Olivia’s Touch: Skincare for a Touch of Confidence

I used to pride myself on being extremely low maintenance; in fact, I considered myself a koboy long before it became trendy.

I was not one to spend hours on a skincare routine, nor one who is constantly on the lookout for new skincare products to try.

Being koboy about skincare was a lot easier back in my teens and twenties when I still had the gift of youth to back me up by forgiving the sins I commit against my skin (oh, those times when I refused to wear sunblock!), as well as the sheer luck of escaping my adolescent years mostly unscathed by teenage acne.

However, as I near the more challenging period of my forties, I do realize that I owe it to myself to give nature a helping hand by taking better care of myself.

Olivia's Touch
Olivia’s Touch
Olivia’s Touch
Olivia's Touch

Self-care is becoming even more important as I age, so I’m glad that Olivia’s Touch makes this easy.

Olivia’s Touch is a line of beauty products which are locally made and produced using the finest ingredients. These are dermatologically tested to be perfect for all skin types and were manufactured in cruelty-free conditions to bring about the fuss-free yet luxurious kind of skincare that’s right for me.

Olivia’s Touch
Olivia’s Touch
Olivia’s Touch
Olivia’s Touch

These include:

Signature Minute-White Lotion 250 ml

Now I can welcome the brightest days with much brighter skin, thanks to Olivia’s Touch Signature Minute-White Lotion.

It is enriched with anti-aging and antioxidant ingredients – SPF60 Sun Protect to shield your skin from the harmful effects of the sun’s UV rays; Arbutin that evens out your skin tone by lightening dark spots, acne marks and scars; Licorice Extract to reduce wrinkles and fine lines; and Niacinamide to reduce pores and treat hyperpigmentation.

Olivia’s Touch
Olivia’s Touch
Olivia's Touch
Olivia's Touch

After my morning shower and evening bath, I massage this lotion all over my body to enjoy its moisturizing and brightening effects for up 12 hours, giving my skin round-the-clock care.

Niacinamide Serum 20ml

The neglect I subjected my skin to back in my youth does haunt me from time to time in the form of breakouts, hyperpigmentation and (ack!) the beginnings of fine lines.

Olivia’s Touch Niacinamide Serum is formulated to counter these ill effects, thanks to its active ingredient Niacinamide which shields my skin from sun damage, encourages keratin growth to keep my skin firm and healthy and reduces oil production and pore size.

Olivia’s Touch
Olivia’s Touch
Olivia's Touch
Olivia's Touch

As part of my morning skincare routine, I massage this serum on my face and neck using my fingertips.

Sun Gel SPF 50 100ml

I have known for some time now that the sun, though vital to our survival and day-to-day life, does bring with it some harm in the form UV rays.

Olivia’s Touch Sun Gel SPF 50 helps shield my skin from the sun’s ill effects while minimizing pore blockage and other acne-causing substances. It is also infused with Aloe Vera Extract to keep my skin cool and moisturized, even when exposed to direct sunlight.

Olivia’s Touch
Olivia’s Touch
Olivia's Touch
Olivia's Touch

Before going out, I spread a small amount on my face and neck using my fingertips to afford me my much-needed sun protection. Reapplying every two hours is not a problem as it feels lightweight and is non-greasy.

Whipped Scrub 200ml

An integral part of any skincare routine is cleansing but how do I gently scrub away the day’s dirt and grime, as well as dead skin cells to reveal the radiant skin that I know (or hope!) is just waiting to come out?

Well, Olivia’s Touch Whipped Scrub is formulated exactly for this: it contains Dimethicone that softens and moisturizes; Carica Papaya Extract which has anti-aging and antioxidant properties; Aloe Vera Extract which soothes dry, damaged and sensitive skin; Arbutin to help with uneven skin tone; Niacinamide which protects skin from the harmful effects of sunlight, toxins and pollution; and Shea Butter to moisturize skin and also prevent aging.

Olivia’s Touch
Olivia’s Touch
Olivia's Touch
Olivia's Touch

During my evening bath, I gently massage this whipped scrub on my face and neck using circular motions, then leave it on for two minutes (fifteen to twenty minutes for the rest of my body) then rinse off and pat dry before proceeding to my moisturizing routine.

With these initial products, Olivia’s Touch has certainly equipped me with a simple and fuss-free skin care routine – in keeping with my koboy tendencies – but one that that’s all set to protect and maintain my skin so I face growing older with a healthy touch of confidence.

Olivia’s Touch
Olivia's Touch
Olivia's Touch
Olivia's Touch

Want to include Olivia’s Touch beauty products into your skin care routine to help out your skin’s radiance? Simply shop at oliviastouch.com and enjoy 10% off your purchase when you use my code “IGINFRAJ10.”

Olivia's Touch

Be sure to take good care of your Olivia’s Touch products so they can also take good care of you by storing them in a cool, clean and dry area, away from direct sunlight and heat.

Disclosure: Product samples were provided to facilitate this feature.

An honest promise to better skin: Celimax

Let’s face it: when you’ve reached the “wrong” side of forty, you have to step up on your skin care routine.

When you get to this stage, the sins of your past tend to catch up with you: the times when you stayed up at all hours, slept with your makeup on, or spent all day in the sun with no sunscreen on will start to leave their marks on your face and skin.

Hopefully, these sins of your youth against your present self are few and far between, and you still have so many years left in which to enjoy the skin that reflects how young and radiant you actually feel.

Personally, having grown up thinking that skincare simply involves washing my face with soap and water right before bedtime, I was dumbfounded to discover that it is actually comprised of several steps (which can be as many as ten!) and involves so many products. I could hardly tell where to start or how to go about my skincare regimen.

Celimax
Celimax
Celimax
Celimax

Fortunately, there are ways to pare down the complex skin care rituals to the most basic – yet essential – steps that still help to achieve to goal of minimizing pores and maintaining a youthful freshness despite the advancing years.

Honestly, I find a simplified routine a lot easier to do – and definitely a lot more sustainable to maintain in the long run.

This routine includes:

Step 1: Cleansing.

My busy days (and the hot and dusty city environment) tend to layer on dirt, oils and makeup residue on my face which may clog my pores, increasing the chances of unsightly breakouts. A skin cleanser should be able to remove the day’s accumulation of dirt while still maintaining my skin’s pH balance.

Step 2: Toning.

A thoroughly, but gently, cleansed skin should also be prepped to absorb moisturizers and other treatments you want to apply.

That’s the job of the skin toner. It also restores the skin’s pH balance and improves the overall skin tone.

Step 3: Treating

Despite a meticulous approach to skin care – or because of our past transgressions towards taking care of our skin during our youth – we may have some problem areas that we would like to address. These may include dull looking skin, fine lines and wrinkles, acne breakouts, among others.

Using serums, ampoules, acids or sheet masks with a higher concentration of ingredients to treat these problem areas will help in maintaining your skin’s health.

Step 4: Moisturizing.

Since we are not young as we used to be, moisturizing our skin is the order of the day – any day! How else can we keep our skin from drying out, keeping them nice, supple and young-looking.

To equip our skin care arsenal with the appropriate products to support our skin care goals, we can look to Korean skin care brand Celimax.

This line of beauty and skin care products is focused on transparency: it designs honest, user-friendly products with clean ingredients (allergen-free fragrance and no harsh chemicals) to bring about better skin for people with various skin types and skincare needs.

Among its products are the The Real Cica Calming Ampoule and The Real Cica Soothing Cream. As their names imply, both contain extracts from the cica (Centella Asiatica) plant, well-known for its healing, soothing, antibacterial and inflammatory properties, naturally derived within forty-eight hours of harvest to ensure maximum concentration of active compounds.

The Real Cica Calming Ampoule

This product contains 75% cica extract and an oil-free ultra-concentrated hydration complex to hydrate and soothe irritated skin.

To use, apply two to three drops from the automatic dropper and apply evenly across your face using your fingertips, avoiding the eye area. Use gentle pats to facilitate absorption of the formula.

Celimax
Celimax
Celimax
Celimax

Stock up on The Real Cica Calming Ampoule here.

The Real Cica Soothing Cream

This light-weighted hydrating gel cream is infused with 73% cica extract along with Dermatic AC3 (to manage sebum production and acne care for oily skin) and Niacinamide + Adenosine (to brighten skin and manage the effects of aging).

To apply, squeeze out a pea-sized amount of face cream then apply evenly throughout the face, gently massaging into the skin with small, upward circular motions.

Celimax
Celimax
Celimax
Celimax

Stock up on The Real Cica Soothing Cream here.

I love their light, refreshing and non-sticky feel on my face and the way they work together to quickly and effectively soothe away facial redness and swelling from irritation.

They are also easy and simple to apply, so including them as part of my nightly skin care routine would be no hassle at all.

Celimax
Celimax
Celimax
Celimax

Want to try these cica-based skincare products from Celimax?

While cica extract is usually safe for all skin types, it may aggravate or irritate the skin in certain cases. Also, results may vary from person to person. Be sure to scan the full ingredient list of these products before purchase and conducting a small patch test before the application to ensure your safety.

To know more about honest skincare products, follow Celimax on Facebook and Instagram.

Disclosure: Product samples were provided to facilitate this feature.

Easy and hassle-free online games with Plays.org

Now that the world is opening up again after being put on an extended pause due to the pandemic, we can expect our days to be a lot busier. Already, Zoom meetings take up quite a sizeable chunk of my workday, along with other tasks needed to churn out the outputs need to support my company’s goals. Soon, I might have to return to the harrowing commute from my home to the office and back again. Sigh!

At the same time, the kiddos will also be returning to some form of classroom learning, which means that they will depart from the relatively less-regulated learning environment to a more structured one in school. For the young ‘uns who have grown used to learning from home, going back to school (literally!) will be quite an adjustment.

The reshaping of our lives that this shift to the New Normal requires should not hinder us from taking care of the family’s mental health, though. Now, more than ever, we need to factor in activities in our day that give us a respite from our run-of-the-mill tasks as well as some enjoyable moments that add up to happy memories for ourselves and the family.

Fortunately, these kinds of activities are easy to find at Plays.org!

Plays.org
Plays.org

Who would have thought that, as a Gen X’er who grew up hearing a near-constant admonishment from my folks about playing computer games back in the day, I would be advocating for online games as a form of self-care?

However, we really shouldn’t discount the various benefits that online games bring to the table. Check out these Plays.org games that are big hits with my fam:

Welcome breaks from the daily drudge.

During my well-deserved coffee break, I like to indulge myself in a bit of low-stakes fun with Space Adventure: Pinball while my little ones can let off some steam after school with an exciting beat ‘em game like Adventure Time: Break the Worm.

Opportunities for fun family time.

We discovered the joys of casting our games from our laptop to our large-screen TV so that the family members can all take part in trying to best each other at the Tetris-inspired Tetra Blocks. On the other hand, educational games such as Garfield Sentences provide a fun way to supplement the kiddo’s school learning.

Brain relaxers before sleeping.

For minds that are too wound up to doze off, playing Neon Invaders, a throwback to Space Invaders, or a few rounds of Classic Solitaire would provide a sense of accomplishment that serves to round up the day and get us in the mood to sleep.

Plays.org is a website that houses thousands of free online games. These highly enjoyable pastimes can be accessed any time of the day using our desktop or mobile devices. Plays.org users are not required to register to be able to play, eliminating the need to keep track of yet another set of login credentials. Plus, since the games are web-based, downloading an app is also not required, thereby saving us some more of that precious storage space in our devices.

Another plus factor of Plays.org is that the site does not serve online ads so you won’t have to deal with irritating commercial interruptions nor the risk of exposing the little ones to advertising.

Plays.org
Plays.org

Ready to engage in some fun family playtime at Plays.org? Be sure to check out its newest games. You can also browse through its entire game catalog posted in the site’s footers.

Let me know how it goes!

Protecting children’s lives through vaccines

When the five-month-old son of Marissa Santos had recovered from measles, more commonly known as “tigdas,” Santos thought that that would be her son’s last encounter with the measles virus. Six years later, Santos’ son started to show symptoms of a rare and serious complication caused by measles—subacute sclerosing panencephalitis or SSPE. Santos says she hopes parents can take advantage of vaccination to help prevent measles and SSPE among their children.

Measles is a serious and highly contagious viral respiratory disease. The symptoms of measles include high-grade fever, rashes, and the three C’s—namely cough, conjunctivitis, and coryza. Measles can result in serious complications even among previously healthy children. The virus that causes measles can mutate and cause fatal complications.

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that in 2018, more than 140,000 people—most of them children under five years old—died of measles. This was despite the availability of a safe and effective vaccine against the disease. According to the WHO, before the measles vaccine became widely used, major measles epidemics happened around every two to three years. Measles led to an estimated 2.6 million deaths per year.

In the Philippines, the Department of Health (DOH) reported in 2020 that about 2.4 million children under the age of five are susceptible to measles. The DOH also reported from 2008 to 2017, that there had been a decline from above 80 percent to below 70 percent in the first dose of measles vaccine in the Philippines. The DOH had declared measles outbreaks in 2014 and 2019. As with the cases of some countries, outbreaks happened despite attempts at wider immunization coverage.

A complication of measles

Baby Come Vaxx online forum
 (L-F) Dr. Anleyn Reyes, Pediatric Infectious Disease Specialist; Dr. Marissa Lukban, Pediatric Neurologist; Ms. Marissa Santos, Mother & SSPE Advocate and Ms. Diane Medina, Celebrity Mom & Host during the “Baby Come Vax: Mga Bakunang Nalaktawan, Panahon nang Balikan” online forum.

Sharing her story in an online forum, Marissa Santos said that at five months old, her son, Jan, was hospitalized because of severe fever and convulsion following his measles infection. Because Jan was exposed to measles at an early age, Santos received advice from a pediatrician that Jan no longer needed to be vaccinated against measles.

Santos said that Jan had recovered from his episode of measles infection and spent the next five years living a normal life. But at six years old, Jan began having twitches and seizures. At times, Jan would suddenly drop things that he was holding in his hands. His head would suddenly drop or he would be in a daze. Both Jan’s mother and teacher noticed, too, a decline in Jan’s performance in school.

Worried, Marissa brought her son to an expert in pediatric neurology in the country, Dr. Marissa Lukban. In 2002, 7 year-old Jan was diagnosed with stage 2 subacute sclerosing panencephalitis or SSPE, a rare but progressive, disabling, and fatal brain disease.

According to Dr. Lukban, SSPE occurs in 0.5 to five cases per million population worldwide, although these figures depend on vaccination rates.

SSPE may occur when the measles virus mutates, Dr. Lukban said. Unrecognized by the body’s immune system, the virus enters the nerves, reaches the brain of a patient, and remains dormant until several years later when it reactivates.

Symptoms of SSPE include involuntary muscle movements, seizures, and behavioral changes including diminished performance in school. With less than five percent of cases having remission, SSPE patients often eventually become unable to swallow, speak, see, hear, and interact with others. The last stage of SSPE is characterized by coma or long coma.

“’Yung nightmare sa akin no’n, sinasabi ni Dr Lukban, was that there was no cure [The nightmare for me then was when Dr. Lukban said that there was no cure for SSPE],” Santos said.

Marissa and Jan had joined a support group in the hope of finding a cure for the disease. However, after ten years of enduring SSPE, Jan died in 2014 at 25 years old.

Measles vaccine as form of protection against SSPE

While a cure for SSPE has yet to be discovered, the best protection against this disease remains to be vaccination against measles.

Based on the Philippine General Hospital’s experience and citing Dr. Aida Salonga’s (2002) work, Dr. Lukban reported that from 1999 to 2001, there were roughly 18 to 20 Filipino children admitted in PGH with SSPE each year. But increased vaccination efforts since 1998 led to significantly lower measles cases. In 2002 to 2006, Dr. Lukban noted that the number of admitted cases decreased to 10-15 new cases per year and more recently down to 1-2 cases per year.

“Vaccination is a protection against getting measles at ‘pag hindi ka nagka-tigdas, hindi na magkaka-SSPE. Kumpletuhin lang po ang MMR vaccine at dapat po may booster [Vaccination is a protection against getting measles and if you haven’t had measles, you will not have SSPE. Complete the MMR vaccine and there should be a booster],” said Dr. Lukban.

Dr. Lukban also warned that high vaccine coverage needs to be sustained to prevent future measles outbreaks and SSPE cases. In the Philippines, there have been reports of measles outbreaks in 2014 and 2019. There is a likelihood that SSPE cases may increase in the following years.

Nagkaroon tayo ng campaign in 2004 pero bigla nating napansin na umaakyat na naman at nagkaroon ng ilang outbreaks, which only shows na talagang dapat kapag may programa, dire-diretso [We have had a campaign in 2004 but we also noticed that the cases increased and there were outbreaks, which only shows that if there is a program to vaccinate against measles, the program should be consistent and steady,” said Dr. Lukban.

The importance of continuing vaccination amid Covid-19

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, parents have been fearful of bringing their children outside their homes and have opted to postpone their children’s vaccination. Manpower and resources in public health have also been focused on the COVID-19 vaccination.

Dr. Anelyn Reyes, an infectious disease specialist, estimated that one in two children is not being vaccinated. According to DOH, the national vaccination rate in 2021 was at

48.5 percent. Dr. Reyes also cited a study that indicates three to four Filipino families are hesitant to have their children vaccinated due to misinformation on social media and lack of knowledge about vaccine safety.
The online forum entitled Baby Come Vax: Mga Bakunang Nalaktawan, Panahon nang Balikan is an activity under the Vax My Baby campaign–a vaccine mobilization campaign aimed at improving routine immunization amid the COVID-19 pandemic under the partnership of the Philippine Foundation for Vaccination, Metro Manila Development Authority, and GlaxoSmithKline Philippines, Inc.

Header photo by Meruyert Gonullu on Pexels

High Vaccine Coverage, Vaccine Suitability, crucial to combating Pneumonia in PH, says Vaccine Expert

A VACCINE EXPERT reinforced high vaccine coverage and the suitability of a pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) as crucial strategies to reducing overall pneumococcal disease burden in the Philippines.

Pneumonia is the leading cause of death of children below five years old in the Philippines. Globally, around 672,000 children die from pneumonia every year. This is equivalent to a child dying every 47 seconds.

Dr. Olakunle Oladehin, a vaccine expert and current Regional Vaccines Medical Lead for GSK, stressed the importance of high vaccine coverage to ensure success of a vaccination program especially in the current context of the pandemic.

[PHOTO 1] Dr-Oladehin-Lecture

“Even if we have the best vaccines, we will not be able to see its full impact if vaccination coverage is low. It is critical that every country strives to revive its vaccination uptake against diseases like pneumonia,” said Dr. Oladehin in a scientific lecture with local healthcare experts last July 7.

According to the Department of Health (DOH), childhood immunization fell to 48.5% in 2021 due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the necessary focus on COVID-19 vaccination as a response. The DOH has continuously ramped up its routine immunization activities including implementing the Chikiting Bakunation Days from April to June.

“I commend the determination of the Philippine government to bring back its immunization rates coming from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Dr Oladehin.

Meanwhile, Dr. Oladehin also reiterated the importance of ensuring that a given PCV should protect against relevant strains of Streptococcus pneumoniae in the Philippines, a type of bacteria that causes pneumonia and other invasive diseases.

“To achieve overall protection, the choice of PCV should address the most prevalent strains in the local landscape,” said the vaccine expert.

In 2020, the Health Technology Assessment Council (HTAC) of DOH reviewed the use of PCVs in the country, coming from a position statement issued by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2019. The mandate of HTAC is to undertake technology appraisals by determining their clinical and economic values in the Philippine healthcare system.

In its report, HTAC recommended the use of PCVs protecting against 11 important strains which accounted for 48% of Invasive Pneumococcal Disease (IPD) cases found in the Philippines namely 1, 4, 5, 6B, 7F, 9V, 14, 18C, 19A, 19F and 23F. The recommendation was based on local surveillance data from the Research Institute of Tropical Medicine (RITM) from 2012-2019.

Majority of these strains are highly invasive, and it is imperative that a given PCV should have evidence of being able to protect against them, Dr Oladehin said.

“Invasive pneumococcal strains like 18C and 4 can destroy living tissues or spread to many organs of the body through the blood, increasing likelihood of death,” Dr Oladehin zeroed in during his presentation.

Currently, there are three PCVs pre-qualified by the WHO—PCV13 and 2 kinds of PCV10: PHID-CV and SIIL- PCV. The two PCVs that were reviewed by HTAC—PHID-CV and PCV13—are suitable to address the 11 strains in the country.

Backed by real-world evidence and experience of being used in National Immunization Programs (NIP) across the world, both PHID-CV and PCV13 are included in the Philippine National Formulary (PNF) and can be procured for use under the Philippine’s own NIP.

Details and photo of Dr. Oladehin provided in a recent press release.

Header photo by CDC on Unsplash

Working your way to a better posture is easy with Curble Chair

Back pain does have a way of preventing you from getting up and about, as well as derailing your activities for the day, right?

While back pain my be caused by sports injuries, accidents, hormonal imbalances, or congenital conditions, oftentimes, back pains are the result of our day-to-day actions. Repetitive activities such as sitting all day in front of the computer, slouching as you drive your car and hunching over as you use your mobile phone may produce tightness and tension in your back muscles which result to backaches.

One way to prevent this kind of back pain is to improve your posture, making sure that the bones of your spine are correctly aligned and the spinal curves are balanced as you perform your daily tasks.

Curble Chair
Curble Chair
Curble Chair
Curble Chair

Maintaining a good posture requires less effort from your body than maintaining a bad one but, especially for those working with computers, you might still need some help correcting what years of getting used to the wrong posture has done.

Fortunately, there’s Curble Chair.

Did you know that sitting puts more pressure on our spine than any other action, and having a bad posture further exacerbates this effect?

While ergonomic and posture-correcting furniture have been around for quite some time, they do tend to be pricey, way beyond the means of typical office workers and stufents.

Curble Chair
Curble Chair
Curble Chair
Curble Chair

Not so with Curble Chair. This nifty posture-correcting support helps you maintain correct posture while sitting through the leverage effect of its backrest naturally pushing against your back as your weight pushes its bottom surface downward. Its design helps create a hip rise and distributes the pressure on the waist, thereby preventing strain on the rest of the body. Its air hallway system and fabric pattern also helps to disperse body heat so that you can stay cool as you use it.

Check out various Curble Chair models and see which one suits you best.

Curble Chair
Curble Comfy. Has a flexible backrest and helps lift the tailbone as you sit. Suitable for correcting posture when sitting for long periods.
Curble Chair
Curble Wider. Has a more rigid backrest that supports the waist, and wider chair body and bottom surface that hugs user’s sides and lifts pelvis.
Curble Chair
Curble Grand. Increased support capacity and increased thickness of separated upper and lower cushions for improved dispersion of body pressure and stability while sitting.
Curble Chair
Curble Kids. Posture correcting chair developed for children 12 years old and younger. Recommended for kids who have difficulty concentrating or show growth delay.

Curble Chair is recommended for the following:

  • those with little flexibility due to lack of exercise
  • office workers and students who spend most of their day sitting at a desk with few breaks
  • those who play computer games for long periods of time while in an incorrect posture
  • those who enjoy reading or meditating while sitting
  • patients who need to correct their posture because they are experiencing signs of herniated cervical or lumbar disc
  • those who want to maintain their corrected posture after receiving spinal manipulation
Curble Chair
Curble Chair
Curble Chair
Curble Chair

You will find many uses for your Curble Chair as it’s quite handy and portable so it helps you correct your sitting posture when you are:

  • at your desk, studying, working in front of your computer or doing arts and crafts
  • in the living room, whether you’re on the couch watching TV or on the floor while meditating
  • in your car while driving or riding as a passenger
  • outdoors while camping, watching sports events or on picnics
Curble Chair
Curble Chair

Grab your Curble Chair at its kiosk at 2nd Floor, Main Building, SM North EDSA, North Avenue corner EDSA, Quezon City or order online at The Laptop Lifestyle (use my code JELLYB to get 5% off upon checkout).

Disclosure: A product sample was provided to facilitate this feature.

Sangobion for Optimum Blood Health

Mommy, how are you feeling these days?

If your days continue to be super busy, you might be running yourself ragged. And that’s a no-no.

Being the person who takes care of other people in the household, you also have to take care of yourself. And taking care of your health is key to being able to fulfill what you set out to do for the fam.

Sangobion
Sangobion

You especially shouldn’t discount the effects of pagod (fatigue), hilo (dizziness) and putla (paleness) as these could be signs of Iron Deficiency Anemia.

This is the condition wherein blood does not produce enough red blood cells to carry oxygen to other parts of your body because of a lack of the mineral iron.

Sangobion
Sangobion

This happens when your body is unable to produce enough hemoglobin, the substance in red blood cells that carry oxygen.

As a result, some exertions or physical activity can leave you feeling overly tired and out of breath.

Sangobion
Sangobion

Iron deficiency anemia is not something to be taken lightly, because, if left untreated, it can worsen and lead to more pressing health concerns such as:

  • Heart problems. Due to the lack of oxygen, your heart will need to pump more blood, making it beat more rapidly or irregularly. This could lead to an enlarged heart or heart failure.
  • Pregnancy complications. Among expecting moms, iron deficiency anemia has been linked to premature births and low birth weights.

So mommy, do take care of yourself.

Sangobion
Sangobion

You can prevent iron deficiency anemia through a balanced diet that includes iron-rich foods such as red meat, pork, poultry, seafood, beans, green and leafy vegetables, dried fruit such as raisins, peas and iron-fortified cereals, breads and pastas.

Multivitamins + Minerals such as Sangobion Iron+ also helps in maintaining optimum blood health. It contains Ferrous Gluconate which increases hemoglobin levels, folic acid and copper for red blood cell production, Vitamin B12 for normal red blood cell formation and energy metabolism and Vitamin C for better iron absorption.

Iron Deficiency Anemia is not a condition that you can self-diagnose or self-medicate for so if you suspect that you may have it, consult your doctor asap, mommies.

For more information on Sangobion Iron+, visit its website or follow it on Facebook or Youtube.

Disclosure: A product sample was provided to facilitate this feature.

Will debt consolidation ease your money worries?

Like it or not, the state of your finances can and will affect your physical and mental well-being.

If you are experiencing chronic financial anxiety – the near-constant state of worry, stress or emotional disturbance over the state of your financial affairs – you might also be prone to disorders and behaviors that can negatively affect your body and mind.

Sufferers of financial anxiety are also likely exhibiting sleep disorders, weight fluctuations and disruptions from normal eating habits, unexplained aches and pains, as well as physical health concerns such as headaches, heart and blood pressure problems, and stomach issues.

Financial anxiety can also affect mental health. Feeling burdened by money worries could lead to the waning of self-confidence or sense of competence, as well as exacerbating the feeling of isolation.

With such worrying effects arising from financial anxiety, it is clearly a condition that needs to be avoided or immediately addressed if one is a afflicted by it.

Debt Consolidation Pics from Pexels

A recent CNBC article cites the aside from job loss, the continually rising cost of living and the lack of knowledge regarding personal finance, financial anxiety is also commonly caused by money missteps.

One such misstep is getting into quite a lot of debt. Whether this situation came about due to abusing your credit card, falling back on your payments to previous financial obligations, or other actions or lack thereof to put yourself in a better financial state, knowing that you owe a big sum of money can feel quite stressful.

If you find yourself in this situation, experts advise not to beat yourself up about it. The best recourse is to clear your mind and make a sound plan of action.

A step that you can take is to consider debt consolidation. As discussed in this 2021 Forbes.com article, combining multiple debts into one with a single monthly payment and usually with a lower interest rate through a personal loan or a balance transfer credit card helps to streamline your finances and speed up paying off your obligations, thereby getting you closer to being debt-free.

Debt Consolidation Pics from Pexels

With that said, you would still need to think carefully on whether debt consolidation is the best option for you. The same article posits that debt consolidation may come with added costs – such as origination fees, balance transfer fees, closing costs and annual fees – and does not resolve underlying financial issues such as lousy spending habits which may lead you to getting into more debt.

Debt consolidation may be your best bet if your total debt amount is high enough to justify the additional fees and efforts involved in getting a new loan, if you are set on working to improve your finances through positive changes in your money habits and if your current cash flow is sufficient cover the new monthly payments. Having a credit score high enough to qualify for a lower interest rate will also go a long way towards making debt consolidation work for you.

Debt Consolidation Pics from Pexels

At the heart of this issue is the need to have a thorough understanding of yourself and your financial habits, your current financial standing and your future financial prospects to be able to gauge whether debt consolidation is the right course of action for you.

It also helps to read more about debt consolidation so you can take the first important steps towards your financial freedom and, hopefully, to a better physical and mental state.

Photo credits:

All natural sweetness from Pure Via Stevia

Sugar permeates practically all of our food stuff. Aside from being a sweetener, it also acts as a preservative, texture modifier, coloring or flavoring agent and as an aid in fermentation.

However, sugar does have its downsides, especially if its consumed excessively. Being so calorie-rich, it can lead to weight gain and accumulation of visceral fat, and can increase risk of heart disease, Type 2 Diabetes, certain forms of cancer and even depression. Its ill effects may even manifest in our outward appearance in the form of increased acne and accelerated skin aging.

Pure Via Stevia
Pure Via Stevia
Pure Via Stevia
Pure Via Stevia

Clearly, as we transition to our more mature years, we should wean ourselves away from sugar. Well that is easier said than done, considering how ubiquities it is, and, of course, how appealing sweet foods are to us.

Fortunately, we now have sugar substitutes that are all-natural, such as Pure Via Stevia.

Pure Via Stevia
Pure Via Stevia

Made from the leaves of the stevia plant, Pure Via Stevia contains no sugars, calories, cholesterol nor carbs and is 200 times sweeter than sugar. In fact, 1 small stick of Pure Via at zero calories is equivalent to two teaspoons or sugar which contains 32 calories.

You can use it to sweeten your coffee or your smoothies, so you can start your day on a sweet but healthier note.

You can also modify your favorite dessert recipes using Pure Via Stevia as a substitute for sugar, making your cakes, pastries and creams a lot better for you.

Pure Via Stevia
Pure Via Stevia
Pure Via Stevia
Pure Via Stevia

So stock up on this wonder ingredient by adding it to cart in time for Shopee’s 5.5 Brands Festival and take advantage of discounts up to 50% off at the Equal Official Store.

During this online sale from April 26 to May 7, you can score a wide assortment of brands at unbelievable deals with 50% off Brand Bundles, 10% off daily, and Free Shipping with ₱0 min. spend.

So get started on a healthier way of life that is just as sweet as you like it to be with Pure Via Stevia.

Disclosure: Product samples were provided to facilitate this feature.

Why we moms should keep Getein PH testing kits in our bags

There’s no doubt that when the IATF declared Metro Manila under Alert Level 1, we moms were among those who breathed a huge sigh of relief.

At long last, after more than two years of living under strict community quarantine regulations, our families can now get some semblance of how we used to live prior to the arrival of the pandemic to our shores.

We started venturing out of our homes and exploring our world again: dining out, watching movies, visiting parks and going on staycations.

Hotel H2O
Hotel H2O
Sa Aming Munting Paraiso
Jennifer’s Abode, Tagaytay

These adventures added some fun, variety and excitement to our lives, especially for our kiddos who had been stuck at home for over two years.

But make no mistake, momshies, COVID-19 is still here and we should remain just as vigilant now as we were before. In fact, now is not the time to let go of our “mommy spidey senses,” in other words, our “pagka-praning!”

Getein PH
Getein PH
Getein PH
Getein PH

Aside from following the now golden rules of wearing facemasks, maintaining physical distancing, keeping our homes and belongings clean and sanitized, as well as meticulously washing our hands, we should also be able to quickly detect if anyone in our immediate circle has been infected.

This will help us to immediately organize our home to quarantine and care for the infected person while keeping the other household members safe from the virus.

Fortunately, a proven effective yet easy-to-use COVID-19 testing kit was approved by the Food and Drug Administration early this year, giving us moms a readily accessible and convenient way to detect COVID-19 infection.

Getein PH
Getein PH

The Getein SARS-Cov-2 Antigen Self-Test Kit contains the following:

  • SARS-COV-2 Antigen Test Card
  • Sterile Swab
  • Extraction Tube with Sample Extraction Solution and Tip
  • Bio Hazard Sample Bag
  • User Manual

Using it is so easy! Just follow the steps in the manual and you’ll get your results in fifteen minutes. You can even get a certificate by uploading your results through Getein’s mobile using a QR code.

I’m sure that I can trust that this testing kit is reliable as it has RITM validated results at 96.43% sensitivity and 100% specificity

Now that more people are going out or returning to their schools or offices, we moms can’t afford to be complacent when it comes to guarding our families against COVID-19.

Getein PH
Getein PH
Getein PH
Getein PH

What we can afford to do, however, is to stock up on Getein SARS-Cov-2 Antigen Self-Test Kits for our weekly antigen testing at home. At only Php298 per kit and available at leading drugstores, this self-test kit is an essential item that should always be within easy reach, whether in our medicine cabinets or in our purses.

We can still be praning but we won’t be as helpless as before, thanks to our new partner in early COVID-19 detection: Getein SARS-Cov-2 Antigen Self-Test Kits.

Know more about Getein PH on Facebook and Instagram.

Disclosure: Sample products were provided to facilitate this feature.

Quick relief from cold symptoms with Nafarin-A

Hewwow, ebwybowwy! How are you feewing today?

Yes, an attack of the common cold can burden you with a lot of inconvenient symptoms, one of which is that irritating hyponasal voice. With everything you try to accomplish with your busy life, that voice can really get in your way.

For example, can you imagine how hard it would be to do any of these when we‘ve got that hyponasal voice:

  • Making a business presentation
  • Haggling over prices
  • Taking a kid to task for misbehavior

This nasal voice is normally caused by some blockage in your nose brought about by your colds.

Nafarin-A
Nafarin-A

Add this to the other annoying cold manifestations such as headaches, itchy and watery eyes, sneezing, runny nose and sore throat from post-nasal drip, and you’ve got a maelstrom of symptoms that can derail you for the day.

A clogged nose also hampers your sleep, robbing you of much-needed rest.

Nafarin-A
Nafarin-A

The best recourse is to avoid getting colds altogether by making sure that viruses that bring about cold symptoms are kept well away from you. Fortunately, this involves actions that have become part of your daily routine such as properly and regularly washing your hands, avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands and keeping away from people who are sick with colds.

If, after all your precautions, you still got a case of colds, your next move should be alleviating its symptoms.

Nafarin-A
Nafarin-A

Nafarin-A is an over-the-counter drug that contains the following:

  • Phenylpropanolamine HCl. A nasal decongestant that helps you breathe easier by clearing obstructed and congested air passages, decongesting your stuffy nose and clogged sinuses.
  • Chlorphenamine maleate. An anti-allergy substance that relieves allergy symptoms such as runny nose, sneezing, and itchy, watery eyes.
  • Paracetamol. An effective fever reducer and pain reliever.

A tablet every six hours should help you manage your cold symptoms so you could get back to what you need to accomplish for the day!

Nafarin-A
Nafarin-A

Nafarin-A can be taken be taken by adults and kids twelve years old and older.

Ask your doctor about Nafarin-A,

You can stock up on Nafarin-A by ordering online at Lazada or Shopee, or by shopping at leading drugstores nationwide.

The importance of urban green spaces

Feeling tired or stressed? Unable to concentrate or feel at ease? Overcome with exhaustion or anxiety?

If the travails of life in the metro is making you feel out of sorts, it may be time to go green… that is, go to green spaces.

Green Spaces
Green Spaces
Green Spaces
Green Spaces

What are urban green spaces?

Urban green spaces are areas reserved for parks, plant life and other kinds of natural environment.

These areas provide city dwellers with places for picnics, leisurely walks, and other forms of outdoor recreational activities. They also serve as areas where people can escape the heat, air and noise pollution, as well as enjoy some peace and quiet.

Green Spaces
Green Spaces
Green Spaces
Green Spaces

Green spaces also serve to beautify the urban setting, adding welcome touches of green and other colors of nature, thereby integrating the natural environment with the built environment.

Why are urban green spaces important?

The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends universal access to green spaces, specifically that there should be a green space measuring at least 0.5 hectares at a linear distance of no more than 300 meters from every home.

Green Spaces
Green Spaces
Green Spaces
Green Spaces

This is because multiple studies have shown that green spaces help reduce stress, encourage social cohesion and physical activity, as well promote mental and physical health.

Other studies also point to increasing urban green spaces helping to stave off premature death.

Green spaces have also been shown to improve cognitive ability and social behaviors among children, particularly in the areas of attention restoration, memory, competence, socialization, self-discipline and stress moderation.

Green Spaces
Green Spaces
Green Spaces
Green Spaces

Increasing green spaces in cities is also seen to improve urban biodiversity and sustainability. With more plant species included planned green spaces attract birds and other fauna which help control pest infestations.

They also reduce the effects of Urban Heat Islands (UHIs), defined as metropolitan areas which are significantly warmer than their surrounding rural areas due to the daily activities of urban populations concentrated in a small area.

Green spaces in Metro Manila

Sadly, over the past several decades, the metro’s urban planners haven’t prioritized the provision for green spaces.

In 2019, netizen BA Racoma culled data from the Philippine Statistics Authority and the National Mapping and Resource Information Authority to come up with a map indicating the few remaining green spaces in Metro Manila.

Green Spaces
Green Spaces
Green Spaces
Green Spaces

These include: La Mesa Ecopark, Balara Filters Park, Arboretum Forest, Rizal Park Nayong Pilipino and Muntinlupa Sunken Garden.

Other netizens also identified Las Piñas Parañaque Critical Habitat and Ecotourism Area and the Arroceros Park in Manila as green spaces endangered by proposed real estate developments.

What you can do

If you haven’t visited the metro’s green spaces, it’s high time that you do so. This way, you can experience their health benefits and appreciate their aesthetic value first-hand.

You may also opt to patronize establishments that incorporate green areas in their design in the form of gardens or mini-parks.

Green Spaces
Green Spaces
Green Spaces
Green Spaces

You may also write to your local government unit (LGU) officials about developing green spaces in your community. Also, in every local or national election, do check out the candidate’s stand on the environment and public health to see how developing urban green spaces may be included in their future policies and projects.

Urban green spaces have been shown to greatly contribute to public health and the city’s beautification. It would be a shame if these areas dwindle and disappear, leaving the metro’s residents bereft of their various benefits.

Plant pictures taken at Rockwell The Grove in Pasig City.

3 reasons to reach for Biogesic to save your holiday from headaches and pains

Is the holiday stress making your head throb? Or do the sudden changes in weather give you aches pains?

Don’t worry, mommies! Relief is won’t take long if you keep Biogesic handy.

Biogesic is a trusted brand of paracetamol for over 50 years. It is typically used to relieve mild to moderate pain such as headache, backache, menstrual cramps, muscular strain, minor arthritis pain, toothache, and reduce fevers caused by illnesses such as the common cold and flu.

If you haven’t stocked up on this over-the -counter remedy yet, here are three reasons why you should:

Biogesic

1) Biogesic can be consumed on an empty stomach.

If you sometimes suffer from a sensitive stomach, taking medication may be a mixed blessing because some medications cause stomach upsets. With Biogesic, there’s no need to wait until you’ve eaten to take your pill and give yourself some relief as it won’t irritate your stomach lining.

Biogesic

2) Biogesic may be taken by children 12 years old or older, as well as by pregnant and breastfeeding women and seniors.

The 500mg Biogesic tablet may be taken by adults and children 12 years old or older, as well as seniors every four to six hours. Younger children will need to take a lower dose; fortunately, there’s Biogesic for Kids oral drops which contain 100mg of paracetamol and can be taken every four hours.

Pregnant and breastfeeding moms can also rest assured that taking Biogesic to relieve their headaches and pains is safe for them and their babies.

Biogesic

3) It is widely available.

Getting your hands on Biogesic won’t give you any headaches either. You can grab a pack at leading drugstores such as Mercury Drug, Watsons, Southstar Drug, Rose Pharmacy, Big Grocer and Med Express. You can also order online at Shopee, Lazada, Zalora and BeautyMNL.

So mommies, to ensure that everyone in the family benefits from #AlagangBiogesic, be sure to keep it handy by stocking it in your medicine cabinet or including it in your first aid kits and go bags.

Biogesic

Biogesic Paracetamol 500mg (20 tablets). For adults and kids 12 years old or older.

Biogesic Paracetamol 100mg for Kids (60mL). For kids between 2 to 6 years old.

Disclosure: Product sample was provided to facilitate this feature.

How busy working moms can bid goodbye to dark skin spots

With all the responsibilities that we have on our plate – at home, at work and elsewhere – we working moms seldom commit resources to skincare. We may lack the funds to purchase the products we think are necessary or lack that pocket of free time to devote to what may seem like a tedious task. We may even think that doing so may be a bit self-indulgent.

Self-care leads to self-confidence.

Whatever the reason, by neglecting our skin, we are denying ourselves an important part of self-care. Beauty may only be skin-deep, but our skin is what we oftentimes present first to the world as we go about our daily tasks. It forms a significant part of what people base their first impressions of us on.

As a working mom, I meet and communicate with other people on a regular basis. While I know that my competence at my job is key to getting things done, having a lot confidence in how I present myself also plays a key role in my work life. Furthermore, even in the age of virtual meetings, appearing unkempt and not well put together can be seen as being unprofessional, which may hinder advancement in my career.

Outside of our work, we also need confidence to participate in social activities. Any lack of self-confidence arising from skin problems may get in the way of our enjoyment of the company of friends or of our participation in the pursuits we are passionate about.

The problem with Melasma

As Filipinas, one major skin care challenge is the appearance of dark spots on our skin, particularly on our face and neck. Called melasma, this condition is characterized by patches of skin discoloration in areas usually exposed to the sun.

Pynocare

Melasma may be caused by exposure to ultraviolet radiation (usually from sun exposure), or the presence of free radicals in our system caused by our lifestyle choices including exposure to pollution, not getting enough sleep, having an unbalanced diet with plenty of processed foods, smoking and dealing with stress. Hormonal changes and using harsh cosmetics may also contribute to this condition. These factors fire up the melanocytes – cells in our skin that produce melanin or the dark pigment that brings about dark skin color – resulting to dark patches in our face and neck.

The patches caused by melasma are darker than our actual skin color, making our appearance look uneven and not well cared for and making us feel self-conscious when we face other people. We Pinoys even have a name for it – pekas – which call to mind unsightly blemishes and an unpleasant appearance.

Given these factors and our reality as working moms, what actions can we take as treatment for melasma on face to regain our self-confidence and achieve what we set out to accomplish at work, at home and elsewhere?

Pynocare
Pynocare

Believe it or not, fellow mommies, the answer to this beauty question is not skin-deep.

#LetTheLightIn with PYNOCARE

Melasma is caused by factors that are already within our systems and must be addressed by more than just topical solutions.

Aside from dealing with whatever lifestyle choices have led to the condition, we also have to work on what’s inside our bodies.

Pynocare
Pynocare

PYNOCARE (Procyanidin + Ascorbic Acid + Betacarotene + d-Alpha-Tocopheryl Acetate) is the first and only oral medicine that is clinically proven to reduce Melasma or dark spots formation in just eight weeks.

Unlike topical creams, lotions and gels, it works from the inside out. It has MSCC (MELASMA SKIN CLEAR COMPLEXION) Complex Actisome which fights the damaging free radicals in our system which cause melasma and normalizes the production of melanin in our skin cells.

Aside from Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid), Vitamin A (D. Salina Extract) and Vitamin E (D-Alpha-Tocopheryl Acetate), MSCC also contains Procyanidin extracted from the bark of French Maritime Pine trees. This super anti-oxidant has been cited by studies throughout the world as very efficient in fighting free radicals.

Pynocare
Pynocare

Pynocare is also quickly absorbed into our body, thanks to its Actisome technology.

It is an over-the-counter drug that comes in a box of twenty soft-gel capsules priced at Php1,395. A capsule should be taken twice a day after a meal continuously for eight weeks, after which, effects should be apparent.

Some types of melasma may respond more quickly to treatment than others so PYNOCARE may be taken for longer periods. A capsule per day may even be taken regularly beyond the initial treatment period to prevent the recurrence of melasma, with the bonus effect of helping to delay natural skin aging.

Pynocare
Pynocare

This easy and stress-free routine can be easily worked into our busy schedule, right, mommies? With a more even and glowing skin tone waiting to emerge, the effort will surely be well worth it.

PYNOCARE is available at Mercury Drug, Watsons, Southstar Drug, Rose Drugstore, St. Joseph Pharmacy, and other leading drugstores nationwide.

To know more about PYNOCARE, visit its website – pynocare.ph – or follow it on Facebook or Instagram.

Disclosure: Product samples were provided to facilitate this feature article.

Happy and healthy holidays with Sanlo Salabat

Sometimes, the wisdom of old folk medicine are proven right.

Especially now when we worry about the state of our health on a regular basis, we gravitate towards remedies that have been tried and tested by generations before us.

sentot-setyasiswanto-2VePbF_YRK8-unsplash
julia-topp-Xz4M49O8QcE-unsplash

Aside from its use as an ingredient in many tasty Pinoy dishes, ginger (or luya in Filipino) has been known to have powerful medicinal qualities which include:

  • Anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects
  • Treatment against nausea, especially morning sickness
  • Supporting weight loss
  • Reduction of pain from osteoarthritis
  • Lowering of blood sugars and cholesterol levels as well as improvement risk factors of heart disease
  • Promotion of gut health and chronic indigestion
  • Reduction of menstrual pain
  • Lowering the risk of infections

Ginger may also serve as an alternative treatment for some forms of cancer, as well as help in improving brain function and protecting against Alzheimer’s disease.

To take advantage of ginger‘s myriad health benefits, our forbears regularly consume salabat, the traditional ginger-based Filipino tea.

Sanlo Salabat
Sanlo Salabat

While our ancestors had to brew their go-to medicinal beverage the old fashioned way – boiling, slicing, boiling and straining ginger in water for minutes – we can save some time and effort with a sachet of Sanlo Premium Instant Salabat.

This ginger brew is made from the finest native ginger grown and harvested organically on the slopes of the mystical Banahaw. Upon harvesting, each ginger is meticulously selected, washed and sundried resulting in a cup of salabat that’s refreshing and irresistible flavor, as well as filled with health benefits.

Sanlo Salabat
Sanlo Salabat

Sanlo Premium Instant Salabat is produced by Prominex Ventures, Inc., which sources organically grown ginger from a rural cooperative composed of women and farmers, thereby promoting economic growth in the countryside.

Its Halal-certified product variants include:

Sanlo Salabat

Sanlo Premium Instant Salabat Original (10 sachets per box, 7.5g per sachet). Ginger brew flavored with just enough sweetness to suit everyone’s taste.

Sanlo Salabat

Sanlo Premium Instant Salabat Turmeric (10 sachets per box, 7.5g per sachet). The same premium quality ginger brew flavored with turmeric for a unique taste.

Other variants include Honey, Oregano and Malunggay.

To brew your own cup of salabat, empty the contents of a sachet into a cup with 150ml (2/3 cup) of water, then gently stir until the mix is fully dissolved. Enjoy your salabat hot or iced.

Sanlo Salabat
Sanlo Salabat

Sanlo’s invigorating and flavorful brew is great as a morning pick-me-up.

When I get nauseous or experience period cramps, it also provides some relief, so I can gamely get on with my day.

During this season of feasting, a cup after a meal can also help with digestion.

Sanlo Salabat
Sanlo Salabat

With this amazing ginger brew in our pantry, health and comfort during this holiday season and beyond is never more than a few seconds away.

Stock up on Sanlo Premium Instant Salabat at Lazada and Shopee or at your nearest supermarket.

For more information, visit Sanlo Premium Instant Salabat’s website or follow it on Facebook or Instagram.

Disclosure: Product samples were provided to facilitate this feature.

Photo credit: Ginger photos by sentot setyasiswanto and  Julia Topp on Unsplash