For the Intrepid Traveler

Travel agencies and tour companies are always trying to advertise their product as the most comprehensive and inexpensive package available. For the intrepid traveler, however, claims are not enough and unless complemented by the accurate map detailing everything from time required to costs incurred, they will remain unconvinced. Into this scenario, we bring in flash maps and the option of including everything one needs to know in one visually arresting, easy-to-understand map.

How does it work? Well, we begin by choosing an area of interest to the traveler. In this case, we pick Europe as an example. Countries in Europe have sharp seasonal changes and therefore the weather has to be kept in mind at all times. In this case, let’s make a map for a summer break euro trip. On this trip one can cover all the northern and mid-European countries. First thing to do on this map is the mark the main cities, once this is done, the next step is to plot the routes to and fro that point, each route can be provided with a mouse over option which will provide information such as airline and train services and approximate cost of both.

The pin points marking the cities can be provided with a drill down option to provide basic information about the place and also the best time of the year to visit. If the city has a homepage then that link can also be provided on the map. The map can also be colored in order to indicate the areas of Europe that are best visited in certain seasons. Another version of the map can be engineered to show the kind of budget one requires to traverse an area. If a budget-wise color-coding is done, then a student traveler or a luxury traveler would simply have to click on a zone and then choose options accordingly.

Distinguish From the Normal Salons and Spas

Health Clinic Salons are a bit harder to distinguish from the normal salons and spas because they all cater to the health and well being of their clients and people in general.

In general, Health Clinic Salons are no different from other spas except that they cater to more health-related issues. Doctors offer skin treatments and advise exercises that are good for you. They provide yoga exercises and workouts aside from their pampering services.

However, to make a distinction, Health Clinic Salons offer services that focus more on rejuvenation of the body and its wellness rather than aesthetic concerns. Albeit, they are also concerned with beauty, these salons place priority in enriching a person’s health to make him or her beautiful.

These types of salons offer spiritual programs such as tai chi and yoga. Fitness centers have services such as pilates and stretching exercises. Licensed medical doctors are also available for medically-related needs. However, they are no different from spas in the services that they offer.

Health Clinic Salons promote health by offering services that will relax the mind and aid the body. Not to mention, these spas offer services that are handled only by highly skilled staff that are licensed professionals.

These salons emphasize corrective and preventive cures and make use of techniques, both modern and traditional. Either way, these techniques revive the person’s body to a better state of health.

Some health clinic salons offer Chinese and Acupuncture Services, Dietary and Nutritional Counseling, Medical or Clinical Massage, and Deep Swedish or Swedish massage. In order to make it similar to other salons and spas, it offers Day Spa services such as Foot Therapy, Spa Facials, Body Salt Glows, and Body Contour Wraps among other treatments.

Programs and treatment techniques help restore the body’s balance and reawaken the natural healing mechanisms of the body. Because it is a facility that wants to prevent ailments, it seeks to promote good health, proper diet, and exercise. Health clinic salons teach individuals that little changes in exercise, diet, and daily routines can prove to have a positive effect and enhance the individual’s progress towards increased stability, strength, and vitality.

Food and Board on a Shoestring

Everyone travels for different reasons. Some people travel for leisure, other people for business, and some for research. Once while in Italy I even ran into two Danes who were in Italy purely for the food! But if you are like me, you travel to experience new cultures, open your mind, get out of the monotony of daily life, meet new people, and visit the places you have always dreamed of seeing. Unfortunately, we all aren’t Donald Trump. Most of us simply can not afford to stay in hotels, eat out every meal, and take taxis everywhere when we travel. I am writing this for the people who have always dreamed of seeing the world, but don’t have thousands of dollars to spend. If this is you, pay close attention, because you can travel anywhere in the world, for as little as 5 dollars a day.

The first and most important way to save money is to either not pay for housing, or find the cheapest around. Often upon hearing this, people assume that means you will be staying in disgusting and dirty places. However, in my experience this is not always the case. There are many websites that help people find quality places to stay for free. Couchsurfing is currently the most popular website. On this website people from all over the world offer to have you stay with them when you visit there city. Before you stay with them you can see what other people who have stayed with them have said about their stay. Some people worry about safety issues, but couchsuring.org does everything they can do to insure peoples safety. Furthermore, I have couchsurfed in many different countries and have always had amazing experiences and made great friends. You can stay with both men and women, old and young, rich and poor – but no matter where you go, it is FREE!

Integrated Nutrition – Facts and Myths

As any one with a passing interest in nutrition and an internet connection must know by now, a vast number of spurious claims are being made for a wide variety of ‘miracle foods’.

The açaí fruit, for example, can reverse diabetes (despite being 32% fat) and other chronic illnesses. It can also expand the size of your penis and increase your sexual virility (if you are male). In addition this fat-heavy fruit promotes weight loss (without gender bias)… among numerous other attributes. Wow!

Incredible claims like these makes the idea that certain foods have healing properties and can be used to treat disease highly controversial. Though most of us accept that the Western diet is unhealthy, there is deep scepticism about whether certain foods can be used for healing.

Nutrition as therapy

This scepticism may be well-founded. The evidence that nutrition can be effective in place of conventional medical therapies is patchy at best.

Of course the lack of evidence could be due to a lack of scientific enquiry. There is little money to be made by using food as medicine, so there is little incentive to carry out studies. Big Pharma naturally prefers to keep pushing pills.

However, you have probably noticed that medicinal claims made about particular foods are often couched in terms that do not make a definitive claim… food X is ‘thought to be’ helpful in treating a condition Y… a low intake of vitamin B ‘could be ‘ linked to depression.

Modern rules and regulations concerning food and medicines make this kind of language necessary. Nevertheless, it is obvious that these kinds of claims are not supported by the hard evidence you would expect from a clinical drug trial.

Indeed, eschewing conventional medical treatments in favour of nutritional and other alternative options can prove fatal. For example, when Steve Jobs, the founder of Apple, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2003, he spent nine months exploring alternative therapies before submitting to conventional surgery by which time his cancer had metastasised with fatal results.

Venice, Italy – Tour of Venice

Venice is the greatest architectural repository in the world. All six sestiere of the city contain palaces and churches in the three most impressive styles Europe has produced: Gothic, Renaissance and the baroque. What makes Venice even more remarkable is just how many of these buildings there are. Palaces are crammed against each other and churches appear around every corner. However, Venice is also a city of squares (campI) which means that buildings are displayed to best effect in a series of leafy outdoor “rooms” that crop up one after the other. There are no long roads in Venice unless you count the Canal Grande, the city’s high street, but even that curves like a snake so that new vistas are continually revealed. The canals of Venice divide the city into many manageable chunks and turn what might otherwise be a narrow dark alleyway into a luminous border down which float shiny black gondolas full of camera- wielding tourists.

The city of Venice occupies a special place in history. It was the first great republic since Rome. It had an elected head of state (il Doge) and an insatiable appetite for both making money and then spending it on ostentatious decoration. At its zenith, it had the most powerful navy in the world and a virtual monopoly on European trade with the Orient. As it declined, Venice became a byword for decadence, a city-state addicted to gambling, sex and intrigue. It was always stylish even if it wasn’t always beautiful. Nowadays, even the scruffiest campus is still distinctly and proudly Venetian. Its citizens remain in their hearts a truly independent people.

Special Pregnancies and Additional Nutritional Needs

Having a baby is a special event in a woman’s life and requires her to take extra care of herself. Her calories intake will increase, although not as much as some women may think, and her protein needs will also be higher to support her body and her growing baby. But, when a woman is carrying twins or even triplets it becomes even more important for her to take good care of herself. There are two types of twins: monozygotic and dyzygotic, more commonly referred to as identical and fraternal twins, respectively.

Identical twins occur when a single egg splits immediately after fertilization and develops into two individual fetuses. They will share a placenta and amniotic sac and are genetically identical to one another. Fraternal twins start as two eggs, fertilized by two sperm and have their own placenta and amniotic sac. These twins are not always of the same sex, and they may not even look alike – genetically they are no more alike than other siblings who are born to the same mother and father.

Michelle has taken a home pregnancy test which is surprisingly positive. She is shocked because she is older and her menstrual cycle has been shockingly erratic lately. Convinced that the test is wrong, she laughingly calls her doctor and tells him what is going on. She is given a blood test and a physical exam, which not only confirms the pregnancy but raises additional questions, including why her hormone levels are elevated so high. An ultrasound shows that she is in fact pregnant but that there are two fetuses in her uterus.

Michelle’s is considered to be a high risk pregnancy for several reasons: first, she is older than the average mother, which puts her at risk for additional pregnancy-related conditions as well as putting her babies at risk for a number of conditions as well. The most common of these conditions in older mothers is Down’s syndrome.

Second, because she is carrying twins, Michelle is at a higher risk for complications. Finally, Michelle’s previous pregnancies were not problem-free, with one resulting in preterm birth and both being marred by gestational diabetes. To make sure that both she and her unborn babies are kept as healthy as possible, Michelle will have to have more frequent health checkups with an obstetrician than she would if she were only carrying one baby. In addition, she will have more frequent ultrasounds to make sure that both twins are developing equally and normally. She may have to come to the doctor every other week starting in the second trimester (months four-six) and then once a week in the third trimester (the seventh month to birth). Twins often come earlier than single births, another factor that she will have to be watched for.

Adverse Credit Mortgage

Following on from the previous articles, (parts 1,2 & 3) which explained what a bad credit mortgage is, how bad credit may come about and how lenders may view your bad credit and the impact bad credit can have on a mortgage application, we are now going to look at how the ‘credit crunch’ has effected bad credit mortgage products. Whilst this is very complicated (I promise to keep it as jargon free and none technical as possible) we are going to look at an overview of how the credit crunch has effected the actual criteria of mortgage products in the sub prime market, what do we mean?

Well to start with the lending criteria for mortgage products has become more stringent

For example

Lets say a mortgage product 12 months ago would allow you to borrow 90% of the purchase price and allow 1 missed mortgage payment, a total of £5,000 CCJ’s and would not take defaults into account, a comparable mortgage product today which would allow the same adverse credit would probably restrict you to 85% of the property value, which means you need extra deposit, this also means less risk for the lender.

This has primarily come about due he difficulties lenders face raising capital for mortgage funds (a direct result of the global ‘credit crunch’), the majority of lenders raise mortgage funds from the wholesale money markets at the LIBOR rate (London Inter Bank Offered Rate), LIBOR is the rate of interest banks lend money to each other, LIBOR is effected by global markets and obviously, the more it costs a lending institution to raise funds, the more it will cost you to purchase which can effectively price the product out of the market, the lenders need to protect themselves and not open themselves up for mortgage products to fail is a pretty good way of doing just that, so they have tended to steer clear of high risk products (such as 100% or 95% mortgages) another way lenders protect themselves is to tighten up the lending criteria so they get, for want of a better word, a better class of bad credit clients or clients who are less of a risk, they also reduce the loan to value available, decrease their equity stake in a property (85% loan opposed to a 90% loan) there are other factors but we are not going to get technical remember.

Lenders which have not been hit quite so hard tend be ones that do not rely on funds from the wholesale money markets, this is typically called ‘balance sheet lending’ which means they use their own funds and lend their own money, they work of their own ‘balance sheet’ to determine what funds they have for mortgage purposes, speaking in very general terms, the more funds they have available on their books, the better and more diverse the mortgage products will be as they have more to speculate (that’s it for money markets and balance sheets, we are trying to keep this jargon free).

To sum up, the UK mortgage market has seen a lot of changes recently and the sub prime or bad credit market has been hit hard – but the question is – do you think you should bother applying for a mortgage with bad credit? If you ask me I would have to say yes, there are still some good products out there and interest rates should be a little more stable in 2008 which is good news for everyone, and in many respects the tightening criteria just means mortgages that are approved are a more “solid” investment for both the lender and the borrower so everyone benefits.

I hope these articles have helped you understand a little more about the processes of apply for a mortgage with bad credit and the effects bad credit has on the mortgage products available and how that might effect what is available to you. The bottom line is no two circumstances are different and there are literally thousands of products available and as the old saying goes, if you don’t ask you don’t get so if you seriously want to know if you can get a mortgage or remortgage for that matter just make sure you speak to someone who knows the market, what’s the worst they can say?