Crash Diet – Emotional Fallout

Crash Diet – Emotional Fallout

A couple of conversations I’ve had in the past few days reminded me of just how dangerous fasts and crash diets can be, emotionally if not physically. When the allocated time is up, you love the fact that you’ve lost weight but you’re feeling so hungry and deprived that your willpower will be tested to its limit. I believe that using willpower to control behaviour is like holding...

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Living My Life For A Dog

Living My Life For A Dog

Jimmy is the sweetest, best-behaved, most entertaining dog I’ve ever owned. Now I’m living on my own he’s great company. Without him, I’m not sure I’d be quite so committed to my daily half-hour walk. And, while he’s hardly big or ferocious enough to protect me from a determined attacker, he’s certainly alert and noisy enough to warn me if anyone were trying to break...

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If pregnant women should minimise their exposure to everyday chemicals, shouldn’t we all?

If pregnant women should minimise their exposure to everyday chemicals, shouldn’t we all?

A couple of days ago, the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) released a Scientific Impact Paper recommending that pregnant women be made aware of all possible sources of chemical exposure in order to minimise harm to their unborn child. This paper is called Chemical exposures during pregnancy: Dealing with potential, but unproven, risks to child health (my italics). If we...

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A Fruit Fly Made Me Do It

A Fruit Fly Made Me Do It

It seems bizarre to worry about pesticides in food when you’re being pumped full of chemicals so toxic that you have to flush the loo twice for fear of injuring the person who uses it after you. However, as I was being treated for cancer that had already spread into my lymph nodes, I was inclined to do anything within reason that might help me to get well, ‘Within reason’, of course, means...

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Is Alcoholism Really a Function of Cheap Alcohol? I’m not Convinced

Is Alcoholism Really a Function of Cheap Alcohol? I’m not Convinced

The article at www.guardian.co.uk/society/2013/may/30/hospital-admissions-alcohol-million-year discusses National Health Service findings that, in 2011-12, an estimated 1.22 million hospital admissions in England were linked to drinking too much alcohol. This represents a 51 per cent rise over the past nine years. Not surprisingly, the figures drew more comment on the question of setting a...

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Of Short Blogs and Media/News/Press Releases

Of Short Blogs and Media/News/Press Releases

I’m sure anyone who has ever blogged can sympathise with Joan Stewart’s admission: “When it dawns on me that I haven’t blogged in a while, a feeling of dread sets in.” She goes on to describe a big breakthrough – finally accepting that each post doesn’t have to be a treatise. “I found myself reading the super-short posts at some blogs and actually LOVING the fact...

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Homophobia isn’t fear, it’s hatred – and it needs another name

Homophobia isn’t fear, it’s hatred – and it needs another name

France just became the ninth country in Europe and the 14th in the world to legalise same-sex marriage, but only after months of violent street protests and a rise in homophobic attacks. Meanwhile, in the Ukraine’s capital Kiev, gay rights campaigners are determined to stage a gay pride march next week despite a sharp rise in the number of attacks on homosexuals in the city. A recent Amnesty...

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After The Double Mastectomy We Worry About Our Daughters

After The Double Mastectomy We Worry About Our Daughters

When I discovered that I was carrying the BRCA2 gene fault I had already had both of my breasts removed. There had been a lump in one and there was enough worrying stuff going on in the other to support my preferred option.  As I say in You Can Get Through This!, I knew in my heart that leaving hospital braless, wearing a T-shirt and feeling flat but symmetrical would give me the best possible...

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In Praise Of The Ergonomic Keyboard

In Praise Of The Ergonomic Keyboard

Just about everything I do involves a keyboard – I spend between eight and 12 hours in front of my computer every day. Years ago I trained myself to use a mouse with both hands to balance out the strain on my wrists but, when I got to the point of strapping on wrist supports every morning, I decided I needed to do a bit more. Apparently, having your hands with the backs up and flat, as you do...

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A Mentor Is The Way To Go

A Mentor Is The Way To Go

A couple of days ago I interviewed the CEO of the Small Business Mentoring Service (SBMS) for an article I’m writing. The more we talked, the more I realised that a mentor is just what I need myself. One thing that resonated particularly strongly was the idea that people often know in their heart what they need to do but lack the confidence to do it. For ages now I’ve been making...

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