Ancestry – Native American Genealogy & DNA Testing

by Ginger Marin

Today, there are 561 officially recognized Indian tribes in the United States. For many Native Americans, family history is something they want to explore. Finding out which tribe their families belonged to, its traditions and the impact on their daily lives is important to them and there are resources available to assist you in your search.

Bureau of Indian Affairs

The Bureau of Indian Affairs is perhaps the largest database of records and histories of Native American tribes in the country, especially for Indians who retained their tribal status. You’ll find information such as pay rolls, annual tribal census data, and data about Indians who lived on reservations between 1830 to 1940. The Bureau keeps records and provides Native Americans with information to assist them in tracing their roots.

National Archives

While the National Archives do not assist people individually in tracing their roots, they do provide a resource for those willing to do their own research. You’ll find family background information such as blood types, gender, family names, residence, and even occupation. This kind of information can be invaluable for people looking to research their own Native American genealogy, or that of others.

Census Bureau

Census records are another helpful means of researching Native American genealogy. However, since there were so many different tribes, and because many of the tribes moved about the country, tracking their beginnings and whereabouts is difficult. The process of tracing Native American genealogy can be extremely time consuming, and sometimes near impossible so many organizations will not assist people specifically, but rather they will provide the information so that you can sift through it yourself. It’s really up to the individual to use the resources that are available and do your own legwork.

The DNA Trace

Scientists can trace genetics, family histories, where people have traveled, and how the tribes eventually came to split up into different groups. This information is absolutely invaluable in discovering how Native American people formed languages, cultures, and families. By studying Native American DNA, genetic family trees and various types of people can be traced. Their history, time line, and population can all be studied. For those who feel they have Native American heritage, or come from a long line of tribal families, DNA testing can help to determine their genetic background in relation to the Native American genes.

Although this testing can help people learn more about their lineage, the modern tribes of today usually require that people have at least one grandparent or great-grandparent who was Native American. If people cannot prove this, regardless of DNA testing, many tribes will reject them nonetheless.

Many people are just truly interested in their family’s heritage and background, and may also want to know for health related reasons. Some people are interested in the benefits that are available from the government and in being able to become part of a tribe recognized by the government. Other people just want to know about their past and where they came from, along with their family histories and traditions. (originally written for thewildwest.org)

Affiliate Marketing: Information For Advertisers and Publishers

by Ginger Marin

Affiliate Marketing, also called Performance Marketing, is one way to add passive income to your website if you’re a publisher. And, if you’re a merchant, it can be an effective customer acquisition tool. This is not the same as pay-per-click, but rather, it’s a pay-per-transaction program.

Advertisers
An advertiser, also known as a merchant or retailer, is a web site or company that sells a product or service online, accepts payments and fulfills orders. Advertisers partner with publishers to help promote their products and services. Publishers place advertisers’ ads, text links, or product links on their websites or include them in e-mail campaigns and search listings in exchange for commissions on leads or sales. As an online merchant, you decide the commission structure to pay and only pay when results come in. That means, you pay only when a sale has been made, or a lead provided if that’s what you’re offering.

When you join an affiliate marketing company, you will have to establish an account and make a deposit to cover potential sales. The amount of this deposit varies by marketing company, which tracks the sales and commissions earned by your affiliates. They will consolidate the commissions and pay the affiliate for you out of money in your account, which you must replenish as payments are made.

In all cases, you have a say in which affiliate you will approve or deny, based on your own criteria, such as for websites of a certain caliber, category of website, etc. Or you may prefer to have automatic sign-ups, taking anyone interested in your product or service. It’s up to you.

Publishers
A publisher, also known as an affiliate or reseller, is an independent party that promotes products and services of an advertiser in exchange for a commission on leads or sales. A publisher displays an advertiser’s ads, text links, or product links on their Web site, in e-mail campaigns, or in search listings. The publisher is paid a commission by the respective advertiser when a visitor takes a specific action such as filling out a form, subscribing to a service (lead examples) or making a purchase (a sale).

Upon registering with an affiliate marketing company, you decide which merchants to promote and how to promote them. Some advertisers will readily accept you; others may not. It depends upon the preferences of the merchant.

In your account, you’ll be able to view stats, showing when commissions are generated or even if someone has clicked on your ad and you usually have the choice of posting a text link or banner ad. You can also see your stats in real-time. Commissions are consolidated from the programs you participate in, and you are paid with one check or direct deposit when you reach a certain payment level, as outlined by the marketing company. You can join and quit programs based on how well they perform on your site.

Affiliate Marketing Companies

Here are three top affiliate marketing companies. There are many more out there for you to consider. Be aware, though, many don’t generally allow you to view a list of merchants or publishers before you actually sign up for an account.

Shareasale.com: This is a very easy to use program that’s fair to the publisher with generally fast stats updating. It has a decent and varied list of merchants from which publishers may choose. It is less expensive for merchants to start an account than using Commission Junction.

Commission Junction – cj.com: This is a very well known affiliate marketing company with a number of integrated programs for Merchants. Some higher end merchants can be found here. It is, however, less friendly to publishers who can lose their entire commissions to “fees” or have their accounts suspended and/or deleted if actual sales aren’t generated within a set amount of time, even though a publisher has generated thousands of clicks and potential clients for an advertiser.

Linkshare.com: This company more recently changed its back-end stats area and it was not as easy to use as Shareasale. However, you can find some good merchants here. It offers merchants varying levels of service.

If you’re a merchant, you’ll simply have to weigh the costs of the various programs to see what works best for you. For publishers you should look for ease of use, commissions paid, types of advertisers available to you.

Hormones – An Overview For Anti-Aging & Brain Health

by Ginger Marin

Hormones are the body’s messengers which transport important information back and forth from the brain to the various glands and cells. They serve to rejuvenate, regenerate and restore our bodies, but, they are often overlooked when it comes to the proper functioning of the body.

Here’s a quick look at the function of the primary hormones in the human body. As you peruse the list, you’ll see that many are engaged in proper functioning of the brain. The health of the brain cannot be separated from health of the body; both interact, and to ignore one is to limit the success of the other. People looking for real health and, especially anti-aging protocols, must look to their hormones and work toward a proper balancing act. That can be accomplished with hormone testing under the guidance of a endocrinologist or anti-aging physician.

CORTISOL – stress hormone

Responsible for responding to stress
Helps protect you against your environment (allergens)
Mobilizes energy, improves fatigue
Increases your appetite for sugar
Decreases bone mass, muscle mass, and slows down your metabolism

DHEA – the mother hormone

Improves neurological function
Increases sense of well being
Improves immune function
Improves stress tolerance
Increases metabolism

ESTROGENS – primary female hormone

Protects against heart disease, stroke
Decreases cholesterol
Lowers incidence of Alzheimer’s
Improves memory
Alleviates symptoms of menopause: headaches, mood swings, bloating, hot flashes, fatigue, waning or lost libido

HUMAN GROWTH HORMONE – the growth hormone

Decreases body fat
Increases muscle mass
Improves tissue healing and protein synthesis
Increases bone density
Quicker illness recovery
Increases capacity to exercise
Increases skin hydration and elasticity
Improves sense of well being
Decreases incidence of illness

INSULIN – storage hormone

Responsible for getting blood sugar into all cells
Increases fat storage
Increases risk of diabetes, hypertension and stroke

MELATONIN – sleep hormone

Responsible for maintaining sleep
Helps alleviate “jet-lag”
Improves mood
Improves the immune system (by decreasing cortisol)

PREGNENELONE – gateway hormone

Promotes formation of other hormones
Repairs brain and nerve tissue
Enhances many brain functions
Reduces aging skin
Improves sense of well being
Increases energy and mobility
Improves sleep quality
Reduces harmful stress effects
Reduces aging brain deficiencies

PROGESTERONE – primary female hormone/pregnancy hormone

Protects against breast and uterine cancer
Protects against fibrocystic disease
Helps fat metabolism
Helps normalize blood sugar
Helps reverse osteoporosis
Helps thyroid hormone function
Acts as a natural antidepressant
Protects against nervousness
Protects against anxiety and irritability

TESTOSTERONE – primary male hormone

Improves brain function
Increases energy
Increases strength
Increases bone density
Increases libido
Improves sexual sensitivity
Improves sexual function
Improves HDL and LDL levels
Improves cardiovascular health

THYROID – metabolism hormone

Increases energy
Increases fat burning, and controls weight
Increases your heart rate
Increases your appetite
Aids cognition
Protects against depression and dementia

Menopause & Andropause: Decline in Female and Male Hormones

Menopause has usually been associated with the onset of hot flashes, sweating, mood swings, depression, metabolic problems, and the risk for Alzheimer’s Disease, heart attacks and bone fractures. Additionally this hormone deficiency can result in a change in the psyche with mental fatigue, lack of focus, decreased attention span, increased irritability, decreased ability to recall both recent and long term memory and the ability to learn new information.

These symptoms have been primarily associated with the progressive decrease in the body’s production of Estrogens and Progesterone. What we now know is that the female body also needs those hormones that have traditionally been associated with the male; testosterone, dihydrotestosterone, DHEA and others for many of the same reasons that males do.

In Anti-Aging Medicine, testosterone deficiency is known as Andropause, the male counterpart to Menopause in females. Just as effected women are with the decline of estrogen and progesterone, males experience a similar more surreptitious process that leads to a decline in male characteristics. In addition to the common physical symptoms related to low testosterone such as decreased sex drive and erectile dysfunction (ED), men also may have symptoms similar to those seen during menopause in women: hot flashes, increased irritability, inability to concentrate, depression.

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