A Metaphor for Refractive Errors

Almost anything the most beautiful possible can be perceived only through the eyes. The eyes have long been considered as an essential organ for all sighted individuals. The eye is in fact a very complex organ that consist of various delicate parts. Each of these parts describes careful protection. Putting aside its complexity, the eye can be considered as a circle. It is easy to understand that the image of the circle will fall at the opposite side on the margin of the circle if a person shines a candle light in front of the circle. However, people with refractive errors have irregular eye balls. Taking the same example, the image of the candle light falls either in front or far behind the circle because of the irregular shape of the circle itself. This metaphor simply explains the principle of refractive errors. The reason is that those pamphlets are always hard to understand.

Once told to wear a pair of corrective eye glasses, either a child or an adult will probably get agitated or annoyed. However, it is often inevitable while the doctor believes that the glasses are the best solution. Refractive errors including nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism are the exact reasons for the need to use prescription glasses. It is impossible to shrink the eye by making a hole. Nor it is possible to make it enlarge by blowing air into it. Eyeglasses with appropriate powers are now widely used to make the eyes focus properly. Applying these lenses to the same metaphor, they are actually located in between the candle light and the circle. By adding such a lens, the image will fall exactly on the circle. Prescription lenses come with either minus or plus powers, corresponding to farsightedness or nearsightedness respectively. Just get relaxed when you are told to use eyeglasses.

Which Vitamin Supplement is Best for You?

When you're young and healthy, you probably do not need a lot of vitamin supplements to ensure you get the complete nutrition required to keep your body healthy. But as you get older and your body changes, so will your needs. If you do not meet the required vitamin dose you need, your body will use up its store and you'll end up experiencing the symptoms of a vitamin deficiency.

Vitamin deficiency can cause a lot of trouble so why wait until it happens to you? They can range from mild to annoying and can easily turn serious if uncorrected in time. If you want to know what vitamin supplement is best for you, find out what shortcomings you want to avoid and which you want to correct.

What's your deficiency?

If your body is not working as well as it did before, there's a big chance you have some form of vitamin deficiency. Here is a list of vitamins and the shortcomings they prevent or help correct:

Vitamin A

Problems with the eyes and eyesight such as macular degeneration, dry and hard eyeballs, retinal detachment, conjunctivitis and color-blindness. Vitamin A is also good for treating acne, jaundice, skin infections like cold sores, impetigo and boils, warts, skin cancer and scleroderma.

Vitamin C

Cataracts, dim vision, glaucoma and myopia. Vitamin C is also effective against acne, Addison's disease, stress, dry skin, bed sores, jaundice, gangrene, skin itching, prickly heat, rashes, hematoma, wrinkles and shingles.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is indicated for people who are at risk of bone diseases and degeneration such as osteoporosis. Vitamin D is usually found in sunlight and a deficiency may occur due to limited exposure. This vitamin is usually taken with Vitamin C for maximum absorption.

Vitamin E

A very effective antioxidant like Vitamin A, Vitamin E is also used to treat and prevent blisters, bed sores, hot flushes, scar tissue, stretch marks, wrinkles and aging skin.

Vitamin B group

This group of vitamins is sometimes referred to as Vitamin B-complex, composed of 8 B vitamins including B1, B2, B3 (niacin), B6, B12, biotin, folic acid and pantothenic acid. The vitamins in the B group, whether alone or in combination are effective against wounds, cataracts, glaucoma, retinitis, night blindness, photophobia, Addison's disease, skin ulcers, eczema, dermatitis, seborrhea, pale skin, rosacea, dandruff, graying hair and other problems with the skin and nails.
Certain vitamin groups, such as antioxidants like A, E, D and K, are important for preventing free radicals from affecting body cells. Antioxidants effectively maintain the health of cells to prevent damage.

These antioxidants are also fat-soluble vitamins. They are absorbed by the body along with fat sourced from other foods. The vitamin-rich fat is then broken down by the bile and used by the body. If you take too much, the excess vitamins are stored in your liver and kidneys.

Water-soluble vitamins like Vitamins C and B, on the other hand, are easily absorbed. If you take more than your body needs, these vitamins are simply excreted through urine.

The danger of too much of a good thing

You do not have to worry about overdosing on water-soluble vitamins because your body knows how to take care of them. It is the fat-soluble type that you should be careful with. Vitamins A, E and D are toxic in high doses for long periods while too much Vitamin K can increase the risk of hemorrhage. If you must use a vitamin supplement, the best thing for you to do is to keep within the recommended daily allowance.

The 5 Best Natural Breast Enlargement Herbs

The Relation of Herbs to Bigger Breasts

Specific herbs appeared to be invaluable when it comes to increasing breast size naturally. In general, the phyto-estrogens present in herbs are solely responsible for this health bonus. Also, it works like estrogen, yielding the same effects without the drawbacks that one could get from surgery. As opposed to surgical procedures, these herbs don’t initiate scarring and other negative results on the body. On top of that, you could virtually find a good number of herbal remedies to be a cup larger by browsing online. Here the some of the best herbs that had been used for centuries as a natural means to increase breast size.

Herbs to Increase Breast Size Naturally

Fenugreek is one of the most well-known herb to increase breast size naturally. It contains seeds generally known as phytoestrogens that function like the estrogen in generating more hormones. Also, it’s one of the most effective prolactin stimulants. Prolactin and estrogen are both essential for beast-development and fenugreek offers you both.

For new mothers, fennel had been utilized for centuries in order to increase breast size and increase milk production. Though, in estrogenic compound, it’s just second to fenugreek. Fennel could also be incorporated in lotion and massaged directly into the breasts or it could also be mixed with tea. It’s rich in phytonutrients and is an ideal herb to increase breast size.

Red clover is another herb that has been used to subdue a variety of illnesses. Nevertheless, its breast-enlarging powers are considered to be second to none. It carries four different phythoestrogens that includes a compound called genistein. This compound is specifically beneficial when it comes to breast development since it binds to estradiol receptors that are related to breast growth.

First discovered by the American Indians to cure female problems, the saw palmetto is known to be quite effective in increasing breast size naturally. Aside from that, it’s also used by males to treat an enlarged prostrate. Due to the fact that it could control excessive production of testosterone, studies indicate that it could also trigger breast growth.

Wild Yam had been utilized for years because of its amazing benefits in women’s reproductive health such as menopausal problems and premenstrual syndrome. Furthermore, it can be taken as a capsule form or as a tea. The powder could be blended with vaginal ointments or creams. It could also be added to your lotion for breast massage. The phytonutrients found in wild yam are similar to the ones found in fenugreeks that stimulates breast growth.

The Potency of Herbs

As a final point, women had been using herbal extracts for thousands of years for breast growth. From ancient medication to modern day technology, there are organic ways to trigger the growth of your breasts. Moreover, research shows that it could be incorporated to psychological healing, especially for ladies who have more compact tissues and feel insecure.

Best of all, fenugreek, fennel, saw palmetto, red clover, and wild yam could easily be found in organic stores or you could order them online. However, it’s not advisable to try all of these herbs at the same time. As much as possible, stick to one herb at a time, or at the most 2-3 herbs. Using a variety of herbs from time to time is the key to continuous breast development.

In case that you’ve felt self anxious in regards to the size of your breast, always remember that you’re not alone. Though, it’s still possible to be a cup size larger through the use of natural methods without undergoing the knife. Read more here about how to make your boobs bigger naturally.

Tips On Writing Great Application Letters for University

Are you looking forward to the exclusion of varsity life but still have to cross the barrier of applying to study? Stress no further! Here's all the information you'll need to ace your application.

Before you start filling out that application form, make sure you've given some thought as to what course you want to pursue, have all the supporting documents ready and know exactly when the deadline for submission is. Now that that's been deal with, let's do this!

Remember when applying for varsity admission, you are basically selling yourself. Each application form provides a space for you to include information about yourself such as your interests; achievements, etc. Do not be shy to use that to market yourself. Remember to mention important things such as your academic achievements, extra curricular activities in which you excelled, leadership roles you acquired and references from important people like your principal, sports coach or head of a society to back you up. These are all very useful in creating that first impression that would open the varsity doors to you.

Not sure if you want to stay at res or not? Take a look at the following questions. If you said yes to many of them – you are ready to take life at res! In your application form should be space for res application as well. Decide on a residence that suits you best and complete that section along with the rest of your application. If it's just not for you, then simply leave it blank.

  • Do not mind sharing a bathroom with other people?
  • Do not mind having a roommate you've never met before?
  • Not distracted easily?
  • Well disciplined and can work on your own schedule?
  • Have set meals day in and out?
  • Be a part of social and fundraising events?

Always remember to check your spelling and grammar and make sure you understand what is expected of you by each question. Submit your application personally and before the deadline in order to have an excuse to visit the varsity and speak to some of the role players that will be giving the verdict on your application.

Times have changed and many institutions have changed from paper applications via the post, fax or personal delivery to online application submissions. This is effective, easy and can save you a lot of time and effort. Here are a few things to take note of before clicking the "submit" button.

In order to make use of the e-application system of an institution you must have a valid email address. Your email address will be used to send you a verification email and your unique student number to continue with your electronic application. If you do not have one yet, then why not open a free Yahoo, Gmail or Live account today. Also be aware of the submission deadlines for online applications as they may differ from traditional form applications.

Also note that you can not submit your application electronically if you have already submitted a hard copy to the institution. One submission is more than enough to get you access to the varsity.

Treatment for Sex Addiction: Psychodynamic Therapy

In my opinion, long-term psychodynamic therapy is the most efficient way to cultivate healthy personality development. The most comprehensive treatment combines the empathy, insight and relational abilities of a psychodynamic psychotherapist with the 12-step orientation and cognitive-behavioral strategies of an addiction specialist.

What IS Psychodynamic Psychotherapy?

The primary focus of psychodynamic treatment is on patients’ internal structural deficits rather than on their addictive symptoms. Besides compensating and repairing deficits in the self stemming from childhood misattunements with early caretakers, it may also be the most appropriate treatment to help individuals cope with life stressors and painful emotional states that contribute to urges to engage in addictive sexual behavior.

The focus of this type of therapy is to enhance individuals’ self-regulation and self-care, and to foster their capacity for meaningful interpersonal connections. Psychotherapy serves these goals by facilitating the development of healthy ways to regulate emotional self-states, for getting appropriate needs met in reality, for resolving inner conflicts, and for taking care of oneself in a spectrum of areas.

Integration of the patient’s personality is an important element of psychodynamic therapy. Sex addicts live in two worlds; the “normal” world of work and love and the “secret world” of sexual acting out. This split in the personality results in the addict having different value systems and goals for each part of the personality. Psychodynamic treatment promotes personality integration by bringing together under the light of consciousness the split, denied, dissociated and repressed aspects of the person’s mental functions. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde finally become one.

Some General Principles of Psychodynamic Therapy

Focus is on affect and expression of emotions. The therapist helps the patient describe and put words to feelings, including contradictory feelings, feelings that are threatening, and feelings that the patient may not initially be able to acknowledge.

Exploration of attempts to avoid distressing thoughts and feelings.

Knowing, but not knowing at the same time is the result of various defenses the person uses to remain unaware. One aspect of this type of therapy is actively focusing and exploring these avoidances. Patient and therapist chip away at defenses so unconscious material can be brought to consciousness where there is a chance of changing and adapting to reality.

Identification of recurring themes and patterns. Self-defeating patterns in patients’ thoughts, feelings, self-concepts, relationships and life experiences are put under a microscope.

The past is alive in the present. Past experience, especially early family-of-origin issues, affects our relation to, and experience of, the present. The goal is not just to dwell on the past for its own sake, but rather to help people free themselves from the bonds of past experience in order to live more fully in the present.

Focus on interpersonal relationships

Psychodynamic therapy emphasizes patients’ interpersonal experience. Problematic interpersonal patterns interfere with a person’s ability to meet emotional needs.

Exploration of the entirety of mental life. Patients are encouraged to say whatever comes to mind. Thoughts can range over various aspects of mental life, including desires, cravings, fears, fantasies, dreams and daydreams. All of this is a rich source of information about how the person views self and others, interprets and makes sense of experience, avoids aspects of experience, or interfer4es with potential capacity to find greater enjoyment, ease and meaning in life.

The goals of this type of therapy extend beyond healing the symptom (compulsive sex) but also foster the positive presence of inner capacities and resources. These might include more fulfilling relationships, more effective use of one’s talents and abilities, maintain a realistic sense of self esteem, tolerate a wider array of strong feelings without acting out, have more satisfying sexual experiences, greater understanding of self and other and face life’s challenges with greater freedom and flexibility. These goals are explored through self-reflection, self-exploration and self-discovery that take place in the context of a safe and deeply authentic relationship between therapist and patient.

Personality Factors Common to Sex Addicts

Treated in Psychodynamic Therapy

  • Sexually compulsive behavior helps one manage fluctuating affects, self-sooth, and maintain self-esteem. Sex distracts from painful feelings and thoughts, counteracts inner emptiness, replaces feelings of fragmentation with an illusion of control, and temporarily bolsters self esteem.
  • Sexual activity is a form of self-medication, used to make unbearable feelings and self-states bearable. Addiction furnishes externally what cannot be provided internally.
  • Sexually compulsive individuals often have personalities with narcissistic features.
  • Poor capacity for self-regulation, self-efficacy and self-care
  • Sex Addicts tend to have difficulties sustaining relationships and feeling close to others.
  • Problems in family-of-origin where their individuality and needs were often ignored or punished.
  • In childhood, the true, authentic personality needed to go “underground” to please narcissistic parents; parts of the personality were then “split off ” and are enacted through sexual activity as the adult.
  • The person affected alternates between deprivation of needs/feelings and unrestrained indulgence. This state is marked by significant splitting and minimal integration. (The Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde Syndrome)
  • Deviant sex provides a much-needed connection with another without the “danger” of relatedness.
  • Brief sexual encounters are seen as emotionally safe. They have a fixed ending point, no strings attached and have little room for conflict. Furthermore, anonymous partners cannot readily reject the addict upon the discovery of his real or perceived flaws.
  • Many sex addicts have a strong wish for control and a fear of vulnerability. They feel internally fragile and prone to fragmentation.
  • Sexual behaviors allow a feeling of control, power, triumph or omnipotence that compensates for early-life feelings of helplessness and powerlessness. Most likely a ritualized sexual enactment turns trauma into triumph and is a repetition compulsion with the unconscious aim of repairing the original childhood trauma. Dysfunctional relationships developing out of the trauma are enacted through sexual activity.
  • The details of a sexual enactment, and the fantasies that fuel it, are laden with symbolic meaning and are an aid in understanding the themes of inner conflict driving the behavior.

The Fruits of Treatment

Psychodynamic therapy can help sex addicts to develop:

  • An understanding of the internal factors driving their sexual behavior;
  • Better self-regulation through internalization of the nurturance, containment and structure of the therapeutic environment;
  • Improved capacity for interpersonal relationships and healthy sexuality;
  • Improved capacity for working at an optimal level;
  • Improved access to creative inner resources;
  • Improved capacity to reflect on thoughts and feelings, with a resulting increase in inner control and a decreased need to act out unwanted mental states;
  • Integration of the private and public selves: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde become one;
  • The therapist explores the client’s sexual behaviors and fantasies in detail. Like dreams, they have symbolic meaning and aid in understanding the structure of the personality as a whole.

Further Reading

Shedler, J. (2011) “The Efficacy of Psychodynamic Psychotherapy”

Goodman, A. (1998) “Sex Addiction”

Bean, M. and Zinberg, N. (Eds) (1981) “Dynamic Approaches to the understanding and Treatment of Alsoholism”

Two Uncommon But Most Healthy Foods For Pregnancy

Just having the knowledge about the different types of essential nutrients needed for healthy pregnancy is not enough; you will have to learn about the food sources also that provide those nutrients. For example, you probably already know that you and the baby that is growing inside you need iron, fiber and folic acid to maintain good health, but do you know that you can easily get all these nutrients in appropriate quantity just by eating chives? Likewise, if you are trying to increase your calcium intake, you can consider adding figs to your diet. Following is a brief rundown on three not-very-common but quite delicious foods that can meet your nutrition needs quite efficiently.


Chives contain almost all those essential nutrients that you and your baby need, such as magnesium, calcium, vitamin B6, vitamin C, fiber, iron and folic acid (folate). Magnesium is a very important nutrient for both you and your baby because magnesium takes active part in over three hundred cellular reactions that take place inside your pregnant body. Besides that, magnesium is also helpful in alleviating many common pregnancy symptoms and discomforts, such as constipation. Just sprinkle of chives in your diet can fulfill your magnesium needs.

Besides that, every 2 tablespoons of chives contain around 0.1 milligrams of iron, 3.5 milligrams of vitamin C and 6.4 micrograms of folic acid. A pregnant body needs proper amount of iron for healthy growth of baby, but your body needs adequate amount of vitamin C as well for proper absorption of iron. You can easily meet both the requirements by eating chives. Folic acid, on the other hand, is probably the most important nutrient for a pregnant woman, especially during the first trimester of pregnancy. It is very important for you to keep in mind that lack of folic acid in your body may result in structural defects in your baby, which can be fatal. Therefore, proper intake of folic acid is very important, which you can easily get through the daily intake of 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh chives.

Tips To Make Delicious Healthy Pregnancy Diets Using Chives

Serving size – 2 tablespoons, chopped chives

– Get softened cream cheese and mix chopped chives into it and then spread it on a slice of bread, tortilla chip, cracker or bagel.

– Sprinkle chives on your baked potato

– Sprinkle some on your soup or salad


Pregnant women are usually prescribed super multivitamin-mineral tablets, but do you know that leeks can be the vegetable equivalent of all those tablets? One cup of raw leeks contains 0.4 micrograms of manganese, 2 micrograms of iron, 40 micrograms of vitamin K, 0.2 milligrams of vitamin B6 and 60 micrograms of folate (folic acid). Besides that, leeks are also a rich source of calcium; one cup of raw leeks contains 55 milligrams of calcium.

Where manganese plays a crucial role in the baby’s normal skeletal development, Vitamin K is essential for healthy bone growth and proper blood-clot formation. Likewise, vitamin B6 does not only reduce the tendency of nausea and morning sickness, but it also plays an important role in your body to metabolize energy from the proteins, fats and carbohydrates in your diet. In fact, the mild, sweet flavor of leeks makes it a great food to combat morning sickness. Calcium, on the other hand, can be very helpful in combating other common pregnancy symptoms, such as leg pains, back pain, insomnia and irritability. Considering the very fact that you can get all these nutrients just by eating one serving of leeks, it should not be an exaggeration to say that it is a wonderful power food that you must consider including in your diet regimen.

Tips To Make Delicious Healthy Pregnancy Diets Using Leeks

Serving size – I cup of raw leeks

– You can prepare leeks by cutting off the base and the fibrous green tops and then slicing the stems in half. You can then cut it into small pieces. However, in order to make sure that all hidden grits are removed, you are also strongly recommended to rinse it thoroughly before you cut it into small pieces.

– You can try adding mushrooms and sliced leeks with minced fresh ginger in plain broth. This is a delicious diet, which you can eat without any fear even when your stomach is sensitive.

Chives, tahini and leeks are no doubt healthy pregnancy foods and have all the capabilities to make the nine-month journey more delicious for you. But, you are strongly recommended to get your doctor’s advice before you include these power foods in your diet program. You must always keep in mind that every case of pregnancy is different and their doctor is the best person to tell them what can work and what cannot work for them. So, rate your doctor’s advice above everything while you are journeying through the three trimesters of pregnancy.

Losing Weight By Eating Cucumbers

Is it really possible to lose weight by simply eating cucumbers? These common green vegetables are in fact a useful supplement to your weight reduction régime.

The cucumber is one of the most common salad vegetables. You can usually get them all year round. However they are best in May through July. The best ones to eat are organically grown ones because then you can eat the nutritious skin as well as the cucumber itself. If you can only find commercially grown ones be careful to peel off the waxed skin, as this contains pesticides, chemicals and wax.

How cucumbers will help you lose weight:

• Low calories: They are low in calories and have high water content. This means that they will fill you up without adding calories. They are in fact a great way to help you lose weight.

• Diuretic: they will help you to lose water due to water retention. This is a common problem with obesity.

• Increase fluids: It is essential to drink as much water as possible when you try to lose weight. This will help you to feel fuller and encourage you to eat less. Water will help you to flush toxins from your body. Plus your body needs at least 8 glasses of water to function well. Cucumbers have a large ratio of water which will increase your fluid intake.

• Fiber: cucumbers like most vegetables will provide you with fiber. When losing weight you should try to have a high fiber diet. Fiber will fill you up and encourage you to eat less. It will also aid in making your digestion better. When you digest your food better you will be able to lose weight.

Nutritional facts: an 8 ¼ inch cucumber has 2 grams of protein, 11 grams of carbohydrate, 1 ½ grams fiber, 5 grams of sugar, vitamins K,C, B6 and A. It also has foliate and potassium. A cucumber of this size will only contain 45 calories and because of the water and fiber in it will help to fill you up.

Choosing cucumbers: there are a number of different types of cucumbers and they will taste subtly different. The best way to get varieties that you like is to grow them either in containers or out in your yard. They will have a distinctive taste quite different from the somewhat insipid store cumbers.

• Lemon cucumbers: these are round yellowish green cucumbers with a nice mild flavor.

• Japanese cucumbers: these are a long thin variety that has a mild flavor and is good for eating in salads or as a salad on its own. They are usually found wrapped in cellophane wrap at the stores.

• American cucumbers: there are many varieties of these. They range from small pickling size to larger ones that are ideal for salads. Hybrids have made the cucumber a mild flavored vegetable which has lost much of the bitterness of the old varieties.

Tips for eating:

• Always choose fresh cucumbers that are not wrinkled or sunken. The older they get the more bitter you will find them.

• Cut the end off your cucumbers and rub a little salt into them by rubbing the ends together. Doing this will takeaway some of the bitterness.

• You can slice cucumbers and put them with a little vinegar, salt and pepper.

• You can also pickle them. There are a variety of recipes you can use.

Offshore Welding Jobs – Secrets to Becoming an Oil Rig Welder

Becoming an offshore welder is primarily a matter of experience and preparation; the opportunity is always there for those who are both prepared and diligent. If becoming a welder offshore is an ambition of yours, then there is a pretty set standard for what is needed to apply. Beyond that, however, if you go the extra mile and do what most others won’t, your odds of getting hired go up by an order of magnitude.

It is important to already have become a certified welder before applying to work offshore, and to preferably have a good deal of experience under your belt as well. The reason for this is that the offshore environment is challenging enough on it’s own without having to pick up a new trade or skill 40 miles out at sea. Being certified shows a certain accomplishment and determination, which the contractors that service the rigs with welding services like to see.

If you haven’t yet become a certified welder, or are still in school, then stay in school and finish your technical education before even thinking about applying offshore. While a high school degree is a definite plus, the really important thing is to have graduated from a certified vocational or technical school, or undergone a welding apprenticeship.

Once you have your welder’s certificate, consider applying offshore as a roustabout first. You will no doubt be put to work as a welder’s assistant your first time out, but this will allow you to learn the protocols and procedures unique to working offshore. Additionally, you’ll get to work with a highly experienced welder or welders who can show you the ropes of working on an offshore rig, as well as train you in the use of specialized equipment that may be used on the rigs.

A big plus when going to apply for offshore welding jobs is to already have your ducks lined up in a row in terms of obtaining required training and certification that offshore workers need to have. Now, in many if not most cases, contractors will pay to have potential employees put through these courses before shipping them off to the rig. However, if you do this yourself ahead of time, not only will you show initiative and preparation, you’ll impress your potential boss as well.

The certificates required are HUET, short for Helicopter Underwater Escape Training; First Aid, and Offshore Survival Training. Believe me, these are courses you really want to take; make no mistake, working offshore is dangerous. A recent helicopter crash transporting 19 workers from Scotland to the rigs in the North Sea shows the value of the training – all 19 survived, and all had the training required to do so.

Now many employers may not require you to take these courses, but doing so will not only impress them, it will provide you with peace of mind yourself, and give you the knowledge and confidence that you can handle almost any situation that may arise when working offshore.

Ultimately, working as on offshore welder is a matter of getting the right training, applying with the right contractors, getting hired, and staying safe. The pay is great, as is the experience, and you’ll have a lot of downtime between hitches to enjoy the oil worker lifestyle. What are you waiting for?

Medical Care in Barbados

While most people visit Barbados for a relaxing holiday in the sun, the realities of life often come into play when medical assistance is needed. This was in the international spotlight recently when emergency medical assistance was required of the British Prime Minister, Tony Blair and his wife Cherie’s son Euan.

It is important to have a plan in case of a medical emergency during your stay in Barbados. Ambulances can often take up to one hour to reach your location, especially if you are on the busy West Coast.

Barbados is fortunate to have highly skilled medical personnel but those practitioners often do not have access to state of the art equipment. With few exceptions, the medical expertise and bedside manner of Barbados’ physicians is on a World class level. It is highly recommended for those visiting Barbados to be proactive in selecting a course of action should the need arise.

What are your choices?

The Government owned Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) is Barbados’ only full service hospital, with intensive care facilities, located just outside of the capital Bridgetown. It also has a reciprocal arrangement for British nationals on the National Health Service (NHS) scheme, where you would be treated and cared for in a Public Ward. Be advised that QEH is often crowded and the wait can be long and sometimes frustrating if your medical needs are not deemed to be of immediate attention. Telephone 436-6450 or 511 for emergency dispatch.

FMH Emergency Medical Clinic is a private accident and emergency medical centre. Located in Belleville, St Michael, this facility offers X-ray, MRI and care for serious but not life threatening injuries. FMH is open from 8 a.m. until 11:30 p.m. and will handle most emergencies or refer patients to the QEH as needed. Telephone 228-6120.

BayView Hospital, a privately owned and operated facility, with seven private rooms and four four-bed semi-private rooms, has been operational since 1989. Situated on the outskirts of Bridgetown and within close proximity of many leading hotels, BayView Hospital offers private non-emergency medical care in a variety of fields including cardiology, dentistry, internal medicine, obstetrics and gynaecology, ophthalmology, orthopaedic surgery, plastic surgery and urology. However, you must be admitted under the specific care of a physician who holds admitting privileges at this hospital. Please call 436 5446, or visit their website BayViewHospital.com.bb for more information.

A new state of the art, privately owned facility has opened its doors on the West Coast – Sandy Crest Medical Centre in Sunset Crest, St James. This ultra-modern complex offers 24 hour comprehensive emergency and non-emergency care service, x-ray, ultra-sounds, CT technology (by the end of the year), access to an ambulance service, 24-hour pharmacy access, as well as an asthma bay. This emergency clinic has employed the services of five of the island’s leading emergency room practitioners, one for every shift. Please call 419-4911, or visit their web site SandyCrest.net (under construction) for more information.

The island has two private ambulance services, Island Care Ambulance (246) 435 9425, and Get Help Ambulance Service (246) 438 4357, and the QEH Ambulance Service (246) 436 6450 or 511, all of which are located in the Bridgetown area. However, there is a QEH Ambulance service out of the Arch Hall Fire Station in St Thomas, to service the West/North coast of the island. In extreme cases, patients will be air-ambulanced to either Canada or the USA.

Herbal Cures For Gout? How to Treat Gout Naturally Without Doctor Prescribed Medication

Most of us who suffer with frequent gout attacks think that the most logical conclusion is to get doctor prescribed medication to help treat the condition. However, did you know that there are herbal cures for gout that work just as well as their prescription based counterparts?

Well, the jury is in and it is good news for those who suffer from gout attacks. A recent study of 120 people who had frequent gout attacks were asked to rate on a scale of 1 to 5 how effective prescribed medications were compared to their herbal counterparts. The results? Of all the prescribed medications, Prednisone scored the highest with a 4.4 rating. Anturane scored the lowest in its effectiveness for treating gout.

In contrast, both gout care and Urinex scored comparable results as an effective alternative to prescription based medications like Prednisone. This is significant because it means that gout sufferers don’t have to spend their money on high priced doctor prescribed medicines and can opt for alternative herbal supplements for the same results.

Other alternatives to high priced prescribed gout medicine?

In the same study, the respondents were asked to rate several natural remedies to gout on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the most effective. Out of the 120 questioned, the most top natural remedy for those polled was cherry juice, followed by baking soda, celery seed extract and finally activated charcoal. All of these herbal alternatives were on par with Allopurinol, Probenecid and NSAIDS in terms of controlling gout symptoms.

What does this mean?

The point of this article is to show that there are alternatives to using steroids and other prescribed medications for gout and that most of these medications, when compared side by side, aren’t more beneficial than treating gout using herbal supplements and common natural gout treatments that many view as “folk medicine.”

Bioforce Home Gym – 6 Startling Facts You Must Know About Bio Force TNT

Have you been thinking about buying a Bioforce Home Gym or Tony Little’s Bio Force Extreme ?

Well before you blow your hard earned cash on these home gyms take a moment to read this article. A friend of mine recently called me up and asked me my opinion about the Bioforce Home Gym … I told him I knew nothing about it, but what he told me and all the TV infomercials got my curiosity up.

I’ll be candid with you I am no big fan of the expensive home gyms that I see on TV or in sporting goods stores. For the most part they are poorly manufactured and severely OVER-PRICED.

So with much reluctance I took a drive down to the local Sports Authority (SA) to check one out.

Here are the things I liked and disliked about the Bioforce Home Gym:

1. It is a sturdy piece of equipment when compared to any of the Bowflex home gyms sold at SA (I have yet to see the Bowflex Revolution) and I would imagine on TV or their web site as well.

2. The lat pull down attachment was well constructed and the handles were made of good quality.

3. The unit itself is not light in weight (it weights 174 lbs. fully assembled) but I guess that is to be expected since you don’t want it falling over on you while you are exercising.

4. I asked the sales associate at the store about how easy it was to assemble and he stated that the Bioforce Home Gym people say it only takes 1.5 hours but he had assembled the one on the floor and it was closer to 2.5 hours.

He did mention that the instructions were easy to follow and complete. Also, he stated, that they do provide all the tools necessary for assembly. A nice feature I must add.

5. The unit itself is not small by any means so you probably will need a good sized room to put it in. The assembled dimensions are 52-3/4″ L X 65″ W X 82″ H. It is tall so forget about putting it in the interior of your home if you have low ceilings or in your basement. You will need to devote one room as a fitness gym for this big unit.

6. I did get a chance to look at their training manual and here I was VERY disappointed! They advertise more than 100 exercises… the truth is that many of the exercises are simply doing the exercise with your other hand, as in the case of a biceps curl. They count the right hand as one exercise and the left hand as exercise number two. This is one area they fail miserably how can you get a good workout?

Philippine Oil Deregulation – A Policy Research Analysis


The Policy As An Output

Embodied in the Republic Act No. 8479, otherwise known as the “Downstream Oil Industry Deregulation Act of 1998,” is the policy of the state that deregulates the oil industry to “foster a truly competitive market which can better achieve the social policy objectives of fair prices and adequate, continuous supply of environmentally-clean and high quality petroleum products” (Congress 1998).

With deregulation, government allows market competition. That means government does not interfere with the pricing, exportation, and importation of oil products, even the establishment of retail outlets, storage depots, ocean-receiving facilities, and refineries.

It has been a decade ago since lawmakers made a proposition that deregulation would secure the Philippines from the vulnerability of oil price shocks due to its heavily dependent on imported oil. But it is now increasingly apparent that many are calling to scrap the law as six out of ten Filipinos favor the repeal of RA 8479 (Somosierra 2008).

The Policy As A Process

When President Fidel Ramos started his administration in 1992, the country had already started feeling the effects of power supply deficiencies, with major areas already experiencing power interruptions. The power crisis caused a slowdown in the national economy for nearly three years and prodded the government to initiate major reforms in order to rehabilitate the energy sector (Viray 1998, p.461-90). In response to a power supply crisis, Ramos revived the plans to liberalize the oil industry that were cut short during the Aquino administration due to Gulf crisis.

The government’s efforts to enact an oil deregulation law were also intensified in 1995 when the Oil Price Stabilization Fund (OPSF ) started to threaten the fiscal stability of the economy. Deregulation was thus seen as the solution to the recurring deficit.

The problem of the OPSF deficit was in part related to the highly political nature of oil prices, which encouraged government to defer price increases as much as possible in order to avoid public protest even at the expense of incurring a fiscal deficit. However, government mismanagement of the fund also included using it for non-oil purposes such as financing other government projects or the public sector deficit when it was in surplus (Pilapil 1996, p.12).

At the height of a strong lobbying effort for deregulation by oil companies and despite the loud opposition of militant groups, the industry was eventually deregulated in 1996 with the enactment of RA 8180 (the Downstream Oil Industry Deregulation Act of 1996) in Congress.

However, Supreme Court declared in 1997 the unconstitutionality of RA 8180. The Court decision stemmed from three provisions in the law that were deemed to inhibit free competition and therefore, violated the anti-trust mandate of the 1987 Constitution (Supreme Court 1997). But administration Congressmen quickly re-filed the oil deregulation bill leading to the new oil deregulation law. RA 8479 was then enacted to pave the way for the full deregulation of the oil industry. Since then, government has no longer control over the industry. What it can do is only monitoring.

Applicable Models

The policy model that best describes the policy process is Vig and Kraft 1984 model where policy stages/phases are characterized by five elements: 1) agenda setting, 2) policy formulation, 3) policy adoption, 4) policy implementation, and 5) policy monitoring.

On the other hand, the model that best describes the policy approach is Mixed Scanning because the Ramos administration resorted to rational planning process and incrementalized on liberalization plan of the Aquino government.


The Policy Environment

Identified policy environment includes the regime characteristics of Ramos Administration, socio-economic structure in 1990’s, and the prevailing international financial influence on the country’s economy and politics.

The Policy Stakeholders

Identified as stakeholders in this policy are the Filipino people, the President, Legislators, Supreme Court, DOE, DOJ, DTI, NEDA, the oil companies, NGO/advocacy groups, and media.

The Interrelationships Between Policy Environment And Stakeholders

Despite a strong opposition coming directly from ordinary people, transport groups, and NGOs, the oil deregulation policy was still pushed through. It was formulated and instituted under the regime of President Ramos who, in his flagship program called the Philippines 2000, envisioned to make the country globally competitive by pursuing the thrusts of deregulation, market liberalization, and privatization. The media then exposed the fact that the biggest factor that influenced the formulation of the policy was the perceived eventual bankruptcy of the Oil Price Stabilization Fund, which had been originally established by President Ferdinand Marcos for the purpose of minimizing frequent price changes brought about by exchange adjustments and/or an increase in world market prices of crude oil and imported petroleum products.

Influenced by the International Monetary Fund, Ramos administration argued that there was a need to deregulate the industry because under a regulated environment, prices are not allowed to rise and fall with market levels. This means that when prices went up, government had to shell out money to subsidize the difference between the old and the new price.

According to the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA), had the government opted not to deregulate, OPSF obligation would have ballooned to at least P8.3 billion in 1998. The P8.3 billion is equivalent to the construction of more than 4,500 kilometers of provincial roads, 51,000 deep wells of potable water, 25,000 school houses, or free rice for 20% of the poorest Filipinos (Bernales 1998)

The Supreme Court in 1998 ruled in favor of the constitutionality of the Downstream Oil Industry Deregulation Act of 1998. Since then, it has been the policy of the subsequent administrations to deregulate the industry. DOE, DTI, DENR, DOST are agencies mandated to serve as the monitoring-arm of the government.

Is The Policy Working?

The answer is obviously “No.” IBON Foundation reported that the Oil Deregulation Law has further strengthened the monopoly of the big oil companies as automatic oil price hikes are allowed. Consequently, other oil companies took advantage of the policy, hiking pump prices of all petroleum products by around 535% since the Oil Deregulation Law was first implemented in April 1996 (Bicol Today 2007). The policy is also unable to solve or, at least, mitigate the effects of global oil crisis.


A. Repeating The Process

a.1 Problem Definition/Structuring

It has been recognized that the problem with oil is far from over as deregulation policy fails to meet its goal to foster a truly competitive market and reasonable oil prices. The current president herself, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, acknowledges the fact that the oil crisis is threatening to erode the very fiber of the Philippine society.

Unlike in 1998, the crisis today seems to be more irreparable as the United States is facing what many economists describe as the worst economic crisis in its history, triggering unstoppable skyrocketing of oil prices and prices of foodstuffs around the world. As already stated, the oil crisis is a global one and has to be addressed not only at the national level, but at the international level as well.

But why is the oil crisis a global crisis? Is it really beyond the government control?

The Philippines, like many other nations, buys the oil at the spot market. By “spot” is meant, that one buys the oil at a market only 24 to 48 hours before one takes physical (spot) delivery, as opposed to buying it 12 or more months in advance. In effect, the spot market inserted a financial middleman into the oil patch income stream.

Today, the oil price is largely set in the two futures markets: London-based International Petroleum Exchange (IPE) and the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX). Here, traders or investors buy or sell certain commodities like oil at a certain date in the future, at a specified price. Basically, traders invest in the futures market by buying futures contracts called “paper oil” or simply paper claim against oil. The very purpose of buying oil is not to wait for the actual delivery of the physical oil in the future, but to sell the paper oil to another trader at a higher price. That’s how investors engage in widespread speculation; and it is becoming a viscous cycle. Almost all countries, including the Philippines, buy the oil at the spot market where the price is already at its peak.

In a year 2000 study, Executive Intelligence Review (EIR) showed that for every 570 “paper barrels of oil”-that is futures contracts covering 570 barrels-traded each year, there was only one underlying physical barrel of oil. The 570 paper oil contracts pull the price of the underlying barrel of oil, manipulating the oil price. If the speculators bet long-that the price will rise-the mountain of bets pulls up the underlying price (Valdes 2005).

This only disproves the popular assumption that oil price hike has something to do with the “law of supply and demand.” In fact, as much as 60% of today’s crude oil price is pure speculation driven by large trader banks and hedge funds. It has nothing to do with the convenient myths of Peak Oil. It has to do with control of oil and its price (Engdahl 2008).

In its recent statement, IBON Foundation cited a study conducted by the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, which revealed that 30 percent or more of the prevailing crude oil cost is driven only by speculation. IBON further cited that speculation adds about $35 to a barrel of crude oil (Martinez 2008).

a.2 Developing Alternative

In the face of the alarming oil price hike that threatens the survival of ordinary Filipino people, a number of stakeholders call for alternative solutions: 1) amendment of the Oil Deregulation Law, 2) scrap/repeal the law, 3) removal of 12% vat on oil, 4) seek alternative sources of energy, and 5) engage in country-to-country oil agreement.

a.3 Options Analysis

1. Amendment of the Deregulation Law

As the public continues to hurt from surging oil prices, many policy makers call to re-examine the Downstream Oil Industry Deregulation Act of 1998. One of whom, is Ilocos Sur Rep. Eric Singson who has sought several amendments in the said law to ensure transparency in the pricing of oil products and encourage greater competition in the retail industry, which has been under the influence of giant oil companies. He cited the need to amend Sections 14 and 15 of RA 8479 to strengthen the powers of the Department of Energy (DOE) so it can effectively carry out its mandate to inform and protect the public from illicit practices in the oil industry and to provide more financial assistance for the establishment and operation of gasoline stations, which will encourage investment and fair competition (Malacanang 2005).

2. Scrap/Repeal the Oil Deregulation Law

To many, amending the law is not enough to rectify the skyrocketing prices of oil and oil-based products; they demand for the repeal, instead. A lawmaker from the Lower House, Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus Rodriguez filed House Bill 4262 aiming to repeal Republic Act No. 8479, arguing that instead of fostering a competitive market, the law has only strengthened the oil cartel in the country and brought the oil prices up. The bill also seeks to re-establish the Oil Price Stabilization Fund. He articulated that dominant oil companies still dictate the price because even new oil industry players get their supply from the giants (Sisante 2008).

Militant groups and other non-government organizations have staged rallies and strikes all over the country in opposition of the deregulation policy. Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU), one of the country’s prominent labor groups, contested that cartelization still exists amidst deregulation. In its recent statement, KMU articulated that with recent Dubai oil prices pegged at $97 per barrel (as of 3rd week of September), local price of diesel is at P49/liter; while when Dubai crude was at $97/liter on Nov. 6, 2007, diesel in the Philippines was sold only at P37.95/liter, or P11.05/liter lower than the present rates (GMANews.TV 2008).

3. Removal of 12% VAT on oil

Senator Mar Roxas said that government must heed calls to remove the 12% value-added tax (VAT) on oil and oil products as prices continue to go up despite the lowering of oil prices in the world market. Roxas had filed Senate Bill No. 1962. However, in her eighth State of the Nation Address (SONA), President Arroyo, stated that it will be the poor who will suffer the most from the removal of VAT on oil and electricity as this will mean the loss of P80 billion in programs being funded by her tax reform (Arroyo 2008).

4. Alternative sources of energy.

While many have engaged themselves in the long-running debate about amendment vs. repeal of the law, a number of stakeholders argue that Philippine government must, instead, focus on alternative sources of energy to rectify the heavy dependence on imported oil. Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri, now considered “Father of the Philippine Biofuels Bill,” has hyped biofuel as the miracle product which can lower oil prices. But more and more scientists are worried that focusing on biofuels could jeopardize food production.

The Philippine LaRouche Society, an increasingly emerging think tank organization in the country, says that biofuel advocacy is a losing proposition as it competes with food production for human consumption. The organization calls, instead, for the revival of the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP) as soon as possible to provide the population with a cheap, reliable, and continuous source of power to subsequently free the people from dependence on oil. The organization further articulates that since that will require huge financial requirements, the Philippine government must, therefore, declare a moratorium on foreign debt payments-since much of which are onerous and merely product of “bankers arithmetic” (Billington 2005).

5. Country-to-country oil agreement

The Philippine LaRouche Society has long been proposing to the government to initiate immediate steps to establish bilateral contract agreements with oil-producing countries of not less than 12 months’ government scheduled deliveries at reasonable, fixed prices. Government can also enter into commodity-swap agreements with oil-producing countries.

As a member of the United Nations and other intergovernmental associations like APEC and WTO, the Philippine government should join the growing worldwide call for a fair and honest oil trading by de-listing oil as a commodity traded in the futures market.

a.4 Deciding the Best and Most Feasible Option

It must be known to all the Filipino people that oil deregulation, as a policy, has failed to foster a truly competitive market towards fair prices and adequate, continuous supply of environmentally-clean and high quality petroleum products. Proposed solution # 2 (scrap/repeal the Oil Deregulation Law) is therefore a better option. But repealing the Deregulation Law is not the ultimate answer to the rise in oil prices. Even if the law is repealed, the Philippines will still be subjected to the same factors-a rise in oil prices in the global market.

Proposed solution # 5 (country-to-country oil agreement) can address the issue of the oil crisis at the international level. How about the efforts to solve the crisis at the national level?

The Philippine government must revive the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant to provide the population with a cheap, reliable, and continuous source of power to subsequently free the people from dependence on oil. As proposed, government must direct enough funds, instead for debt servicing, towards the revival and upgrade of BNPP. Removal of the entire E-VAT, not only on oil, must also be taken into consideration to ease the pain of the Filipino people. By moratorium, government doesn’t have to extract a pound of flesh out of every Filipino to have the means to fund its programs.

B. Why seemingly “better” options are not adopted? The Peculiarities of the Philippine Policy System

From the standpoint of the present administration, amending RA 8479 seems to be difficult to adopt because re-regulating the oil industry would mean subsidizing oil prices-something like OPSF. To many, this does not work in an era of rising crude prices because it would entail government resources. This is where debt moratorium comes in as an effective fiscal strategy. But moratorium, to many skeptics, is unwise because they fear the blackmail or retaliation of the multinational creditors. Our leaders must learn how then President Nestor Kirchner of Argentina defied the predatory financial institutions, averring that “There’s life after the IMF.”

On the other hand, many leaders deem country-to-country oil agreement impossible to implement as the giant oil companies have still strong influence on the policy-making process in the country. On the part of the oil companies, it will be a huge loss if government will assert its power to have a bilateral agreement with any of the oil-producing country. Also, many leaders consider the Philippines as a small nation with no voice in the international assembly. But it is a matter of having “big balls,” to put it in a figurative language. After all, they are the leaders and are mandated by the Constitution to protect and promote the general welfare.

Another peculiarity of the Philippine policy system is the negative perception towards nuclear energy. BNPP has been stigmatized as being environmentally dangerous and as being associated with “corruption.” The fact of the matter is, the technology has already evolved and been modernized. The Philippine government spent $2.3 billion to build BNPP without generating a kilowatt of electricity. It is high time to revisit the old strategy to finally free the country from dependence on imported oil.

It is worth mentioning that the International Atomic Energy Agency inspected the power plant in Bataan early this year and reported that this could be rehabilitated, in full compliance with high international safety environment standards, in at least five years at a cost of $800 million (Burgonio 2008). The Philippine LaRouche Society emphasizes the importance of declaring debt moratorium as a fiscal strategy to start the rehabilitation. The organization argues that the Philippines is servicing the debt over US $10 billion per year, which is more than enough to start the full operation of BNPP (PLS 2008).


With the recognition that oil crisis is a global oil crisis, affecting the lives of all inhabitants of our planet, it is incumbent, therefore, upon the leadership of the Philippines to immediately take the following steps:

A) To immediately repeal the oil deregulation law, for the government to assert its sovereign power to have control over the oil industry and economy as a whole.

B) To propose at any international summit or assembly that oil, being a commodity, critical to the continuation of human life, be de-listed as a commodity traded in the futures market, thereby escaping the clutches of unscrupulous people and speculative financial institutions.

C) To initiate immediate steps to establish bilateral contract agreements with petroleum-producing countries of not less than 12 months’ government scheduled deliveries at reasonable, fixed prices.

D) To design a comprehensive energy development program, such as nuclear power plant being the most cost-efficient source of energy to date, for the purpose of freeing our country from complete dependence on imported energy sources. To this end, moratorium on foreign debt must be taken into account as a paramount fiscal strategy.

The crisis, which we now face as a nation, requires understanding of the problems through diligent study and concomitant courage to do what is right for the benefit of the present and future Filipino generations.

Beware When Searching For The Best Digestive Enzyme Supplement

Because of our very unhealthy modern diets, many of us put ourselves in not only a dangerous position of dietary fiber deficiency, but also an enzyme deficiency. Both can be dangerous for our health and both are easily repaired. There is a problem though when many people searching for the best digestive enzyme will face; enzyme supplements don’t work.

An inherent problem which faces the supplement industry is that when enzymes are extracted from plants and other natural food sources they don’t behave the same way as they do in their natural state.

Inside our stomach is a major enzyme called pepsin. The job pepsin has is to instantly break down protein for the body to use as energy. Enzyme supplements are made from protein so what happens is that those best digestive enzyme supplements you thought were going to help will get eaten up in your stomach rendering them useless for any help to your digestive system.

Natural food sources are the best

There are many natural supplement products out there that can benefit us in many health problems but in this case you’re better off avoiding any supplement specifically created as a digestive enzyme product. Most fresh fruits are an excellent source of enzymes. In particular is the kiwifruit not only because it is the most nutrient-dense fruit available, but it has an enzyme called “actinidin”. This digestive enzyme has been found to help digest even the hardest foods to the digestive system like soy red meat and dairy.

Actinidin was found to behave much like that other powerful digestive enzyme in the stomach called pepsin. The kiwifruit is nutritionally powerful because besides containing actinidin, it also contains many important vitamins, minerals, and healthy fatty acids, which are all beneficial for proper digestion.

Two Recommended Hospitals in Durban, South Africa

Durban is a major city in South Africa and the Durban Metropolitan Area is the biggest city on the African east coast. The city has about 3.5 million people and 2,292 square kilometers and is a major center of export-related industries, transportation, tourism, finance and administration ifor the country of South Africa. Durban has many good hospitals in both public and private sectors. The modern hospitals are operated by the country’s major private health care companies and offer excellent medical care. This is a description of some of the leading hospitals in Durban.

Netcare Parklands Hospital is situated at Hopelands Road in the city of Overport, and is a leading hospital which offers high quality health care service. South Africa’s most reputed medical service provider, Netcare Limited manages this well equipped hospital. The surgery unit for this hospital has eight modern operating rooms and one ESWL theater with facilities for conducting various surgeries in different specialties including pediatric and ENT surgery. It has a a minor surgical ward with 16 beds and a major surgical ward with 36 beds. The modern emergency care division offers round the clock services. In addition, the center has a well-equipped baby clinic and a spacious pre-admission clinic. The hospital possesses a lot of sophisticated equipment including a PET / CT scan. The retail pharmacy is stocked with all types of drugs and medical aids. Warm accommodations are provided in an especially caring environment. Physiotherapy services are also offered in the center. Tel: 27 31 242 4000

Life Entabeni Hospital is another modern health care facility in the city and is located at 148 South Ridge Road, Berea, Durban. This patient focused hospital is one among the 63 hospitals managed by Life Healthcare, one of South Africa’s largest hospital groups in private sector. Like all other Life Healthcare hospitals, this center is also known for having all the latest facilities at unparalleled quality. The hospital has modern departments in all disciplines such as cardiology, internal medicine, dentistry, gastroenterology, neurology, pediatrics and more. Life Entabeni Hospital has an epilepsy unit with a 24 hour video EEG and a lung center for treating breathing problems. The radiology division is provided with a complete range of modern diagnostic equipment like a CT scanner, an MRI and radioisotope nuclear medicine facilities. Tel: 031 204 1300.

Risk Factors for Coronary Heart Disease

Certain medical conditions (eg, diabetes), disorders, personal habits (eg, smoking), and drugs or chemicals are known to increase the risk of coronary heart disease, particularly a heart attack. Such factors that lay the groundwork for heart problems are called coronary risk factors. To prevent heart attack, you should be fully aware of various coronary risk factors. They include high blood pressure, abnormal blood cholesterol levels, and smoking; these factors must be modified or even eliminated.

Some risk factors, such as age and male gender, are beyond our control, but we can modify many other factors and even eliminate them altogether. Family history of a heart attack is a very strong risk factor, but it can be limited to a certain degree. For instance, obesity, high blood pressure, hyperlipidemia, and cigarette smoking frequently run in the same family, but certain life styles and eating habits often influence these factors and can influence a family history of heart attack. Many individuals have been shown to have multiple risk factors. Typically, obese people have a tendency to have high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, and diabetes, and all that may be worsened by a sedentary life style.

Coronary risk factors can be summarized as major and minor. Major risk factors include:

* Genetic factors (eg, a family history of premature coronary artery disease).

* Age and gender (eg, men who are over 45 years of age, and women who are over 55 years of age).

Coronary heart disease risk factors also include:

* High blood pressure

* Elevated blood lipods

* Diabetes Mellitus

* Cigarette smoking

* Obesity

* A sedentary lifestyle

* Emotional stress

Emotional stress is a major risk factor that you might consider less important because it is not evident as a physical process. However, such stress often increases blood pressure, and it may cause overeating or smoking from nervous tension. Anger also does not always exhibit physical signs or effects. Yet angry young men are prone to premature coronary heart disease, particularly a heart attack.

One type of minor risk factor is the excessive use of alcohol. Excessive alcohol drinking can raise blood pressure and triglyceride blood levels, and overuse of alcohol often triggers the onset of various abnormal heart rhythms. Neverheless, some medical reports state that consumption of a moderate amount of alcohol is said to be protection against heart attack. Another well known fact is that drinking large amounts of alcohol often produces heart muscle damage.

Another minor risk factor is type A personality. The term type A personality describes a person who has an aggressive, ambitious, and competitive character. Such people seem to have heart attacks more often, but this theory is somewhat controversial.

Homocysteine ​​is a further minor risk factor. Abnormally high blood levels of amino acid Homocysteine ​​are considered to create an increased risk for coronary heart disease and stroke. Homocysteine ​​may harm the lining of the arteries and contribute to blood clotting. Excessive Homocysteine ​​levels are reported to occur with the diffiency of vitamins B6, B12, and folic acid, so it may be beneficial to ensure that you get sufficient amounts of these vitamins to prevent high homocysteine ​​levels.

Other vitamins may also be beneficial in prevention of heart attacks. Vitamin E seems to reduce the risk of coronary heart disease, but its role is still controversial. Vitamin C may improve the function of the inner layer of the blood vessel called the endothelium, which can effect blood flow. High intake of beta carotene and other carotenoids from dark colored fruits and vegetables may also help t`o reduce the risk of heart attack.

Depression has adverse biological effects on the immune system, on blood clotting, on blood pressure, on the blood vessels, and on heart rhythms. This factor can even hurt a patients desire to comply with heart medicines. Somewhat related are seasonal variations: More deaths from heart disease occur in the winter months, and the fewest occur in the summertime. Short daylight hours in gloomy or rainy weather often cause emotional depression and therefore an increased risk for heart attack.