Taking Responsibility for Your Retirement Fund
Relying on pension funds and Social Security is no longer sufficient when planning for retirement. To help, the IRS has published the following tips to help you take charge of saving for retirement:
- Set a goal: Even if you can only save a small amount, setting aside money each month will get you in the habit of saving.
- Open an Individual Retirement Arrangement (IRA): Most Americans can open and make tax-deferred contributions to an IRA.
- Learn about your employer’s retirement plan: If you’re covered under your employer’s retirement plan, be sure to ask for your copy of the summary plan description to learn about your rights under the plan.
- Review your benefits statement: Your plan administrator can provide you with a benefits statement, which details your total plan benefits and the amount vested.
- Sign up for 401(k) contributions: If your employer offers a 401(k), you can select how much money you want taken out of each paycheck to be put into this account.
- Take your minimum distributions: If you’re 70 1/2 years old, you’re generally required to receive a minimum amount from your qualified retirement plan or IRA.
- Estimate your Social Security benefits: Use the Social Security Administration’s calculator to do so.
- Learn about your spouse’s retirement plan: Many plans provide spousal benefits. Be sure to read the plan’s details to see if you are eligible.
Green Tea–More Than Just A Drink?
Recent studies have found a link between EGCG, a compound found in green tea, and increased brain functionality in areas associated with working memory. Mara Dierssen, a Group Leader at the CRG-Center for Genomic Regulation in Spain, decided to look into this link to see if EGCG could reduce some of the cognitive symptoms of Down syndrome.
Dierssen found that individuals in the study who were given EGCG exhibited higher results in visual memory, the ability to control responses, and the ability to plan or make calculations. Although it is too early to make concrete conclusions, these initial results have prompted plans for further studies.
Additional research is being conducted to see if EGCG has any beneficial effects on treating diseases like dementia and Alzheimer’s. EGCG and its effects are an emerging area of study, so you can expect to hear more on this topic in the future.