Thursday, 30 August 2012

High Cholesterol Medication

Taken from What Doctors Don't Tell You (WDDTY.com) Take heed before you decide to submit to medication for high cholesterol.

An Oxford professor believes that everyone over the age of 50 should consider taking a cholesterol-lowering statin – especially as it’s never been proven the drugs have major side-effects, he claims. Unless you suffer from a rare genetic defect called familial hypercholesterolemia, the advice is poor, and may even be dangerous – and 900 studies that point to the drug’s dangers suggest it is.

Sir Rory Collins, at the university’s clinical trial service unit, says drug regulators are overstating the dangers of the drug, and are putting people off from taking it as a protection against heart disease. Statins are designed to lower levels of ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol that block arteries.

Apart from a small risk of myopathy, or muscle weakness, there are no other proven side-effects from a statin, he says.
Instead, everyone over the age of 50 should consider taking a statin as a just-in-case therapy to protect against heart disease and stroke, he recommends.

Sir Roy’s advice is wrong – and could be dangerous. More than 900 studies have discovered a wide range of side-effects, from cataracts, memory loss, anaemia, and even cancer.

As previous WDDTY reports have demonstrated (http://www.wddty.com/the-cholesterol-myth.html), LDL isn’t even‘bad’ cholesterol at all, but has an essential part to play, especially as we age. The only people who will benefit from a statin are those suffering from familial hypercholesterolemia, a rare genetic disorder that prevents the body from stabilising cholesterol levels normally.

(Source: Daily Telegraph, 29th August, 2012).


Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Beth Tweddle wins Olympic bronze

The amazing Beth Tweddle showed drive, determination, doggedness and superb ability to clinch the bronze medal at yesterday's Competition. She came in to the Olympics knowing she wanted to win a medal. She trained six and a half days a week having taken up the sport aged 7.
At 27 she has never doubted her ability to get a medal and her hard work paid off.
She has shown what can be achieved when you really want something and one can apply her success to any aspect of life.
So when your willpower wanes, think of Beth and ask yourself whether she would give up before reaching her goal? No, of course she wouldn't. She is an inspiration and I would urge you to let her inspire you.
Congratulations Beth. I along with many others salute you. 0 comments

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Self Belief

We're on day 2 of the Olympics and today two of our top Athletes win Silver and Bronze medals.
Lizzie Armitstead got her first bike aged 15. Today aged 23 she won the first team GB medal. She has show than through sheer determination, drive and belief in herself, she can be a winner.
Beccy Adlington came home with golds in Beijing. Today she swam in the 400m freestyle (not her distance) and through sheer determination, drive and belief in herself, she can be a winner.
Our personal goals may not award us medals from Olympic committees or sports associations but it doesn't mean that when we achieve them they are any less worthy.
Set your goals and with sheer determination, drive and belief in yourself you too can be a winner. 0 comments

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

The Buffet - Don't let it be a disaster zone.

When on holiday this summer, chances are you'll walk into a restaurant and find a buffet either at breakfast, lunch or dinner or all three.
This can be a disaster but it needn't be.
Firstly opt for the smallest plate available for each course.
Avoid all salads laced in mayonnaise.
Only go to the buffet table once per course.
Steer clear of fried foods.
Stick with a starter and main unless this is a meal where you have decided to have a dessert. (See previous blog post).
Try and avoid the bottomless bread basket.
If all else fails and you find yourself indulging try and minimise the damage by doing an extra walk or swim. Above all, have fun.

How not to gain weight on holiday.

It's holiday/vacation time and the focus is on looking good in your swimwear, the weather, the food and the alcohol. So how do you ensure you have a great time without feeling guilt about what excesses you have had to eat or drink.

Here are some tips that you might fine useful:
1. Decide before you go away exactly what you're "poison" is going to be. If it's ice cream, alcohol, cooked breakfast or something else, you decide. Only choose one thing.
2. Assuming you're away for two weeks, now choose the number of times you want to indulge. It's your choice but stick with that number.
3. As long as you stick with your number, you have given yourself permission and you will not feel any guilt.
4. Whatever you choose, make sure it's the best of whatever it is. No point wasting an indulgence on rubbish.
5. Have a great vacation. Smile often and laugh loads. Walk lots too. 0 comments

Saturday, 30 June 2012

Preparing to cycle at Tesco

Lots of balloons to blow up, pictures to print off of my cycle ride and banners to sort out. Busy busy busy.

I'm wondering what snacks and drinks to take with me and then I thought, "dopey Dora! You're at Tesco, you can pop in for a banana!"

I hope another five hours in the saddle won't have the same effect on my lady bits as three days did!!!

Two hours to go and I'd better get my skates on. More later. 0 comments

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

After 230 miles of cycling, I'm home at last!!

Home at last!  What an amazing 4 days I've just had.  I set off on Friday morning knowing no-one in a group of 36 people and I've come home with 36 friends.  Special mention must go to my room mate Julie Daly who was a brilliant room mate and she's way stronger than she thinks.  She set off on Friday on a mountain bike with no clips and no cradle on her pedals and managed to make it to Portsmouth with only a few bruises.  Thankfully Expedition Wise (our organisers) had a spare road bike and Julie was soon flying.

I'd also like to mention Mike, Aussie Paul and Tony (Ward), with whom I cycled for the best part of 2 days.  Guys, you let me take the lead and I gather you regretted it!  Special mention too to Tall Paul who was an absolute gentleman.  He caught up with me on Day 1 when I was cycling mostly on my own and stayed with me for quite a while was I was on my own.  I know he did the same for Julie Daly and Tony (Reeves) and I'm sure for many others along the way.  He is a great cyclist and a true gent.

The first leg to Portsmouth can only be described as OK and uneventful in terms of the cycling.  The wind was lashing and at times we had a few light showers but I managed to get to our first stop before the rain came down.
This was our first lunch stop when we were just introducing ourselves to each other. 

After lunch we headed to the next stop, a delighted pub in Surrey somewhere.  I'd like to know where, as it was a lovely pub which I would like to visit again. Does anyone recognise it?

After the pub, our final stop was in Portsmouth at the Travelodge by the port.  We had 4 rooms between us in which to shower and change before a very mediocre carvery at the pub next door!
Dinner over, we walked from the hotel (minus our bikes which were on a van) to the port to board our ferry to Caen.  When I'd asked JDRF who I would be sharing with, I didn't realise that on the ferry night I would be in a cabin with 3 other women so it was quite a squeeze.
Despite having cycled 74 miles, it took all of us ages to get to sleep.  We arrived next morning in Caen and after disembarking we were re-united with our bikes to begin our 85 mile ride to Evreux. For some of the way I teamed up with the above mentioned Tony (Ward) which was great.

First stop was a pretty Normandie village with an excellent patisserie where I purchased this delicious pain aux raisins.

At this point, some of the gung-ho chaps who'd ridden hell for leather the day before decided that enough was enough and asked (yes asked!!) if they could ride with me.  Who wouldn't be flattered at that?  I of course said yes.

So from then on had constant cycle companions and it certainly makes the time go quicker when you're chatting to people.  It was great to find out people's stories and really get to know them.

We had a second morning stop at another equally pretty village and we sat in glorious sunshine to have our coffee.  No pain aux raisins here but I did buy a Bounty to eat on the road. (As it happened I ended up sharing out my Bounty so only had half of one bar which hit the spot).

Lunch that day was interesting.  We arrived at the designated stop point and walked into the restaurant.  Layed out at each space was a pasta salad and a piece of bread.  I tucked in and felt full at the end of it and thought that was the meal.  However, the chef came out with hot plates and began to serve something he called "boeuf" which was actually ox tongue.  Not one of my or anyone else's favourites.  

We gave it a miss and went for a coffee to a local bar,  Much better.  

Lunch over it was back on the bikes and a 23 mile stretch on an old train line which has been converted to a cycle track.  Although the cycling was rather boring with nothing to see on either side, it made a welcome relief from pot-holed roads.  By now I had got into a routine with Mike and Paul and occassionally Tony and we made it in good time to our next stop.  It was helpful to think of each day in the various stages rather than in a chunk of 85 miles.

When we arrived here, the local firemen were training up the new cadets in a field beside us. It was quite mesmerising to watch them instead of think how sore my undercarriage was.  By now, any opportunity to raise myself out of the saddle was most welcome.  Some of the guys - actually most of them - were complaining of sore butts but that wasn't an issue for me!

Our final ride on the track took us into Evreux where we camped for the night at a budget IBIS hotel in the centre of town. 

By now I was feeling very tired indeed so a quick meal out was followed by a stroll back to the hotel and to bed.  Julie and I slept very soundly that night until the alarm went off at 5.30 the following morning.

A hearty breakfast watched over by a little Hitler in the Ibis restaurant was followed by more cycling once we had been briefed on the day's challenges.  Immediately on leaving Evreux we had to climb one of four steep hills and because it was almost at the beginning of our day's ride, my legs felt a bit stiff but I made it up and quickly caught up with Mike and Paul.

I broke my no-caffeine rule and decided that perhaps a shot of caffeine was exactly what was needed to help me get up all the hills so I had an espresso at our first stop.

Coming down a glorious hill with Tony, he told me all about an experience he'd had at the golf course with a heron and fox which definitely whiled away a bit of time as we headed into another picturesque village to stop for lunch.

This was the best lunch yet.  We started with this scrumptious rice salad followed by fillet steak and boulangere potatoes.  Both were so tasty.  After a dubious dessert we left, safe in the knowledge that we were inching every closer to our final destination.

This stage of the challenge included a two mile climb which was challenging not least because by now the sun was blazing down on us.  We stopped for a photo moment as we reached the summit and realised that we could see Paris in the distance.

A final break on the outskirts of Paris with 14 miles to go and no toilets was interesting for some but for me it was like from home from home.  I just imagined I was in Black Park and sought out a secluded spot.

We stopped to regroup beside a beautiful waterfall in the Bois de Bologne.

I must confess that at this stage I was seriously worrying about the state of my ladybits.  I decided to be practical and turned my back as re-lubed myself. Not pretty but very necessary.

At this point, the slowest riders went to the front and the faster ones went to the back and we cycled into Paris in pairs.  We made slow progress due to heavy heavy traffic but eventually we saw the Arc de Triomphe ahead of us.  I was with Tony Ward on this bit and I was very worried that I wouldn't get out of my clips in time and that I would fell into him.  I needn't have worried as this never happened.

By now we had Brian from Expedition Wise - the organisers - ahead of us in his car and Emma also from Expedition Wise, bringing up the rear.  We began ringing our bells and cheering especially when the Eiffel Tower finally hove into view. I must confess, I felt very emotional at this point and tried to laugh off my tears.

We finally hit the Eiffel Tower and ahead we heard screams as friends and relatives had gathered to greet us.  We had made it.  All 229 miles! Yes my undercarriage might have been sore but the only other mishap on the way (for me) was that my chain slipped off.  Apart from that, there were no serious problems to report at all.

Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation had taken 36 riders across the channel and set them down in Paris all in one piece.  If you haven't sponsored me and would like to do so, you can go to www.justgiving.com/sarah-liveing1

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