Category Archives: Consumer Info

Consumer Info: Bird Flu, from Causes to Prevention

UPDATE (As of 2017 August 18): Bird Flu has spread from San Luis, Pampanga to Jaen and San Isidro, Nueva Ecija.

The deadly Bird Flu has become one of the most dangerous diseases in the world; yet did you know that this H5N1 strain has already killed 60% of the people who have been infected with the disease since it first appeared in 1997?

This viral infection which first appeared in HK in fact spreads from bird to bird and does not easily spread from person to person rather it does so from infected birds to humans. And as of 2011, bird flu which has been established in China, India, Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia and Vietnam would be difficult to eradicate mainly because it has spread from birds to pigs and even donkeys.

CAUSES 

Humans could catch Bird Flu through:

  1. Close contact with infected birds or bird droppings.
  2. Cleaning or plucking infected birds.
  3. Inhalation of aerosolized materials in live bird markets.
  4. Swimming or bathing in water contaminated with droppings of infected birds.
  5. Handling of fighting cocks.
  6. Infected birds’ saliva, discharges like faeces and urine, as well as feed and secretions from the nose, mouth or eyes especially from hens, geese, turkeys and ducks.
  7. Exceptionally close contact with infected people.

NOTE: Eating meat and eggs from infected birds is not dangerous provided that it’s well-cooked as the heat kills most of its harmful agents. 

RISKS

  • Highest possibility of infection comes from poultry farm workers, animal control workers, wildlife biologists, and ornithologists who handle birds.

SYMPTOMS

  • Cough, diarrhea, respiratory difficulties, fever (over 100.4 °F), headache, muscle pain or weakness, malaise, runny nose, sore throat, colds, headache, swollen neck, dehydration, nausea, abdominal pain, vomiting, eye infection, lung congestion, pneumonia, could infect the brain and digestive track.

TREATMENT 

  • Antiviral drugs like Oseltamivir (Tamiflu), Zanamivir (Relenza) or Peramivir (Rapivab) can help reduce severity of the disease as it prevents the virus from growing. These should be given soon after diagnosis have been verified.

NOTE: If bird flu is not immediately treated, this could lead to complications like pneumonia, respiratory or kidney failure, and some cardiovascular problems.

BASIC HOME REMEDIES 

  1. Drink Green Tea. It helps inhibit the release of an enzyme known as neuraminidase in bird flu and so it controls the growth and reproduction of it. Take 6-7 cups daily.
  2. Strengthen your Immune System. Take vitamin C or even add lemon juice to your green tea. Citrus fruits and juices are good in boosting immunity. Eat fresh veggies and salads, too.
  3. Do Steam Inhalation. This is to ease mucous accumulation and liquidate secretions for it to easily come out of your nose. Steam inhalation plus a few drops of tea tree oil could serve as an expectorant.
  4. Stay Hydrated. Especially for those who are vomiting or has diarrhea, drink at least 10 glasses of water a day — include servings of warm soups as well.
  5. Consume Garlic. With its powerful antibacterial and antiviral properties, this is one of the best home remedies for bird flu. Eat at least 2 cloves of raw garlic 2 times a day.

PREVENTION 

Aside from having a healthy diet with lots of liquid on your part, we would say “regularly monitoring and understanding your fowls’ condition” is the best preventive measure against the spread of this disease. In short, just stop this Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) right from the roots.

Consumer Info: 5 Steps to Reverse Cavities and Heal Tooth Decay

Are you suffering from toothaches? Then you must have some tooth decay. Yet do not despair, ‘cause you do not necessarily have to get your tooth drilled and have it saved by some synthetic fillings. In fact, your cavities could actually be reversed naturally.

Seriously.

Okay, we can not really return the enamel that was gobbled up during the decay, after all, a tooth is not a living tissue. So, guess that should have been brought up in this video. However, addressing the causes of tooth decay is certainly a good way to stopping further deterioration on its tracks and strengthening ‘em anew.

Obviously, brushing alone is not enough — and more than flossing, change has to actually come from our diet.

Yes, we already know sweets could ruin our teeth. Thus, watch your donuts, ice cream and soda consumption. Meanwhile, we also know that vitamin C helps strengthen our teeth and bones, so try to eat more fruits and veggies. But for many, what’s new here somehow is the ‘oil pulling’ — which is like gargling with coconut or sesame oil. Well, that’s something worth trying.

Still, another reminder that should have been brought up was with regards to the brushing of our teeth. Mind you, this should be done within 30 minutes after eating a meal. Doing so would help prevent bacteria from camping inside your mouth, or teeth and gums for that matter which is really the start of tooth decay. Also, take note that rice consumption is not just about some ‘diabetes watch’ but about ‘tooth decay watch’ as well. Hey, rice is composed of starch, so?

Take care of your teeth! And make a smile your signature accessory.

Top Fruits in the Philippines during Summer

While most all kinds of fruits are available anywhere in the globe, these are likely imported — for there is this thing called ‘seasonal’ availability in fruits. And here in PI, while bananas, papayas and coconuts are available all year round, it’s good to take advantage of seasonal fruits during the summer..

Of course it’s cheaper, at least in many areas, and we need them to fight off colds while quenching our thirst! So, here.

Watermelon or ‘pakwan’ in the vernacular

WATERMELON. What is more thirst-quenching than the succulent ‘pakwan’! And during summer, it’s been neck-and-neck in popularity versus the mango as you don’t even need to make a juice out of it!

Mango, probably the sweetest is in Guimaras

MANGO. The national fruit. Summer or not, ripe or not — it’s just always sought after in the country! Young or old.

Melon is the Filipino term for this type of cantaloupe

CANTALOUPE. While you could eat ‘melon’ upon slicing  them, it is especially delicious when juiced. Yeah, ice-cold and with some milk!

Pineapple, got a plantation over at South Cotabato

PINEAPPLE. Either in juice or not, at the beach or at home — the pineapple has proven to be a favorite among Filipinos!

Bananas are just everywhere and all year round

BANANA. Probably one of the cheapest fruit anywhere — and as a bonus, it’s healthy and  satiates your hunger even if it ain’t summer!

Chico, sometimes you’re like eating sand but it tastes good and sweet

Meanwhile, other popular summer fruits include avocado, star apple (kaimito), jackfruit (langka), Spanish plum (sineguelas), cottonfruit (santol), Java plum (duhat), and the ‘chico’.

Top 10 Beach Activities in the Philippines

Know what, there are actually many things we could do in beaches — yeah, not just swimming, eating and chitchatting. We could do yoga, read a book, fly a kite and more! Unfortunately, many of us just leaves such activities at home. Hmm…

And so, what do we normally see in Philippine beaches?

Singing (Music): The universal language

VIDEOKE. In almost any beach you go to, and even from afar, you could already hear this thunderous sound — Singing!!

Selfie: The way of life

SELFIE OR PHOTOGRAPHING VIEWS. What is having fun without having memories of it? Besides, picture-taking has simply become part of our lifestyle already!

Playing Cards: The national past time??

PLAYING CARDS OR MAHJONG. Especially for those who does not want to swim yet, playing cards or mahjong is one past time many just could not live without. Really.

Drinking: The amnesiatic solution??

DRINKING. Though you could see people ‘drinking’ even without playing cards, in most cases, these two activities go hand-in-hand.

Sand Games: The path to re-energizing

SAND CASTLES OR BURYING A FRIEND. Even for many adults, playing with sand is a sure thing especially when it’s white sand where one could also bury a friend.

Beach Volleyball: Bonding and exercise in one

BALL GAMES. Beach volleyball and soccer, these are the most popular ball games one could see on beaches. And oh, incidentally, athleticism is reduced dramatically when on sand making almost everybody equal — thus, more fun and excitement!

Playing Frisbee: Fun and personal training in one

FRISBEE OR PLAYING CATCH. For those who doesn’t have a Frisbee, one could see beach goers playing catch instead that is by using a beach ball — however, only few moves on to play dodgeball since it requires more energy and athleticism to play it.

Relaxing or Taking a Nap: Just ‘enjoying’ the moment

TAKING A NAP. Yeah, we could see more than a handful actually taking a nap or relaxing on beaches — what with the time they spent in preparing food or even just talking onto the wee hours of the night in excitement of going to the beach!

Playing Tag: A simple way of making friends

PLAYING TAG. Either on sand or at sea, there are still those who plays tag or even race — then again, the numbers has fallen since this requires energy; and these days, energy has become a commodity that they’d rather swim leisurely than try to tag someone else.

Boating: Enjoying while exploring the sea

BOATING. While many would want to go boating, only a few would actually go for it. Ey, you have to spend to do so! Good if their group is just about 6-8 people, that with some extra cash, they would most likely rent and take the paddle. Thus, if the majority could not ride then the minority would not force it. So, jetskiing, parasailing, and alike — obviously, they’re not for the majority.

Banana Boat Ride: Adding excitement to a wonderful summer

As for playing musical instruments, most would rather sing at the videoke bar. Board games? Most would rather play cards. Dance the limbo or learning new sports? Most would rather roam around for ‘selfies’. Watching movies on a portable CD player? Most would rather, well, sleep; of course, watching movies among others is sedentary as well but the point is — many have become idle!?

Collect seashells or play tug-of-war? My, it’s almost a forgotten art!

Top 10 Beach Foods in the Philippines

Going to beaches would be incomplete without food — of course! But did you ever notice what kinda food do Filipinos usually bring to their outings? Or at least wished they could have brought if not for this or that.

Here now are the Top Foods you’d often see in Philippine beaches.

Lechon

LECHON. Though many would want to bring a whole roasted pig to the beach, obviously not everyone could afford to; so, one would either bring a couple of kilos or go on to the next ‘baon’..

Fried chicken

FRIED CHICKEN. While a whole lechon may truly be impractical to many unless they got some sort of celebration other than just a simple summer get-together, the fried chicken is almost a certainty in every Filipino picnic basket.

Grilled food

GRILLED FOOD. Whether it’s pork, chicken, beef, fish or squid, Filipinos love cooking in such a ‘picnicky’ ambiance; thus, you can count on this food group to be part of your lunch!

Hotdogs

HOTDOGS. Oh, this one could either come in fried or grilled, and with marshmallows or not; and because it’s the cheapest (yet tasty) among the ‘meat’ group, not to mention that kids just love ‘em — hotdogs are certainly more than just an alternative.

Fresh fruits or salad

FRUITS. At the very least, you could either see a bunch of bananas, mangoes or watermelons in your cottage — otherwise, someone must have brought ‘buko’ (coconut) salad for your dessert.

Fun snacks

SNACK. Roaming the beach or simply chitchatting with family or friends would be more enjoyable while munching on something, right? In this case, chips or raw mangoes with ‘bagoong’ (anchovies) are the top choices — young or old.

Rechargers

RECHARGER. One can’t always eat rice and what have you the whole time they’re in the beach, but we do get hungry more often than not — especially when we swim. Solution? Steamed sweet potatoes, bananas or even ‘kakanin’ (made of glutinous rice).

Beverages

BEVERAGES. Either softdrinks, soda, juice, ‘gulaman’ (gelatin), water or beer (surety for adults) — we need to drink, of course. And this is just a matter of what most presumably would like to have.

Lumpiang shanghai and Empanada

MEAT CRISPIES. For those who want food other than something grilled or fried chicken — lumpiang shanghai (spring rolls) or empanada (stuffed bread or pastry) are popular among beach goers. And these are generally stuffed with ground pork.

Menudo and Pancit

EXTENDERS. More than just wanting another kind of food, if a family miscommunicates and happen to buy more than a handful of hotdogs or meat, it is usually turned into another dish like ‘menudo’ — and that would give some kind of soup or sauce for the rice.

Otherwise, some type of ‘pancit’ would be tin-foiled in a ‘bila-o’ (circular basket) and so normally consumed as a delicious light to medium snack in beaches. T’is too light to be a ‘recharger’ tho, yet a little heavy for ‘chitchatting’, so it’s just made for variety.

In the end, one doesn’t have to bring a sack of everything on the list but just an ample amount of ‘em major groups — or its alternative. What’s matters is you have enough for everyone and you had fun!

Summertime: Your Camping Essentials

What is summer without camping, uh? Yep, especially when beaches are full?! Yet of course, camping is by all means not a second choice for fun and adventure — as the wilderness is always a refreshing way to energize and bond!

But just like any other activity, preparation is needed. Especially in camping when you would spend at least a night outdoors. And altho you could bring just about anything, it’s certainly practical to travel and go light. The less, the better.

Here now are your Basic Camping Essentials. Just Click the Images.

WATERPROOF TENT (5-6 persons)

Ideally, you should put a 1-2 person allowance in your tent check list — for extra valuable space. This means, if there are 4 of you who’s planning to go camping, try to bring a 5-6 person waterproof tent.

SLEEPING MAT

You wouldn’t want to feel itchy while you sleep, that is if you could even sleep with the grass tickling you. So if you couldn’t afford an inflatable pad yet, just make sure you get a mat that is waterproof.

SLEEPING BAG

Even during summer, you know it’s cold when you’re outdoors — thus, having a sleeping bag could keep you warm and safe.

SOLAR LAMP

We guarantee you, it’s gonna be dark at night and you would not want to get lost in the woods. Therefore, a solar lamp is a must.

CAMPING KNIFE

One can’t imagine the importance of having a knife (even a multi tool) on hand — from preparing food to fixing your tent to opening bottles to what have you.

PORTABLE CAMPING BURNER

While you could cook with firewood and really feel that you are camping, it wouldn’t hurt if you bring a little portable stove.

WINDPROOF & WATERPROOF MATCH

If you got a lighter or even a match, you could bring ’em; then again, could it handle even a slight breeze without being extinguished?

CAMPING COOKWARE

Hey, we can’t always eat canned goods, you know. And burners are not only for heating up coffee water — so, try to take along a couple of pots and pans including a bowl or so.

HOT COLD TUMBLER

Now speaking of hot and cold beverages for your mornings and throughout the day, a nice vacuum flask would do.

WATER PURIFICATION FILTER

Would you rather bring several containers of water, or invest in a water filtration system? Having the latter is more than welcome.

WINDPROOF JACKET

Camping doesn’t mean you’d always hole up in your tent, thus having a windproof jacket to roam around would surely do you good.

FIRST AID KIT

Finally, when outdoors, it’s always good to be ‘first aid’ ready.

At the end of the day, camping is really like living outdoors, so others might even bring coolers, portable tables and chairs — but for us, we travel light. The less, the better.  However you travel, just do not forget to bring extra clothing, slippers, hygienic set (toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, etc), and extra food unless you would fish.

Summertime: Your Snorkeling Essentials

Ready to dip?? Wait. Got to prepare yourself first for the adventure to have more fun and protection in the experience. And t’is ’bout investing in equipments.

Okay, you could borrow; then again, more than the possibility of not having that ‘perfect fit’ — you could also risk damaging ’em, and t’is somethin’ that’s not yours?! So, here now are  snorkeling essentials that you would or could be needing. Just Click the Images.

FULL WETSUIT
HALF WETSUIT
SPORTS SWIMWEAR

Okay we need a swimwear, and if our chosen attire is other than the full wetsuit then we would especially need a sunscreen.

SNORKEL MASK: Good for beginners to advanced swimmers
DIVING MASK: Ideal for competent swimmers

For the mask, it is important to note the kinds of masks there is since it would be your aid to seeing and breathing underwater.

FLOATING VEST

And remember, more than just fun, keep safe with a vest.

GOPRO HERO4
ETCAM C5

Then of course, what is fun without memories — don’t forget your underwater camera! GoPro or more affordable ones will do.

SNORKELING BAG

Now if you don’t have a snorkeling belt to tag along your camera (and your kitchen sink hehe) underwater then bring a bag.

FLIPPERS
SNORKEL SHOES

For your footwear, you could either have flippers to speed up your swimming, or just shoes to protect your feet. Your choice.

WATERPROOF WRISTWATCH

Finally, it’s paramount to know time — even during ’em fun times and especially underwater — lest before you know it, it’s already dark.

DIVING FLASHLIGHT

Well, worry not though if you got a diving flashlight with you.

Oh so much to explore, so little time! Till next time!