Category Archives: Issues

No amount of sugar can sweeten the truth – it’s ANTIBIOTICS that make us fat

Plus size girl cutting fat off
We can cut out sugar, starch or all of them – truth is, we’ll still be fat unless we cut out antibiotics

The truth is certainly that we’re all getting fat.

Two thirds of adults are already overweight or obese. So are one third of children.

Our couch potato lifestyle, junk food addiction and sugary drinks are to blame say the experts. We’re bringing this misery on ourselves.

The truth is equally that we never used to be like this. The Swinging England of the Sixties was stick thin by comparison. So were the Seventies, and the Eighties.

People slouched in front of the telly in those days too. And ate junk food. Wimpy hamburgers from Coventry Street in 1954. Pizza Hut from Islington in 1973.

And of course Coke from 1926, starting at Selfridges.

Uh huh.

The disastrous miracle

Looks like there’s more to the truth than meets the eye. Our Mums weren’t fat, so how come we are?  How come if we want to look slim, we have to be Photo-shopped that way?

Because if all the things that are supposed to make us fat were around all those years ago, why are we only ballooning up now? Our current epidemic of fatness only started in the late 90s, so what was different in the 40 years before?

Yes, well those were the days before factory farms were invented to feed the world’s exploding population. 2½ billion back then, versus 7½ billion now. Farmers needed a magic bullet or all of us would starve.

The miracle they chose was antibiotics.

First, antibiotics would keep animals healthy, all crowded together in the Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) needed to supply large numbers.

Second and more amazing, antibiotics would make them grow faster. Bulk up quicker, be ready for market sooner. From egg to roasting chicken in six weeks. From new born calf to Aberdeen Angus steak in 14 months.

Fatter and fatter

Though scientists had known about the growth phenomenon ever since antibiotics were discovered in 1948 – overnight they rocketed to became the ultimate growth booster. Round the world, antibiotics were shovelled into animal feedstuffs like there was no tomorrow.

Today, according to a government report, 240,000 tons of antibiotics a year are used on farms around the world. By 2030, that could nearly double.

An industrial volume so staggering that medics attribute it as the major cause of antibiotic resistance. The rise of superbugs – harmful and often lethal bacteria that have mutated to become immune to treatment by antibiotics.

Officially, antibiotics are therefore banned from animal feedstuffs as a growth booster – certainly throughout the EU. They’re still used to keep animals healthy though. Their daily dose is still administered – but not as food, as medicine.

And in the super-crowded, unhealthy slum conditions of CAFOs, antibiotics are essential to keeping them alive.

Fatter vegetarians too

It doesn’t stop there.

Manure from these animals is used to enrich soil and fertilise plant crops. It’s full of nutrients – and residual antibiotics. Because as part of nature’s life balance, most animals excrete 80% of what they eat – to become a food source for plants and other living things.

Which means animals are still EATING antibiotics anyway. Not added to food, but already in there – grown from the earth in the grass, straw, soya, maize and corn they’re fed.

And that means, you guessed it, they’re laced full of antibiotics when they’re sold and wind up on our supermarket shelves. Food that we will eat, charged with these same super growth boosters – more and more with every meal. Deliberate fat-makers we don’t even know we’re eating.

It’s not just in meat either.

The same animal fertiliser is ingested by plants of all kinds – grain crops, fruit and vegetables , fruit trees, everything. They’re full of antibiotics too.

So is our water. Antibiotics from manure leach into the soil and down to the water table. They’re in our streams and reservoirs, including the Thames.  Every turn of our kitchen taps is another partial dose.

Deliberately fatter, without our permission

And there’s the truth of it. Every meal we eat, every morsel, every bite – contains a residual dose of the most efficient growth booster in human history.

We’re getting fat because our bodies respond just the same way that animals’ do. We crave power foods because our hunger switch is always on. Our bodies never know when they’ve had enough. They even extract more food value than they should, absorbing more nutrients, accelerating the fattening process.

Thanks to antibiotics, we eat too much.

Can’t face the truth? Easier to live with than the mumbo-jumbo we’ve  been sold about diets all these years though, isn’t it? Which, it seems, is not exactly the truth either.

Besides, it means it’s not our fault we’re fat.

We’re the only ones who can fix it though. And it can be done. Simple physics. We’re eating too much, so we all have to eat less.

Not easy. To succeed takes hard work and will power.

And that’s no lie.

Picture Copyright: ximagination / 123RF Stock Photo

Originally posted 2017-03-10 15:05:22.

Why cultures that eat with their hands are more germ-safe than we are

Indian family eating
More to savour, more to enjoy – and ALWAYS washing hands before anything

Germ-safe and healthy, despite what you might think.

Because whenever did you hear of a norovirus outbreak in India? Or Morocco? Or Thailand? Or Indonesia?

Not very often, right?

Not that it doesn’t happen.

Delhi belly is a world famous killjoy. But not always caused by overpowering curry.

More frequently, it’s accepted as as a lapse in ritual.

Hand hygiene is a way of life

Because the unbreakable etiquette in all countries that eat food with their fingers is – to always wash your hands first.

Not exactly what we do is it?

Though our whole lifestyle often involves eating with our fingers – sandwiches, wraps, pizza, burgers – hardly ever do we remember to wash our hands at all. Always assuming we can find a place to wash them in the first place.

It’s not in our culture, it’s not in our lifestyle.

And thanks to messy eating options like Nando’s or Sticky Fingers, we even get it backwards. That hand basin in the middle of the restaurant is for after, not before. Sticky fingers, smeary mouth. Right in front of everybody.

Weird.

Which shows just how iffy our knife and fork thinking is.

How can they be safer to eat with, or keep germs away, when our hands might have gone a whole day without washing? Office, bus, taxi, tube – plenty of places to pick up bugs. And pick them up off the fork into our mouths as we eat.

Respect your body’s temple

In Muslim countries, wudu or washing hands is pious ritual, far more than hygienic necessity. Being clean of body and mind is essential in all things about life. Hindus call it abhisheka . Among Jews it is netilat yadayim. All of them remove germs.Ritual washing

Not so ourselves, with our cruise-ship virus, our Don’t-Wash-Hands-Disease, our norovirus.

Beyond good, basic hygiene there is nothing in our culture to require us to wash our hands before meals – or at any other time. Hard statistics bear this out:

Unthinkable in cultures that eat with their hands. Probably even sacrilegious. Which when you reflect on the philosophy of My Body is a Temple makes a whole lot of sense.

Much better than writhing in agony with tummy cramps, violent vomiting and unbearable dairrhoea.

And look at the feel-good  people get from eating with their fingers. All senses working together to enjoy – seeing, touching, tasting, smelling, and hearing the sounds inside your mouth reminding you this is fun.

Wash our hands and we can have fun too.

Without the all-too-often queasy feeling that all is not well.

Enjoy!

Picture Copyright: Copyright: szefei / 123RF Stock Photo and alefbet / 123RF Stock Photo

Originally posted 2017-02-01 15:25:30.

Stop workplace germs – and buy a whole new NHS (twice over)

Twin doctors
Double value. More time, more beds, better treatment – make workplace germs go away and NHS problems go away too

Relax, stop worrying. We really can have a whole new NHS twice over – just by eliminating workplace germs.

Big numbers?

Sure.

Which just shows you how much money leaks away when germs get the upper hand.

Get ready for some jaw-dropping math.

According to the NHS’s own figures, planned expenditure for 2016/17 is £120.611bn.  On top of which is the current deficit – a whopping £2.45 billion.

Black hole, about to go away

Put the two together, and you get £123.061 billion.

Double it, and that comes to £246.122 billion.

OK, so putting the NHS to one side for a moment, how about this?

The fact that being sick off work costs British employers a monumental £29 billion, according to business experts PWC.

And even worse, that “presenteeism” – when people are unwell but come to work anyway – costs TEN TIMES that – a mind-boggling £290 billion.

More than double present NHS bankroll needs – with around £44 billion in change – about what British businesses pay in corporation tax.

Uh huh.

Reaching for the impossible

So what kind of magic wand would it take to disappear Britain’s combined off sick and unwell at work costs? Impossible, right?

Not exactly.

Sure, it’s not just germs that make people take off sick – or struggle through the working day. There’s musculoskeletal problems, like back pain and neck ache. Stress, depression and mental anguish. All medical, but not germ-related.

But around 85% of us agree that the major cause of working life grief is minor ailments. Colds, flu, tummy bugs, that sort of thing.

And 85% of £290 billion is..?

You guessed it, £246 billion. The cost of launching a whole new NHS twice over – all caused by germs.

Which says, stop the germs – and we stop £246 billion every year going down the plughole.

Basically impossible, right?

WRONG!

All hyped up, safe and secure

By misting up workplaces daily with ionised hydrogen peroxide after staff have gone home – all viruses and bacteria are eliminated, oxidised to nothing.

Next morning, when staff come in, the whole place is sterile. To a Log-6 Sterility Assurance Level – 99.9999% germs gone.

Yeah OK, people bring in fresh germs with them. On their skin and clothing, from whatever they might have wrong with them – and their own personal germ cloud.

But the germ threshold is zero at start the day, so any cross-contamination is minimised. Fewer germs to catch, less chance of feeling off colour – productivity nudges closer to 100%.

Press button easy

And the miracle machine that does all this?

It’s not a miracle at all, it’s a Hypersteriliser. A wheelie-bin sized automatic unit that ensures maximum dispersal of safe, low concentration, germ-killing hydrogen peroxide – the same stuff our own bodies produce to fight infection.

And it spreads across all surfaces and behind them, into all cracks and crevices, and throughout all airspace. Actively forced there by electrostatic charge.

Contact time for destroying germs is only seconds, though dispersal does take time, depending on room size. Forty minutes usually, and you’re done. The whole place is sterile.

Clawing money back from germs

Which neatly plugs productivity losses caused by absenteeism and presenteeism together. Effectively releasing one-third more work capability without extra cost.

The trick now of course is to persuade employers to donate all this money to the NHS.

They can certainly afford it.

And with sick leave absences down by 85%, the demands on the system will be so much less too. Shorter waiting times in A&E. More beds available. Adequate time for intricate surgery. Generous time for recovery under care.

So if a staff member does go down with something, they’ll be treated quicker and back sooner.  And that goes for all the other ailments too. The musculoskeletal jobbies and that lot. Because we’re all of us susceptible.

Including that heavyweight MD with the bad back that puts her out of action three days in ten. There’s a whole new NHS waiting ready to look after her. In fact, two for the price of one.

And hello, hello, the doctor WILL see her now.

Picture Copyright: citalliance / 123RF Stock Photo

Originally posted 2017-01-30 16:53:06.

Why aren’t we warned that antibiotics can make us fat?

Doc holding ABX
Not the lifesavers we think they are – they’re why we’re fat, and why we’re going to die in twenty years’ time

We get warned about other issues.

About antibiotic resistance, for instance.

That bacteria are rapidly becoming immune to our cure-all wonder drugs.

That soon doctors will not be able to treat even everyday infections. Superbugs will have won the day and medicine will return to the Dark Ages.

An antibiotic apocalypse

Yes, very true. And it’s right that we’re warned. An “antibiotic apocalypse” as Dame Sally Davies, chief medical officer for England calls it. A threat on par with terrorism and climate change.

She’s not wrong. Except that alarm about antibiotics failure is the big stick medics are using to obtain funding to develop new ones.

Government money, that is. Drug companies won’t finance it themselves – there’s no money in it. Widespread resistance means new drugs must be used as little as possible. They’re kept for emergencies when the older drugs fail.

So the whole business of developing a new drug and bringing it to market as soon as possible no longer has legs. Bacteria can become resistant in as little as six months, and the whole investment is down the tubes.

So the idea is to push the scare tactic.

Shake the government tree for around £890 million of taxpayer’s money. An incentive for some developer to take a gamble on a new product with an unmet need. Basically a bribe.

Not going to happen, is it?

Too public, too obvious, and too fraught with failure.

The 240,000 tonne money maker

Besides, why should a drug company take risks on new products when they’re already making a fortune on the old ones?

No, no, not as medicines. As growth promoters in agriculture. Because since researchers first noticed it in the 1950s, antibiotics have become the most phenomenal growth boosters worldwide.

In the last twenty years particularly, antibiotics in animal feed have reached industrial levels. 240,000 tonnes currently and set to rise another 70% by 2030. Prompting the rise of the factory farm or Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO). Vital support for rocketing world population, which itself has risen threefold to 7½ billion.

Yeah, so new drugs? Forget it. Ker-chunk, ker-chunk factories are working flat out all they can to keep pace with demand for the old ones. Sorry, no time for research, too busy making money. 240,000 tonnes worth of it.

And why weren’t we warned? Because it had nothing to do with us? Has nobody noticed we’re getting fatter?

Yes, they have. And they’re all keeping schtum about why.

Super-duper growth boosters

You see, twenty years is the same time scale in which our horrendous obesity epidemic has reared up. Today, two thirds of adults are either overweight or obese –  so are a third of our kids.

And all of that time we’ve been eating from food sources deliberately laced with antibiotics to boost growth. From egg to roasting chicken in six weeks. From new born calf to Aberdeen Angus steak in 14 months.

On top of which manure from the same animals is used to enrich soil and boost plant growth. So that everything we eat, animal or vegetable, contains residual antibiotics. Every mouthful we take includes traces of the most successful growth booster of all time.

We ourselves are all eating antibiotic fatteners!

Uh huh. So why aren’t we warned?

Why aren’t we told that the reason we’re fat is not junk food, or sugary drinks, or a low exercise lifestyle?

Not natural gluttons

In thousands of years, the human body has regulated itself according to conditions. Wasting away in famine, yes. But seldom ballooning out in times of plenty. And certainly never in an epidemic like we have now.

So why aren’t we warned that just like animals, antibiotics send our food demands into overdrive? That they make appetites insatiable? And that just like animals, antibiotics make our systems absorb too much? Extracting too much nutrition and making too little waste?

We’re not naturally gluttons. Not naturally addicted to high octane, quick energy food and drink – which is what we’re accused of.

But that is what we have become. Our gut bacteria twisted by antibiotics into never being satisfied and always being hungry. Always on the lookout for a quick hit for our induced addiction.

Because pigging out on lettuce leaves will just not crack it. We’re strictly on the mainline stuff. Burgers, chips, kebabs, pizza, ice cream, chocolate, cake – all the good Mary Berry things. And all the no-nos on Jamie Oliver’s list.

Fat and fatter, that’s us.

Yet never once are we warned, despite the evidence on food farms worldwide. Though doctors already know that antibiotic medicines at a young age frequently trigger obesity by four or five.

We get blamed, it’s our fault. And our indulgent lifestyle that’s pushing us further into obesity. To the long-term killer consequences of diabetes, asthma, cancer and heart disease.

Thought antibiotics were lifesavers? We should have been warned. Made aware of a health hazard, just like cigarettes. With big bold death notices on the front of every box.

They might rescue us today – from a chest infection or surviving a heart transplant – if the bacteria don’t become resistant first.

Dead, or dying

But twenty years down the line we get the bill. A bulbous hunk of blubber on intravenous drips and breathing oxygen. Going down for the last time because of something we never knew was happening to us.

We never were – and we aren’t now.

Why aren’t we warned?

Picture Copyright: khamidulin / 123RF Stock Photo

Originally posted 2017-01-25 15:14:15.

Now antibiotics aren’t working so good, we’ve all got to be germ dodgers

Executive karate kick
Dodge them or catch them – germs are always everywhere, ready to take you down

That’s right. Germ dodgers, not germ catchers – the kind of people we are now.

Don’t believe it?

OK, off the top of your head, when was the last time you washed your hands?

Be honest, because it’s not a trick question. It might come as a shock if you’re out and about, like most of us are.

Once we get into the day, we’re all wrapped up in what we’re doing. So washing hands isn’t even on the radar – unless of course, we need the loo.

Which means it’s actually possible – as you sit down to a night out in a restaurant – that you haven’t hit soap and water since you left home this morning. Like all of us, busy, busy, busy. Unless our hands don’t LOOK clean, we don’t even think about it.

False security

Sure, we know about germs and things, but we’re not really too worried. Life around us is clean and hygienic most of the time. Fresh, drinkable water. Efficient sewerage. Rubbish regularly taken away. Homes spotless and hoovered once a week. What’s the problem?

Because even if we do come down with some bug, our support system is pretty amazing. Either the chemist can fix us up, or our GP can. Or if it’s serious, there’s A&E. They’ll give us the medicine and we’ll be hunky dory. Antibiotics – boom, what nasty bug?

Yes well, don’t count on it being like that for too much longer.

Antibiotics are rapidly passing their sell-by date and use-by date. A lot of the time they’re past their ineffective-by date as well.

Bacteria are smart, see? With billions and billions of years’ practice at surviving whatever happens to them. A magic pill to bring them down? Sooner or later, they’ll find a way round it. Develop an immunity. Show off their antimicrobial resistance – AMR.

Bye-bye wonder drugs

Exactly the situation that’s crept up on our medical profession, while we don’t even worry a dickie-bird.

It worries the hell out them though, right to the edges of panic.

Because if antibiotics stop working, modern medicine just grinds to a halt. Big operations become impossible – even routine starts looking dodgy.

So that right now, today, it’s possible you could die from a paper cut. Without the medics being able to do a thing to save you.

And it’s already happening.

Last week with all the hoo-hah, you may have missed the news item snuck in under everything else.

About a woman in her 70s who died from carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) – a bug resistant to ALL antibiotics, including carbapenem and colistin, our two super-drugs of last resort.

“… a bad infection from such bacteria can kill you no matter how rich or famous you are, what apps you have on your phone or social media sites you frequent, what kind of walls you build, how many nuclear weapons you have…”

Which is why we’ve got to start being germ dodgers instead of catchers. Our carefree lifestyle won’t let us get away with it any more.

Sloppy hygiene can kill

Make that careLESS lifestyle – with very sloppy hygiene. Because if antibiotics can’t be around to save us, the facts are frightening:

Get the picture?

Hand hygiene is our first line of defence.

But we live in a world surrounded by germs, which is how our hands get contaminated in the first place. They don’t LOOK dirty – but unless we’ve just washed them, they’re crawling with viruses and bacteria. From door handles, light switches, touchscreens, keys, money – just about everything there is in our lives.

Dodge for our lives

Except we can dodge them too – at least in the enclosed spaces where we live most of the time. And with temperatures hovering around freezing these days, that’s seriously good news.

Yes, we still need to wash our hands – because we keep touching stuff.

But just like some bacteria can resist ALL antibiotics, ionised hydrogen peroxide can destroy ALL bacteria. And all viruses, and all fungi, and all parasites.

Sprayed as mist from a machine called a Hypersteriliser, it penetrates everywhere. Offices, restaurants, classrooms and consulting rooms – oxidising all germs to nothing.

Give it 40 minutes and the place is sterile. No germs to catch, no illness to come down with. Clever dodgers, us – nothing can touch us.

Except, yes it can – as soon as we go outside again, we pick up more germs. Which makes it like brushing your teeth, ideally it gets done daily.

Dodge germs most of the time though, and most of the time you’re safe. Like not going looking for trouble, because for sure we’ll find it.

Meanwhile it’s up to the doctors and experts to come up with alternative recovery medicine if ever we do get sick. Vaccines yes, or maybe phages.

Let’s wish them luck. Who wants to stay indoors when skies are blue and the sun comes out , nudging temperatures into the 30s? Roll on summer!

Picture Copyright: slplondon / 123RF Stock Photo

Originally posted 2017-01-23 16:35:06.

Fat and forty? The food “Mickey Finns” that push us to obesity

Sad and overweight
Our overweight future – thanks to antibiotic Mickey Finn fat pills

One Big Mac won’t make you fat. But you can OD on them. Pushed by “Mickey Finns” that make your body always hungry.

You scoff and scoff like it’s going out of fashion. Too many calories – boom, you’re a porker.

Except it usually happens slower than that. And there’s not a hell of a lot you can do about it.

Chubby in childhood, the pounds keep piling on. Until one day, hello forty and size 16.

It’s the Mickey Finns, see?

Invisible fat pills

None of us realise we’re taking them. They’re slipped so quietly into every meal, not even doctors realise we’re on them. Every mouthful, another little dose. An unseen diet of the most efficient growth promoters on Earth.

Make no error – these are fat boosters, Big Time. Specially chosen because they bulk up bodies fast.

One, by triggering hunger pangs all the time. Two, by never letting the body decide when to stop. And three, by making the body absorb more nutrition than it’s meant to. Nowhere to go, so all that energy is stored as fat.

Nah, we’re talking rubbish, right? Nobody in their right mind would drip-feed growth boosters to the world at large. That would trigger an obesity epidemic.

Quiet please, epidemic in progress

Uh huh.

So would somebody please explain why two thirds of all adults are already seriously overweight or obese? And why one third of our kids are too?

Kinda looks like an epidemic, doesn’t it? Even our Chief Medical Officer Dame Sally Davies, says so – though she attributes it to sugar.

Sugar as a growth booster?

If it was, there’d be farmers shovelling it into livestock as fast as they could. All those mouths to feed, see? 2½ billion of us worldwide fifty years ago – 7½ billion of us now. And all farmed off the same land area, because the planet hasn’t got any bigger in that time.

But farmers aren’t shovelling sugar, are they? It never even occurs to them.

Tell you what they are shovelling though.

Wholesale growth boosters

Antibiotics – 240,000 tonnes of them worldwide.

Which if we’ve done our maths right, works out to around 10 grams each for every one of the 19 billion chickens, 1.4 billion cattle, 1 billion pigs and 1 billion sheep that currently are required to feed us.

And guess what?

Using antibiotics to boost growth at volumes like that started back in the 70s.

Back when factory farms first took off Big Time. Or Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) as the industry calls them. Where antibiotics aren’t just used as growth boosters, they’re vital to keeping animals alive in super-crowded and unhygienic living conditions.

Big money though.  From egg to roasting chicken in six weeks. From new born calf to Aberdeen Angus steak in 14 months. Jackpot!

Rise of Mickey Finns

70s, huh? When our current fat 40-year-olds  were a twinkle in their parents’ eye.

Back when baby illnesses started regularly getting treated by antibiotics. And when doctors first noticed that antibiotics given at two years old almost guaranteed overweight youngsters by five.  Even worse, when teenagers were prescribed antibiotics so often, they’d had them 17 times before they reached 20.

But how about all those animals chomping antibiotics?

Like everything else they eat, most of them get pooed out. 80% in fact, manure to enrich soil and fertilise plant crops. So it’s not just animals ingesting antibiotics, it’s plants too – fruit, cereals, grain crops, vegetables, you name it.

Animal feed crops too. So even though they get pulled off antibiotics before they’re sent to market, those animals are still noshing antibiotics with every meal. Right there in their feedstuff. Mickey Finns for animals.

Which means just about every food type in our supermarkets has antibiotic residues in it. Drip-drip growth boosters, the same as the animals get.  And just like them, we’re fattening up too.

But there’s a difference.

The Mickey Finn price tag

Animal lives are short, once they’re fat they get eaten.

Humans are there for the obesity long haul. For the overweight conditions that challenge muscles, joints and breathing.  For the type 2 diabetes. For the asthma, cancer and heart disease. All the joys that long term obesity brings.

Mickey Finns. And we thought they were Lifesavers.

Meanwhile all our heavyweight medics are running around, worrying about antibiotic resistance. Who cares if the drugs don’t work, they’re going to kill us anyway.

So how long before the penny drops and we dump them altogether?

Picture Copyright: poznyakov / 123RF Stock Photo

Originally posted 2017-01-06 15:38:27.

2017 bonus – productivity up a third with exactly the same staff

Revved-up team
When people feel well, they perform better. Help them perform all the time – you win, and so do they

Nothing to lose, you see. No coughs or colds. No sitting at a desk with a pounding headache. Productivity untouched.

All the hours you’re paying for at full strength. Easy peasy with staff revved up and going for it.

Nobody off sick while work takes a back seat.

Full performance

Nobody off-colour either. Going through the motions while they feel like death. Grumpy with customers, missing details, making mistakes but grimly determined.

No, no. None of that.

It’s your New Year’s present to them – and to yourself.

No more germs in the office.

No more picking up somebody else’s bug. No more sick days. No more off days. No more feeling less than 100%.

Up and ready, raring to go. Full of bounce and feeling good with it. On a high from being healthy and reacting to it. Ready to conquer the world.

That’s what you get when everyone’s on song. Maximum productivity, maximum efficiency, everyone motivated and WANTING to achieve – all 250 working days of the year.

Everyone worth every penny of their salary – and KNOWING they’re giving their best.

A little duty of care

And all it takes is a little extra attention. A little extra showing that their health is important – beyond cleaning the place every night, and keeping it neat and tidy. By getting rid of the germs that every workplace has – especially with lots of people all working together.

Yes, people DO get sick and need time off. Six days a year on average, according to the CIPD. And more often than not, from bugs picked up at work. Sore throat, sniffles, tummy problems – sometimes even more serious.

On top of that though, there’s all the days when people don’t feel well, but drag themselves into work anyway – what HR experts call presenteeism.

They might be there and committed, but their performance is hardly their best. How can it be, when everything is an effort, a challenge just to stay focused?

And what does that do to your business?

Not sick, not well either

According to a GCC report validated by the WHO, it affects 10 TIMES more than the standard 6 days off sick. A loss through under-powered performance of 60 days productivity – on top of the necessary absence. A total of 66 days that affects ALL OF US, not just the unlucky ones.

Which makes getting rid of germs a vital business necessity.

Around one-third of staff productivity is riding on it. Money that you’re already paying out, but getting nothing for. Cash that should be bank-rolling new projects and enabling new projects – instead of being wasted on cough, splutter, sneeze.

It’s so easily fixed too.

Every treatment of your workplace by a Hypersteriliser machine eliminates ALL viruses, bacteria, fungi and mould. First thing in the morning the place is sterile. Safe, secure and germ-free. All oxidised to nothing by hydrogen peroxide – the same stuff our own bodies produce naturally to fight germs.

Looking after the pennies

Oh sure, it’s an expense you don’t face at the moment. You could shove it aside and keep going as you always have. And keep paying for the 66 days of lost productivity every one of your staff is costing you – including yourself. It’s money you don’t see anyway, so what the heck?

Not a lot of sense to turning your back on it though, is there?

For not much more than you’re already paying for daily cleaning, you can have reliable workplace hygiene too. Be sure of full staff performance all the time. Get full value for money from every one of your high-powered team.

Plus the inevitable bonuses when everyone’s healthy and well. More smiles, more can-do, more attention to detail, more positive attitudes.

A lot of organisations would pay big money to achieve all of those. But you can do it with just the press of a button. The one on the Hypersteriliser that starts getting rid of germs.

The one that puts a whole new perspective on your all-up productivity.

Picture Copyright: iordani / 123RF Stock Photo

Originally posted 2017-01-03 15:44:10.

Wellness rebates keep yielding thousands, are you getting yours yet?

Exec in chair
Sitting pretty, free from germs – with all that money in the bank

Never heard of wellness rebates?

That’s the money a business gets back when staff are NOT  sick.

Not actual cash payments, but money in the bank. That big bulge, right there on your bottom line

Five grand per staff member per year, maybe even more.

Crazy not to claim it too – because all businesses can.

Easy peasy, just by pressing a button.

All those years of paying money for staff to be ill – not actually gone, but substantially reduced. Expenses most of us never even think about, usually just accepted as a cost of doing business.

Invisible costs cut to size

All staff get ill at some time, right? It’s a fact of life.

And when that happens, you keep paying for them – even though they’re not doing any work. Their desks are empty, their job is not done – while they’re at home in bed, feeling miserable.

£522 a year that’s costing you, according to the CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development). 6 days at £87 a day. That’s the median annual absence cost per employee in the private sector for 2016. It’s even more in the public sector – £835.

OK, so what do you do? Pull in temp staff to cover the gap, right? Without replacements there’s going to be holes. Which straight away doubles the sick cost to you – from £522 to £1,044.

You can see where this is going, can’t you?

Avoid staff going off sick, and you can save £1,044 per employee, per year.

15 staff  members passing a tummy bug around? That’s 15 times £1,044, right there. A grand total of £15,660 you’re out of pocket – paying for nothing, while staff stay home to get better.

But that’s not all.

The “presenteeism” problem

You know yourself there are times when you feel like death, but you HAVE to go to work anyway. Too much stuff to get done, or deadlines approaching. Or maybe you feel you’d better show your face – because if you don’t, there might not be a job to come back to.

OK, so you’re at work, head pounding or guts churning, but you’re going for it. Not exactly at 100%, are you? Taking longer to do stuff, not always noticing things, forgetting others, grumpy and difficult with everyone who tries to talk to you.

Uh huh. Your own experience tells you the truth of it.

You might be at your desk, but you’re under-performing. Which is how most of us are, 25% of the time. Grappling with asthma, backache, or twinges of IBS. Around 60 days a year that we’re not up to our best. What the HR people call “presenteeism” costs.

Which is TEN TIMES the days we booked off sick. And TEN TIMES the cost too – at £5,220.

Which, together with the cost of temp staff hauled in to cover – absenteeism plus presenteeism – comes to £6,264. Money you’re ALREADY PAYING OUT for one staff member per year.

And 15 staff members, because you’re all in the same office together? Do the math. That’s a whacking £93,960 – one heck of a bill to pay for basically nothing.

Getting your own back

OK, so what can you do about it? Plugging a leak like that could finance all kinds of things. Shouldn’t you be able to get some of that back?

Yes, there is. Which is what we mean by a wellness rebate. Recovering costs that are otherwise going down the drain.

Obviously you can’t recover all of it. Long term conditions like depression, COPD, or recurring migraines don’t go away – and accidents can make anybody under-powered.

But all of us are susceptible to germs – and all of us come down with some bug or other – usually when we least expect it.

That’s OK, as long as we isolate ourselves. Stay home and get better, without infecting anyone.

The trouble with germs is, they often incubate before we know they’re there. We can be carrying flu days before the first sneeze – or norovirus hours before the first violent upchuck.

Whoops, atchoo!

Meanwhile we’re contagious.

Everything we touch, everyone we talk to, can pick up whatever viruses or bacteria we have. Next thing, everyone is down with it. Bad news running a business that depends on human assets at full power all the time.

Which is where pressing the button comes in.

It’s the start button on a Hypersteriliser – a machine that destroys germs in enclosed workplaces by oxidising them with ionised hydrogen peroxide.

When staff go home, it mists up the entire place, reaching all surfaces and air spaces – even remote corners. Oxygen atoms clamp on to germs and rip them apart. In 40 minutes the whole place is sterile – to a Log 6 Sterility Assurance Level – 99.9999% elimination.

No viruses, no bacteria, no germs to make anyone sick. Everyone stays at 100% performance. And you’ve just saved yourself a massive chunk of £6,264 – or £93,960 if there’s 15 of you together in the office.

Not had a wellness rebate yet? Get on to your cleaning company and make waves. Or get a Hypersteriliser of your own.

At the rate you’re saving, it’ll pay for itself within weeks. Your staff will be bouncing around, full of the joys of spring. And you’ll be laughing all the way to the bank.

Picture Copyright: auremar / 123RF Stock Photo

Originally posted 2016-12-16 15:41:52.

Charge more for cleaning – make your clients rich

Show me the money
Charge your clients a few hundred more – and help them recover thousands

Yes of course, charge more.

Not just for the same thing though, obviously.

For extra added oomph.

The same top-level service you give at the moment. Plus the chance for your clients to claw back costs they’re maybe not even aware they’re paying.

£2,000 per employee per year – possibly 10 times that.

Value for money plus

Worth a bob or two if they’re going to recover that kind of money don’t you think? And as you’ll see, worth every penny.

Because you’re not just going to clean the place, you’re going to eliminate all the germs as well. Make your clients’ workplaces sterile – protecting staff, customers and suppliers from any kind of virus or bacteria. Genuinely worth it to charge more.

No, no – not with a deep clean. You’ve been that road before and it’s just hard work.

Yes, a deep clean is more than you usually do, but with lots of rubbing and scrubbing. It doesn’t really take out ALL germs though, does it? Despite the strong smell of bleach, there’s still germs lurking, waiting to come back. And if you haven’t experienced that, you’ve never dealt with norovirus.

Besides, with the best will in the world, rubbing and scrubbing cannot reach every single nook and cranny to be sure the place is safe. Nor does it touch the air, which is 80% of most room spaces. Plenty of germs floating around in it though, remember how you caught your last bout of flu?

Claw back big money

Should give you a clue of how your clients will recover big money though. And why  you can charge more.

Get rid of the germs and you instantly chop a whole load of absentee costs.

People might be off sick, but they’re still on the payroll, even if they don’t receive sick pay. And the hole they leave by their absence has to be paid for as well. Doubling up, or getting in temps, it all costs money. And EVERYBODY goes sick at least once a year.

But that’s not the half of it, as you’ll know from running your own business.

The big costs come with “presenteeism”. Unwell people who drag themselves into work anyway. All in their places, going through the motions – and feeling like the end of the world doing it.

Yeah? Not very productive, is it?

Like having a car that’s off tune. Twice as much fuel to do the same thing, but without any performance. No power, no acceleration, no going up hills. Better off in the garage until it gets fixed. An unreliable resource.

And just think of the costs.

Invisible losses

According to the CIPD  (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development), absenteeism averages at four days off work a year and costs an employer £522. Presenteeism is reckoned as costing 3 times that, bringing the total to £2,088 per employee per year.

OK, now getting rid of all germs is not going to turn things around completely. Accidents, backache and non-communicable illnesses like IBS account for a large chunk. But colds, flu and all kinds of tummy bugs are par for the course in most workplaces. Mostly accepted as that’s the way life is, you have to live with it.

Except take away the germs and they disappear. Personnel are less likely cross-infect each other. Less likely to get ill. Less likely to be half-well, pretending they’re at full power. Good reason to charge more.

Which suddenly relieves a whole load of productivity costs, doesn’t it?

Especially when the CIPD estimates are more modest than they might be. American experts put typical presenteeism “outages” at 57.5 days a year, almost 3 working months per employee per year. A heck of a whack to pay for something you’re not getting.

Thousands and THOUSANDS

Compare that with research by Oxford Economics that puts the cost of bringing a NEW employee up to speed from nothing at £30,000. That’s from zero productivity to “sort of” knowing the job in anywhere from 23 to 32 weeks. Not far off an experienced veteran, feeling like death, slogging away at 25% of normal capabilities, determined to shrug off a tummy bug.

Those aren’t the only costs either. How many mistakes does that same veteran make, not being able to concentrate properly? How many forgotten contacts? How many missed deadlines? How many cost issues could have been avoided by somebody fully alert and on the ball?

Big bucks, right? Money your clients are ALREADY LOSING, just by being normal. Thousands and thousands. More than off-setting the extra you might charge for getting rid of germs in the first place. And way more effective that just cleaning and making tidy.

So if not labour-intensive rubbing and scrubbing, how’s it done?

You’re going to love this.

Press the button

Just press a button.

Get yourself a Hypersteriliser machine, wheel it in, set the exposure time and as soon as your cleaning team has finished their regular work, hit start.

The place mists up with an ultra-fine spray of ionised hydrogen peroxide. So fine, it’s more gas than vapour – actually a gas plasma. The ionising makes it electrostatically charged – forcibly dispersing it in all directions, deep into cracks and crevices, hard up against all surfaces.

Underneath and behind everything too. The stuff permeates everywhere – that same charge reaching out and grabbing at viruses and bacteria like a magnet. Clamped on tight, oxygen atoms rip the germs’ cell structure to shreds. They are oxidised to nothing, eliminated, gone.

Forty minutes later and the place is sterile. No germs, no effort, no problem. Including the high-touch high-risk “fomite” areas that normal cleaning never reaches – keyboards, touch screens, light switches, lift buttons.

Charge more, it’s OK

Worth it to charge more for your range of services? On the cost recovery alone, how can your clients refuse? Thousands and thousands accepted as unavoidable till now, one of the overheads of doing business. An instant boost to their bottom line.

Yours too, for very little effort. All-automatic and push-button easy. A daily or weekly hygiene routine as essential as brushing your teeth. Good, steady, repeat business you can rely on.

Charge more? Sure, go ahead.

Picture Copyright: andreypopov / 123RF Stock Photo

Originally posted 2016-12-12 16:33:53.

Norovirus: how to stop repeat performances

Scared woman
Unless you get serious, norovirus will always be back – again and again

Bad enough the first time. Unexpected, unpleasant, exploding across everybody’s world. Last thing anyone wants is a repeat performance.

But that’s what we’re going to get with regular cleaning procedures.

The place will LOOK clean – even SMELL clean. But that horrible gut-wrenching nightmare will burst out again like nothing was ever done to stop it.

Because that’s what norovirus does.

A very efficient nasty

It’s how it evolved to survive. Deliberately exploding far and wide, spreading it’s noxious particles in all directions to be sure of finding a victim to infect. Or a place to lie in wait for one to come along.

Which means two things.

We have to be super-careful with washing hands and things we touch. It only takes 10 norovirus cells to infect us – collectively smaller than the POINT of a pin. Pick them up from a door handle, or a coin handed to us in change – next thing we chomp a sandwich… That’s how easily it goes.

We have to make sure that ALL traces of a norovirus hit are completely destroyed. OK, so somebody upchucked in the middle of the office carpet – and somebody else didn’t make it to the loo when the runs hit. Aside from the yuck factor, easy enough to clean up.

But less easy to be sure of removing all of it.

Because it’s so violent, tiny particles could wind up on the other side of the room from any vomit patches – 20 or 30 feet away. But who’s going to make sure that’s taken care of, rubbing and scrubbing with stinky bleach? Or will even think to go cleaning so far away?

Not so easily chuffed

OK, zap it with steam.

Iffy, if you think about it. To be sure of killing any germs, it has to be super-hot – and maintain contact for two minutes or more. Not something you can spray around an office full of computers – or anywhere with sensitive electrical equipment.

Not if you want to avoid a sodden mass of papers on every desk either. Besides, moisture is exactly what germs prefer to breed and grow. Repeat performances are almost inevitable.

Only one way to be safe. Ensure whatever treatment is used reaches EVERYWHERE. Norovirus is pernicious – leave any area untreated and it will find a way to hide there. Miss that place, and it will come back – guaranteed.

H2O2 or else

Which leaves only one option – ionised hydrogen peroxide. The same stuff that hospitals use to sterilise surgical instruments. They can’t afford to have a trace of a germ anywhere – neither can you. A repeat performance for your whole department? Disaster all over again – especially in profit figures.

Thing is though, that hospitals use thumping great machines costing a fortune that are often bolted to the floor. Not exactly practical for an ordinary workplace.

Ah yes, but a lightweight Hypersteriliser can get in there easy. And blitz the place sterile in under an hour.

Because ionising is the one way to get TOTAL dispersal. Every microscopic hydrogen peroxide particle is charged electrostatically with the same charge – repelling them from each other in all directions.

Ionising super performance

Not at all like spraying with an aerosol. The stuff is forced out to the limits it can reach, burrowing deep into and under things to try to get away from itself. Wherever norovirus might have gotten into, the hydrogen peroxide particles will shove their way in there as well. By sheer brute force.

It gets better. Because the electrostatic charge of each hydrogen peroxide particle is the opposite to the charge of each norovirus particle. Or any germ for that matter. So instead of repelling, these particles reach out and grab – hanging on like they’re superglued.

Plus the ionising produces a whole stack of other germ-fighters as well. So that hunter-killer pack of hydrogen peroxide also includes hydroxyl radicals, oxygen species, nitrogen species, ozone and ultraviolet. Between them they rip germ cells apart by shoving oxygen atoms at them with NO CHANCE OF SURVIVAL.

And there you have it.

No repeat performances. No more norovirus.

No anything else either.

And if you do it every day, or once a week at the least – fewer staff illnesses, fewer absences, fewer deadline over-runs, more money in the bank.

Job done!

Originally posted 2016-11-23 16:26:04.