Jun 23

Be patient! Love is coming!

This life is not flat and not too tough as you think…It is just simple that how we enjoy it.

Are you patient enough to achieve what you want or are you patient enough to please someone else?

Patience is an answer for long-term success.

Have you ever had enough patience to listen advices or heart-to-heart talk of your parents? Instead of that, you are willing to sit in front of computer screen for hours to load movie with your handsome idol.

Have you had enough patience to listen to explanation of someone when they found out their mistakes instead of turning away and blaming them? Why don’t you give them a chance or you don’t permit your heart to receive love? It‘s like your painting soul missing line of drawing. You should fill it with patience and love.

Have you ever had enough patience to complete a difficult Math exercise or finish a remaining picture? It’s like you don’t let the love come to your life or you make someone’s heart out of tune but accidentally turn away.

Have you ever had enough patience to wait for someone to reply your message at midnight because you want to see who you are in their heart. And if you didn’t get any feedback, you would think that you fail and immediately send back a message: “I’m joking”. Be patient! When you bravely express your feelings and love to someone, your should be patient to wait because maybe they are awaiting for your signal. On the contrary, love didn’t return as you expected. You shouldn’t be sad because love will come to you, bringing with happiness and dreams.

Sometimes when you make mistake or feel desperate, you come back to your loving home. However, after listening to parents’s recommendation in a few minutes, you feel bored and stand up with an excuse: “I have a lot of homework to complete today”.  Have you ever behaved like that? And did you see sadness in your parents’s eyes at that time?


Be patient to receive love

Gift of life

Do you know that your patience has gone away. Receiving advices from your family or people around you is a gift of life. This is the most simple way to make yourself and draw the painting of your soul. If you wish your life is as beautiful as your dream, you should be patient to get advices and “collect paintings of life” to perfect yourself and get closer to success. Don’t let your pride prevent love when someone comments on you. The way to success isn’t flat. You need someone’s hands to raise you up when you fail or intend to give up.

So be patient to receive love!

Open your heart to receive love

When you enter the door of love, you have to accept that you might suffer from hurt. When you open your heart to love someone, it means that you give them opportunities to hurt your heart. However, this doesn’t mean that you stop hoping for a perfect love.

Those who have experienced break-up and loss tend to be more cautious and more reserved but they always appreciate happiness they have and they need a peaceful shelter.

People still feel lonely even when they are surrounded by love, still afraid of loss though they are keeping a key to open someone’s heart.

If you love a damaged-heart person, do you have enough patience, courage, tolerance and love to protect him/her in your love.

Have any men strongly said to girls: “ Why you like to hold both of hands in your pocket instead of holding my hands to get warmness from me”. Believe in me, love is destiny, open your heart to receive love, my dear.”


Open your heat to receive love

Do you believe in phrase: “if we have destiny, we will met each other again”. But I think that fate just knock at the door when we open the door. Because “if you don’t want, I can’t be your prop”.

You should believe that there is always someone waiting for you at the end of the road. Although the life is tough, you will be covered by other hands, just as you have enough patience to wait for it”.

Many people have experienced disruption, loss and misery but they still overcome the hurts to open their hearts to receive new love and new happiness that they deserve.

Any love is beautiful but not all of them have a happy ending. Sometime a broken-up love helps us have another opportunity to find true happiness. More important thing is that we offer ourself chances and open our hearts to receive love.

Jun 05

Treatment for everyday aches at home

You’ve always thought of yourself as a healthy person. So what’s with the stiff back every morning? Or the knees that sound like crackling glass when you walk up the stairs? Maybe it’s your shoulders that ache after a session at the computer, or the twinge in your hip when you reach for something on a high shelf. These minor aches aren’t just annoying–they also get in the way of your life, making you less productive at work and less energetic when you want to play. Here’s help.hurt

Why does it hurt?

Pain from a serious injury demands immediate care. Less intense pain, the kind we’re talking about here, often signals a bad habit or other problem that–though not necessarily urgent–needs attention.

1. Spotty sleep

You know you can get a neck cramp if you sleep in the wrong position. But simply not sleeping enough, or soundly enough, can make things hurt too. “If you don’t rest well, your muscles don’t get downtime”, explains Douglas Paauw, M.D., professor of medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle. “That has a huge impact on pain.”

2. Past injury

You may be getting a “hello again” from the knee you landed on years ago or the elbow you twisted. “When you’re injured, sometimes the body doesn’t heal perfectly,” says Scott Fishman, M.D., a pain specialist at the University of California, Davis, School of Medicine and a member of the board of directors of the American Pain Foundation. Scar tissue may have reduced your ease of movement, contributing to the degeneration of joints and muscles. Or you may have put stress on another body part to accommodate the injury–when you favor a weak hip and end up straining the opposite one, for example. You’re especially likely to hear from those old injuries first thing in the morning because of diminished blood flow to these areas when you sleep.

3. Getting older

Tendons and ligaments lose flexibility with age, and joints and spinal disks become less well lubricated, so you may feel stiffer. “Around age 35 or 40, things start aching and hurting that didn’t earlier”, says Robert Gotlin, M.D., director of orthopedic and sports rehabilitation at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York City. Though stiffness can make exercise more challenging, you’ll feel worse if you’re not physically active.

4. Arthritis

Osteoarthritis (the breakdown of cartilage in the joints, leading to inflammation) is the type we associate with aging. It’s also the most common form of arthritis, causing pain and joint enlargement in the knees, hips, big toe, tips of the fingers, base of the thumb, or spine. But arthritis pain isn’t inevitable with age: Though more than half of people over 60 show signs of the disorder on an X ray, fewer than one third notice symptoms. Younger people can get arthritis, too, especially if a joint has been injured repeatedly.

5. Posture

Lifting your chin as you read the computer screen, hunching over the kitchen counter, cradling the phone between your ear and shoulder–when your body is out of alignment, your muscles and joints will protest.

6. Overdoing it

Pushing yourself hard in a way your body isn’t used to–starting a new exercise program, painting the living room, planting shrubs-can strain or even tear muscles. Likewise, repeating the same familiar motion without a break–inputting data using a keyboard or scrubbing bathroom walls–can irritate tendons and inflame nerves too. Interestingly, if you must repeat movements under severe time pressure, you may suffer more, says Mary Jurisson, M.D., a physiatrist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. The nervous system goes into what’s called “overflow,” when more nerves than necessary fire, which can cause fatigue and lead to muscle aches. That’s why people such as data entry workers–who must meet specified productivity demands–are more vulnerable to repetitive stress injuries than techies who may spend far more hours at the computer but under no particular time pressure.

7. Weight gain

Excess pounds put stress on joints and add to arthritis risk: “For every pound of body weight, your hips and knees feel five to ten pounds of pressure,” says Stanford Shoor, M.D., chief of rheumatology for Kaiser Permanente. Equally important, excess weight often goes hand in hand with a sedentary lifestyle. And without exercise, tissues that are already stiff become weaker, shorter, less flexible, and more vulnerable to injury.

How to help yourself

For minor aches, the following measures are often enough to ease the pain:

1. Get moving

“The more you rest, the harder it is to stop resting,” explains Dr. Fishman. “Usually you’re better off continuing to move, though it doesn’t have to be strenuous, and certainly exercise shouldn’t cause more pain.” Start before you get out of bed in the morning with a few easy stretches specifically for your stiff areas–warm up back muscles, for instance, by bringing your knees to your chest and gently bouncing them (do one at a time if that’s more comfortable), or loosen up a stiff ankle by flexing your foot and moving it around in a circle.

More vigorous exercise is important too. “Strong muscles take some of the pressure off the joints,” says Dr. Shoor. “Many studies have shown that strengthening the muscles in the front of the thigh will reduce arthritis pain in the knees.” Riding a stationary bike helps work those thighs, and walking is one of the easiest and best overall conditioners. Check with your doctor before embarking on an exercise program, and take it slow: Begin with five or ten minutes a day, then gradually work up to half an hour, five to seven days a week.

If the pain is bad and it’s hard to work out on your own, consider a physical therapist. In just a few sessions (or maybe only one), an expert can show you how to exercise safely and can tailor a workout to your needs. Physical therapists may also suggest devices, such as a wrist splint or a knee brace, to correct movement or posture problems. Check before you schedule an appointment: Some states–and insurance companies–require a physician’s referral.

2. Go ergonomic

Make sure that your workstation–whether at home or in the office–is set up correctly. You need a chair that keeps your head and spine aligned as well as a keyboard that’s low enough so that your wrists don’t have to bend forward or back. If you’re on the phone a lot, invest in a headset. While you’re sitting, fidget. “Have a five-year-old child as your role model,” advises Dr. Jurisson. And get up for a real break at least once every hour. “There isn’t any posture that’s good for your joints if you sit in it for hours and hours,” she says.

3. Sleep well

For sounder rest, cut back on caffeine and alcohol, avoid beverages after dinner (so you don’t keep waking up to go to the bathroom), and give yourself time to wind down in the evening–no late-night bill paying, Web surfing, or TV news watching. Research suggests that the kindest mattress for your back is not super-hard, as we used to think, but medium-firm. If you have neck pain, try a contoured pillow–experiment with different types and sizes.

4. Change the temperratuer

For an acute injury, such as a sprained ankle, apply ice. The cold will reduce inflammation as well as the pain from swelling. But, says Dr. Gotlin, for sore or tense muscles, or other ongoing aches, it’s your choice–ice or heat. “Go with whichever feels better,” he advises. To protect your skin, put a layer of fabric (lightweight wool is best) between you and the ice pack or heating pad, applying either three or four times a day, for no longer than ten minutes, with 15-minute breaks between applications. Don’t apply heat or cold if you have circulation problems, nerve damage, skin sensitivity, or an infection.

Drug relief: tips to keep you safe

You can’t miss the headlines: In recent months, one painkiller after another has come under a cloud. First Vioxx was taken off the market when studies showed that it increased the chances of heart attack. Two other drugs (Bextra and Celebrex) that belong to the same group of cox-2 inhibitors, as well as the over-the-counter Aleve (naproxen sodium), were also linked to heart problems. In addition, Bextra was implicated in a rare but serious skin reaction. As of late December, Celebrex, Bextra, and Aleve hadn’t been withdrawn, but researchers were planning to take a closer look.

Does that you mean you have to grin and bear your aches? No. Remember that cardiovascular risks tended to be found when patients were taking these drugs for long periods, especially at high doses.

Still, to be safe, experts advise that you:

  • TALK TO YOUR DOCTOR before taking any painkiller, even over-the-counter brands. Depending on family history and your own current health problems, one type might be less risky for you than another.
  • DON’T EXCEED THE RECOMMENDED DOSAGE unless a physician advises it. If the suggested amount doesn’t relieve your pain, you might do better with another medicine.
  • PAY ATTENTION TO SIDE EFFECTS. Tell your doctor about any new symptoms; they could be linked to your medication.
  • DON’T FORGET NONDRUG APPROACHES. Losing weight, working out, and using devices like splints can relieve pain. Even if you do need medication, don’t abandon these strategies.

See your doctor if you have …

  • Sharp or stabbing pain
  • Pain that radiates along the arm, leg, or elsewhere in the body
  • Pain that’s accompanied by other symptoms, such as a fever, weight loss, weakness, or a change in skin color
  • Pain that gets worse, keeps you awake at night, lasts longer than a week or two, or that simply makes you uneasy.

Any of these could be a sign of a more serious problem that needs medical attention.

Jun 05

Live for yourself !

Live for yourself first

Live for yourself firstThose who made mistakes once or twice, then tried to escape but they couldn’t. It’s because they didn’t believe in themselves and they don’t think that everything would be okay.

Those who have misconceptions or hesitation, accidently underestimate themselves. There comes a time when surrounding people will not feel their existence. They are forgotten.

Those who feel they are not perfect, they are nothing. They are asking unbelievable things, then they don’t live in the present, forget the past and even lose the future.

But those who are being treated unfairly, despised or misunderstood…, they always told themselves that: “That’s all right, everything will be fine”. They overcome everything and they still exist.

Or those who always smile even when others are crying. It’s just because they always remind themselves to learn how to accept sufferings and difficulties in the life and consider them as Math exercises. Of course, all exercises have answers. Calm people can solve easily while hasty people often get irritated and annoyed only.

Why there are differences like that?

Because of selfishness and prejudices which human created.

Stop thinking about yourself so much that you can’t realize good things around you.

Stop putting on your favorite styled jean because it looks so ridiculous.

Do not dare to go to the brasserie because it is said that drinking is not good. 

Do not dare to say “no” when someone ask you to do what you don’t like just because you are afraid of that they will not talk to you any more. Instead of trying to please other ‘s thoughts about you, you fix your unperfected things first. That your decision, not anyone else, provided that it is really right.

Respect good things you have done. Though they are not too much to be seen by the whole world, enough for your loved ones to be proud of you.

Live for yourself. When you do it, you will know how magic your ability is because you can do extraordinary things.

Do good things for yourself

make-yourself-happyBefore being hurt by someone, you should know how to protect yourself, how to “immune” from “lies”. If you don’t want to be disappointed, you shouldn’t believe easily.

It is said that girls often get tragedy because of their weakness. We are living in complex emotions. Why do we have to live like that? Why do we not live in another way?

Get rid of invisible constraints, run away from hard responsibility that bonding us everyday. Take advantage of young age, do everything for yourself first.

Be strong to overcome challenges, lift your head up to accept bad reputation to continue be yourself. Your distinct personality, independence and frankness is said to be not good things. But why we have to change ourselves just because of nonsensical gossip. 

Love a good man and do not be fooled by tricks of “gamers” who just want to play a game. True love is not only temporary emotion but also sustainability and beliefs. Good men will make their women happy no matter what happen. And we have a responsibility to choose for ourselves men like that.

Each person’s life maybe have many storms, maybe we make wrong decision and then pay heavy price for these mistakes. But when we know how to fix them, think positively, everything will be okay. When you live with hope, your life will be more meaningful.

Prime of life is short. When you spend much time suffering from hurts, you will abandon yourself.

Because no one can choose happiness. If you want it to belong to you, you have to get it by yourself. So, why don’t you love yourself a bit more?

Live for yourself, do not live for anyone else. Each person has a different life. Don’t think that you have to follow someone for all life. Use your heels to go to the final ladder.

Your future depends on many things but mostly on you. Your success and happiness lies in you. Resolve to keep happy, and your joy and you shall form an invincible host against difficulties.

Most importantly, you start smiling more

When you are at your happiest, you are at your most helpful to the world. You shpuld strive to be your happiest and do good thnings that make you feel happy every day. You are able to show up more for others when you stary showing up for yourself first. So go out and make a schedule for an yoga class, take a walk in the park and go out for lunch, get yourself a massgae. After all, you are pretty fabulous.

Jun 04

15 health secrets every woman must know

What if we told you that at this very moment, you have the power to fend off bladder infections, protect your bones, and slash your risk for breast cancer–without subjecting yourself to major lifestyle changes? That’s right: Just a tweak here and there to your everyday routine is all it takes to minimize or completely prevent many minor (read: annoying) and major (read: potentially life-threatening) women‘s – health problems. Redbook consulted leading medical experts to bring you this low-maintenance guide to keeping yourself healthy for years to come.


1. Walk the dog

Women who are active five or more hours a day–performing such everyday tasks as cleaning the house and dashing to and from their desks–have a 31 to 41 percent lower risk for breast cancer than more sedentary women. Staying active may help slash your odds of getting this disease by reducing your body’s levels of the hormones that stimulate the growth of breast cancer cells.

2. Stop self-treating those “yeast infections”

Sixty-eight percent of women misdiagnose themselves as having yeast infections–even if they’ve had them before. In these cases they’re suffering from a more serious infection, such as bacterial vaginosis (BV) or trichomoniasis, either of which can produce a discharge with a strong unpleasant smell, burning, and itching. If you have BV during pregnancy, it can lead to preterm birth and low birth weight.

Is it ever OK to tackle a suspected yeast problem yourself? If visits to the doctor have twice confirmed that you’ve correctly identified key symptoms (cottage-cheese-like discharge, itching, redness, irritation), it’s probably safe to self-treat. But if you’ve previously misdiagnosed yourself or you get more than three infections a year–a sign you may need a stronger (i.e., prescription) antifungal cream–see a doc when you feel the itch.

3. Ready, set, squeeze

As many as 30 percent of all women in their 30s suffer from occasional stress incontinence–urine leaking during lifting, laughing, sneezing, or jumping. One big culprit: weakened muscles after childbirth. Giving birth can strain the pelvic floor muscles, which contract around the urethra to hold urine in. But 67 percent of women in a recent study overcame their urine-leakage problems by toning up with Kegel exercises.

Even if you did them for the suggested ten minutes twice a day during your pregnancy, try ’em again. “Most women don’t get results from Kegels, because they do them wrong,” says David Staskin, director of female urology at Cornell-New York Hospital Medical Center.

To perfect your technique, lie down, insert one or two fingers in your vagina, and contract the muscles; you should feel pressure on your fingers. You have to do Kegels regularly for four to six weeks to see results; to stay dry in the meantime, cross your legs and lean forward when you feel a cough, sneeze, or convulsive laugh coming on. Research shows that this simple technique prevents embarrassing dribbles in 73 percent of women. If none of the above helps, ask your gyno for advice.

4. Swallow some vitamin C and E …

vitamin-eBoth are disease-fighting antioxidants that help protect against ovarian cancer. A new study found that women who took daily supplements of at least 90 milligrams of vitamin C and 30 milligrams or more of vitamin E had almost half the risk of developing ovarian cancer as those who consumed supplements containing smaller amounts of these vitamins. The benefit was found to come solely from supplements; consuming C and E in the form of food didn’t appear to have the protective effect. One reason may be that “women who use supplements tend to be more health conscious in general,” notes lead researcher Aaron T. Fleischauer, Ph.D., of the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. While the doses in the study were slightly higher than the U.S. recommended dietary allowance for these vitamins, they’re well within what’s considered the safe range, says Fleischauer.

5. … and some folic acid

A recent study of 329 women found that those with cervical cancer or precancerous conditions were 30 percent more likely to be low in folic acid than women with normal Pap smears. Also, if you’re consuming an adequate amount of folic acid when you conceive, you’ll cut in half the risk that your baby will suffer from a potentially deadly neural tube defect. Getting enough of this nutrient is easy: Have one cup of fortified breakfast cereal daily (Total, Grape-Nuts, and many others contain 100 percent of the RDA of folic acid) or take a folic acid supplement (400 mcg).

6. Beat the burn

Anyone who’s ever suffered from cystitis–a bladder infection that causes burning and stinging–knows that it’s no picnic. To prevent repeated bouts:

  • Down more water. You’ll pee more, thus flushing bacteria out of your urinary tract. Speaking of which …
  • Urinate right after sex. All that thrusting can push infection-causing bacteria into the urethral opening; urinating after sex may prevent the bacteria from traveling up into the bladder.
  • Swallow two concentrated cranberry tablets daily. Women in a University of British Columbia study who popped these pills cut their number of yearly bladder infections in half.

7. Get some sun


You may help cut your risk for breast cancer. Exposure to the sun spurs your body’s production of vitamin D, a nutrient thought to help inhibit the growth of tumors. According to several studies, this may help explain why deaths from breast cancer in the sunny southwestern U.S. are half what they are in the Northeast. What’s more, getting some sun may up your odds of conceiving. In a study of 657 women undergoing in vitro fertilization, the greatest number of babies were conceived in the months with the most hours of daylight.

In the spring and summer, you can get all the D you need from 15 minutes of sunshine without sunscreen a day; during the darker fall and winter months, take a vitamin D supplement (400 to 600 IUs), which is as effective as direct sunny rays.

8. Quit smoking already

Fewer than 39 percent of women realize that smoking increases their risk for infertility, cervical cancer, ectopic pregnancy, miscarriage, and early menopause, according to a Yale University School of Medicine study. And even if you want to quit, if you’re a typical smoker you’ve tried–and failed–five times, reports the American Lung Association.

But according to a recent study, you’ll be almost four times as likely to stay off cigarettes for six months if you take Zyban, a new non-nicotine smoking-cessation pill (available by prescription only) in combination with an over-the-counter nicotine-replacement patch (such as NicoDerm CQ) than if you go cold turkey.

The other benefit of this approach: Because it lessens your craving for cigarettes, you won’t have to find another means–such as gorging on food–of satisfying yourself while you quit smoking. Translation: You’ll be less likely to substitute one big butt problem for another.

9. Wear a sports bra

In a recent study of 200 women with menstrual-cycle-related breast pain, 85 percent of those who wore a sports bra daily for 12 weeks reported complete relief of symptoms. “A supportive bra minimizes breast movement, which can be painful when your breasts feel tender and swollen,” says Julia Alleyne, M.D., medical director of sports medicine at Sunnybrook and Women’s College Health Sciences Center in Toronto. Women with a C-cup or larger get best results from bras with molded cups, which support each breast separately. Smaller-breasted women may prefer compression sports bras, which work by holding the breasts against the body.

10. Ask for this important test

At your next checkup, ask for a blood TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone) test; it measures how well that gland–which helps regulate metabolism–is functioning. Disorders of the thyroid are a cause of common troubles, such as between-period spotting, light or heavy periods, depression, weight gain, anxiety, hair loss, dry skin, and fatigue. You must be tested if you’re trying to become pregnant, because even minor, asymptomatic thyroid deficiency can lower your baby’s IQ significantly.

11. Don’t blow off bloating

If you’re constantly puffed up when you aren’t expecting your period, it may signal something serious, such as ovarian or colorectal cancer. True, these conditions are more likely to strike those over 40, but when they do occur earlier, women and their doctors often dismiss the symptoms, since they mimic those of menstrual-cycle-and pregnancy-related woes as well as those of irritable bowel syndrome. Other warning signs: persistent cramps (not during menstruation), frequent constipation or diarrhea, prolonged loss of appetite, unusual fatigue, unexplained weight loss, and rectal or unexplained vaginal bleeding.

Since it can be easily overlooked, there’s an increased chance that by the time ovarian or colorectal cancer is correctly diagnosed in a younger woman, the disease will have spread and become harder–or impossible–to cure. If you have any of the above symptoms, ask your doctor if you should have a colonoscopy to check for colon cancer, and a transvaginal ultrasound, which can detect ovarian cancer in its early stages.

12. Take a look “down there”

That’s right. Once a month get out a handheld mirror and examine the outside of your vagina for:

  • New dark freckles. They can be a sign of vulvar cancer, a relatively rare form of skin cancer that can be lethal if not diagnosed early. If caught in time, it’s 90 percent curable.
  • Any new lump or bump. It could be anything from an infected hair follicle to a blocked gland to a benign cyst to (less likely) vulvar cancer. Get it checked by a doctor if it doesn’t go away in two weeks.
  • Small white spots, or the skin becoming thin or “papery.” You may have lichen sclerosis, a disorder of the vaginal skin (and sometimes the anus) that may be caused by hormonal imbalances and that can be treated with prescription medications. Untreated, LS can cause vaginal lips to shrink and the vaginal opening to narrow.

13. Consider the Pill

It lowers your odds of developing endometrial cancer. This advice goes for all premenopausal women who don’t smoke or have high blood pressure or other cardiovascular-disease risk factors (since in combination with those things, the Pill increases your risk for blood clots as well as stroke). The progestin in the Pill may counteract the effects of estrogen, a hormone known to speed cell division in endometrial cancer. The Pill may also help fight against ovarian cancer, bone loss, menstrual cramps, cycle irregularities, ovarian cysts, acne, and pelvic inflammatory disease.

14. Check out “the girls”

Some 65 percent of you don’t do monthly breast self-exams, research shows. We know your excuses thanks to a study conducted at Strang Cancer Prevention Center in New York. Here’s how to get past them:

  • “No one finds lumps that way.” Wrong; 71 percent of cancers in women aged 20 to 44 are found via self-exam.
  • “I’m afraid.” It’s scary to think you’ll feel a lump, but this is scarier: The average size of a lump found accidentally (e.g., while showering) by women who don’t perform regular BSEs is one and a half inches in diameter. That’s three times larger (and so, if malignant, at a more advanced stage of cancer) than the average lump found during monthly self-exams.
  • “I don’t know the right way to do it.” Get a great how-to tutorial at www.komen.org.
  • “I keep forgetting.” Make a pact with a friend to exchange monthly BSE reminders.

15. Sleep naked

OK, so no formal studies have confirmed the wisdom of going au naturel at night. But it’s common sense, says New York ob/gyn Mary Jane Bovo. Those snug jeans, panties, and/or exercise shorts you wear all day tend to trap heat and dampness–and that can create an environment that encourages the growth of yeast and ups the risk of delicate vaginal tissue becoming irritated. Giving the vagina a breather may help you avoid vaginal infections and irritation.

Jun 02

What next for health and safety?

Fatalities at work, such a common–and awful fact of working life 40 years ago, have been vastly reduced through a combination of state intervention and changes in the workplace. People have less frequent contact with hazardous processes now; many hazardous materials (such as asbestos) have been banned or their exposure strictly controlled. Procedures for identifying, monitoring or reporting risks, injury and ill-health are widespread and well understood, When it comes to work-related risks, it is a commonplace that the UK’s health and safety framework is robust, credible and largely effective.


Naturally, health and safety legislation over the past 40 years has been weighted to tackle the risks arising from industries prevalent during this time, such as heavy manufacture. The framework, some argue, is therefore dominated by risks to safety, focused on traditional and, in some cases, declining, industries mostly employing men under permanent contract. There is a question whether the framework or the topics we focus on are the right ones for the future.

The challenges facing the country’s health and well-being are profound. The costs associated with ill-health–whether from reduced economic productivity or increased public spending–are likely to rise in the coming years. In the UK alone, the state spends over 12bn [pounds sterling] a year on health-related benefits and forgone taxes and employers face a 9bn [pounds sterling] bill. This is at a time when resources available to the Health and Safety Executive and local authorities to spend on enforcement and an ageing workforce that is more vulnerable to injury and ill-health are ever shrinking.

With many more of us working in the service sector, interacting with other people in sometimes highly pressurised circumstances, and in ways that can be antagonistic or reduce personal interaction to a series of mechanical gestures, the resulting stress, anxiety and depression not only severely undermine the well-being of workers, but reduce the quality of service that people can provide. We see this in the education sector, where, in a recent survey of 3500 teachers, 83 per cent reported workplace stress. Over two-thirds had considered quitting the profession and over half had seen a doctor in relation to their health.

Yet so far the response to this issue, for different reasons, has not been very effective. It may be that the health and safety profession has not always helped itself in this regard: too eager to turn health and safety into a dry management and compliance issue, separate from engaging political debate.

Although the depoliticisation of health and safety has probably been a consequence of how workplace injury is no longer a typical feature of working life–or reflects a desire to keep it apart from trade union activism–in the context of the health challenges facing us, now would seem a good time to repoliticise the debate.

That is why the British Safety Council wrote to six of the main political parties in advance of the election on 7 May to get their views on what they would do about health and safety in the next parliament. We asked the parties to respond to questions about the adequacy of enforcement and how the regulator is funded; we asked about the role of the workplace in addressing the health, both physical and mental, of people at work; and we asked about what incentives each party would like to develop to encourage investment in health and safety, through, for instance, taxation.

We await their responses with interest. Health and safety is hardly going to be a priority for manifestos or government policy; it rarely seems to excite the media much beyond “nanny state” rhetoric. Yet, most people understand the importance of their health and well-being and the implicit fairness that, in working for a business, we should expect its care and protection. Politicians who pay no heed to this most fundamental right do so at their peril. Whoever is in government after 7 May should remember this.

May 14


Not long ago, I was dining with a friend who shares my passion for chocolate as well as my struggle with the scale. At dessert, I’m digging into my multilayered Napoleon while she is oh-so-discreetly unwrapping a single Hershey’s Kiss. After inhaling its heady aroma, she starts nibbling, pausing between bites to savor the sensation. We finish at the same time, except the damage to her waistline is a mere 25 calories. Mine? Don’t ask.Moderation

What’s her secret? Moderation. That dull but reliable compass always points to good health. Yet so often we reject it for something more, well, alluring. And then we fall into the all-or-nothing trap. We either take to the couch with a slab of fudge or we do 100 laps. Why, oh, why can’t we get the pendulum in perfect balance?

For example: Everyone knows that eating nutritiously is one of the keys to good health–not to mention controlling your weight. But it sounds so boring compared with diving into the latest fad diet (anyone for grapefruit?). And why take a half-hour walk–the hallmark of moderate physical activity–when we can buy a belly blaster or a Thighmaster (and then watch it collect dust in the closet)? By shunning moderation, we know that we’re setting ourselves up for failure. We’ve been down this road before, and it almost always ends badly-with an industrial-size bag of M&M’s or something of that ilk.

When it comes to diet, straddling the middle isn’t really difficult, but it does require being savvy about the food we eat and how much of it we consume. People avoid moderation “because they are constantly searching for an instant solution,” says Randi Konikoff Beranbaum, R.D., of the Friedman School of Nutrition at Tufts University, ill Boston. “The appeal of some fad diets is that you don’t have to think about a food-you can just eliminate it” (or eat it compulsively). A moderate diet is built on a foundation of fruits and vegetables, breads and grains, low-fat dairy products, and fats and oils that you eat sparingly. You can have what you want every day, but in portions that are sensible, not supersize.

walk-exerciseModeration is not about good foods or bad foods,” insists Jeanette Newton Keith, M.D., head of the weight-loss clinic at the University of Chicago. “Even vegetarians can be obese if they overeat, and a healthy diet can include chocolate.” The key is to eat mindfully, not mindlessly. Yes, you can have that scoop of ice cream–just don’t stand in front of the freezer with a carton of Ben & Jerry’s in one hand and a spoon in the other.

As for exercise, “a lot of people think ‘no pain, no gain,” and it’s simply not true,” says Heather Chambliss, Ph.D., an exercise scientist at the Cooper Institute, in Dallas. “The exercise regimen that works best is the one you actually do.” But how much is enough? According to the latest research, about an hour a day of moderate activity (see “60-Minute Workout? Don’t Sweat It,” above). And what exactly is moderate? Here’s an example: On a walk, keep to a pace that allows you to talk, but not to sing. If you want to rev up the intensity go ahead and take a swim or hit the treadmill. Whatever you do, make sure it’s mildly enjoyable. “Otherwise you’ll drop out, and there’s no health benefit in that,” says Chambliss.

Such real-world advice is both encouraging (I can do this]) and dispiriting, because it implies a lifelong commitment. So can you ever throw caution to the wind and hit the buffet table with a vengeance? Once in a while, say experts. It’s not the Thanksgiving feast that makes you fat–it’s when the orgy goes nonstop till Valentine’s Day. “Nobody gets fat in one day,” says Beranbaum. “You can bend the rules as long as you get back on track.”

Makes sense to me. These days, I travel with a single Hershey’s Kiss. And since I’ll never use the StairMaster every day, I’ve added a little salsa dancing to my exercise mix. In this fat-phobic, diet-obsessed world, I’m setting the dial to “medium” for long-term results.

FACT: Women eat one out of every four meals at a restaurant, a 66% increase over the last 20 years.

FACT: Dark chocolate has more antioxidants than milk or white.Dark-chocolate