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5 Ways to Survive the Office this Summer

Despite how beautiful the weather has been lately, it can make an office environment sticky and uncomfortable. Preparation is key when it comes to keeping cool during the summer and we have prepared 5 easy and creative ways to survive hot office temperatures in the UK.

#1 Avoid a big lunch

Small meals are much easier to digest and will prevent your body from feeling sluggish and hot. So when lunch time arrives, pass on a sandwich and opt for a fresh salad, or choose a light wrap over a pasta bowl. Keep as hydrated as possible throughout the day too and drink a glass of cool water before your meal to ensure you don’t overeat due to dehydration.  

#2 Keep windows closed

Yes, this might seem counterintuitive but by opening windows on a hot day, you are allowing warm air to circulate through the office and increase the temperature. Instead of opening windows, consider a desk fan or a personal fan that you can use to cool yourself down throughout the day.

#3 Wear your hair up

For those with long hair, make sure to wear your hair up and away from your face. Having your hair down can increase your body temperature and make you feel comfortable and sticky while working, especially if you begin to sweat.

#4 Run cold water on your wrists

If you’re feeling really uncomfortable in the heat, try running cold water over your wrists. This will help to cool the main veins that move blood through the body and help you to instantly feel cooler and more refreshed while in work.

#5 Make your own cooling spray

Using a recycled spray bottle, add about 5 to 10 drops of essential oil or lemon juice to water and enjoy the refreshing and natural spritz throughout the day. Gently spray on your skin for instant relief from the heat while at work.

It might be considerably hot during the working week and uncomfortable while working in an office, but as soon as the weekend arrives, you can fully embrace the summer and enjoy plenty of cold treats and outdoor activities. Remember to always wear sunscreen and stay hydrated.

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The Sugar Tax- is it the answer to the obesity epidemic?

 

Unfortunately the UK is no stranger to cases of childhood obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease and in a bid to combat this healthcare epidemic, the Sugar Tax has come into force. Drinks that contain a high level of sugar will now be taxed accordingly in order to encourage businesses to alter their recipes as well as deter consumers from choosing sugary beverages.

What is the Sugar Tax?

The Sugar Tax was first announced by former Chancellor George Osborne in his 2016 budget, and came into force in the UK on Friday 6th April 2018. Designed to charge manufacturers who produce high-sugar drinks more, the new tax is estimated to raise around £520 million which will be put to good use and help to fund sports groups, physical activities and even healthy breakfast clubs in primary schools.

The tax will not necessarily financially affect consumers, but you may find that a number of your favourite soft drinks will introduce a new recipe in order to avoid the levy. The tax itself will involve two bands, drinks that contain 5 to 8 grams of added sugar per 100ml which will result in a levy of 18p per litre, and drinks that contain 8 grams or more of added sugar per 100ml will be charged 24p per litre.

Drinks that will be exempted from the new tax will be pure fruit juice with naturally occurring sugar and beverages with a high milk content, as the calcium content has nutritional value. Soft drinks that are sugar-free such as Diet Coke will also be exempt.

The Sugar Tax will home in on fizzy drinks and energy drinks that contain excessive amounts of added sugar and are often targeted towards children.

What will the Sugar Tax plan to achieve?

The Sugar Tax aims to encourage manufacturers of mainly drinks to re-evaluate their recipes to reduce the amount of added sugar they use to produce some of our favourite soft drinks. Supported by health campaigner and celebrity chef, Jamie Oliver, the new tax is hoped to be a huge success and step forward to a healthier population.  However consumer feedback has been varied with a number of people arguing that the government shouldn’t interfere with personal choice.

 

A similar sugar tax is set to take place in France, Finland and Norway in relation to chocolate and confectionary. 

 

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5 Signs of Stress Not to Ignore

Between 2016 and 2017, over 500,000 employees in the UK were affected by work-related stress, with 12.5 million working days lost due to depression, anxiety and stress, according to government statistics. Stress is often described as the feeling of not being able to cope with the pressure of everyday life or a particularly difficult time in a person’s life. People who have suffered with work related stress report feeling overloaded, under serious pressure and are very emotional. Stress is a mental illness and can not only affect you on an emotional and mental level, but it can also affect your physical wellbeing. Those who are depressed, feel anxiety or are stressed tend to crave fatty and sugary food, are sleep deprived and don’t tend to look after themselves as much as they normally would. This can have a dramatic impact on the body and can even weaken the immune system, meaning you’re more likely to become ill and find it difficult to fight off infection. More serious conditions caused by stress can include high blood pressure, heart palpitations, cardio-vascular problems, migraines and chronic fatigue syndrome. 

With this in mind, here are 5 signs of stress that you should never ignore.

 

Problematic Skin

One of the first signs of stress that you can notice physically on the body and especially on the face is problematic skin. If you’re suffering from breakouts, blemishes, unexplained rashes or your eczema is becoming worse, this could be an indication that you’re suffering from stress. 

If you do notice breakouts, blemishes or problematic skin, you can use topical creams to help reduce the redness, irritation and damage to your skin, but you should also look at your daily life and routine and see if you can identify whether you may be suffering from stress, anxiety or depression.

 

Weak Immune System

If you find that you keep catching a cold or you can’t seem to kick a viral chest infection, stress may be to blame. Stress can cause you immune system to weaken, meaning that it is more difficult for you to recover from illness. The chemical reactions triggered by a stressful event or situation can cause stress hormones to be pumped around the body. These hormones can interfere with the immune system which can result in inflammation, reduced white blood cells which makes you more prone to infection and tissue damage. 

To boost your immune system while dealing with stress, you should eat a balanced diet rich in fruit and vegetables, take regular exercise and get at least 8 hours of sleep per night.

 

Anxiety

The NHS defines anxiety as the feeling of unease, worry and fear that can be mild or severe. It is quite normal to feel anxiety in your life, whether it be before a big exam, a job interview or a special event, but feeling anxious on a daily basis is a sign that you may be suffering from stress. This feeling can affect how you live your life, as you may begin to withdraw yourself from socialising, going to work or putting yourself in situations which you believe might trigger your anxiety. Anxiety can lead to panic attacks, phobias and social anxiety disorder. Often anxiety is caused by post-traumatic stress when you can experienced a particularly bad or painful experience recently or in the past. 

If you think that you’re suffering from anxiety, you can speak to your GP or family and friends who will be able to help you through this stressful time.

 

Shortness of Breath

Breathlessness can be a sign of stress, especially if you’re struggling to catch your breath without actually doing anything physically demanding. If you walk up a set of stairs and find it hard to catch your breath, this is quite normal, but if you’re breathless before leaving the house or while getting ready for work or to meet a friend, it sounds as though you may be suffering from anxiety or stress. Sometimes shortness of breath causes anxiety, while other times shortness of breath is brought on by anxiety. There are ways to deal with stress induced breathlessness such as taking up yoga or meditation, but to put your mind at ease, some people prefer to speak to their GP.  

 

Sugar Cravings

When you’re stressed, you’re more likely to crave sugary and fatty food and snacks to give yourself a quick burst of energy. This is because stress takes up a lot of energy from your body and makes you feel tired and lethargic. Whether you’re dealing with sleep deprivation, anxiety or suffering from a continuous cycle of colds and flu due to a week immune system, you will notice that you can’t help yourself from indulging in all matter of sweet stuff and junk food. If you notice that you’re eating a considerable amount of sweet fatty food, it’s time to look at your lifestyle and consider whether stress is an issue. 

 

Stress can affect people from any walk of life, at any age and at any stage in their life. It is not thing to be ashamed of, but left it can cause you serious health problems. If you think that you might be suffering from stress, anxiety or depression you should try to maintain a healthy lifestyle, seek help and support from family and friends and speak to your GP.

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5 Superfoods to Snack On at Your Desk in 2018

In 2018, switch your usual daily snacks for some more exotic flavours and ingredients and treat your body to five incredible superfoods. From the aromatic flavours of the Middle East, to fibre rich nuts and seeds, it’s time to transform your desk nibbles into something a little more exciting.

Maqui berries

Packed with antioxidants, Maqui berries are set to be a massive foodie trend for 2018. Not only are they delicious, they can help to regulate blood sugar levels, improve digestion and give your body a hit of antioxidants; perfect if you’re feeling a little worse for wear after a long weekend. Enjoy in a hearty bowl of low fat Greek yoghurt with a spoonful of honey.

 

Tiger nuts

 If you love to snack at your desk, Tiger nuts might just be the treat for you. A natural source of magnesium, they can help to relax muscles and aid stress. Rich in vitamin E and C, tiger nuts are thought to combat cholesterol and can be eaten whole. If you’re a vegan, tiger nuts are a fantastic natural substitute to dairy and can be soaked in water overnight and blended with vanilla to make tiger nut milk.

 

Moringa Smoothie

 If you jumped on the Matcha powder trend on 2017, you’re going to love the new superfood powder that’s about to transform our diets in 2018. Don’t be caught downing a Matcha latte at your desk when Moringa is the new superfood in town. Rich in Vitamin C, Moringa is a great powder to add to a morning smoothie as it is rich in antioxidants and may help to lower blood sugar levels, and cholesterol. 

 

Watermelon Seeds

 In 2018, watermelon seeds will be the hottest new topping for overnight oats, yoghurt and fruit bowls. You can eat them raw or roasted and you’ll be glad to know that they’re packed full of protein and vitamin B. Be careful though, as they are high in calories.

 

Za'atar Flatbread and Olive Oil

Middle Eastern flavours will be huge in 2018 and in particular the Lebanese spice Za'atar. More commonly known is other European countries as oregano, this spice is native to Lebanon, Syria, Israel, Palestine and Jordan. In the Middle East, Za'atar is savoured in the morning, when it is sprinkled onto flat bread with a drizzle of olive oil.

Switching your regular snacks to healthier alternatives or superfood treats can give you a range of health benefits.

 

 

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Obliterate Office Germs

It’s usually around this time of year when colds, sniffles and coughs begin to make their way into the office. From the odd sneeze from a member of your team to a full blown coughing fit from a member of the IT department, there is nothing worse than a room full of employees who would be better off tucked up in bed. How can you tackle the cold and flu season head-on in your workplace and reduce the need for time off work? Here are a couple of simple but effective ways of preventing an office full of ill employees this winter.

 

Antibacterial Hand Sanitisers

One of the best ways of stamping down the spread of office germs is to equip each employee with a desktop bottle of hand sanitiser. Once armed with antibacterial gel, your team will be able to clean their hands before eating at their desks and after sneezing or coughing as well as after moving around the office, which will help fight the spread of germs in the workplace. Hand sanitisers can cost as little as 50p per 100ml bottle, which fits nicely next to a desktop computer or laptop.

 

Wipe Down Desks and Keyboards

Keyboards, phones and laptops can quickly become contaminated, especially if used by several different individuals in the office. If people commute via public transport, germs can be transferred from buses and trains onto clothing and hands, then onto office equipment and spread throughout the work environment. To tackle this issue, it’s best to have desks, and the office itself, professionally cleaned and sanitised regularly. Having antibacterial wipes in the office will also help to encourage your team to clean their own desks every so often.

 

Educate Your Team on Basic Hygiene

It might seem obvious, but a lot of people are still unaware of the harm that not washing your hands properly can have on your health and it is worth putting on a basic office hygiene workshop to refresh people’s memories or educate them on the basics on preventing the spread of germs in the workplace. Providing your team with clear instructions on how to wash their hands properly, sanitise their desks efficiently and help to prevent themselves from getting ill, should help to reduce the number of sick days this winter.

Keeping your office clean and hygienic all year round is a team effort but with a little education and good workplace habits, you can help prevent the spread of germs and hopefully prevent your team from becoming ill this winter.

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New Healthcare Campaign to Prevent the Misuse of Antibiotics

700,000 people around the world die annually from drug resistant infections, the World Health Organisation has estimated. Antibiotic resistance is one of the biggest global health challenges we are facing this century. The crisis can be slowed down, but it will take a major push from international healthcare organisations to delay the spread of antibiotic resistance. Countries such as Finland, Switzerland and Japan have launched creative public campaigns to raise awareness of the issue.

In Finland, an innovative game has been launched to educate the public on the misuse of antibiotics and vaccines. Switzerland have created a memory game which is promoted to healthcare professionals and patients in waiting rooms to help educate both parties on the emerging issue. 

 Here in the UK, a TV campaign has launched to urge patients to stop pressuring their GPs for antibiotics in order to prevent antibiotics from becoming in-effective. Keep Antibiotics Working, will warn people about the risks of taking antibiotics for minor illnesses and how this can cause serious medical complications if they develop more severe infections later in life. Approximately 5,000 people in England die each year due to antibiotic resistance and experts predict that this figure could exceed cancer fatalities within 30 years. 

 

 

Bacteria Developing a Resistance to Antibiotics

 Scientists from a Birmingham University have found, through a decade-long research project, that E.coli bacteria has developed a method to defend itself against two major antibiotics. Used to treat sepsis and local infections, the two forms of antibiotics are no longer an effective method to fight E.coli bacteria. E.coli, a major risk to hospital patients can causes sepsis if it is able to access the bloodstream but is also and more commonly associated with cases of food poisoning. The research comes as a stark reminder that excessive use of antibiotics can actually help bacteria to evolve and develop an antibacterial tolerance.

 

 

When Are Antibiotics Needed?

 Unfortunately for GPs and medical professionals, viral infections have very similar symptoms as a bacterial infection, so trying to determine whether to prescribe antibiotics or not, can be difficult. A lab test is the only way to have a definitive answer, but this can take up valuable resources.

 

 If you have a fever, chills or you’re shaking, you could have a bacterial infection, but these symptoms could also indicate that you have the flu. Your GP will need to assess your symptoms and whether it is likely that you have the flu or not, before prescribing antibiotics.

 

 Most viral infections tend to last a while and can develop into a more severe illness featuring bacteria. If you have been suffering for a couple of weeks, you will likely be prescribed a dose of antibiotics.

 

 The issue of antibiotic resistance is serious, but with public awareness and education we can also form a defence against this persistent health concern.  

 

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How Technology is Improving UK Healthcare

Technology is helping shape and mould the future of healthcare within the United Kingdom. Improving accessibility, communication and efficiency, new technological advances are helping to improve the quality of care that patients receive. Let’s explore some of the most recent developments in technology and artificial intelligence that are helping to improve the healthcare sector.

 

Instant Communication with Patients

Not a recent breakthrough in technology by any means, but GP surgeries and dental practices are finally using SMS messaging to directly contact patients. Considerable time and money could be saved each year if patients cancelled GP or dental appointments that were no longer needed, and now, thanks to the use of text messaging services, practices can contact their patients 24 hours before a scheduled appointment to give them the opportunity to cancel if required. The text message also acts as a solid reminder, for those who have booked an appointment in advance, and may have missed the appointment by simply forgetting to make a note of it.

 

Artificial Intelligence (AI)Diagnosis

Apps and artificial intelligence are leading the way in digital diagnosis, saving medical professionals precious time and money. There are new entrants to the market, founded with the aim of increasing accessibility of healthcare, providing a database of hand-picked medical experts who are able to be accessed by downloading an app. Rather than calling up your GP and booking an appointment,   access a medical professional or doctor from the comfort of your home can be provided enabling  a virtual consultation regarding your medical concerns by mobile device. The app can also arrange a prescription to be sent directly to your home address or to your local pharmacy. Combing AI and qualified medical professionals, patients can access instant help and support without the need to book and wait for a GP appointment. The app however has its flaws, and should not be used for emergency medical help or as a replacement to a physical examination and diagnosis.

Health trackers and fitness monitors are also being developed to improve patient health, and are set to save thousands of lives. . According to electronics consultancy Plextek, the use of such devices could cut NHS costs per patient by up to 60%.

 

Microsoft AI Software for the Health Industry

Tech giant, Microsoft are planning a new healthcare division at its research facility in Cambridge. Using artificial intelligence Microsoft plans include a monitoring system that has been specially designed to keep patients out of hospitals and provide alerts if problems occur. If the software is a success, it will dramatically reform the NHS, freeing up hospital beds for medical emergencies. With less strain on doctors, the quality of patient care will inevitably improve, as doctors will have more time to spend analysing a patient’s condition and discussing healthcare options.

 

Technology is clearly shaping the way to view and provide healthcare in the UK and, with further development, will hopefully save both the NHS and the private healthcare sector time and money. 

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Singapore to Host World’s Largest Workplace Health & Safety Congress

In 2017, Singapore will be welcoming over 3,000 international delegates from over 100 countries to attend The World Congress on Safety and Health at Work.

Held every three years, the event will take place in Marina Bay Sands, on the 3rd of September through to the 6th, and will highlight expert views on occupational health and safety. The congress has been organised by the Occupational Safety and Health Division, Ministry of Manpower and in conjunction with the International Labour Organisation and the International Social Security Association.

An international issue, occupational wellbeing is one of the most under-addressed workplace problems in the 21st century and only during such events, is employee health and safety finally put under the microscope.

The World Congress on Safety and Health at Work will provide a much needed platform for professional and medical opinions from around the world to be noted and heard by key decision makers such as government and public authorities who can implement such changes and even enforce them to improve employee wellbeing.

The event has been broken up into three main segments:

 

1.      Vision Zero- From Vision to Reality

Vision Zero aims to address injuries and poor health that is both directly and in-directly caused or made worse by an employee’s workplace or working environment. It calls for employers to focus on finding a solution to prevent such injuries and ill-health from occurring as often as they currently do.

 

2.      Healthy Work- Healthy Life

Healthy Work will discuss improving your team’s overall health and wellbeing and go into more detail about achieving a sustainable team. This is crucial as employees are adapting to a faster and more complex working environment, health and safety regulations and legislation will also need to adapt and change as required to support and protect employees.

 

3.      People-centred- Prevention

Joining forces to build an inclusive workplace for occupational Safety and Health. Supporting the sustainable efforts to promote, protect and educate people of all demographics.

 

Thought leaders and OSH practitioners will be both attending and speaking during the world congress to discuss their shared and global vision to improve the workplace environment and overall employee wellbeing. Speakers include the Minister of Social Affairs and Health in Finland, Ms Pirkko Mattila, Argentina’s Secretary Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Security, Mr Ezequel Sabor as well as Dr Christa Sedlatschek Executive Director, European Agency for Safety and Health at Work.

For more information please visit http://www.safety2017singapore.com

 

 

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UK Healthcare announce sponsor partnership with Bolton Wanderers Community Trust

UK Healthcare have announced a  partnership with Bolton Wanderers Community Trust,which will see them sponsoring the disability suite at Bolton Wanderers Football Club for the 2017/18 season. The partnership will also include the provision by UK Healthcare of waterproof covers for wheelchair users using bays pitch side in other parts of the ground on match days.

The UK Healthcare Suite at BWFC’s Macron Stadium offers a way for those in wheelchairs to enjoy home matches in comfort; with heated wheelchair bays, a panoramic view of the pitch from its elevated vantage point, and easy lift access to and from the suite. The sponsorship means that the suite can continue to offer its services to fans with disabilities throughout the 2017/18 season; helping those who find it difficult to brave the elements in colder months to enjoy the matches in a warm and sheltered environment.

Phil Mason, Head of the Bolton Wanderers Community Trust said, “We are delighted about this new partnership. It is supporting key work both at the Club and in the community that is real going to help make a difference to people’s lives. New provision for this coming season includes delivering a youth club specifically for those with disabilities, via the support of UK Healthcare. We are really looking forward to working with UK Healthcare over the coming season and are grateful for their tremendous support”.

Stephen Pugh from UK Healthcare commented, “We’re really excited about this new partnership and a significant reason why UK Healthcare wanted to get involved is the vital work being carried out in the wider community of Bolton by the Bolton Wanderers Community Trust. We know that the Bolton Wanderers Disability Football Club offers people of all ages and abilities the chance to get involved with playing, and participation in the ‘Every Player Counts’ programme which is doing great things to help people with disabilities across the region to get all of the benefits of making active and healthy choices and being part of a team. We’re delighted to be a part of helping great projects like this to continue and expand.”

 For more information about UK Healthcare or this partnership, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . For more information on the work and projects run by the Bolton Wanderers Community Trust, visit their website or email them at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 About Bolton Wanderers Community Trust:

 The Bolton Wanderers Community Trust is a registered charity (no. 1090753) that uses sport and other positive activities to engage with the community throughout the Bolton area and help narrow the gap of disadvantage. Their work includes running sports activities for people of all ages and abilities. This includes summer kids’ football courses during school holidays to regular training, coaching and matches for adults and children with disabilities. They work alongside Bolton Council and a variety of other local and national organisations to deliver high quality community projects and services that can make a big difference in the lives of those involved.

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UKH Foundation proudly donates £2,500 to the Meningitis Research Foundation

 

 

THE UKH Foundation has proudly donated £2,500 to Meningitis Research Foundation (MRF) to support the charity’s free helpline and support service. The helpline is a vital resource for families and individuals affected by meningitis or septicaemia. To find out more about the helpline, click here.

 

MRF funds vital scientific research into the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of meningitis and septicaemia, as well as raising awareness of the diseases and supporting those affected. MRF estimates that there have been on average around 3,200 cases of meningitis and septicaemia every year in the UK. They are deadly diseases that can strike without warning, killing one in ten, and leaving a quarter of survivors with life altering after-effects ranging from deafness and brain damage to loss of limbs.

 

Not only does MRF spend almost £1 million a year in the UK supporting those affected and providing free information to the public and healthcare professionals; the charity has also invested over £18.9 million in vital scientific research. Since the charity was founded in 1989, it has awarded 156 research grants.

 

MRF Head of Support, Rob Dawson said, “We are very grateful to UK Healthcare for this generous donation. We rely on donations to provide all of our vital services. The funds will help enable us to keep the helpline and support service running.”

 

MRF has recently launched their Stop The Spread campaign, to encourage young people in the UK to get their MenACWY vaccine to protect themselves against a deadly strain of meningitis that is spreading among students - the MenW bug. By getting the free MenACWY vaccine from their GP, young people will be protecting themselves against four strains of meningitis and helping to stop the spread of the bacteria to others. For more information, click here.

 

To find out more about MRF, you can visit their website by clicking here.

 

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UKH Foundation donates £2,500 to Teenage Cancer Trust

 

We are happy to announce that UKH Foundation has donated £2,500 to Teenage Cancer Trust to help support teenagers in the UK who are diagnosed with cancer. Approximately 7 people between the age of 13 and 24 are diagnosed with cancer in the UK every day.

UKH Foundation was proud to donate £2,500 to Teenage Cancer Trust for all their incredible work in the North West; in particular, The Youth Empowerment Programme. The programme is a source of non-clinical support for young people who have been affected by cancer. This can include helping them to improve their social skills, giving them access to peer support, and connecting them with other young people that have been affected by cancer.

Being diagnosed with cancer at any age can be a daunting and heart-breaking situation to be in, but cancer as a teenager can make a young person feel very isolated and trigger a lot of questions. Teenage Cancer Trust’s Youth Empowerment Programme helps young people to regain a sense of normality, happiness and enjoyment at a very difficult time in their lives, as well as providing not just a support network, but a group of friends.

For more information on Teenage Cancer Trust and the incredible work that they do, you can visit their website here.

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