Share – Cảnh báo ô nhiễm Hà Nội lên mức tím, những ai không nên ra đường — Ngon 24h

Trong nhiều ngày qua, Hà Nội thường xuyên đứng vị trí số 1 trong top các thành phố ô nhiễm nhất thế giới khi chỉ số AQI luôn mở mức xấp xỉ 200. Đến hôm nay (30/10), tình trạng ô nhiễm không khí tiếp tục gia tăng tại Hà Nội, chỉ số AQI đã chạm […]

via Cảnh báo ô nhiễm Hà Nội lên mức tím, những ai không nên ra đường — Ngon 24h

Trong nhiều ngày qua, Hà Nội thường xuyên đứng vị trí số 1 trong top các thành phố ô nhiễm nhất thế giới khi chỉ số AQI luôn mở mức xấp xỉ 200.

Đến hôm nay (30/10), tình trạng ô nhiễm không khí tiếp tục gia tăng tại Hà Nội, chỉ số AQI đã chạm mốc 224 ở thời điểm 10h (theo số liệu của trang Airvisual), lúc 6h sáng, chỉ số AQI là 289.

Cảnh báo ô nhiễm Hà Nội lên mức tím, những ai không nên ra đường - Ảnh 1.

Chỉ số AQI tại Hà Nội lúc 10h sáng nay. Nguồn: Airvisual

Tại địa điểm 556 Nguyễn Văn Cừ, Long Biên, Hà Nội, số liệu lúc 7h của CEM (Trung tâm quan trắc môi trường miền Bắc) cho thấy, chỉ số AQI lên mức 235, trước đó vào lúc 2-3h sáng, chỉ số này chạm mốc 266. Việc AQI tại Hà Nội vượt lên mức 266-289 là mốc cao nhất trong nhiều năm trở lại đây.

Theo tiêu chuẩn của Hoa Kỳ, chất lượng không khí được chia làm 5 mức, tức 0-100 là chất lượng không khí tốt và chấp nhận được. Từ 101 – 200 là kém, người dân nhóm nhạy cảm cần hạn chế ra ngoài. Chỉ số AQI từ 201 – 300 là thang màu tím, thuộc nhóm rất ô nhiễm.

Cảnh báo ô nhiễm Hà Nội lên mức tím, những ai không nên ra đường - Ảnh 2.

Chỉ số AQI tại Nguyễn Văn Cừ thời điểm lúc 7h. Nguồn: CEM

Với nhóm màu tím, là mức ảnh hưởng sức khoẻ đến tất cả người dân, khi ra đường cần đeo khẩu trang y tế chống được bụi mịn, không đạp xe đạp, trong đó nhóm nhạy cảm gồm trẻ em, người già, người mắc bệnh hô hấp, phụ nữ có thai cần tránh ra ngoài, trong khi ở thang AQI (151-200) chỉ yêu cầu nhóm này hạn chế ra ngoài.

TS Hoàng Dương Tùng, Chủ tịch Mạng lưới không khí sạch Việt Nam, nguyên Phó Tổng cục trưởng Tổng cục Môi trường, Bộ TN&MT cho biết, khi nói đến chất lượng không khí, người ta quan tâm hàng đầu đến bụi mịn (PM2.5). Đây là những hạt bụi siêu nhỏ, có kích cỡ nhỏ hơn 1/30 sợi tóc, có thể theo đường thở vào cơ thể và ảnh hưởng trực tiếp đến sức khoẻ.

Về nguyên nhân hình thành bụi mịn, TS Tùng cho biết có tới 60-70% do các phương tiện giao thông, còn lại do quản lý các công trình xây dựng không tốt, bụi từ các nơi sản xuất xi măng, sắt thép, hoá chất ở các tỉnh bay về Hà Nội, bụi mịn cũng hình thành do đốt rơm rạ, đốt rác.

Về nguy cơ ảnh hưởng sức khoẻ, PGS.TS Vũ Văn Giáp, Tổng thư ký Hội Hô hấp Việt Nam, Phó giám đốc Trung tâm Hô hấp, BV Bạch Mai cho biết, ô nhiễm không khí được coi là kẻ giết người thầm lặng.

Cảnh báo ô nhiễm Hà Nội lên mức tím, những ai không nên ra đường - Ảnh 3.

Trong 2 ngày qua, tại nhiều thời điểm, chất lượng không khí của Hà Nội đã chạm đến ngưỡng màu tím, ảnh hưởng sức khoẻ tất cả người dân. Nguồn: Air-quality

Theo WHO, ước tính khoảng 30% các trường hợp tử vong do ung thư phổi có liên quan đến ô nhiễm không khí, tỉ lệ này ở bệnh đột quỵ chiếm khoảng 25%.

Riêng đối với bệnh lý hô hấp, các đối tượng bị ảnh hưởng sẽ nhiều hơn rất nhiều, ước tính khoảng 43% các trường hợp tử vong do các bệnh lý hô hấp có liên quan đến ô nhiễm không khí.

Trong đó, bụi siêu mịn PM2.5 khi hít vào phổi sẽ đi theo đường máu đến các cơ quan trong cơ thể và gây ra phản ứng viêm và có thể gây bệnh ở nhiều cơ quan khác nhau.

Đối tượng chịu tác động đầu tiên khi chất lượng không khí kém là những bệnh nhân có sẵn bệnh lý về hô hấp. Người bệnh sẽ thấy khó thở nhiều hơn, ho nhiều hơn, kèm theo tức nặng ngực và các dấu hiệu của đợt cấp sẽ xuất hiện.

Các nghiên cứu cho thấy ở những thời điểm thời tiết khắc nghiệt hoặc có ô nhiễm không khí cao thì tần suất bệnh nhân nhâp viện do các căn nguyên về hô hấp và tim mạch tăng cao hơn.

“Do vậy chúng tôi khuyến cáo những người đã mắc bệnh về hô hấp không nên ra ngoài khi không có việc thật sự cần thiết trong những thời điểm không khí bị ô nhiễm nặng”, PGS Giáp khuyến cáo.

Với bệnh nhân hen và bệnh phổi tắc nghẽn mạn tính cần phải tuân thủ và duy trì thuốc hàng ngày theo chỉ định của bác sĩ. Khi có các dấu hiệu hoặc triệu chứng khó chịu, khó thở cần phải tăng liều thuốc giãn phế quản theo hướng dẫn của bác sĩ. Nếu bệnh nhân vẫn khó thở, không thể tự kiểm soát được thì cần liên lạc với bác sĩ điều trị, bác sĩ gia đình hoặc cơ sở y tế để được hỗ trợ.

Trong những ngày ô nhiễm không khí, các chuyên gia khuyến cáo, người dân không nên đeo khẩu trang vải, khẩu trang y tế thông thường do những sản phẩm này chỉ ngăn được bụi thô, nên dùng khẩu trang có kết cấu lọc được bụi mịn.

Theo Thúy Hạnh – Vietnamnet

Share – Mát trời làm ngay ếch chiên tỏi ớt thật lạ miệng cho bữa tối — Ngon 24h

Bạn cần chuẩn bị những nguyên liệu sau cho món ếch chiên tỏi ớt: 500g thịt ếch 3 thìa canh ớt bột 3 thìa canh bột năng Một ít muối, rượu nấu ăn, bột ngũ vị hương Ớt xào 1 củ tỏi băm nhỏ, 1 cây hành lá thái nhỏ, dầu ăn. Cách làm: Ếch […]

via Mát trời làm ngay ếch chiên tỏi ớt thật lạ miệng cho bữa tối — Ngon 24h

Bạn cần chuẩn bị những nguyên liệu sau cho món ếch chiên tỏi ớt:

500g thịt ếch

3 thìa canh ớt bột

3 thìa canh bột năng

Một ít muối, rượu nấu ăn, bột ngũ vị hương

Ớt xào

1 củ tỏi băm nhỏ, 1 cây hành lá thái nhỏ, dầu ăn.

Cách làm:

Ếch rửa sạch, chặt miếng vừa ăn. Cho ếch vào bát, thêm một ít ngũ vị hương, muối và rượu nấu ăn vào trộn đều. Ướp trong khoảng 10 phút sau đó để phần nước sau khi ướp đi, thêm bột năng vào trộn chung.

Mát trời làm ngay ếch chiên tỏi ớt thật lạ miệng cho bữa tối - Ảnh 1.

Đun nóng dầu ăn trong chảo, cho ếch vào chiên cho tới khi chín thì vớt ra đĩa.

Mát trời làm ngay ếch chiên tỏi ớt thật lạ miệng cho bữa tối - Ảnh 2.

Để lại một ít dầu ăn trong chảo, cho tỏi băm và ớt xào vào xào thơm. Đổ ếch đã chiên vào, thêm chút muối vào cho vừa ăn.

Mát trời làm ngay ếch chiên tỏi ớt thật lạ miệng cho bữa tối - Ảnh 3.

Thêm ớt bột và hành lá thái nhỏ vào đảo đều rồi tắt bếp.

Mát trời làm ngay ếch chiên tỏi ớt thật lạ miệng cho bữa tối - Ảnh 4.

Thành phẩm:

Thịt ếch là một trong những món ăn chứa nhiều protein, khoáng chất và các nguyên tố vi lượng. Tuy có vị ngọt nhưng tính hàn nên khi chế biến thịt ếch nấu theo kiểu chiên với tỏi ớt rất có tác dụng cân bằng. Món ếch chiên tỏi ớt này đặc biệt ngon khi ăn vào những ngày trời chuyển mùa thu mát mẻ.

Mát trời làm ngay ếch chiên tỏi ớt thật lạ miệng cho bữa tối - Ảnh 5.

Theo douguo/aFamily

Share – [BDT2019] Chí Tôn Ca – Tất cả là Ta, Ta là tất cả — Triết Học Đường Phố 2.0

(1602 chữ, 6.5 phút đọc) Đức Chí Tôn đã chỉ dạy cho Arjuna về con đường thực hành Yoga: Giải thoát bản thân khỏi yêu và ghét, chế ngự các giác quan và bình thản thực hiện bổn phận không màng đến kết quả.

via [BDT2019] Chí Tôn Ca – Tất cả là Ta, Ta là tất cả — Triết Học Đường Phố 2.0

Có lẽ ai cũng từng nghe trích đoạn nổi tiếng trong cuốn Nhà Giả Kim của tác giả Paulo Coelho:

“Khi cậu quyết tâm muốn điều gì thì cả Vũ Trụ sẽ tác động để giúp cậu đạt được mục đích.”

Điều đó đã đúng với bạn chưa?

Có lẽ mỗi cá nhân sinh ra đều có một nhiệm vụ, vai trò nhất định trong Vũ Trụ này và chúng ta đều nhiệt huyết theo đuổi cái được gọi là: “Ta là ai? Ta muốn gì? Hạnh phúc là gì? Điều đó đáng giá bao nhiêu?” trong một khoảng thời gian nhất định. Bạn có từng như vậy, từng đấu tranh với định kiến, số đông xã hội, thậm chí gia đình để làm điều mình cho là đúng: Khi bắt đầu thì tràn trề nhiệt huyết, tự tin nhưng đến khi gặp khó khăn, thất bại thì sợ hãi, chênh vênh, đau khổ, hoài nghi nên tiếp tục hay từ bỏ? Và tự hỏi, Vũ Trụ ở đâu, tại sao người chưa tới, chưa tác động để hỗ trợ bạn. Thực ra Vũ Trụ đang hỏi bạn, bạn có thật sự muốn điều đó, bạn có quyết tâm không? Và từ bỏ hay tiếp tục chính là câu trả lời. Có người trả lời dứt khoát, cũng có người thì hoài nghi về điều đó nên Vũ Trụ phải nhiều lần, thông qua các phương thức hay tình huống khác nhau trong cuộc sống của bạn. Có lúc Vũ Trụ xuất hiện như một người bạn, có lúc lại giống một cuốn sách, thước phim, lúc khác lại giống đối thủ của bạn,… Vũ Trụ có thể là tất cả, xuất hiện bất kỳ đâu, kể cả là bạn, nên đừng tìm Vũ Trụ hãy lắng nghe và kết nối, Vũ Trụ sẽ hỗ trợ bạn, dẫn dắt bạn đến điều bạn cần để thực hiện điều bạn muốn. Và đó là một chặng đường dài, một hành trình không dễ dàng. Bạn có thể tìm được rất nhiều tác phẩm nói về hành trình đó, còn tôi tìm thấy bóng dáng, triết lý của tất cả các tác phẩm mà mình từng đọc về điều đó ở Chí Tôn Ca trong tập sử thi Mahabharata của Ấn Độ, được viết bởi nhiều người trong nhiều thế kỷ trước công nguyên.

Chí Tôn Ca kể về hành trình giác ngộ của Arjuna (hoàng tử của nhà Pandavas) về nhân sinh quan và tìm đến Chân ngã thông qua Yoga ngay trước khi cuộc chiến giữa năm anh em nhà Pandavas và một trăm anh em nhà Kauravas diễn ra dưới sự giảng dạy của Đức Chí Tôn (Krishna).

Khi Arjuna từ chối thực hiện bổn phận của mình là chiến đấu để giải quyết mâu thuẫn, xung đột dòng tộc vì lòng thương cảm (giác quan) trước cảnh nồi da nấu thịt. Arjuna giống như bất kỳ ai trong chúng ta khi đối diện với hành động và từ chối hành động vì rất nhiều lý do khác nhau. Đại đa số lý do đều có lý và hợp tình như Arjuna, nhưng sai về bản chất vận hành của Vũ Trụ, của quy luật tự nhiên như việc “ai sinh ra rồi cũng phải chết” (chương 2, câu 27), có xung đột mâu thuẫn ắt phải dùng chiến tranh để giải quyết, lý do có lẽ chỉ là để trốn tránh hành động, né tránh việc phải thực hiện bổn phận của mình.

Để giúp Arjuna thức tỉnh và thực hiện bổn phận của mình, Đức Chí Tôn đã chỉ dạy cho Arjuna về con đường thực hành Yoga: Giải thoát bản thân khỏi yêu và ghét, chế ngự các giác quan và bình thản thực hiện bổn phận không màng đến kết quả. Đó cũng chính là con đường tìm đến Chân ngã nội tâm là sự cao quý và thanh khiết của trí tuệ tâm linh.

Khi con người bị cuộc sống cuốn đi, chẳng khác nào con thiêu thân thấy ánh sáng chói lòa thì lao mình tới và bị thiêu rụi trở nên vô nghĩa, thất bại (chương 11, câu 26-28). Và con đường thực hành Yoga thực chất là quá trình kết nối với chính bản thân mình, thoát ra khỏi sự điều khiển của giác quan, quan sát chính nó, hiểu nó và chế ngự nó để tìm thấy sự bình yên. Khi không bị kích động bởi các giác quan sẽ không có những hành động thiếu kiểm soát và con người có thể đạt tới trạng thái:

“Người nào thấy được hạnh phúc, niềm vui và sự sảng khoái tinh thần bên trong chính mình và hướng khát vọng vào nội tại, người đó đích thị là nhà huyền học toàn thiện.” (chương 5, câu 24).

Hay giống như trong cuốn Đi tìm lẽ sống của Viktor E. Frankl viết:

“Người ta có thể lấy đi của một người mọi thứ, chỉ trừ một điều: sự tự do – sự tự do trong việc lựa chọn thái độ sống trong bất kỳ hoàn cảnh nào và sự tự do lựa chọn hướng đi của mình.”

Lựa chọn là con thiêu thân hay lựa chọn là nhà huyền học toàn thiện, điều đó phụ thuộc vào sự giác ngộ và thực hành Yoga của mỗi người.

Ngoài phương thức thực hành Yoga, Đức Chí Tôn giảng dạy cho Arjuna về thiên nhiên và những quy luật của nó, về thần thánh và ác quỷ, về cả đức tin và những biến thể của đức tin. Nhưng bạn ơi, hãy chú ý đến chương 7 và phân đoạn Đức Chí Tôn nói về linh hồn, thực sự là tuyệt vời. Khi Đức Chí Tôn bộc bạch hết cõi lòng mình với người học trò yêu quý Arjuna về Ngài – Đấng Tuyệt Đối: “Ta là khởi đầu và kết thúc của mọi vật chất và tinh thần ở thế giới này”, “Ta là vị của nước, là ánh sáng của mặt trời và mặt trăng…”, “dù là hiền tính, dục tính hay vô minh tính, cũng đều do năng lượng của Ta sinh ra. Ta là tất cả nhưng Ta độc lập với tất cả…”(chương 7)

Tôi cảm thấy Ngài là Ta, là chúng ta, là mọi vật và tất cả có phải là một, chỉ là một, Vũ Trụ này thực chất chỉ làm một thôi. Mọi thứ hòa vào và tan ra, hợp nhất nhưng lại độc lập với nhau. Chúng ta có thể thấy điều tương tự khi đọc đoạn Santiago biến thành gió trong Nhà giả kim, đó là lúc Santiago hiểu được ngôn ngữ của Vũ Trụ, hòa mình vào Vũ Trụ và trở thành một bản thể khác của Vũ Trụ, đó là gió. Hay chúng ta giống như những tế bào nhỏ trong một cơ thể lớn, khi tế bào này chết đi, tế bào khác được tái sinh, linh hồn lan tỏa khắp cơ thể và bất diệt, chỉ giống như con người mặc quần áo mới, bỏ quần áo cũ. Nghĩa là những điều linh hồn đã trải qua ở các cơ thể khác nhau (trong các thời gian khác nhau) sẽ còn mãi và nó được kể lại cho cơ thể mới bằng ngôn ngữ riêng, giống như hiện tượng Déjà vu mà chúng ta thường thấy. Điều này cũng được giải thích trong cuốn Hành trình của linh hồn về các kiếp sống và bản thể trải nghiệm.

Trên thực tế đã có nhiều thí nghiệm chứng minh không chỉ con người mới có sự giao tiếp và linh hồn. Như trong cuốn Thông điệp của nước của tác giả Masaru Emoto có chụp lại những bức ảnh của nước khi được tiếp xúc với các môi trường, lời nói, cách cư xử đối lập, chúng có những tinh thể đối lập, điều đó chứng tỏ nước có cảm xúc và linh hồn. Hay một ví dụ khác về một loạt thí nghiệm của Cleve Backster (chuyên gia phát hiện nói dối Cục tình báo Trung ương Mỹ – CIA) từ năm 1966 đã chứng tỏ thực vật có phản ứng cảm xúc mạnh mẽ trước các sự việc xảy ra xung quanh thông qua tần số do máy nói dối ghi lại, có khả năng ghi nhớ hay thưởng thức âm nhạc,…

Những điều này chứng tỏ mọi sinh vật trên trong Vũ Trụ đều có khả năng giao tiếp, kết nối, thậm chí chỉ là một mà thôi. Khi thông qua thực hành Yoga Đức Chi Tôn có thể nhìn thấy mọi kiếp luân hồi, hiển thị trong mọi hoàn cảnh và sinh vật khác nhau, nên Ngài có thể thông tuệ được bản chất của Vũ Trụ này, từ thần thánh đến quỷ quái, từ thiên nhiên đến con người, từ kiếp sống này đến kiếp sống kia, xuyên suốt nhiều thời đại khác nhau. Có lẽ Đức Chí Tôn cũng là đại diện cho một niềm tin, ý niệm tồn tại vĩnh cửu.

Rõ ràng, Chí Tôn Ca không chỉ là bài giảng mang màu sắc tôn giáo, đó là kim chỉ nang cho mọi kiếp sống trong Vũ Trụ này. Dù biết, đó là những triết lý cơ bản, sâu sắc và vĩnh cửu về sự sống, cái chết, linh hồn, về con người, thiên nhiên, Đấng Tối Cao, nhưng đến bây giờ tôi cũng chưa thể hiểu hết những tầng giá trị sâu của Chí Tôn Ca. Và Chí Tôn Ca xứng đáng là tác phẩm đọc lại nhiều lần trong tương lai và cho thế hệ sau.

Tác giả: Hải Yến

Ẩm thực – The Best Bar Soaps for Soft, Smooth Skin (and Hair!)

Humble bar soap is having its biggest moment in millennia. GQ’s Best Stuff tested all the small-batch stuff and big-name brands to find the most skin-friendly bricks.

The Best Bar Soaps for Soft Smooth Skin

The best bar soaps smell nice, clean great, and will transport you back to a simpler time—depending on your age, perhaps around middle school—before the humble bar was boxed out by body wash. Remember when we stocked up on body washes and liquid hand soap because the bar soaps of yore were built for cleaning skin, but not nourishing it? The liquid alternatives blended germ-fighting agents with ingredients that were actually healthy for your skin. And that drugstore bar used to dry your skin out like no other. Not any more. Bar soaps are back in a big way. They still clean your skin, but now they’re infused with oils, butters, and lotions to replace lost moisture and condition the skin.

When stored in properly ventilated conditions (and not in a tiny pool of water), a bar of soap can last a month or more. The best of them can also double as facial cleansers. And, let’s face it: It’s the original, the standard, the staple. It doesn’t spill. It packs easily. It doesn’t count as a liquid at TSA—travel hack!—and they’re easier to distribute than clumsy liquids products, and thus far more difficult to peddle away.

But like the best body washes, the best bar soaps double as aromatherapy, and they leave your skin feeling moisturized instead of petrified. They last long, and they get comments from your guests, like “Hey, what brand of soap do you use?” That’s not a weird question, nor an uncommon one, when you curate your bar soap as closely as you would, say, a signature scent. Here are our five current favorites, plus three other bar soaps we love, for good measure.

The Best Bar Soap to Give (or Get) as a Gift

Claus Porto “Voga” bar soap

Claus Porto’s thrice-milled soaps come in many sizes and scents, but we like “Voga” in the 12.4-oz. large bar size. It’ll last you months in the shower, or a year on your sink ledge. It’s a vegetable-shea butter blend, with light floral notes, and makes for a terrific gift since its packaging is as beautiful as the bar soap itself. The trick is convincing yourself or your giftee to actually unwrap it and dispose of the Portuguese-inspired design. It’s a bittersweet parting, since now you get the soft, nourishing, fragrant powers of Claus Porto.
Amazon
$27

Buy Now

The Best Bar Soap with Some Grit

Baxter of California body exfoliating bar

Don’t be embarrassed if you find yourself routinely huffing this body bar like some eighth grader sniffing glue. The cedarwood-oakmoss fragrance is full-stop incredible—this soap turns any shower into a rain-forest spa. Don’t use it on your face, though, since it’s packed with tiny bits of jojoba meal and crushed olive seed, which work to buff dead skin from your body as you scrub.
Baxter of California
$19

Buy Now

The Best Drugstore Bar Soap

Dove Men+Care body and face soap, Clean Comfort scent (6 pack)

Dove markets itself as “#1 Dermatologist Recommended.” And we’re happy to report that nearly every single dermatologist we’ve spoken with promotes Dove above other soapmakers. And, since the brand produces such large batches, you can get each lotion-packed bar for a buck and change. Add to that the comfort of using this bar soap on your face, and suddenly you’re saving on cleanser, too. Dove takes the crown when it comes to economy and utility.
Walmart
$7

Buy Now

The Best Bar Soap for Your Hair

By Humankind shampoo bar

Here’s an unusual one—a bar shampoo that gently works to nourish your hair all the way to the root, minimizing the need for conditioner. The thinking is that most liquid shampoos parch your hair and scalp, requiring conditioner to do the restoration work after the fact. The all-natural ingredients in these shampoo bars include oils of sunflower, coconut, and palm, plus a variety of essential oils, so it’s all nourishing, no drying. Plus, they eliminate the need for a plastic vessel, so they’re eco-friendly to boot.
By Humankind
$13

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The Best Bar Soap for Unifying Your Fragrance Entourage

Hawthorne custom-scent bar soap

After filling out a questionnaire about your personal habits, preferences, and predilections, Hawthorne will make you a customized scent. Their range is designed to suit different personality types, and they apply it to things like cologne, deodorant, and even bar soap. We’re big fans of having one signature scent across an entire grooming regimen, and Hawthorne makes that easy, accessible, and affordable. Plus, their scents smell damn good. Take the quiz now, and at least get the soap, if not everything else.
Hawthorne
$15

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Three More Bar Soaps We Like

Compagnie De Provence lavender bar soap (3 pack)

The world’s best soap comes from Provence. There’s no debating it. It’s also the region most famous for lavender fields. Compagnie De Provence combines oils of sweet almond, grape seed, and olive with notes of lavender in their soaps, and they’re triple milled because, well, nothing less is acceptable in Provence. It smells terrific, it softens the skin, and it gives you permission to say “oui oui, uh huh huh” over and over in the shower, since nobody is watching, except maybe your dog.
Walmart
$9

Buy Now

Hudson Made hand soap

Hudson packs a lineup of skin-softening and nourishing oils into this brick: olive, coconut, jojoba, hemp, tobacco, patchouli, cedar leaf, cedarwood, plus vitamin E, shea butter, and pumice. [Deep inhale.] That’s the kind of soap you want to use on your skin, regardless of how gritty you get during the day. And here’s an insider’s tip: it’s great on the feet, too. It exfoliates nicely, washing dead skin cells away as it fuels the live-and-well cells.
Amazon
$18

Buy Now

The Rich + Clean peppermint and charcoal soap

Charcoal has transcended “fad” status (we once named it the Ingredient of the Year for the GQ Grooming Awards). The charcoal in this soap soaks up all the gunk and toxins that have seeped into your skin. And Japanese peppermint tones your oil levels to prevent shine and breakouts without over-drying.
The Rich + Clean
$12

Buy Now

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Ẩm thực – 30 Shocking Secret Ingredients Hiding in Your Favorite Foods

For better or worse, we dug into nutritional labels and ingredient lists of the most popular foods.

30 Shocking Secret Ingredients Hiding in Your Favorite Foods

Nutritionists tell clients to read the nutrition labels and the ingredient lists for good reason: There’s usually a whole lot of junk listed out into words that are both hard to pronounce and spell. It’s a surefire way to know a food is packed with, well, more than what you bargained for. Here, we reviewed the ingredient lists of some of the most popular packaged and pre-made foods.

From crushed up, bugs to flame retardants (yes, really.), read up on 30 ingredients to look out for the next time you’re grocery shopping. Then, read up on the 23 Worst Food Additives in America to help you lose weight and kick processed foods for good.

1

Sprayed-On Viruses

Salami

It sounds gross, but the practice of spraying viruses on foods was approved in 2006. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had foods like salami, sausage, and other deli meats sprayed with bacteria-killing viruses.

2

Rodent Hairs

Cooking pastaShutterstock

The FDA’s Defect Levels Handbook (don’t read it if you don’t want to be grossed out) lists the “allowable limits” on natural or unavoidable defects in more than 100 popular foods. Macaroni and noodle products, for example, can contain an average of 4.5 rodent hairs (or more) for every 225 grams in six or more subsamples. While that’s not the average amount of insects or rodent hairs in these products, that number is what the FDA allows so there’s a chance you’re eating more than you realize.

3

High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)

Apple sauceShutterstock

Demonized HFCS is a not-so-natural sugar made from corn syrup and you don’t want to overdo it. The ingredient is linked to everything from type 2 diabetes and weight gain to metabolic syndrome. The European Union limits its use but in the States, you’ll still find it in everything from applesauce to soda and even ketchup.

4

Castoreum

Vanilla ice creamShutterstock

Although it’s known as a “natural” ingredient, castoreum is made from beavers’ castor sacs—aka their anal scent glands—and the last thing you’d expect in your dessert. The ingredient, while nauseating-sounding, is harmless but makes its way into many vanilla and raspberry-flavored desserts.

5

Propylene Glycol

Diet turkey hill light ice cream

Propylene glycol is an additive that is often used in acrylic architectural paints. In food, it’s used to help preserve moisture in brands such as Turkey Hill Vanilla Bean Light Recipe, and other diet ice creams to make them more “scoopable.”

6

Potassium Bromate

White flour and rolling pinShutterstock

Potassium bromate in flour allows bread to rise higher and it gives it a fluffier texture. The FDA allows the ingredient in foods, despite the Center for Science in the Public Interest petitioning a ban and Europe’s claims that it can cause cancer and be toxic if swallowed. Research from the Centre for Science and Environment suggests that potassium bromate is still found in Harvest Gold and Britannia bread, as well as Pizza Hut and Subway’s ready-to-eat pizza and burger buns—although it’s not listed on the label. Eek.

7

Butane (TBHQ)

Peanut butter cups candyShutterstock

TBHQ stands for tertiary butylhydroquinone (you know, one of those beware ingredients you can’t pronounce). It’s an additive used to prevent or delay oxidation in fish products, microwave popcorn, and chicken nuggets. It’s also in Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups and Crisco. Some research suggests that excess TBHQ can cause toxic effects on the immune system in kids.

8

Bisphenol A (BPA)

Canned soupShutterstock

BPA is a buzzed-about industrial chemical that’s added to many food and beverage containers—mostly cans and plastics. Some reports suggest it’s in more than 16,000 packaged products and 67 percent of canned food. Research finds that BPA can be a hormone disruptor, mimicking estrogen in the body.

9

Arsenic

brown riceShutterstock

Because the chemical element arsenic is present in soil and water, it can make its way into seemingly healthy foods like grains, including rice, fruits and fruit juices, and vegetables. However, the biggest source of arsenic toxicity in humans is from contaminated water from geological sources.

While long-term exposure to inorganic arsenic is linked to a higher risk of skin, bladder, and lung cancers, don’t freak out just yet. Most of us drink clean, filtered water—and that’s the number one way to avoid exposure. That said, one study of 142 pieces of cooked chicken and 116 pieces of raw chicken from a grocery store found that 78 cooked and 65 raw samples contained arsenic.

10

Carrageenan

Almond milkShutterstock

Carrageenan is an additive that’s used to thicken and preserve food and drinks. While it might come from a something healthy (seaweed), there’s some evidence that links it to inflammation and GI issues (think: bloating or IBS) and food allergies. You’ll find it in some nut milk, puddingswhipped cream, and Nesquik drinks.

11

Sodium Aluminum Phosphate

Celebration cupcakesShutterstock

Popular cookie and cake mixes contain this preservative that’s used as a “stabilizer” in foods. The problem is you’ll also find the ingredient on the Environmental Working Group’s food additive watch list.

12

L-Cysteine

It might be an amino acid, but if you notice L-Cysteine on the ingredient list of your favorite bread or bagels, some reports suggest it’s sourced from feathers and human hair. Einstein Bros. and Dunkin’ Donuts have both confirmed using L. Cysteine in all of their bagels.

13

BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene)

Bowl potato chipsShutterstock

BHT can be considered BHA’s (evil) cousin since they both have the same purpose: to keep food fresh. But BHT is also a human skin and eye irritant. In animal studies, rats fed high doses of BHT showed increases in cholesterol, too.

14

Azodicarbonamide

Loaf of bread on kitchen counter in plastic bagShutterstock

Used as a whitening agent in cereal flour and as a “dough conditioner” in bread, the FDA considers azodicarbonamide a “safe” additive. But the European Union, which banned the use of ADA (as it’s also known), thinks otherwise.

15

Powdered Cellulose

Coffee creamerShutterstock

Powdered cellulose—made from dried wood pulp—is approved by the FDA and is generally recognized as safe (GRAS). It’s used in foods like grated cheesecoffee creamer, and frozen Lean Cuisine to absorb water and other liquids. The problem is it’s non-digestible, so many people think it has no place in our food.

16

Monosodium Glutamate (MSG)

Mac and cheeseShutterstock

The FDA generally recognizes MSG, a chemical compound that amps up the flavor, as safe. But they’ve also received multiple complaints—think headaches and nausea—about the ingredient over the years. Chinese food isn’t the only culprit either. Other packaged foods like Doritos contain MSG as do popular boxed meals, like Kraft Mac and Cheese.

17

Maltodextrin

Frozen dinnerShutterstock

Listed as GRAS by the FDA, maltodextrin is a powder that can improve a food’s texture, taste, or shelf life. It’s found in frozen foods (including the Lean Cuisine Spinach, Artichoke & Chicken Panini), but some research links the ingredient with changes in the gut and inflammation.

18

BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole)

BHA is a synthetic antioxidant that keeps packaged foods from going rancid. You’ll find it in potato chips and some vegetable oils as well as both Chex Mix and Totino’s Pizza Rolls. And before you think the word “antioxidant” makes it healthy, BHA has been shown to be carcinogenic in animals. Plus, it’s banned in other countries.

19

Titanium Dioxide

 

This additive is a preservative to keep food fresh and prevent a product from “clumping.” Some research finds that nanoparticles of titanium dioxide are a “possibly carcinogenic to humans.” It’s in both Lil Debbie Chocolate Cupcakes and Totino’s Pizza Rolls.

20

Sodium Nitrate

Turkey slices cheeseShutterstock

You’ll find this processed meat preservative in foods like Oscar Meyer salami and cold cuts. While it keeps cured meats fresh, some research links high amounts to colon cancer—and processed meats—in general to a higher risk of cardiovascular disease and other health issues.

21

Soybean Oil

Bowl of cheez itsShutterstock

This popular cooking oil—sometimes thought to be a better alternative to saturated fats—can be found in coffee creamers, some packaged wraps and flatbreads, and Cheez Its ingredients. But some research has linked it to weight gain and inflammation.

22

Yellow 5 and 6

Jelly beansPixabay

Banned in countries like Norway and Austria, these food dyes have been linked to allergies as well as neurochemical and behavioral changes, particularly in animals. The FDA requires food companies to label products that have them so that people who are ‘sensitive’ to the dyes can avoid consuming them. Best to skip Kraft Mac and Cheesejelly beans, and caramel syrup if you’re worried.

23

Cochineal extract

Starbucks drinksCourtesy of Starbucks

This red pigment (also called carmine) is made from crushed up bugs used to be a staple of some Starbucks drinks. Lab tests suggest the ingredient is non-toxic. But some people have allergic reactions to it. The FDA requires products with this ingredient to include them in the label. You can still find it in foods like Yoplait yogurts.

24

Maggots

Shiitake mushroomsJoanna Kosinska/Unsplash

Another lovely standout from the FDA’s Defect Levels Handbook: Every 100 grams of drained, canned mushrooms and every 15 grams of dried mushrooms can have 20+ maggots. Yum.

25

Polysorbate 60

Polysorbate 60 is a thickening oil used to bulk up foods like pudding and gelatin desserts and keep sauces (think: chocolate or caramel) smooth. You can also find it in cosmetic products. The FDA describes it as “a mixture of polyoxyethylene ethers of mixed partial stearic and palmitic acid esters of sorbitol anhydrides and related compounds.” Just what you wanted to for dessert, right?

26

Sodium Benzoate

McDonald's Big MacCourtesy of McDonald’s

You’ll find this preservative in fast food staples such as McDonald’s “Big Mac” sauce and Taco Bell’s freezes. It’s sometimes added to foods to protect against bacteria, yeast, or mold growth and is GRAS in small amounts.

27

Aspartame

Whipped cream berriesShutterstock

This artificial, zero-calorie sweetener (aka NutraSweet and Equal) is one of the most popular ones on the market. You’ll find it in diet soda, sugar-free Cool Whipno-sugar-added bars, and sugarless gums. The problem is some research links aspartame intake to increased hunger levels and weight gain.

28

Phthalates

fast food hamburgerShutterstock

Used in food processing and packaging, phthalates can seep into your favorite foods, too. The ingredient has been called an endocrine disruptor because of its estrogen-mimicking activity in the body. Research also links it to both reproductive issues and birth defects. Your restaurant meals may be jammed with them. One study published in Environmental International found that people who eat out had35 percent higher phthalate levels than those who consumed home-cooked meals.

29

Red #40

mmsShutterstock

Found in candy, chocolate cake, cereals, pastries, fruit snacks, and more foods, Red #40 is one of the most widely-used food dye in the country.  It’s derived from petroleum and some research suggests the dye is “likely carcinogenic.”

30

Brominated Vegetable Oil (BVO)

Mountain dew sodacpaulfell/Shutterstock

It’s used to keep citrus flavorings from floating to the top of some sodas and sports drinks (Mountain Dew has BVO in it). This food additive, which contains bromine—an ingredient in flame retardants—is banned in both Europe and Japan.

By CASSIE SHORTSLEEVE

Full link: https://www.eatthis.com/food-additives-processed-foods/?utm_source=nsltr&utm_medium=email&utm_content=target-protein-powder&utm_campaign=etntNewsletter

Ẩm thực – Sold: Charles Dickens’s Liquor Log

Dickens spent the days before his death counting casks of whiskey.

Days before his death, Dickens' handwriting was still firm and clear.

ON JUNE 6, 1870, CHARLES Dickens strolled into the cellar of his country house, Gad’s Hill Place in Kent, and surveyed his liquor stores. The day before, wine merchants at Joseph Ellis & Sons had dropped off a cask of good sherry. If Dickens wanted whiskey, he could dig into stone jars of it, including some of the 30 “very fine” gallons that had been delivered the previous January.

But Dickens was expecting company—his daughters were coming to visit. So, as he often did when guests came to visit, the writer took stock of his intoxicants and recorded the inventory in a clear, firm hand in his household notebook. Three days later, after a sudden brain hemorrhage, Dickens was dead.

The notebook remained. Passed for years through the hands of various manuscript collectors, the yellowed notebook, bluish with Dickens’ spidery script, was auctioned off on September 24 by Sotheby’s, London. Selling for £11,875 or $14,641, it was one of many Dickens-related items auctioned off from the collection of Lawrence Drizen for more than two-million dollars.

“There’s a hugely passionate collector community for Dickens,” says Gabriel Heaton, a Specialist from Sotheby’s Books and Manuscripts Department. Those that participated in the auction had their pick of Dickens classics, including first editions of Great Expectations, which sold for $217,350, and A Christmas Carol, which sold for $116,438. But the humble household inventory had something these great works didn’t: It was one of the last things Dickens wrote.

Like many estate-owners of his time, Dickens maintained a hearty liquor cellar, which he tapped into to entertain the guests who frequented his country estate. He kept casks of sherry, pale and dark brandy, whiskey, and rum. His personal alcohol use “was pretty normal for the time,” says Heaton (the Victorians liked to drink). He didn’t keep gin, which was considered a drink of the poor.

Unlike other men of his class, who might have commissioned staff to track the daily ins and outs of cellar stock, at the end of his life, Dickens chose to attend to this household matter himself. “He was a man who was always full of energy,” Heaton says. Yet by June 1870, while Dickens was still hard at work on his last novel, the never-completed The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Dickens had begun to lose mobility. Unable to walk the grounds, his attention turned inward.

For Heaton, the creation of this painstaking household inventory is evidence that, faced with this declining mobility, Dickens focused on routine, and on daily matters of food, drink, and entertaining. “It’s a poignant record of the final days of one of the greatest writers in the language,” Heaton says.

By

Full link: https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/did-charles-dickens-like-drink?utm_source=Gastro+Obscura+Weekly+E-mail&utm_campaign=4cf3f4e442-GASTRO_EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_09_28&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_2418498528-4cf3f4e442-70327933&mc_cid=4cf3f4e442&mc_eid=df51e46713

Collection – A Little Reflection on Love and Hate

The Difficult Truth I See Reflected in the World These Days

There’s a level of consciousness that we desperately need to develop, to mature into. As humanity. As individuals. As societies and people. And yet it eludes us in these strange, troubled times. Somehow, we seem to slink deeper and deeper into the recesses of what Jung might have called the shadow, what Freud might have called pure id, what you and I might just call malignant narcissism. Isn’t it fair to say, these days, that hate, seems to be making a defiant comeback?

So rather than analyze it sociopolitically, economically, as I often do, I want to tell you a little bit of the story of my own journey of consciousness. You see, it would have been the most natural thing in the world for me to end up part of the tidal wave of hate engulfing the globe. After all — it’s vanguard is young men, of a certain kind.

Every now and then, I check the forums the bitter young men of the world rage in. You know the ones I’m talking about. Go ahead and emit a horrified laugh. Why do I do it? I’m not sure. It’s not just to gawk. A part of me, if I’m honest, feels horrified. But another part of me thinks — I’ve been close to that edge, that line, too.

I don’t know that I was ever so badly off as many of the young men — the boys, really — raging fatalistically there. But I do know that I’m a child of a forgotten holocaust. It’s scars cut jaggedly through every person who raised me. It lacerated every single life close to me with depression, trauma, grief, alienation. To escape it, my parents fled to a promised land.

A place which, the very day I arrived on its shores, seemed to hate me. As deep and true as the sun shines into the endless night. It hated me in a way that I couldn’t understand. I spent many, many years trying to grapple with it.It became a kind of curse I was desperate to dispel. Maybe this society would hate me less if I was stronger, I thought. But I stayed the sickly skinny kid, no matter how much iron I pushed. And I was hated all the same. Maybe it wouldn’t hate me if I was more accomplished, then. So by the age of 35 or so, I’d written my columns and books and began my appearances on the news and the radio. And yet I still felt that sense of hate, ripping through my life as an eclipse on a sunny day.

Now, you might ask: “where? how?” Ah, my friends. Hate doesn’t need to come to us in flamboyant ways. You don’t need much to know you’re hated. The poison can be transmitted with something as subtle as a word, a look, a glance. That might not make much sense to those with you with the now cliched “white privilege.” But when 75%, 80%, 90% of a kind of people seem to respond to you precisely the same way…with exactly the same level of contempt and indifference…not matter what you do…just for being who you are…you know, deep down, without a shadow of a doubt, that you are hated. You know it through endless little violences, tiny missiles of conflict and scorn that erode and corrode you, when they hit you a thousand times a day. Something endless in you knows when you are being annihilated.

And it bewildered me. It baffled me. Totally and absolutely. I could solve all the other problems in life — the equations, the theories, how to make money, how to build a career. But this feeling of being hated just for who I was? Nothing I did — nothing — took an iota of that hate away. I’d done all the things that I’d been taught — not just by my parents, but by the rules of the promised land. Work hard. Become someone. Then you’ll be worthy, at last. Of what? I never asked. Just not being hated for being at all — that was my only real desire, I think. Just to be able to…be…without this society trying to annihilate me for just being me.

But by then, it became painfully clear to me that nothing I was doing was working. And I was beginning to die a little bit. Or maybe a lot. Day by day. Remember those angry young men raging online? That’s how I began to feel. Rejected, outcast, scorned. And like nothing I could ever do would make the slightest difference. It hadn’t yet — and what else was there left for me to do? I slunk into a kind of catatonic despair, as soothing as the flames of a great fire. As cold and numbing as the dead of winter.

I knew, somehow, that this was it. My life was over in this place, as this person, in this role I was being forced to play, of the hated one. Yes, really. There was nothing left for me. Nobody wanted to be my friend. Nobody wanted to give me a job. Nobody wanted to date me. I was totally alone, all the time, isolated in a way that felt more painful than the last day of an eternal summer. I felt that feeling — that my life was over here — more deeply and truly than anything else I’ve ever felt, to this day — except the instant I met my partner, who saved my life, but that’s another story.

And so I did the only thing I had left to do. I fled. I went into exile. I ran away to Europe the very first chance I’d got. Where I’d never felt that sense of hate, that atmosphere of little violences forever aimed directly at me. That sense of constant threat — as if I was something to be annihilated, socially, culturally, economically. And after a long, long time, in its gentle arms, something in me began to change. But before I tell you what it was, I want to tell why it happened.

You see, after long enough away from being hated, deeply, pervasively, as if my entire being was something society wanted annihilated — and trying to desperately understand, bewildered, what I could do to stop being hated — I began to understand the place I’d fled from anew. I saw it much more clearly.

The promised land, the home of the brave, the land of the free. Why, why did it hate me so much? So relentlessly and so fiercely? I’d thought it was something about me. About being the skinny kid, the sickly one, the punk, the nerd, the goth, the poet. The young man who would’ve preferred to be a nobody — but only started writing because nobody would give him a job. And what I understood, at last, was this.

It had never really been about me at all. It had been about them. I was hated because hate is all that this place knew how to do. It didn’t know how to love, after all. The promised land was also a place where people happily denied each other healthcare and made each others’ kids pay lunch debt. And when concentration camps arose — yawn — who could really be bothered to care much? Hate had become a way of life. And I hated that way of life right back, with every tiny piece of me.

I was all the things that are taboo in our culture, that was true. Physically weak, intellectually curious, morally uncompromising, emotionally vulnerable, more interested in books and art and fashion and disco than guns and football and beer, defiantly so, not obedient and timid. I was the tiny schoolkid who refused to say the pledge because it struck me as an eye-rolling piece of propaganda. But that only meant I was at the bottom of the totem pole — no matter what I did, said, wore, but because of who I was. The totem pole of what? Of hate.

So it wasn’t just I who was the hated one. Hate was all there was there. Everyone hated everyone. More or less — or maybe just literally. Sure, they might have hated me more, since I was at the bottom of the hierarchy of what was valued — ruthlessness, cruelty, selfishness, violence, and so forth. But that missed the point entirely. Everyone hated everyone. That is what a Darwinian society whose purpose was to produce the fittest, through brutalizing, perpetual competition, had produced, emotionally, culturally, socially. Where there should have been mature, happy, open, vulnerable human beings…there were now just desperate beings driven by, fuelled by, living on, surviving through…hate.

There are many names for different kinds of hate. Greed, envy, resentment, cruelty, selfishness, anger, fury. And it seemed to me that this was all life had become in this place, or maybe was allowed to be. Was it any surprise it hated me, then? After all, it didn’t only hate me. Hate, in all these forms, was all that made this society go at all anymore.

With a kind of burning, abiding, terrible passion. These people hated each other so much that they were willing to literally kill themselves for the evanescent pleasure of hate. They were happy to shave years off their own life expectancy just to deny their neighbours healthcare…to make their own kids ignorant just to deny the ones next door an education…to go without retirement just so nobody else had it, either. They hated each other so much that…

They had become fools. Quite literally. What kind of people are willing to destroy themselves just to hurt someone else? Ah, my friends. But what else does hate do? It turns us into the very thing that we hate. Hating each other, to become the supreme ones, America had turned into the very thing it hated: a nation of poor, weak, powerless, weary, desperate people. Hardly the Nietzschean ubermen they worshipped. See the lesson?

So it struck me, one day, like a crack of thunder. It wasn’t just me they hated. Everyone hated everyone for being who they were, in a place where each was told nobody had any inherent worth, beauty, truth, or grace to give, nourish, keep, or treasure. Hate was all that there really was in the promised land. It was a place that didn’t know how to love. Did I want to live that life? Could I?

I made a choice that day. Or maybe over the coming days and weeks and months. I didn’t know how to express it for a very long time. I’ll still struggle with expressing it right now. How can I put it? I wanted to live in such a way that violence played as little a role in my life as possible. Consumed as little of my precious time, thoughts, attention, emotions. Violence in it’s deepest guises — emotional, intellectual, social, cultural: which we know by simpler words.

Greed, the wish to stand supreme atop a dying world. Envy and resentment, the wish to see others brought low. Anger, the wish to hurt another. Rage, the desire to annihilate sets of others. Cruelty, the indifference to suffering. Emptiness, the feeling that’s left when the violence is done. I wanted to cleanse my life of these things. To purify and distill the essence of a life worth living. I wanted to live a life in which all those many forms of hate never wasted another moment, feeling, thought, day. How many did I really have left?

So I stopped doing many of the things that I was by now expected to do. I stopped answering the invitations from CNN and MSNBC and so on. I began ignoring the invitations to speak at this and that conference about this and that (sorry). I thought about whether I’d ever want to write another book. I went back to making music and studying psychology, my first two passions, which, along the way of trying not to be hated desperately, had been forgotten and left to wither. My rule was simple: if it involved violence of any kind, hate in any form — I didn’t want to part of it.

I didn’t understand it then. How much I was growing — or how fast. I didn’t think of any of this the way we’re supposed to — to “seek growth” like it was some kind of other job, more work, more labour, to perfect the self. None of it felt like work to me. It just felt like freedom.

Now. Why have I told you this long, boring story? So that we get to know one another a little? That never hurts. But my reason cuts a little deeper. There’s another way to put all the above.

There was a little boy who felt hated. He turned into a young man desperate not to be that little boy. And so he tried everything — everything — to be, if not loved, admired, envied, then at least just accepted. He became somebody. But he wasn’t hated any less. If anything, he was only hated more.

At the edge of despair, he fled. To a place where he could look back — not in anger, but just in clarity. And what he saw, at last, was a simple, gruesome truth. The place he’d left behind was one where everyone hated everyone else. That is how they spent their lives. That was the rule that explained their choices, feelings, thoughts, actions. They didn’t think of it that way — they didn’t see it that way — some of them even saw hate as compassion, truth, and justice. But that didn’t change the simple fact that everyone hated everyone else, because nobody much had ever freed them to love. And so more and more, now, everyone felt hated, too. Rejected, scorned, forgotten, abandoned. Traumatized, wounded, erased, hurt, shattered.

And so I resolved to live a life as defiantly opposed to that cycle of violence, that wheel of despair and folly, as he could. But how was I to do all that?

Here’s secret. Nobody can teach you how to love. But the only person that can free you from the prison of hate is you. Yet don’t you see that prison expanding and growing around us every day now? So what’s the answer to this paradox?

If there was one thing I could tell all the ones who feel like I did, for so long, that impossible ache, that scalding pain — of being hated, for just being who they are — it would just be this. It’s not you that they hate. Not really. You’re missing the point. It’s everyone. Everyone hates everyone in the promised land. Obediently and meekly. It’s what they’ve been taught, and what is reinforced a thousand times a day, for centuries now. Hate them! You are better than them — aren’t you? So hate them! The weak ones. The ones who feel. The ones who think. The ones who care. The vulnerable ones. The little and fragile ones.

Ah, my friends — but that is all of us. It’s each of us. It’s every one of us. And so in a terrible and strange and bizarre circle, a snake forever eating its own tail, everyone hates everyone. That is the way that we have been taught to live, now, and for too long, perhaps forever. We have been dehumanized, and the result, increasingly, is that hate rules us, and the more that we feel hated, the more we hate right back.

Yet it’s not just you that’s hated. It’s everyone. What else is the feeling of living in a society of perpetual, relentless, brutalizing competition for every little thing? But if it’s everyone, then perhaps you are also playing your neatly assigned role in this clever game. Perhaps you are also hating everyone right back, obediently, just like you have been taught too, by history, by authority, by power, by those who dangle money and sex and fame at your feet. Maybe you are hated…but maybe you’re also the one who hates, too. What does that make you? A prisoner. But also the jailer. Who can set you free?

Nobody can teach you how to love. Nobody has to. You don’t need someone to teach you how to love a forest, a river, a sunset, a child, a little glittering fish, a perfect summer day. It is the truest thing in you. It’s as natural as blinking. All those prophets and great minds? From Jesus to Buddha, from Aristotle to Fromm? They’re not teaching you how to love. They’re just teaching you how to free yourself. From hate. To love. How to let slip not the dogs of war — but the bars of the prison of ego, desire, supremacy, selfhood.

There’s all the difference in the world between teaching how to love — which can’t be done — and freeing you to, which can. Because love isn’t some kind of formula or algorithm you can follow. It’s something much more mysterious than that. It is who you are, and all the pain of this world turning to dust comes from us not being who we are. From being stuck in offices and buying stuff at malls or online instead of walking beneath the leaves, beneath the stars, beneath the sky that becomes the sea which nourishes into the soil we become.

Pain — the truest kind there is — is not being who you are, which is a being expressing the love you naturally feel for life itself. That is what grief is, isn’t it? That is what sorrow and despair are, too. They are love, suffocated, stopped, blocked, from maturing, developing, touching, holding, seeing. And yet nobody can teach you how to love.

I didn’t teach myself how to love. I just had to teach myself how not to hate. I had to free myself from the prison of hate that had been built around me, so carefully, brick by brick, bar by bar, by history, by folly, by greed, by violence, by millennia of them. I had to stop playing my role in the clever game of everyone hating everyone else, for being who they really are, too. It wasn’t easy to dismantle and pulverize all that.

When I look at the world, here’s what I see sometimes. I still see millions, arrayed like a grid, in little cells, in a vast and eternal prison of hate. They sit cross-legged, paralyzed, mute, staring out with wide eyes. Eyes that say: “free me! Please — free me! Let me love someone or something! Let me be loved, in return! Ah. How I burn with hate! Won’t someone set me free?” But the strange thing is this. Each one, too, holds the key to their cell in their very intertwined hands. And each much discover that terrible, beautiful secret for themselves.

There are days, my friends, I could say all that to the world. But what good would it do? Come, then. Walk beside me awhile, in silence. And let the murmur of the leaves and the glittering of the stars be our guides home. Until we find our way back to ourselves, at last.

Umair – September 2019

By umair haque

Full link: https://eand.co/a-little-reflection-on-love-and-hate-e1905d51d33b

Collection – Being ‘Busy’ Doesn’t Mean You’re Successful

Do you know that feeling of being so busy that time flies with a blink of an eye? We’re so busy with all kinds of things — work, friends, going out, holidays, etc. But being busy is not a good thing at all.

Especially because we waste most of our time on nonsense. We say we’re busy but in reality, we just fill up our lives with crap.

We binge-watch tv shows for days, we go to networking events with weirdoes who try to sell you their services, we spend hours finding new clothes to buy so we can impress people we don’t even like.

We’re busy with bullshit. But until a few years ago, I never got it. When people asked me, “how are you,” my answer was, “busy.”

What’s wrong with us? Why are we so busy with things that don’t matter?

We even use our busyness as an excuse for important things. That’s sad. After I realized that I wasn’t in control of my life, I decided to stop being busy.

Being busy is an excuse that losers use. I say that because you can use “busy” as an excuse for everything.

  • You forgot your anniversary. “Yeah, but you know how busy I am, right? I’ll make it up to you.”
  • You haven’t called your mother in six months. “Mom, I’m sooo busy.”
  • You didn’t go to the gym. “I’m too busy to work out.”
  • And the WORST: “I’m too busy to work on the stuff that makes me happy.” That can be your music, business, model trains, or whatever.

I’ve used all those excuses. But at some point, I told myself this: How on earth can you be too busy to give someone that’s important to you a call? That’s nonsense.

Every time you say you’re busy, you’re actually saying that you can’t prioritize your life.

Most people identify being busy with being successful. But unlike 95% of the people I know, I don’t think being busy means you’re successful.

When you meet people, they often want to show you that they have busy lives. “A full calendar must mean that I’m doing SOMETHING right, right?”

The truth is: If you’re busy, you don’t live at all. You just exist.

Derek Sivers, one of my favorite thinkers, says:

“To me, ‘busy’ implies that the person is out of control of their life.”

“But if I’m not busy, what the hell should I do?”

Slow down there. Take a step back. And think about which things in your life are just ‘busy work’ and not meaningful.

Seneca put it best:

“A good man will not waste himself upon mean and discreditable work or be busy merely for the sake of being busy.”

Here’s how I put that in practice.

It’s absolutely fine if you DON’T have plans for the weekend. People’s favorite question on Monday is: “What did you do over the weekend?”

You don’t have to do things so you can tell others about it. If people ask me, this is what I say: “NOTHING.”

Or, I say: “I wrote, went to the gym, and had dinner with family.”

And they look at me like: “That’s all?”

What? I’m not cool if I didn’t travel the world, had dinner with aboriginals, and jumped out of a jumbo jet on the way back?

Another thing: I say NO a lot.

Want to grab coffee all day? Want to write an article for money? Want to work for us? Want to do this, or that?

No, not now — I don’t want to be busy.

When you’re busy, time moves fast. And I want time to move SLOW. That’s why I only say yes to things that matter to me.

You know that feeling? Some days seem like forever, and years later, you still remember how you felt that day. You should feel like that almost every day.

All you have to do is slow down, stop being busy, don’t forget about important things, and live a conscious life.

It’s not that difficult, right? You can start now.

By Darius Foroux

Full link: https://medium.com/swlh/being-busy-doesn-t-mean-you-re-successful-57f54461ddcf

Landscape – The Bumpy Road to Profits in Developing Asia’s Mobility Industry

Four approaches can jump-start stalled companies—and the future.

  • China’s once red-hot mobility industry, a model for the rest of developing Asia, has watched growth slow and profits fail to materialize.
  • E-hailing, bike sharing and business-to-consumer car sharing are all stalled. Only instant-delivery players show signs of immediate hope.
  • There is a route to profitable growth. For example, e-hailing companies need best-in-class operations, geographic focus, more adjacencies and innovation.
  • Autonomous vehicles will be the biggest game changer for mobility in developing Asia. Companies can get into the game by forming smart partnerships, alliances and open platforms.

China’s mobility market was riding high for three exciting years, as users eagerly embraced e-hailing, bike sharing, car sharing and instant delivery. But now, much of the industry has taken a sharp and unexpected turn.

The road to recovery in China, the most advanced mobility market among Asia’s developing countries, will serve as a lesson for players hoping to advance in what we call the “Five Races”: customer focus, autonomous driving, connectivity, electric powertrains and shared mobility services.

Beginning in 2014, companies providing a range of mobility services appeared to be on a steady path to profits once they achieved scale. However, even after rapidly growing in popularity, most companies have not yet turned a profit. This story is playing out throughout the world.

What happened? In China, the mobility industry was poised to reach a market size of $72 billion by 2020. We now project it will grow to $60 billion by 2021. Industry leader Didi’s red-hot growth prospects swiftly and unexpectedly cooled when the rapes and murders of two passengers led the Chinese government to suspend the company’s Hitch carpool service. To ensure safety and market sustainability, local authorities began imposing tighter operating-license regulations. More than 200 Chinese cities issued new regulations on platforms, vehicles and drivers, regulating everything from insurance to drivers’ health. In a bid to reach profitability, Didi reduced passenger discounts and driver incentives, a move that ultimately decreased the supply of available cars.

In 2018, annual growth in China’s e-hailing industry dropped to 25% as the number of monthly active users fell by 5% (see Figure 1). The downward trend is expected to continue amid the safety issues and mounting regulations. For example, Didi recently announced that it removed 300,000 unqualified drivers from its platform. We anticipate growth will be less than 5% in 2019, then regain momentum and range from 10% to 15% in 2021, based on restored consumer confidence and a potential return of Hitch services with safety measures in place.

Figure 1

Growth in China’s smart mobility market decelerated in 2018, after booming in 2014–17

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It always takes time for a new technology company to achieve profitability, but in this case, more than its share of obstacles have blocked the road to profits (see Figure 2). For one thing, e-hailing leaders have struggled to defend their market share. Just as Uber’s 60% share of the US market could not scare away upstart Lyft, Didi‘s absolute leadership in China could not stop newcomers like Meituan from quickly establishing new services in targeted regions. The stiff competition, from both local ride-hailing companies and taxis, limits market leaders’ flexibility in pricing and “take rates” (a company’s share of the fare)—and take rates are subject to government control, too. Complicating the situation further: Didi achieved profitability on a per-ride basis in its Hitch service, but now must wait to see if that service is restored in order to resume its journey to companywide profits.

Figure 2

Unlike Google, Facebook and Amazon, mobility leaders have not yet turned scale into profit

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Two other segments of the mobility industry are in a similar funk. Bike sharing’s once glowing promise has dimmed, with most businesses in China closing shop—including No. 2 player Ofo—as cash flow dwindled and major cities set limits on the number of available bikes. Business-to-consumer car sharing encountered its own set of woes. The top five companies in China expanded their fleet size fivefold in just two years, burning cash in the process and struggling to find profits. The rate of growth slowed to 50% in 2018.

In China’s mobility industry, only instant-delivery companies are showing signs of immediate hope, with sales rising by 40% in 2018 and the steady introduction of new concepts such as grocery delivery, intracity express and consumer-to-consumer errand services. Those new services have made instant delivery an investment hot spot even as shared mobility services fall from grace. Overall mobility investments dropped by 48% in China in 2018 (see Figure 3). But while investments in e-hailing plummeted by roughly 90%, investments in instant-delivery companies tripled.

Figure 3

Shared mobility investments in China fell 48% in 2018, mainly due to e-hailing

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Despite these challenges, we see a route to profits for the mobility industry, not only in China, but throughout Asian developing markets from Indonesia to India. The economics can work for leaders willing to make the tough decisions and acknowledge that success will not happen overnight. For example, as e-hailing companies continue to tackle safety and quality issues, passenger confidence will gradually return, despite constraints on supply. Also, in China and elsewhere in developing Asia, companies can pursue growth opportunities in lower-tier cities. They can save costs by cutting passenger incentives and boost revenues by delivering higher-priced services. More dramatically, they can develop a full platform of services, bet big on vertical integration, and consider the massive savings to be reaped by investing in electric vehicles—all while preparing for the day when autonomous vehicles will transform the industry, making profits significantly easier to achieve for well-positioned players.

Four ways to get there

Focusing on the e-hailing segment, we have identified the four imperatives for achieving profitability.

Create best-in-class operations. Companies are responding to the safety challenge through such features as emergency contacts, real-time location sharing, audio recordings and privacy numbers. These initiatives should help restore passenger confidence. However, companies need to aggressively improve their fare levels and take rates in order to counter some of the big costs contributing to their losses: driver pay, incentives and insurance (see Figure 4).

Figure 4

Driver pay, incentives and insurance are big reasons for Lyft’s losses

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Some companies are upgrading with premium services for such customers as business passengers, airport travelers and riders traveling with babies and children. Two- and three-passenger carpools can raise profits as much as 100%, for example. In addition to improving their service mix, the best companies will make better use of data and proprietary algorithms for real-time adjustments to pricing and incentives. Localized pricing strategies are also an option, as affordability, public transportation and access to taxis vary among cities. Winners will also rigorously pursue cost initiatives. Both Uber and Lyft have controlled fixed costs in the past three years through such measures as standardized operations or improving the efficiency of insurance expenses and sales and marketing (see Figure 5).

Figure 5

Ride-hailing companies have taken various steps to narrow losses over the past three years

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E-hailing companies can reap significant benefits by investing in electric vehicle fleets. That could reduce fuel costs by 65%, more than offsetting a 15% increase in the rental costs, according to Bain research in China (see Figure 6). That also would allow companies to raise their take rate without affecting drivers’ income—an important consideration as attracting drivers becomes more difficult. Electric vehicle fleets could be a viable near-term alternative in China, where the number of charging stations will increase more than sixfold from 2018 to 2020. However, in the developing economies of Southeast Asia, electric vehicles will remain scarce in the immediate future, until they become more affordable, the government offers incentives to manufacturers and consumers, and a sufficient infrastructure is in place. Among the many obstacles to overcome: government policies in countries like Indonesia and Malaysia discourage imported vehicles, and currently no electric models are manufactured locally (see the Bain Brief “Finding a New Route to Southeast Asia’s Electric Vehicle Future”). However, Indonesia has begun working on financial incentives to encourage sales and domestic production of electric vehicles.

Figure 6

Savings from electric vehicles could increase company take rates by about 10 percentage points

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Stay geographically focused. Regional density is critical for profitability in e-hailing. Uber realized it could not make it in China, Russia and Southeast Asia, where it had subscale business, so it quickly sold out to local leaders, reducing its losses. Companies should target regions for market leadership and build a dense and stable fleet, reducing both passenger waiting time and operating costs. In China, where e-hailing penetration is reaching the saturation point, that means shifting focus to the high-growth opportunities in lower-tier cities.

Explore adjacency expansion. The best e-hailing companies will develop a full platform of products (see Figure 7). They will expand to other transportation modes or services, such as scooters or instant delivery, making the most of their algorithm and platform. Consider Uber’s move into freight and food delivery; Lyft’s scooters and Citi Bikes; and Didi’s bicycle platform, as well as its strategic investments in food-delivery service Ele.me and in payments with Didi Wallet. In Southeast Asia, Grab has expanded into all of these areas, in addition to shuttles and motorcycles.

Figure 7

Companies are exploring “full platform” opportunities in mobility services to maximize assets

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Successful e-hailing companies will also make big bets on vertical integration, venturing along the automotive value chain to explore new revenue streams in everything from auto financing and after-sales service to used car sales and the central procurement of gasoline and parts. We estimate the auto-financing profit pool in China totals $3 billion, with operating margins of 25% to 30%. In after-sales service, including one-stop solutions linked with real-time vehicle data, the profit pool in China adds up to $30 billion, with operating margins of 12% to 15%.

Innovate. E-hailing companies are in a prime position to play the gatekeeper role for future value-added services and data with the connected people and vehicles on their platforms. A single example: they can build a mobility ecosystem, allowing third parties to provide innovative services through their platforms such as targeted advertising and entertainment, thus monetizing vehicle and user behavior data.

How difficult will it be to implement these four imperatives? The answer often differs across the globe.

In building best-in-class operations, for example, there is less leeway in China to increase e-hailing prices, given the low taxi fares and mature public transportation. Southeast Asia is better positioned than most markets to boost take rates, as drivers there already earn an average of 25% more than taxi drivers do. Yet, all markets have the potential to improve costs as they shift from growing scale to pursuing profits. Focused play is a strategy that is possible in all regions, too; it already is helping Uber concentrate its resources on key markets. Adjacency expansion is more of an option in the US and Southeast Asia, where shared service concepts like food delivery are still nascent, than in China, where the business is already well-established. Meanwhile, innovation can be an answer anywhere, especially for companies that actively seek partnerships with third-party providers.

Enter the game changer

The momentous advance that stands to revolutionize mobility throughout the world is autonomous vehicles. This will happen in four ways. First, autonomous vehicles will reshape ride-hailing fleet operations by greatly reducing driver costs and improving fleet utilization. They will transform the passenger experience with completely redesigned interiors featuring large screens, for example, and in-vehicle interfaces for data-enabled offerings such as route planning. They will expand opportunities for cloud service and open up possibilities for monetizing passenger data. That means targeted marketing to the right audience at the right time and location. Passengers could receive location-based restaurant ads or baby-care ads during a homeward commute, for example, depending on their profile and location. Finally, autonomous vehicles will introduce “intelligent” cities, with such new capabilities as controlled traffic flow and vehicle-to-everything communication.

Getting there fast means joining forces. Autonomous vehicles will give rise to a complex cast of new stakeholders and a shifting of power among them. Fleets will own the majority of vehicles. Interfaces will take on the data gatekeeper role. Amid these and other huge changes, all players will need to be part of an open platform or partnerships (among original equipment manufacturers, mobility service providers and tech companies, for example) just to stay in the game. This already is happening around the world. Consider Toyota’s keiretsu for the in-house development of autonomous driving, which includes Uber, Aisin, Denso, Nauto and Nvidia. Meanwhile, more than 100 partners—including Daimler and Honda—are working with Baidu to develop an operating system for autonomous driving.

Given the tangible benefit to customers, the stakes for tech giants and OEMs, and the upside for cities, autonomous vehicles will inevitably break through. This is not a fairy tale. With government support, technology advancement and customer acceptance, China could catch up with global speed on the adoption of L4+ (see the sidebar, “Autonomous vehicle levels, explained”), clearing a path to solid profits for its mobility industry and setting a pace for the rest of developing Asia.

  • SAE International, the global professional association established as the Society of Automotive Engineers, defines six levels of automation.

    Level 0: No automation

    Level 1: Driver assistance. Under certain conditions, the car controls either the steering or the vehicle speed, but not both simultaneously.

    Level 2: Partial automation. The car can steer, accelerate and brake in certain circumstances.

    Level 3: Conditional automation. In the right conditions, the car can manage most aspects of driving, including monitoring the environment. The system prompts the driver to intervene when it encounters a scenario it cannot navigate.

    Level 4: High automation. The car can operate without human input or oversight, but only under select conditions defined by factors such as road type or geographic area.

    Level 5: Full automation. The driverless car can operate on any road and in any conditions a human driver could negotiate.

There are no clear winners yet in the mobility industry’s Five Races, but the early movers will put themselves at a significant advantage. Becoming a relevant player in the future mobility ecosystem calls for making strategic decisions now and forming the smart partnerships and alliances that will be key to success. It could mean the difference between writing mobility’s future and being written out of it.

By Raymond Tsang, Dorothy Cai and Helen Liu

Full link: https://www.bain.com/insights/the-bumpy-road-to-profits-in-developing-asias-mobility-industry/?utm_medium=Newsletter&utm_source=Advanced-Manufacturing-Services-September-2019&utm_campaign=the-bumpy-road-to-profits-in-developing-asias-mobility-industry&mkt_tok=eyJpIjoiTVRWaVptSm1PRGd3WlRFeCIsInQiOiI5aENxN0ZsdUZ6WlFTZDdlM2RUN1wvRGU5TStEMzVJeUl6dUFQdFc2aVNYd3I5VHorSlJnTklabXNDNmZhSjlGMTdLZHRwNG5aUHFvbnM1b2NXQlZOSzVGQXFMcXZQQmxybzFKWElsc0VZNThXNVFscjVpMmdvR1RGemxsRzRWK0oifQ%3D%3D

Note – PitchBook: Things fall apart at WeWork

Well, that was quick.

The collapse of Theranos unfolded over the span of several months, marked by multiple Wall Street Journal bombshells and a series of legal battles. The events that led to Travis Kalanick’s removal from Uber transpired over the course of one no good, very bad year. But WeWork and Adam Neumann have always wanted to be exceptional. As it turns out, that also means that the company’s implosion came about with exceptional rapidity.

It’s all gone from business as usual—well, as usual as it ever was at WeWork—to total catastrophe in the span of six weeks. Among the deluge of developments over the past seven days: Neumann is out as WeWork’s CEO, having reportedly voted for his own removal. Two co-replacements have been named. WeWork is planning layoffs. It’s planning divestitures. There almost certainly isn’t going to be an IPO this year. A “purge” of Neumann’s confidants at the company is reportedly in the works.

They’re even selling the company Gulfstream. The Gulfstream! Where’s Neumann supposed to get high during his transcontinental travels now?

This is The Weekend Pitch. I’m Kevin Dowd, and you can reach me at weekend@pitchbook.com. WeWork has responded to a quickly shrinking valuation and nearly unprecedented amounts of pre-IPO ridicule by blowing everything up—and that’s one of 10 things you need to know from the past week:

1. The fall of WeWork

As the autumn leaves are turning color, WeWork is turning into a startup saga for the ages.

On Monday, I wrote a piece comparing Neumann’s “potential” ouster to the conclusion of Kalanick’s time at Uber. The very next day, in a move that was in some ways stunning but in others seemed to be the only logical conclusion to this whole mess, Neumann stepped down as CEO, acquiescing to the apparent wishes of Masayoshi Son and SoftBank. Also to his own wishes, I guess: Neumann voted to remove himself in a meeting of the WeWork board, according to Reuters.

Neumann will remain with the company as non-executive chairman with his influence greatly diminished; his super-voting shares that once were worth 20 votes each have been reduced to 3 votes per share. Two career executives will take his place as new co-CEOs: Artie Minson, who joined WeWork in 2015 after stints in the C-suites at Time Warner Cable and AOL, and Sebastian Gunningham, who spent more than a decade at Amazon before jumping to WeWork last year.

At the time of his hire, Gunningham issued a statement that he was “headed to join another magical company in its mission to reinvent the places and communities where people go to work.” It probably doesn’t seem so magical anymore.

It appears Minson and Gunningham won’t waste any time in making some major changes. Thousands of layoffs could be in store, up to half of the company’s workforce, according to TechCrunch. Neumann’s wife, Rebekah, is giving up her roles as chief brand officer at WeWork and CEO of WeGrow, the company’s bizarre education offshoot. Leadership is planning “to purge nearly 20 friends and family members” of the Neumanns, including a vice chairman and the chief product officer, per the WSJ. Bloomberg reported Friday that SoftBank is enlisting former Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure to fill an unspecified role at WeWork. The company reportedly plans to sell off three startups it acquired for a combined $475 million over the past three years.

And again: the Gulfstream. The Gulfstream! The $60 million private jet was “a favorite” of Neumann’s, according to the WSJ. At first, that honestly makes me feel a tiny bit bad for the guy, because that would suck to go from having access to your own $60 million jet to not having access to your own $60 million jet. But then my sanity returns, and I start to giggle.

In a memo to WeWork employees after his resignation, Neumann reportedly wrote, “Since the announcement of our IPO, too much of the focus has been placed on me.” I mean, yeah, but also: That particular problem began way before the announcement of the IPO. One way to look at WeWork’s past few years is as a story of investors (like Son and SoftBank) and bankers (like Jamie Dimon and JPMorgan Chase) enabling an egomaniac’s worst impulses by furnishing him with an unlimited supply of capital. It’s the logical endpoint of the cult of the founder. It’s how you get stuff like a $13 million-plus investment in a company that makes wave pools.

Part of the problem is WeWork’s incessant pursuit of growth at all costs. In that way, it’s like so many other startups grabbing headlines across Silicon Valley and beyond. In that way, the company’s nightmarish past month could have some far-reaching impacts on the VC mindset.

But another part of the problem is Neumann spending money in insane ways, and nobody being there to stop him. The wave pools and the Gulfstream are fun examples, but the list goes on. There were other seemingly tangential acquisitions. There was the spa reportedly attached to Neumann’s office. And why does this company have more than 12,000 employees? What are they all doing all day? Isn’t part of the appeal of being a business that leases office space that you can just sit back and watch the rent payments come in? Am I missing something here?

Maybe it makes more sense if you’re used to outrageous numbers appearing out of the ether. We’ve often talked about WeWork being valued at $47 billion earlier this year, but it’s worth remembering that there was only one backer responsible for that valuation: SoftBank. No other investor has put cash into WeWork at anything more than a $21.2 billion. Which now also seems much too high, but still.

All the upheaval means WeWork almost certainly won’t go public this year; the company has reportedly shifted its focus toward 2020. With that listing delayed and Peloton conducting its public offering this week (more on that momentarily), it seems we could be at the end of the Great Unicorn IPO Parade of 2019. What a strange procession it’s been.

2. Peloton’s flat tire

Peloton priced its home fitness IPO at the top end of its expected range this week, at $29 per share, establishing an initial market cap of $8.1 billion—nearly double the $4.15 billion valuation from its final round of VC funding. But the public market wasn’t too kind in Peloton’s first two days of trading: Its shares fell 13%, closing the week at $25.24. That icy reception likely played a role in Hollywood talent agency Endeavor postponing its scheduled IPO this week, a move that came after the Silver Lake portfolio company had already downsized the expected size of the listing.

3. Up in smoke

WeWork wasn’t the only high-profile unicorn to lose its leader this week: Kevin Burns stepped down as the leader of Juul Labs, a seeming casualty of an ongoing federal crackdown on e-cigarettes that comes as mysterious vaping-related illnesses continue to pile up across the US. Juul’s troubles were also almost surely a factor in Altria and Philip Morris calling off plans this week for a tobacco mega-merger. Altria is a major Juul backer, having invested $12.8 billion in the business last year.

4. Media maneuvers

Online destinations like The Cut, SB Nation, Vulture, Recode, Grub Street and The Verge will soon all be part of the same corporate family. That’s after Vox Media agreed this week to acquire New York Media, the proprietor of the famed New York Magazine and a network of other sites covering news, culture, food and more. The deal marks a rare example of a VC-backed digital media upstart taking over a prestigious legacy publication.

5. Meat maneuvers

After finalizing its $650 million takeover this week of Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group, L Catterton promptly turned around and sold two of the company’s two prime assets to Landry’s, a restaurant conglomerate owned by Houston Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta. Landry’s will pay between $300 million and $325 million for two steakhouse chains, per the WSJ. In a separate deal, another restaurant conglomerate—this one backed by private equity—struck a freaky fast pact to purchase Jimmy John’s.

6. Bolt-ons for Bolton

The week was an, uh, interesting one for US politics. In the meantime, one man who was recently ejected from the White House, former national security advisor John Bolton, made a return to private equity, joining Rhône Group as a senior advisor. He became the latest politician this year to transition into the buyout world.

7. Euro IPOs

In Sweden, EQT joined the list of publicly traded PE giants this week with a well-received IPO, with its stock surging more than 25% on its first day of trading. German software company TeamViewer went public this week at a valuation of €5.25 billion (about $5.8 billion), with private equity backer Permira reportedly raising more than €2.2 billion by selling a significant stake. And another German company, BioNTech, revealed plans for a Nasdaq IPO that could value the biotech startup at $4.5 billion.

8. Apollo’s power shift

There are now two new names leading the private equity business at Apollo Global Management: senior partners Matt Nord and David Sambur, both longtime investors at the firm who will be taking over operations of the PE unit from firm co-president Scott Kleinman. The promotions of Nord and Sambur were part of a larger executive restructuring at the financial behemoth.

9. Mind control

When Facebook, Amazon and Google get together on a deal, it’s worth paying attention. Particularly when said deal involves controlling computers with your brain. That’s the technology being developed by CTRL-labs, a startup that Facebook agreed to buy this week from GV, the Amazon Alexa Fund and other backers, reportedly for upward of $500 million. CTRL-labs makes a bracelet that converts electric signals from the brain into activity on a digital screen. Posting a status update might soon be a whole lot easier.

10. Memeification

Kapwing—apparently pronounced “kuh-PWING,” not “CAP-wing,” for what it’s worth—is in the meme business, making free software its users can deploy to easily edit photos and videos before posting them on social media or some other internet outpost. This week, the startup raised $11 million in a Series A led by CRV. The fact that Facebook is buying a company like CTRL-labs rather than one like Kapwing is revealing: Facebook’s users just want to use the site to share silly GIFs. Facebook would prefer those users give the company access to their literal brains. There might be a bit of a disconnect there.

Startup name of the week

It’s an easy selection this week. A startup called Bold Penguin announced $32 million in Series B funding on Monday, and if the idea of a startup called “Bold Penguin” doesn’t make you smile just a teensy bit, then I don’t know what to tell you. It’s a particularly nice gambit when what your company does—in this case, create software for the commercial insurance industry—probably isn’t going to get most people all that fired up. No offense to commercial insurance, but penguins are a lot more fun, are they not?

The Weekend Pitch

 PitchBook

 

Landscape – After 70 years, it’s time to upgrade China’s economic reforms

The seventy year history of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) can be divided into two periods in economic policy strategy. The first three decades were governed by the centrally planned system and the next four saw major market-oriented reform. In the pre-reform year, there was important progress in the form of infrastructure development, urban industrialization and human capital accumulation. But the achievement of catching up with the world’s most advanced economies largely delivered during the second period when China’s annual GDP growth recorded an average of 9.2 per cent.

The lighting-up of a group of buildings to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the founding of a nation in Shenzhen, Guangdong, China on 27 September 2019 (Photo: Reuters/The Yomiuri Shimbun).

The turning point occurred after December 1978 when the leaders decided to shift the policy focus from political struggle to economic construction. Then, China was one of the poorest countries in the world. Today, it is the world’s second largest economy, the largest goods exporter and the number one industrial producer, with a high middle-income level — though its per capita income is still just 18 per cent that of Australia. This dramatic improvement was mainly attributable to the reform and open-door policy and departure from the central planning model.

The exact role played by the state in China’s recent economic success, however, remains controversial, both at home and abroad. This issue is at the centre of the current trade war between China and the United States. So-called ‘state capitalism’, however, needs to be evaluated from a more pragmatic not an ideological standpoint.

On one hand, many Chinese policy interventions were initially introduced to ensure a smooth transition from the central planning system to a free market economy. Therefore they were, and some still are, transitional phenomena, not a permanent feature of the Chinese economic system. On the other hand, some policy interventions actually bring more social benefit by helping overcome the problems of market failure.

Take the financial sector for example. The government still intervenes quite extensively in financial markets, in the determination of interest rates and exchange rates, and in credit allocation and cross-border capital flows. Empirical analyses suggest that these repressive financial policies actually boosted economic growth during the early decades of economic reform by effectively converting savings into investment and underpinning financial stability. The counterfactual analysis reveals that, were China to have completely liberalised the financial system in 1978, its GDP growth in the 1980s would have been reduced by about 0.8 percentage points a year.

Because it takes time for the market mechanisms to take root, it’s unwise to advise the government to immediately abandon all of interventions as it undertakes large-scale economic reforms. It’s equally wrong to perpetuate these policy interventions as the Chinese economic system transitions to efficient marketisation. The same analysis finds that more aggressive financial liberalisation would have increased China’s GDP growth in the 2000s. These imply that it should now be beneficial to push ahead market-oriented financial reform more decisively.

In 2012 the Chinese leadership reiterated the two Centennial Goals. The first is to double the 2010 GDP and per capita income for both urban and rural residents by 2021, the year when the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) celebrates its centenary. The second is to build China into a fully developed country that is prosperous, powerful, democratic, culturally advanced and harmonious by 2049, the year when the PRC celebrates its centenary. It looks like China is on track to achieve the first Centennial Goal as real GDP grew by an average of 7.4 per cent from 2010–2018. Achieving the second Centennial Goal will be more challenging as the country has lost its low-cost advantage in the international marketplace, is experiencing dramatic population ageing and faces anti-globalisation externally.

The only way to sustain robust economic growth over the coming three decades is to pursue higher quality reform and open-door policies. Higher quality reform means that China should complete its transition to the free market system, although the trajectory of the transition needs to remain pragmatic. Policy discrimination against the private enterprises, for instance, did not prevent China from achieving rapid economic growth in the past, but now it is a major hurdle to rapid growth because private enterprises account for 70 per cent of domestic patents and 80 per cent of urban employment. The government should now consider ending the ‘dual-track reform strategy’ so as to achieve competitive neutrality between private firms and the state and to let market forces play the decisive role in national resource allocation.

Higher quality open-door policy means that China should aim at adopting an external policy regime of ‘zero tariffs, zero barriers and zero subsidies’. China has been one of the main beneficiaries of globalisation during the past four decades. It has a very large stake in maintaining the open international economic system. Chinese efforts to continue to liberalise, even if unilaterally, will benefit the world economy as well as the Chinese economy.

China should consider giving up its ‘developing country’ status under international trade law. While China is still a developing country in fact, its size and its policies already have major global effects that shape the way the whole system now works. By giving up ‘developing country’ status, China would not only benefit greatly from further liberalisation itself but also assume a leadership role in supporting the open international economic system.

Celebration of the seventieth anniversary of the PRC provides a chance to reflect on its economic policy choices today. China’s experiment with the central planning system largely failed but adoption of the reform and open-door policies delivered an ‘economic miracle’ of unprecedented scale. The Chinese economy is at another important turning point. If the government can pragmatically adopt higher quality reform and open-door policies, it is highly likely that by 2049, China’s GDP per capita would reach two-thirds of that of the United States, although its GDP growth might moderate considerably to 2.7–4.2 percent. This would ensure that the country achieves its second Centennial Goal.

Author: Yiping Huang, PKU

Full link: https://www.eastasiaforum.org/2019/09/29/after-70-years-its-time-to-upgrade-chinas-economic-reforms/

Landscape – China’s achievement grounded in reform and openness

The revolution that saw the birth of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) seventy years ago has now come to define the parameters of most of the big economic and political choices in the world today. But that would never have been so had the PRC remained the convulsed, inward-looking communist state that tried to find its way without the rest of the world — including eventually its old ideological bedfellow, the Soviet Union. In its first three decades modern China had little impact on the world economy and was largely closed to global trade.

Workers make Chinese flags at a factory ahead of the 70th founding anniversary of People's Republic of China, in Jiaxing, Zhejiang province, China, 25 September 2019 (Photo: Reuters/Stringer).

Certainly national coherence through the founding of the communist state also made the remarkable economic and social achievements of the past four decades possible. But China’s influence and power in the world and importance to Australia and countries throughout the world today are significantly a product of its initially tentative but strategic choice to reform, adopt capitalist markets and open up to the world.

China’s choice to go market, to sanction private property and to open up was bound to embrace Australia economically more than almost any other country in the world. The deep complementary in economic structures between the two countries, like that with Japan and our other Northeast Asian partners before, made that inevitable. Even before opening up after 1979, Australia’s critical wheat and steal trade around all the diplomatic barriers was a harbinger of deep complementarity in trade.

In 1938, John Crawford, architect of Australia’s economic rapprochement with Japan after the Second World War, proclaimed that Singapore provided no defence for Australia against the threat of Japanese invasion. The future of Australia as a Pacific power would depend, he argued, on the political security that opening trade with our northern neighbours could provide through underwriting economic security in the modernisation of Japan and China.

This grand bargain, built eventually within the post war multilateral trade regime that permitted realisation of these complementarities and the huge growth of interdependence in Asian trade and economic relations, remains the core foundation of Australia’s economic and political security in Asia today.

Another foundation, of course, is the US alliance framework. Both in fact were born out of the February 1942 Mutual Aid Agreement between Canberra and Washington that secured wartime supplies in exchange for Australian sign-on to the multilateral trade regime. It is the transformation of Asia’s economy, the impact it’s had on the structure of world power, and the multilateral framework on which it was built that must be top Australian security priorities right now.

Openness to international trade and investment since 1979 has been integral to Chinese economic transformation over the past four decades. Australia’s leadership played a not-unimportant role in helping to shape that course with China’s top leadership at crucial choice-points in the past: in working through the development of China’s huge resource trade dependence in the mid-eighties and in extending unwavering political support and technical assistance along the road to WTO accession.

China’s achievement in lifting 800 million people of poverty in a relatively short time was the result of China’s profoundly changing the way it engaged with the rest of the world through these initiatives. Its reforms were propelled and deepened by the international rules that it signed on to and has substantially adhered to since accession to the WTO, the protocols of which were in fact far more demanding than those of other developing countries and even developed members at that time.

As Wang Gungwu argues in the first of this week’s lead essays, the rise of China that these reforms have enabled will not be easily turned back. ’This stems’, says Wang, ‘from the people’s belief in progress and their ability to combine the new with what was best in their past traditions. By being willing to learn so much from the modern West, China today is undergoing a totally different experience of rising again after a great fall’.

The development of domestic markets — a key element of Chinese reform that has not changed despite consolidation of the political control of the state — was entrenched by integration into international markets via trade, investment flows, technology transfers, people-to-people exchanges and the spread of knowledge. Last year 134 million Chinese travelled abroad, including the continuing stream of Chinese students who choose to study overseas.

‘Celebration of the seventieth anniversary of the PRC provides a chance’ as Yiping Huang argues in our second lead essay, ‘to reflect on its economic policy choices today. China’s experiment with the central planning system largely failed but adoption of the reform and open-door policies delivered an ‘economic miracle’ of unprecedented scale. The Chinese economy is at another important turning point. If the government can pragmatically adopt higher quality reform and open-door policies, it is highly likely that, by 2049, China’s GDP per capita would reach two-thirds of that of the United States, although its GDP growth might moderate considerable to 2.7–4.2 per cent’.

International markets presented China with opportunities greater than those available during Japan’s and South Korea’s periods of extraordinary growth. China’s seizing of these opportunities has enhanced global interdependence to a degree the world has never seen before, though that’s now under threat.

The emergence and the impact of the strategic resource trade relationship with Australia that assisted China’s successful industrialisation was one important consequence. Like Japan before it, China now has high trade shares with Australia. Australia–China goods trade topped AU$192 billion (US$130 billion) in 2018, having grown more than five times as fast as the world average in the last five years. China’s shares in total Australian trade last year at 30 per cent and for exports at 34 per cent, are running at 32 per cent and 38 per cent so far this year.

It’s properly functioning markets that have delivered these strong Australia–China trade results. Australia’s largest trade relationship is one that is interdependent with (not dependent on) China, which already draws 60 per cent of all its iron ore imports and a quarter of its imports of strategic raw materials from Australia, a proportion that continues to grow.

The impressive diversification of trade in goods and services following ChAFTA, over a five-year period of difficulty in the political relationship, is a measure of the power of international markets in continuing to shape the two countries’ bilateral economic relations.

The resilience of the Australia–China trade relationship depends fundamentally on both partners’ commitment to the international market system and the rules under which it has flourished. That system is the core of economic and political security in Asia, a system currently under threat.

Australia and China have common cause with their partners in the region in dealing with this threat. At the same time the political anxieties caused by China’s rise, partly but not wholly because of its different political system, have to be confronted frankly in Australia’s dialogue with China.

The core task is to enunciate the substantial strategic interests that both countries have come to share over the past 40 year, in a time of great change. That requires the boldness and vision that the leaderships of both countries have shown at critical turning points in the past. This task will be on-going. But the celebration of the anniversary of the establishment of the modern Chinese state might be a good time to begin.

Author: Editorial Board, ANU

Full link: https://www.eastasiaforum.org/2019/09/30/chinas-achievement-grounded-in-reform-and-openness/

Note – Fisher: Everything You Never Wanted to Know About the Repo Market & A Word on Impeachment and Stocks & Land of the Rising Consumption Tax By Fisher Investments Editorial Staff

We swear we tried to make this approachable and interesting.

Last week, one largely undiscussed-yet-important area of the US financial system experienced unusual volatility—triggering an ocean of jargon incomprehensible to most. It is a significant challenge, but here we aim to cut through all of that and provide you a readable, lay-speak discussion of what happened in the repurchase agreement (repo) market. Trigger warning: This is dry stuff! We will make every effort to make this generally readable and weave in a joke or two as a palate cleanser. Overall, our takeaway is this: Last week’s swings seemingly stem from a combination of small technical factors the Fed didn’t anticipate and responded to at a lag. However, those factors aside, last week’s action wasn’t terribly abnormal and doesn’t seem like a prelude to broader problems ahead.

Before we go any further, it behooves all of us to get on the same page about what the repo market is. It goes straight to the basic functioning of banks in most market economies. Banks are required to hold a certain amount of money for each dollar they lend or trade—called a reserve requirement. To keep the math simple, imagine the reserve requirement is 10%. That means banks must hold $1 in reserve for every $9 lent.

Occasionally, banks dip below the minimum. This is not abnormal! It is not a sign of a looming crisis! It may be as simple as folks withdrawing more money than banks anticipated, putting them briefly under the requirement. After all, banks facilitate hundreds of millions of transactions daily. No one can have perfect expectations of how much money will flow in and out daily.

The entire banking system operates with this in mind. If a bank falls below the minimum temporarily, it must then get its hands on more cash to hold in reserve. There are lots of ways it could do this, but among the fastest is the repo market. Now, this is where most discussions of the repo market generally start reading like paragraphs typed entirely in wingdings.[i] Stay with us!

Here is how the repo market works: Bank ABC needs reserves for a very short period until its reserves rebound above required levels. So it aims to borrow very short term (think: overnight or a week). Bank ABC could seek an unsecured loan from another bank with excess reserves in the fed-funds market. It could tap the Fed directly via its discount window, although this is generally reserved for banks that are in trouble—thus, it is generally frowned upon. Or it can tap investors like money-market mutual funds in the repo market. Using bonds like Treasurys as collateral, Bank ABC enters a loan contract with an investor or institution with extra cash on hand. That contract generally fixes a very small interest rate and states that Bank ABC will repay the loan and get its bonds back upon expiration of the contract. That is the repurchase the market is named for. Are you still awake? Anybody? Hello?

If you are still awake, grab a cup of coffee and we will cover last week’s events.

Because these transactions are so closely related to the fed-funds market, the US overnight repo rate typically tracks the fed-funds rate. Yet early last week—while nearly everyone was anticipating Wednesday’s 0.25 percentage point Fed rate cut—the repo rate shot higher. On Monday, it jumped to around 2.9% intraday—above the top end of the fed-funds target range. Tuesday, it shot up more—hitting as high as 6% intraday before closing at 3.4%. Exhibit 1 illustrates the overnight repo rate’s tendency to mirror the fed-funds target rate and last week’s unusual jump (using closing yields).

Exhibit 1: Repo’s Unusual Jump

Source: FactSet, as of 9/25/2019. US overnight repo rate and fed-funds target (upper limit), 9/24/2017 – 9/24/2019.

Spiking rates like this can signal that demand for cash is exceeding supply. But this isn’t necessarily a sign of broader trouble. Astute readers may notice some similar-yet-smaller spikes at points in the past. These typically cluster around quarter end, as corporations close the books. That seems to be one contributing factor in the current go-round, too, as corporate tax payments were due on Monday. Those are big outflows from money funds that may otherwise enter into repo contracts with banks.

Further, the Japanese market was closed for a holiday, implying a major source of funding wasn’t active in the market. Finally, the US government sold bonds early last week, which may have further drained cash from money funds and other liquidity sources. These are the technical factors pundits generally argue were behind the move—and those seem more or less correct to us. In response to this, the Fed stepped in as a source of liquidity, pushing rates back down toward the target by last Friday.

Beyond these technical factors, Fed policy also seems like a contributory factor. For years, the Fed hasn’t had to intervene in the repo market like this, as the banking system was awash in excess reserves. (Exhibit 2)

Exhibit 2: Excess Reserves Boomed During QE

Source: Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, as of 9/25/2019. Excess reserves, February 1984 – August 2019 (full data series).

These excess reserves stemmed from the Fed’s quantitative easing (QE) bond purchases and zero interest rate policy. When the Fed bought massive quantities of long-term bonds from banks under QE, it lowered long rates. Banks borrow short term to fund long-term loans. As a result, the gap between the two is a proxy for loan profitability. With short rates pinned near zero, lowering long rates made lending less profitable—an incentive for banks to hold cash. Further, the central bank began paying interest on excess reserves in 2008. These two factors are likely why US banks massively increased excess reserves post-QE.

Because excess reserves jumped so much, the repo market was flooded with cash. Hence, the Fed hasn’t had to intervene since 2008. But before then, such interventions were commonplace. (Exhibit 3) As Fed head Jerome Powell[ii] put it last year, the bank went from “actively” managing reserves pre-crisis to “passively” doing so post-crisis.

Exhibit 3: Fed Intervention in the Repo Market Is Old Hat

Source: Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, as of 9/25/2019.

But since 2014, the combination of the Fed’s tiny (and now stopped) QE unwind and rate hikes meant excess reserves were falling. While they are still lofty by historical standards, they don’t seem to be distributed evenly across all US banks—larger banks have the lion’s share. Yet they also have regulatory requirements to hold more high-quality assets as a safety buffer—a factor making them less likely to offer cash reserves in the repo market.

It appears to us the Fed was caught a little flat-footed by this. It was essentially out of practice! But in the subsequent days, it has seemingly regained its poise and control over short-term funding markets. Now many talk about creating a permanent facility to intervene in the repo market. Which, to us, is a little weird seeing as how the Fed was that facility before 2008. In that way, this looks like a return to normal policy pre-financial crisis.

Anyway, that wraps up our ‘splainer of the repo market. If you find yourself having trouble sleeping at some point in the future, by all means think of repo and trot this article out. It is probably about as effective as Unisom without the nasty feeling the next day.

Hat Tip: Michael Weston, Aaron Anderson and Christo Barker.


[i] Example: 

[ii] We resisted the urge to dub Powell “The Repo Man,” but will be ok if you want to do so.

Link: https://www.fisherinvestments.com/en-us/marketminder/everything-you-never-wanted-to-know-about-the-repo-market

If it occurs, impeachment likely wouldn’t end the bull market.

Editors’ Note: Our political commentary is non-partisan by design. We favor no party, elected official or politician and assess political developments solely for their potential economic or market impact.

With summer’s official end this past Monday, a chill isn’t the only thing in the morning air. Impeachment talk is, too. Late last week, reports emerged that President Trump pressured Ukraine’s president to investigate potential corrupt dealings involving former Vice President (and current presidential hopeful) Joe Biden’s son Hunter. House Democratic leaders claim this shows Trump collaborating with a foreign government to influence the 2020 election. They responded by formally opening an impeachment inquiry late Tuesday. Predictably, headlines are jam-packed with reporting, analysis, speculation and opinions, with some concluding impeachment is super meaningful for stocks. In our view, this is too hasty. While the drama may spur short-term market jitters, history shows impeachment isn’t necessarily negative for stocks.

In a sense, these latest developments aren’t new. Impeachment chatter has ebbed and flowed since roughly January 20, 2017, President Trump’s swearing-in. First it centered on alleged Russian collusion, then on alleged obstruction of justice and misuse of campaign funds. But yesterday, after more than three quarters of House Democrats joined calls for impeachment, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi directed the six committees investigating various Trump-related matters to continue doing so “under that umbrella of impeachment inquiry.”[i]

If you are looking for guesses about how this shakes out, winners and losers or implications for the 2020 presidential race, you have come to the wrong place. The situation is fluid, with fresh news, rumors and hot takes emerging seemingly by the hour. In our view, speculating about possible outcomes is a poor use of pixels right now.

As of this writing, a House impeachment vote isn’t scheduled. The next step is likely a heaping helping of testimony, hearings and fanfare, after which a simple majority vote would send Articles of Impeachment to the Senate. If it gets that far, a two-thirds Senate vote is required to convict and oust the president.

We are outlining possibilities here, not probabilities. Theoretically, both parties declaring this a hilarious misunderstanding and enjoying a good chuckle before returning to normal Congressional business is also a possibility.[ii] But markets move on probabilities, not possibilities. Based on what we know today, the probability of removing President Trump from office seems quite low. Since Republicans control the Senate by a 53 to 47 margin, Democrats would need 20 GOP senators to declare Trump guilty and remove him from office.[iii] If they did, we would all say hello to President Pence. Yet no Republican senators have come forward to support impeachment yet. Can they get those 20 senators? No idea, but presently it seems like a stretch. Moreover, impeachment isn’t politics as usual. A Republican-controlled Senate voted not to convict Democratic President Clinton. The bar is high.

Even if impeachment advances, history doesn’t indicate market doom necessarily awaits. There are only two data points to draw on since reliable US stock market data begin, and neither suggest stocks would automatically suffer due to impeachment. As Exhibit 1 shows, the S&P 500 endured the 1973 – 1974 bear market while the Watergate scandal erupted and eventually forced President Nixon’s resignation under threat of impeachment. The political turmoil likely heightened volatility, but there was plenty else to roil markets then—such as the Arab oil embargo, Nixon’s economically damaging price controls and the Nifty Fifty stock bubble bursting. With this backdrop, pinning all the blame on Watergate seems inaccurate to us.  

Exhibit 1: S&P 500 Surrounding Nixon’s Resignation

Source: Global Financial Data, Inc., as of 5/10/2017. Daily S&P 500 Price Index, 1/3/1972 – 12/31/1974.

Conversely, US stocks mostly rose during the Lewinsky scandal and President Clinton’s impeachment trial.

Exhibit 2: S&P 500 Surrounding Clinton’s Impeachment

Source: Global Financial Data, Inc., as of 5/10/2017. Daily S&P 500 Price Index, 12/31/1997 – 12/31/1999.

It isn’t as though the impeachment inquiry has snuck up on investors, either. Congress was already investigating—this new iteration is just extra official. Further, this drama will play out in public, likely mitigating surprise power. If an impeachment trial opens, expect nothing to get more coverage. Stocks will hear the noise and likely bake in all opinions, forecasts and arguments. Surprises move markets most—and those don’t look likely as of now. Of course, short-term volatility tied to sentiment swings is always possible. Rising partisan rancor could roil sentiment here and there. But that is true impeachment or no—and is normal for a bull market.

As election season heats up, fevered impeachment coverage plus campaign trail bombast could make this a tough time to keep political biases from influencing your investment decisions. But we believe it is critical to do so, as such biases are blinding and can spur terrible investment decision-making. So do your best to stay above the fray and view developments dispassionately—like markets.


[i] “Pelosi Announces Impeachment Inquiry of President Trump,” Natalie Andrews and Andrew Duehren, The Wall Street Journal, 9/25/2019.

[ii] Seem far-fetched? That is sort of the point of possibilities. It is also why speculating about them is seldom fruitful, in our view.

[iii] Two Independent senators, Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Angus King of Maine, caucus with the Democrats. Hence, we counted them as Democrats.

Link: https://www.fisherinvestments.com/en-us/marketminder/a-word-on-impeachment-and-stocks

Why Japan’s upcoming sales tax hike shouldn’t roil global markets.

On October 1, Japan’s consumption tax will rise from 8% to 10%—the long-awaited sequel to April 2014’s increase from 5% to 8%. The tax hike arguably adds a headwind to Japan’s few domestic demand drivers—problematic since exports, a major source of Japanese growth, have faltered this year. Hence, many fear the tax increase will hamstring Japan’s economy and weigh on already slow global growth. But while it may skew Japanese economic data in the near term, we don’t think the tax increase materially alters the global economy’s outlook.

Many point to the aftermath of April 2014’s tax hike to argue this one will take a big bite out of Japanese growth. Household expenditures fell a striking -17.7% annualized in Q2 2014, driving a -7.3% annualized GDP contraction.[i] But we don’t think those numbers tell the whole story. In our view, while not a positive, the sales tax increase mostly moved consumption around rather than deleting it. This is par for the course: When a sales tax hike is forthcoming, consumers frequently move up big purchases or stockpile beforehand. By the time it happens, many have already pulled the trigger on that new washing machine, electronic device or other gizmo.

Something like this seems to have played out in Japan in 2014. Consumption rose 8.1% annualized in Q1 before the tax went into effect, helping GDP surge 3.9%.[ii] After consumption tanked in Q2, it rebounded in Q3, rising 2.9% annualized.[iii] Granted, consumption hasn’t matched Q1 2014’s level since. But that is primarily a function of measuring from an inflated base, in our view, not evidence of the tax’s enduring effects. So should Japanese economic data look extra sunny in Q3 and then gloomy in Q4, we urge you to take both with a grain of salt.

The tax increase’s implications for the global economy and investors are likely minimal. The global expansion weathered Japan’s last tax hike and associated GDP contraction. World GDP growth actually accelerated in 2014—2.8% versus 2013’s 2.6%.[iv] Markets have also had years to anticipate this second tax hike and price in likely outcomes—particularly given heightened coverage ahead of the October 1 start. We rather doubt it still packs big negative surprise power.

Moreover, the government is attempting to cushion the impact this time. Mitigating measures include cutting auto taxes, keeping the 8% sales tax for food and other “daily necessities” and offering rewards points—effectively subsidies offsetting the tax increase amount—to payment service providers on cashless purchases. If the purchases are at small or independent retailers, that is extra points! As a result, most of consumers’ front-running seems focused on large discretionary purchases (think: furniture and electronics) and household essentials, perhaps mitigating both the pull-forward and hangover.

Even if the effect is more pronounced, we don’t think it materially alters the outlook for Japanese stocks. Big multinational exporters already looked better-positioned than companies reliant on domestic demand. Despite Japanese exports’ nine straight monthly declines—most recently August’s -8.2% y/y drop in value terms and -6.0% in volume terms—these major multinationals’ global supply chains and offshore manufacturing hubs make the figures less reflective of their fortunes.[v] If anything, weak Japanese data and investors’ jitters over the global manufacturing slowdown may have soured sentiment toward Japanese multinationals. If this undershoots reality, positive surprise potential could build.


[i] Source: FactSet, as of 9/19/2019. Quarter-over-quarter annualized Japan GDP growth and household expenditure growth, Q2 2014.

[ii] Ibid. Quarter-over-quarter annualized Japan GDP growth and household expenditure growth, Q1 2014.

[iii] Ibid. Quarter-over-quarter annualized Japan household expenditure growth, Q3 2014

[iv] Source: International Monetary Fund, as of 9/19/2019. Annual percentage change in  global GDP, 2013 – 2014.

[v] Source: Japan Ministry of Finance, as of 9/19/2019.

Link: https://www.fisherinvestments.com/en-us/marketminder/land-of-the-rising-consumption-tax

Note – Bloomberg: 5 things to start your day

And finally, here’s what Cormac’s interested in this morning

While U.S. stock bulls are enjoying an encouraging backdrop of positive economic surprises, their European counterparts are stuck with exactly the opposite. Citigroup’s economic surprise index for the euro zone, a gauge of whether economic data beats or falls short of analyst expectations, plunged to its lowest level since February last week after a slew of disappointing readings. Europe’s benchmark Stoxx 600 Index has had a reasonable correlation with the gauge over the last 12 months, suggesting stocks may come under pressure if economic data doesn’t start surprising to the upside.

Further signs of weakening sentiment came Tuesday, with business expectations this month in Germany falling to the lowest in a decade. The mood among factory executives was the main reason, with the Ifo institute, which compiles the sentiment report, saying the only direction was “downward.” The news is another blow to Europe’s largest economy after a report Monday showed factory activity is shrinking at the fastest pace since the depths of the financial crisis. With the benchmark Stoxx 600 Index still sitting on a year-to-date gain of 16%, it wouldn’t be surprising for the deepening gloom to soon translate to profit taking.

And finally, here’s what Luke’s interested in this morning

The U.S. stock market has a dependency issue: it can’t go up unless Treasury yields do too. That’s only a mild exaggeration. For the past two months, over 75% of days in which the S&P 500 has gained coincided with a rising 10-year Treasury yield. Prior to that, the year-to-date share of “stocks gain, yields rise too” was 55%. Why August as a demarcation line? Well, it’s when the 10-year yield cracked below 2% on the heels of the Federal Reserve’s commencement of an easing cycle. It’s also when investors began to really throw in the towel on the prospect for reflation over the next year, judging by the slimming spread between 10-year yields and the 10-year, one-year forward rate. For software stocks – the most important contributors to the bull run – it’s striking how much relative performance over the past year has been linked to bond-market dynamics. The thinking here is that falling yields reflect concern about future global activity, so stocks that have shown a structurally superior earnings profile (growth stocks, like software) are prized. If the equity market were to become a little more yield-agnostic, this would likely be a positive for risk bulls. Relying on rising yields to power the market higher amid a backdrop of deflating domestic confidence, an ongoing Fed easing cycle, an endless barrage of conflicting trade headlines, lackluster activity abroad, and now a potential impeachment of U.S. President Donald Trump would seem akin to swimming against the tide. The story of 2019 for the 10-year yield has been a tendency to trade in 20-basis point ranges then knife downwards. Perhaps a period of Treasury yields consolidating as earnings season approaches will give stocks a chance to craft their own narratives.

Hong Kong suffers one of the most violent days since protests started, China vows to continue opening its financial markets, and traders expect another Australian interest rate cut. Here are some of the things people in markets are talking about today.

Petrol Bombs and Tear Gas

It was one of Hong Kong’s most violent days since protests started more than three months ago. Police used a water cannon, rubber bullets and tear gas after protesters marched without permission on Sunday, while demonstrators set a train station entrance on fire and hurled petrol bombs in the city center. Emergency workers treated a number of injured people in the streets. The previous day thousands of people gathered to mark the fifth year since the city’s Occupy protests, at a rally that had been sanctioned by the city. Demonstrators took over roads and police said they used “minimum force” to disperse some who had charged at officers’ cordons. Meanwhile, Chinese officials are braced for more unrest on Oct. 1,  the 70th anniversary of Communist Party rule. Some frontline protesters say they’re ready to die for the pro-democracy cause.

China Opening

China said it would continue to open up its financial markets and encourage foreign investment amid reports the Trump administration is considering restrictions on fund flows to China. Bloomberg News reported on Friday the Trump administration is considering measures including delisting Chinese companies from U.S. stock exchanges, limiting Americans’ exposure to the Chinese market through government pension funds, and putting caps on the Chinese companies included in stock indexes managed by U.S. firms. The U.S. Treasury said on Saturday that the administration “is not contemplating blocking Chinese companies from listing shares on U.S. stock exchanges at this time.” As another round of high-level trade talks looms, a U.S. crackdown on capital flows would create a new pressure point in the economic dispute, and could cause disruption well beyond it.

Markets Lower

Stocks in Asia were set to start the week lower as investors weighed the latest signs of escalating trade tensions and awaited data on China’s economy. Friday’s news of possible limits on U.S. portfolio flows into the Asian nation hit exchange-traded funds focused on Chinese companies. Treasuries ended last week little changed with the 10-year yield at 1.68%. In China, it’s the final day of trading before the week-long national holiday. Financial markets and offices in Taipei will be closed Monday as Typhoon Mitag approaches.

To Cut or Not to Cut

Markets and most Australian economists expect the Reserve Bank of Australia to cut interest rates for the third time in five months on Tuesday. But the bank’s governor, Philip Lowe, is giving mixed messages. Traders see an 80% chance of the cash rate going to 0.75%, while 19 of 25 economists surveyed expect a cut. Their view is based on a cocktail of global risks, as well as rising unemployment and falling confidence at home. In a set-piece speech last week, Lowe acknowledged further cuts could well be required. But he also repeated three times that the economy is at a “gentle turning point” and likely to strengthen from here.

U.S. Whistle-blower

Congress expects to hear “very soon” from a whistle-blower whose complaint spurred an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee said. The process is proceeding even with Congress on recess and the timing of the whistle-blower’s appearance will depend on how quickly the security-clearance process for his or her lawyers can be completed, Democratic Representative Adam Schiff of California said in a TV interview. Trump detractors and defenders were out in force to make their case to the American people on Sunday’s political talk shows: Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s attorney, said: “This is not about getting Joe Biden in trouble, this is about proving that Donald Trump was framed by the Democrats.”

Info – Form and Function: Visualizing the Shape of Cities and Economies

Form and Function: Visualizing the Shape of Cities

The Industrial Revolution changed the form and function of cities. New patterns of work resulted in massive wealth and distinct advantages for certain regions. Urbanization emerged as a defining characteristic of this age.

During the latter part of the Industrial Revolution, Cambridge School economist Alfred Marshall looked at a particular question: why did certain industries concentrate in specific places?

Marshall argued that the local concentration of industry created powerful economies promoting technical dynamism and innovation.

This Chart of the Week highlights the spatial patterns and business relationships created at the urban scale. Marshall’s insights from the past help us understand present-day tech and media economies and the massive growth of urban regions.

The Logic of Concentration

Marshall observed that industrial concentration led to long-term tendencies such as increasing returns on capital and compounding regional advantages.

The heart of this observation is that knowledge resides within the companies that make up a particular industry. Over time, these companies can accumulate even more information and direct the flow of new and innovative ideas. This creates local specialization and increasing profits, while also concentrating success, knowledge, and wealth into one key locale.

He defined this pattern as a Marshallian Industrial District.

An Evolving Landscape: Four Patterns

Marshall’s work would later influence the work of Ann Markusen, who created a typology of three additional industrial patterns. The patterns identify what makes a city attractive or repellent to income-generating activities.

District Type: Description: Example:
Marshallian Industrial District This is a clustering of firms in a similar industry, operating within a certain geographic area. Social media marketing companies in San Francisco
Satellite Platform District A set of unconnected branches with links beyond regional boundaries, each part of its own globally oriented supply chain. Suburban neighborhoods
Hub and Spoke District An industrial sector with suppliers clustering around one, or several, dominant firms. Airplane manufacturer Boeing and the region of Seattle.
State-anchored District Industrial activities are anchored to a region by a public or non-profit entity, such as a military base, a university, or a concentration of public laboratories or government offices. Madison, WI and Columbus, OH are examples of university towns, as are many cities with large defense installations such as Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.

There are both benefits and problems—called “externalities”—associated with the spatial agglomeration of physical capital, companies, consumers, and workers:

Advantages Disadvantages
  • Low transport costs
  • A great local market
  • A large supply of labor
  • Increased chance of supply and demand for labor
  • Lower search costs and fast matching of products and labor
  • Knowledge spillovers between firms
  • Strong environmental pressures
  • High land prices
  • Bottlenecks in public goods (e.g. poor/overburdened infrastructure)
  • Corruption
  • High competitive pressure
  • Economic inequality

Clusters for a Digital Age

In the past, the physical constraints of an area defined the structure of cities. Now that so many companies are free from the shackles of producing physical goods, does geography still matter?

Researcher Marlen Komorowski re-examined the concept of clustering with this question in mind. Here are five types of media clusters identified in her research.

The Shape of Media Clusters

District Type: Description: Example:
The Creative Region A metropolitan region that provides advantages due to readily available infrastructures and institutions, and encourages the development of face-to-face interaction and collaboration networks. Berlin, Singapore, Amsterdam
The Giant Anchor A location defined by the activities of one or several large media institutions, which attract complementary firms to agglomerate. Similar to the hub-and-spoke cluster model. Seattle, (Microsoft, Amazon), and Cambridge (Harvard, MIT)
The Specialized Area A media cluster that is located either in a neighborhood within a big metropolitan area or in a small urbanized area. The Specialized Area is marked by a readily available, large pool of employees from a specialized field. Soho (London), Silicon Valley
The Attracting Enabler Determined by the location of certain facilities or resources that can be shared that enable media activities. Movie studios are a prime example. Los Angeles, Vancouver
The Real Estate This type of cluster is centered around office space, sometimes purpose-built for media and creative companies. This space can also include incubators / accelerators. Dubai Media City, Dublin’s Digital Hub

Four rationales drive these patterns: agglomeration, urbanization, localization economies. and artificial formation.

The Shadow of the Industrial Revolution

Alfred Marshall made the argument that local concentration of industry can offer powerful economies and technical dynamism and innovation.

We now see this pattern with the emergence of megacities that accrue the majority of the financial and knowledge returns. These megaregions set the perfect stage for dynamic economic exchanges between skilled labor, technology, and networks.

What does your city look like?

Full link: https://www.visualcapitalist.com/form-and-function-the-shape-of-cities-and-economies/

Share – Tuân theo những nguyên tắc này khi ăn kiêng, cô nàng mũm mĩm người Nhật giảm liền 11kg chỉ sau 4 tháng — Ngon 24h

Nhiều người phải công nhận rằng, thật khó để quản lý một chế độ ăn kiêng nghiêm ngặt. Nhưng nếu bạn thử áp dụng ý tưởng ăn kiêng giống cô bạn người Nhật sau đây thì chắc chắn hiệu quả thu lại sẽ thành công bất ngờ. Cô bạn này tên Chisa (tài khoản Instagram […]

via Tuân theo những nguyên tắc này khi ăn kiêng, cô nàng mũm mĩm người Nhật giảm liền 11kg chỉ sau 4 tháng — Ngon 24h

Nhiều người phải công nhận rằng, thật khó để quản lý một chế độ ăn kiêng nghiêm ngặt. Nhưng nếu bạn thử áp dụng ý tưởng ăn kiêng giống cô bạn người Nhật sau đây thì chắc chắn hiệu quả thu lại sẽ thành công bất ngờ.

 - Ảnh 1.

Cô bạn này tên Chisa (tài khoản Instagram @chi_eat_lover), từng không hài lòng, tự ti với thân hình hơi mũm mĩm của mình. Tuy nhiên, sau khi thử nghiệm những chế độ ăn mới, Chisa đã đúc rút cho mình một vài bí quyết ăn kiêng riêng. Do đó, chỉ sau 4 tháng, Chisa đã giảm được 11kg. Cô nàng cũng không quên chia sẻ những thực đơn và cách ăn kiêng của mình lên trang Instagram cá nhân để tạo thêm động lực cho bản thân.

Giờ thì cùng xem qua những nguyên tắc ăn kiêng của Chisa là gì để học theo cô bạn này nhé!

Đổi thứ tự thực phẩm cần ăn trong bữa ăn

Thứ tự các món ăn mà chúng ta ăn cũng có thể ảnh hưởng đến kết quả giảm cân. Chisa khuyên bạn nên suy nghĩ một chút trước khi bắt đầu bữa ăn để ăn kiêng theo đúng mục tiêu mà mình đã đề ra.

Cô bạn này thường bắt đầu bữa ăn với cà chua, tiếp đó ăn bơ, trứng luộc và canh củ cải. Cuối cùng, Chisa ăn thêm sandwich kẹp đậu phụ Takano với dưa chuột, mù tạt và trứng. Thứ tự ăn kiêng này được xác định theo chỉ số GI – Glycemic (chỉ số đường huyết của thực phẩm) theo mức độ tăng dần để tránh làm cơ thể thu nạp quá nhiều lượng calories không cần thiết.

Chú ý khi ăn thực phẩm giàu tinh bột

Có một số ngày, Chisa thường đi mua bánh mì về để ăn kèm cùng cà ri cho bữa sáng. Tuy nhiên, bánh mì vốn là một loại thực phẩm giàu tinh bột nên bạn cần đặc biệt chú ý khi thưởng thức.

Hãy kết hợp ăn kèm với dưa chuột, cà chua hay một đĩa salad ngập tràn rau xanh. Cuối bữa ăn, tráng miệng thêm bằng một cốc sữa chua sẽ giúp hệ tiêu hóa làm việc trơn tru và tránh gây dư thừa năng lượng trong cơ thể.

 - Ảnh 5.

Điều chỉnh thực đơn ăn tối cho hợp lý

Sau một ngày lỡ ăn uống có phần hơi quá đà một chút, Chisa khuyên bạn nên điều chỉnh menu vào buổi tối cho hợp lý. Những ngày này, Chisa thường ăn salad cá hồi hoặc bí ngô. Các món salad được cô nàng thay đổi thường xuyên với các loại sốt khác nhau để tạo hương vị ngon miệng hơn. Đặc biệt, Chisa cũng hạn chế tinh bột trong bữa ăn cuối ngày để giúp hiệu quả giảm cân diễn ra nhanh hơn.

Ăn vặt bằng những món lành mạnh

Nếu trong ngày cảm thấy quá đói, bạn tuyệt đối không được đụng tới những món nhiều giàu mỡ mà chỉ nên trung thành với những bát hoa quả dầm hay các loại hạt khô. Đây đều là những loại thực phẩm không chứa chất tạo ngọt, giàu chất xơ và vitamin nên giúp bạn nhanh cảm thấy no, xua tan cơn đói để dành thời gian vận động nhiều hơn.

Source (Nguồn): 39 Mag Benesse

Share – Món ngon cuối tuần: Lẩu cá chép giòn — Ngon 24h

Bạn cần chuẩn bị những nguyên liệu sau để nấu lẩu cá chép giòn: 1 con cá chép giòn 1kg 500gr xương ống Rau ăn kèm: Thơm, cà chua, rau muống, so đũa, súng, ngó sen, nhút, kèo nèo (tùy sở thích) Lá giang, măng chua, rau húng quế, ngò gai, rau ôm Bún. Gia […]

via Món ngon cuối tuần: Lẩu cá chép giòn — Ngon 24h

Bạn cần chuẩn bị những nguyên liệu sau để nấu lẩu cá chép giòn:

1 con cá chép giòn 1kg

500gr xương ống

Rau ăn kèm: Thơm, cà chua, rau muống, so đũa, súng, ngó sen, nhút, kèo nèo (tùy sở thích)

Lá giang, măng chua, rau húng quế, ngò gai, rau ôm

Bún.

Gia vị: Dầu ăn, đường, bột ngọt, ớt, tỏi băm, sa tế.

Món ngon cuối tuần: Lẩu cá chép giòn - Ảnh 1.

Cách làm:

Cá rửa cắt miếng vừa ăn.

Xương chặt nhỏ sau đó ướp với 2 muỗng cafe sa tế, 2 muỗng canh đường, 1 muỗng cafe bột ngọt, 1/2 muỗng cafe muối và tỏi trong khoảng 30 phút.

Món ngon cuối tuần: Lẩu cá chép giòn - Ảnh 2.

Rau nhặt sạch, rửa với nước muối.

Bắc nồi lên bếp. Nồi nóng cho dầu ăn sôi lên cho hành, tỏi vào phi thơm.

Món ngon cuối tuần: Lẩu cá chép giòn - Ảnh 3.

Tiếp đến cho xương đã ướp vào xào sơ để lấy nước ngọt.

Món ngon cuối tuần: Lẩu cá chép giòn - Ảnh 4.

Cho 2lít nước vào, nước sôi thì thêm lá giang, măng chua cùng thơm vào để lấy vị chua (ai thích chua nhiều cho thêm me).

Món ngon cuối tuần: Lẩu cá chép giòn - Ảnh 5.

Tiếp đến cho cá vào nêm lại cho vừa ăn sau đó cho rau vào là hoàn thành nồi lẩu cá chép giòn chua ngọt cực ngon!

Món ngon cuối tuần: Lẩu cá chép giòn - Ảnh 6.

Lẩu cá chép giòn ăn kèm với bún, thêm chén nước mắm ớt nữa là tuyệt vời lắm đấy!

Share – Đây là 6 nguyên nhân khiến bạn mệt mỏi cả ngày và 6 cách để khắc phục điều đó — Ngon 24h

Đã bao giờ bạn phải bỏ dở công việc hay thậm chí rời khỏi phòng họp vì quá mệt mỏi hay chưa? Nhất là những nhân viên làm việc văn phòng, nhiều khi chúng ta vẫn tự hỏi điều gì đã khiến cả ngày của mình mệt mỏi và buồn ngủ đến vậy? Hóa ra, […]

via Đây là 6 nguyên nhân khiến bạn mệt mỏi cả ngày và 6 cách để khắc phục điều đó — Ngon 24h

Đã bao giờ bạn phải bỏ dở công việc hay thậm chí rời khỏi phòng họp vì quá mệt mỏi hay chưa? Nhất là những nhân viên làm việc văn phòng, nhiều khi chúng ta vẫn tự hỏi điều gì đã khiến cả ngày của mình mệt mỏi và buồn ngủ đến vậy?

Hóa ra, có vô vàn nguyên nhân có thể khiến bạn thấy người mình “như đi mượn“. Một số trong đó là những điều “biết rồi, khổ lắm, nói mãi”, nhưng đáng tiếc là bạn ít khi để ý và thực hiện.

Nhưng cũng có những nguyên nhân khác mà bạn có thể lần đầu nghe thấy, chẳng hạn như một chứng bệnh hoặc nhịp sinh học của cơ thể. Vậy hãy cùng tìm hiểu:

Đây là 6 nguyên nhân khiến bạn mệt mỏi cả ngày và 6 cách để khắc phục điều đó - Ảnh 1.

Những nguyên nhân khiến bạn mệt mỏi và buồn ngủ cả ngày

1. Bạn không ngủ đủ giấc: Có lẽ bạn đã thừa biết điều này nhưng lại chẳng mấy khi thực hiện. Ngủ đủ giấc nghe thì đơn giản nhưng đề làm được thì không dễ một chút nào.

Bác sĩ Brian Murray, một nhà thần kinh học đang công tác tại Phòng khám Rối loạn Giấc ngủ, Viện Nghiên cứu Toronto Sunny Sunnybrook cho biết: “Hầu hết mọi người cần ngủ từ bảy đến chín tiếng mỗi ngày, nhưng họ đều chỉ ngủ ít hơn”.

2. Bạn không tập thể thể dục đủ, và không ăn uống đủ chất: Một lần nữa, đây là những câu trả lời nhàm chán mà bạn có thể đã nghe đi nghe lại rồi. Nhưng đáng tiếc, đó lại là sự thật.

Có vô số nghiên cứu chứng minh tăng cường hoạt động thể chất có thể giúp bạn cải thiện giấc ngủ và ngủ sâu hơn. Tương tự, các nghiên cứu đã phát hiện chế độ ăn nhiều trái cây, rau quả, protein, ít chất béo và sữa có xu hướng dẫn đến giấc ngủ ngon hơn.

Và bạn cũng có thể đã biết điều này, ăn đêm quá sát giờ đi ngủ cũng có thể phá hỏng khoảng thời gian nghỉ ngơi của bạn.

3. Tác dụng phụ của thuốc: Nếu bạn cảm thấy lúc nào cũng mệt mỏi và buồn ngủ khi đang điều trị bệnh, thì đó có thể là tác dụng phụ của thuốc. Nhiều loại thuốc có tác dụng phụ gây buồn ngủ bao gồm thuốc chống trầm cảm, thuốc huyết áp và đặc biệt là thuốc chống dị ứng.

4. Sự buồn ngủ tự nhiên: Hầu hết mọi người đều có một khoảng thời gian chùng xuống trong ngày, thời điểm mà bạn cảm thấy rất buồn ngủ. Đối với những người làm ca đêm, đó là khoảng từ hai đến bốn giờ sáng. Đối với người làm việc ban ngày, đó là khoảng hai rưỡi chiều.

Đó là hiệu ứng từ chiếc đồng hồ sinh học trong cơ thể“, bác sĩ Murray cho biết. “Mỗi một tế bào trong cơ thể bạn đều có một chiếc đồng hồ nhỏ bên trong mình, chạy qua các vòng thời gian nhỏ của chúng”.

Rất khó để có thể cưỡng lại được chiếc đồng hồ sinh học này, bởi vậy, bác sĩ Murray khuyến cáo tốt nhất mọi người không nên sắp xếp các công việc đòi hỏi tập trung cao độ vào các khoảng thời gian này.

Đây là 6 nguyên nhân khiến bạn mệt mỏi cả ngày và 6 cách để khắc phục điều đó - Ảnh 2.

5. Rối loạn giấc ngủ: Nhiều người mệt mỏi dù nghĩ mình đã ngủ đủ giấc, nhưng thực sự thì sao? Có thể giấc ngủ của họ vào ban đêm không thực sự là một giấc ngủ. Bởi nhiều rối loạn có thể làm giảm chất lượng giấc ngủ ban đêm của bạn bao gồm chứng ngưng thở khi ngủ, ngủ nông, bóng đè, ác mộng…

Nếu ban ngày bạn thường mệt mỏi đến mức thiếp đi vào những thời điểm không thích hợp như khi đang nói chuyện với bạn bè, khi đang lái xe… rất có thể bạn đã mắc một hội chứng gọi là ngủ rũ. Còn nếu bạn hoàn toàn không thể ngủ được vào ban đêm, dù đi ngủ từ rất sớm, có thể bạn đã mắc chứng mất ngủ.

Trên đây đều là những dấu hiệu cho thấy bạn nên đi khám.

6. Bạn đang mắc một bệnh nào khác: Trên thực tế nhiều người lo lắng đến mức google xem “Mệt mỏi cả ngày có phải là triệu chứng ung thư hay không?”. Nhưng đừng lo lắng quá, mệt mỏi một mình nó rất khó có thể là dấu hiệu của ung thư.

Mặc dù vậy, nó vẫn có khả năng liên quan đến một số bệnh khác. Cảm thấy mệt mỏi cả ngày đôi khi là một triệu chứng trầm cảm. Bệnh tuyến giáp cũng khiến người ta cảm thấy mệt mỏi. Ngoài ra, một số bệnh lý thần kinh như Parkinson cũng có thể gây thoái hóa vùng não kiểm soát giấc ngủ gây ra sự mệt mỏi cả ngày trời.

Điều gì xảy ra khi bạn không ngủ đủ giấc?

Một lần nữa, có thể bạn đã biết điều này, nhưng phải nhắc lại rằng thiếu ngủ sẽ tác động tiêu cực đến cả thể chất và tâm lý của bạn.

1. Bạn sẽ có tâm trạng tồi tệ: Giống với những đứa trẻ mới biết đi, khi không ngủ đủ giấc, những người lớn chúng ta cũng có thể trở nên cáu kỉnh, thường xuyên nổi giận một cách vô cớ và tựu chung lại là không hạnh phúc.

2. Mất tập trung: Đã bao giờ bạn phải bỏ dở công việc hay thậm chí là một cuộc họp giữa chừng vì kiệt sức chưa? Sẽ rất khó để tập trung và thực hiện các công việc đầu óc khi bạn không ngủ đủ giấc.

Điều này đôi khi có thể nguy hiểm: mất tập trung trong khi lái xe có thể dẫn đến tai nạn giao thông.

3. Nguy cơ mắc bệnh: Bác sĩ Murray nói rằng những người thiếu ngủ có xu hướng tăng trọng lượng cơ thể và có nguy cơ mắc bệnh tiểu đường và bệnh tim mạch cao hơn.

Tôi nghĩ rằng mọi người thường đánh giá thấp tác động của việc mất ngủ đối với sức khỏe tổng thể”, ông nói. “Nhưng sự thật là chúng ta dành tới một phần ba cuộc sống của mình để ngủ, vì vậy cơ thể chúng ta đã thích nghi để cần một giấc ngủ chất lượng”.

Làm thế nào để hết mệt mỏi?

1. Ngủ nhiều hơn: Bạn biết mà, đó là cách hiệu quả để giải quyết vấn đề. Cơ thể bạn mệt mỏi và nó cần nghỉ ngơi. Đừng ép mình làm việc quá sức.

Để có một giấc ngủ chất lượng, bạn sẽ cần một căn phòng đủ mát mẻ, đủ tối, đủ yên tĩnh, một chiếc đệm thật êm, gối cổ và gối ôm… Và tốt nhất là hãy tránh xa tất cả các thiết bị điện tử.

Tổ chức Giấc ngủ Quốc gia Hoa Kỳ giải thích rằng máy tính, điện thoại và các thiết bị khác ngăn chặn cơ thể bạn giải phóng melatonin, một loại hormone kích thích giấc ngủ. Các thiết bị này không chỉ làm bạn tỉnh táo hơn mà còn làm chậm giấc ngủ REM của bạn.

2. Tập thể dục nhiều hơn: Đừng lười biếng, đó là một sự thật mà bạn phải chấp nhận. Con người được thiết kế để vận động, và mức vận động ít nhất mà bạn nên dành ra trong ngày là khoảng 30 phút, và 60 phút với những người có công việc văn phòng phải ngồi nhiều.

3. Cân bằng chế độ ăn uống của bạn: Bạn cần phải ăn đủ chất qua một chế độ dinh dưỡng đa dạng các loại thực phẩm, nhiều rau, củ, quả, đạm, giảm béo và đường nếu cần thiết.

Đây là 6 nguyên nhân khiến bạn mệt mỏi cả ngày và 6 cách để khắc phục điều đó - Ảnh 3.

4. Tham khảo ý kiến bác sĩ về các loại thuốc đang sử dụng: Nếu bạn đang điều trị bệnh và có một loại thuốc làm bạn buồn ngủ, hãy trao đổi điều đó với bác sĩ.

Họ có thể cung cấp cho bạn một loại thuốc có dược lực tương đương nhưng không buồn ngủ, hoặc chí ít cũng thay đổi liều lượng hoặc xem xét chuyển bạn sang một phương pháp điều trị khác.

5. Uống cà phê: Điều này rất hữu ích trên một khía cạnh nào đó. “Một vài tách cà phê mỗi ngày có thể giúp cải thiện sự tỉnh táo của bạn”, bác sĩ Murray nói. “Nhưng caffeine không thể thay thế hoàn toàn cho giấc ngủ”.

Vì vậy, cà phê chỉ nên là một phương án dự phòng chứ không nên là phương án trường kỳ kháng chiến với tình trạng mệt mỏi của bạn.

6. Đứng lên thường xuyên hơn: Nếu là một người có công việc ít vận động như nhân viên văn phòng hay lái xe, điều cuối cùng mà bạn có thể làm dễ dàng là hãy đứng dậy thường xuyên hơn. “Đứng dậy là một trong những cách hiệu quả nhất để lấy lại sự tỉnh táo”, bác sĩ Murray cho biết. “Chỉ riêng việc thay đổi tư thế thôi đã có thể tạo ra hiệu quả lớn lên cơn mệt mỏi của bạn”.

Tham khảo Huffpost

Theo Zknight – Tri thức trẻ

Share – Mùa thu Hà Nội đừng lười nhác ru rú trong nhà, diện lên một chút ra phố rồi ghé ngay những tiệm cafe yêu đến phát hờn này đi chị em — Ngon 24h

Những ngày này, Hà Nội cứ vừa lạ vừa quen, kệ cho người ta nhăn mặt cau mày vì khói bụi thì đâu đó vẫn có chút hương thu len lỏi vào sâu trong xúc cảm của mỗi người. Năm nào mà chẳng có mùa thu, chỉ là đến sớm hay là muộn đôi chút, nhưng chưa từng […]

via Mùa thu Hà Nội đừng lười nhác ru rú trong nhà, diện lên một chút ra phố rồi ghé ngay những tiệm cafe yêu đến phát hờn này đi chị em — Ngon 24h

Những ngày này, Hà Nội cứ vừa lạ vừa quen, kệ cho người ta nhăn mặt cau mày vì khói bụi thì đâu đó vẫn có chút hương thu len lỏi vào sâu trong xúc cảm của mỗi người. Năm nào mà chẳng có mùa thu, chỉ là đến sớm hay là muộn đôi chút, nhưng chưa từng có ai bảo chán ghét mùa thu mà toàn thấy háo hức mong đợi để được loanh quanh phố xá hít hà mùi hoa sữa thoang thoảng, ăn những món thuộc về riêng mùa thu, và ngồi cafe hẹn hò với người thương của mình.

Sớm mùa thu đừng vội buồn ngủ, mặc váy xinh ra phố rồi ghé ngay những tiệm cafe yêu đến phát hờn này đi chị em - Ảnh 1.

Ở Hà Nội có nhiều nơi để “trốn” lắm, cafe hàng quán phải gọi là nhan nhản, rất nhiều chỗ độc đáo, đẹp lạ và thu hút khách ghé chơi. Thế nhưng, không phải quán nào cũng hợp với mùa thu, gợi cảm hứng chill với nắng vàng hanh hao và có nhiều góc “sống ảo”. Sợ bon chen đông đúc và ồn ào khi đến những quán nổi tiếng quen thuộc? Đừng lo, hãy ghé thử 3 tiệm mới toanh này xem, đảm bảo sẽ khiến chị em mê mẩn từ cái nhìn đầu tiên.

Cảnh báo: hình ảnh trong series “sống ảo” dưới đây ngoài đời thực còn đẹp hơn nhé các nàng, ai bảo cứ ảnh mạng là không tin được, cuối tuần rồi, dạo chơi thôi!

Laika Coffee 18 Hàng Cót

Sớm mùa thu đừng vội buồn ngủ, mặc váy xinh ra phố rồi ghé ngay những tiệm cafe yêu đến phát hờn này đi chị em - Ảnh 2.

Quán cafe vintage đậm chất thu, vừa mang nét cổ điển Hà Nội vừa có chút lãng mạn Hội An.

“Bắt sóng” chuẩn theo xu hướng cafe vỉa hè bình dân nhưng vẫn trang trí đẹp và nằm ở vị trí giao Hàng Cót – Hàng Mã khá dễ tìm, tiệm cafe có cái tên xinh xắn như một nàng thơ này là địa chỉ yêu thích của rất đông bạn trẻ Hà Nội. Mà đâu chỉ có thanh niên, cứ buổi sớm hoặc chiều tà, ghé Laika kiểu gì cũng bắt gặp nhiều cụ già và các bác trung niên ngồi cafe đọc báo, thảnh thơi trò chuyện bên ly trà chiều, nhã nhặn và đậm chất Hà Nội xưa.

Sớm mùa thu đừng vội buồn ngủ, mặc váy xinh ra phố rồi ghé ngay những tiệm cafe yêu đến phát hờn này đi chị em - Ảnh 3.

Những góc trang trí kỳ công và đẹp mắt ở Laika.

Quán được trang trí theo phong cách vintage, có menu đồ uống khá phong phú từ cafe cho đến trà – nước hoa quả, kèm cả bánh mì, bánh ngọt nên không khó để chiều theo sở thích của chị em. Cả 4 tầng đều có vô số góc sống ảo, với điểm nhấn là những bức tranh tường vẽ trên nền vàng y như một Hà Nội thu nhỏ, bàn ghế kiểu bao cấp và hàng loạt đồ vật trang trí từ thập niên 90. Không gian quán rất thoáng, 2 mặt quay ra phố cổ, bạn có thể dành cả buổi ngắm nhịp sống hối hả xung quanh.

Điều thú vị hút khách nhất ở Laika chính là chiếc ban công ở trên tầng 4 có view nhìn thẳng xuống đường ray phía dưới, chịu khó để ý giờ ngồi uống cafe là kiểu gì cũng chụp được một bức “sống ảo” để đời khi đoàn tàu Bắc – Nam chạy qua.

Quán cafe có góc ngắm độc đáo xuống đoạn đường sắt cũ kỹ chạy dọc phố Phùng Hưng.

Không chỉ thế, hoàng hôn ở nơi này cũng rất đẹp, toàn bộ ban công đều là không gian mở ngoài trời, có cả đèn lung linh buổi tối nữa. Chỉ cần một chiếc điện thoại có 1001 phần mềm và một bạn đồng hành có tâm, những bức hình đẹp mê mẩn sẽ nằm trong tay chị em ngay lập tức tại Laika!

Lofita tầng 5 số 14-16 Ấu Triệu

Nếu ghé thăm quán cafe có view đẹp nhất khu Nhà Thờ Lớn này lần đầu tiên, rất có thể bạn sẽ bị lạc, hoặc bị nhầm lẫn với chỗ khác, bởi đường lên Lofita hơi “phiêu lưu”. Mặc dù có tấm biển nho nhỏ ghi tên dưới tầng 1, nhưng bạn rất dễ bỏ qua vì lối vào trùng với một hostel.

Sớm mùa thu đừng vội buồn ngủ, mặc váy xinh ra phố rồi ghé ngay những tiệm cafe yêu đến phát hờn này đi chị em - Ảnh 7.

Diện tích không rộng lắm nhưng Lofita vẫn rất thoáng mát vì nằm trên tầng 5.

Nhân viên của Lofita luôn chờ sẵn ở dưới đường để giữ xe và hướng dẫn cho bạn. Đi qua quầy lễ tân của hostel, vào thang máy bấm tầng 5, sau đó tiếp tục đi bộ lên tầng 6, bạn sẽ thấy tên Lofita nhấp nháy đầy sắc màu hiện đại đón chào mình.

Quán có cả chỗ ngồi điều hòa mát rượi bên trong nhà dành cho những người không chịu được nóng, và khu ngoài trời đối diện thẳng với tháp chuông Nhà Hát Lớn, nơi được check in nhiều nhất tại Lofita. Chiếc ban công dài với dãy ghế cao như quầy bar sẽ mang lại cho bạn cảm giác cực chill khi ghé thăm Lofita vào một cuối tuần mùa thu ngập nắng, cảm giác như với tay ra là chạm được vào nhà thờ, thú vị quá đi chứ.

Sớm mùa thu đừng vội buồn ngủ, mặc váy xinh ra phố rồi ghé ngay những tiệm cafe yêu đến phát hờn này đi chị em - Ảnh 8.

Góc view đắt giá nhất Lofita, nơi cho ra đời hàng nghìn bức hình “sống ảo” sang chảnh.

Ở đây có các món đồ uống được pha chế hiện đại cùng list món ăn lạ mắt và hương vị cũng độc đáo. Tuy giá cả trung bình cho 1 món khá cao, từ 50-60k trở lên, song vẫn hợp với ví tiền số đông và xét đến việc sở hữu một lố hình sang chảnh ngay sát Nhà Thờ Lớn thì ai cũng khẳng định là xứng đáng! Lời nhắn nho nhỏ dành cho các nàng đó là nên ghé Lofita vào buổi tối, mọi thứ sẽ lung linh đẹp đẽ gấp trăm lần ban ngày.

Sớm mùa thu đừng vội buồn ngủ, mặc váy xinh ra phố rồi ghé ngay những tiệm cafe yêu đến phát hờn này đi chị em - Ảnh 10.

Athena 57 Trung Hòa

Nếu không muốn bon chen tận trên khu phố cổ thì hít thở không khí trong lành yên tĩnh tại Athena là một gợi ý không tồi. Nằm ở khu vực khá sầm uất giữa phố Trung Hòa, với diện tích 3 tầng rộng rãi, tiệm cafe mới toanh này vẫn còn lạ lẫm với nhiều chị em. Song, nếu ghé thăm Athena những ngày này, đã kịp thấy rất đông bạn trẻ kéo nhau đến thưởng thức đồ uống và chụp ảnh khắp mọi ngóc ngách trong quán.

Sớm mùa thu đừng vội buồn ngủ, mặc váy xinh ra phố rồi ghé ngay những tiệm cafe yêu đến phát hờn này đi chị em - Ảnh 11.

Đông khách nhưng không ai làm phiền đến ai, quán còn có cả giá sách khổng lồ với nhiều thể loại khác nhau, hợp để các nàng tìm một góc riêng êm ái tận hưởng mùa thu đang dịu dàng trôi qua.

Sớm mùa thu đừng vội buồn ngủ, mặc váy xinh ra phố rồi ghé ngay những tiệm cafe yêu đến phát hờn này đi chị em - Ảnh 12.

Tiệm cafe mới mở ở Trung Hòa sở hữu nhiều góc trang trí vừa đẹp vừa nhẹ nhàng, rất hợp để chị em ghé chơi, trò chuyện, chụp ảnh.

Với biểu tượng nữ thần chiến binh Athena nổi bật, style trang trí tại quán chủ yếu là tân cổ điển. Tầng nào cũng có những bức tranh tường khổ lớn vô cùng ấn tượng, được vẽ theo phong cách thần thoại Hy Lạp. Quán còn phân chia ra nhiều phòng với số lượng chỗ ngồi khác nhau, phù hợp với cả nhóm đông đúc hoặc đôi lứa hẹn hò riêng tư bên những ô cửa kính lãng mạn nhìn ra ngoài trời.

Sớm mùa thu đừng vội buồn ngủ, mặc váy xinh ra phố rồi ghé ngay những tiệm cafe yêu đến phát hờn này đi chị em - Ảnh 14.

Rất nhiều điểm ấn tượng ở đây khiến Athena được dự đoán sẽ hot trong thời gian tới.

Điểm cộng dành cho Athena là nhân viên xinh xắn, nhiệt tình, phục vụ nhanh, không gian quán sáng sủa, thơm tho, rộng rãi. Giá đồ uống khoảng 50-60k/ món, bánh ngọt 40k/ chiếc, hương vị ổn. Quán không cấm chó mèo nên các nàng có thể vô tư mang boss cưng lên ban công tầng 2-3 để chụp hình “sống ảo”, còn gì tuyệt vời hơn phải không nào?

Ẩm thực – 7 Foods That Can Fight Inflammation Right Now

Keep these on your plate, to help your body stay healthy.

The 7 Best Foods for Fighting Inflammation

The following story is excerpted from TIME’s special edition, 100 Most Healing Foods, which is available in stores, at the Meredith Shop and at Amazon.

Inflammation is our body’s healthy response to fighting disease. But when it gets out of hand, inflammation can become chronic and lead to a whole host of health problems, from autoimmune diseases to cancer.

Foods high in sugar and saturated fat are thought to contribute to inflammation, which is why some people who have inflammatory conditions and autoimmune disorders try out low-sugar diets. On the flip side, there are also foods to pile onto your plate that may actually tamp down inflammation. Read on for the latest science on anti-inflammatory options, plus how to enjoy these picks.

Bell peppers

How to eat them: Chop up bell peppers and serve them with hummus or drizzled with a little red-wine vinegar, salt and pepper.

Why they’re good for you: Bell peppers—especially the bright-red ones—are high in antioxidants and low in starch. Similar to spicy peppers, sweet bell peppers contain the chemical compound capsaicin, which is known to help reduce inflammation and potentially even pain.

Pears

How to eat them: Slice up pears and add them to a salad with walnuts and a soft cheese.

Why they’re good for you: If you’re concerned about inflammation (say, if you have arthritis or diabetes), eating high-fiber foods like pears is a natural way to fight the problem. Fiber-rich diets contribute to a healthy microbiome and promote satiety—helpful when trying to lose weight.

Wow! How to Make Poached Pear Bread
Bring Poached Pear Bread to the table and get ready for the oohs and ahhs. Slice in to reveal the lovely pear inside, and brace yourself for applause! The bread is remarkably easy to make, we promise.

Mackerel

How to eat it: This fish is a Mediterranean staple. Roast a fillet of mackerel (or the whole fish if you’re adventurous) with a generous helping of herbs, olive oil and lemon.

Why it’s good for you: The high fat in mackerel helps fight diseases characterized by high inflammation, like heart disease and Alzheimer’s. Mackerel is also a source of vitamins B12 and D, the latter of which can be hard to find naturally in foods. Vitamin D is important for maintaining strong bones and immune-system function, as well as helping the body absorb calcium.

Spinach

How to eat it: Make a spinach salad with a high-fat food like avocado in order to take full advantage of the veggie’s nutrients.

Why it’s good for you: Spinach deserves its reputation as a power food. It is a good source of vitamin E, which may help protect the body from inflammation-causing molecules called cytokines. The dark color lets you know that it is nutrient- dense, like other leafy greens.

Black tea

How to drink it: Black tea tastes great on its own as well as with a bit of milk and honey, or you can add some lemon and pomegranate juice for a refreshing beverage.

Why it’s good for you: Green tea usually gets all the attention, but black tea (which comes from the same plant) also has benefits. Drinking black tea may help keep arteries open, and it contains antioxidants that are known to protect cells from damage. One study linked black tea to a substantially lower risk of ovarian cancer.

Buckwheat

How to eat it: Buckwheat is used to make soba noodles, which you can get in grocery stores and use in soups. You can also buy the grain on its own and eat it in place of rice.

Why it’s good for you: Eating grains may reduce blood levels of a marker for inflammation called C-reactive protein. Buckwheat is also gluten-free, making it a safe option for people with celiac disease (double-check labels, though).

Pomegranate seeds

How to eat them: Many grocery stores sell prepackaged pomegranate seeds, but if you want to start with the full fruit, cut it in half and spoon the seeds into a bowl to munch on or add to salads.

Why they’re good for you: Pomegranate seeds are a good source of antioxidants that can lower both cholesterol and blood pressure. In fact, experts think that a compound in them called punicalagin targets inflammation in the brain, which could help slow the progression of brain-related decline.

By Alexandra Sifferlin

Full link: https://www.cookinglight.com/syndication/anti-inflammatory-foods?cid=437167&did=437167-20190928&mid=24935809751&utm_campaign=ckl-daily_newsletter&utm_content=092819&utm_medium=email&utm_source=cookinglight.com