Saturday, 31 December 2011

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Thursday, 29 December 2011

Mediband urges diabetics to be prepared

A leading medical ID device producer is urging diabetics to take advantage of the silicone wristbands on offer to them in a bid to make it easier for paramedics to access information relating to their illness if an emergency situation should arise.

Mediband, creators of the medical ID bracelets, has just launched in the UK and has produced a range of wristbands designed for people with diabetes, as well as a range of specific allergies and food intolerances such as nuts and dairy. The company has also created a wallet card that can be printed with all known conditions and allergies for the carrier, which can easily be taken anywhere.

Also on offer are a range of custom designed wristbands which can be personalised to suit the wearer, as well as custom reversible designer bracelets for those who wish to be more discreet but still need to communicate the relevant information.

Michael Randall from Mediband says: “There is no reason not to purchase one of these Medibands. We cater for all forms of diabetes, including insulin and non insulin dependent. They come in a range of colours and sizes so are suitable for anyone and everyone. They could be one of the most important purchases you ever make, because they could potentially save your life.”

Diabetes UK, one of the foremost charities for the condition states on their website: “It’s really important that you carry some form of medical ID with you at all times, so that if you ever become unwell, people are aware that you have diabetes”

Prices for the bands range from £2.08 to £1.35, depending on the size of the order.

Further information on the Mediband wristbands is available from www.mediband.co.uk.

Mediband was originally founded in Sydney, Australia as a subsidiary of Handband, and has just launched in the UK. The company now caters for over 20 different medical conditions, and that number is growing.

A new very healthy alternative to sugar? It's called Total Sweet

Sugar has been part of our diet for hundreds of years and remains a staple of our everyday lives. It has three main drawbacks however, which have caused many users to shift to sweeteners:
•Sweet, sugary foods and drinks have been linked to obesity; largely due to a high calorific and GI values
•Sugar causes dental decay and plaque
•Diabetes, especially type 2, is becoming increasingly common among the population and is linked to sugar consumption; so those living with diabetes or trying to avoid it are advised to steer clear of sugary foods and drinks.

There are now a range of different artificial sweeteners that have been created largely with the intention of creating a sweet substance with little or no calorific value

•There has however been a lot of bad press surrounding artificial sweeteners and possible links to cancer
•Whilst the cancer links are disputed, more recently claims have arisen suggesting that artificial sweeteners may actually be detrimental to dieting because they are so intensely sweet and are ‘non-nutritive’, increasing users appetites and food consumption
•Artificial sweeteners are difficult to bake with

An increasingly popular option in the face of the scares around ‘artificial’ sweeteners. Several fruit sugars have been launched, which are largely promoted on the grounds that they are natural. They also have a relatively low GI value compared to sucrose
•Fruit sugars are worse for your teeth than ordinary sugar
•Fructose has been linked to obesity as it is more readily laid down as fat than sugar
•Many of these sweeteners come in syrup form which is hard to replace sugar with in cooking
Fructose (Fruit Sugar) Alternatives
Sugar - fructose

Total Sweet is the world’s first ‘total sugar alternative’ and ticks all the boxes:
A solution for dieters that allows them to enjoy sweet food whilst encouraging weight loss
A natural alternative to sugar
A solution suitable for diabetics
An alternative that actively promotes healthy teeth
An option offering health benefits not health scares
Can be used exactly like sugar in baking or otherwise
It has no taste difference to ordinary sugar
A product that is good for the environment as well as your body
Total Sweet Introduction

Total Sweet is a ‘nutritive’ sugar alternative, that is to say it contains calories, but these calories are healthy calories (see below)
Total Sweet has 40% less calories than sugar and 75% less available carbohydrates BUT
Total Sweet is absorbed slowly and has a GI value of just 7, meaning it keeps you feeling fuller for longer, less likely to snack and therefore much more likely to lose weight
Studies have confirmed xylitol aids with weight loss:
A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed those who had 25g of xylitol, compared with nothing, glucose, fructose, or sucrose (sugar), ate 230 less calories at their next meal
This suppression of appetite was also observed in a study carried out at Leeds University and published in the British Journal of Nutrition showing those who ate yoghurts for breakfast that were sweetened with xylitol rather than sugar went on to eat 10% less for lunch

Weight Watchers have given xylitol a Pro Points value of “0”. This is because whilst xylitol contains calories they appreciate it can aid with weight loss

“We would rather people didn’t add sugar to what they eat, but xylitol used sensibly could reduce dependence on conventional sugars” Dr David Haslam – Chairman of the National Obesity Forum

An Effective Dieting Aid
A Natural Solution
Xylitol is derived from the Greek word ‘xyl’ meaning wood as it was first discovered in Birch Wood after the Second World War. Birch wood xylitol remains the highest quality xylitol
Xylitol is found in various plants and is even made by our own bodies
The xylitol used in Total Sweet is extracted from a sustainable source of European birch wood With a Great Taste
Total Sweet looks and tastes just like sugar ,has the same sweetness and can be used in just the same way as sugar

A Diabetic Solution
Around 3 million people in the UK are diabetic, 90% of these have type 2 diabetes
Cutting down on sugar intake is advised in the treatment of diabetes, an increasing number of Type 2 diabetes is being attributed to bad diets and being overweight (often due to too many sugary and fatty foods). Not only does Total Sweet provide a sugar alternative that has a very minimal impact on blood sugar levels – making it ideal for diabetics – it also allows type 2 diabetics to diet, but still enjoy sweet foods
Diabetes is often linked to poor dental health, making Total Sweet even more advisable
Total Sweet is recommended by many nutritionists, medical and diabetes experts

Actively promotes healthy teeth
Total Sweet doesn’t help teeth just because users cut out sugar, rather it actively prevents and reverses numerous dental conditions
It has been observed over several decades that xylitol produces an alkaline environment within the mouth – this is seen to dramatically reduce the number of Streptoccocus bacteria, which are the main cause of dental caries. The number of studies in this area now run into the hundreds
Further studies have now shown xylitol also has an ability to reduce plaque
Current studies are now showing that xylitol has an ability to remineralise damaged teeth
Xylitol is recommended by dentists around the world

Other health benefits
Xylitol can be used to help prevent ear infections
Studies have shown that xylitol reduces the adherence of thrush to cells and can not only reduce its numbers, but also the amount of carcinogenic chemicals it produces
Osteoporosis – studies have shown that xylitol can help strengthen bones – it is thought xylitol may help the body absorb more calcium

Easy to use
Total Sweet can be used exactly as sugar (except in bread as it can’t feed yeast)
In can be used to replace sugar, like for like, in any recipes
It is used by top chefs
It can be used in hot drinks or sprinkled over fruit or cereals just like sugar

Healthy for the planet
Total Sweet is made from sustainable birch wood from Finland not to be confused with lower quality Chinese corn sourced xylitol
For every tree used two are planted in its place
Uses a recyclable, reseable pouch
Through ‘Trees For The Future’ they have planted over 50,000 trees in third world countries to date

To learn more visit them at www.totalsweet.co.uk.

Diabetes. What it is, what it does, what to do with it

Diabetes. At one time a diagnosis of diabetes was considered as either as death sentence or at the very least either a series of painful injections for the rest of your life, and/or a extremely limited diet, with bland, unappetising meals or special diabetic foods that often carried the message: "Warning. Overconsumption of this product may cause stomach upsets."They should also have carried a "wealth warning" as they often carried a shockingly high premium price.

Well, that was how it was, but that's not how it is today. Treatments are different, a lot of the old dietary advice has been superseded by new, more up-to-date knowledge, or discovered for what it was, arrogant guesswork.

The last few blood tests I have had have shown a raised fasting level of glucose, so they are monitoring it. It is probably either diabetes or pre-diabetes.

Over the next weeks and months I will be writing a series of articles based on my understanding of diabetes and the monitoring equipment that is now available for home use, special foods and drinks for diabetics and also what the modern thinking is on what diabetics and pre-diabetics can and can't eat or drink, or what they need to express caution with.

Saturday, 24 December 2011

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Friday, 23 December 2011

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Confused.com medical insurance comparison now powered by ActiveQuote

Private medical insurance comparison website ActiveQuote is pleased to announce the launch of its latest partnership with Confused.com.

Launched in 2002, Confused.com was the first website in the UK to compare car insurance online. Now, Confused.com is one of the biggest and most popular price comparison services in the UK and generates over one million quotes per month for a wide range of insurance products.

Confused.com recognises that consumers want the best experience when comparing products online. That is why from December 2011 the Confused.com private medical insurance service will be provided by ActiveQuote, the only true medical insurance comparison website in the UK.

ActiveQuote’s technology will power the medical insurance price comparison on Confused.com. This “white label” partnership means that consumers use the ActiveQuote comparison technology on the Confused.com website, with any advice provided by ActiveQuote’s specialist medical insurance consultants.

Matthew Lloyd, of Confused.com said of the new partnership: “We are delighted at the appointment of ActiveQuote as our new partner. For specialist products such as private medical insurance, consumers are looking for an excellent online comparison coupled with excellent off-line advice and we believe that ActiveQuote have proven their leadership in both of these areas.”

Before ActiveQuote launched three years ago it was thought that private medical insurance was too complicated to be compared online. Many aggregators avoid PMI altogether, and the few websites that claim to compare policies do so on a rudimentary level, focusing only on price.

But with private medical insurance, price is not the most important factor. Low cost policies often exclude important benefits. So rather than showing the cheapest policies first, ActiveQuote presents the product closest to the consumer’s budget or renewal premium, with cheaper and more expensive options arranged to the left and right.

ActiveQuote’s unique online comparison tool allows customers to refine their search online, with immediate updates to the price instantly shown on the comparison page. Consumers can specify exactly what they want in a policy and the site will remove unsuitable quotes. Every variable can be tailored online, including excess, choosing a different hospital list or adding an option such as dental cover.

Dr. Richard Theo, Managing Director of ActiveQuote commented: “We are really excited about the launch of our private medical insurance comparison on Confused.com which is the one of the best known insurance comparison brands in the UK. It is a real endorsement of the quality of user experience and customer service that we have strived to achieve here at ActiveQuote.”

ActiveQuote Health Ltd is a specialist private medical insurance intermediary based in Cardiff, authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority.
 
www.activequote.com

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

A third of adults might miss out on Chrismtas parties. Bimuno makes sure it's not going to be you!

Don’t let flagging energy levels ruin your festive spirit this year!
Bimuno IMMUNAID offers a helping hand to keep you healthy this Christmas!

New research has revealed less than one in 10 UK adults feel 100% and on top of the world in the winter, with nearly 6 out of 10 saying that they regularly feel tired and low in energy compared to any other time of year.

Shockingly, a third (32%) admitted they have previously missed out on a Christmas or New Year’s Eve party due to feeling run down or tired. With people looking forward to some much-needed Christmas cheer this year, it would be shame for people to miss out because of their health.

The research, conducted by Opinion Matters on behalf of Bimuno IMMUNAID, also revealed that over a third (35%) of adults are feeling stressed and anxious about getting ready for Christmas such as shopping, expenses and the food preparation.

Increased stress combined with low energy levels can reduce the body’s immunity, making it difficult to fight winter infections such as colds, sore throats and flu. So, make sure you’re prepared this Christmas by stocking up on winter essentials such as Bimuno IMMUNAID, a unique second generation prebiotic supplement, proven to help maintain immune health

Dr Ellie Cannon, expert GP from Sky Living's 'Slave To Food' says, “The best way to stop feeling run down and catching colds and infections is to build up our immunity. Few people realise that around 60% of our immune system is associated with the gut, which is home to both good and bad bacteria. Stress, tiredness and sickness can reduce the amount of good bacteria which in turn can affect our ability to fight infections and stay healthy.

"Using supplements such as Bimuno IMMUNAID, which has prebiotics that help the ‘good’ gut bacteria to grow and flourish while reducing harmful ‘bad’ bacteria, is a great idea. By ensuring a healthy balance of good versus bad bacteria, we can help to maintain a healthy immune system.”

Unlike other supplements Bimuno IMMUNAID works in a unique and effective way, at the centre of our immune system, the gut. By increasing and strengthening the gut's immunity-boosting good bacteria (bifidobacteria), Bimuno works in harmony with the body’s own natural defences.

Nearly 75% of the 1131 respondents also agreed that the winter months (December through to February) were when they were at their unhealthiest, with more than half saying that they over-indulged on rich and fatty foods in December and more than a third saying they exercised less than normal. All this can further compromise the body’s immunity and decrease energy levels.

Geoff Collins, Head of Consumer Marketing for Bimuno comments, “It’s not easy to stay healthy at the best of times but especially so over the Christmas period. As this is also the time for colds and flu, keeping our immune system fit and healthy should be a key consideration. Bimuno IMMUNAID includes a unique second generation prebiotic developed with the University of Reading which has been proven in scientific studies to help as well as the added benefit of vitamin C, making it ideal for those looking for added support during the winter season.”

Bimuno IMMUNAID, a health supplement available as convenient and discreet soft chewable pastilles contains a tailored dosage of the unique second generation GOS (trans-Galacto-oligosaccharide) prebiotic ensuring to help maintain immune health.

Unlike some probiotics (‘live’ good bacteria ingested as tablets or in probiotic food stuffs), prebiotics are not digested in the stomach or small intestine, but reach the colon intact where they can be of maximum benefit. Bimuno can also be carried around in your bag as it is perfectly stable at room temperature unlike probiotics.

Once in the colon, Bimuno’s unique dual action selectively targets and feeds the body’s immunity-boosting good bacteria, bifidobacteria, while actively reducing numbers of harmful bacteria.

Bimuno IMMUNAID RRP £9.99 for 30 pastilles. Available from Boots and www.bimuno.com
Find us on Facebook and follow us on twitter @BimunoUK

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

New Year New You – Get fit, eat well, look good, feel good! Advice from Dr Paul Clayton

Feeling sluggish? Want to regain your mojo after the indulgences of Christmas? Made a New Year’s resolution to get fit, eat well, look good and feel good?

Dr Paul Clayton chairs the Scientific Advisory Boards of Itogha (Norway) and BiotheraPharma (USA), is a Fellow of the Institute of Innate Immunity (Osaka) and the Institute of Food, Brain & Behaviour (Oxford), a former Chair of the Forum on Food and Health at the Royal Society of Medicine and former Senior Scientific Advisor to the UK Government's Committee on the Safety of Medicines. He says the New Year should start from within.

“People should be more aware of the fatty acids in their diet”, says Dr Clayton, “as these largely determine whether the environment in the body is pro- or anti-inflammatory. All chronic diseases have inflammation at their core, and the huge increases we have seen in cardiovascular disease and cancer over the last century are closely related to increasing intakes of Omega 6 fatty acids (in vegetable oils), and a decline in Omega 3 fatty acids (in oily fish). This imbalance is also strongly linked to increasing rates of mental illness.

'Women are particularly vulnerable. They tend to have worse outcomes with cardiovascular disease; they are more likely to suffer from depression, or at the hands of men with mental illness; and an unhealthy fatty acid balance during pregnancy may substantially affect the unborn baby's brain, with major consequences in later life.'

To ensure your body gets the correct balance Dr Clayton, working with 4Life and St. Olav’s Hospital, Trondheim University Hospital, Norway has introduced the 4Life Test. Available on the internet and extremely easy to use, this test measures the profile of 11 fatty acids in your blood and precisely calculates the Omega-6/Omega-3 balance. Processed by highly qualified staff at Trondheim University Hospital, the blood tests are used to calculate each individual’s vulnerability to lifestyle related problems.

The result is sent anonymously via www.itogha.com . Assistance interpreting the results can be obtained if needed from GPs or other health professionals and can be used to guide lifestyle and dietary choices to improve the balance of Omega-3 and Omega-6 levels and thus enhance health and well-being.

The 4Life Test is an MOT for the body. Make an online pit stop and ensure your body is in balance to give you the best New Year ever.

Further information on the 4Life Test see 4Life Test

Monday, 19 December 2011

Scarborough Acute NHS Trust Uses New Technology To Reduce Patient Mortality Ratios

• NHS Trust deploys QlikView Business Discovery platform to gain a clearer view of patient data and aid in daily decision-making

Infrastructure and software solutions Value Added Reseller, Trustmarque, announced today that it has successfully deployed QlikView, a business intelligence tool, to help Scarborough Acute NHS Trust connect and compile data from its different information systems to aid in critical clinical decision making to help reduce mortality ratios.

Scarborough Acute NHS Trust is a North Yorkshire based healthcare and NHS trust which delivers hospital services to a population of 240,000. Employing 2,400 staff, it is the largest employer in the area. The Trust was looking for a new tool to help connect and pull data from its various different information systems to enable its clinicians, managers and consultants to easily create visual reports, charts and tables that would help them in their day-to-day decision making to improve not only clinical care, but also help them to monitor more closely and bring down mortality rates.

“Excel was pervasive within the organisation but the reports became instantly out of date and were difficult to maintain,” explains Manni Imiavan, Head of Information, Directorate of Finance & Procurement. “We had a number of different tools in play which all had strengths and weaknesses, but none seemed to tick all the boxes.”

Scarborough had a longstanding relationship with Trustmarque so it was the first port of call when looking to procure a dashboard tool. Trustmarque first provided Scarborough with consultancy to better understand its business objectives and then information and demonstrations on a selection of tools that it felt would meet the needs of the Trust.

“After speaking with our account manager and Business Intelligence Practice Lead they were able to identify a range of products that we hadn’t considered, one of them being QlikView,” comments Imiavan. “What really sold us on QlikView was the fact that Trustmarque was actually able to provide us with a demo of the product using dashboards created specifically for the NHS.”

Following the selection of QlikView, Trustmarque also provided Scarborough with the technical support required to ensure the smooth deployment of the new technology across the organisation.

Imiavan continues: “In December 2010 we started getting quotes and within four weeks QlikView was implemented within our Trust. Trustmarque provided technical support and conducted onsite training at the time of installation, and those who attended benefited hugely. Users could start building bespoke dashboards for different clinical directorates within the Trust straight away and were also able to pass on their knowledge to those who hadn’t received the Trustmarque training. The value of Trustmarque really is in its service offering.”

QlikView is now pervasive across the Scarborough NHS Trust and has been used to automate waiting list management and enhance KPI reporting. QlikView has allowed service users to interact with their own data in a way they have never been able to do before.

“Clinicians and senior managers now use QlikView daily to help in decision making. It provides a view of key information from all case notes and clinical reviews, can be used to drill down patient pathways and disseminate information. As a result, clinicians are able to compile more accurate and current data on mortality ratios due to the enhanced self-service analysis and increased visibility of patient information. All our clinical divisions also now rely on QlikView dashboards for performance management,” states Imiavan.

“There’s no doubt it has saved us money and a lot of time. At one point we had seriously considered getting external people in to do our dashboards, which would have cost us £500 per day. With the training we have received from Trustmarque we have been able to do everything in-house. The investment we have made in QlikView has undoubtedly been one of the most significant strategic decisions taken over the past few years.”

“Business intelligence can help health managers get the most out of the data available. Health care institutions are not short of information, but the challenge lies in making this data usable and being able to understand what it means, and this is where QlikView can play its part,” concludes Mike Cawthorn, Practice Lead for Trustmarque’s Business Performance Management team.

“With increasing targets to improve patient care, coupled with reduced budgets, it is a very hard time for the NHS. Using technology to reduce the burden of reporting and to give a clearer view to support a business case for investment is critical at this time and we would strongly urge all institutions to take Scarborough’s lead.”

Sean Farrington, RVP Northern Europe & MD UK & Ireland at QlikTech, added, “The ability to access, analyse and use data and information is vital across all businesses and organisations. Having the tools to enable all users to gain quick and easy visibility of the latest information in real-time is the next step in the discovery phase, and seeing the QlikView Business Discovery platform in action across the Scarborough NHS Trust means that all users will be empowered in the critical decision-making that goes into reducing waiting times and mortality rates.”

FACTFILE:
Trustmarque is a market-leading Value Added Reseller and provider of technology services and solutions to UK private and public sector organisations. Trustmarque has been a trusted advisor to customers on issues relating to technology for over 24 years, helping companies to make sense of their complex IT environments by unlocking the value of technology, improving efficiencies and reducing costs.

Trustmarque holds ISO9001/2000, ISO14001, OHSAS18001 and ISO27001 certifications, is OGC accredited and has achieved the Investors in People standard. In addition Trustmarque’s employees are ITIL and PRINCE2 qualified.

Trustmarque has also worked with The CarbonNeutral Company (formerly Future Forests) leaders in the field of carbon management and climate change solutions to become a CarbonNeutral® company.

For details on how Trustmarque can help your hospital or service, visit www.trustmarque.com, call 0845 2101 500, or email: info@trustmarque.com.

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Back to school boost for the New Year

Sending your kids back to school after the winter break can be a daunting prospect for some parents with the inevitable onslaught of colds and bugs. Well thanks to the natural protection of an old playground favourite protecting your little one could be a whole lot easier.

Rosehips have long been associated with making homemade itching powder, but evidence shows that extracts of this unique fruit could help build a stronger immune system and keep bugs at bay.

Rosehips are crammed with substances called bioflavonoids, which are known to be powerful anti-oxidants shown to protect the body against harmful substances and help the immune system react appropriately to viruses and allergens.

That’s not all though, surprisingly for a fruit, rosehips also contain calcium, and are jammed full of vitamins, including more vitamin C per gram than citrus fruits and a high amount of vitamin B3, or niacin, which important for the digestive system and converting food into energy; helping explain why rosehips have traditionally been used to help keep upset tummies away.

Don’t worry you don’t have to start squeezing rosehip fruits to get your children the benefits of the oil. Several children’s rosehip supplements are now available under the brand Belrosa - Belrosa Rosehip Syrup with added vitamins C&D, Belrosa Rosehip Syrup with added multivitamins, and Belrosa Rosehip Syrup with added omega 3.

Each presents an easy and convenient way for your child to get all the benefits of rosehip with the added bonus of the additional vitamins or omega 3. So if you are looking for a way to keep your little one in the class room and not at home in the New Year then please visit www.belrosa.com.

Saturday, 17 December 2011

Sick workers struggle in to work for fear of their jobs

The winter ‘sicky’ – that age-old term for when workers exaggerate cold and flu-like symptoms to get time off work – looks to be catching a cold.

A new study by Fisherman’s Friend has found that workers are now so concerned about lack of job security that they will trudge into work even when genuinely ill, so as to impress the boss and underline their commitment to the job.

Fisherman’s Friend, which quizzed over 1,000 adults, found that half of workers had not taken a single day off sick so far in 2011 because of a cold or flu – despite falling ill with such illnesses on three occasions already this year.

What’s more, the average number of days taken off sick due to such illnesses is now just two days a year – half the number when Fisherman’s Friend conducted its last cold and flu survey three years ago.

REGION PERCENTAGE
National 49%
North-East 25%
North-West 39%
Yorkshire/Humberside 33%
East Midlands 54%
West Midlands 42%
East of England 61%
Greater London 33%
South-East 54&
South-West 67%
Wales 69%
Scotland 66%
Northern Ireland 49%
Table reflecting % of workers that have taken no sick days in 2011

The dramatic fall in cold and flu absenteeism means that such illnesses are estimated to have cost UK plc a mere £4.6 billion in 2011 – compared with more than £9 billion three years ago. Workers’ top two reasons for battling on even when ill were ‘concerns over job security’ and ‘not wanting to let colleagues down’, which together polled more than 90% of the vote.

“Our survey makes interesting reading because the figures show the difference in workers’ attitudes to sickness and job security in just three short years,” said Rob Metcalfe, Fisherman’s Friend spokesman.

“When we carried out our last study, fears over job security were not a strong factor, but we are now several years into the economic downturn, and with warnings of even tougher times ahead no one wants to be singled out as a weak link at work.

“All we can advise is that people try and guard against the worst symptoms once a cold or flu starts to appear – such as sucking on a well-known brand of lozenge! That way they will feel better equipped even if they choose to struggle on.”

Workers aged between 25 and 34 were found to have had the greatest number of colds and days off in 2011, three apiece, possibly due to hectic lifestyles that revolve around work and play, leaving them more exposed to illnesses such as the common cold.

Workers in the North East were found to have had the most colds – an average of three – while those living and working in Northern Ireland have had the fewest, just two.

Workers in Scotland, Wales and the South West took the least time off when ill in 2011, with more than two thirds from each region declining to take a single day off for a cold or flu.

Meanwhile, the only major difference between men and women still appears to be their perception of how ill they really are when suffering with a cold or flu. Three quarters of men claimed they genuinely thought they suffered more than members of the fairer sex – with more than half of women agreeing with them!

FACTFILE:
• It is the strong menthol and eucalyptus found in Fisherman’s Friend lozenges that help keep winter aliments at bay. In fact, Fisherman’s Friend contains a third more menthol than its rivals. Menthol is widely used to treat colds, as it provides rapid relief from a blocked nose.
• Fisherman’s Friend’s RSP’s are 73p for a 25g packet or £1.39 for a 45g box and is available in leading independent and multiple grocers, pharmacies, newsagents, convenience stores and forecourts.

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Software Europe set to save the NHS thousands of pounds with new app for BlackBerry smartphones

Joins BlackBerry Alliance Program as a Select member

Software Europe, the largest provider of online expenses management solutions for the NHS, today announced plans to bring its expenses application to users on BlackBerry® smartphones. The company also announced it has joined the BlackBerry® Alliance Program as a Select member.

For over 10 years Software Europe has been providing professionals in both the commercial and public sector, with online expenses and contract management solutions. The financial benefits of automating employee expenses are very compelling. For example, the Royal Berkshire NHS Trust reported a massive £100,000 saving in the first ten months of automating their employee expenses online.

Software Europe’s Expenses Health has already been chosen by over 47 NHS organisations with over 140,000 NHS professionals claiming their expenses online, totalling 1.1 million expenses claims per year. Detailed analysis demonstrates that implementing Expenses Health typically delivers Trusts with an average reduction in spend of 15-20%. Using BlackBerry smartphones will greatly enhance the efficiency of the NHS employee expenses process further, being able to record, authorise, reimburse and audit employee expenses away from their desk.

“Joining the BlackBerry Alliance Program comes at an opportune time when we are developing mobile applications for our online solutions,” expresses Neil Everatt, Managing Director of Software Europe. “Being a part of this community is very advantageous and we hope that our expertise as leaders in expenses and contract management will add great value and enhance the service for BlackBerry smartphone users. We pride ourselves in being at the forefront of technology and see this new partnership as another huge leap ahead in offering the very best in cloud technology for our customers.”

As a Select member of the BlackBerry Alliance Program, Software Europe will be able to take advantage of support, development and marketing resources from Research In Motion, to help enhance the mobile offering of Software Europe’s leading SaaS solutions. The use of BlackBerry smartphones is particularly prevalent within the NHS because the solution offers policy controls and high levels of security management. With its membership in the program, Software Europe is aiming to advance its relationships across industry sectors, providing access to an enhanced mobile platform for products already proven to increase efficiencies and make huge cost savings.

Software Europe is looking forward to launching its mobile applications in the new year. The first mobile application for BlackBerry smartphones will provide both private and public sector employees a convenient and fast way to record their expenses while on the move.

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Ocean Spray Your Way To Five A Day

Start your family's day the healthy way with Ocean Spray's new range of 100% Juices. Enjoy a 250ml serving, which conveniently contains one of your five a day portions of fruit and 100% of your recommended daily allowance of Vitamin C, and you can tick off two daily health resolutions at breakfast.

We're all prepared to spend a bit more time seeking out healthier choices to help keep ourselves and our families in shape. And looking after your family's health has never been easier thanks to Ocean Spray's new 100% Juices. You can serve them up, at any mealtime, safe in the knowledge they are free from any artificial additives and preservatives, and there is no added sugar.

With the launch of Ocean Spray's 100% Juices, the nation's number three favourite juice flavour - cranberry - is now available in a pure juice product. Choose from refreshing Cranberry Blend, where the unique taste of cranberry has been cleverly balanced by other naturally sweeter juices, so you get all the fruitiness and sweetness from the fruit - and only the fruit.

Or try refreshing Raspberry & Blackberry with Cranberry and enjoy the taste of sweet raspberries following by a crisp cranberry tang. Reaching one of your family's five a day has never been easier! Joining the new range in Spring 2012 is Blueberry & Pomegranate with Cranberry - combining three popular superfruits in one healthy juice that all the family can enjoy.

Ocean Spray new 100% Juices are available now from ASDA stores nationwide and will be coming soon to other stores too, RRP £1.75 for a 1 litre carton.

For more information and to hear all the latest news, recipes and special offers straight from the cranberry fields visit www.oceanspray.co.uk or join the farmers on facebook.com/oceansprayuk.

Serving suggestion: Enjoy Ocean Spray 100% Juices chilled for fruity refreshment throughout the day, or gently warm 100% Juice in a pan or in the microwave for a soothing start and end to your day.

Detox This New Year With Lull

Start the New Year as you mean to go on… LULL is a healthy, 100% natural, ‘chill-out’ drink, perfect for detoxing this New Year.

Overindulgence during the festive season can leave many of us feeling bloated and lethargic. While the body has an innate tendency to maintain a healthy balance, if its natural detoxifying functions become congested or tired, we can become imbalanced. LULL provides carefully selected valuable and essential nutrients to aid regeneration and restore inner-wellness and balance.

LULL provides life-enhancing vitamins (15% RDA of vitamins (B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B12, C & E), stress-relieving magnesium (15% RDA) and antioxidant protection from the nutrient-rich juices of kiwi, blackberry, blackcurrant and red-grape, all specifically blended to 'soothe mind and body'.

Every 250ml bottle of LULL contains 2000mg of botanical extracts from plants, sourced from around the world. The beneficial properties of the botanicals have been appreciated by cultures around the world for centuries. They include cleansing fennel, relaxing lavender, rejuvenating hibiscus, uplifting green tea, happiness-inducing passion flower, soothing lemon balm, comforting lime blossom, anxiety-fighting jujube, stress-relieving hops, calming chamomile and balancing valerian.

100% natural, LULL is low in calories (just 43 calories per 250ml bottle), contains no added sugar, artificial flavours, colours or preservatives. LULL has a clean and balanced taste, with a subtle natural sweetness. LULL is slow burn and diabetic friendly. No spike = no crash!

LULL comes in a stylish, easy opening aluminium bottle, that not only protects the delicate botanical extracts from UV light, so ensuring they remain in perfect condition, but it’s also environmentally friendly – light, unbreakable and fully recyclable.

LULL is a premium priced drink (recommended price of £1.90 per 250ml bottle) and is available online (www.drinklull.com) and from high-end independent retailers, gyms, beauty salons, spas and wellness centres.

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

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The Detox in a Box. It works


Why not start 2012 with a body free from pollutants? And do it in a safe, easy way!

Starvation diets and expensive therapy treatments are two ways of achieving a detox, but if you want to detoxify the easy way and not spend an absolute fortune in the process, try The Detox Pack by Health Plus, instead!

This handy little box contains all the nutritional supplementation you need in order to de-pollute the body the natural way over a 28 day period.

Detox PackDesigned to take the stress, fuss and misery out of detoxing, the Detox Pack contains 28 little sachets of natural vitamin and mineral tablets/capsules – so you know exactly what you need to take on a daily basis, all without the need of strict diets and colonic irrigation! Simply by taking these carefully selected nutritional supplements, your body will be left cleansed, pure and ready to start a new year afresh.

The unique anti-pollutant formula contains antioxidants, Glutathione and L-Cysteine to gradually remove toxins and heavy metals from the body, allowing your system to cope better with all that modern life has to throw at it.

Simon Bandy, nutritional supplement expert from Health Plus says: “Detoxifying the body is a process which should be carried out every 3-4 months, but it is especially important in the new year if you’ve overdone it with fatty foods and alcohol. This sudden increase in food and alcohol consumption can shock your body as it becomes contaminated with these toxic impurities. Allowing these substances to fester in the body will leave you feeling and looking grey and sluggish. Detoxifying rids your body of this poisonous waste and leaves you feeling energised and invigorated.”

The Detox Pack retails at £13.95 for a 28 day supply and is available from www.healthplus.co.uk and at all good health shops nationwide. These gelatin-free supplements are suitable for vegetarians and free from lactose, wheat, yeast, gluten and sugar.

Company information: Health Plus was established over 20 years ago with a mission to promote optimum nutrition across the world. Family-owned and run since November 1991, the company supplies a wide range of British made, high quality nutritional supplements.

(EDITOR: I have been fortunate enough to try the Detox in a Box and I am pleased to report that I feel sure that it is working. Each daily dose comes in a separate pouch, so that there can be no mistakes with taking too many or not enough of a certain tablet/capsule. Which can be a major worry for some people.

I have been feeling less tired lately and do seem to have more energy and the only different thing I have done is to embark on this Detox in a Box course. It's simple to follow and in my case, has provided some good, positive results.)

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Boot on the other foot with VIVOBAREFOOT

This December the ultimate destination for barefoot movement opens in Central London. Based at Great Marlborough Street for a limited period of time, the first highly anticipated VIVOBAREFOOT pop-up store gives customers a unique opportunity to access a team of experts who, in a few minutes, can revolutionise their everyday movement technique.

VIVOBAREFOOT – the original and authentic barefoot shoe brand since 2003 – is on a mission to reveal the truth about barefoot movement. With the help of certified coaches, the pop-up shop will offer consumers a barefoot consultation in the Training Clinic with video gait and plantar pressure analysis, abolishing the many misconceptions around barefoot once and for all. All VIVOBAREFOOT certified coaches are personally instructed by Lee Saxby, acclaimed the world’s best barefoot coach by author of Born To Run Christopher McDougall.

Modelled on the original VIVOBAREFOOT Experience located on Neal Street, Covent Garden, the pop-up store is a stone’s throw from world famous Liberty department store and the vibrant buzz of Carnaby Street’s flagship stores.

Jonathan Pennington, Marketing Director at VIVOBAREFOOT comments: "We’re delighted to be launching the first ever VIVOBAREFOOT pop-up store and bringing the truth about going barefoot to an even wider audience through this unique environment. There is so much misinformation out there about barefoot movement and with the largest collection of barefoot shoes across performance, lifestyle and kids, we’re excited to be able to truly educate people about how learning to move barefoot can actually have life changing results.

"The hustle and bustle of Great Marlborough Street encompasses all that is great about London life and our spot, that used to be a hairdressers, is quirky enough to catch consumers’ imaginations."

VIVOBAREFOOT makes the most proprioceptive soles in the world giving the wearer the ability for their body to sense the forces acting on it. To learn more visit 14 Great Marlborough Street, London.

www.vivobarefoot.com www.facebook.com/vivobarefootshoes www.twitter.com/vivobarefoot

That's Travel: Final plans in place for Swanage and Purbeck's 3rd...

That's Travel: Final plans in place for Swanage and Purbeck's 3rd...: Organisers are thrilled to announce the launch of the Third Swanage and Purbeck Walking Festival, which will run from April 28th until May ...

Monday, 12 December 2011

40 per cent of hospital medicines ‘involved an error’

A new study published today in the Journal of Advanced Nursing has shown that nearly 40% of observed drug administrations involved errors. Patients with swallowing difficulties were at three times greater risk of medication errors being made . Earlier research has shown that patients with swallowing difficulties (dysphagia) spend 40% longer in hospital than those without dysphagia.

A total of 2129 medicine administrations were observed in a range of different hospitals and 817 involved an error. Medication administration errors for patients with swallowing difficulties involved patients chewing modified release tablets, nurses crushing tablets not authorized to be crushed, mixing medicines together to make them easier to swallow, not flushing tubes between drug administrations and using the wrong syringe to administer medicines down feeding tubes.

Overall, the most common error involved medicines being given at the wrong time, i.e. one hour earlier or later than had been prescribed. Whilst in many cases it is unlikely this would cause any harm, it did include 18 of 49 doses of anti-Parkinson medication being given over an hour late, which could have led to patients with Parkinson’s not having their symptoms adequately controlled and being unable to move, get out of bed or walk down a corridor.

Says Professor David Wright, University of East Anglia who supervised the research: “Whilst the level of errors in patients without swallowing difficulties was no different to that seen by other researchers, it is very apparent that patients with swallowing difficulties seem to be at greater risk of medication administration errors and therefore systems need to be reviewed to improve the quality of their care. Patients should be assessed on their ability to swallow their medication when first admitted to hospital. The results of this study have helped us to pilot new approaches in one of the trusts where observations took place to improve communication between nurses, pharmacists and doctors.”

Daiga Heisters, Head of Professional Engagement and Education at Parkinson's UK, commented: “It's vitally important that people with Parkinson's get their medication on time, every time and we know this can be a particular problem they are admitted to hospital. If people with Parkinson's don't get their medication on time, their symptoms become uncontrolled and their hospital stay is extended. In some cases, this can cause a lasting negative effect on their Parkinson's symptoms.

Our ‘Get it on time’ campaign aims to raise awareness of this issue amongst healthcare professionals and we welcome any initiative which will help people with Parkinson's to get their medication on time.”

Summary of the Research Findings

• 2129 drug administrations observed
• 65 nurse-led medicine administration rounds were openly observed and recorded by the researchers on care-of-the-elderly and stroke wards.
• 34% of the 625 patients observed had swallowing difficulties
• 817 drug administrations involved medication errors
• 170 patients without swallowing difficulties and 133 patients with swallowing problems experienced at least one medication error
• 36 of the 50 patients with an enteral feeding tube experienced at least one error
• 36.7% of anti-Parkinson medication was given over an hour late

Summary of medication errors in patients with swallowing difficulties

• 54.3% Medication given at the wrong time
• 19.8% Wrong preparation
• 9.6% Wrong form
• 6.7% Drug not given
• 2.2% Wrong dose
• 0.7% Wrong drug
• 0.3% Extra dose

www.parkinsons.org.uk

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Treat Tired Party Season Eyes with Gingerlily’s Sumptuously Soft Silk Eye Mask

Gingerlily, designers of luxury silk bedding and bedroom accessories, has created a beautiful silk eye mask which has numerous beauty benefits, to sooth tired eyes after the festive fun of the party season.

Covered in and filled with 100 per cent 'A' grade Mulberry silk, a naturally anti-static fibre, Gingerlily’s silk eye mask helps to prevent fine lines and wrinkles, especially on the delicate skin around the eyes, by decreasing friction which traumatises the skin.

Silk also contains amino acids, which help skin retain moisture, keeping it plumped and looking revitalised.

Available in Striking Black with contrasting Nude Pink piping, Gingerlily's 100% silk eye mask makes the perfect stocking filler gift, or a beauty treat for yourself.

To order, please visit www.gingerlily.co.uk or call 0843 216 9902.

FACTFILE:
Gingerlily, designers of exquisite silk filled duvets, bedding and accessories for the ultimate night’s sleep. Made from only the finest ‘A’ grade mulberry silk and designed in-house, Gingerlily products can help you to create the ultimate glamorous bedroom – a haven in which to retreat and be cocooned from the outside world.

Silk has many other health and beauty benefits. It is a naturally hypoallergenic fibre. The main cause of allergies is dust mites. Silk, however, is resistant to dust mites making it ideal for allergy sufferers.

As well as helping relieve allergy sufferers, silk has been recognised for its soothing properties and its ability to help prevent and aid the recovery of skin irritations, poor circulation, arthritis, asthma and night sweats.

Gingerlily’s stunning range includes bed linen, bedding, cushions and nightwear as well as a range of bedding and accessories for children. These beautiful designs will not only transform your bedroom into a luxurious sanctuary but gives you the ultimate health and beauty sleep every night.

Louis Walsh hair transplant by Dr Maurice Collins of Hair Restoration Blackrock (HRBR).

Last Saturday, 10th December, Louis Walsh confirmed in The Times that he has had a hair transplant procedure.
Hair Restoration Blackrock (HRBR) can confirm that Louis Walsh was treated by Dr Maurice Collins. Dr Maurice Collins is founder and Medical Director of HRBR.

Dr Collins commented today - “Louis Walsh has decided to let it be known to the public that he has had a hair restoration procedure, carried out here at Hair Restoration Blackrock. Like James Nesbitt he has spoken about his hair surgery to try and encourage other men who have hair loss issues to seek proper advice regarding their concerns.

When Wayne Rooney made it known that he had hair transplant surgery carried out in the summer of this year, he did a huge amount to remove the stigma that was associated with hair loss and hair restoration surgery.

The general public frequently interpret hair transplantation as a cosmetic 'vanity' procedure. Nothing can be further from the truth as it brings about an improvement in self-esteem and self confidence, and also an inner contentment. To give you an idea of the extensiveness of hair loss, a few stats: 30% of men at 30 are affected, 40% at 40 and 50% at 50.

We would like to congratulate Louis Walsh on his ongoing success with the X Factor.”

HRBR is based in Blackrock Co. Dublin, Ireland, and is Europe’s only dedicated purpose built hair transplant clinic. Dr Collins consults in Dublin and London.

Hair Restoration Blackrock (www.hrbr.co.uk) is a specialist hair transplant clinic founded 8 years ago by Dr. Maurice Collins at the Blackrock Clinic in Dublin. Maurice Collins is an Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) surgeon by training with 25 year experience at the Blackrock Clinic in ENT. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons London, Dublin and Edinburgh. His two surgeon colleagues are also fellows of the Royal College of Surgeons (UK and Ireland). In 2007 HRBR moved to a dedicated purpose built facility at Samson House in Dublin.

Dr Collins’ interest in hair transplant surgery started eight years ago. Dr Collins has trained and studied internationally in this specialist subject with some of the best experts in the world. Dr Collins and his team regularly attend, and participate in, the annual conferences of the International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery (ISHRS) and the European Society of Hair Restoration Surgery (ESHRS). Dr Collins contributes to the ISHRS Hair Transplant Forum International bi-monthly newsletter and was named ‘Surgeon of the Month’ in May/June 2007.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

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Wednesday, 7 December 2011

B rejuvenated – natural food supplement is a tournament winners dream

All sporting enthusiasts, amateur or professional, will have an injury story to tell.

Previous back pain sufferer Golfer Carl Mason, winner of 25 titles including European Seniors Tour Order of Merit had to back out of a number of tournaments early in the 2011 season and constantly had the thought of not winning a tournament at the back of his mind.

Mason experienced a breakthrough following an appointment with his orthopaedic specialist and happily says “I have been taking B rejuvenated Pure Collagen Capsules for over 3 months now and the difference has been quite remarkable. Taking them religiously every day, I can now say that I have full mobility.”

Collagen, the body supporting protein, begins to deplete naturally from the age of 25. The intake of hydrolysed collagen - especially in the high bio-available form of B rejuvenated - has been found to restore collagen levels and thereby help repair ligaments, cartilage and bon as well as reduce joint pain.

Mason adds “For all of you club golfers and pros alike, who suffer little niggles or more serious discomfort during your game, I can thoroughly endorse B rejuvenated Pure Collagen Capsules as an adjunct to keeping supple and helping to repair your joints and muscle sprains you might get not just through playing as a result of war and tear over the years! Most importantly the collagen is pure and contains NO performance enhancing drugs that we might get tested for under tournament rules.”

To learn more about B rejuvenated Pure Collagen visit www.alicsur.com

SEHTA welcomes new government plan for telecare

SEHTA, the South East Health Technologies Alliance, has welcomed the Prime Minister’s announcement that telecare and telehealth systems will be rolled out to the homes of three million people over the next five years as part of a plan to help patients and reduce costs.

On Tuesday this week (6 December), David Cameron launched “3 Million Lives”, a campaign that aims to enhance the lives of millions of people with chronic conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease, by accelerating the rollout of telecare and telehealth services across England.

In support of the campaign, the Department of Health has published headline findings from Whole Systems Demonstrator, an extensive trial of telecare and telehealth services delivered to 6,000 people. Findings from the study showed a 45% reduction in mortality rates, 20% reduction in emergency admissions, 15% reduction in A&E visits, 14% reduction in elective admissions and 14% reduction in bed days.

SEHTA has been focused on the telecare and telehealth market for the past three years.

In September 2009, SEHTA established its pioneering International Centre for Excellence in Telecare (ICE-T), a market-led approach to telecare and telehealth. Since its launch, ICE-T has grown to become a dynamic network of more than 1,500 contacts in companies, medicine and academia in the UK and internationally. The initiative has also helped to raise more than £1.5 million for innovative businesses involved in the development and delivery of telecare and telehealth products and services.

“This is a very significant announcement and commitment which we welcome with open arms,” says Dr David Parry, CEO of SEHTA. “Members of the ICE-T have for some time been developing a whole range of innovative products and services that are designed to help people live ways that suit them, their families, and those providing care.

“Our members have also shown how telecare and telehealth can be of significant benefit, not just in terms of assisting people, but helping the NHS and other healthcare providers to achieve greater efficiencies and reduce their costs.

“ICE-T members are ready to help deliver this commitment by government now that the case for telecare and telehealth has been proven through the Whole System Demonstrator.”

Speaking at the launch of the Strategy for UK Life Sciences in London, the Prime Minister, David Cameron, said the aim of the new campaign is to improve three million lives over the next five years. “This is going to make an extraordinary difference to people,” he said. “Diabetics taking their blood sugar levels at home – and having them checked by a nurse. Heart disease patients having their blood pressure and pulse rate checked – without leaving their home.

“This is not just a good healthcare story. It’s going to put us miles ahead of other countries commercially too as part of our plan to make our NHS the driver of innovation in UK life sciences."

To find out more about SEHTA, please visit: www.sehta.co.uk

FACTFILE:

The South East Health Technologies Alliance (SEHTA) is a company limited by guarantee, owned by its 1300 members.

Its mission is to facilitate the profitable and sustainable growth of companies and service providers in health and social care and the health technologies sector – pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, medical devices diagnostics and telelcare/telehealth.

SEHTA drives collaboration and provides support services to members from Academia, Business and Care/Clinicians to address UK and international market needs.

ICE-T - International Centre of Excellence in Telecare

http://www.sehta.co.uk/telecare

ICE-T is a special interest group of SEHTA, which has become an international focal point for Telecare and Telehealth. ICE-T is a facilitating, innovative and catalytic organization created to address and develop the business opportunities for Telecare and Telehealth, alongside meeting the needs of national government agendas to provide more efficient and effective health care using new communications technologies.

ICE-T is underpinned by the strength of South East England’s health technology and communications industries, world-renowned universities and innovative care providers.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Top 10 Christmas Season Weight Management Tips from Jenny Craig

Top 10 Christmas Season Weight Managemen
1. Keep up with physical activity; this helps to tone and keep the metabolic rate going and also helps fight the extra stresses that this time of year brings. It’s not necessary to schedule a solid block of exercise to get a good workout. For example, three 10-minute ‘mini-workouts’ throughout the day are just as good as half an hour of exercise.

2. A common temptation for dieters is to forget about their diet plans altogether after a minor glitch. Falling off the bandwagon is a good opportunity to get right back to the diet. Don’t be tempted just to give it all up!

3. Is there really a need to buy all those Christmas food extras and have them in the house? No one will really miss that massive tin of chocolates, those bags of nuts and packets of mince pies! Not buying them is a great way to avoid temptation. Hosts who do want these traditional extras for guests, should hide them well away from their own appetite.

4. Ask people not to show up with foodie pressies. Ask for perfume, toiletries, handbags and other calorie-free accessories to indulge in.

5. Don’t be tempted to skip meals to make up for previous or future overindulgence! This will only make the eating pattern out of balance, and may even result in hunger and temptation to eat more or the wrong foods.

6. Christmas can be fun but stressful, and people may have less time for themselves. They may be tempted to forget the diet, but shouldn’t this will make them feel rotten and resentful in the longer run.

7. Everyone should give themselves ‘me’ time and some space at this time of year. Treating yourself doesn’t have to involve food. What about a manicure, a long hot bath or a chat to a friend?

8. Having a non-weight loss day on Christmas day is of course perfectly understandable. But don’t go absolutely mad - there are traditional Christmas day foods that are very healthy and low in calories. Indulge in these: turkey meat (no skin), sprouts, carrots, smoked salmon and scrambled egg without too much added fat, fruit with just a few nuts. Don’t overindulge in the roasties, Christmas pudding and mince pies – just have a little taster of these.

9. Christmas doesn’t have to be alcohol free, but don’t forget that alcoholic drinks are quite calorific. More than one drink can also lower people’s mental ‘dieting reserve’, so that their attitude becomes: ‘I don’t care anymore about the diet, pass the nuts and chocolate!’

10. Calorie-rich Christmas leftovers shouldn’t be sitting around in cupboards. Just throw them out. This may seem like a big waste, but to be frank: they will only be wasted sitting around on hips or belly after being consumed!

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Fall For The Comforting Flavours Of Dr Stuart's Beneficial Blends This Winter

If you're thinking of stocking up ready to fight off those winter ailments and ensure your immune system is firing on all cylinders during the coming cold months, you can rest assured that Dr Stuart's remarkable range of warming herbal teas has a beneficial blend to help you every step of the way.

It's a known fact that vitamin C is the most important nutrient in helping to bolster the immune system to help it fight off those unwanted winter coughs, colds and infections; but did you know in order to ensure that vitamin C is working to the max, bioflavanoids (found in a many plants) play a vital role in enhancing its absorption? Trace elements of these powerful vitamins and minerals can be found in many plant sources.

As Dr Stuart's herbal teas are made with 'Active Botanicals, the highest quality herbs from the most prized parts of the plant with the greatest essential oil content possible, why not stock up this winter on Dr Stuart's warming beneficial blends that can help boost your defences, while giving you that feel good factor?

Keep a pack of Dr Stuart's Echinacea Plus handy to help boost your body's natural defences and keep you fighting-fit. This refreshing herbal infusion is packed with hibiscus, peppermint, rosehip and blackberry leaves and enriched with echinacea to boost your immune system and help keep colds at bay.

When it's chilly outside, why not sit back and sip one of the newest blends, Dr Stuart's Elderflower and Lemon to keep you toasty on the inside? For hundreds of years people have looked to the elderflower for its healing properties, as it's thought that the plant can help lower a fever, reduce inflammation and soothe irritation. This fragrant combination will satisfy your palate as well as your body.

If you do succumb to a sore throat, Dr Stuart's offers a simple and altogether more enjoyable way to ease your discomfort. Make yourself a soothing cup of Dr Stuart's Throat Relief and let its blend of comforting herbs including liquorice root, marshmallow root, cinnamon, myrtle leaves and cloves coat your throat and help melt away your symptoms.

For those miserable wintry mornings when it's hard to climb out of bed, Dr Stuart's Detox, packed with the pure natural flavours of dandelion and burdock, sage, ginger, peppermint and spearmint, will help to cleanse and refresh your system from the inside out, giving you just the kick-start you need.

Finally, if you feel like a reviving pick-me-up, make yourself a delectable cup of Dr Stuart's Apple and Ginger tea. Its wonderfully spicy blend of fruity apple and invigorating ginger laced with cinnamon will warm you through and through!

And remember that it's only Dr Stuart's that are made with are made with 'Active Botanicals,' meaning you get the maximum taste and health benefit from each and every cup.

Dr Stuart's herbal teas are available to buy in all major supermarkets, leading health food shops and online from www.baldwins.co.uk and from www.goodnessdirect.co.uk. For more information please visit www.drstuarts.com.

That's Books: Britain's 110 Year Old Teenager Launches Her Autob...

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35 million people cannot hear what's being said on TV

Can't clearly hear what's said on TV? Join the club. Because you and 35 million people are in the same boat, and cannot hear what's being said on TV.

The first study into speech intelligibility on TV has revealed that 71% of UK adults cannot always hear clearly what is being said. The research comprised two studies jointly planned and run in tandem. The first was co-funded by Danish hearing aid manufacturer Widex and Channel 4, and the second was undertaken by the BBC.

8,000 members of the BBC Pulse adult online panel, and 508 non-internet users aged over 65s took part in the study.

The Widex/C4 Study was the brainchild of a trio of retired BBC executives and research specialists. It was conducted to test the hypothesis – based on anecdotal evidence and complaints to the pressure group Voice of the Listener & Viewer - that intrusive background music was obscuring the speech of actors and presenters to the extent that it was impairing intelligibility and understanding.

In the study, 70% of the online adults surveyed recorded problems (59% occasionally, 11% always or often) hearing what was being said. For the over 65s age group this percentage rose to 76% (occasionally 59%, always/often 17%). “This is a worryingly large number of people whose enjoyment of TV programmes is being diminished by not being able to properly hear what is being said,” commented Widex hearing health expert Gary Holland.

However, the biggest surprise revealed by the Widex/C4 Study was that the issue of poor speech intelligibility had much more to do with technical issues during a programmes recording than with the subsequent overlaying of a soundtrack. Detailed analysis of 22 programmes identified as causing difficulties revealed that the majority of audibility problems resulted from the method by which speech is recorded. Adding background music made the audibility worse.

The BBC is so concerned at the findings that it has launched an industry-wide training initiative through the BBC Academy. A series of training modules based on the findings are being made available to the whole broadcasting industry. They will also be used in college courses including the National Film and TV School.

The Widex hearing health expert Gary Holland added: “Being able to hear clearly what people say is a pre-requisite of enjoying and sustaining social interaction. This includes being able to hear the spoken word on TV. Broadcasters and programme makers have got to get their act together to resolve a significant problem. The BBC should be congratulated for the speed with which it has taken on board the findings and the initiative it has launched.”

The full report is available from WidexUK

FACTFILE:

62% of over 65s from the Widex/Channel 4 survey describe the use of background music as reducing their enjoyment of a programme.

Of those over 65s with poor or very poor hearing 99% have difficulties hearing speech clearly on TV even though 61% use hearing aids.

Widex hearing health expert Gary Holland: “Speech intelligibility is one of the Widex keystones. The company strives to improve speech understanding for hearing aid wearers – investing heavily in technology that delivers just that through its hearing aids. But the effectiveness of that technology is seriously compromised if broadcasters are not transmitting speech at the appropriate sound levels. That’s why this project was so important.”
As many as 1 programme in 5 watched by those with poor/very poor hearing presented them with spoken word problems.

Acknowledgements:

The research was supported by Voice of the Listener & Viewer and undertaken with the support and assistance of the BBC and RNID (now called Action on Hearing Loss).

The project was initiated and directed by former BBC executives Dick Bates, Peter Menneer and David Walker.

The research company was GfK NOP.

Louise Willcox MIBS (Partner DWR Associates) also volunteered her services for the audio analysis of the programmes.

The over 65s diary-based study was funded by Danish hearing aid manufacturer Widex, Channel 4 and a private donor.

Friday, 2 December 2011

Scrap All Drink Driving Laws, argues Libertarian body

The Libertarian Alliance, the radical free market and civil liberties think tank and pressure group, today calls on the British Government to repeal all laws against drinking and driving. Drivers should be free to drink as much alcohol as they like before and while driving. The Police should be allowed to intervene only if a driver appears from his actions to be a danger to other road users, or if he causes an accident.

Dr Sean Gabb, Director of the Libertarian Alliance, said: "The current law on drinking and driving is a prior restraint law. It can only be enforced by indiscriminate stops and searches. Most of the drivers stopped are not driving erratically and do not test positive. This is a breach of the Common Law prohibition of searches and seizures, except by judicial warrant and on evidence of some specific criminal behaviour.

"Moreover, every officer assigned to looking for drivers over the limit is one officer fewer to catch real criminals. This is specially the case at Christmas, which has lately become carnival a time for burglars and muggers. There are fewer officers around to deter them, and fewer to go looking for them after the event.

"Much of the propaganda against drinking and driving has nothing to do with reducing injuries to life and property, and everything to do with making it harder to enjoy a drink in good company.

"If we want to reduce the number of deaths on the roads, drinking and driving should not in itself be a crime. It should be possible for a person to drink a bottle of whisky, get into a car and drive away - and the authorities should have no power to stop this.

"Punishment should only come if a driver is so erratic that he is plainly dangerous - or if an accident is caused. But it should then in this latter case be very severe punishment.

"In general, we believe in real punishments for real crimes. Unless a real crime can be shown, we believe in telling the police to mind their own business."

(EDITOR: That's Health carries this story as a matter of public interest. Please do leave comments to this story.)

Synuron announces Central Surrey Health as first Non-NHS Member

Central Surrey Health, a co-owned social enterprise based in Ewell that provides therapy and community nursing on behalf of the NHS to residents of central Surrey, has signed up for Synuron membership, making them its 1st non-NHS organisation and 9th member in total.
Synuron, also a social enterprise, offers membership to organisations working in the health, social care and charity sectors and gives them access to membership benefits including innovative technology, knowledge and a support network to help them save money by streamlining and improving their HR and recruitment processes.

Mary O’Shea, Executive Lead for HR at Central Surrey Health, said, "We're very positive about joining Synuron and have great expectations of the system. We are looking forward to taking advantage of some of the membership benefits available such e-Recruitment and e-Disclosure systems. We also hope to use the benchmarking and knowledge sharing available from other members. This membership is part of our aim to revolutionise healthcare in our community by applying new ideas to old problems and working smarter as a result."

She added, “Since 2006, we’ve had the freedom to use public funding in a more innovative way and have subsequently improved the services we offer. Joining Synuron is another step in this direction and fits with our approach of continuously improving the way we do things. .”

Marilyn Gardner at Synuron commented, “Central Surrey Health is our 1st non-NHS member, which is a significant landmark for us. We’ll be looking at how we can apply our methods, technologies and best practise approaches to streamline their HR and recruitment process to save money and make them more efficient in patient care.”

She added, “This is an example of how Synuron, as a social enterprise, is addressing some of the most complex challenges facing organisations and using innovative solutions that give a return to the wider community. For anyone hiring more than 50 people a year that is still using a ‘paper-based’ recruitment process or outdated online solution, find out how you could benefit from a Synuron membership by visiting www.synuron.org”.

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Give your skin some TLC!

Skin expert Salcura announces the launch of Zeoderm, a sensitively formulated skin repair moisturiser containing ZeomaZ, a new active super-antioxidant for advanced skin relief leading to the regeneration of healthy skin cells.

ZeomaZ is a sensitively processed form of Zeolite, a naturally occurring micro-particle used as a purifying agent in drinking water and medicinal processes. Zeolites have many applications and are unique in the natural world by their ability to absorb toxins and heavy metals through a process of ionic-exchange.

ZeomaZ delivers intense detoxification by hunting down nasty toxins, free radicals and other impurities in the skin, binding and eliminating them from the dermis1. Reducing these impurities soothes, rebalances and gently calms the skin2/3. Removing the nasties enables the skin to provide a more controlled immune response to a skin problem like eczema, therefore avoiding excessive itching and skin aggravation. In the case of psoriasis, ZeomaZ reduces the increased skin cell production by correcting the skin’s faulty immune signaling which causes the excess skin cells.

Zeoderm is perfect for anyone living in the city and exposed to pollution or chemicals, or for those with skin affected with eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis or itchy inflammation wanting more active relief for their symptoms.

Complementing the active antioxidant affect of ZeomaZ, Salcura ZeodermTM contains a gentle yet effective blend of all natural ingredients such as urea, borage, geranium and rose oil which help to soften skin (see ‘Data sheet’ below for list of other ingredients and their benefits).

Zeoderm is totally free from any steroids, cortisones, parabens, alcohol and other nasties. Not tested on animals. Priced £8.99 for 50ml and available from Boots, leading pharmacies and via www.salcuraskincare.com.

Access Legal contributes to 'Aspire' charity

Access Legal, the consumer brand of national law firm Shoosmiths, has raised in excess of £30,000 for Aspire, a charity that provides practical support for individuals suffering spinal cord injuries. The charity is one of the firm's 2010 nominated charity partners.

Access Legal had originally pledged to raise £25,000 for Aspire, but exceeded its initial pledge by an £5,000. This donation will allow Aspire to pursue its mission to help people with spinal cord injuries live their life as well as they can.

The fundraising effort involved a variety of events, including challenges that the Access Legal staff underwent in exchange for sponsorship from friends, family and co-workers. Some staff members went sky diving to raise money for the cause, while others participated in a 10k fun run.

One of the most difficult challenges completed by Access Legal staff was a sponsored swim across the English Channel. Additionally, employees of Access Legal took part in a rugby game against the London Wheelchair Rugby team and some staff members underwent the 177-mile Offa's Dyke challenge.

The Aspire charity's mission ties in closely with the Access Legal brand, which provides personal injury claim services for people who have suffered spinal cord injuries. At the opening of Aspire's newest specialist home for those paralysed through spinal injury, members of Access Legal's staff were in attendance to show the support for the charity's cause. 

The staff members who attended the opening event for Aspire's Buckingham House included: catastrophic injuries expert Chris McKinney, mixed liability department head Sarah Lake, trainee solicitor Oliver Spicer and campaign assistant Georgia Baillieu.

Every year people across the UK suffer from spinal cord injuries, which can cause partial or full paralysis. Such injuries are often caused by road traffic accidents, but may also be a result of falls or sport-related contact. Access Legal from Shoosmith is determined to offer the victims of spinal injuries the legal services they deserve and to help its charity partner, Aspire, provide them with specialist living facilities.

FATFILE:
Access Legal from Shoosmiths is the new consumer brand of top 30 national law firm Shoosmiths. From offices in Basingstoke, Birmingham, Manchester, Milton Keynes, Northampton, Nottingham, Reading and Southampton, access legal from Shoosmiths offers more than 100 legal services to individuals, including access to no win no fee solicitors

Services have been grouped under seven headings: conveyancing; legal disputes; medical negligence; motoring law; personal injury; and wills, family and wealth. Access Legal from Shoosmiths makes it easier for people to get specialist advice from legal professionals. Shoosmiths has more than 150 years' experience and advises household name corporate clients.

www.access-legal.co.uk

Win a trip to NYC for New Year's Eve with Bio-Synergy

What better way to kick off 2012 than in the city that never sleeps? With New Year’s Eve fast approaching, innovative sports nutrition company Bio-Synergy wants to send you and a friend to the New York City for a week of adventure, fun, and new beginnings.

The New Year is a time for second chances and a clean slate. As part of this amazing competition, Bio-Synergy wants you to consider the big question – is this New Year the time for a New You?

Along with the release of the star-studded film New Year’s Eve on December 8th, Bio-Synergy wants you to head to New York to brush shoulders with the stars and turn the page on a new and healthier lifestyle.

Working for an improvement in body image and physique is the Number One resolution of the New Year. Though resolutions are easier made than fulfilled, Bio-Synergy can provide you with the fitness plan, eating advice, and scientific nutrition to make your goals stick in 2012.

Bio-Synergy is the most innovative sports nutrition company in the UK. For over 15 years they have been giving satisfied customers a straightforward and honest approach to nutrition and fitness. They don’t promise miracle solutions. They provide the highest-quality tools and advice your body needs to be healthy, strong, and toned.

Whatever your goals, visit www.bio-synergy.co.uk for great ideas and suggestions on how to meet and exceed your goals. From weight loss to weight gain, and muscle bulking to slimming down, the professionals at Bio-Synergy have you covered.

What are you waiting for? In 2012, Make It Happen with Bio-Synergy.

Bio-Synergy has been producing supplements locally in the UK for 15 years. Under the direction of CEO Daniel Herman, Bio-Synergy pioneered a number of innovative products including a two-phase programme of Creatine and women’s Skinny products that have cemented its position as one of the top sports supplement and lifestyle nutrition companies in the country.

Bio-Synergy products start at £12.99 and range up to £39.99

Facebook link for the competition:
http://www.bio-synergy.co.uk/newyearseve.php

New Year’s Eve Website:
www.newyearseve-movie.com

E-Lites prove to be a popular hit in the East End


E-Lites on EastendersEastender’s fans switched on to their favourite soap last night to be greeted by the UK’s leading electronic cigarettes, E-Lites, which appeared on the show for the second time this year.
The show’s millions of viewers were re- introduced to the electronic cigarettes, which are healthier, cheaper and less restricted than tobacco cigarettes, by Roxy’s shady solicitor who lit up in the popular Café on Albert Square.

Before taking a puff on the smoking alternative, with its signature green light, the character who has been brought in to help Roxy win custody of her child with Jack Branning, turned to onlookers and said: “My first one of the day”. However, he need not be worried, as E-Lites contain no tar, tobacco or harmful chemical ingredients that are found in conventional cigarettes.

Those in the café enjoying breakfast didn’t need to panic either, as E-Lites produce only a harmless vapour and no nasty odour, meaning they can be smoked almost anywhere.

Adrian Everett, one of the founders and directors of E-Lites, said: “As the UK’s leading electronic cigarette brand, we were delighted to be asked to supply E-Lites to the makers of EastEnders. Seeing the electronic cigarettes being featured for a second time on the show, just shows how widely accepted they are becoming. The fact that these can be smoked almost anywhere and are much healthier and cheaper than traditional tobacco cigarettes, makes them an ideal alternative for both the world of soap as well as in reality.”

For details visit www.e-lites.co.uk

E-Lites (www.e-lites.co.uk) was established in the UK in 2007 and is already a leader in its field, producing some of the most advanced electronic cigarettes on the market. The company is expanding nationally and internationally as demand grows for its innovative products.

These are the result of extensive UK research and development. The evolution of E-Lites has been supported by significant investment in design and testing to ensure its electronic smoking devices are made to the highest standards and deliver the most authentic and luxurious smoking sensation possible. The company’s manufacturing facility uses the latest state of the art micro-electronic technology, ensuring E-Lites set the standard within the electronic smoking industry. E-Lites are globally patented, internationally trademarked, and are backed by an international parts replacement guarantee.

E-Lites have attracted the interest of numerous celebrities. Musicians and singers at the 2010 Royal Variety Performance were introduced to E-Lites, with members of N’Dubz, Take That, Jamie Cullum and Russell Watson among the stars fascinated by the product. E-Lites were also included in backstage goodie-bags at the Brit Awards 2011.

One of the directors of E-Lites, Michael Ryan is also chairman of the Electronic Cigarette Industry Trade Association (ECITA), a representative body which provides advice, guidelines and support to members, as well as working to ensure the correct regulatory framework is applied to such products. For more information, visit www.ecita.org.uk

Monday, 28 November 2011

British designed and manufactured lens corrects life-long sight problems and restores confidence for 59-year-old Jill Lang

HR advisor and corporate coach Jill Lang’s vision problems were so severe that she had relied on glasses, contact lenses and ultimately a combination of the two since early childhood. But as cataracts worsened her sight even further, Jill discovered a special kind of implant and eye surgery – designed by Queen’s Award for Industry award-winner, Rayner Intraocular Lenses - that would leave her glasses-free for the first time in 55 years.

The self-employed home-worker from Cirencester became one of a small number of patients to receive a made-to-order T-flex Toric intraocular lens (IOL) from the Sussex-based lens manufacturer this year. The operation has enabled her to see clearly without glasses for the first time since early childhood, restoring not only her sight but also her confidence: “I’ve gone from needing glasses to see things right in front of my eyes, to barely needing glasses at all.

“It is wonderful – being able to walk around the house and see everything clearly, and also being able to look out of the windows and see everything in the distance just with my eyes and no glasses or contact lenses. Losing your sight really ebbs away at your confidence – you start to question what may happen in the future. I’ve got rid of my cataracts and gained great vision at the same time.”

Jill, who has been extremely shortsighted her whole life struggled to see the blackboard when she was just four years old. After relying on glasses for day-to-day vision for over a decade, she received one of the first rigid multicurve contact lenses when she was 17 years old. The multicurve contact lens – a then revolutionary optical aid – had a special aspheric shape to minimise visual disturbances, while providing a convenient glasses-free method of seeing clearly. However after time, these hard lenses were damaging Jill’s eyes and she was moved onto soft gas permeable contact lenses, which worked for some time but 10-15 years later, they just weren’t strong enough.

At this point, Jill was prescribed a combination of contact lenses and glasses to correct her vision and enable her to go about her everyday life. “It was an expensive option, but it absolutely kept me going,” she explains. A couple of years ago, Jill developed cataracts, and was once again was plagued with severe vision problems.

This time, however, seeking treatment for her cataracts presented Jill with the unique opportunity of also correcting her lifelong shortsightedness and astigmatism with a tailor-made toric intraocular lens (IOL). The T-flex is an injectable lens developed specifically to correct astigmatism with high precision, at the same time as providing a clear replacement lens for individuals with cataracts.

Gloucestershire-based consultant eye surgeon Richard Caesar performed Jill’s operation. He said: “For most of our cataract patients we can use ready-made IOLs. Jill fell so far outside the standard IOL power range in both her degree of shortsightedness and astigmatism that she needed an incredibly special lens. She is one of the first patients in this county who has had a Toric IOL implanted for such extreme refractive error and we are delighted with her results.”

He added: “The Rayner IOL is incredibly well made and it is very stable. Once it’s in the eye it doesn’t rotate, which means that it gives you a very predictable result.”

Rayner Intraocular Lenses Chairman and Managing Director, Donald Munro said: “We pride ourselves in being able to design and provide premium-quality bespoke lenses for patients with intricate needs such as those experienced by Jill Lang. To be able to give clear sight and thereby change the life of individuals such as this through excellence in design and manufacture is a large part of what drives us.”

Indeed, Jill, who pre-operatively had very poor respective spherical and cylindrical refractions of -15.50 and -4.75 in her right eye, and -20.00 and -5.00 in her left eye, now has remarkably improved right eye spherical and cylindrical respective refractions of -1.75 and -1.00 in her right eye and -1.00 and -0.75 in her left eye.

Jill explains: "Not many people would underestimate the value of being able to see clearly. My cataracts are gone, and I no longer have to struggle with contact lenses and glasses - it really has been incredible. ”

For more information about Rayner lenses

(EDITOR: As a former cataract sufferer, I can agree that such implants make ALL the difference! And if you have a doctor who says you are too young to have the operation or that your cataract/s are not 'ripe' enough to be treated, then your doctor is 20/30 years behind the times and it might be worth considering changing your doctor.)

Saturday, 26 November 2011

That's Books: Fashions In Eyeglasses By Richard Corson

That's Books: Fashions In Eyeglasses By Richard Corson: Fashions In Eyeglasses is the most comprehensive history of eyewear ever to be published in English, now reissued in an enlarged, updated e...