Dhaka, Sept 24 (UNB) – World leaders have adopted a high-level United Nations political declaration on universal health coverage (UHC), the “most comprehensive set of health commitments” ever adopted at this level.
“This declaration represents a landmark for global health and development,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General at WHO.
The WHO DG said the world has 11 years left to make good on its sustainable development goals. “Universal health coverage is the key to ensuring that happens.”
He said universal health coverage is a political choice. “World leaders have signaled their readiness to make that choice. I congratulate them.”
The declaration came on Monday, the day after the World Health Organization (WHO) and partners flagged the need to double health coverage between now and 2030 or leave up to 5 billion people unable to access healthcare, said the UN Information Center in Dhaka quoting the WHO.
In adopting the declaration, UN Member States have committed to advancing towards UHC by investing in four major areas around primary healthcare.
These include mechanisms to ensure no-one suffers financial hardship because they have had to pay for healthcare out of their own pockets and implementing high-impact health interventions to combat diseases and protect women’s and children’s health.
Besides, countries must strengthen health workforce and infrastructure and reinforce governance capacity. They will report back on their progress to the UN General Assembly in 2023.
“Now that the world has committed to health for all, it is time to get down to the hard work of turning those commitments into results,” said Melinda Gates, Co-Chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
“We all have a role to play. Donors and country governments need to move beyond business as usual to bolster the primary health care systems that address the vast majority of people’s needs over their lifetimes,” said Gates.
On Tuesday, WHO and 11 other multilateral organisations, which collectively channel one third of development assistance for health, launched their Global Action Plan for health and wellbeing for all.
The plan will ensure the 12 partners provide more streamlined support to countries to help deliver universal health coverage and achieve the health-related SDG targets.
Dhaka, Sept 24 (UNB) - Consuming unhealthy food, high in fat and sugar, may have negative long-term effects on spatial memory, a study conducted in rats suggests, reposts The Indian Express.
Spatial memory is responsible for the recording of information about one’s environment and spatial orientation.
The study, published in the journal Scientific Reports, investigated cognitive function in rats that alternated between a ‘cafeteria diet’ of foods high in fat and sugar — like pies, cake, biscuits and chips — and their regular, healthy diet.
Over a period of six weeks, the rats were fed junk food in intervals of either three, five, or seven consecutive days, separated by their healthy chow diet.
The researchers at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) in Australia found that the rats’ spatial memory recognition deteriorated in increments according to their pattern of access to junk food — the more days in a row they ate junk food, the worse their memory got.
“Anything over three days a week of eating badly impacted memory in these animals,” said Professor Margaret Morris from the UNSW School of Medical Sciences, and senior author of the study.
The researchers tested the rats’ spatial memory by first familiarising them with two objects.
They then repositioned one of the objects and monitored the rats’ ability to recognise a change in their environment.
A healthy animal, Morris explained, would be more likely to explore the object that had been moved.
“We all know that a healthy diet with minimal junk foods is good for our overall health and performance, but this paper shows that it is critical for optimal brain function as well,” she said.
Morris and her team previously showed diet-related changes in rats’ hippocampuses, which she explained as the part of the brain responsible for helping us find things and navigate spaces.
“This particular brain region is important in all of us. It’s also already known to be affected in humans by poor diet,” she said.
In addition to the reduced spatial memory recognition, the study also identified physical differences between rats who consumed the junk food on the three-day and five-day intervals.
The rats who were fed the cafeteria diet on the five-day schedule were considerably heavier, longer and had greater fat mass than those on the three-day schedule.
Their metabolic profile also bore a closer resemblance to those on the seven-day schedule than those on the three-day schedule.
The study adds to existing research on cognitive function and unhealthy diets — but it differs from the body of evidence in important ways.
Many existing studies test animals that have unrestrained access to junk food, which doesn’t resemble how junk food is consumed by humans.
“I think these kinds of experiments where animals have access only some of the time is a better model. I hope this paper starts to add to a more accurate idea of what happens when we eat unhealthily part of the time, not all of the time,” said lead author of the paper, Michael Kendig.
The researchers said that while the study produced important results, more research was needed before the findings could be translated to humans.
“It is notoriously difficult to do this kind of work in humans, due to ethical concerns,” Morris said.
Growing up in Chittagong, Cox’s Bazar has been one of those places where our family visited frequently. Jhaobon, Poushee, Dhanshiri were embedded in our everyday menu. However, as of recent, Cox’s Bazar has become a place of dishes beyond the regular maach bhaat.
Mermaid has become a must visit now due to the ambience their locations provide. Whether it’s their Beach and Eco Resort or their Cafés, they promise to provide top notch ambience and service. During my visit to Cox’s last week I finally managed to drop by two of their branches: Mermaid Café Chill n Grill in Kolatoli and Mermaid Beach Resort in Marine Drive Road.
My first visit was to the Beach Resort where a bunch of my friends and I decided to stay for the sunset (ditching Inani Beach). Upon entering, you’ll feel like it’s more of a forest in a secluded area compared to other restaurants in Kolatoli Road. The entire place is lit up by candles and lanterns giving you a cozy and romantic feeling. Once we reached the restaurant of the Resort, we were amazed at the view! It had props such as boats, a turtle cave, surfboards, swings and more. To top that off, you had a beach view which could be enjoyed sitting at their outside seating area.
Their menu consisted of various segments including seafood, duck, quail, vegetarian, beef, desserts and drinks. Since I already had my fair share of prawns, lobsters, and dried fish at the Bengali restaurants, I opted for a simple Margherita Pizza and a Grilled Chicken. My friend suggested that the Lemonade here is a must try so despite a hefty price, I chose to splurge on the drink too.
It took about 20 minutes for them to serve and I am still trying to get over how good the food tasted here. The Margherita pizza had both mozzarella and parmesan used in it giving it a very cheesy and nutty taste. The tomato base infused with olive oil went well with the cheese overall giving me a tangy taste. The crust was thick and yet the slight burns gave it a rustic taste. They had served chilli flakes, chilli and a garlic mustard sauce alongside the pizza and surprisingly, it was the kick of the mustard sauce that I found the best to go with the pizza.
As for the Grilled Chicken, it came with sautéed vegetables and a mashed potato. What brought a smile on my face was the vibrant color of the plate and the presentation. If more restaurant owners would step up their presentation game, customers would happily pay more for the dish. Coming back to the taste of the entire dish, the sautéed veggies might have been slightly overcooked but the star of the dish, the grilled chicken, definitely made up for it. It was charred perfectly yet had a sweet glazing and the chicken itself was very juicy. The mashed potato also had some mozzarella in it giving it a very creamy and rich texture. The lemonade was what you say “Simple er moddhe gorgeous”. With ice cubes made of the lemonade itself, the drink was really refreshing and the bamboo stick gave the drink a very nice touch. I returned home with a happy heart and stomach that day.
That very night we visited the Mermaid Café as it was close to our hotel and I was craving their Grilled Chicken again. We also ordered a Mushroom Soup and two lemonade. However, this time we were slightly bumped at the presentation. Gone were the vibrant plate and banana leaf. Served in white basic plates came the chicken, burnt vegetables, and weirdly presented mashed potato. In terms of taste, the chicken was definitely the same: succulent and smoky but the mashed potato had no creaminess or the use of any cheese. The Mushroom Soup was quite decent but I would have preferred it having more cream and the bread, toasted. The drinks were the same as of Beach Resort, so we were pleased with that. The ambience of Mermaid Café was quite nice at night with a candlelit setting. But they definitely have room for improvement in terms of cleanliness.
I don’t know how but the next day we wound up at Mermaid Café for a light snack. I decided to go back to ordering a Margherita and regretted it so bad! The pizza was nowhere close to the one I had at the Beach Resort; neither in terms of the look nor the taste. The dough was undercooked, the base under seasoned and the look sloppy.
While the prices are quite on the expensive side and the ++ doesn’t help the wallet either, I would highly recommend anyone visiting Cox’s Bazar to drop by Mermaid Beach Resort during evening. I know a lot of tourists choose to go to the Café instead of the Resort due to the location but in spite of having the same menu, Mermaid Beach Resort provides food and service which is a hundred times better. Honestly, I have never felt so at ease in any other restaurant of Bangladesh as I did here.
It’s very unlikely to order Indian food at Cox’s Bazar however, after my recent trip there, I choose to believe otherwise. In fact, it is widely believed that Cox’s Handi is far better than that of Dhaka’s thus, when a friend recommended me to visit Koyla near Laboni Beach for lunch, I jumped at the opportunity.
Koyla’s location is exactly next to the entrance of Laboni Beach yet despite being in such a prime location, they were quite empty at 12.30pm. They have rooftop, indoor, and outdoor seating space and since it was quite windy, we chose to sit outside. You’d require taking off your shoes to sit on their elevated garden seats. The waiters were quick to provide us with a menu and to our surprise, they had naan/paratha available on their menu. Why was it surprising for us? Because we had been on the hunt to find them at Cox’s but all the places had them available after 5pm only. We placed an order for Chicken Reshmi Butter Masala, Garlic Naan, Sweet Lassi, and a Lemonade.
The order arrived a little after 20 minutes but we were happy with the presentation. Not only was the food served in antiques, the Lassi arrived in a Matka (earthen pot). We were also served some salad and achaar as condiments. The Naan was buttery for sure but what upset me a little was its flakiness since I prefer them to be slightly plump. However, it was the succulent chicken that won me over. These bite sized creamy boneless chicken was unlike any reshmi chicken I’ve had. It was soft and melted in my mouth due to its proper marinating with curd. Reshmi Chicken tends to have a mild, sweet, and nutty taste and this dish delivered it all!
The Lassi was overpriced for what was offered. Of course, the presentation was a nice touch but in terms of taste, the Lassi was too thick to be consumed with a regular straw and there was nothing extraordinary about it either. The Lemonade was a much better choice compared to this Lassi as at least it was refreshing.
I am so glad that during this trip, I chose to be spontaneous with my picks of where to eat. Most tourists tend to stick to deshi food everyday (which is completely fine). However, it is about time we give a chance to the other cuisines this place has to offer. Koyla will definitely be a place I will make sure to visit every time I’m in Cox’s Bazar and you should make sure you do too. If not for their Indian food, you may give their Bangla food a try at least.
Dhaka, Sep 20, UNB -- Everyone dreams of a unique wedding to make their D-Day a memorable one. But German aerial artist Anna Traber took things to a whole new level after she tied the knot with her partner Sven Lier at a ceremony, literally hanging in the air! The usual venues like a church or a pristine beach or a scenic park were replaced with a crowded market area with curious onlookers snapping pictures of the unusual scene, reports The Indian Express
For her special day, the 33-year-old bride and groom were both suspended from a tightrope sitting together on a flower-covered swing. Even the registrar was lifted off the ground for more than 20 feet in the air. Yes, seated on a trapeze opposite the couple, the ritual was quite high on energy.
The one-of-a-kind ceremony began when father-of-the-bride Johann Traber, drove the duo over the thin cable on a motorcycle! And the registrar, Breisach’s mayor Oliver Rein (CDU) was driven by the bride’s brother Falko Traber on the tightrope on a motorbike as well, BiLD reported.
The wedding took place on a sunny Saturday afternoon in the market square of her hometown Breisach near Freiburg and drew a big crowd. Later, photos of the ceremony went viral online.