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Showing posts with label Educational. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Educational. Show all posts

Oxford English Dictionary recognises some Nigerian English words

VANGUARD HEADLINE | Posted: Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Oxford English Dictionary
My English-speaking is rooted in a Nigerian experience and not in a British or American or Australian one. I have taken ownership of English.

This is how acclaimed Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie describes her relationship with English, the language which she uses in her writing, and which millions of her fellow Nigerians use in their daily communication. By taking ownership of English and using it as their own medium of expression, Nigerians have made, and are continuing to make, a unique and distinctive contribution to English as a global language. We highlight their contributions in this month's update of the Oxford English Dictionary, as a number of Nigerian English words make it into the dictionary for the first time.

The majority of these new additions are either borrowings from Nigerian languages or unique Nigerian coinages that have only begun to be used in English in the second half of the twentieth century, mostly in the 1970s and 1980s.

One particularly interesting set of such loanwords and coinages has to do with Nigerian street food. The word buka, borrowed from Hausa and Yoruba and first attested in 1972, refers to a roadside restaurant or street stall that sells local fare at low prices. Another term for such eating places first evidenced in 1980 is bukateria, which adds to buka the -teria ending from the word cafeteria. An even more creative synonym is mama put, from 1979, which comes from the way that customers usually order food in a buka: they say 'Mama, put...' to the woman running the stall, and indicate the dish they want. The word later became a generic name for the female food vendors themselves-Nobel Prize-winning Nigerian playwright Wole Soyinka notably includes a Mama Put character in one of his works.

The informal transport systems that emerged in Nigeria's huge, densely populated cities have also necessitated lexical invention. Danfo, a borrowing from Yoruba whose earliest use in written English is dated 1973, denotes those yellow minibuses whizzing paying passengers through the busy streets of Lagos, the country's largest city. Okada, on the other hand, is first attested twenty years later, and is the term for a motorcycle that passengers can use as a taxi service. It is a reference to Okada Air, an airline that operated in Nigeria from 1983 to 1997, and its reputation as a fast yet potentially dangerous form of transport, just like the motorcycle taxi.

A few of the Nigerian words in this update were created by shortening existing English words. One example is the adjective guber (earliest quotation dated 1989), which is short for 'gubernatorial'-so Nigerians, for instance, would call a person running for governor a 'guber candidate'. Another frequently used clipping with a longer history in English is agric. It was originally used in American English around 1812 as a graphic abbreviation for the adjective agricultural, but is now used chiefly in this sense in West Africa. In the early 1990s, agric began to be used in Nigeria to designate improved or genetically modified varieties of crops or breeds of livestock, especially a type of commercially reared chicken that is frequently contrasted with 'native' (i.e. traditionally reared) chicken. Two decades later, Nigerian students also started to use the word as a noun meaning agricultural science as an academic subject or course.

Five mistakes you make while charging your phone

~Punch Nigeria. Thursday, May 25, 2017.

Many phone users tend to complain that their device's batteries discharge quickly. They also typically blame the product manufacturer for this issue. However, the manufacturer isn't always at fault. Here are five mistakes that users typically make when charging their phones:

Waiting for the battery to reach low levels before charging
Avoid waiting for your battery to reach a critically low level before charging. The effect of this on the phone battery is not immediate, but over time it begins to manifest and it eventually stresses out the phone battery (yes, batteries get stressed too) and shortens the battery life. Think of your battery as a human body, you really don't need to wait until you're about to die before you rest and eat to recharge yourself.

Keeping your phone case on while charging
Your phone typically emits heat when charging. To avoid exposing your device to ambient temperatures, it is advisable to remove the phone case while charging so that the heat emitted from the phone while charging can escape. This way, you can prevent your device from becoming hotter and potentially overheating when charging. Charging your battery at uncomfortable temperatures can permanently damage the battery capacity.

Charging your phone in the wrong places
You should mind where you charge your phone, because not doing so can negatively affect the battery capacity. Phones have a temperature range for which they can function normally and charging your phone in a hot area can raise the temperature and stress the battery out. In addition, charging your phone in especially low temperature areas, like in front of an air conditioner, can also cause problems for your battery that will eventually affect its optimum performance.

Twins from different fathers in one womb

Written by Sola Ogundipe
~Vanguard Nigeria. Sunday, January 15, 2017. 

Siblings can have different fathers; can twins born of a woman have two fathers? The straight answer is yes. Twins could be "bipaternal." This phenomenon occurs quite rarely (1 in a billion to be exact), but several pairs of non-identical twins have been born, tested and found to be the products of one womb, one pregnancy, but two fathers.

It is often assumed that for twins, both eggs were fertilized during a single act of intercourse. However it is quite possible for one egg to be fertilized during one act of intercourse, and the other during another if the woman has intercourse with two men within hours.

Normally, women ovulate only one healthy egg per cycle. Fraternal twins are born when women ovulate two healthy eggs and both get fertilised. But it is also possible for two eggs to be ovulated during the same cycle and fertilised at different points within the five-day fertility window resulting in twins. This process is known as "superfecundation". What this means is that each egg can be fertilised by different sperms.

If a woman ovulates two or more eggs and she has sex with more than one man while she's fertile, "heteropaternal superfecundation" can occur, if the eggs get fertilised by sperm from the two different fathers within the same ovulation period.

Medical research shows that when a woman has sex with two men within the same ovulation window, it can result in bi-paternal twins, that come when a woman releases two eggs during ovulation instead of one - and both eggs are then fertilized.

9ja rules! "Wahala dey o"! - Popularising the Naija Language: 5 things to be thankful for if you live in Nigeria


  • Popularising the Naija Language
  • 5 things to be thankful for if you live in Nigeria
  • Is there anything wrong with following instruction? Who is wrong here, the Ticha or the student?
  • "My own don spoil today!!!"
  • "Wahala dey o"!
  • 9ja in the life beyond!

Popularising the Naija Language

Using the word “pidgin” to describe the speech pattern or its written version commonly referred to as broken English in days gone by or stylishly named “rotten English” by Ken Saro Wiwa in his novel Sozaboy is no longer fashionable nor accurate –so concluded language scholars at the IFRA (Institut Francais de Recherche en Afrique) Nigeria-organized conference on the Nigeria Pidgin held at the University of Ibadan in 2009.

The conference rose with the firm resolution that the Nigerian Pidgin is currently well developed enough in terms of widespread usage, identifiable orthography and communicative propensity to shed the derogatory connotation of the term pidgin and wear a new respectable toga to be known as Naija. Several measures were suggested to further popularize the Naija Langwej in its current standardized version, among which was its use in literary writings.

The poet, Eriata Oribhabor, was an active participant at the said conference, where he presented a paper on “The Use of Naija in the Media, Arts and Entertainment” and it is, therefore, logical for him to attempt to creatively present the newly renamed Naija langwej in 50 poems of varying length and subjects in a collection entitled Abuja Na Kpangba An Oda Puem –dem .The arrival of the collection, with its catchy title, echoes many other iconoclastic efforts by notable poets in the past in their attempts to make us take the then pidgin seriously as a language of creativity. One recalls Aig-Imouekhuede’s Pidgin Stew and Sufferhead (1982),Ken Saro Wiwa’s long pidgin poem “Dis Nigeria Self” in his collection Songs In a Time of War(1985), Mamman Jiya Vatsa’s Tori For Geti Bow Leg(1985),Ezenwa Ohaeto’s I wan Bi President(1988) and If To Say I be Soja(1998) as signposting the land-marking usage of the Nigerian Pidgin in literature.

All the aforementioned books were received by the reading public for their public spirited themes and particularly for their use of a language with mass appeal –the language of the people.

Abuja Na Kpangba An Oda Puem-dem, though following in the footsteps of the rich traditions of Pidgin poetry of the earlier writers, makes a strong case for taking the form seriously in terms of conforming to the grammar and stylized standards of the Naija langwej. Beyond the pioneers identified above, contemporary writers usually switch on to pidgin as a kind of second rate attempt at creating humour which they erroneously think pidgin is best for and can be done as solely defined by the capacity and exposure of any writer. Thus we see varied orthography, some of them outlandish and mostly led by the ear and generally appearing like twisted English in many of the pieces presented as Nigerian Pidgin in contemporary Nigerian literature, whether it is drama, prose or poetry.

In Abuja Na Kpangba…, the corrective and pioneering venture of the poet Eriata in showcasing the new way the hitherto Nigerian Pidgin now Naija should be written is noted in the “Edito Mesej” by David Esizimetor prefacing the poems thus: “dis koleshon of puem speshal bikos na im bi di fest naija langwej buk we dem poblish wit di niu spelin sistem we bi Standad Naija Otografi(SNO) we Naija Langwej Akedemi(NLA)aprov.” After that, the poet plunges into the wonders and the contradictions of the city of Abuja in the title poem entitled Abuja na hevun,na kpangba where he writes: Abuja na ples!/ wen you land/ yu go wonda weda/ na Naija yu de?/ yu go de luk ayanyan/ yu go de hala laik se/ yu wan kolo/ yu go se/ “abi no bi Naija bi dis?”/ “abi na obodo oyibo bi dis?”

In another poem the poet asks: “Wich Landa Broda?” as a post-colonial critique of history as written or perceived by the colonizers, not sparing the internal colonialists, too: Abuja don te/ Gbagyi don de/ bifo Abuja kom de
na so i bi.// Naija don te/ awa pipul don te/ bifo Naija kom de/ na so i bi.//
Na so wi de/ Dem se na Landa Broda/ Dat na wait lai/ Wich Landa Broda?
In poems, such as “A get sista” and “Wich neshon yu bi?”, the poet explores family themes and upbringing resonating with the boy-girl child dilemma as it affects both parents. In the first poem, we witness a mother with so many boys already pining for a girl: “No bi boi bi di tin/na gel mama want/bot na boi” ; while in the second poem we encounter a disciplinarian father dealing with his horde of boys: “Papa pas soja/i gada os laik gels/haus no get gels/i no wan hie.”

The poems in the collection traverse the wide range of subjects any poet can muster, ranging from socio-political concern, love, treachery, ribaldry ,urban tales, class dichotomy to simple display of street lingo or credibility which is never in short supply in the arsenal of the form on which the collection is built.

What is however very noticeable in Abuja Na Kpangba is the assured manner in which the poet is able to navigate the varied subjects using Naija(Nigerian Pidgin) without being verbose and with refreshing turn of phrases in virtually all the poems that give the reader a feeling of reading Pidgin like it has not been written before. And in places where the poet quarries deep into the lingo of Naija, as spoken in maybe Sapele-Warri axis considered as the native speaking area of the language, footnotes not glossaries are generously supplied to aid comprehension by non-native speaker. For example, in the poem “Na fo haus yu swim?”, mocking pretentious child upbringing by parents, who themselves were very free as children, the poet pens thus: Wi du am fo sansan/ Baf fo sansan/ Swim fo dambadamba/ Kach ogoro,kuk feri fud/ Ple,jomp an laf. (italics mine).

In explaining some uncommon words in the above smippet from a much longer poem, the poet supplies footnotes indicating that sansan means “sandy ground”,dambadamba as “stagnant pool of rain water collected in dugout sand pits”,ogoro as “frogs” and kuk feri fud as “cook imaginary play food.”The most obvious change in the orthography a lay reader of the collection will notice in relation to earlier forms of the Nigerian Pidgin he or she may have come across is in the spelling and pronunciation of the letters or words i and a . The letter i in very many pidgin renditions sounds as or pronounced as a as in i dey kampe (apology to Olusegun Obasanjo of i -still –dey- laugh fame).In Abuja Na Kpangba, the written form of i and the pronunciation is close to that of the letter e as used in context in the poem “Abuja na hevun,na kpangba”: “Abuja na di ples!/na di veri ples/i de kamkpe no bi lai.” Compare that to the use in the poem “A arenj” which goes thus: “A de kamkpe/a arenj/a si pepe,a sabi/a arenj, etc.”
Eriata Oribhabor has definitely achieved a crescendo in Abuja Na Kpangba in the sheer exhibition of the mastery of Naija(Nigerain Pidgin), as he passionately weaves piece after piece, showcasing the viability of the language in expressing our humanity and the endless pleasures that lie in speaking in one’s own tongue;in this case the Naija Langwej.

The book from the content page to the blurb is written in the Naija langwej which is commendable except for the page on about the author at the very end which is written in straight English and one wonders why that oversight?And you readers must wonder too why this review was written in English and not in the Naija Langwej or at least in Nigerian Pidgin. I guess it will take a long time before we will be able to settle the language question in our literature and the coming of Abuja Na Kpangba has added a fresher dimension to the unending discourse.
Denja Abdullahi, former National General Secretary, Association of Nigerian Authors, is Deputy Director, National Council for Arts and Culture, Abuja.

5 things to be thankful for if you live in Nigeria
~Vanguard Nigeria. Sunday, December 18, 2016. 

It's been a rough year for Nigeria. From the hike in the price of the dollar to increase in the cost of food and living, there have been a lot of reasons to feel discouraged about the giant of Africa. Many have become fixated on big-picture worries and so, take for granted all the little facets of life that deserve appreciation.

Believe it or not, Nigeria is still a pretty great place to live. And to bring a major boost to your overall happiness. Jumia Travel shares some things you can be grateful for if you live in Nigeria.

Jollof Rice

How to manage abdominal pain in children

Written by Dr Rotimi Adesanya
Web: www.doctoradesanya.
~Punch Nigeria. Friday, November 11, 2016. 

Dr Rotimi Adesanya
Most children complain of abdominal pain (or stomach ache) at one time or another. While there may be no cause for alarm in most cases, parents should take such children to the hospital if the pain is severe and persistent or if such children seem generally unwell.

Causes of stomach ache
The term 'stomach ache' is casually used for all types of pain experienced in the abdominal area, but anyone who has suffered it knows that one stomach ache can be different from another. Not only can a stomach ache occur high up under the ribs or down low in the guts; its intensity varies.

Stomach pain in children is often caused by excessive gas and indigestion, which might not be a serious issue. A 'sore tummy' may also be a sign of infections like food poisoning, gastroenteritis, pneumonia or urinary tract infections.

Severe stomach pain might be caused by more serious or surgical illnesses like appendicitis or intussusceptions, which is when part of the gut slides into or over itself. Pain in the stomach that keeps coming back might be associated with constipation, food intolerance or inflammation in the gut.

The symptoms that come with stomach pain may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, fever, constipation, bloating and loss of appetite. These symptoms vary, depending on the underlying cause of the pain.

Signs your feet might be giving you

~The Sun Nigeria. Thursday, October 27, 2016.

When your feet ache after a long day, you might just put the blame on your shoes. After all, many people say their shoes hurt. But sometimes, the pain may not come from our shoes, not even from the sky-high heels some women put on, all in the name of fashion.Pain or any other condition of our feet that's is not due to our type of foot wear may arise from different health issues.

Do not ignore your feet, take time to note every new detail.What you observe can give you a clue to your state of health. Here's signs your feet might be giving you:

Swollen Feet: This is common and usually not cause for a major concern particularly if one has been standing/sitting too long, embarked on a long journey or is pregnant. On the contrary, feet that stay swollen can be a sign of a serious medical condition. The cause may be poor circulation, high blood pressure, toxic overload, hormonal issues, water retention, a problem with the lymphatic system, or a blood clot. Heart, liver, kidney disorder or under active thyroid can also cause swelling.

Cold feet:The most obvious cause of cold feet is the surrounding environment. When the temperature gets colder, people routinely experience problems with cold extremities. However, there are several different medical problems that can cause cold feet as well.Many cardiovascular concerns, diabetes, poor blood flow, circulatory problem, high blood pressure, heart disease, hypothyroidism, anemia maycause cold feet.No matter the underlying cause, cold feet can be uncomfortable, not just to you but also your partner. For instance, it can make your partner shriek when your toes touch his or her so-warm legs.

Burning Feet:Unlike cold feet, this is the sensation that your feet are painfully hot. Often times, I hear people say, they feel pins and needles in their feet. That's the sensation with burning feet. The sensation may be described as similar to an electric shock which could make walking uncomfortable for the sufferers. Burning of the feet may also be accompanied by numbness. And just like the needle and pin sensation, numbness in the feet can cause problem in walking. In this case, there may be a balance problem, as the sufferer may not really feel the feet moving or touching the floor. Often, burning sensations in the feet is due to some kind of damage or dysfunction in the nervous system. The problem is sometimes associated with diabetes, HIV/AIDS, chronic alcohol abuse and exposure to certain toxins.It can also be caused by a vitamin B deficiency, athlete's foot, chronic kidney disease, poor circulation in the legs and feet or hypothyroidism.

Foot sores:That will not heal are a major warning sign for diabetes. Diabetes can impair sensation in the feet, circulation, and normal wound healing, so even aninsect bite could become a troublesome wound. Those sores also are prone to infection. Slow-healing of sores also can be caused by poor circulation from conditions such as peripheral artery disease.

Foot cramps:Are contractions of the muscles of the feet. Cramps are usually brief, but they can be severe and painful.During an episode, one will definitely feel the muscle contracting rapidly and violently. The person may even be able to see it.Overwork and muscle fatigue are common causes. Other causes include poor circulation, dehydration, imbalances of minerals – potassium, magnesium, calcium, or vitamin D levels in the body. The changing hormone levels of pregnancy, thyroid disorders and the use of certain medications may all play a role.

Understanding pain

Written by Dr. Sylvester Ikhisemojie
~Punch, Nigeria. Sunday, June 26, 2016.

Pain is an intense and unpleasant feeling which occurs at some part of the body usually as a result of injury or disease. It is frequently localised in some part of the body and that enables it to be easily characterised with the specific part of the body as a reference point. Occasionally, however, it may also be generalised. It is conveyed to the brain by various sensory neurons where it is interpreted and the level of its intensity determined. Pain can thus be definitely pointed out to relate to a painful finger for example or a painful ankle.

It may also refer to some emotional distress or mental condition such as when an individual has been publicly humiliated. This type of pain leaves one with deep psychological effects. Sometimes, pain may be specific in making reference to a particular condition such as childbirth or hunger or may refer to a situation in which real care or effort has been expended in bringing to fruition a particular situation such as in describing a painstaking operation.

This essay, however, is about those kinds of pain that are physically felt in relation to certain conditions or associations that may be related to injury or disease. This refers to particularly unpleasant situations like stomach pains or the pain of arthritis and the effects of a fracture occurring in any of the bones of the body. Pain is a frequent condition seen in various forms in all branches of medical practice. The treatment of the various types differs accordingly. Today in many western countries, the management of pain in its various manifestations has become a huge industry. In the United States for example, there are more than 80 million people who suffer pain in one form or the other and are thus in need of various types of medications to control their distress.

As a result, this has evolved into a huge pharmaceutical industry as well with the potential for the abuse of some of these medications. In many cases, such abuse has taken a malignantly dependent form with sad sequelae resulting. There may be addiction or the tragedy of loss from resulting misuse of such medicines. That is a problem even in those nations that have a strict regime of dispensing and procuring medications. In our country where one can obtain almost any drug without a prescription, and across any kind of counter no matter the place, one can imagine the potential for addiction and death.

I made N3,000 hawking water in 20 minutes - White Naija Girl

~PUNCH, Nigeria. Sunday, May 15, 2016

Popularly known as White Naija Girl, Ibukun Afolabi, from Hungary tells ARUKAINO UMUKORO why she decided to hawk sachet water on the streets of Lagos

Can you give a brief background of yourself?

My husband gave me a Nigerian (Yoruba) name, 'Ibukun,' which means 'blessing.' I am originally from Hungary. I live in the United Kingdom at the moment. In 2008, I came to the UK, where I met my husband, Gbenga Afolabi of MagnumN3. I studied Business and Management. I also hold degrees in German and French languages. When I first came to the UK, I could not speak English, so I had to start learning it from the beginning.

In 2012, I decided to start ­a blog, the, soon after I got married. Initially, I wanted to write a book, but my husband advised me to start a blog instead so I could reach more people. I started to write about my experiences as a 'Nigerian' wife. Soon, many people - men and women – in relationships with Nigerians started to contact me, asking different questions. The blog became quite successful. Finally, I visited Nigeria in the middle of October last year. I stayed for a month. It was during that period that the video of me selling sachet water was shot.

Was your visit to Nigeria in October your first trip to the country?

Yes it was. But here in the UK, I have had contacts with a lot of Nigerians. The church I attend in the UK is predominantly a Nigerian church. I have always been inspired by Nigerians and their way of living. I love the culture, food and their attitude to life. I also love it that Nigerians take education seriously. My husband is a film-maker and I produce most of his films. When we came to Nigeria; that was when I noticed how hard people in Nigeria are working and how much they needed to struggle on a daily basis to earn a living.

What was the inspiration behind the video of you selling pure water and drinks on the streets of Lagos?

It is because I saw these people doing this every day for a living. And I wondered why they had to live like that in a rich country like Nigeria. That 'pure' water video was done because I wanted to experience what Nigerians are going through, to empathise with them and to go through what they are going through. I realised that it is really hard. And I wanted people to know about this. In the UK, when you have a child, you get child benefits. In Nigeria, there is nothing like that. It is difficult for the women hawking 'pure' water. It is really a difficult job. I wanted to raise awareness about their plight. These people need help from the government. They don't have to risk their lives on the road doing such a job. That was purely my inspiration. It was a great experience, I felt their struggle, because it was hot, you could see me sweating. The load was very heavy. At the beginning, I could not take off the bowl from my head. It was hurting my head even though I had the scarf on. I am planning other projects to raise more awareness about the difficulties every day people face. For me, what I did (selling pure water) was not so extraordinary. What is extraordinary is that people are doing this job daily for a living.

That thing (bowl of sachet, bottled water and drinks) on my head felt so heavy and I only carried it for less than an hour. But those people who do it for a living actually do that for about eight to 10 hours a day. They are the real heroes, not me. I did it for less than an hour because we attracted a little too much attention so we could not carry on. And that was at the time the police were really after people selling on the streets. So, we were a little cautious so as not to get into trouble.

Were you scared at any point?

Spanking can harm your child's mental health

Written by Bukola Adebayo
~Punch, Nigeria. Friday, May 6, 2016

Agreed that a verse of the Bible says, "Spare the rod and spoil the child". And it will be wrong to disobey instructions from above. However, the Holy Book does not say you should use the rod to harm the child.

Many parents, caregivers and guardians use the rod to harm children in an attempt to 'discipline' them. Such incidents bring up the moral and logical question on the role of the rod in parenting.

Science may have provided some insights and answers to the puzzle. After collecting and evaluating the results of a 50-year-old study, researchers announced the troubling and yet enlightening result of spanking in kids, either for correctional or punitive purposes.

The study, published in this month's Journal of Family Psychology, reveals that the more children are spanked, the more likely they are to defy their parents; experience anti-social behaviour; express aggression, suffer mental health problems and cognitive difficulties.

The scientists evaluated the research which involved over 160,000 children across the globe.

The lead researcher and associate professor of human development and family sciences at the University of Texas at Austin, Elizabeth Gershoff, described the result as the most accurate and evidence-based analysis that has showed the effects of spanking alone in many years.

Gershoff says, "Our analysis found that spanking was associated with unintended detrimental outcomes and was not associated with more immediate or long-term compliance, which are parents' intended outcomes when they discipline their children."

Scholar and co-author Andrew Grogan-Kaylor links spanking with 13 of the17 negative outcomes in children and adults.

"The upshot of the study is that spanking increases the likelihood of a wide variety of undesired outcomes in children. Spanking thus does the opposite of what parents usually want it to do," Grogan-Kaylor says.

Birth control practices

Written by Dr Sylvester Ikhisemojie - The Punch, Nigeria.

Sylvester Ikhisemojie
In much of Africa today, there is a burgeoning population made possible by explosive birth rates and the endurance of a majority youthful population. This has many evident positive advantages, not the least of which is the presence of a virile population of people in the productive age group.

The obverse in the problem here is that feeding this large population and finding adequate jobs for the large population will remain a challenge well into the twenty first century. It therefore means that efforts must now be made from this time forwards, in all countries of the region, to slow the rate of population growth to more manageable, more sustainable levels.

As a result, it is incumbent on health authorities throughout the region to teach women of all socio-economic groups about the immense benefits of birth control and child spacing. It is because of all these interwoven facts that issues of contraception and other efforts at birth control must now be examined and propagated.

While birth control and contraception do not necessarily mean the same thing, both of them are geared towards controlling the appearance of unwanted pregnancies. This is because it is possible to engage in birth control without engaging any means of contraception to achieve this aim. Our focus today must therefore centre on birth control. With this clarification, it can be seen that birth control practices will not always involve the use of means, devices and medications to avoid pregnancy occurring but can in fact be achieved naturally by following the natural rhythm of the body itself.

This means that birth control and contraception make up what is known as family planning. As a result, it is important for us to examine some of these methods.

Why people have bad breath in the morning -Study

Written by Tunde Ajaja- Nigeria. 

When it comes to personal hygiene, apart from body odour, there are a few other things that can be as repulsive as having a bad breath, or simply put, mouth odour. Even the sound of it is distasteful, and not only does the smell nauseates, it goes ahead to present such a person in bad light, giving a vivid impression of a dirty human being. It could sometimes make the individual a lone ranger as people try to avoid such persons.

But as disgusting as bad breath is, it is amazing to find that most people experience it every time they wake up; mostly in the morning. It is also known as halitosis. In fact, it could be as repulsive to the owner of the mouth, not to even talk of others. Noteworthy is the fact that this case is independent of the chronic mouth odour, the product of which could make the listener (victim) puke.

Therefore, it is not uncommon to find that when people wake up in the morning, they tend to avoid close contact discussion, or better still maintain some distance or even cover their mouth while talking to others. The simplest cure would be to have a toothbrush. It could cure it all, only if done properly.

An expert in dental matters and periodontist, Sally Cram, said, "Everyone has morning breath to some degree. Here is the simple reason why: When you sleep, your mouth dries out and your normal flow of saliva decreases. When your mouth dries out, odour-producing bacteria multiply. That is why your breath can be worse in the morning."

However, for those who do not have mouth odour but wake up to find that they have bad breath, studies have shown that the trend is basically traceable to the fact that when a person is asleep, the mouth also goes into rest mode, leading to a drop in the rate of metabolic activities. And this form of bad breath is not limited to aftermath of waking up, it also happens when people close their mouth for too long without opening it.

What your eye colour says about you


There's more to eye color than meets the...eye. For one, contrary to what you may have learned in grade school, there's more than a single gene involved, which is why your specific hazel hue can look so vastly different from your daughter's, says Rachel Bishop, MD, chief of the consult service section of the National Eye Institute. Though as with skin pigmentation, she says, you'll see eye color similarities among families and ethnicities (dark eyes are more prevalent in an African population than a Scandinavian one, for example).

What's more, whether they're brown, hazel, green, blue, gray, or somewhere in between, your eyes can tell you more about yourself than you might expect-and not just in "the eyes are the windows to the soul" kind of way. Your eye colour could dictate your risk for certain diseases or even predict how your body handles booze.

Dark-eyed people are more likely to have cataracts.
A fogginess appearing over the pupil of the eye is a common sign of cataracts, a clouding of the vision common with aging. And people with dark eyes are at greater risk: A 2000 study published in theAmerican Journal of Ophthalmology found that dark-eyed people had a 1.5 to 2.5 times greater risk of cataracts. Protecting your eyes from ultraviolet raysis one of the crucial steps of cataract prevention for anyone, but the researchers recommend dark-eyed sunbathers take particular caution. (Wearing sunnies and a hat with a brim is a good place to start!)

People with dark eyes may be more sensitive to alcohol.
If your eyes are black or brown, you may drink less than your blue- or green-eyed friends, according to a 2001 study published in Personality and Individual Differences.

Scientists validate local plants for cancer treatment.

Written by CHUKWUMA MUANYA - Nigeria

Mucuna pruriens Piper guineense
Chinese and Nigerian researchers have validated the use of bitter leaf (Vernonia amygdalina), Gongronema latifolium (utazi in Ibo, arokeke in Yoruba), West African Black Pepper or Ashanti pepper (Piper guineense, uziza in Igbo and ata iyere in Yoruba), sesame (Sesamum indicum), and Cowhage also called Velvet bean (Mucuna pruriens, agbala or agbaloko in Ibo and werepe in Yoruba) in the treatment of cancers. 

A very recent study on anti-cancer and free radical scavenging activity of some Nigerian food plants shows that regular intake of local spices and vegetables such as bitter leaf (Vernonia amygdalina), Gongronema latifolium (utazi in Ibo, arokeke in Yoruba), West African Black Pepper or Ashanti pepper (Piper guineense, uziza in Igbo and ata iyere in Yoruba), sesame (Sesamum indicum), and Cowhage also called Velvet bean (agbala or agbaloko in Ibo and werepe in Yoruba) could provide the elusive cure for cancers.

The study was published in February 25, 2015 edition of the International Journal of Cancer Research.

Good standing posture makes you feel better


Want to feel more confident and energetic? Stand up straight and strut your stuff because there's a connection between posture and mood.
Vivian Eisenstadt is an orthopaedic and sports physical therapist, postural specialist, and spiritual psychologist. She believes our physical, mental and emotional states interact and affect each other on a moment-to-moment basis.

"Poor posture carries energy with it," she said. "Depression, fatigue, and insecurity are just some of the feelings that are associated with shoulders forward and forward head posture."
Eisenstadt said expressions like "keep your chin up" and "hold your head high" exist for a reason. "Standing straight exudes a sense of pride, confidence, and promotes happiness. By standing straight, you actually feel better. Try it right now. I'll bet you feel sexier."
"Strut your stuff" carries energy with it, she said. "There is a higher self-esteem that good posture gives you."

If you want to get that job, that audition, that girl to go out with you – show good posture, advises Eisenstadt. She said it displays a sense of self-care that others subconsciously read off of you. You'll get more respect from others when you have good posture. "So, stand up straight, sit straight, and feel better in all ways possible."

Posture expert, Dr. Steve Weiniger of Body Zone, says posture breakdown spirals when people habitually move with their body folded (i.e. sitting, texting, computing) in a poor posture environment. Although there is no perfect posture position, there are easy ways to adjust your posture environment. "The key is to keep moving," said Weiniger.

Some of his quick tips for posture awareness include:
Drive taller: Adjust the rearview mirror in your car so you have to sit tall to see.
Walk taller: Imagine a string lifting your chest and the top of your head toward the sky.
Make adjustments: Change the angle of your computer monitor or try putting a book under it. For part of the day, consider sitting on a ball or a pelvic support. Move your car seat on long trips.

The 5,000-year secret history of the watermelon

By Mark StraussNational Geographic 
Folllow Mark Strauss on Twitter.

Ancient Hebrew texts and Egyptian tomb paintings reveal the origins of our favorite summertime fruit.
Picture of painting of watermelon and fruit

The watermelon has long inspired artists, such as Giuseppe Recco's Still Life With Fruit (1634-1695). The first color sketches of the red-fleshed, sweet watermelon in Europe can be found in a medieval medical manuscript, the Tacuinum Sanitatis.

To taste a watermelon is to know "what the angels eat," Mark Twain proclaimed.
The angels, however, would have gagged if they had eaten the watermelon's wild ancestor - a bitter fruit with hard, pale-green flesh. Generations of selective breeding, spanning several countries and cultures, produced the sweet red fruit that's now a common sight on picnic tables.

Much of this epic history has been lost to antiquity. But Harry Paris, a horticulturalist at the Agricultural Research Organization in Israel, has spent years assembling clues – including ancient Hebrew texts, artifacts in Egyptian tombs and medieval illustrations - that have enabled him to chronicle the watermelon's astonishing 5,000-year transformation.

Who's your Daddy?

Scientists agree that the watermelon's progenitor - the ur-watermelon, if you will - was cultivated in Africa before spreading north into Mediterranean countries and, later, to other parts of Europe.

But, that's where the consensus ends. Did the ancestral watermelon originally grow in Western Africa? Southern Africa? Northeastern Africa? The theories are, literally, all over the map.
"The history has been screwed up from the very outset," says Paris, who places the blame on generations of taxonomists, stretching back to the 18th century, who hopelessly muddled melon classification.

Even the name for the modern watermelon - Citrullus lanatus - is wrong. Lanatus means "hairy" in Latin and was originally the name applied to the fuzz-covered citron melon (Cirtrullus amarus).
The citron melon, which grows in southern Africa, is one popular candidate for the watermelon's ancient ancestor. But Paris is doubtful. He's found evidence that the Egyptians began growing watermelon crops around 4,000 years ago, which predates farming in southern Africa.

Don’t say ‘hungry and angry,’ say ‘hangry’.

~ TheGuardian, Nigeria. 

“A hungry man is an angry man,” is a popular saying. If you are truly hungry, voicing out that sentence itself may make you extra angry. Too long.

I think the editors at the Oxford Dictionary feel thepains of a lot of people, hence, they came up with the word ‘hangry’. All thanks to the English Language.

The English Language, is arguably, the most versatile language in the world. The language, through millions of people who use it daily, keeps reinventing itself to remain current.

You also need to be current. Below are the new set of words that have just been added to the Oxford Dictionary of English. You may find them useful soon.

An instance of deliberately dropping or tossing aside one's microphone at the end of a performance or speech one considers to have been particularly impressive:
he ruffled some feathers with his acceptance speech and mic drop after winning the Best British Album award
figurative the final track is the ultimate mic drop’

AWESOMESAUCE: (adjective)
Extremely good; excellent:
the ladies’ awesomesauce weekend in Vegas ended prematurely
seeing them perform live was awesomesauce!
[AS EXCLAMATION]: awesomesauce, looking forward to it!

plural noun
British informal
Playfully teasing or mocking remarks exchanged with another person or group; banter:
it's going to be a top night with plenty of bants
the bantz were better before social media and even better before text messaging.

informal, chiefly US
Short for no big deal.
he fought off a hundred vampires like it was NBD
informal, , derogatory
Short for social justice warrior.
there will be an uproar from SJWs

I rly hope everyone is OK!
that's not rly the point
[AS SUBMODIFIER]: the price is pretty reasonable and the food is rly good

[MASS NOUN] informal
The practice whereby a man, especially one travelling on public transport, adopts a sitting position with his legs wide apart, in such a way as to encroach on an adjacent seat or seats:
a campaign to discourage manspreading or using an adjacent seat as a footrest.
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