One Man’s Crusade Against Sugary Drinks

coca-cola-473780_640Here is an interesting way to take a stand. Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver has declared that he’s putting a “sugar tax” on all sweet drinks that are served at his restaurants. And he is doing so as a protest to the government’s refusal to introduce such a measure. He plans to charge 10p for every sugary drink bought at his stores, and the money will go towards better education about healthy eating.

As he told the Sunday Times: “I was born into the restaurant industry and I truly believe that by joining together on this issue we not only send a powerful and strong message to government but we also have the potential to make a long lasting legacy that could ripple across the world. I’ve seen first-hand the heartbreaking effects that poor diet and too much sugar is having on our children’s health and futures. Young children are needing multiple teeth pulled out under general anesthetic and one in three kids [is] now leaving primary school overweight or obese. Soft drinks are the biggest single source of sugar among school-age kids and teenagers and so we have to start here.’

All money from the levy will go into the fund for the charity Sustain, which advocates for better food and farming policies and practices to support children to eat more healthy foods. The Jamie Oliver Restaurant Group plans to kick off the efforts by donating £25,000 and they expect to raise about £80,000 in the first year from the tax.

Recently, when urged to impose such a tax, the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said Mr Cameron did not “believe that the right approach here is to put sugar taxes on hard-working people to increase the weight and cost of their shopping baskets.”

John Castle Sells Historic Winter White House

The Kennedy Family in 1931
The Kennedy Family in 1931

Fondly called the “Winter White House,” a magnificent home in Palm Beach, Florida, once owned by the Kennedy family, was sold in June by John Castle of Castle Harlan for $31 million. The new owner is Jane Goldman, the daughter of Sol Goldman, New York real estate mogul.

The Kennedy’s were not the first owners, but under their auspices the property became famous. It was purchased by Joseph P. Kennedy Sr, President John Kennedy’s father, in 1933, from the original owners, the Wannamaker family. When Kennedy became president he often brought his young family on holidays to the beautiful beachfront estate. His trips to Florida charmed his constituency who were delighted to watch every move of this charismatic, enchanting politician and his family.

In 1995 the Kennedy family sold the property, which became known as a national treasure, to John K. Castle and his wife Marianne for $4.9 million. Included in the deal were the interior furnishings as well.

Before the Castles moved in they spent additional money and two years renovating the mansion. Built in the 1920s, the home did not have central air conditioning. The Castles also wanted to preserve several of the more historic rooms to remain the same as when the first family lived there. Now its Jane Goldman’s turn to enjoy the lovely premises.

Staying Safe After a Jellyfish Sting

animal-2883_640Summertime means warm days, a lot of fresh air and the chance to go to the pool or ocean. Certainly, all of these activities involve risk. And one of the risks in swimming in the ocean is that you may encounter a jellyfish. Most of the time a jellyfish sting isn’t going to send you to the hospital, but it is important to know when it will, and what to do for the common jellyfish sting.

First of all, people should know to call emergency if the person displays signs of a severe allergic reaction (difficulty breathing and other symptoms), if the sting is from a box jellyfish and if the sting covers more than half an arm or leg. Box jellyfish are deadly and are most commonly found in coastal waters off Northern Australia and throughout the Indo-Pacific.

Assuming that you’ve experienced a regular jellyfish sting, here are some tips. Many people believe that you should urinate on the area that has been stung, the NHS however recommends applying shaving cream to prevent the spread of toxins. They also say you should use a razor blade, credit card or shell to remove any poisonous sacs that are stuck to the skin. Others recommend rinsing the area with vinegar for thirty seconds or more, but some say that this can make some stings worse. If this isn’t available, use baking soda. Soak the area in hot water for at least 20 minutes or use cold packs if you don’t have access to hot water.

Any discomfort can then be treated with a hydrocortisone cream and Tylenol or other over the counter pain medication.

Be safe in the water and know what to do in times of trouble.

91 Years Young and Running Marathons

sports-shoes-115150_640If you haven’t heard this story yet, you’ll want to be inspired by it. 92 year hold Harriette Thompson recently finished the Suja’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon in San Diego.

As she crossed the finish line in 7 hours, 24 minutes and 36 seconds, she set a world record as the fastest marathon ever run by a woman over 90. This washer 15th marathon, all of which have been part of the Rock ‘n’ Roll running brand.

In her younger years, Thompson was a concert pianist who performed at Carnegie Hall three times. She actually didn’t run her first marathon until she was 76. And she has survived cancer twice. She runs to raise money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and she has managed to raise over $90,000.

As Thompson said, “I hit up all the people in my retirement home. Every year I write them a (thank you) note and say ‘I think this is my last year.’ Then I do another one.”

When asked what her secret to living such a long and successful life, Thompson responded:

“I guess the secret is just keep going and pleasant thoughts.”