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Wed, 28th October 2015

The eternal quest for a slimmer figure surges on, but it is not really hard to achieve. Whilst books proliferate and magazine slimming articles pour forth in their thousands, the basics have not changed in a century. Simply eat a little less food each day. Eat less fatty and high carb foods. Make sure there are veggies, fruit, berries, nuts, cereals, lean meat, fish, low fat dairy products in the daily fare, varying this around as suits your taste. It is not hard.

Think First

Just think before you bite. The idea is to aim at a measurement of 93 cm or less at navel level for men, and 80 cm or less for women. Weigh regularly. Doctors once said monthly, then weekly, but now daily is the recommendation. If this jumps up by half a kg, follow this simply formula. Do not eat that day. Have two pieces of fruit only, and plenty of fluid, water being best. (Avoid sugary high kJ fizz drinks). Water is very filling. If it is a cold day, drink hot water. It's like a tube of no taste heat being poured into the centre of the system.


After a while, you can soon assess your weight and body profile. In bed lie on your back, and gently move your hand from chest down over the abdomen. Ideally, as you pass over the rib cage, the hand will suddenly descend. That's fine. If it goes up, that's not good. Quite apart from the cosmetics of overweight, the body hates excess abdominal fat which is now claimed to be as dangerous to the heart as smoking. It can readily work its way into the blood vessel system, clogging up vital arteries. Of course, as always, the 30 minute exercise routine is also vital, walking being simplest and best. This means the total amount of walking per day, not necessarily in one hit. It is really very easy and virtually costless.



I have been told that cranberry juice will help prevent or treat urinary tract infections, which have been bugging me over the past 9 months. This all started on my honeymoon.


Above average sexual activity (especially on the "honeymoon") greatly increases risks of recurring bladder infections called UTI. Germs are readily pushed into the short female urethra which takes fluid to the exterior, infecting the bladder causing frequency and burning. Quieten down on sex for a while. Cranberry is known to help kill off germs, but antibiotics are quicker and more effective. Cranberry capsules are more concentrated than fluid, which is also high in sugar. The female partner should drink lots of water before and after sex.

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Nearly everybody you speak to has undergone ultrasound for something, whether it be during pregnancy or suspected gallstones. But are all these invisible waves harmful?


Ultrasound, or sonography, uses sound waves which bounce through tissues and be either viewed on a screen or printed on film. It is believed they are harmless. They are widely used for many areas, and are now routine in pregnancy where they can pick up abnormalities at a very early stage of foetal life. It enables very accurate diagnosis, and takes away the guess work. It is another revolutionary technology which enables a better outcome, be it a baby, torn muscles, ligaments, gall stones and a long list of other internal disorders.

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The more times my mum goes to the doctor the more pills she seems to be prescribed. Does she need all this stuff forever?


Many acute disorders only require symptomatic treatment for a few days or weeks. But other long term or "chronic" ones will only gradually worsen with age. These may need medication for months, years or perhaps for life. Commonest are probably blood pressure, heart disorders and joint conditions. Unless these receive correct management, they will deteriorate at a greater rate. Nevertheless, all medication must be monitored regularly by the doctor. Today with combination and long acting tablets, often fewer are needed. Medication can often be reduced as the condition stabilises or improves.

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In hot weather I keep the air-con running all night, and often wake up next day with a clogged up nose which can lead to a cold.


During the night, ambient temperatures usually fall, and the body cools. Germs, ever present, are then ready to jump aboard, usually via the nasal passages. From here they track down to the throat and chest. The bodys automatic immune system can often control this. Best bet is to turn off the air con at night.

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If I get clogged up nostrils and use drops, for how long can I keep this going.


Most nasal congestion is due either to allergy or infection, causing swelling of vessels and overproduction of fluid in the nasal passageways. Drops arftificially cause "vaso-constriction", causing vessels to shrink for a few hours. Two to three days is considered maximum. Longer than this, there may be a "rebound" swelling of the vessels, and you maybe be worse off. Using salty water nasal spray (Narium Mist or similar from the pharmacist) is often excellent and harmless, simply being fluid similar to the bodys own brand.

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This health advice is general in nature. You are advised to seek medical attention from your doctor or health care provider for your own specific symptoms and circumstances.



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