Category Archives: Health

Monday Matters health & nutrition 17 October 2016

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The featured artist is Julian Cope – who celebrates is birthday on 21 Oct. He was also lead the singer for the band The Teardrop Explodes.

The first stage of the operation to retake Mosul started. Joint forces will do this from the north, east and south. The west will be left open deliberately, allowing Islamic State fighters a route of escape. It is largely desert in this direction so drones will monitor the terrain and pick off IS fighters as they flee. Mosul is a big city – it is estimated there could be as many as 1.5 million people left inside. Lise Grande is the UN Humanitarian co-ordinator and talks of the issues facing the civilians

Breakfast is seen by many as the most important meal of the day and we have known that many cereal staples, that make up our breakfast, can be full of sugars. Health and nutritionist Amanda Hamilton – who is the UK based spokesperson of a new healthy breakfast cereal called Quinoa Crack – who tells us how we can get a free trial cereal box.

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“Be body aware and approach celebrity surgery trends with caution” says the Plastic Surgery Group

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The trend for cosmetic surgery is ever-growing, even with youngsters who haven’t even had a chance to wrinkle, droop or deflate yet. But while there’s nothing wrong with a little enhancement, rising rates of body dysmorphia and pressures to conform to a certain image could lead to exposure to surgical and psychological risks. With TOWIE’s Jess Wright recently opening up about her boob-job regrets, is it time to better-educate would-be patients?

Last year, more than 50,000 people in the UK underwent cosmetic surgery – something that former BAAPS President Rajiv Grover assigns at least partially to celebrity influence. But whether you’re going under the knife like Jess, or choosing an ‘injectable’ enhancement such as botox or lip fillers, it may pay to listen to the stars before you take the plunge with the scalpel or syringe.

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Jess Wright’s former TOWIE screen mate, Lauren Goodger, also recently stepped back from her previous quest for the perfect pout, posting: “I’ve finally taken that plunge to put it all right #byesho #byefiller” on her Instagram page.

Risks and reasons

Some regrets are more easily remedied than others – so with surgeries and other procedures carrying a number of potential risks, and the possibility that the outcome won’t actually make you happier, how do you make the right decision?

Mo Akhavani, cosmetic specialist at The Plastic Surgery Group says: “A thorough consultation and transparent advice are essential, even if the patient is looking for a seemingly low risk procedure like Botox. Injectables are medicines, so need to be treated with respect – even paracetamol has severe safety risks and that’s available over the counter.”

slide1.jpgAdministered correctly, botox is considered safe, but there’s research to suggest that it crosses over into the central nervous system – and as a relatively new treatment, it’s hard to say what long-term effects may be discovered. There are shorter-term effects to be aware of too, such as the ulcers, inflammation, pain and swelling that can be a by-product of lip fillers.

The prevalence of body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) is also an issue that needs addressing; a 2015 study indicates that between 2.9% and 53.6% of patients requesting cosmetic surgery – and over 1 in 100 UK men and women – suffer with the disorder. Such a broad statistic shows that more research is needed, and also highlights the need for psychological support to be made available to potential patients.

For the 18-35 age group who are frantically racing to keep up with the latest look and celebrity styles, a little surgery doesn’t feel like a big deal. But as Jess Wright laments over her own op: “I was happy with them at first but I was younger – times have changed and fashion has changed”.

Health Breakfast Choices

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Breakfast is seen by many as the most important meal of the day and we have known that many cereal staples, that make up our breakfast, can be full of sugars.

Health and nutritionist Amanda Hamilton – who is the UK based spokesperson of a new healthy breakfast cereal called Quinoa Crack – who tells us how we can get a free trial cereal box.

Messy Bedroom Can Affect Your Weight

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Your mother may have told you to tidy your room, and she was right. Sleep guru Alison Francis, who is better known by her guru name, Anandi confirms the reasoning behind keeping the bedroom free from clutter.

A lack of sleep can come down to a number of contributing factors such as stress and an unbalanced diet.

The bedroom should be a place for sleep and relaxation, however a cluttered or dusty setting will not lead to a good night’s slumber. The feeling of being soothed and refreshed when entering a tidy beautiful space allows the build-up of the day’s stresses to diminish.

Anandi said, “Your bedroom is a sacred space. As soon as you walk across the threshold you should feel the tension melt away. Having scented candles, flowers and something that represents the spirit – such as a small altar with perhaps a crystal, or an image of a great spiritual teacher – can help you relax and sleep better.

“Curing sleep issues is a question of balance and absolutely holistic. One thing on its own is unlikely to work, but addressing all areas in your life will bring your body and mind back into equilibrium.

 

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“Sleep deprivation can affect your weight, in that your metabolism can become out of balance. Two hormones in particular can cause this this to happen – Ghrelin and Leptin. Ghrelin, sends messages that tell you to go and eat and tends to be more present when you are sleep deprived. When there are higher levels of Ghrelin within the body, you will crave more food and in particular, sugar. The hormone Leptin sends messages that tell you to stop eating which is less present when sleep deprived.”

Anandi has written her first book called the ‘Breathe Better, Sleep Better’. It offers many practical tools including how to help detox the digestive system, how to calm the nervous system and how to stimulate your circulatory system.

Anandi’s journey started in the fitness industry in 1986. A born leader and teacher, she found herself teaching others throughout her career in fitness, beauty and wellness. She now lives in Italy and runs workshop and retreats, in Italy and London. Anandi is Alison Francis’s spiritual name given to her by her guru in India in 2007.

Useful links

Anandi: http://www.thesleepguru.co.uk/

 

 

Got that 3 day work feelin’?

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A THREE-DAY-WEEK gets the best performance from workers aged over 40, a study by the University of Melbourne has found called ‘Use It Too Much and Lose It?
The Effect of Working Hours on Cognitive Ability’.

Researchers found the cognitive performance of middle-aged people improved as the working week increased up to 25 hours a week.

However, when the week went over 25 hours, overall performance for the test subjects decreased as “fatigue and stress” took effect.

article-1140673-035C7CCA000005DC-783_468x674.jpgThe report, which was published in the Melbourne Institute Worker Paper series, invited 3,000 men and 3,500 women in Australia to complete a series of cognitive tests while their work habits were analysed.

It was found those working 25 hours a week performed best while those working 55 hours a week showed results worse than retired or unemployed participants.

One of the three authors, Professor Colin McKenzie from Keio University told the Times: “Many countries are going to raise their retirement ages by delaying the age at which people are eligible to start receiving pension benefits. This means that more people continue to work in the later stages of their life.

“The degree of intellectual stimulation may depend on working hours. Work can be a double-edged sword, in that it can stimulate brain activity, but at the same time long working hours can cause fatigue and stress, which potentially damage cognitive functions.

“We point out that differences in working hours are important for maintaining cognitive functioning in middle-aged and elderly adults. This means that, in middle and older age, working part-time could be effective in maintaining cognitive ability.”

The research comes amid moves from July 1, 2017 to increase the qualifying age for Australian Age Pension from 65 to 65 and six months.

The qualifying age will then increase by 6 months every 2 years, reaching 67 years by 1 July 2023.

 

Almost half of us experience a ‘life crisis’

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Almost half of us experience a ‘life crisis’

The Open University urges us to pursue our dreams:

· Unfulfilled dreams and ambitions top list of ‘life crisis’ causes

· A fulfilling career and taking up interests key to overcoming ‘life crisis’

Almost half (44%) of the British public have either had or are going through a ‘life crisis’, a poll recently commissioned by The Open University reveals today. To help people restore their personal balance, The Open University is urging people to discover their ‘Plan P – their ‘Passion Plan’ – and realise their unfulfilled ambitions.

However, it’s not just those midway through their lives who have suffered a ‘life crisis’ and need to re-ignite their passions. Almost a third of those surveyed (29%) have been through a ‘life crisis’ between the ages of 18 and 30, suggesting millennials are particularly susceptible.

When asked what factors caused their ‘life crisis’, a lack of career fulfilment and unfulfilled dreams topped the list. To combat this, 39% said embarking on a new career would help solve their issues and 24% said learning something new would have the same effect.

Whilst over two thirds of those surveyed wish they spent more time pursuing their personal passions, 27% don’t think they have time to do so, with long hours of work and social pressures swallowing up free time. One in ten of those surveyed do not have any personal passions or interests outside of their career, however 41% said that taking up a new interest or hobby would help address their ‘life crisis’.

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As a result, The Open University is today urging people to explore their interests by learning something new or pursuing further study in order to address the issues associated with their ‘life crises’, start realising their ambitions and to discover their ‘Plan P’.

Clare Riding, Head of Careers and Employability Services at The Open University said: “Almost two fifths (39%) of people cited embarking on a new career as a solution to their ‘life crisis’ so whilst finding a career you love can be challenging, it is also deeply rewarding. Taking time to explore your interests, both in and out of work, will help you to realise your career ambitions and will support you in finding the role that’s right for you.”

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Alan Campbell Olympic Rower

Alan Campbell, Olympic rower and Open University student said, “As an athlete there will come a time that you can no longer compete at international standard, so there has to be something beyond sport. Not only this but in a high pressure, competitive career such as elite sport, you need to have other passions that keep your mind alert and focused outside of work. Rio 2016 will be my last Olympics but this isn’t a year of endings for me, it’s a year of beginnings too. I will complete my BA (Hons) in Leadership and Management with The Open University this year and can’t wait to see what new journey this will take me on.”

Reporter Bonnie Britain reports from Coppafeel!

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Monday Matters reporter Bonnie Britain returns with a look at an event aimed at breast cancer awareness called Coppafeel. Boobball is a charity game held in the olympic park and Bonnie managed to get interviews with some of the players. Tom Fletcher from Mcfly, Ashley James, Gaby Roslin, Dan Edgar and Kate Write from TOWIE and Kristin Hallenga all spoke to our Bonnie.

Jeremy Hunt Petition reaches 310,000

Watch Jeremy Hunt squirm as he listens to letters from junior doctors
Watch Jeremy Hunt squirm as he listens to letters from junior doctors

A petition which calls on the Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt to face a vote of “no confidence” has reached more 310,000 signatures.  

The petition which was created by Graham Hillman centres on claims that Mr Hunt is “destroying all staff morale in the NHS & will cause recruitment issues”. 

The momentum behind the signatures comes just days after Mr Hunt was widely criticised for his decision to “unilaterally” impose a new contract on junior doctors which redefines “anti-social” working hours.  However the British Medical Association (BMA) claims an “eleventh hour” offer has been made by the Government and the BMA’s chief negotiator Sir David Dalton will present the offer to their committee in the coming weeks.

Let us hope this offer is one that includes phasing in new contracts which tie into additional resources.

There is not a single person I have spoken to who does not think that the aspiration to 7 days is a good idea. The facts around 11,000 deaths at the weekend have not only been misrepresented but as I commented on before, Mr Hunt (whilst wearing an NHS badge) refused to deny that the deaths were the result of junior doctors not being available at the weekend.  This is a monstrous dereliction of actual facts which are far more complicated than Hunt alludes to.

NHS Strike

Even the NHS’s medical director Prof Sir Bruce Keogh distanced himself from the Health Secretary’s rhetoric by reiterating a view held by many in the healthcare profession that “the weekend effect” cannot be accurately used to measure how many people die avoidably on Saturday or Sunday.

There is no doubt that a move towards 7 days is a good idea and one that will benefit patients in the long run.  BUT if Jeremy Hunt thinks he can bully the health profession into providing a 7 day service by twisting their hours and taking even more from them then he is unbelievably naive.

I personally think that Jeremy Hunt is nothing more than a careerist and political opportunist, of the worst kind, who’s current motive is not to improve our health system but is, in fact, to get this supposed 7 day NHS up and running so he can sit grinning at the cabinet table pontificating about how he has delivered the Prime Minister’s promised  7 days manifesto pledge.

However, at what cost?  The NHS struggles with 5 days.  How can it cope with 7? This change is not being done by adding more resources – but by stretching and pulling the already tight service – to the point where it is already beginning to snap in some places. Jeremy Hunt is putting his political ambitions  ahead of patients and doctors and I think it is shameful.

Jeremy could have had us all on his side by saying that he wanted to create a 7 day service and he will start the process by launching a nationwide recruitment campaign for more doctors and nurses and other healthcare professionals to enable it to happen.  He could of engaged the public and professionals by being seen to do things the right way. However, he didn’t. He isn’t close enough to the Prime Minister or Chancellor to get the funds required.  So instead, he has been forced into spreading the jam over a much bigger piece of toast.  And guess what – there isn’t enough jam…and he knows it.

It is for this reason that I believe Jeremy Hunt is not worthy to continue in his role and why I signed the petition.

The petition can be found by clicking here….

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STOP! Paying for MPs to get Pissed – let’s spend it on the#NHS

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Nothing insenses me more than when a group of experts are bullied into agreeing to something which they know is wrong by a government desparate to make good on a shoddy election promise – on paper rather than practice.

And so today we have a strike by junior doctors who are worried that the terms and conditions they thought they had signed up to when they started their careers – is being ripped up and replaced with a new contract which, in its heart, is about doing more with less, for less.

Having squeezed all the juice from the apple – Mr Hunt and David Cameron are now attempting to squeeze juice from the remaining pips! And it is an utter disgrace.

I have used the NHS alot lately and so understand that it is climbersome, slow and at its best when dealing with life or death emergencies. The rest of us – form an orderly and long queue please.

So, I am all for new ideas and reforms. But they must be sensible and reasoned and funded properly.

Watch Jeremy Hunt squirm as he listens to letters from junior doctors
Watch Jeremy Hunt squirm as he listens to letters from junior doctors

 

This is NOT what we are getting from Jeremy Hunt. His proposals are designed to spread what is currently done over 5 days over 7. Let me tell you – the NHS in some parts is struggling with 5 days – never mind 7.  WE MUST NOT make Doctors pay the price of over funded and bad management of NHS boards.

I am not saying I don’t disagree with the Conservative aspiration of a fully functioning 7 day health system. It is inevitable.

However, where I am very angry with Jermey Hunt is that he is trying to impose this new way of working – without fully resourcing the other bits required to make the new term and conditions feasible and the aspiration achievable.

On the Andrew Marr show on Sunday 7th February Mr Hunt refused to say that Doctors were not responsible for the 11,000 deaths which are supposedly down to the “weekend effect”.

This made me so angry and the reason is – because it is a total LIE. 11,000 people are NOT dying because everyone packs up at 5pm on a Friday evening in the NHS. In fact, it would appear that Wednesay stands accused of being statistically the worst day to be in hospital. Do we avoid getting hit by a Larry on Wednesay the?

The truth is – you find trends in any data which may not accurately reflect the situation – certainly not to allow you to then base a concrete finding upon eg: if we look at those who died on Wednesay – you might find a majortiy white, male, under 6ft, with blonde hair and green eyes. However if you fit that description- and get hit by a car – you are not MORE likely to survive because it’s Tuesday! It will depend on a variety of other factors directly relating to that incident.

But Jeremy Hunt and the Government are trying to skew the statistics to create fear and get the public on their side. That is shameful and unforgivable.

When I think about how much MPs earn and the fact that as well as everything else the tax payer funds them for – just remember – at any point – MPs are getting pissed in the House Of Commons bar – or some other little function and you are subsiding it or paying wholly for it.

Instead of paying for MPs to get pissed – why isn’t that money used to get more Doctors, Nurses and other NHS specialists?

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World Cancer Day 2016

 

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Today is World Cancer Day #WorldCancerDay #WeCanICan

But the good news is that it’s not taking as many of us as 10 years ago…

THE proportion of us dying from cancer has dropped by almost 10% in a decade, a report reveals today.

The study, by Cancer Research UK, shows that in 2013, 284 out of every 100,000 people in the UK died from cancer.

Ten years ago, it was 312 in every 100,000.

The trend is due to improvements in detection, diagnosis and treatments.

A breakdown of the sexes shows men’s death rates have fallen by 12% in the decade, while the drop among women is 8%.

Lung, bowel, breast and prostate cancer cause almost half of all cancer deaths – 46% – in the UK. The combined death rate for these four fell 11% in the past decade.

However, death rates have risen by a huge 60% over the past 10 years for liver cancer and by 8% for pancreatic cancer.

Because people are living longer, the total number of cancer deaths has increased. There were 162,000 deaths from the disease in 2012, compared with 155,000 in 2002.

Around 80% of cancer deaths occur in people aged 65 and over and more than half occur in those aged 75 and older.