Diane Leopard discusses inspiring photo project on UK Health Radio

Diane Leopard 3.jpgFHT Fellow Diane Leopard was recently interviewed for UK Health Radio to discuss a photography project she has launched to raise cancer awareness and help support those affected.

Interviewed by UK Health Radio’s Jenni Russell for the Her Health and Happiness show, Diane told her how she had purchased a camera with prize money from winning an FHT Excellence Award in 2015.

She then joined an adult education class to learn how to use the camera and was required to complete a final project about ‘a journey’. Diane decided to use this opportunity to reflect on her own personal cancer journey, by taking outdoor photographs that were symbolic of the different stages of her cancer journey and the emotions she had experienced.

1 castle Northumberland_low_res.jpg

Diagnosis – This picture of Dunstanburgh Castle, Northumberland represents how Diane felt when the consultant told her that she had breast cancer. In the foreground of this picture you can see people going about life as normal while Diane’s life came tumbling down.

After presenting the project to her classmates, Diane was overwhelmed by the response and felt compelled to expand the project, first taking it into a local hospice and Pink Sisters, a breast cancer support group. Diane has since given a talk at a Stoke-on-Trent FHT Local Group meeting and has spoken to hospice staff on several occasions about the emotional impact of cancer and how they can help to support clients/patients.

In the interview Diane goes on to talk about her journey with cancer, how her life became uncertain after a diagnosis, and discusses the meaning behind each photo.

Speaking about the project, Diane says, “As a complementary therapist working with cancer patients I thought I understood cancer but nothing had prepared me for the emotional impact of a diagnosis. Since then I have taken a series of nature photographs to represent the emotional impact of cancer called ‘Focus on Emotions’. This represents not only my story but also emotions and feelings that have been shared by many other cancer patients all with different stories to tell and my family.  The images are natural, unedited other than the occasional crop and not staged.  They are often everyday scenes for example sunrise, sunset, flowers, beaches things most of us have experienced.  During the presentation I explain at little bit about each image and why I chose it. I then let the  audience have a few moments to reflect on what the image means to them.

4 tunnel of treatment_low_res

Tunnel of treatment, this is a poisonous laburnum arch with purple allium flowers standing tall and strong below. The laburnum represents chemotherapy and the allium are the medical staff who care for patients during treatment. The light at the end is where everyone hopes to be after treatment. Taken at the Dorothy Clive Gardens.

“I deliver the talk and exhibition to health care professionals, cancer patients, work colleagues and the general public. I want people to understand the devastating emotional impact cancer has on lives.  If people can have an insight to our emotions I am convinced that cancer patients will have an improved quality of treatment and recovery.  Cancer changes lives but that’s not always a bad thing.  I now see the beauty that surrounds us all yet many of us take for granted.

“The response from health care professionals, cancer patients and the public has been amazing, it has resonated with so many people.  Comments have included: – ‘that is one of the best presentations I have ever heard’ and ‘thank you, you’ve helped me to understand what my father must have gone through’.

“By looking at these images people seem to able to relate to their own emotions which may be cancer related or relate to other difficult life experiences such as bereavement, divorce and life changing illnesses.”

Listen to the full interview here

In addition, Diane has also published guest blogs on the project, highlighting her work on various websites, including Baba Baboon and Ticking Off Breast Cancer.

The National Massage Championship supports competitors from the moment they register

National Massage Championship_low_res

The National Massage Championship returns to Olympia London on Sunday 29 and Monday 30 September. Hosted by Olympia Beauty, the competition, now in its second year, is the only UK competition of its kind.

Sponsored by The FHT, Massage World, CityLux and Massage Warehouse, the competition continues to go from strength to strength, with an incredible line-up of judges and a Facebook Group set up to support the competitors from the moment they register.

Head judge for the competition this year is Susan Findlay alongside international judges Jeppe Tengbjerg, Ryan Hoyme, Meghan Mari, Earle Abrahamson, The FHT’s very own Vice President, Mary Dalgleish and others.

Susan has lead the competition into a new arena with video content supporting the competitors from the moment they think about entering the competition. Questions like ‘How can you judge massage?’ ‘What is the National Massage Championship?’ and ‘What are you going to get from competing?’ are answered in short videos by Susan, Earle and Mary. There are also judges’ Top Tips, to give competitors a better understanding of what they will be looking for at The National Massage Championship this year.

To watch the videos please visit @thenmclondon on Instagram. 

The competition invites all qualified massage therapists and bodyworkers from the UK to compete for a trophy or two across six competition categories.

These include:

  • SPA/Wellness Massage
  • Freestyle Massage
  • Eastern Massage
  • Chair Massage
  • Advanced Massage
  • Swedish/Deep Tissue Massage

It’s okay to have questions! 

If you’d like to discuss the competition before entering then please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Organisers Kate from Citylux and Carl from MassageWorld, alongside Olympia Beauty’s Laura and Ian are all ready to answer your questions and help guide you through the competition. Reach out via one of their social channels or email laura.tarling@olympiabeauty.co.uk for further information.

Save 30% on your place in the competition! 

Simply register before 30.06.19 and use the code FHT2019 to save 30% on your place!

Go to www.olympiabeauty.co.uk/thenmc

Facebook: @TheNMCLondon

Instagram: @thenmclondon

Three top tips for getting referrals from GPs

Practising GP, Dr Toh Wong, gave therapists insightful advice on getting referrals from GPs at the 2019 FHT Training Congress. We had the pleasure of meeting up with Dr Wong after the talk, where we asked him for his three top tips for getting referrals from GPs.

Find out more about future CPD opportunities with the FHT at www.fht.org.uk

Quote of the week

Summer.jpg

Today is the first day of summer in the Northern Hemisphere and the longest day of the year.

Speaking of summer in the Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald says, “And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.”

What’s your favourite summer saying?

Protein reduces the risk of frailty in older women

nuts-3248743_1920.jpg

Adequate intake of protein is associated with a reduced risk of frailty and prefrailty in older women, according to a new study from the University of Eastern Finland and Kuopio University Hospital. Adequate protein intake was defined as at least 1.1 g per kg of body weight. The findings were published in European Journal of Nutrition.

Frailty is a multidimensional condition common in older adults, and those affected are at an elevated risk of dependence and mobility loss, fall, fracture, multimorbidity and mortality. Evidence shows a strong link between frailty and malnutrition, and protein may be the most important nutrient at play, mostly through its effect on muscle health. The Nordic Nutrition Recommendations (2012) suggest protein intake of 1.1-1.3 g per kg of body weight as adequate for preserving physical capacity in older adults. However, there is a paucity of data regarding the association of protein intake with frailty. The newly published study examined associations between protein intake and protein sources with frailty status in older women.

Participants were 440 women aged 65-72 years enrolled in the Osteoporosis Risk Factor and Prevention–Fracture Prevention Study. Their protein intake in g per kg of body weight was calculated using a three-day food record at baseline in 2003-2004. At the three-year follow-up in 2006-2007, frailty phenotype was defined as the presence of three or more, and prefrailty as the presence of one or two of the following criteria: low grip strength, low walking speed, low physical activity, exhaustion (defined using a low life satisfaction score), and weight loss of more than five per cent.

The study shows that getting the recommended amount of dietary protein was associated with a lower risk of frailty and prefrailty in older women. Moreover, the consumption of animal protein was associated with a lower likelihood of frailty. The recommended protein intake (1.1-1.3 g per kg of body weight) for an older person weighing 70 kg corresponds to a minimum intake of 77 g of protein. To illustrate, the protein content of a chicken breast per portion is 25 g, one boiled egg 6 g, and two slices of whole grain bread 6 g.

‘The public health recommendation is to eat an optimal diet with an adequate intake of protein. Adequate protein intake is important for muscle health and, according to the new results, may also prevent frailty. However, further research is still required in this area,’ Senior Lecturer Arja Erkkilä from the University of Eastern Finland concludes.

Source

Image

Insomnia and loneliness may be reduced with physical education

sport-3891579_1920_low_res.jpg

Physical education classes in school could reduce insomnia and feelings of loneliness in children, according to a study.

The above findings  were from a gender analysis of the impact of physical education on the mental health of schoolchildren in Brazil, published online by the open access journal, SSM – Population Health.

Scientists analysed data from more than 40,000 ninth grade (14-15-year-old) children from 3,160 schools across Brazil. The children were asked to complete a questionnaire, which included questions on whether they attend physical education classes, feel lonely and have difficulty sleeping.

The results showed that physical education reduced loneliness and insomnia in both boys and girls, but had a greater effect on boys. It has what the researchers call ‘a protective effect on mental health’.

Access the full study

 

What are the benefits of myofascial dry cupping?

It was a pleasure to once again work with Dawn Morse at this year’s FHT Training Congress. Dawn delivered a talk on the integration of dry cupping within sports and massage therapy and we asked her to tell us briefly about the benefits of the therapy.

Dawn is the founder of Core Elements, running FHT Accredited training courses, and has written articles for International Therapist on runner’s knee and snapping hip syndrome.

Find the latest training courses with FHT at fht.org.uk/training