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Health benefits of cucumber (2)

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Cucumber is a creeping vine that roots in the ground and grows up trailing or other supporting frames, wrapping around supports with thin, spiraling tendrils. The plant has large leaves that form a canopy over the fruit.

Hangover cure: Are you prone to hangovers and headaches after a few drinks? Eat a few cucumber slices before going to bed. It’s refreshing and will stop you waking up with a headache. The sugar, vitamin B and electrolytes in the cucumber will replace any vital nutrients the body may have lost. In addition, it will keep your system balanced and prevent hangovers.

Stress buster: Need to relax and unwind? Cut up a whole cucumber and put it in a pot of boiling water. The nutrients and chemicals from the cucumber will react with the boiling water, and release the beneficial properties through the steam. This will induce calm, relaxing aroma in the atmosphere. This has worked to cut stress in new mothers and students taking exams.

Cure for Dark circles under eyes: Cucumber helps to lighten dark circles under the eyes. Cut two slices of cucumber. Lay down and place one slice on each eye for five to 10 minutes. Close your eyes as the juice from the cucumber may irritate them. It works! It’s also beneficial for soothing tired eyes; especially for those of us who stare at a computer screen for long periods.

Stop Bathroom Mirror from Clouding: Rub a slice of cucumber along the inner edges of the mirror. This will stop the steam from fogging up the mirror. Clean and Shine Your Sink and Stainless Steel Areas?
Rub a slice of cucumber over the surface that you want to clean. It will remove tarnish and restore the shine. Rub a thick slice of cucumber over your glass top table and wiped off the juice with a kitchen towel. The result will amaze you- a beautiful, shiny glass table. Try it for yourself.

Freshen your breath: To get rid of bad breath, press a slice of cucumber to the roof of your mouth. Use your tongue to hold it in place for about 30 seconds. The phytochemicals from the cucumber will destroy the bacteria which causes bad breath.

Remedy for Sunburn: To soothe your sunburn skin, try this. Cut some thin slices of cucumber and put them on the sunburn area. Remove them when the cucumber starts to feel warm on your skin. They’re beneficial for delicate areas, such as the face and neck.

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Killer Spouses: Let’s halt the madness

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The alarming rate of spousal murder in our world calls for collective attention and action. The gruesome phenomenon is fast assuming frenetic dimension in our family life. One begins to wonder how and why lovers who voluntarily came together as husband and wife suddenly engage in extreme hostility with each other. Attending wedding ceremonies these days often agitate my mind as scary tales of abuse and violence that emanate from some of the new homes shortly after the fanfare are on the increase.

I have written articles to address some knotty marital issues that do result in the untimely and painful death of the spouses. Initially, only women were usually the victims of domestic violence. Somewhat, the hunter has now become the hunted as wives now do hack their husbands to death in the course of fighting or as reprisals. Our media is daily being inundated with sour news of one form of spousal death or the other.

Since the June 24, 2011 case of Akolade Arowolo who stabbed his banker wife, Titilayo, to death, over a score of such dastardly spousal murder cases had been reported in the media.

This is aside the unknown or covered-up cases especially in the remote places. An autopsy report revealed Titilayo was stabbed 76 times. However, the culprit did not escape the full weight of the law. He was sentenced to death February 21, 2014.

The new lethal fad these days seems to be spousal killings perpetrated by the wives. The Nigerian Police recently confirmed the arrest of Maryam Sanda for stabbing her husband Bilyaminu Haliru Bello to death. Reports claimed she killed her husband by stabbing him multiple times after seeing text messages in his phone which suggested that he was engaged in an extra-marital affair. Also, there’s the recent case of a lawyer, Mrs. Udeme Odibi, who, after stabbing her husband to death in his sleep, cut his genitals and placed them in his right hand while his stomach ripped open with the intestines spilling out.

These are just a tip of the soaring cases of spousal murder dotting our marital landscape these days. I keep wondering what usually go wrong in loving, sweet, and honey-like affairs that now end in tragedies.

Does it mean that sweet words and ecstatic moments of romance are superficial? Despite costly wedding ceremonies, how come this sad end? I hereby offer a four-prong suggestions as a way to stem this mournful scourge:

i. The parental roles must be reactivated right from the platonic (nonsexual) friendship level as parents must care to know who their children are moving with. In the ages past, parents often determine which families their children would marry from. Customarily, they will investigate the would-be in-laws’ lineage to know if there’s any illness, mental case, premature death, poverty, bareness, marital failure, spiritual issue or social stigma that was common in the family.

More often than not, children rarely reject the choices of their parents because they knew parental decisions were in their best interest. Virtually all the marriages midwifed by parental arrangements in that era endured.

Despite challenges, the marriages survived the odds because the parents were the ‘sureties’ and arbiters at every point of need or crisis. Respect for parents, desired to be responsible couples, fear of stigma in case of divorce, protection of children and family names or reputation were pivotal to the success of marriages at that time.

Regrettably though, Titilayo’s father, Mr. Oyakhire, confessed that the Arowolos’ marriage had been characterised by violence and abuse but he never envisaged it will end in the death of his daughter. Keeping people together in hostile relationships or marriages will ultimately end in regret. Parents must get involved henceforth!

ii. The Church or religious leaders must find a solution to these murderous tendencies in the society. I want to suggest that fathers of faith should replicate what the Apostles did in Jerusalem (Acts 15) when they met to resolve the doctrinal issues bothering on circumcision.

As Holy Spiritfilled oracles of God, decisions should be reached as to how long warring or violent partners should stay together to avoid untimely deaths. Pretending not to allow separation in the name of being sanctimonious is an act of cowardice.

Couples that die during assaults or physical combats might not make heaven because they die in bitterness and wrong frame of mind. iii. The society should stop stigmatizing separated or single parents.

This wrong perception do ‘force’ couples to remain in abusive or acrimonious relationships. Neighbours and people around disputing couples should please wade in quickly to avoid stories that touch the heart.

For instance, before lawyer Odibi stabbed her husband to death, her neighbours confirmed that Mr. Odibi had earlier alerted his friends and his mother that his wife threatened to kill him which eventually happened. Police should have been invited immediately Odibi raised the alarm. Perhaps the story would have been different today.

Please let’s be our brothers and sisters’ keepers. iv. Disputing couples should seek help from relationship counsellors. Family and friends should encourage them to do so in order to salvage the families in crises.

 

Send your responses/private issues to: mikeawe@yahoo.co.uk or 08035304268 (SMS/WhatsApp)

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Uprising in APC, who is surprised?

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“Blind party loyalty will be our downfall. We must follow the truth wherever it leads.” – DaShanne Stokes

What the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has been displaying to the country in the last three weeks ahead of its long overdue National Convention merely gives credence to the assertion of a British statesman Benjamin Disraeli that “There is no act of treachery or meanness of which a political party is not capable; for in politics there is no honour.”

But in the case of APC only persons handicapped in political punditry will express shock and surprise at the ongoing “war” in the ruling party. The squabble has yet again popularized the word parallel. The same way “inconclusive” was popularized by the Independent National Commission (INEC), under this regime.

When clouds gather the weather man tells us, the next thing is for the rain to pour and they dispatch advisories alerting us to travel dry. APC cloud have been gathering for the past three years and it’s just about to pour. All efforts by experienced hands in their system to proffer what to do to avoid the rain, fell on deaf ears as the system got hijacked by some cabals whose understanding and scope of national politics is pigeon holed in their narrow ethno-religious view point. Suddenly here we are the chicken is home to roost and the party is now right inside the rain already. In fact, it has been drizzling all the while ahead of 2019.

The inability of the ruling party to hold serious National Executive Council (NEC) meeting for over two years derives from this reality that the foundation of the house wrongly laid was cracking.

The early declaration of second term intention by President Muhammadu Buhari was intended to avert it, but from all indications it has failed to achieve the desired result. Aware that it must pour some “rain makers” wearing the garb of 20 APC state governors were brought in to prevent its pouring by proposing tenure elongation for National Chairman John Odigie-Oyegun and his team a way of shifting the evils day, but the other higher forces led by President Buhari and former Lagos State Governor Ahmed Tinubu routing for former Edo State Governor Adams Oshiohmole for the national chairmanship refused, saying they won’t mind it pouring. Buhari and Tinubu had their way and a congress was ordered and here and now the party is soaked in their own blooper.

It is pouring in torrents, the grounds are all wet, fear of slipping off the ground now grips everybody, the movement is now gingerly to avoid the great fall. The arrogance is now giving way to reason, the rebellious new PDP in their fold hitherto written off before as inconsequential is now getting a hearing, reality is now downing. Will APC survive this their new disease called “parallel congress” will it be able to reduce its 72 state chairmen emerging from its parallel congresses into 36 states as required by the constitution of the party?

How would it be able to contain the anger of some of its henchmen being inconvenienced by these developments?

We have seen from APC congresses that even the rich are also crying and that master riggers can also be rigged out.

In Imo State, Governor Rochas Okorocha who was at the forefront of the anti-tenure elongation group because he wanted the state executive not loyal to him removed so that he can replace them found himself not at the commanding position where he yells orders but at the lamentation table crying for whoever desires to listen. What it takes for the best village dancer to lose his crown in the village square is just for somebody to study his dancing steps and add one or two more calisthenics and you are an edge ahead.

 

Governor Okorocha the Generalissimo of Imo politics suddenly is running helter-skelter in search of platform. His inordinate desire to enthrone his son in-law as his successor and the daughter as the successor to the wife in the First Lady position appears seriously threatened. The Owelle who had crowned himself the face of APC in Igboland is now a crying baby.

In the neighbouring Rivers State, Rotimi Amaechi’s unhidden agenda to inflame the state all in desperation to stop Governor Nyesom Wike appears hooked in internal squabbles as he is dagger drawn with his own strongest ally Senator Magnus Abe. The gun movie in Port Harcourt a forth night ago by Amaechi’s supporters to shot down law court remains yet another sour point of this administration in its relationship with the judiciary.

Not even the almighty Jagaban himself, the Asuwaju of APC is having easy ride as the party’s National Legal Adviser Muiz Banire insisted on creating parallel structure in Lagos.

The fragile romance between Senate President Bukola Saraki and the Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed, established in 2015 to enable the minister scale through Senate screening has crumbled and they have all returned to their trenches as shown in the parallel congress from Kwara State.

Speaker Yakubu Dogara who has had poor relationship with his state Governor Mohammad Abubakar was hit below the belt as not even his ward was he able to influence despite the yeoman job he is reported to be doing in his constituency.

In Enugu the hitherto apolitical Foreign Affairs Minister, Geoffrey Onyeama, literally suspended his diplomatic gentleness and went about with thugs in yet another parallel congress.

Nothing less was expected from Kaduna State because of the high level of animosity already between the diminutive state governor, Nasir el rufai, and the irrepressible senators from the state led by the “deodorant and insecticide” Senator Shehu Sani.

The crisis rocking the ruling APC as validated by the ward, local government and state congresses, and most likely to be seen at its National Convention is pervasive and reflects the status of the party at the moment.

Since June 9, 2015 when it could not agree as a party on who should head the legislative arm controlled by it, APC has been jumping from one problem to the other.

Even right inside the Presidency, the much-expected cohesion and harmony have not been seen.

When early in the administration the President was accused of filling the whole position around him with his ethnic and religious allies refusing to recognize the nationality of his positions, he reacted angrily by saying he was appointing those he knows and who can do the work for him. But despite that this Presidency has been the most divided since 1999.

Few samples will suffice here; we have all witnessed the infighting among two security bodies, the EFCC and DSS all reporting to the President. Nigerians saw how the President submitted for confirmation twice Ibrahim Magu and twice DSS wrote a report that he was not eligible for the job. We all saw the show of shame when the operatives of the two agencies came on the streets of Abuja before camera with weapons flexing muscles.

Therefore, if we are not expecting biologically that a goat gives birth to a sheep why are Nigerians surprised that a party that produced such elementary performance in governance amidst apparent confusion would turn overnight to have a smooth and transparent political congresses?

It’s perhaps against this backdrop that the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and other political watchers are crying from the roof top, to the international community and all lovers of democracy that this administration is incapable of conducting a free, fair and credible general election.

The party is relying on some empirical points already on display lately to even warn that democracy is seriously under threat and the prevailing circumstances are not providing an enticing signs.

What has come very glaring from the APC impasse is that the great conspiracy of 2014 to grab power at all cost that gave birth to APC has crumbled? It was intended to metamorphose into a political party to change our society for the better, but all the manifestations have been showing otherwise. No wonder great players in the conspiracy like former President Olusegun Obasanjo are chickening out and the pack appears to be fragmenting. God help Nigeria.

 

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Which oil is best for you?

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What is your favourite oil: coconut oil, groundnut oil, sunflower oil, flaxseed oil, olive oil? Regarding its health benefits, none of these oils can compare with Palm oil. Surprised? You are probably astonished because palm oil is everywhere and is cheaper than other oils. Remember that biblical saying: ‘A prophet is always respected except in his own country.’ Palm oil is a native of West Africa.

It is a prophet of good health, fertility, radiant skin, stamina and high energy levels. The only problem is that it is too common and even too cheap. As a result, we prefer the more expensive, processed, foreign and unhealthy oils.

In recent years, oil palm growth has expanded to Southeast Asia, including Malaysia and Indonesia. These two countries currently produce more than 80 per cent of the world’s palm oil supply. Perhaps we will appreciate red oil palm better when they begin to import it at very high prices. Nigerians love foreign and expensive things!

In many African homes of old, palm oil was the number one medicinal cure for many ailments: headaches, joint pains, stomach pains, cough, asthma, and many others. Studies show that it has been used for 5,000 years. It is called ‘red oil’ or ‘red palm oil’ because of its red colour. The colour is due to the high levels of two powerful antioxidants: – Lycopene and – Beta-carotenes, the same antioxidants found in carrots. However, Red palm oil contains more lycopene and Beta-carotenes than the carrots and tomatoes.

The oil is derived from the fruit of the oil palm tree, of which the real name is ‘Elaeis guineensis’. Palm oil is one of the least expensive and most popular oils worldwide, accounting for one-third of global plant oil production.

Red palm oil not only is high in Vitamin E, but it also contains a very special type: tocotrienol. This antioxidant is believed play a protective role in cellular ageing, atherosclerosis (heart disease), cancer, arthritis, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Vitamin A is essential and can help to protect bones, improve the immune system and keep mental function strong. There is no doubt that when it comes to oils, the red palm is the most nutrient rich. Aside from Vitamin E and A, a few others include, Vitamin K, CoQ10, Squalene (Compound linked to decreasing cholesterol), Phytosterols and flavonoids.

The health benefits of palm oil include its ability to improve energy levels and vision, prevent cancer, boost immunity, premature ageing, protect against heart diseases, lower cholesterol and blood pressure and even decrease stroke risk and severity. But wait a minute! Did I say it lowers cholesterol? Yes, you heard me correctly. Red palm oil is an effective remedy for cholesterol. Palm oil helps to regulate blood pressure and lower cholesterol. Do you want scientific evidence? I have them in abundance, but space will not even allow me to delve into that area.

One thing you must keep in mind, however, is that most scientific studies are not neutral. Many of such studies have some economic and political undertone and motivation.

In the 1980s there was a successful campaign in Europe and America against Palm oil. Based on ‘scientific research’, Palm oil was replaced with trans fats in many European and American products due to concerns that consuming tropical oils (Can anything good come from Africa?) might jeopardise heart health. However, after a series of studies, it was revealed that trans-fat (Oyibo oils) was the real enemy, as it was linked to heart diseases and other health complications, while palm oil was found not only to be harmless but very beneficial for health, including protecting brain function, reducing heart disease risk factors and boosting vitamin A levels. After that, food manufacturers resumed using palm oil. Palm oil also found its way into non-food products, such as toothpaste, soap and cosmetics. I have a dream to one day pioneer the manufacturing of lipsticks and lips balm from palm oil.

Tocotrienol, from Vitamin E, which is found in red oil, is very good for fertility. It has even been said that one of the reasons for the increase in fibroids among Nigerian women and for the rising rate of infertility due to hormonal imbalance is the fact that we no longer take palm oil as our fore parents did. Do you remember those days of mama ibeji (mother of twins) among the Yoruba people? That was the period when women took lots of palm oil as part of their daily diet, resulting in high fertility rate. The problem started when we replaced red oil with all sorts of refined oils: groundnut oils, vegetable oils, olive oils, etc.

Studies suggest that palm oil’s antioxidant properties help prevent various types of cancers. It inhibits the development of skin, stomach, pancreas, lung, liver, breast, prostate, colon, and other cancers. Regular vitamin E supplement cannot perform these functions.

Palm oil’s antioxidant supply is also found to help prevent neurological degeneration by stopping free radicals that damage brain and nerve tissues, and promoting circulation, which increases your protection against diseases like dementia, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and other mental conditions.

Additional evidence also states that palm oil can help strengthen immune function and promote bone, eye, oral, lung, skin, and liver health. As a fat-rich oil, palm oil helps provide energy and enhance the absorption of fat-soluble nutrients such as vitamins A, D, and E. Consumption of red palm oil is safe, even in large amounts. It does not have any side effect similar to those induced by drugs. Because of palm oil’s composition, it metabolises more effectively with food; so, there is less risk of having abdominal discomfort or bowel problems.

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