TRAFFIC FINES – LET THE AMOUNT REMAIN – IT IS NOT THE AMOUNT – IT IS THE CULTURE

You know something, prevention is better than cure.  I will simply turn off my cell phone as I cannot guarantee once it is on that I will not use it, plain and simple.  I will start practicing as of today.  What say you?

No matter how angry motorists will get at the proposed fee up for debate.  The reality is, if the fines were half or less than half, or remain as they were; where ‘licky licky’ police abounds, corruptions is rife.  It is not the amount I opine, rather the ‘intent’, blatant dishonesty practiced by those charged to protect and serve.  The police must be policed as it is a known fact that many mantra now is, ‘every lickle mek a muckle’ as soon as they land on the pavements of our streets.  No use trying to pretty up ‘ugly’, it never works. The same applies to finding a polite way to say to a ‘tief’, ‘you is a tief’.  The operative word ‘tief’ has a negative connotation and the offense will automatically be taken by the ‘tief’.  They too lurk around in the police force. 

While you sit and discuss these proposals, I recommend you also come up with some devices (workable) so officers on the beat are monitored when carrying out their duties.


 

PROPOSED FINES FOR ROAD TRAFFIC ACT

(Jamaica Gleaner, Friday 24 April 2015)

Following extensive deliberations on the Road Traffic Act by a joint select committee of Parliament, lawmakers are expected to debate soon the new law that sets out increased fines, jumping in some instances by more than 1,000 per cent.

The following are some of the proposed fines in the new Road Traffic Act.

Offences in respect of which a fixed penalty may be paid to a collector of taxes

1) Driving motor vehicle with no valid certificate of fitness – $5,000

2) Driving motor vehicle without it being registered – $10,000

3) Driving motor vehicle without it being licensed in the prescribed manner – $10,000

4) Driving motor vehicle without evidence of insurance or failing to surrender evidence of insurance – $15,000

5) Driving motor vehicle (a) with licence decal obscured – $5,000

(b) with licence decal not affixed – $5,000

(c) licence plates obscured or not easily distinguished – $5,000

(d) licence plates not affixed as prescribed – $5,000

6) Driving motor vehicle contrary to terms of licence – $15,000

7) Driving motor vehicle without driver’s licence or learner’s permit in possession – $2,000

8) Failing to comply with the conditions of learner’s licence – $6,000

9) Failing to comply with the conditions of first year of driver’s licence – $6,000

10) Failing to notify authority of

change of place of residence – $2,000

11) Failing to obey red light or stop sign – $12,000

12) Failing to comply with any other traffic sign – $8,000

13) Turning into or crossing major road so as to obstruct traffic – $9,000

14) Exceeding the speed limit by

(a) 16 km/h to 32 km/h – $6,000

(b) 33 km/h to 49 km/h – $10,000

(c) 50 km/h or more – $15,000

15) Driving on to one road from another and causing traffic obstruction – $10,000

16) Driving motor vehicle in violation of the rules of the road by:

(a) failing to keep to the nearside of road when approaching or being overtaken – $5,000

(b) overtaking on the nearside of other traffic – $5,000

(c) failing to allow passage to other overtaking vehicles – $10,000

(d) overtaking in a manner causing obstruction to oncoming traffic – $10,000

(e) crossing or turning so as to obstruct traffic – $9,000

(f) driving on to a road from another in a manner causing obstruction – $9,000

(g) driving from onto a place not being a road in a manner causing obstruction to traffic – $9,000

(h) travelling backwards further than necessary – $9,000

(i) failing to place motor vehicle when not in motion at the near side of roadway – $3,000

(j) failing to place motor vehicle in position so as not to obstruct traffic – $3,000

(k) person pouring petrol, driver leaves vehicle unattended – $7,000

(1) parking a vehicle in a zone designated for parking and failing to observe the rules pertaining to parking or failing to pay charge – $2,000

(m) person wilfully or unnecessarily preventing hindering or interrupting free passage of vehicular or pedestrian traffic – $13,000

(n) placing on or abandoning object on road that may endanger or cause damage to vehicular or pedestrian traffic – $13,000

(o) using cell phone, while driving or while functioning as instructor – $13,000

17) Careless driving where no collision occurs – $11,000

18) Careless driving where collision occurs – $25,000

19) Disobeying directions or signal of constable in execution of his duty – $5,000

20) Driver of motorcycle not causing pillion rider to wear prescribed protective helmet – $5,000

21) Failing to observe silence zones – $7,000

22) Failing to observe school safety zone – $10,000

23) Exceeding speed limit within school safety zone – $10,000

24) Exceeding speed limit within construction work zone – $10,000

25) Failing to comply with a sign of school crossing patrol to stop – $5,000

26) Driver of motor vehicle failing to yield the right of way when pedestrian in pedestrian crossing – $7,000

27) Driver of motor vehicle passing vehicle stopped in pedestrian crossing – $10,000

28) Driver of motor vehicle putting vehicle in motion while signal to stop is still exhibited – $13,000

29) Person pouring petrol into or on vehicle while engine running or naked light is alight – $10,000

30) Person with intent to defraud, interfere with or operate parking meter – $15,000

31) Driver of motor vehicle leaves vehicle unattended without stopping the engine – $4,000

32) Failing to place motor vehicle when not in motion at the near side of roadway – $7,000

33) Failing to place motor vehicle in position so as not to obstruct traffic – $7,000

34) Failing to use appropriate hand signal – $2,000

35) Driver of motor vehicle failing to give appropriate signal to indicate direction when turning – $7,000

36) Driver of motor vehicle failing to obey commands of constable to stop or keep motor vehicle stationary – $6,000

37) Failing to obey police signals – $7,500

38) Unnecessarily hinder, interrupt or otherwise obstruct the free and proper passage of vehicle or pedestrian – $5,000

39) Placing or abandoning object on road that may endanger or cause damage to vehicular or pedestrian traffic – $5,000

40) Refusing to weigh or test vehicle – $50,000

41) Driver causing vehicle to obstruct road or parked while being loaded or unloaded – $7,000

42) Use of electronic communication device while driving – $10,000

43) Use of electronic video device within driver’s line of sight while driving – $13,000

45) Using or driving or permitting to be used motor vehicle in a defective condition – $15,000
 F

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Gymnast, Team Jamaica, First Ever – Olympics 2016

Come on over, we do excel in sports. Once you have dual nationality my sentiments towards Jamaica will always be the obvious choice.

We are highly recognised as a country that produces talent in the sports arena. Notwithstanding representation in other fields outside track and field we must fill. Timing is everything so welcome to ‘Team Jamaica’.

Do your part ensuring that you will be seen on that stage come 2016 in Brazil. It is going to be a historical event and you best be on ‘Team Jamaica.


 

British-born J’can gymnast gets nod to represent Jamaica

(Jamaica Observer ) Thursday, April 23, 2015 | 11:47 AM      

KINGSTON, Jamaica – A British-born Jamaican gymnast has been granted permission to represent Jamaica as he aims to become the first-ever gymnast to represent the island at an Olympic Games.

The gymnast, Reiss Beckford, was given the go-ahead as a result of his dual-nationality after applying to the International Gymnastics Federation earlier this year.

A three-time European and Commonwealth Games silver medalist for Team GB, 23-year-old Reiss has always dreamed of competing in the Olympic Games.

According to a release from Sports Sphere, he was first reserve for Team GB at the London 2012 Olympic Games and, on realising that he would be a likely reserve for Rio 2016, Reiss decided to pursue his Olympic dream through his Jamaican heritage.

Over the next year, Reiss must perform well in a number of competitions across the globe. His main focus will be the Gymnastics World Championships, which takes place in Glasgow in October. A good performance there will be key to ensuring Reiss progresses to Rio 2016, the release added.

“I am both excited and proud to have the opportunity to compete for Team Jamaica, and to become the country’s first Olympic gymnast. I’ll be working my hardest to achieve my dream of competing in the Olympic Games, as well as creating a bit of history and hopefully inspiring a generation of gymnasts in Jamaica,” the young gymnast said. 

 

 

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Another One Bites The Dust – The Nobel Profession

Barred from 2013, yet bold enough to continue the masquerade.  Why??? ‘whole heap a desperate people out deh wid a lickle piece a land or house an oono suh intoxicated wid greed, dat oono think tiefing is fi oono good deed’.  On top of it all, how many persons are willing to file that complaint against the ‘attorney’? 

It appears the tide is turning and the media is getting the information and reporting which is necessary.  If only to make persons aware that they must ensure that their ‘attorney’ is certified to practice law in the given period.  There is a bar association and the onus now is on ‘you’ to take the initiative to determine the credibility of those rendering legal service.  ‘Greed’ is a form of cancer in the stage 3 phase on this small Island of ours.  It is best to do your homework and do not let the jacket and tie, or tailored suits bedazzle you.


 

 

Lawyer charged by Fraud Squad

(Jamaica Observer Wednesday, April 22, 2015)  

  

KINGSTON, Jamaica – Akin Adaranaja, a 56-year-old attorney-at-law of Elletson Flats in Kingston 7, was arrested and charged for fraudulent conversion on Monday, April 20.

Reports from the Corporate Communications Unit are that a client allegedly entrusted Adaranaja with a deposit of J$1,000,000 for a parcel of land. The client reportedly later discovered that Adaranaja has been barred from practicing law in Jamaica by the General Legal Council since November 2013. After several failed attempts to get a refund, a report was made to the Fraud Squad. 

Adaranaja is scheduled to appear before the Corporate Area Resident Magistrate’s Court on Thursday, May 14, 2015.

 

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NHT (National Housing Trust) Gets New Board

We must come to understand fully that once you have reached a certain level professional, fall you must if you fail to deliver.  It cannot be that you muzzle, ‘fob’ your way out of non performance and retain your perks.  You are appointed based on your expertise, and paid accordingly.  Once you are unable to deliver prepare to ‘pack your bags and go’.  Neither personal nor political alliance should factor into the equation.  Trust is important in any organisation, but of paramount importance is ‘delivery’.  We the citizens refuse to accept any less from those in public office.  They are paid by the people and should deliver for the people.  If many of these non performers who hold public office were in the private sector, they would be ‘sitting ducks’ by now.

I commend the government for this move.  Whenever you are unable to replace non performers due to personal or political relationships, it is time to review the hiring process.  If you are not emotionally connected to those expected to deliver, then it is far easier to replace them. 


 

New National Housing Trust board announced

(Jamaica Gleaner) Published:Wednesday | April 22, 2015

 
National Housing Trust building in Kingston.
 
 

The Government has announced a new National Housing Trust (NHT) board to be chaired by former Cabinet Secretary, Dr Carlton Davis.

Minister with responsibility for Information, Senator Sandrea Falconer, disclosed the new membership during today’s Post Cabinet Press Briefing at Jamaica House.

The new board replaces the one chaired by Easton Douglas.

The life of that three-year-old board ended on April 2.

Actuary Daisy Coke, who was appointed on the last board hit by the Outameni controversy in 2014, will be the deputy chairperson.

Former head of the Jamaica Social Investment Fund, Scarlette Gillings, is among some new members.

She is joined by trade unionist, Granville Valentine, Lisa Harrison and Jacqueline Lynch Stewart, general manager of the Bob Marley Foundation.

The Cabinet has retained from the last board, Lambert Brown, Percival Latouche, Robert Budhan, Sergeant Raymond Wilson, Michael Harvey, Clayton Hall and Sonia Hyman.

Acting Managing Director of the NHT, Martin Miller, has been named as an ex-officio member.

Senator Falconer says three additional members are to be named.

The new board was named a day after the Auditor General’s Department released an audit report that raises questions about the leadership of the Trust and the bypassing of technical advice in making decisions that are failing to yield returns on investments. 

 

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Sharks Come In All Form (Part 11) – That’s Why We Have Faith & Hope

It is acts of generosity like these that make you reflect on ‘purpose’. It begs the question, is there something the average person or ‘every day people’ can do for others without ‘knowing’ them first? Do I wait on others to act before I do so, knowing I can contribute in some way? How cynical or sceptical am I? Are my emotions turned off or on to the plight of others?


 

‘Glitzzy’ help for Finsac’d man

 Glitzzy’ help for Finsac’d man (Jamaica Observer, April 22 2015)

A smiling Mecheck Willis (left) collects a cheque for $60,000 from Jermin Culley, owner of Glitzzy Hair store in Half-Way-Tree, St Andrew, on Monday — a day after the Sunday Observer highlighted Willis’ dire situation and his desire for some cash to get back on his feet. Also sharing the moment is Mitzie Harriot-Moodie, regional store manager at Glitzzy Hair.

Willis’ situation was highlighted in a story under the headline ‘Zinc shack is man’s home after Finsac takeover’. He was featured hobbling on crutches, and living in a one-room zinc and board shack as his life spiralled out of control — a deterioration that began when his four-bedroom, two-bathroom house was taken from him and his family and sold during the Finsac takeover in 2005.
“When I read the story I was moved and decided that I had to do something to help,” Culley said.
“I am hoping that, with this donation, Mr Willis will be able to lift himself up from his current situation,” Culley added, noting that his ultimate aim is to see the senior citizen reunited with his family.
The young businessman issued a call for other local businesses to do more to help people around them who are in need. “We can’t save the world, but we can help a few people,” told the Observer.
The 64-year-old Willis, meanwhile, was grateful for the donation.
“This donation will really help me a far way, I am more than grateful,” he said as he took the cheque, adding that he will continue to pray for more blessings for Culley.
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50 Cents – What Say You With My Island???????

The 5th richest hip hop rapper in 2014, worth an estimated US$140 million it is said was on the Island last weekend on a ‘working visit’, latest buzz word.  I say welcome and encourage you Sir to invest in Jamaica.  While we look to the continents namely the Chinese, Asians, Europeans, never lose sight of this fact.  There are extremely wealthy ‘independent’ people from the music and entertainment business world-wide who have the ‘cash’ to invest and should be equally wooed. 

My country is open to EVERYBODY!!!!!!!  We need investments which will create jobs.  Increasing taxes under these austerity measures will never get us to where we want which is fast and exponential growth.


 

 

50 Cent mulls Jamaica investment

BY BALFORD HENRY Observer senior reporter balfordh@jamaicaobserver.com

Wednesday, April 22, 2015    

 

50 cent

AMERICAN rapper and actor 50 Cent was in Jamaica on a “working visit” last weekend.

According to sources close to the rapper, 50 Cent (whose given name is Curtis Jackson III) was exploring investment opportunities in the island. They, however, declined to give any details.

“He did meet with some local officials and had discussions on investment opportunities in the Montego Bay resort area,” said the source, who spoke to the Jamaica Observer on the condition of anonymity.

50 Cent is said to have close Jamaican family connections, through his stepfather with whom he grew up in Queens, New York.

The rapper has a big following in Jamaica. He performed at Heineken Heatwave Concert at Constant Spring Golf Club in St Andrew, in 2003.

In 2003, the 39-year-old got his break when he released Get Rich or Die Tryin’ in a joint venture with Shady Records (Eminem), Aftermath Entertainment (Dr Dre) and Interscope Records. It debuted at number one on the Billboard 200, selling 872,000 copies in its first four days. Billboard named it the 12th Best Album of the Decade.

He appeared in the semi-auto-biographical film Get Rich or Die Tryin’ (2005), as well as Iraq war film Home of the Brave (2006) and Righteous Kill (2008).

He has also been involved in several private commercial investments, in areas such as enhanced water drinks (Formula 50), platinum mining in South Africa, American stock and real estate markets and boxing promotion.

He was rated the fifth richest figure in American hip hop in 2014, with an estimated net value of US$140 million.

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Attorneys – Does The Prestige Still Exists?

‘Ally Barber, Attorney-At-Law………..Colly Dane, Gynecologist, MD’……………Wowwwwwwww, reallyyyyyyyy.  Ooh that’s great.  There was such a time when those who introduced themselves by their medical or legal acumen would immediately gain respect irrespective of ‘name recognition’.   Long gone are those days.  In fact, the term ‘ambulance chasers’ when I first heard of it some 14 years ago, was making reference to those lawyers and doctors who ‘hustle’.  There is legitimate hustle and there is ‘disgraceful’ hustle, let us just leave it at that.

It is a sad day when an Island of our size is riddled with corrupted certified elements masquerading around as ‘smaddie’ due to their ‘toppa toppa’ profession.  This is what we call the ‘educated thief’, who glide through society, elbow brushing, gaining open access to financial institutions, any and every where they go simply because of their esteemed profession.  Well, times are slowly changing and from the reports we have seen where three (3) high profile lawyers have been charged, with this being the fourth (4) one, let this be a lesson that you are entitled to a fee for services rendered not the whole ‘hog’.

I say this to persons seeking legal representation; do not let the gift of the gab fool you.  If you feel you are being disrespected, ignored or slighted by your Attorney, then demand the return of your paper work and go elsewhere.  Go with your gut feeling.  You do not have to be an intellectual to have the ability to smell a ‘rat’ once it is in your presence.  It is time we stop putting ‘mere man’ on an unnecessary pedestal simply because of their certification.  I am a firm believer that if matters are dealt with properly, then the court house should be the last place to end up.  Once it gets to that stage, for me, it says a lot about the professionals in question.  Many do not just want to ‘eat a food’; rather they wish to obtain ‘Buckingham Palace’ lifestyle.  While nothing is wrong with such grandeur, if it is from theft off the backs of others, then it surely must be dealt with as you do criminals.


 

 

Another attorney arrested and charged with fraud

(Jamaica Gleaner – Published:Tuesday | April 21, 2015)
 
 Another attorney has been arrested and charged with fraud.

The police say 47-year-old Jade Hollis of Caribbean Close, Kingston 10 was today arrested and charged with four counts of fraudulent

conversion.

The police say Hollis was taken into custody at the Norman Manley International Airport upon her return to the island shortly after midday today.

It is reported that she fraudulently collected more than $12 million while she was being retained as a carriage of sales of a real estate company.

Hollis is to appear before the Half-Way Tree Resident Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday, May 13.

She is now on bail in the sum of $3 million with surety.

 

 

 

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Am I A Maroon??

What I find interesting is the decisiveness of thought in which the Colonel sets about in fulfilling his manifesto in his second term. Firstly he will reintroduce flogging as part of punishment for certain crimes committed. I’m sure there are those who will oppose but his words of precision will undoubtedly be followed through by action. If only to ensure his community does not become a cesspool for criminals to wreak havoc on its citizens. The Colonel recognises that the punishment must have teeth in order to become a deterrent.

What we seem to have in our society is a justice system which appears to protect the criminals and put increasing pressure on the victims. When we hear the call repeatedly that trials are not able to resume due to jury shortage, one has to ask, are laws made in stone? Shouldn’t our laws and punishment reflect our culture somewhat? Why can’t we have murder, rape and child molestation trials just to name a few be heard by a panel of judges who will determine guilt or innocence?

The bigger question is, while we watch and bemoan the vicious heinous acts suffered by our people, is our government or opposition going to continue to sing the same sankey?

Capital punishment, public flogging and a non jury system should be imposed if we are determined to reduce acts of violence.


 

Colonel vows to revive flogging for criminal acts

Accompong will be no safe haven for wrong doers, says Maroon colonel

BY GARFIELD MYERS Editor-at-Large South/Central Bureau myersg@jamaicaobserver.com

Monday, April 20, 2015

 Ferron Williams was re-elected for a second five-year term as colonel of the Accompong Maroons.

SANTA CRUZ, St Elizabeth — The Jamaican Parliament abolished flogging as a means of judicial punishment in 2013.

However, Ferron Williams, who was returned as colonel of the Accompong Maroons in an election last Thursday, told journalists he intends to have the practise revived for criminal and anti-social behaviour, subject to the dictates of the Maroon Council.

In such matters, Williams told the Jamaica Observer Central in a follow-up telephone interview on Saturday, Accompong should not be considered subject to Jamaican law since it was “a State within a State” with its own customs, traditions and culture.

Indeed, according to Williams, under the terms of the Peace Treaty agreed between the Maroons and British colonisers in 1738, murder was the only crime which should require the intervention of the Jamaican authorities.

“In such cases we should hand them (alleged murderers) over,” said Williams, who recently retired as a member of the Jamaica Constabulary.

Maroons are the descendants of African slaves left behind by Spanish colonisers when the British captured Jamaica in the 1650s, as well as runaway slaves from British sugar plantations. Maroon communities in the Blue Mountains of eastern Jamaica and in the Cockpit Country, including Accompong in the island’s west, resisted British occupation for decades prior to the 1730s peace treaty.

Williams’s assertion of the intention to resume flogging came in the context of recent incidents, including the destruction by fire of his home in Accompong.

He said he was determined to ensure that “Accompong will not be any safe haven for wrong doers”.

Williams told journalists that “on the day before nomination my home was burnt, it was torched…” He claimed his life had also being threatened in the build-up to the election.

He said he was prepared to ask the Jamaican authorities for assistance in ensuring stability in the community.

He told the Observer Central on Saturday that he believed the alleged act of arson which destroyed the five-bedroom house was motivated by internal politics in Accompong.

Williams said he had fallen short in terms of a promise to have flogging resumed during his last five-year term as colonel, but this time around he intended to honour the promise.

“My first manifesto did not accomplish two things: a transportation system for schoolchildren and second to bring back flogging in Accompong,” the maroon chief said.

“Irrespective of anything one wants to say, punishment not meant to be easy and those that break the law should be punished, and the only form of punishment we have in Accompong is the cat-o-nine and the tamarind switch and that was placed on my manifesto and I will honour that promise,” he told journalists.

“I will see and cause wrong doers in Accompong to be punished in such a manner,” Williams added.

He insisted, however, that crimes plaguing the rest of the Jamaican society, such as armed robberies and break-ins, were virtually non-existent in Accompong.

Thursday’s election, which followed a stormy campaign, saw Williams polling 218 votes, according to the preliminary count, ahead of Elizabeth Campbell, 182; Norma Rowe Edwards, 135; Meredie Rowe, 131; and Viviene Cornish, 18.

Accompong took on a festive atmosphere, with some Maroons singing and dancing during the count at the cultural centre.

Maroon elder Melville Currie supervised the elections with the assistance of a team from the Electoral Office of Jamaica led by Deputy Director of Elections Earl Simpson.

Voting took place in Accompong as well as in Kingston, Montego Bay and in a number of communities embraced by the Cockpit Country in north-east and north-west St Elizabeth.

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IS SOY SAFE? by Dr Tony Vendryes

To my mind, soy is a super food. I have been using and recommending this bean to my patients for decades, long before it became as popular as it is today.

 Scientific research has shown that eating soy protects against heart disease, cancer and osteoporosis while easing the symptoms of menopause. Nutritional experts still continue to find more health benefits from soy consumption. It is also an economical and complete source of protein that can safely replace animal protein in the diet. Yet, with increasing frequency, I have been questioned by people who are concerned about any potential dangers from soy.

Like every good thing, soy has been blamed for all kinds of ills, but, to my mind, most of these accusations are based on anecdotal reports or shoddy and or biased research. The bulk of the medical evidence strongly confirms the valuable role of soy in preventing disease and supporting health. Let’s look at the most common concerns.

 Soy and Cancer

 Much of the worry about soy is focused on naturally occurring compounds called phytoestrogens, the most abundant being the isoflavone, genistein. As the name suggests, phytoestrogens have chemical structures similar to that of the hormone oestrogen. This enables them to fit into the body’s oestrogen receptor sites, much as a key fits into a lock. Far from causing breast cancer, this ability to bind to oestrogen receptors allows phytoestrogens to block the effects of the much stronger oestrogens that are either produced by the body or come from toxic chemicals like insecticides. This is one mechanism by which soy is thought to protect women against breast cancer. The weak phytoestrogens in soy actually have a oestrogen-modulating and oestrogen blocking effect.

 The majority of research — as well as the experience of Asian populations where soy has been a dietary staple for thousands of years — confirms the protective role of soy. A report published in the May 2001 issue of Cancer, Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention provides compelling evidence of the anti-cancer effects of soy foods. This study found that, with an increase in soy intake during adolescence, there was a reduction in the risk of breast cancer.

 Women with the highest consumption of soy had only half the risk of those with the lowest intake. Other studies have also shown a reduced risk of cancers of the breast, prostate and colon with increasing soy consumption.

 Soy and the Thyroid

 Another charge against soy is that it contains ‘anti-thyroid agents’ that can disturb the function of the thyroid gland. This is largely theoretical. Certain compounds in soy can affect thyroid tissue in test-tube studies, but this does not appear to be the case in live human beings. Population studies show no increased prevalence of thyroid disease in countries with a high intake of soy, and the clinical research has been inconclusive.

 That debate aside, most researchers agree that consuming soy at the level needed to get its health benefits (about 25 to 40 grams per day) is most unlikely to impair thyroid function. After using soy with hundreds of patients, I have detected no disturbance of thyroid function that I could blame on soy. However, if you have hypothyroidism, a bit of caution may be in order. Try to keep your soy intake fairly constant and have your thyroid function monitored periodically. Make sure that you have enough iodine in your diet Also be aware that taking thyroid medication at the same time as eating soy foods, or any food, may decrease the drug’s absorption. Take it on an empty stomach.

 Recommendations

 Have some soy in your daily diet. Soy is now available in many forms – soymilk, soy cheese, soy nuts, soups, drinks, protein bars, tofu and tempeh.

 There are also textured vegetable protein products such as veggie mince, chunks and soy burgers. The American Medical Association recommends 25 gm soy protein each day for heart health. To get this, I have a high-quality soy protein shake each day. This is a delicious, nutritious drink that can conveniently replace a meal.

 All soy products are not equal. Select high-quality soy foods as many so-called soy products have low levels of the substances that provide the health benefits of soy. Look for the term ‘soy-protein isolate’ and check the protein content on labels as a guide in assessing soy products. The soy products I use are of the highest quality and specially grown, and processed to ensure optimal benefits.

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EAT LESS AND LIVE LONGER BY Dr Tony Vendryes

Most people eat and drink too much without even knowing it. This custom of overconsumption can make you sick or even kill you. Medical research shows that it results in a greatly increased risk of developing common disorders like diabetes, hypertension, lipid (cholesterol and triglycerides) disorders, heart disease and strokes.

 The energy that we get from the food we eat is measured in units called calories. Different foods have different caloric values. While proteins and carbohydrates supply four calories per gram, fats provide over twice that amount, nine calories per gram. So your caloric consumption depends not only on how much food, but also on the type of food that you eat. Please note that although alcohol is not a food it provides a hefty seven calories per gram.

 CALORIE RESTRICTION (CR)

 Research has consistently demonstrated that restricting the amount of calories an animal eats while ensuring it gets all the nourishment it needs, a process called calorie restriction (CR), the animal lives a longer and healthier life.

 CR not only extends the lifespan of laboratory animals but also reduces the incidence of virtually all diseases of ageing such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes, osteoporosis, autoimmune disorders, neurological decline and conditions like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. In some cases, the lifespan of animals in the laboratory has been doubled. This is the only strategy that has been proven to extend the average and maximum lifespan of animals.

The big question is: can CR be applied to humans? There is compelling evidence that keeping your body weight low (one result of CR) can make you live longer. In 1997, a study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition stated: “We conclude that the optimal weights for longevity are below the average in both men and women.” In other words, a healthy person with low body weight lives longer that a healthy person with a high body weight.

The ideal calorie restriction diet aims to reduce your intake of calories 20 to 40 per cent lower than is typical, while still obtaining all the necessary nutrients and vitamins. The average person is challenged to make such a drastic change in their diet: hunger, a lack of discipline and the prevailing social norms are major obstacles.

 STARTING CALORIE RESTRICTION

 Change your mindset: Most people have been programmed to think that more is always better. But when it comes to food and optimal health, less is often better. Begin to make small adjustments to the quantity and quality of your food. Lower your body weight.

 Use shakes: Modern food science has created meal replacement drinks called shakes that can provide all the nutrients you would get in a large balanced meal while greatly restricting your calorie intake. There are lots of shakes on the market today and some people create their own, but not all are equal. Choose carefully. You need a shake that is full of nutrients yet low in calories. For over 18 years, I have replaced one or more of my meals each day with a low-calorie shake from Herbalife International. It provides lots of all the key nutrients with less than 200 calories. Such a shake is an ideal way to embark on CR. It is economical, delicious, convenient and a great weight management tool.

 Focus on water-rich, high-fibre foods: Since water contains no calories, and fibre is the non-digestible part of plant foods, foods high in water and fibre will tend to be lower in caloric content. They also add volume and bulk to food thus creating a greater feeling of fullness and satiety. Fresh fruits and vegetables should therefore be a big part of your meal plan. Remember, however, that very sweet fruits like mangoes and ripe bananas provide lots of sugar and calories and can sabotage your CR programme.

Cut back on fats and alcohol: As indicated earlier, fats and alcohol have a very high caloric content and their consumption should be restricted. Healthy fats like the omega 3 fatty acids are, however, essential.

 Ease up on sugar and starch: Although these carbohydrates have less calories per gram, we easily consume too much of them as they create cravings for more and encourage overeating. Deliberately restrict these foods.

 Have enough protein: Proteins are low in calories and they provide the materials for the body to repair and renew itself. Do not skimp on healthy protein foods. One important feature of the shake I referred to is that it is an excellent source of healthy protein.

 Drink the right fluids: The most ideal fluids to drink in addition the shakes are pure water and green tea. On top of having many health benefits, both these liquids are void of calories and help significantly to curb hunger and restrict food consumption.

 

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