’t getting out of the car, she just had a fear, and I wasn’t going to discuss it at the end [of the] driveway,” Jon said of the incident. “So, Leah went down, Aiden went down and Joel went down [to the gate of Kate’s house], and then I just texted Kate.”

Instagram – Jon Gosselin

“I’m like, ‘I’m taking Hannah back,’ and of course she flipped out,” he continued. “So, I was like, ‘You know where I live, here’s my address again in case you forgot it. You know you can call me.’ I kept Hannah and she just explained she was really stressed out and all this stuff, so I kept her [at my house] and Kate called the cops and filed a police report against me.”

Instagram – Jon Gosselin

Kate also called police when Jon tried to pick up Hannah from an orthodontist appointment. The two got into a verbal argument, and the police had to break it up.

The Wyomissing Police Department issue this statement on the interaction:

The call came in at 1:10 this afternoon for a verbal domestic argument … over the custody of one of their 13-year-old daughters. No one was arrested and the daughter did go home with the father after she expressed that was her desire to do.

There was a fairly lengthy argument as far as both parents had conflicting versions of a child custody agreement. Basically, both stated something different and we referred the matter over to our county district attorney. The district attorney then reviewed it and … the district attorney’s words were that the order was sufficiently vague to interpret who was supposed to actually have custody today.

Both parents read their version of the order and thought they should have had custody of the child today. So, we referred them back to the court system to try and get clarification from the court system on who’s supposed to have the child on certain days.

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I can’t imagine stooping so low as to claim your child’s father is a drug dealer and having an inappropriate relationship with her, all because she wanted to go home with him instead of her.

6. Jon Goes On A Tirade About Kate

Steve Harvey Show

Jon clearly doesn’t agree with how Kate chooses to live her life, and he made sure everyone knew it in an interview with Philadelphia magazine.

“She tweets everything,” he complained. “To the world, all about my children. I think it’s disgusting and awful. They can’t even have a normal life.”

He also spoke to rumors that he’s “out to get” his ex-wife, and went on a tirade about her that really left jaws on the floor.

“Everyone thinks I’m out to get Kate. I don’t give a f**k!” he said. “What would I get out of it? Everyone knows she’s an asshole, you know what I mean? I don’t have to—she’s proven that! Kate wants to still be on television. She’s now digging into the past, because that’s what sells. Too late, honey. No one gives a f**k, really.”

Tell us how you really feel, Jon.

7. Hannah Chooses To Leave Kate

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As noted when she wanted to stay with her dad and his girlfriend, Colleen, instead of Kate, Hannah has always been partial to Jon. Maybe it’s because he’s not broadcasting their lives on TV, who knows? But Hannah became noticeably absent in her mother’s Instagram posts about the other sextuplets, and began popping up on her dad’s page more frequently.

Instagram – Colleen Conrad

Finally, Jon posted a message that pretty much solidified that Hannah had chosen to live with him full time.

“Congrats Hannah on your first day of school, proud of you,” Jon wrote. “I admire your bravery starting fresh!!! I Love you very much and we have worked really hard to get here. Dedication has really paid off. I’m so happy you integrated yourself into the community, you made friends all summer and now you will grow and graduate with them. I’m honored to be your father!!! Love you, Dad #newbeginnings

Instagram – Colleen Conrad

Hannah has since been in more and more pictures with her dad and Collin, and seems to be happy with her decision to move in with Jon.

8. Kate Sued For Not Paying Marriage Counseling Bill

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In 2011, two years after Jon and Kate announced their divorce, a marriage counseling company came after Kate for an unpaid bill of $10,476. Dr. Sylvia Lafair, the head of the organization suing Kate, said she tried reaching out to the reality star but wasn’t getting a response. This was her next best option.

“There are commitments that people make…and they should be followed through,” she said of Kate’s refusal to pay.

In court, Kate said she never had a contract with the company so she shouldn’t have to pay, but a judge saw it differently. He ordered her to pay the bill in its full amount.

Yikes.

9. Kate Gets Fired From A Coupon Job

After Jon and Kate split, the single mother was looking for ways to make some extra money. She got a job with a site called CouponCabin.com and was blogging about ways to save money. However, the job didn’t even last a year before Kate was publicly fired via an open letter from the company.

A series of recent events have made it clear to me that Kate Gosselin and her contributions do not align with the authenticity which we set out to build almost a decade ago, and that Ms. Gosselin is simply not a good fit with the wonderful team and culture at CouponCabin.

It’s with this that I am writing to inform you of our decision to discontinue Ms. Gosselin’s feature blog on CouponCabin.com. Ms. Gosselin’s contributions garnered both positive attention and criticism, but as always, I respect and appreciate your candid opinions, which often encourage us not to lose sight of our mission — to help YOU save money.

Coupon Cabin

These “recent events” were never exposed, but I’m extremely curious to find out what you need to do in order to get fired from coupon blogging.

10. Collin and Alexis Are Expelled

Instagram – Colleen Conrad

Before Collin was sent away from behavioral problems, he and his sextuplet sister were causing problems at their school. In 2010, it was reported that Collin and Alexis were both expelled from their school after causing numerous disturbances by abusing students and adults alike.

“Both Jon and Kate were sent a letter from the head of school explaining that despite their best efforts, staff had reached a point at which they had to request the children enroll in another program,” a source close to the school said. “Both Alexis and Collin received three full weeks of intensive special treatment to focus their behavior. While the teacher was able to achieve some success, it became apparent to the school that the pair needed intensive assistance to help them with their social, emotional and academic needs.”

Instagram – Kate Gosselin

Kate, however, saw the situation differently. She adamantly denied that two of her kids were expelled from the school, saying that word was never used.

“The school would never use that word,” she said. “[Collin and Alexis] were not expelled. [The school] did not feel like they could meet their needs anymore, so it was decided they should leave, for now.”

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Call a rose by any other name…

11. Jon Doesn’t Pay Child Support

With eight kids between them, it would be fair to assume that some type of child support is paid by either Jon or Kate. However, Jon admitted in 2013 that he doesn’t pay child support since the kids spend time at both his and Kate’s houses.

“[Kate and I] both support [the children] financially because she takes care of school and all that stuff but I take care of the exact same things she takes care of,” he explained. “I buy their own groceries, they have their own groceries at my house, their own bedrooms, their own stuff, it’s doubled.”

Instagram – Kate Gosselin

However, in 2018, it seems this little agreement between the couple was no longer valid, as Kate sued Jon for $132,875 in child support. Kate claimed that Jon breached an “agreement” they had, but Jon’s lawyer pointed out that Kate did “not provide any proof of the language of that agreement,” and said she was asking for an “inappropriate” amount of money.

The outcome of this lawsuit either hasn’t been made public, or hasn’t been settled, but it’s probably safe to say Kate isn’t going to see that money. Kate’s net worth is listed at $200,000, while Jon’s is listed at $10,000.

It’s been 10 years since Jon and Kate announced they were separating, but they never stopped landing in the spotlight.

What’s the craziest Jon and Kate moment you remember?

12 Medical Reasons You’re Always Tired

I lose count of how often I say “I’m tired” every day. It’s generally because I don’t get enough sleep, and I know this, but sometimes I wonder if there are things that impact my energy levels that aren’t related to going to bed late.

If you find yourself oversleeping, it could be a signifier of a larger issue.

“Oversleeping means that you are sleeping for more than 10 hours on a consistent basis,” says Conor Heneghan, PhD, director of research and algorithms at Fitbit. “Oversleeping has been correlated with certain health conditions, such as depression, but it is not a known cause of any health disorders. While irregularities in the body’s sleep clock may play a role in mood, returning to a consistent sleep cycle is a focus area to get the body back on track.”

There are a number of medical conditions that can lead to feeling tired all the time, and you should always consult your doctor if you notice abnormal energy levels are becoming more common.

1. Chronic Pain Condition

If you have a condition like fibromyalgia, hypothyroidism, anemia and rheumatoid arthritis, you need more sleep than someone who does not have those conditions. But, if you don’t know you have this condition, you’re probably not getting adequate sleep to cope.

“People who suffer from conditions that result in fatigue and pain often require more sleep in order for their bodies to properly rest and recover,” says Matthew Ross, co-owner and COO of The Slumber Yard.

2. Depression

Depression can be a big culprit when it comes to being always tired. Depression can often present itself as being tired all the time, not wanting to get out of bed in the morning, or not sleeping well through the night so you’re tired during the day. Consult your doctor if you think you may be depressed.

Some people will try to “self-medicate” their depression through alcohol, but this can lead to further exhaustion.

“Depression, alcohol abuse, and fatigue are very tightly knit,” says Dr. Shah.

3. Anemia

Anemia is generally the most common culprit of someone being over tired. Doctors will generally test for anemia first if you tell them exhaustion is something you’re struggling with, because it can be confirmed or ruled out through a blood test. Anemia is when your blood doesn’t carry enough oxygen through your body, and is usually caused by an iron deficiency.

“When a patient says ‘I’m tired,’ it’s such a broad term and could be so many things, but if someone says ‘I’m tired and feeling a little more short of breath,’ or, ‘I’m having trouble exercising,’ that tends to be anemia,” says Dr. Shah.

4. Food Sensitivity

When you don’t eat well, your body reacts accordingly, and when your body has a sensitivity to certain foods, it can start to become fatigued.

“If you’re eating poorly, especially a lot of processed foods, the gut cells can become a looser, net-like structure instead of a tight structure, and proteins that aren’t supposed to be in our bloodstream leak into our bloodstream, which creates an inflammatory response,” says Dr. Shah.

The inflammatory response can cause moodiness, bloating, and fatigue, and can be caused by sensitivities to foods like dairy and wheat. You can’t really test for food sensitivities (they’re different than allergies,) but keeping a food diary can help pinpoint what is making you feel ill. Once you notice an eating pattern, you can follow an elimination diet to slowly take out potential triggers.

5. Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is when your throat starts to close when you’re sleeping, and is what causes people to snore.

“The brain notices you’re not getting rid of your CO2, and it wakes up really briefly in an alarmed state,” Lisa Shives, MD, director of the Sleep Medicine Center at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine.

Even though it sounds like you’d notice this happening, most people don’t remember the times they wake up at night because the moments are so brief. This means that when you’re exhausted the next day, you really have no clue what caused it.

6. Heart Failure

Your body is smart and will always do what it can to keep your vital organs fully functioning. If you have heart failure, your body can’t always keep up with its own demands, and will divert blood flow from your tissue to your organs. When your muscles aren’t getting the proper amount of blood, you’ll start to notice that normal activities feel like they take much more effort and leave you exhausted.

7. Adrenal Fatigue

Your kidneys struggling to produce certain hormones could be the cause of your constant fatigue. Though it’s difficult to show with lab testing, the hormone imbalance can be caused by stressful situations in your life, lack of sleep, over-exercising, poor diet habits, or alcohol or drug abuse. Your stress hormones can be high, and then your body is left depleted and tired.

“Adrenal fatigue isn’t a Western medicine term, it’s a functional medicine term, and a lot of Western doctors don’t recognize it as a medical [issue],” says Dr. Shah.

8. Hypersomnia

Everyone knows what insomnia is, but hypersomnia is a little less known. This condition is when you’re tired regardless of how much sleep you get. If you always find yourself tired all day despite having slept well the night before, it could be a sign of hypersomnia. Generally this condition appears in the late teen years or early adulthood.

9. Hemochromatosis

Completely opposite from anemia, hemochromatosis is a condition that affects almost 10% of the caucasian population. Hemochromatosis is causes the body to store too much iron, which leads to fatigue, weakness, joint pain, stomach pain, depression, liver disease, heart problems, and diabetes. Those who suffer from hemochromatosis are born with the condition, but the symptoms don’t present themselves until people reach theirs 50s and 60s.

10. Prediabetes or Diabetes

Diabetes causes a high blood glucose level, which can impair your blood circulation and decrease the amount of oxygen your cells need to give you energy. When you have low blood sugar levels, it can also result in feeling fatigued because your body doesn’t have enough fuel to function properly.

11. Infection

If you broach the subject of fatigue or exhaustion with your doctor, he or she will likely test for a chronic infection like Lyme disease or mononucleosis. These infections can present with extreme fatigue, and by getting a proper diagnosis you can begin treatment that will end up helping the symptoms.

12. Oversleeping On Weekend

Sleeping in on the weekends or taking an afternoon nap is so tempting, but the excess sleep could actually be causing you to be more tired during the week. We often see weekends as a time to “catch up” on any sleep we missed during the week, but that’s not really a great idea.

“While the recommended average sleep time for adults is seven to nine hours every night, often we may try to catch up on sleep during the weekends,” Dr. Heneghan says. “Your body will attempt to recover from the effects of sleep deprivation by having “rebound” sleep − typically associated with longer overall sleep time, increased deep and REM sleep, and reaching the REM sleep state more quickly. However, oversleeping can offset your cycle and has been linked to other health risks.”

Being fatigued or always tired can be a signal of something more serious happening in your body, and it’s important to consult your doctor if you notice any irregularities in your sleep patterns.

[H/T: Reader’s Digest]

Do you have issues with constant fatigue?

9 Warning Signs Of Type 2 Diabetes, And How To Prevent It

Diabetes is a scary, yet manageable disease. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are an estimated 30.3 million adults in the United States living with diabetes. Another 84.1 million Americans are living with prediabetes.

Prediabetes means you do not technically have the disease yet, but you have a higher-than-normal blood sugar level and doctors are concerned about the possibility of you developing it. Symptoms for diabetes come on gradually, and often aren’t noticed until the condition is full-blown.

There are some symptoms you can keep an eye out for that tend to indicated diabetes, and always make sure to get in touch with your doctor if you feel there is a medical problem you’re dealing with.

1. Always Thirsty

Yes, it’s good to drink a lot of water, but if you find yourself constantly thirsty to the point where it’s almost insatiable, it could be a sign of type 2 diabetes. Your body loses water when it’s removing excess sugar, which can lead to dehydration if it keeps happening over a long period of time. If you notice that you’re feeling oddly thirsty, it’s something to keep track of.

2. Blurry Vision

When you have type 2 diabetes, your body can’t process sugar the same way it would in a healthy person. This excess of sugar can damage your blood vessels in your eyes, which over time can cause blurry vision in one or both eyes. The blurred vision may be persistent, or it could be sporadic. Without treatment, this blurry vision could lead to permanent vision loss.

3. Frequent Urination

Obviously if you’re taking in more water, you’ll have to pee more, but the urination is your body’s way of expelling the excess sugar that’s in the body. Your kidneys are trying to filter the sugar out of your blood, and will lead to frequent urination. You’ll especially notice that your urination has increased at night.

4. Numbness, Pain, or Tingling of the Extremities

If your blood contains too much sugar, it can affect the way it circulates and also damage the nerves in your body. Generally, people with type 2 diabetes will feel pain or a tingling sensation in their hands and feet. You could also feel complete numbness. The condition, known as neuropathy, will get worse if it’s not treated and can lead to more serious complications.

5. Patches of Dark Skin

It’s important to keep an eye out for dark patches of skin that could be forming on the creases of the neck, armpit, or groin. This condition is known as acanthosis nigricans, and can signify a higher risk of diabetes. Generally, these patches of skin will feel soft and velvety.

6. Always Hungry

People living with diabetes aren’t able to absorb enough glucose from the bloodstream into the body’s cells, which is how the body gets energy from food we eat. The digestive system breaks down the food, which is then used as fuel. If you have diabetes, this fuel is not being fed to the body and can lead to a feeling of constant hungry, no matter when the last time they ate was.

7. Yeast Infections

It’s an uncomfortable subject to broach, but yeast infections or frequent itching can signify type 2 diabetes. Yeast infections are caused by the excess sugar in blood and urine, which provides a breeding ground for the yeast. Generally, these infections occur in moist, warm areas of skin like the mouth, armpits, and genital areas. These infections are usually itchy, and may also burn, be sore, or appear red.

8. Cuts and Wounds Healing Slowly

As we know, increased blood sugar levels can damage the body’s nerves and blood vessels, impairing circulation. When this happens, even the smallest of cuts or wounds can take weeks to heal, and in some cases they can take months. Because of the slow healing, there is also an increased risk of infection.

9. Exhaustion

Sure, we’re all tired, but those with type 2 diabetes may display extreme tiredness due to the insufficient energy being absorbed from the food. Because the sugar can’t move from the bloodstream to the body’s cells, the body is not able to function at a normal alertness level.

Risk Factors

There are some predetermined risk factors for some people, which may lead to an increased chance of diabetes. These include:

  1. Being over the age of 45
  2. Not living an active lifestyle
  3. Having a family history of diabetes
  4. Eating an unhealthy diet
  5. Being overweight
  6. Having polycystic ovary syndrome

Preventing It

As with most diseases, there are ways you can prevent type 2 diabetes. However, genetics may predispose you to it, so these prevention tips are not guaranteed.

  1. Manage your weight: excess body fat stored around the abdomen can increase the body’s resistance to insulin, leading to a higher chance of diabetes
  2. Quit smoking: if you’re a smoker, you have twice the risk of developing type 2 diabetes
  3. Limit processed foods: a healthier diet can help reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes, so limiting the amount of processed and takeout foods is advised.
  4. Exercise regularly: a routine of moderate physical activity can help lower your blood glucose levels, which in turn can help reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
  5. Limit alcohol intake: an increased intake of alcohol can lead to you gaining weight as well as increase your blood pressure, so limiting alcohol consumption is in your best interest.

Type 2 diabetes affects millions of Americans every year, but if you keep track of your health and check in with your doctor regularly, you can help prevent your chance of developing it.

[H/T: Medical News Today, Better Health]

Share this so everyone is aware of the symptoms of type 2 diabetes.

Cooking Frozen Chicken In Your Crockpot Could Be Dangerous

I’m one of those people who thinks that it’s better to overcook your chicken just to be on the safe side. If I have to add a little extra sauce to my dry chicken to guarantee I won’t get salmonella, well then so be it. I’d rather that than being sick.

Using the crockpot is one of my favorite ways to make chicken, but recently I wanted to put frozen chicken in the crockpot and let it cook for the day while I was at work. I told my friend this and she said I should be careful because cooking frozen chicken in the crockpot can be dangerous. I didn’t know what she was talking about, but I decided to look into it. It turns out, she’s right! There are some legitimate concerns when it comes to cooking chicken straight from the freezer using your crockpot.

According to the USDA, there’s a “danger zone,” which is the temperature range that is ideal for harmful bacteria to grow on food. Because you’d be letting the chicken sit on the counter in the crockpot all day thawing, there is a danger that it could contract some of these bacteria.

Leaving food out too long at room temperature can cause bacteria (such as Staphylococcus aureus, Salmonella Enteritidis, Escherichia coli O157:H7, and Campylobacter) to grow to dangerous levels that can cause illness. Bacteria grow most rapidly in the range of temperatures between 40 °F and 140 °F, doubling in number in as little as 20 minutes. This range of temperatures is often called the “Danger Zone.”

Never leave food out of refrigeration over 2 hours. If the temperature is above 90 °F, food should not be left out more than 1 hour.

  • Keep hot food hot—at or above 140 °F. Place cooked food in chafing dishes, preheated steam tables, warming trays, and/or slow cookers.
  • Keep cold food cold—at or below 40 °F. Place food in containers on ice.

If the USDA danger zone isn’t enough to convince you, their guidelines for using a crockpot specifically tel you to thaw meat and poultry beforehand.

Always thaw meat or poultry before putting it into a slow cooker. Choose to make foods with a high moisture content such as chili, soup, stew or spaghetti sauce. If using a commercially frozen slow cooker meal, prepare according to manufacturer’s instructions.

Despite the warnings from the USDA, the actual Crock-Pot company says you can cook chicken from frozen in their product, you just need to make sure you’re adjusting to add more cooking time like you would if you were cooking chicken from frozen in the oven.

“You can cook frozen meat in any Crock-Pot brand product, but suggested cook time may need to be increased,” a representative for Crock-Pot told Today. “We recommend that you refer to your product’s instruction manual as well for specific instructions and guidance.”

And if that wasn’t enough to convince you, Tom Super, SVP of Communications at the National Chicken Council, admits that even he cooks chicken from frozen in his crockpot.

“It is entirely safe to prepare frozen chicken in a slow cooker or crockpot as long are you are familiar with the make and model of the device,” Super told Today.

Quin Patton, a food scientist formerly with PepsiCo, told Today that cooking chicken in a crockpot is safe, so long as you heat it to the proper temperature.

“It is safe to cook a frozen chicken in a slow cooker,” he said. “You just need to make sure the internal temperature gets up to 165 degrees at some point during the cooking process.”

A spokesperson for the USDA does admit that their recommendations err a little more on the side of caution.

“Basically, our recommendations are a little bit more conservative just to make sure everyone is covered,” the spokesperson told Today.

Personally, I’ll be listening to the USDA so I can be as careful as possible to avoid any food-borne illnesses, but for those who are willing to take more of a risk, go ahead and cook your chicken from frozen right in the crock pot!

Do you cook frozen chicken in your crock pot?

14 Scientific Explanations For Weird Body Reactions

Our bodies are pretty quirky. We can’t even being to fathom all the stuff that goes on inside it, but we like to think we have a pretty good grasp on what it does. However, there are a lot of strange bodily reactions that we don’t know the cause of, even though these things happen to us sometimes on a daily basis.

1. Nails Falling Off After Injury

Have you ever stubbed your toe really hard, or had something fall on your toe only for the nail to fall off later? It’s pretty gruesome when you think about it, but what exactly causes that entire nail to come off?

When you stub your toe or jam your finger, you could end up with what’s called a “subungual hematoma,” which mean blood collects under the nail. This is what causes it to look black or purple. If the blood collection gets to be too much, your nail may separate from the nail bed, which causes it to fall off.

2. Crying When You Yawn

We’ve all yawned so hard that our eyes start to water. In fact, it can be pretty awkward if you’re in a public space and it looks like you’re tearing up over something emotional. Although, pretnding to yawn when you’re starting to tear up over something real can be a pretty good cover.

So why the tears?

There are always tears that coat your eyes keeping them wet, and when the build fluid builds up, it gets drained into little openings in the corners of your eyes. But, when you yawn, these little openings can get blocked because of the way your muscles contract, and the fluid has nowhere else to go but down your cheeks!

3. Feet Falling Asleep

The sensation of your foot falling asleep can be both strange and painful. At first it feels numb, then it feels like pins and needles, and then it hurts when it starts to “wake up” again. When you sit on your foot (or even sleep on your arm in the wrong position,) you’re putting pressure on the nerves, which in turn can slow down the blood flow to your limb.

People who are thinner tend to experience this more frequently because they don’t carry as much fat, which can cushion the blood vessels and prevent them from losing blood flow while you sit or sleep on the limb.

4. Joints Cracking After Sitting

Every time my dad used to stand up, you could hear his knees crack. I thought it was so strange because it’s not like he had been doing anything to aggravate them. When I was a kid, I thought it was the sound of the bones breaking. Obviously, I was wrong.

When your joints snap or crack, it’s the release of gas from the space between your joints. The cracking sounds aren’t anything to be alarmed about, unless you also feel pain or experience swelling.

“We say motion is lotion: the more you move, the more your body lubricates itself,”  says Kim L. Stearns, MD, an orthopedic surgeon at Lutheran Hospital in Ohio. “When you’ve been sitting or lying around, fluid in the joints doesn’t move. The more active you are, the more your joints lubricate themselves.”

5. Body Jerking Before You Fall Asleep

I don’t know about you, but I experience this every night! When I’m lying in bed and about to drift off, I suddenly jerk awake and feel like I’m falling. Research hasn’t really been able to find a true reason behind this sensation, but there are some scientific theories that make sense.

One theory is that when your body starts to relax and your heart rate and breathing start to slow down, your body’s method of transitioning is to twitch. Another theory is that your brain is using its fight or flight response. As your muscles relax, the brain thinks you’re actually falling, and sends a message to your muscles to tense up, causing a jerk.

6. Seeing Spots After Camera Flashes

We’ve all fallen victim to an unexpected bright camera flash that leaves you blinking like mad and seeing floating lights or spots. Your brain produces images through signals sent from the photoreceptors at the back of your eyes, and camera flashes can put these photoreceptors into high gear.

“When a camera flash goes off, it’s so bright that it’s overstimulating the photoreceptors,” says Elaine Icban, assistant professor of clinical optometry at the New England College of Optometry. “It takes awhile for those photoreceptors to get back to normal so the eyes see the afterimage of that flash.”

7. Feeling Butterflies In Your Stomach On A Rollercoaster

The drop on a rollercoaster provides an unmistakeable feeling of your stomach landing in your throat. Obviously, that’s not actually happening, but there is some movement going on. The sudden drop can cause some of the more loosely connected organs to shift and move, and one of those organs is your stomach. Your nerves sense this movement and overcompensate a bit. Even though it’s only moved a bit, it feels like your stomach has jumped into your throat.

8. Moles Growing Thick, Long Hair

These hairs may be unsightly, but they’re nothing to worry about. Moles are concentrated clusters of cells that produce pigment in the skin, and sometimes they can end up forming on top of a hair follicle. Because there is hyperpigmentation due to the extra cells, the hair that grows from that follicle can be darker and coarser.

9. Sneezing When Looking At The Sun

Sometimes when you feel a sneeze coming on, people will tell you to look at a bright light or look up at the sun. For some people, this can bring a sneeze on. But why is that, exactly?

“The theory is that the optic nerve, which senses a change in light, is very close to the trigeminal nerve, which controls a sneeze,” says Dr. Amy Rantala, a family medicine physician at Mayo Clinic Health System in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

Going from looking at something dark to something extremely light causes your pupils to rapidly constrict, which can make your body feel like there are irritants in the nose, making it want to sneeze. Not everyone can benefit from looking at the sun to get out a stubborn sneeze though, and there’s no reason as to why some people can and others can’t.

10. Fingers Wrinkling In Water

My mom complained about “dish fingers” all the time, and it wasn’t until I got older that I realized what she meant. When your fingers and toes have been in the water for a long period of time, they start to resemble raisins. When the water gets into your skin, the layers start to swell and your blood vessels constrict. This then causes the upper layers of skin to pull down, which causes those wrinkles.

So why do our bodies do this?

“Evolutionary experts are finding evidence that it may have actually helped humans to grip objects better when in water,” says Dr. Rantala. “People who have nerve damage to their fingers or toes will often not have this same wrinkling of fingers.”

11. Growling Stomach When You’re Hungry

Is there anything more embarrassing when you’re sitting in a meeting or at church and having your stomach growl so loud everyone can hear it? Sometimes I pretend that it was someone else, ignoring that it was very clearly my own stomach. Other times I use it as an excuse to get out of wherever I am if I really don’t want to be there.

My grandmother would tell me that the growling was coming from a tiny monster in my stomach that was getting hungry, and I guess I never really realized how strange that was. It’s clearly not a monster in there, so what’s causing that rumbling?

When your stomach growls, it’s just the stomach walls contracting. The receptors in your stomach will notice a lack of food, and send electrical waves through your stomach and small intestines. The walls squeeze and release, and you get to deal with that unpleasant sound.

12. Eyelids Randomly Twitching

Eye twitches always seem to come at the most awkward times. No, sir, I wasn’t winking at you, I just can’t get my eye to stop twitching! Sometimes the twitches are a one-off, and sometimes they can last a few days. The severity of the twitch can also vary from tiny to a full-on spasm.

Unfortunately, doctors can’t really pinpoint the exact cause.

“We don’t know why this happens exactly but fatigue, caffeine, and stress are common culprits,” says Dr. Rantala. “I often recommend trying to stretch the muscle that is twitching.”

13. Goosebumps When You’re Scared

There’s a reason those kids books were called Goosebumps. When you’re scared, your adrenaline starts pumping and gets released into your body. The influx of adrenaline signals the tiny muscles at the base of your hair follicles to contract, which then causes them to stand on end.

But…why?

It all goes back to evolution. Our animal ancestors needed goosebumps for survival. By standing the hair on their bodies on end, they could stay more insulated in colder weather, and even appear larger to predators when they were in danger.

To us? Useless. To them? Life-changing.

14. Getting Hiccups After Eating Quickly

Raise your hand if you’ve ever been so hungry you inhaled your food, barely chewing it. I’d be willing to guess that you also got a pretty bad case of the hiccups right after that, too. Hiccups are caused when the diaphragm, a sheet of muscle above the stomach, is irritated. Every time you breathe, your diaphragm contracts, and if you eat too fast, your stomach swells and can cause these contractions as well. This is why holding your breath is often a common remedy to hiccups. It allows your diaphragm to get back into its normal rhythm.

[h/t: Reader’s Digest]

How many of these explanations did you know?

All The Details On Build-A-Bear’s “Pay Your Age” Event

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This article was written by Jamie Westbrook. He is a professional researcher for the CBD Awareness Project. When he’s not working, he likes hiking and bird-watching.When it comes to getting a good night’s sleep, most people will try just about anything. Chances are that if you are someone who struggles to sleep at night, you’ve thought about trying CBD. However, it can be hard to figure out exactly what you need to take

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New York State Set To Ban Declawing Cats

I love my cats like I love my kids, and the thought of doing anything to harm them is unfathomable. I’ll admit, I really do hate cutting their nails, but I would never consider declawing them. While it would be more convenient for me, it wouldn’t be fair to the cat.

Declawing has already been banned in Germany and other parts of Europe, as well as cities in the states like Los Angeles and Denver. That being said, New York state is gearing up to be the first state to outlaw the procedure, which PETA claims is “traumatic.”

“Declawing is a violent, invasive, painful, and unnecessary mutilation that involves 10 separate amputations – not just of cats’ nails but of their joints as well,” PETA writes on its website. “Declawing is both painful and traumatic, and it was been outlawed in Germany and other parts of Europe as a form of cruelty.”

New York State Assembly member Linda Rosenthal is the main sponsor of this bill, and has proposed similar laws in the past since 2015. This law passed state legislature, and now all it needs is a sign-off from Governor Andrew Cuomo. Rosenthal says pet owners who use the procedure for convenience are about to lose that option.

“Declawing a cat is not like getting a mani/pedi, it’s a brutal surgical procedure that involves removing the first bone of the cat’s toe and part of the tendons and muscles,” Rosenthal said in a statement. “Now that New York is poised to become the first state in the nation to ban cat declawing, the days when this procedure is cavalierly offered for the convenience of the owners to protect couches and curtain are numbered.”

While to you and I this law seems logical, the New York State Veterinary Medical Society opposes the legislation, saying that there are legitimate reasons to declaw a cat.

“Many doctors direct that their patients have their cats declawed when they are immuno-compromised, diabetic, hemophiliac, on immune suppressing medication, and for various other medical reasons,” NYSVMS said in a statement. “NYSVMS believes a veterinarian, as a licensed medical professional with the education and knowledge to safely perform medical procedures on animals, should be permitted to make medical decisions after direct consultation with a client and a thorough examination of the patient and its home circumstances.”

The legislation tabled by Rosenthal does take these exceptions into account, saying that declawing for “therapeutic purposes” like an illness, infection, disease, injury, or condition that could compromise the cat’s health would still be an option. However, those who violate the declawing ban not for any of these reasons could face up to $1,000 in fines.

Personally, I think this bill is a long time coming. If you are not prepared to own an animal and care for them, you shouldn’t take on that responsibility.

What do you think about this law? Should all states ban the declawing of cats?

8 Mistakes You Make When Brushing Your Teeth

Brushing your teeth is easy, right? We’ve been doing it since we were kids, and there’s really no trick to it. Or at least that’s what we thought. It turns out, there are some things we’re all doing that could be affecting the effectiveness of our brushing, and in the long run that could come back to bite us (pun only slightly intended).

Take a look at some of the most common brushing mistakes and see if you’re committing any of them!

1. Too Much Pressure

The harder you brush, the better it is, right? Wrong. According to Matt Messina, a dentist from Ohio, brushing your teeth too hard doesn’t really accomplish anything.

“I think one of the biggest issues that people have is that they try to scrub their teeth too hard. They feel like if they really don’t go at the teeth, like they’re trying to clean the grout in their bathroom tile, that they’re not doing the right job,” says Messina. “The best way to fix this is to take away the mental issue of ‘scrub’ and ‘scrub brush’ and replace it with the word ‘massage.’”

2. You Don’t Replace Your Brush

If the only time you’re replacing your toothbrush is when you go see the dentist, then you’re certainly not replacing it as frequently as you should be. Sure, you might love the way it works or how it feels, but after three months, you should be heading to the store to get a new toothbrush.

Of course, if your bristles are frayed, the color has changed, or the brush looks in any way dirty, you should be replacing it far before three months.

3. Wrong Tooth Brush

There are so many toothbrush options at the store, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and just pick whichever is cheaper. However, dentist Kimberly Harms says that you should be looking at a myriad of things, such as length of the bristles, size of the head, and how it reaches your gums. Whether it’s manual or electric, that’s really up to you, but Harms says there’s one thing you must have.

“The one thing that we really insist upon — it’s very important — is it has to have soft bristles,” she says. “The bristles need to be able to bend, to kind of get right under that gum.”

Dentist Maricelle Abayon agrees with this statement.

“Sometimes people think that the harder the bristles are, the more they’ll clean. But that’s not something that’s necessarily true,” says Abayon. “Soft bristles clean very effectively, more than the hard bristles. The hard bristles actually can wear down your tooth structure.”

4. You Go Side To Side

The motions of brushing your teeth seems pretty straightforward, but in fact, it’s the opposite. When you’re brushing, you should avoid going side to side, according to dentist Sangeeta Gajendra.

“In fact, you can do damage,” she says. “Start from the gum, and go up and down.”

5. You Rush

Brushing should last at least two minutes each time, and that should be happening twice a day. But we’re definitely all guilty of cutting that time short when we’re trying to rush out the door (or to bed).

“We used to suggest, back in the day, we’d talk about using an egg timer or something like that,” Messina says. “But everybody has this wonderful thing on their body all the time now called a cell phone. If you want to set a timer and set it for 2 minutes, that’s great.

Messina has another suggestion, too.

“I see a lot of young people walking around with headphones on,” she says. “If you can leave your headphones in and put on a song, your average pop song’s in the 2-3 minute range. So if you brush while you listen to one of your favorite songs, you’ve probably been in there long enough.”

6. You Hurry

When you eat something sickeningly sweet, your first instinct is generally to hurry and brush your teeth. While you may think you’re helping by getting that sugar out of your mouth quickly, you could actually be helping it harm your teeth.

“You have the acid sitting in your mouth and now you’re using abrasives,” says Seattle dentist Andy Marashi. “So you’re kind of helping the acid erode away your tooth.”

Marashi suggests waiting 15 to 20 minutes after a sugary snack to brush your teeth so your saliva can do its job before you start brushing.

“Or rinse out your mouth with some water, to get rid of some of that acid before you brush,” he says.

7. You Ignore The Gums & Tongue

It’s called a tooth brush, not a gum brush, so people often forget that the gums are just as important to care for, considering that’s where a lot of bacteria hangs out.

“You have about a millimeter of gum tissue where your tooth comes outside your gum, you want to kind of get under there, just about a millimeter, maybe 2 or 3 millimeters, right under the gum,” Harms says. “So the bristle needs to be able to bend.”

Hans Malstrom, a dentist from Rochester, New York, agrees with Harms, and has something recommendations on how to help.

“We spend more time on the chewing surface and we don’t really get down on the gum line,” says Malmstrom. “That’s one of the most common things — they don’t brush along the gum line. We normally recommend to angle the brush at a 45-degree angle against the gumline.”

Marashi also reminds people to brush their tongue, as weird as that may sound.

“Most people don’t brush the tongue side of the teeth,” says Marashi. “It’s very easy to tell. You get a line of inflammation. Not to mention the debris that sits there and becomes what we call calculus.”

8. You Slack

Yes, brushing your teeth is a lot of effort when done properly, but chances are you’d rather have a full set of clean teeth than a mouth full of raggedy rotten ones. You need to brush twice a day for at least two minutes, and at least one of those times needs to be “exceptional.” Brush, floss, use mouthwash, the whole shebang.

“As long as we go in and stir up the bacteria once every 24 hours, we can keep them less productive and less dangerous,” Messina says. “Once a day, a  good thorough brushing-flossing-rinsing does wonders.”

So there you have it. Eight things we’re probably all doing wrong when brushing our teeth. Who would have thought?

[H/T: WebMD]

How many of these things are you doing?

10 Mistakes You Make When Weighing Yourself

If you’re trying to lose weight, then you’ve most likely stepped on the scale in the last few weeks. It can be a discouraging if you don’t see the numbers move, but it can also be a great feeling once you see them go down. The thing is, the scale isn’t really the best way to gauge weight loss. Sure, you see the numbers, but you can gain muscle or have your body composition change, and that doesn’t show up on the scale.

Weighing yourself is an important part of most diet and exercise routines, but a lot of people are making mistakes when it comes to stepping on the scale. These are some common mistakes people are doing when weighing themselves.

1. You’re weighing yourself every day.

When you weigh yourself every day, you can make yourself anxious and develop an unhealthy relationship with the scale. Obsessively weighing yourself doesn’t give you the whole picture in terms of what’s going on in your body, and it can end up stressing you out. When you’re stressed, your body develops the hormone called cortisol. Unfortunately, cortisol leads to an increase in cravings of sugar and fat, so weighing yourself every day could actually harm your weight loss journey.

2. You’re using a digital scale.

Digital scales are the most common and arguably most convenient ones on the market. The issue with digital scales, however, is that their accuracy can be very skewed. Moving your digital scale even a little bit can cause it to become uncalibrated. Chances are, you’re not calibrating it every morning, so your scale will most likely be inaccurate. If you want an extremely accurate reading of your weight, it’s best to use the professional scales you see at a doctor’s office.

3. You’re not taking the weather into account.

Yes, the weather can affect your weight, or more specifically, your scale. Digital scales tend to read heavier in colder weather and when there are high levels of humidity. In fact, one study showed that there can be as much as a 3.4lb difference in weight readings depending solely on the temperature. So the next time there’s a cold spike or a heat wave and you step in the scale, just remember to keep that in mind.

4. You’re weighing yourself at night.

Perhaps you’re someone who likes to step on the scale after your evening shower and bed time routine. If this is the case, it might be time to switch things up. When you step on the scale at night, your weight is undoubtedly going to be higher. You’ve eaten at least 3 meals that day plus taken in fluids. You can gain between 6 and 8lbs in a day just based on natural variabilities, so it’s best to weigh yourself in the morning before you get on with your day.

5. You’re weighing yourself after you shower.

A lot of people have a morning routine which involves showering, and I’m sure there are also a lot of people who include weighing themselves in that routine. The issue is that some people weight themselves after the shower, and that’s not a good idea.

“Your skin is the largest organ in the body and absorbs fluid easily,” says Dr. Keith Kantor, a leading nutritionist and CEO of the Nutritional Addiction Mitigation Eating and Drinking (NAMED) program. “After a swim or a shower, your body can absorb 1 to 3 cups of water, increasing your true weight by a few pounds.”

Plus, if you have long hair like me, it’s going to be a lot heavier when it’s wet.

6. You’re weighing yourself after a workout.

Stepping on the scale after a workout makes sense, in theory. You’ve just burned off some calories, so clearly you’ve lost weight, right? Not quite. Yes, the number on your scale might have gone down, but that’s because you were sweating during your workout. For every 16oz of sweat your lose, you’ll lose 1lb. A better way to gauge the effectiveness of your workout in regards to weight loss is checking the next morning. That will give you a more accurate depiction.

7. You’re using different scales.

Maybe you’ve got a few different scales in the bathroom, or maybe you’re alternating between your scale at home and a scale at the gym. Either way, different scales will give you different readings, and it could start to mess with your head. Different scales can have a difference of between 5 and 10lbs, which if you’re trying to track weight loss, can be discouraging. Stick with one scale for consistency’s sake, so you’ll be able to see relative results based off one set of readings.

8. You’re weighing yourself around your period.

Flickr – TORLEY

Ladies, you probably already know this, but it’s worth mentioning. When you’re PMSing, you retain water and it can affect your weight.

“Women retain more fluid right before their menstrual cycle starts,” says Kantor. “There is a lot of fluid retention that can influence weight gain by up to 7 to 8 pounds.”

Plus, let’s not forget the extra snacks we tend to eat. Take a break from the scale during your time of the month.

9. Your scale is in the wrong place.

Unfortunately, even though they’re called bathroom scales, putting your scale on the bathroom floor can be causing it to read incorrectly.

“If a scale is on carpet, uneven tile, or wood it can also appear to be calibrated poorly,” says Kantor.

Your scale needs to be on a hard, flat surface for accurate read outs. If your bathroom tile is level, then keep doing what you’re doing, but if it’s not then it might be time to find a different place in the house to leave the scale!

10. You’re wearing clothes.

Some people don’t feel comfortable in the nude, and that’s totally fine, but it means that your scale readings will be higher than what you actually weigh. If you’re going to weigh yourself at the gym, make sure your shoes are off and that you’re wearing very lightweight clothes. If you’re weighing yourself at home, try and do it with as little clothing as possible, if any at all. Also, if you are going to wear clothes during a weigh-in, try and wear the same outfit every time so that you know you’re getting consistent results.

There are multiple reasons why the scale isn’t the most accurate way to indicate weight loss, and these are some of the mistakes to prove it.

How often do you weigh yourself?