GET GLOWING

BEAUTY & WELLNESS

GET GLOWING

Gabrielle Borromeo, Manila, Philippines

Published in the Daily Tribune Life
January 9, 2012

Breaking free from the city and stepping into a natural enclave is quite impossible without having to take a long trip. Incredibly, The Spa at Fort Bonifacio makes such an escape possible. At the Global City, entering The Spa feels like teleporting. The entrance is relaxing with its nature-themed furniture, greenery and cascading water falls beside the stairs leading to the main sanctum.

Every branch of The Spa has its own design theme, and at the Fort, the different villas have their own names: Villa 1: Rome, Villa 2: Barcelona, Villa 3: Paris, Villa 4: Florence, Villa 5: London, Villa 6: Tokyo, Villa 7: Milan, Villa 8: Frankfurt and Villa 9: Beijing (Sauna only). The Loft is where a small group can enjoy Spa Parties and such.

I was brought to Villa 1: Rome, just the right size for a single excursion. It has its own tub where one could enjoy a soak and a Steam/Shower room. Half an hour for a Jacuzzi splash was a delight in the privacy of a villa. I soaked in my moment of serenity, absorbing it all like a sponge, feeling that this time spent for rejuvenation was more of a need than a want. Definitely one needs to refresh one’s body and soul, cleanse it from all grime and dirt and feel the stresses float away.

To boot, a mega volume of The Spa’s signature bubbles can make the time more playful and relaxing. I had never seen such a load of bubbles than in the Spa – not in any of the five-star`hotels I have stayed in with their luxury toiletries.

Getting out of the tub was really hard especially when staying there just felt so right, but it was all for the best as Rechelle Deontoy, the kind lady who told me to liendown on my stomach for the next round of satisfaction, gave me a full body scrub.

I was told to relax and lie down. I felt her hands like ocean waves filled with sand massaging my body, waves that just kept rolling over my skin as if I were the ocean shore. There was a certain roughness from the grains that cleansed every pore of my body. It was like a bath in bed, and how many people get baths in bed? The sand as it seemed to be was actually jojoba wax beads.

The Spa’s new body treatment Crystalline is a comforting and pampering treatment that starts with an uplifting body scrub treatment by Pevonica Botanica, a natural skincare brand offered by spas worldwide including The Spa Wellness. The Spa is committed to providing effective skincare solutions to teens, women and men of every age. The Pevonia Botanica brand maintains a harmonious balance with nature and it offers natural formulations packaged in fully recyclable and biodegradable materials.

With Pevonia Botanica, skin is renewed and polished with a natural, gentle scrub rich with components that nature has to offer, leaving it livelier, softer and fairer. The delicate jojoba wax beads smoothen and reveal baby-soft skin. The scrub is made with lemon, chamomile, rosemary, aloe vera gel and jojoba wax beads. The components used are definitely pro-nature and feels like the reawakening of the new life of my skin.

Lemon, one of the components, was used because it brightens up the skin, tones it well and has a natural fresh citrus fragrance. Chamomile calms and heals the skin. Rosemary rejuvenates and improves blood circulation. Aloe vera gel tightens and soothes and, of course, jojoba wax beads, a non-irritating natural grain, polishes the skin.

After the scrub, I was given a few minutes alone to wash away any sand-like particles and to feel the smoothness of my new skin. Yes, indeed, it felt like new skin had covered me. The smoothness was like lotion on my body but without the heaviness.

I then stood up go to my very own private shower room right in the privacy of my very own villa. Then Lilibeth Vidal, my masseuse of the day, came inside my villa and told me to lie down again. I relaxed my muscles and sank into a world of calmness as she massaged my skin with crystalline lotion. If I wanted a heavy massage or a lighter one, I was asked to simply speak up.

The Spa’s deeply relaxing classic massages are shiatsu, Swedish, combination or deep tissue. While shiatsu is a relaxing and rejuvenating Japanese-style acupressure massage that works on vital energy points to unlock and balance the body’s chi, deep tissue is for those who seek the profound relief of a penetrating massage. Swedish, on the other hand, soothes sore muscles, increases circulation and relieves body tension because of the special oil that is massaged on the body like flowing strokes.

Combination is a muscle-soothing flow of Swedish massage and a special oil, coupled with the chi-balancing power of shiatsu’s finger pressure. These massages are rendered with Pevonia Botanica’s breakthrough massage oil, a rich blend of safflower, geranium and vitamin E for ultimate skin nourishment, repair, hydration and powerful antioxidant boost.

With the Crystalline Skin body treatment, it’s one’s choice to pick one of the four preferences for the massage. Like all good things, my relaxing and spirit lifting session came to an end. I thought that after a massage, I had to get up and leave, but what a surprise, there was still 30 minutes of stretching plus complimentary cups of soothing ginger tea!

Aside from The Fort, The Spa branches are located at Acropolis-Libis (634-2709, 634-2848), Alabang (850-3490, 850-6836), Eastwood Mall/ Richmonde Hotel (709-6868, 709-7878), Greenbelt(840-1325, 840-1326), Rockwell (470-6868, 470- 7878) and Trinoma (900-8809, 900-8818).

Visit www.thespa.com.ph for more information.

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Writers

Dinah Sabal-Ventura
dinah_ventura@write-experts.com

Geraldine “Reggie” Rullan-Borromeo
reggie_rullan@write-experts.com

Malu Mora-Rullan
malu_rullan@write-experts.com

AGE DEFYING CREAM PROVES EFFECTIVE

BEAUTY & WELLNESS, HEALTH

AGE DEFYING CREAM PROVES EFFECTIVE

Reggie Rullan-Borromeo, Manila, Philippines

Published in the Daily Tribune Life
Thursday, 02 August 2012

Hitting 40 is a harsh reality, with telltale signs of wrinkles coming from all sides of one’s face. At 20, wrinkles were inexistent. At 30, it still is not an issue though some warning signs begin to show. At 40, taking care of the emerging wrinkles becomes a daily routine in an effort to look at least a decade younger.

I had recently begun using a wrinkle wand, and as I slid it over the lines I wished the wrinkles away as well. The problem was, come nighttime after I wash my face, the wrinkle wand’s magic disappeared along with my facial wash.

When I met Olay ambassador Tessa Prieto-Valdes up close and personal in an intimate lunch at Stephanie Zubiri’s place in Makati City, she challenged me to a skin regeneration test. As the soup bowl was laid down in front of me, Tessa said that by the time dessert was served, she would show me how the fine lines on my forehead would literally disappear.

Just as dessert was served, Tessa uncovered the New Olay Regenerist Wrinkle Relaxing Cream and invited me to apply a thin layer of the mousse on my forehead. A close-up photo of my forehead was then taken, and I went on to eat my peanut butter mousse and mini carrot muffins. Just as I ate the last morsel, Tessa turned her eyes on me and gave me a hand mirror so I could examine my forehead.

The fine lines I had looked at every morning before I applied my wrinkle wand had indeed faded away. I looked closely again and tilted my head to one side then the other. Another picture of my forehead was taken and the before and after pictures were put up on a laptop screen side-by-side.

There was no time for the photographer to retouch my face as it all happened right before my eyes. To see was really to believe. There was a remarkable difference between the before and after shots of my forehead.

The beauty of this cream is that unlike other types, one does not need to wait several days to see results. One application is all it takes to see visible changes in one’s skin, said Tessa. Olay’s breakthrough technology reduces the appearance of wrinkles in a few minutes.

Tessa shares her own experience with the product: “It dramatically and visibly removed the appearance of wrinkles in the same time it took me to put the finishing touches to my outfit. I couldn’t believe it!”

Olay scientists share that repeated temporary expression lines lead to permanent wrinkles. Another study also showed that dry skin poses double the speed at which women develop permanent facial wrinkles. As a result of these studies, the new Olay Regenerist Wrinkle Relaxing Cream was created.

When I asked Tessa how is it possible that one application can dramatically redefine my forehead lines, she shared with me that each person’s skin has its own optical signature.

Younger skin diffuses and reflects light evenly since the skin is smoother. In older skin, light gets trapped in “valleys” or the deeper lines and wrinkles, retarding diffusion and reflection.

The new Olay Regenerist Wrinkle Relaxing Cream’s claim tof fame is it revolutionary skin care with its ability to dramatically reduce the appearance of wrinkles visibly in just a single application. The micro-filler technology — a combination of three sizes of particles that fill in the different kinds of “valleys” created by skin line creates a smooth surface for the light to reflect. That is why these particles effectively reduce the appearance of facial lines and wrinkles in just one application as the light diffuses and reflects on now smoother skin.

My next question for Tessa was that since wrinkles will become deeper with age, I’ll be on a constant dose of the cream to keep on filling my skin’s deeper valleys. Not so, Tessa said, as the product also addresses chronic wrinkles in 14 days.

New Olay Regenerist Wrinkle Relaxing Cream also contains a combination of B3 complex and advanced biopeptides to provide long-term improvement on wrinkles, even the look of deep eye lines in 14 days. Biopeptides stimulate cell activity to help hydrate and repair the skin while vitamin B3 (niacinamide), pro-vitamin B5 and vitamin E fortify, condition and protect the stratum corneum or the skin’s moisture barrier to help it retain its natural moisture.

New Olay Regenerist Wrinkle Relaxing Cream also has intense hydrators to prevent frequent expression lines from progressing into permanent wrinkles. This means that one can rely on it to reverse the lines with continued use and enjoy the satisfaction of getting instant results at the same time.

Olay Regenerist Wrinkle Relaxing Cream is exclusively available at Watson’s and SM Department Stores.

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Writers

Dinah Sabal-Ventura
dinah_ventura@write-experts.com

Geraldine “Reggie” Rullan-Borromeo
reggie_rullan@write-experts.com

Malu Mora-Rullan
malu_rullan@write-experts.com

FOOD NOURISHES AND FOOD HEALS

BEAUTY & WELLNESS, HEALTH

FOOD NOURISHES AND FOOD HEALS

Reggie Rullan-Borromeo, Manila, Philippines

NOVEMBER 7, 2014

Eating for reckless pleasure overlooks the inherent nutritional value of food. Food fuels the body’s the energy needs and nurse’s one back to health. Taking food beyond the sensory experience, allows one to maximize its benefits.

Making deliberate choices in what one eats not only provides momentary pleasure but also long term benefits. After all each one has only been given one body and sooner or later, one’s food history will determine one’s health.

For any athlete, foods that build the muscle; make one more energetic and move faster; develop endurance; heal injuries and help restore the over all efficiency of the body, ensure better performance and staying power in a particular sport. What then must an athlete eat? While protein is an important part of an athlete’s diet to build the muscles, excess protein combined with fat slows down one’s performance as the digestive system will use up one’s energy in processing it.

Eating the right protein is essential and the sources include lean cuts of meat taken in moderate portions. Red meats contain a higher fat content than white meat, thus, the former must be taken in smaller portions. Fish and poultry without the skin contain less fat and is a better source of one’s regular protein intake. Tofu and legumes are also alternative sources of protein which just like everything else must also be taken in moderation.

Energy building foods are complex carbohydrates from vegetables and fruits that are eaten in a state of optimum nutrition, this means eating them as close to their raw state as possible. Next time one gets a hunger rush, reaching for a banana or apple will fuel one’s energy better than processed wheat or starch based snacks. Even munching on a carrot, cucumber or celery stick will not only do wonders for one’s energy but also for one’s waistline.

Even an athlete needs some fat and the sources of fat must be carefully identified to minimize health risks. Olive and other vegetable oils and fish oils are recommended over animal fat, which includes dairy fat. But oil is still oil, thus moderation is not the key, rather minimization. Total eradication of fat from the diet is not recommended as the body still needs fat to provide insulation and to function properly. Fats not only help store energy, it also transports vitamins within the body and are vital components of the brain, skin, and organs of the body.

Making the right food choices will then allow one to not only enjoy the taste and texture of food, its sight and smell, it will also make food one’s building blocks and injury repair kit for better sports performance. As Hippocrates had famously said thousands of years ago: “Let food be your medicine and medicine be your food.”

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Writers

Dinah Sabal-Ventura
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Geraldine “Reggie” Rullan-Borromeo
reggie_rullan@write-experts.com

Malu Mora-Rullan
malu_rullan@write-experts.com

BEWARE THE “SILENT KILLER”

HEALTH, MEDICAL, PHARMACY

BEWARE THE “SILENT KILLER”

Reggie Rullan-Borromeo, Manila, Philippines

Published in the Daily Tribune Life
Thursday, 19 July 2012

The silent killer, unbeknownst to many, is a rotavirus infection that wraps its deadliness around children when left unchecked.

The common onset of loose or watery stools among children is dismissed by many parents and caregivers as part of childhood where children usually touch the floor or ground as they play and put dirty objects in their mouths. Some may think this kind of diarrhea is merely viral and will pass after a few days. The usual immediate and sole resort is to keep the child clean and hydrated.

The rotavirus infection, however, causes a severe form of diarrhea, which has been identified as the leading cause of death among children with diarrhea. As of January 2012, the 13th Asian Conference on Diarrheal Disease and Nutrition (ASCODD) released data that the rotavirus infection is responsible for over 600,000 childhood deaths per year globally. To put it more closely, every minute, one child dies due to rotavirus-related gastroenteritis (RVGE).

In Brazil, its national program reduced the mortality rate of children less than one year of age due to rotavirus by 48 percent. These results were presented in the 6th World Congress of the World Society for Pediatric Infectious Diseases (WSPID) in 2009. The main cause for the significant reduction of deaths was idenitifed as the initiative of the Brazilian government to nationalize vaccination against the rotavirus infection.

Gastroenteritis (GE)-related hospitalization in Brazil in children under five years of age was reduced by 31 percent after the implementation of the rotavirus vaccination, a testament to its effectiveness in reducing the incidents of the disease.

The Philippines follows its lead this year and at the helm of the initiative is the Department of Health Secretary Enrique T. Ona, who launched the public-private partnership and global collaboration to ensure that children all over the Philippines have access to the rotavirus vaccination.

In the Philippines, the recorded number of deaths per year due to rotavirus infection is 3,500. For all types of diarrhea, the total number of deaths per year is 89,000. While the oral rehydration therapy (ORT) helped scale down diarrhea as the number one cause to the seventh cause of death, it cannot be ignored that to date diarrhea is still in the top ten cause of disease related mortality.

As there is no cure for RVGE, the treatment option is to properly and effectively manage the symptoms of the disease. Thus, the effectiveness of vaccination in the incidence of severe RVGE becomes important in the fight against mortality rates among children due to this disease.

According to a booklet released by the Rotavirus Organization for Training and Advocacy in the Philippines, a child can easily get infected by contaminants in food, drinks and objects touched by the child. The rotavirus infection is highly contagious and even a small dose of infection can cause severe diabetes. The rotavirus infection has even been found in the secretions from the respiratory track of children, thus, raising the possibility that the infection may be transmitted through the air.

Worse, the infection when on the surface of a human body survives for hours on end and when on the surface of solid objects, survives for several days, making the incidence of contamination higher. The rotavirus infection has even been found to survive in a child’s stool for 21 days.

The ASCODD held recently in Tagaytay had representatives from the Philippines, Bangladesh, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and other countries and they focused in their mission to prevent and manage diarrhea, along with preventive nutrition interventions, in Southeast Asia and Asean countries.

“As it alarmingly causes a significant number of child deaths, as well as impacts child growth and development, RVGE must be urgently addressed by Asia-Pacific’s medical community. And taking off from the success of Brazil’s program, the Philippines, as announced by Sec. Ona, is pushing to be the first country to implement rotavirus vaccination all over the region to combat the scourge of the rotavirus,” says Dr. Lulu Bravo, conference chair of 13th Asian Conference on Diarrheal Disease and Nutrition.

Since the ASCODD’s launch in February 1981 in Dhaka, Bangladesh, it is being hosted every two years in an Asian country. Since then, eleven conferences were held in seven different Asian countries.

The vision of the 13th ASCODD Organizing Committee, which is composed of the Section of Infectious and Tropical Disease in Pediatrics (INTROP) and the Section of Gastroenterology and Nutrition, both from the Department of Pediatrics at the Philippine General Hospital, University of the Philippines Manila and the International Society of Tropical Pediatrics-Philippines (ISTP-Philippines), is to provide a platform for global collaboration and knowledge sharing to address the urgency of the incidence of deaths due to the rotavirus infection.

The ASCODD Secretariat is located in ICDDR, Dhaka, Bangladesh. Currently, the ASCODD international officials are Dr. N.K. Ganguly (president); Dr. Yati Soenarto (immediate past president); and Dr. K.M.S. Aziz (secretary general). Advisors for ASCODD XIII are Dr. Alejandro Cravioto (ICDDR, B), Prof. Yushifumi Takeda (Japan), Dr. B.K. Nair (NICED, India), Prof. Zulfiqar Bhutta (Pakistan), and Dr. Nils-Kare Barkeland (Bergen University, Norway).

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Writers

Dinah Sabal-Ventura
dinah_ventura@write-experts.com

Geraldine “Reggie” Rullan-Borromeo
reggie_rullan@write-experts.com

Malu Mora-Rullan
malu_rullan@write-experts.com