Henrylito D. Tacio

325 posts
top view of calamansi

The different health uses and benefits of calamansi

When it comes to harvesting citrus fruits, the Philippines never falls short – especially with the wealth of citrus selections that can be grown locally. However, while a wide variety of citrus fruits are harvested annually, there’s one type that’s almost always a staple in every Filipino household: calamansi.

Mushroom: An almost perfect food

NOT really a vegetable, the mushroom is among the most nutritious and popular foods. The ancient civilizations of Egypt, Rome and China knew of the importance of edible mushrooms as food. Egyptian pharaohs zealously kept the mushrooms for their own use, decreeing it was too delicate for commoners.

Are eggs good for your health?

THE big question that still baffles man: Which comes first, the egg or the chicken?  Most scientists say, the chicken. Those who argue that it’s the egg say it has something to do with Adam being created first. Either way, egg production is now one of the most progressive animal enterprises in the Philippines, according to the Bureau of Agricultural Research, a line agency of the Department of Agriculture.

TB: Still deadly as ever

LOOK, who’s Afraid of TB? President Duterte, that’s who. “I’m 74 years old. I do not want to die of TB [tuberculosis]. I do not want to die of lung cancer,” he said in a speech delivered before TB experts during the 7th Union Asia Pacific Regional Conference.

For health’s sake, stop using plastic

PLASTICS, which used to be one of the most useful discoveries of modern society, has become today’s scourge. They come in handy, light, malleable, unbreakable and cheap. Name it and there is always a plastic counterpart of it.  Unfortunately, the price to pay is higher than its actual cost.

Dengue cure is coming while cases surge

During the National Research and Development Conference 2019 convened by the Department of Science and Technology at the Philippine International Convention Center, a team of researchers reported that they are already doing the Phase 1 clinical trials on a herbal medicine that can hopefully cure dengue.

Natural allies against cancer

‘CANCER remains a national health priority in the country with significant implications for individuals, families, communities and the health system,” states the Philippine Cancer Control Program (PCCP) of the Department of Health.

This health threat called Mercury

THE Geneva-based World Health Organization (WHO) considers mercury, a silvery metal in liquid form, as “one of the top 10 threats to public health.” A naturally occurring element in the Earth’s crust, mercury is one of the world’s most toxic metals. It is released into the atmosphere with natural events such as volcanic activity.

Don’t die of drowning!

Statistics don’t lie.  A study conducted in the Philippines from 2006 to 2013 showed some 3,276 people die each year of drowning and submersion.  It is the second-leading cause of death among children aged 14 years and below.

The Looming Water Crisis

THE Philippines is touted to be a water-rich country. “We are an agricultural country, and that says a lot regarding the importance of water supply,” Senator Grace Poe, who is again running for the Senate, said in a recent statement. “We have provinces that have year-round sufficient water supply, enabling their farmers to plant and harvest year-round, as well.”

What to do when there’s fire

WHEN I was 18, I learned the value of knowing what to do in an emergency. It was 4:30 in the morning, and my 12-year-old sister Elena was too excited about a school field trip the next day to sleep. She had been asked to bring rice for her classmates, so she got out of bed and headed for the kitchen of our home while the rest of the family was still sleeping.

Beating Cancer By Really Trying

It starts as a single cell and grows into a merciless disease that claims millions of lives year after year. Cancer, as the disease is called, is now one of the leading killers around the world. It accounts for 6 million or 12 percent of deaths globally, according to the Geneva-based World Health Organization (WHO).

Breast Cancer and how to prevent it

HOLLYWOOD actress Ingrid Bergman was reading a magazine that featured an article on breast cancer. As she was already 58 years old at that time, she tried to conduct a self-breast examination when she discovered a lump. This was in 1973 and she just got a very important role in Murder on The Orient Express. She finished doing the movie, and in 1974, she went to a clinic in London where she was diagnosed of having a breast cancer.

Botulism is rare but deadly

Three years ago, a few days before Christmas, the Food Safety News carried a news item stating that a Filipino-branded smoked mackerel wasn’t eviscerated in New York.  As such, it may be likely that it could contain spores that cause botulism poisoning.

Take precautions, It’s flu season

SANDRA, a bank teller, was very lively that night. After all, she was just promoted in her department. She partied and dined.  When she returned home, she immediately went to sleep.  But the following day, she felt flattened—as if ambushed from behind—with a 39- to 40-degree fever, headache, extreme fatigue, weakness, and severe aches and pains in her muscles. She went to the doctor. “You’ve got flu,” she was told.

Lupus: When your enemy is yourself

BWhat do celebrities like Cindy Frey, Toni Braxton, Lady Gaga, Nick Cannon and Seal have one thing in common? Lupus, the disease that President Ferdinand E. Marcos reportedly died from complications of. Just recently, the disease was in the spotlight again when Kris Aquino posted in her social media that she may have it or a very similar condition.

Drinking too much soft drinks may lead to kidney trouble

Everybody loves soft drinks, including children.  But they are not really good for your health. In fact, those who have a penchant for drinking the sugary sodas are at risk of having kidney disease. A soft drink typically contains carbonated water, a sweetener and a natural or artificial flavoring.  The sweetener may be a sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, fruit juice, a sugar substitute or some combination of these.

Watch out for Pneumonia

‘There is a pneumonia outbreak here in the Philippines,” the post cautioned. The warning was posted in the social media by a person whose two friends reportedly died of it. Two others were confined in the hospital as both also suffered from the lung infection.

Gasping for breath

HEALTH experts are concerned about the growing incidence of asthma all over the world. According to the Geneva-based World Health Organization, the current number of people suffering from asthma is between 100 to 150 million. Worldwide, deaths from this condition have reached over 180,000 annually.

Shake off that salt habit this 2019

HAVE you ever observed how people smother their French fries and popcorn with salt? And how Filipinos, particularly those from the North, reach for salted fish even if their viand had already been cooked with a dash of salt?  Or do you have this habit of dipping that pre-salted fried or grilled meat in soy sauce or Calamansi or Philippine lime with (again!) salt? If you do, hold it! You may be salting your life away.

When young people get high wrongly

‘Drug abuse has ruined many lives,” declares Dr. Willie T. Ong, an internist-cardiologist and consultant at the Manila Doctor’s Hospital and Makati Medical Center.  “The threat of illegal drugs is real, and it’s closer than we think.  In the Philippines, the drug-abuse situation has actually increased over the years.”

For your health’s sake, eat bananas!

AN apple a day may keep the doctor away, but a banana a day may keep high blood pressure (known in medical parlance as hypertension) at bay. This is good news, as Filipinos suffering from hypertension are increasing in number, and most of them are walking time bombs that can explode anytime with serious hitches.  

Is there poison in your food?

THIS coming Christmas season and New Year celebration, one of those that are always present on the food tables is a loaf of bread. Equally important is the peanut butter, a modern-day food obsession that goes on the bread. Both can be bought on the sidewalks.

Why do we dream?

‘WHEN Jacob reached a certain place, he stopped for the night because the sun had set.  Taking one of the stones there, he put it under his head and lay down to sleep. He had a dream in which he saw a stairway resting on the earth, with its top reaching to heaven, and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it.”

Why do we age?

During a beauty contest held in a historic hotel in Manila a couple of years back, the host asked one of the contenders: “How do you see yourself 10 years from now?”  With confidence, she replied, “I am now 18, plus 10. I will be 28!”

A fight against vitamin A deficiency

THE soul, fortunately, has an interpreter—often an unconscious but still a faithful interpreter—in the eye,” wrote Charlotte Bronte in her famed Jane Eyre. Marcus Tullius Cicero had the same view when he said: “The face is a picture of the mind with the eyes as its interpreter.”

Breast Cancer: Women’s enemy no.1

Among Asian countries, the Philippines has the No.1 incidence of breast cancer.  “Three out of 100 (Filipino) women will get breast cancer before age 75 and one out of 100 will die before reaching 75,” an official of the Philippine Society of Medical Oncology reported.

Managing Diabetes

Antonio M. Ajero, the editor in chief of Edge Davao, could no longer remember the symptoms but he was diagnosed with diabetes after the free annual examination that was offered by the University of Mindanao.  He was then the station manager of dxMC, a radio station of the UM Broadcasting Network.  This was in 1978.

Suicide snatches one life every 40 seconds

TEACHERS are supposed to be pillars of education but some of them were making headlines recently for committing suicide. There was Emylou Malate, a 21-year-old grade-school teacher of Bagacay West Primary School in La Paz, Leyte.  She reportedly committed suicide by hanging herself.

Foods to lull you to sleep  

Does it often take you more than 30 minutes to fall asleep at night? Or do you wake up frequently during the night—or too early in the morning—and have a hard time going back to sleep? When you awaken, do you feel groggy and lethargic? Do you feel drowsy during the day particularly during monotonous situations?

Sex and your health

‘LIFE without sex,” declared Henry Louis Mencken, “might be safer but it would be unbearably dull. It is the sex, which makes women seem beautiful, which they are once in a blue moon, and men seem wise and brave, which they never are at all. Throttle it, denaturalize it, take it away and human existence would be reduced to the prosaic, laborious, boresome, imbecile level of life in an anthill.”

Hope for children with cancer

I was reading a magazine some years ago and I came across a quotable quote, which said: “To provide them with brighter future, give them hope.”  I have already forgotten who said those words and in what event, but the statement came to mind when I think of Dr. Mae Concepcion J. Dolendo.

Why light at night is bad for your health

IN the beginning, God created day and night.  Genesis 1:3-5 recorded: “God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light.  God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light ‘day,’ and the darkness he called ‘night.’ And there was evening, and there was morning – the first day.”

Colon Cancer Afflicts Filipinos, Too!

WHAT do these famous people have in common: President Corazon C. Aquino, entertainer Steve Allen, former evangelist Tammy Faye Bakker, poet Donald Hall, American President Ronald Reagan, actress Audrey Hepburn, professional golfer Ben Hogan, philanthropist Albert Lasker and NBC commentator Jay Monahan?

Understanding Colonoscopy

‘COLONOSCOPY saves lives,” declares Dr. James McKinnell, university assistant professor who also works at the Los Angeles BioMedresearch Institute in California. “The benefit is a reduction in the risk of death.”

Hypothyroidism: Too little thyroid hormone

THE thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped gland—measuring about 2 inches across—found just below the Adam’s apple. “The thyroid gland secretes thyroid hormones, which control the speed at which the body’s chemical functions proceed [metabolic rate],” notes The Merck Manual of Medical Information. “Thyroid hormones influence the metabolic rate in two ways: by stimulating almost every tissue in the body to produce proteins and by increasing the amount of oxygen the cells use.

Diseases on the rise

Flooding, volcano eruptions, earthquakes, strong typhoons and water crisis. As if these are not enough, the world has to brace itself as temperature rises to double what has been projected by climate models.

Hypertension: Hidden Epidemic

Every person needs blood pressure. Without it, blood can’t circulate through the body, giving vital organs much-needed oxygen and food. Under normal conditions, your heart beats about 60 to 80 times a minute. Blood pressure—or BP, as it is commonly known—rises with each heartbeat and falls when the heart relaxes between beats.

Possible solution to forthcoming food crisis

THERE is a lot that happens around the world we cannot control,” American politician Jan Schakowsky once said. “We cannot stop earthquakes, we cannot prevent droughts, and we cannot prevent all conflict, but when we know where the hungry, the homeless and the sick exist, then we can help.”

Top 10 healthiest fruits

What do banana, apple, citrus, strawberry, papaya, grape, watermelon, coconut, avocado and pineapple have in common? They are the top 10 healthiest fruits, according to Dr. Willie T. Ong, an internist-cardiologist who was given the Outstanding Filipino Physician Award by the Department of Health in 2007.

The rise of kidney problems

TEN years ago the kidneys of Elisa started to deteriorate as a result of the disease she had since she was still a teenager. By 2005 she had a chronic kidney failure and was into a program of dialysis three times a week. Since dialysis treatment is a long process, she thought of getting a kidney transplant.

Tips on how to manage stress

WE live in a dog-eat-dog world. It’s a busy life: daily chores, multitasking, several appointments at one time, too many parties to attend, business meetings and family affairs. If all of those happen within a day, the result is stress.

Health woes under the sun

Two days ago, Arman went out bike riding later than he normally did. Instead of biking at either 6 or 7 a.m., he did it at 10 a.m. this time—and on an extremely hot day. He went to the path he usually followed normally two to three times a week. Since it was a holiday, he biked a little farther than normal.

A fruit fit for summer

THINK back to when you were a child and, when during the summer months, the pinnacle of cookouts and family gatherings was always the cold, juicy watermelon that was for dessert. When you were young, eating watermelon was about taste. 

Coffee: Now, the good news

FOR those of us who wake up to the aroma and flavor of that morning brew, the evidence is in: Coffee, in moderation, is not bad for you after all. In fact, some studies indicate it may even have some health benefits.

Kidney problems on the rise

GO out and ask random people of what medical problem they fear most, and they would most likely answer “a stroke” or “a heart attack.” “Many don’t realize that developing kidney failure can be just as disabling and life-threatening,” says Dr. Rafael R. Castillo, a cardiologist at the Manila Doctors’ Hospital.

The health wonders of ginger

‘GINGER is among the healthiest (and most delicious) spices on the planet. It is loaded with nutrients and bioactive compounds that have powerful benefits for your body and brain.”—Joe Leech in, an article published in the newsletter Healthline

Rabies a terrifying ordeal

On a sunny Monday morning, 12-year-old John arrived early at school in Bansalan, Davao del Sur.  When he opened his classroom door, a stray dog that had wandered into the building the day before jumped up, bit his right arm and ran off.

Rabies deadlier than ever

Dogs, touted to be man’s best friend, account for 98 percent of rabies infection in the Philippines (cats account for the remaining 2 percent). And despite the campaign of the Department of Health (DOH) to vaccinate all dogs, rabies remains to be a public health problem.