Category Archives: Health

Losing Weight and Eating Healthy while on a Budget

Losing Weight and Eating Healthy while on a Budget

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Anyone who wants to lose weight or lose the belly fat must perfectly understand that to achieve that goal, diet and exercise should go together. Not just one, but both. But given our modern trying times, another key factor comes into the picture: budget. And honestly, it plays a very big role in your goal plan, especially if one adopts frugal living as a lifestyle.

While researching diet plans and weight loss techniques over the internet, I have found numerous articles that encourage dieters to eat high-protein meat like turkey, red meat, or salmon. Consume healthy unsaturated or monosaturated fat that can be found in avocado, olive oil, almonds, sunflower seeds, and the list goes on. Eat green vegetables like lettuce, celery, cauliflower and the list goes on. And every time I go to the supermarket, the prices for these diet foods are very expensive. Yikes!

As for the exercises, the famous action plan for dieters is to hit the gym. Most gyms require membership fees that do hurt the budget too.

So what do frugal livers do?

Start with the Right Mind

I think it starts with the mind. Why do you want to lose weight or your belly fat? Determine what motivates you, and create a mantra for it. Say it to yourself over and over again. While trying not to eat your favorite unhealthy food, say that mantra. When you get tired and your knees already hurt from too much exercise, say that mantra. If your motivation is weak, chances are you’ll be ditching your goals sooner than later.

Every body is Unique, Your Body is Unique

Listen to your body. Which time of the day do you feel most hungry? In spite of all the diet and exercise, why am I not losing pounds? How do I stop myself from grabbing another cup of rice, or ordering another round of drinks? And why do I eat less but gain weight and fat so fast? When you determine the answers to the questions above, then likely you’ll adjust your eating habits, self-control, and again, motivation.

Eating the Right Food

Now here comes the food part. Yummy, but in dieting, the word is sacrifice. Though it requires a lot of sacrifice, it does not have to be sad or deprived. Studies show that skinny people enjoy their food and do not gain weight easily because they savor it and chew it properly, before grabbing another. So try to enjoy your food on the table, and not devour it. And make sure to eat the right food. Right. Food. Set out a diet plan that is budget-friendly.

Eat oatmeal or whole wheat bread for snacks.

Eat less rice, hence you can save money.

Drink lots of water, it is cheap.

Eat a lot, and I mean a lot of fruits and vegetables. Eating a lot of it does not harm the weighing scale, even so, is more healthy and beneficial for your weigh loss goal. Fruits can be expensive, so try buying them in the market where the price is still within supplier price. Apples, mangoes, banana, are good options for breakfast or dinner. Then you can eat rice on your lunch. Or whatever makes you comfortable. I can not stress enough the importance of fruits in a diet plan, because it is highly recommended. I think it is one of diet techniques that is mostly ignored or overlooked. Fruits help flush the fat from your body, make you less hungry often, and do not make you feel bloated.

Avoid oily food, you don’t want to add more fat in your body.

Ditch the soda and other high sugar-content juices. Drink green tea, or hot water with lemon.

Here comes the hard part. Ditch the junk food and fast food. They contain a lot of salt, preservatives, and monosodium glutamate. When salt content enters the body, it retains water in the body which in effect, can make body look bulgy. They contain a lot of carbs too.

Exercise: Move a Lot

After knowing your diet plan, choose where you can exercise. You can jog in parks that do not collect entrance fees. You can do yoga in your home. You can lift weights using improvised tools such as a water bottle that contains sand, it becomes heavy. Other improvised workout routines can be the following:

At your home, try to do planking, push-up, and sit-up for 30 minutes everyday.

If you have stairs at your home, use it as a workout source. Climb first stairstep with left foot, then right foot. Step down using left foot, then right foot. Repeat for 5 times.

This is yet the best cardio exercise for me: jumprope. I swear I lost few pounds pounds after jumping ropes for 30 minutes everyday for 2 weeks. It is not just cardio, but also an overall workout routine that enhances muscle flexibility and mind-arm coordination. It works a lot of part of your body: arms, legs, knees, stomach, and thigh.

But if you have no time for exercise, go aggressively with your diet plan and try to move a lot. If your work involves sitting whole day, try to stand and have a short walk every 20 minutes. You can maybe go to the restroom, the kitchen, or talk to your friends. After work, if you live nearby, you can just walk the distance. Or if you commute, try to walk to the farthest jeepney or bus stop. At home, you can wash laundry standing up. Cook food. Watch the TV while doing something productive like cleaning. The key thing is try to move a lot.

Take it One Day at a Time

There are no shortcuts.  And it takes a significant amount of work. Nothing that is worth having comes easy. Just like any goals in life, shedding a few pounds and fat in the body needs discipline, work, and honestly some sacrifices. But enjoy your journey and don’t be too hard to yourself. Make it a lifestyle and not just a one-time or weeklong phase. Just like in the practice of frugal living, spend wisely. So choose your food wisely. Choose your motivations wisely. And you’ll just wake up one day and realize you have conquered yourself, and the reward is you lose some pounds and fat. Success!

 

About the Guest Author

This guest post is written by Cathy Tejano, a technical writer, blogger and a vegetarian-wannabe. She blogs at Lens and Pens.

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Research Says Being Overweight Can Lessen the Risk of Breast Cancer

Being overweight or obese during adolescence reduces a woman’s chances of getting breast cancer, researchers at Harvard Medical School discovered. This finding doesn’t mean that younger women could just eat chocolates and fast foods anytime.

The present study by Karin B. Michels and colleagues lends a new view on the relationship between adult weight change and premenopausal breast cancer among women. The authors similarly concluded that a woman’s weight at age 18 gives a stronger predictor of breast cancer risk. The risk is calculated through body mass index (BMI), a height-to-weight comparison.

For breast cancer, there is a clear association between obesity and cancer risk, particularly in postmenopausal women. A cancer organization reported that worldwide obesity has more than doubled since 1980. Thus, obesity is on the rise all over all the world, most especially in urban areas.

This interest encompasses the potential consequences of obesity in breast cancer risk among premenopausal women. The results of the study by Michel’s group showed that BMI at age 18 is a predictor of breast cancer in younger women than their current weight.

More than 116, 000 participants in Brigham and Women’s Nurses Heath Study were quizzed about their age, height, weight, menstrual cycles, family history of breast cancer, and fertility status, among others.

In the study, the researchers found out that there is more than 40 percent lower incidence of premenopausal breast cancer among women with a BMI of 27.5 at age 18, or higher incidence compared to women with a BMI between 20 and 22.4 at age 18.

It concluded that overweight and obesity are inversely related to the risk of breast cancer among premenopausal women.

Researchers said that the link to age of decrease premenopausal breast cancer risk may be explained by hormones. Before women reach puberty, females do not have to deal with estradiol (estrogen), progesterone, and other sex hormones that are responsible in ovulation.

But the theory on premenopausal women’s level of estrogen is yet to be solved.

Things change after menopause. A high body mass in adulthood increases breast cancer incidence among postmenopausal women. Weight gain since early adulthood and since menopausal has been associated with an increase in postmenopausal breast cancer, while weight loss after menopause may reduce the risk.

Many cohort studies also support the present study stating that greater body weight is associated with a decrease in premonopausal breast cancer risk and an increase in postmenopausal breast cancer risk.

A number of hypotheses discuss that obesity leads to a larger exposure to estrogen. Fat cells produce substances that could possibly increase breast cancer risk. Obesity also leads to other hormonal changes that might affect breast cancer risk.

However, Harvard researchers noted that data on the effect of weight change on breast cancer incidence among premenopausal women are sparse.

The good news is that body weight is one of the few breast cancer risk factors women have control over. Ronald delos Reyes, program coordinator of Eduardo J. Aboitiz Cancer Center (EJACC) of Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. (RAFI), said that a well balanced diet is always a good investment.

“A healthy body does not only promote good health but also protects us from diseases like cancer. Healthy lifestyle always tops the list of breast cancer prevention,” he added.

“Every woman and man should seriously consider investing their time and effort to maintain their ideal body weight. Having a healthy lifestyle and a healthy body should be an everyday priority all the time,” he stressed.

This article is based on the study “Adult weight change and incidence of premenopausal breast cancer” by Karen B. Michels, et. al.

Important note: This article first appeared in The Freeman Lifestyle. RAFI provided www.empressofdrac.com with a copy to further emphasize the importance of early detection in preventing cancer and to increase public support for cancer initiatives.

Photo source: cdn.hivehealthmedia.com

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Frugal Recipe: GAPS Spaghetti Squash Pasta

Note: Aside from the fact that this recipe is budget-friendly, this is also very healthy as 1 cup serving of cooked spaghetti squash only contains 42 calories, too low compared to a cup of cooked pasta which contains 221 calories.  This is a great alternative if you are maintaining a low-calorie diet.

One of the newest crazes to run through the dietary world is the Gut and Psychology Syndrome (or GAPS) meal plan. This comprehensive diet seeks to alleviate physical complications with digesting food while at the same time increasing mental output with key nutrition. Persons on the GAPS diet have claimed that their food sensitivities and intolerance have slowed down or even reversed once they begin to adhere to the protocols of the diet. You can make a quality GAPS spaghetti squash pasta and then store it securely if you are looking for a taste bud-friendly recipe in their diet litany.

Since spaghetti tends to be a family food, with recipes that can be simple or complex, staying true to family lore or seeking new experiments to jazz up the status quo, there are many ways to get your ideal spaghetti squash pasta to taste just like the real thing. In fact, you can create the squash pasta and sauce separately, freeze either one, and simply heat it up whenever you are in the mood for a fast and tasty dinner.

Begin with a medium sized spaghetti squash, cut in half with the seeds removed (you can keep the seeds for baking or flavoring). Bake the two sides for about thirty minutes until the noodles are a bit crunchy but not too brittle. Melt four tablespoons of butter over medium heat and sauté one onion (yellow, white, or red) and a bell pepper for a minute. Add any ground meat you prefer, beef or pork or turkey, but not tofu. Add three and a half cups crushed tomatoes, lower the heat, and bring the sauce mix to a simmer. Put in Italian seasoning and salt to taste.

Scrape out the cooked spaghetti squash into a large bowl and mix in two tablespoons of tomato paste with three cloves of garlic. You can either combine noodles and sauce to make a meal, or put store one or both for future meals. The sauce will keep for two to three weeks in a sealed container when refrigerated, but the noodles will dry out in about a week or so. Both can be frozen for up to one year without worry, but the sauce will need to be thoroughly defrosted if it is put in a freezer.

Photo Credit: Healthy Living Awaits

About the Guest Author

This is another guest contribution from our friends in FoodInsurance.com.  You may follow them in Twitter.

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Why is Korea Obsessed with Beauty & Cosmetic Surgery?

Note: This is a guest post written by Joon Lee, a blogger from South Korea.

Despite not wanting to be sucked in by media – with its overtly ridiculous obsession and glorification of beautiful people – there is no point in denying it: beauty rules. Everywhere we look, we are constantly reminded of how much easier the world seems to be for people blessed with the right face, hair and body parts.

And although the standards of beauty have changed over time and transcends different cultures, the desire to look beautiful is certainly ingrained into the human race. Sometimes, you can’t help but wonder whether your own life would be just that much better if the reflection in the mirror looking back at you were a bit more beautiful.

Let us take a look at South Korea. Plastic surgery statistics show around 93% of all women in Seoul have undergone cosmetic enhancement of some sort.  The typical starting age is 16 – 17 years; and they usually start with double eyelid surgery.

Double eyelid surgery is the most popular cosmetic surgery in Korea. It is usually a day surgery whereby a nip will result in beautiful eyes with natural creases, resulting in bigger and rounder-looking eyes.

A Land Obsessed with Beauty and Cosmetic Surgery

Photo Credit: www.bryologue.wordpress.com

This country is no doubt a leading destination for cosmetic surgery. But why is Korea so obsessed with beauty and cosmetic surgery? Is it because of vanity? Is it due to the popularity of K-pop and K-drama; with everyone wanting to mimic the look of their favorite Korean superstar?

The answer simply boils down to this: competition. In Korean society, having eoljjang (the right face or best face) is deemed as a huge asset. In Seoul alone, there are 25 million unemployed inhabitants. Many therefore believe eoljjang will thrust the individual to greater heights in a fiercely competitive environment.

In Korea, having the right face makes a difference between success and failure. This is why plastic surgery in Korea is perceived as a worthwhile and logical investment in the body, rather than a sign of vanity.

At around this time of year, we see many young Koreans take on the necessary cosmetic procedures in readiness for life’s next transition step. It is their belief that the perfected look will help them gain entry into a prestigious school or university and to obtain the right job in a tough job market.

Travel to Korea for Cosmetic Surgery

The efforts funneled into promoting top-class cosmetic surgeons and techniques have given many individuals confidence to travel to South Korea for plastic surgery. Korean plastic surgeons are renowned for their skill and cutting edge techniques; with many specializing in procedures that are most suited to the Asian demographic group.

New medical intervention in plastic surgical procedures – such as minimal scarring and day surgeries – has also driven the popularity of cosmetic surgery. There are plenty of beauty clinics and hospitals in Korea. In Seoul alone, the district of Gangnam-gu is hailed as the beauty belt of Korea.

Opting for cosmetic procedure, no matter how subtle or radical needs thorough research. The point here is: there is a need to be attentive to all that’s involved with cosmetic surgery.

These are some of the more pertinent pointers that you may wish to consider: choosing the right doctor, electing the proper procedure and recognizing the ramifications that go deeper than the glossy before and after photos that make it all look so promising. And lastly, manage your expectations of cosmetic surgery.

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The Increasing Number of AIDS Victim in Cebu

This is a guest post by Lords Screwbero.

Photo Credit: thirty86.com

Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) or  HIV-AIDS is caused due to the Human immune deficiency virus (HIV). AIDS is a life threatening disease and a challenge for the medical world across the globe. The number of AIDS cases reported in a year is increasing in some part of the world, and thus, many volunteer organizations and government are taking significant steps to ensure that people are aware about this deadly disease, the probable causes for it, and the ways to prevent it.

Cebu, Philippines is experiencing a noticeable spike in the AIDS cases since a few years. Nevertheless, Philippines is said to be a Low-HIV prevalence country compared to the statistics across the globe. However, Cebu city in Philippines stands at the second position out of the three most dreaded cities to have higher HIV-AIDS cases reported. Cebu follows Manila and is followed by Davao. Since the year 2011, Philippines has seen a 72% increase in AIDS cases in the year 2012.

According to the statistical data by the department of health (DOH), in the year 2010, country had reported total 4,424 AIDS victims starting from the year 1984. Out of these cases, total 835 cases were reported in the year 2009.

City Health Department’s (CHD) HIV/AIDS Detection Unit of the Cebu city has given the reports that till 2011, total 377 HIV/AIDS cases were reported in the Cebu city alone since 1989. Since, the disease has hit the country in 1980s, total 54 deaths have been reported in Cebu due to AIDS.

Means of Transmission of HIV/AIDS:

Sexual Contact:

Sexual contact has been the most common cause for transmission of HIV virus. However, what is surprising is that the sexual contact leading to the transmission of the virus is not the heterosexual transmission, but rather homosexual and bisexual contacts. Men having sex with men (MSM) is the most common cause of HIV/AIDS transmission in Cebu city, as anal sex is more prone to the virus infection than heterosexual sex.

Needle Sharing:

There is a high increase in the drug users and needle sharing for the injection of drugs. This is yet another reason for high number of HIV/AIDS victims in Cebu. Usually drug users group shares the same needle to inject the drugs and facilitates the spread of virus. As per surveillance reports conducted over 300 drug users, 159 were HIV positive. A percent of more than 50% of drug users being HIV positive or at higher risk of developing AIDS is epidemic.

Mother to Child:

Although, this factor has not yet been significant with not much cases reported of virus transmission from a HIV positive mother to a child, but this reason should be concentrated too.

Steps to Control HIV/AIDS in Cebu:

Health authorities in Cebu have taken note of the alarming increase of HIV/AIDS cases over last year. Sweeping actions are required to fight against AIDS. The CHD is promoting its “ABCDE” program detailed as follows:

A- Abstinence from sex

B – Be faithful to your partner

C – Incorporate use of Condom

D – Do not use drugs nor share needles

E – Early detection is the key

People with higher risk such as youth working at call centers with lucrative salaries and risky sexual behavior, MSM groups, the sex workers and drug users are being educated about safe sex, and about refraining from sharing needles to prevent the HIV virus from spreading.

Cebu has seen a growth in the number of HIV/AIDS cases since last few years and this increase is expected to grow further, as the city is highly urbanized city with total population over 4 million and an increasing number of sex workers. Cebu at a verge to be the city with highest HIV/AIDS victims in Philippines is carrying out measures to control this deadly disease. People need to be educated and motivated about safe sex and giving up drugs. This can drop the HIV/AIDS cases in the city.

This guest post is written by Lords Screwbero, a writer from www.thecorrect.com

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Plastic Surgery In The Philippines

Image Source/Corbis

The Philippines is fast becoming one of the world’s most popular medical tourism destinations. People from around the globe head to the archipelago each year to undergo a wide range of treatments. Plastic surgery abroad, particularly in the Philippines, is all the rage now due to the world class medical facilities, the highly skilled cosmetic surgeons, and the low prices of procedures. In addition, many people want to combine their treatment with a holiday on the beautiful islands in the Philippines.

Who Gets Plastic Surgery in the Philippines?

There are many different types of people who opt to undergo plastic surgery in the Philippines. Some people simply do not like the way their body or face looks and they are seeking to enhance their beauty. Others have low self esteem or a negative body image and they want an extra boost of confidence. Yet others are born with birth defects which they would like to alter or remove. Regardless of the reason, these people look to the credible doctors in the Philippines to safely change their appearance for the better.

World Class Medical Facilities

The Philippines has numerous medical facilities that meet and surpass high standards in other countries. Many have state-of-the-art medical equipment and advanced research centers that use the latest technology. Some clinics include private recovery rooms for patients with all the amenities of a hotel room or apartment. Other facilities are located within steps of white sandy beaches, making the recovery period that much more pleasant. Some plastic surgery clinics even offer video conferencing so clients can have consultations with doctors without leaving the comfort of their homes.

Highly Skilled Physicians

Many of the surgeons in the Philippines train overseas and come back to their native country to set up private clinics or work in established medical centers. This means they have the same skill sets that a doctor in a highly developed country would have. The popularity of plastic surgery in the Philippines means that surgeons have plenty of experience working with all types of patients. Furthermore, most doctors from the Philippines speak English very well, so it is easy to communicate your wishes and concerns with your surgeon.

Low Prices

Plastic surgery procedures in the Philippines are incredibly cheap compared to the costs in other countries. The reason for this is that the cost of living in the Philippines is low. Rent, infrastructure, and supplies are a fraction of the cost that they are in countries such as Canada, the USA, Australia, and the UK. For example, a face lift in the United States costs between USD $7000 to $9000, whereas in the Philippines the fees range from just USD $1,800 to $4,700. Even with the cost of the plane ticket and accommodation, this equates to huge savings.

Combining Treatment With a Holiday

The Philippines is renowned for its beautiful beaches, stunning mountain ranges, vibrant culture, and friendly people. It is one of the top vacation destinations in Southeast Asia. Many people choose the Philippines for plastic surgery so that they can combine their medical procedure with a holiday. Some people opt to recover in one of the many beachside resorts, while others go diving, trekking, or simply relax in a luxurious spa. It is easy to travel around the Philippines as many people speak English fluently, and public transport is cheap and efficient.

The Advantages of Plastic Surgery in the Philippines

There are many benefits to choosing the Philippines for your plastic surgery procedure. For one, it is discreet. You can simply book a vacation and return home looking younger and rejuvenated, and no one will be the wiser. In addition, the facilities and doctors rival some of the best in the world. You will be getting the same care and professionalism as you would in your home country. Finally, you can take advantage of the beauty of the Philippines while you are there. Rather than simply booking a surgical procedure and returning home to recover, you can take the time to travel amongst some of the most stunning islands in the world.

The Disadvantages of Plastic Surgery in the Philippines

While there are many benefits of undergoing plastic surgery in the Philippines, there are also some precautions to take. In the Philippines any licensed doctor can perform surgery. This means you need to be careful when choosing a doctor or a clinic. Be sure to research accredited and experienced surgeons. Look for educational qualifications, experience, and recommendations from other patients. Ask questions to ascertain whether the clinic maintains high professional standards, and be sure that the surgeon your choose is highly trained.

There are many reasons why millions of people choose clinics in the Philippines for their plastic surgery needs. From facelifts to breast augmentation to reconstructive surgery, plastic surgery procedures in the Philippines are a fraction of the cost that they would be in other countries. In addition, the quality of care and advanced technology mean that you get the same standards you would at home, if not higher. Moreover, the beauty of the Philippines is the perfect backdrop for your new and improved look.

You can read more about plastic surgery at YourGuidetoPlasticSurgery.com.

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Too Much Computer Work Causes RSI

N.B.: For over 3 months now, I’m currently experiencing RSI due to so much computer work.  Here’s a guest post about RSI and how to treat it from Ana Brady.  Hope this will help fellow computer workers relieve or treat their RSI problems. – Empress Of Drac

What is RSI and How to Treat It

With the development of technology and appearance of computers, people got a batch of seemingly new disorders/disabilities, or at least new terminology for them: carpal tunnel syndrome, gamer’s thumb, stylus finger, etc. All of these fall under a generic term: Repetitive Stress Injury (RSI).

RSI is not an illness since it has no pathophysiological cause, but it involves pain in a specific part of the body (usually the arms, hands, wrists and back) that can go away on its own, or become a very serious problem and a long term disability.

A lot of people, especially in the US and UK, have been complaining about this problem in the past couple of years. The reason is that people are spending more and more time in front of a computer, either because their job demands it, or because they are becoming computer addicts. The main causes of RSI are:

- improper posture in front of the computer, at work or at home

- repetitive actions with one’s hand or arm

- repeated exertions of pressure on certain objects

- stress at work combined with the above

-  and too much computer work

Two main factors that influence the progress of RSI in computer users are the repetitive clicking of the mouse and “strainful” typing on a keyboard.

Prevention and Treatment

The best advice to computer users is to prevent RSI before it happens. Of course, people tend to dismiss such advice as irrelevant, because everyone thinks it won’t happen to THEM. That’s always a mistake. In case of repetitive stress injury, the consequences can be very grave. There are many cases of people who couldn’t go back to performing their duties at work for years to come and had to apply for disability coverage.

RSI Prevention is consist of:

- most importantly, recognizing the potential problem

- acquiring an ergonomic keyboard that will be perfectly adjusted to one’s hands

- taking breaks from work every 60 minutes to relax and do exercises with the hands, arms, shoulders (get a squeezing ball, or simply do stretching and squeezing motions)

If RSI nonetheless develops, you are best off consulting a doctor. He/she will most probably prescribe resting of that particular stressed-out body part, and medications. You should not take medications without the doctor’s advice, because you can only make the situation worse.

An important part of preventing or treating RSI is acquiring proper computer equipment. It is essential to purchase a good ergonomic keyboard that won’t strain your hands and fingers. The technology is, as always, quick to answer the users’ demands. With the rise of RSI problems, big companies started producing a variety of ergonomic keyboards to meet this new challenge.

If you care about your health, you should make your research about what kind of keyboard would best suit you, and make this investment. Don’t wait until it’s too late.

Photo Credit: NotFromUtrecht

About the Guest Author:

Ana Brady is an emerging blogger especially interested in writing about recreation, nutrition, healthy lifestyles, family, etc. She writes when she’s not working on a project on piggyback labels.

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Breast Cancer Awareness

Fundraising for medical research has become an important element of raising disease awareness, and nowhere has it been more effective than for breast cancer. With the Susan G. Komen Foundation, which was established in 1982, millions of women and their families have been educated about  breast cancer treatment, prevention and support. Other efforts have been established around the world to help people learn more about the disease and how it can affect them, as well as to raise money for both research and treatment.

The latest statistics for breast cancer among Filipino women are grim: according to an article on Xinhuanet.com, three out of every 100 women will develop breast cancer in their lifetimes. And breast cancer has surpassed lung cancer as the most common cancer in the country. Raising awareness, as well as funds, in the Philippines is critical to fighting breast cancer.

Tying a pink ribbon

Social causes haven’t always been as well-organized as they are now; while private foundations have been established over the decades to help eradicate various diseases, it wasn’t until the Pink Ribbon Foundation was established in the early 1990’s that a dedicated effort to fight breast cancer was made. With the help of founder and pink ribbon creator Evelyn Lauder, the trend became an icon of breast cancer awareness.

Donating a stamp at a time


And several countries have joined the fight against breast cancer by issuing postage stamps to help raise money for the fight against breast cancer. The U.S. issued its first breast cancer research stamp in 1988, which has sold approximately $75 million since they were introduced; the stamps cost a bit more, but the extra money is donated to breast cancer research. More than 15 other countries now issue the stamp, and citizens of the Philippines are lobbying their government to join. The Philippines was one of the first countries to offer a stamp that help raise money for medical research with its anti-tuberculosis stamp introduced in the 1950’s.

A world free of breast cancer

There are several risks and factors that lead to a woman developing breast cancer, and elements like heredity and environment are often out of a woman’s control. But efforts to teach women and their families about breast cancer include education about the risks and factors they can control—diet, exercise, and other chemical exposures—and how they can seek appropriate treatment. With the work of ordinary people and the research of the medical community, the world is closer to a cure than ever before.
Breast cancer has taken the lives of women all over the world, and while we’ve made progress toward helping women survive and live with the disease, there’s still more work to be done. It’s important that both men and women are aware of how breast cancer can affect them, and of what they can do to help make breast cancer a distant memory.
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Plastic Surgery in South Korea

The rise of the Korean entertainment industry highlights a lot of interesting facts about Korea’s culture and lifestyle.  We, Cebuanos, are fond of watching Korean drama series and we are even big fans of some of these K-Pop artists.  Hollywood’s monopoly of the entertainment industry has been put to an end since the turn of the 21st century through globalization brought by information revolution – the internet.

This entry features one of the most controversial and interesting parts of Korean culture – Plastic Surgery (or others put it as the culture of Beauty Obsession).

Photo Credit

One of the most interesting things about plastic surgery – a generally expanding branch of surgery – is that it is not the same everywhere. Different countries have different trends, and in some cases even different surgeries. So, while you may think that you can get all of the information you need on the topic by visiting an American-based website such as Aboutplasticsurgery.com, you may actually need to do more thorough research if your goal is to fully understand all different types of plastic surgery. Plastic surgery in Korea follows entirely different trends than, for example, in the United States.

To begin with, plastic surgery is simply far more common in South Korea than in most countries. According to the Asian Plastic Surgery Guide mentioned above, 15 to 30 percent of all Korean women are estimated to have had surgeries at some point. It is also noted that if this study focused only on women under 30, that percentage could be closer to 50. Simply put, Korean women have demonstrated a steady and growing attraction to plastic surgery, and there is little to suggest that the trend will stop, as methods continue to improve and changes remain “in style.” However, the actual surgeries themselves are a bit different than what many people are used to as well.

While procedures such as breast augmentation and liposuction are common in South Korea, just as they are in the West, there is also a lot of focus aimed at surgeries called “double eyelid surgery” and “augmentation rhinoplasty.” The fist of these is designed to create a crease in the upper eyelid of Korean women, which some have noted as, possibly, a physical attempt at “westernizing” the East Asian appearance. The augmentation rhinoplasty is designed to tastefully enlarge the nose, which could also be said to be something aiming at a bit of a westernized look. Regardless of the intentions behind them, however, these procedures are two of the very most popular in South Korea.

There are also a few popular procedures that are almost exclusive to South Korea. For example, cheek and jaw surgeries are often performed in South Korea, but are rarely addressed in the West. Typically, the closest options to these surgeries in Western countries are chin surgery and facelifts, each of which can earn somewhat similar results. However, surgery directly used to enhance the cheeks and jaw is somewhat unique to Koreans. Additionally, calf reduction surgeries are relatively popular in South Korea, and essentially do not exist elsewhere. All of this helps to demonstrate how different plastic surgery trends and practices can actually be across borders.

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Mosbeau Launches All-In-One Facial Products

Mosbeau Philippines just recently launched their newest beauty products – the Mosbeau All-In-One Facial Cream and the Mosbeau All-In-One Soap. This All-In-One beauty product concept puts an end to tedious beauty regimens. This simply stunning facial skin care innovation gives you the benefits of whitening, anti-aging, moisturizing, UV protection and peeling.

First in the Philippines

The Mosbeau All-In-One Facial Product Line is the very first of its kind in the Philippines. It is a facial care breakthrough – the result of the perfect combination of the Beautifoam Effect and the Gel type Cream to achieve flawless and fairer skin. It is 100% made in Japan – from clinical research, ingredients, development, manufacturing, and packaging. Its main ingredient is Placental Protein which is proven twice more effective than Glutathione.

What is Placental Protein?

Placental Protein is derived from a mammalian organ that connects the fetus from the uterine. It is a widely used whitening ingredient in Japan because it can stimulate skin cell renewal that enables skin revitalization. Lab tests prove that it is more effective than Glutathione.

Price

Photo Source: Mosbeau Philippines

The Mosbeau All in one set (Mosbeau All in one cream and Mosbeau All in one soap) is only Php 1, 680. If you only want to buy the Mosbeau All in one cream you can buy it at Php 1, 480. The Mosbeau All in one soap is at Php 400.

Product Testing

I’m currently documenting the effect of these products on my skin. Will post a review about its effectiveness here on my blog after a month or two. This time I won’t have any difficulties using it because it’s for external use only, unlike the food supplement that needs to be swallowed.

Mosbeau Placenta White Food Supplement

I received numerous inquiries about the effect of this product on me. Unfortunately, I stopped taking it after 10 days because I can’t swallow it anymore. My younger sister was the one who continue taking it. She’s currently taking the one which is consumable for 15-days. Will ask her for a review and will post it here.

Though I failed to test the product on me, I heard positive reviews from my CBSi pals who are also taking the supplement. Long lasting effect can be achieved if used consistently and in a long period of time.

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How I Lose Weight and Keep It

I know lots of Cebuanas out there have problems with regards to weight loss. I decided to write this entry to share how I manage to lose weight and keep it.

Gaining Weight is Easy – Losing it is Difficult

About 2 years ago, I was really overweight. Most of my dresses were getting tight on me and though I tried to go to the gym, I didn’t see any result. I sometimes get depressed because I feel so ugly and I don’t want to go out. I tried dieting – not eating breakfast or dinner, skipping rice, and a lot of useless stuff but to no avail.

I was not aiming to become super slim like those skeleton-like models in Fashion-TV. All I wanted was to shed some pounds so that I can keep my normal weight and also to avoid health problems that come along with being overweight.

Slimming 18 (Brazilian Coffee)

Believe it or not, for the first time in my life, I followed the advice of my friend and took a Brazilian Coffee which she said is effective in reducing weight.

I’m not a believer in slimming products or slimming pills. I prefer the natural way of losing weight – no medications or whatsoever artificial stuff. But, I was so desperate that time. I took her advice and religiously drank the stale tasting coffee for 36 days. And well, she’s right. It worked. But…

Side Effect

Don’t be scared. Though the coffee has a slight side effect, it is not scary nor something that you should be alarmed of. “Side Effect” – as you see it’s singular. I only experienced slight heart palpitations. The coffee has a component that activates your metabolism to boost up the weight loss process that’s why palpitations are normal occurrences while you are taking it.

Why I Stopped Taking It

I stopped taking the coffee after 36 days because I already achieved my aimed weight. Also, I’m not comfortable with the palpitations. A lot of my friends were awed how I quickly lose weight, but…

How To Keep Your Desired Weight

Below is a comparison photo of me taken like 2 years ago and my recent photo taken 1 or two months ago.

It was really great losing those pounds and achieving your desired weight, but another dilemma arises. How to keep it? In my case, how to keep it without going to the gym or doing any exercise?

The very main eating technique that I do is to eat LESS rice. Believe me. Please take note of the capitalized word. It’s no joke and it works really GREAT. Don’t stick with the half rice stuff. Just eat the smallest amount of rice you can muster. And, eat a lot of meat or viand that comes along with your rice.

I will describe in detail how I maintain my weight in my next Health entry.

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The 30-Day Mosbeau Whitening Challenge

Update: Sorry for this very late notification.  I had only used the product for around 3 days, after that I stopped.  I can’t tolerate the smell. My younger sister was the one who continued taking it.

When I publish something here in my blog, I always consider first the validity of my post and if what I’m posting is the truth and if it would really benefit my readers and visitors.  I don’t just recommend anything just because I get this and that but because I’m really satisfied of what I found out or what I saw.

I’m really very critical when it comes to buying products.  Like for example, if I saw some whitening commercial on TV and the one who endorses the product is some mestiza model, obviously, I would be a fool if I will fall for that crap.  Unfortunately, most people won’t even bother to analyze that there is no truth to that bloody advertisement…that mestiza models were born with white skins.  And this goes as well with those friggin’ shampoo commercials we see on TV everyday.  I’ll be damned if those salon-smooth and silky hair can be attained by using a 5-peso per sachet shampoo.

Last week, I was being invited (along with my CBSi pals) by Mosbeau Cebu to try out their Placenta White Food Supplement.  Mosbeau promises a fairer skin after 30-days or even 14-days.  According to them, their Placenta White product is enriched with placental protein, a popular whitening and anti-aging ingredient in Japan.  Placenta White is also composed of collagen, a potent anti-aging ingredient that enhances skin’s elasticity to help fight the unsightly signs of skin aging such as wrinkles and fine lines.  Glutathione, Vitamin C and Asparagus extract complete the skin-whitening and anti-aging combo of Placenta White.

Since I’m quite intrigued how effective this product is, I accepted this 30-day whitening challenge.  I posted above my photo taken on the very first day I started taking the supplement.  I will be posting another photo after 30-days.  If this product is effective, then I will be recommending this to all my morena-skinned friends and visitors who wanted to have fairer and younger looking skin.

By the way, just for the record, I’m not really so obsessed with this skin-whitening phenomenon among Asian women.  I only do this to help my co-specie in selecting better and effective products.  Check this blog after 30 days.  Ja mata ne, minna san. (;

About Mosbeau Philippines

Mosbeau started to venture in the Philippines in early 2008.  Mosbeau prescription-strength skin-whitening and anti-aging and skin care products were exclusively offered by dermatologists from different parts of the country, soon making it available in clinics nationwide and one of the most recommended products by dermatologists. (More about Mosbeau after 30 days…(;)

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Frizberry Yogurt Opening at SM!

Thousands of years ago, Mesopotamians made the very first yogurt.  There are actually evidence that these people had domesticated goats and sheep, and the milk that they got from those animals were stored in gourds, then later on the milk became a curd.  This curd was the early form of yogurt.

Thousands of years later and a few days from now, a new variety of yogurt will be introduced to the public.  And this is not in Mesopotamia, but here in Cebu.  Frizberry Yogurt will have its opening this 8th of March, 2010 at SM City.  Every yogurt-lover will surely not miss this event.

Quick Facts:

Yoghurt is nutritionally rich in protein, calcium, riboflavin, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12.  It has nutritional benefits beyond those of milk. People who are moderately lactose-intolerant can enjoy yoghurt without ill effects, because much of the lactose in the milk precursor is converted to lactic acid by the bacterial culture. (Source: Answers.Com)

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Ashtanga Vinsaya Yoga at Body Mind Well-Being Inc.

Photo by Leo Castillo

I don’t know if it’s a coincidence, but I and my officemates were actually planning to enroll in a yoga class long before I was invited to a Yoga Workshop along with my CBS mate, Prince Ryan Gilig.  I’ve been planning to enroll in any health and fitness program, but my erratic work schedule became a big hindrance.  It was actually my pleasure to accept Edert’s invitation to attend and cover his friend’s Yoga Workshop (Intro to Ashtanga Yoga Principles) last 23rd of October at the 5th floor of AMSLAI building in Lahug, Cebu City.

The workshop was headed by Amitabha Ebj, an international Yoga Practitioner  of 37 years and the Managing Director of Body Mind Well Being Inc.. It focuses more on Ashtanga basics wherein the participants were being taught proper sun salutations, plus exploration of breathing and in deep of the unique principlye system of Ashtaga yoga breath movement.

Ashtanga Yoga according to Ashtanga Yoga Institute, is an ancient system of Yoga that was taught by Vamana Rishi.  One of its main components is the Vinyasa, which means breathing and movement system.  It constitutes that for each movement, there is one breath.  Its main purpose is for internal cleansing.  During the workshop, the participants didn’t only experience the wellness of the body, but also of the soul.

The other important component is the Tristhana.  This describes the three places of attention or action: posture, breathing system, and looking place.  According to AYI, these three are very important for yoga practice, which also cover three levels of purification: the body, nervous system, and mind.  In the Ashtanga Vinsaya Yoga Workshop, Ebj properly emphasized all of these to the participants.

There are six poisons that are being burned when you practice Ashtanga Yoga.  These are desire, anger, delusion, greed, envy, and sloth.  It is said that when Yoga practice is sustained with great diligence and dedication over a long period of time, the heat generated from it burns away these poisons, and the light of our inner nature shines forth. (This forms the practical and philosophic basis of Ashtanga Yoga as taught by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois.)

Ashtanga Mantra (Opening Prayer) and Mangala Mantra (Closing Prayer) were also performed during the workshop.  The participants were also able to performed the following various sets of Ashtanga Yoga postures and positions.

At the end of activity, the participants were being treated to a very healthy snacks of camote tops juice squeezed with lemons, empanada filled with vegetable fillings, and crackers topped with ground vegan meat.

If you are interested to practice Ashtanga Yoga, you can contact Body Mind Well Being Inc. at 032-5112342, 032-2323332, SMS 09228322500 or email at bodymindwellbeing@yahoo.com.

Reference: Ashtanga Yoga Institute

N.B.: Video documentation of this event is still being edited by Prince Ryan Gilig.

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Advocate for anti-HPV campaign

What is HPV? It’s an incurable STD that infect about 40% of sexually active individuals in the county. HPV stands for Human Papilloma Viruses. I incidentally read about this in a mag somewhere in Ayala. The common symptom or sign that you are contaminated with this virus is the appearance of warts in your genitals. I googled and found this…

Human papillomaviruses (HPV) are common viruses that can cause warts. There are more than 100 types of HPV. Most are harmless, but about 30 types put you at risk for cancer. These types affect the genitals and you get them through sexual contact with an infected partner. They are classified as either low-risk or high-risk. Low-risk HPV can cause genital warts. High-risk HPV can lead to cancers of the cervix, vulva, vagina, and anus in women. In men, it can lead to cancers of the anus and penis.

Click here for more…

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