Education, Parenting, The Human Body

Managing Our Children’s Diet


With the collaboration and coordination of King’s College Hospital clinics, thehelicoptermommy invites you and your child to attend a seminar on “Managing Our Children’s Diet”
By: Dr. Rachel Leiper – Family Medicine
For: mom or dad and one child aged 9 to 13 years
When: 27/02/2016 from10:30 a.m. to 11.30 a.m
Where: King’s College Hospital Clinics Shining Towers Khalidiya
For free registration please:
1. Follow thehelicoptermommy
2. email
Include: a. Your name and number
               b. Your child’s name and age
Limited places
Valet parking service is available

About Life, The Human Body

Knowledge and Union: Our Power against Hardship


“Cancer is just a term; it doesn’t define who you are!” says Laurie Ann in her book When Gray Becomes a Primary Color. This phrase sums up the Breast Cancer Awareness Event that took place last Saturday.


The seminar started with Dr. Nahida Amin,Family Medicine Doctor, from King’s College Hospital, who explicitly explained the steps needed to be taken in order to detect breast cancer at its earlier stages. According to Dr. Amin, breast cancer is the leading type of cancer in Abu Dhabi, UAE, and accounting for 25% of all cancers. It is the second leading cause of death for women just after cardiovascular diseases. Sadly, half of the women diagnosed with breast cancer are below the age of 46 years.

julie and dr

Being physically active, maintaining a healthy weight, and limiting alcohol intake can help in lowering the risk of breast cancer. There is also the belief that breast feeding and refraining from using hormonal therapy to deal with menopause symptoms can also decrease the risk factors.

Unfortunately, there is no sure way to prevent breast cancer, but there are things all women can do which helps in reducing their risk.  Indeed, if breast cancer was detected at an early stage, the chances for getting a treatable cure and recovering from it are higher.

That is why it is important to screen for breast cancer and to contact your doctor for certain worries. The recommended screening for breast cancer is as follows;

  • Clinical breast exam and self-exam
  • Mammograms
  • Ultra sound
  • MRI

The ladies were all engaged and there was a thorough discussion about certain worries and concerns. Dr. Amin was more than pleased to satisfy all of these anxieties.

meand melanie

Then, we were honoured to have Dr. Gobert from Bosom Buddies, who persisted on the positive role support groups play with cancer patients. The ladies at Bosom Buddies meet the first Sunday of every month in Café Arabia. One good way to support a cancer patient would be to know how they feel and help them talk about it. Dr. Gobert’s wide knowledge on the subject and compassionate approach had a positive impact on all of us.

laurie pic

Last but not least, Mrs. Laurie Nelson, who is also a cancer survivor herself, briefly described how her cancer started and how it ended. She was delighted to be among us and saluted the attending ladies for being part of a good cause.

Unfortunately, cancer is still considered to be a taboo where many are afraid of even mentioning it. Knowledge is our power in defying hardship. The more we know the more awareness we spread, and the more hope we give.

Both ladies’ beautiful words and inspiration gave me a sense of strength and potency. The seminar by itself was constructively engaging and informative despite the hardship of the disease itself.

engagement colage

Finally, I would like to share with you the feedback I received from the attendees of the breast cancer awareness event. In that regard, I sent them the following question and below are their answers:

What message will you convey to fellow women after attending the breast cancer seminar?

“The seminar was as informative as the previous one…I personally learned a lot and enjoyed listening to the speakers. Thanks a lot for all your effort and wish you all the success in coming events.”

“Thank u for this exceptional seminar.
I will advise them to always do all tests that can help them diagnose anything abnormal in their body.”

“Awareness, knowledge, and simple health tips can add quality years to your life.”

“Breast cancer is very common and can happen to anyone. Heredity is responsible for only 10% of the cases. Since we cannot know what are the causing factors of breast cancer, our best defence is self-examination, followed by more precise tests if needed. If detected early, chances of survival and cure increase.”

“Don’t be afraid of knowing!”

“Thinking positively is part of the cure no matter what the case is.”

“Early detection is the key. Be proactive.”

“Although breast cancer may not be prevented, but detecting it earlier makes it somehow easier to be treated! Thank you for this informative session and for giving us the chance to meet cancer survivors who were sincere and truly inspirational!”

“Awareness provokes early detection which can save a life.”

I would like to thank each and every lady who has joined us that day and have been part of our awareness group. I highly appreciate your openness and sincerity in sharing with us your pains, doubts, and qualms. I also value your dedication and the time you have specified to join us for such a good cause, because you are now an inspiration to others.

My gratitude also goes to the staff at King’s College Hospital whose professional team and well organized manner played a major role in the event’s success. Finally, a big thank you goes to our two beautiful women who have shared their inspiring stories with us. The mere fact of having you amongst us is empowering.

Thank you Layan Emirates Gifts, Silkor Medical Laser Center, Ella Spa, and King’s College Hospital for showering us with all those special gifts and prizes.

Without you all this would not have come true, so thank you!!

group picture breast cancer

The Human Body

Silkor Facial Solution Review

Despite my duties and despite the fact that I am always on the run, I do make it a point to have some “me time”. As dedicated moms, we should make sure that we cannot but take care of ourselves. Once a mom feels content and energetic, she will provide her family with better care.

Silkor Laser  Medical Institute has offered me a dazzling facial experience. This Facial Solution includes:

  • A session of peeling (15 minutes)
  • A session of Mesotherapy (1 hour)
  • A session of Diamond Micro Dermabrasion (1 hour)

The result was amazing as the package given has revived my skin and gave me the needed glow.

As usual, at Silkor you are always welcomed with a warm smile. The minute your enter its meticulously furnished seating area you feel you have entered into a calm and cool haven, away from the boiling heat and boisterous noise outside. A few minutes later, you will be asked with a sincere and hospitable smile about your drink preference.

First of all, I was given a detailed consultation session where Mrs. Chehade thoroughly explained the procedure to me in detail. We set the appointment and I was looking forward to being pampered.

It is crucial to start with the chemical peel, since it is the abrasive element that will trigger the results. As the technician gently cleansed my face and put on the creams, she explicitly told me what she was doing, the type of products used, and what I expect to happen during the coming days.

first peel

The minute she used the acidic substance, I felt I could peel my skin off my face, but the burning sensation diminished as quickly as it started. Soon enough all was back to normal.

I was also offered an anti-agent night cream, which I had to use for three consecutive nights.

The next day, I received a follow up phone call from Silkor making sure I was satisfied with the treatment. This routine, yet significant, call is something I highly appreciate because it makes me feel valued as a costumer.

Two main things you need to keep in mind once you finish with the peeling session:

  • Avoid direct skin contact with children for six hours.
  • Use sun screen on a daily basis

As predicted, I did not really peel a lot. I had a few dead skin falling off from the sides of my mouth and the tip of my nose as shown below.


Around day three the peeling increased, but it was not that annoying as it mainly happened at night. After two weeks, I was ready for my second session.

After the peeling stage is over and done with, Mesotherapy comes next which was an ironic combination of pain and pleasure. The minute I entered the spotless room, there was a red rose on the stretcher. The technician cleansed my face, and then massaged it for a few minutes. It was incredibly relaxing. Apparently, having a routine facial massage helps in dismounting the presence of fine lines and wrinkles.

Then, came the difficult part where the technician used a hygienic roller made of micro needles, which is given to the client, and rolled it all over my face and neck.

micro needle

Though painful with a burning sensation, this treatment provides the face with the following advantages:

  • Essential vitamins for the face
  • Gives a plumbing feeling as it tightens the skin
  • Removes scars
  • Reduces fine lines and wrinkles

After all, the saying goes “No pain, no gain!”

Once the technician finished with the roller, she covered my face with a special nourishing mask, and gave me an exuberant massage for my hands, arms, shoulders, and head. The burning sensation on my face decreased, and I left home with a natural pink glow.

pink glow

Finally, the last step of this facial was the Diamond Micro Dermabrasion with Shock facial treatment, which was heavenly.

applying cream

Again, I was welcomed with a red rose on the stretcher. After cleansing my face, the technician started with the Diamond Micro Machine, which basically sucks in the dead skin. It is not painful, and helps the pores of your skin open up and get rid of all its toxics.

I was surprised by the amount of dead skin that came out of my face.

diamond machine

Then, with my eyes covered and my face concealed with special moisturizing creams, I was spoiled with a full hands, shoulders, and neck massage. All along there was a relaxing music in the background. All the tension, the stress and pressures dissolved, and I did not want the session to end.

cream face

The beauty of all of this is getting up and seeing your face gleaming with radiance.

 Thank you Silkor  for providing me with such a unique experience. I have received many compliments about the glow you have bestowed me.

I am so glad to have had the chance of undergoing such an extraordinary Facial Solution. What about you, my dear reader, how do you usually spoil yourself and take care of your beauty?

final glow

For further information about the Diamond Micro Dermabrasion and the Mesotherapy, and Silkor’s services please check the links below:

The Human Body

Who Is In Control?

Our brain is such a complex and mysterious organ that might seem to be unreachable and ambiguous. We think that it is the one that controls us, but the surprising news is that we do.

I did not know that directing the brain is attainable until I experienced it myself during labour with the twins. My water broke at 33 weeks, and I had to go through the delivery on my own. The contractions suddenly became intense and immediate.  The doctors panicked and I could see them running and shouting orders for me to be directly transferred to the OR for a C-section. To make things worse, it was my first experience with a C-section, in a hospital that I have never been to before. The anaesthetist told me that if I wanted to have a local aesthesia, I had to stop myself from shaking. I was not aware that every muscle in my body was quivering. I knew that if I do not stop these trembling movements, he will put me to sleep. And that was my main fear.

I did not want to drift away into a dark world I did not know, and I wanted to be with my twins the minute they were born, and I could not help it.  At that instant I knew that it is all in my head, and I was surprised by my own voice that suddenly became clear and calm when I told the doctor, “I can do it. Just do whatever you need to do and have my babies arrive safely.”

In fact, I have decided not to panic. I set my goal that I need to control my emotions and be strong for my twins and for myself. Within few minutes, the doctor was able to insert the needle in my spine, and a couple of seconds later I heard the first cry of my first twin…

But how can this be true scientifically? What has happened to my brain when I took the decision not to panic?

decidng brain

In the brain there are multiple structures where each has its own function. Two of those are the Limbic System and the Prefrontal Cortex.

The Limbic System, also known as The Animal Brain, supports a variety of functions including adrenaline flowemotion, and behaviour. For example, when a person has a panic attack, it is this part of the brain that is working on full speed.

lymbic system

In fact, it will be the one sending signals to have the person react to the panic experienced. Many people think that it is a positive thing to have such reactions. Others wonder how we can control our fears and if it is possible to work on our brains and have these calm and controlled attitudes become our nature. As moms, having this option would be great, especially when we want our children not to panic, or to be frustrated, or even to feel helpess.

Could we actually change our brain to function in a free style controlled manner? Can we really manage our Limbic system and eventually our fears?

Indeed we can, and here comes the other brain structure, the Prefrontal cortex, into play…

The outer frontal part of the brain is the Prefrontal cortex that helps us guide our thoughts and fears. In fact, as Goldman Rakic put it back in October 1996:

“The prefrontal cortex is responsible for planning, action, thoughts and also for the inhibition of inappropriate thoughts, emotions, actions and feelings.“

In other words, the Prefrontal cortex controls our “animal brain”.


                                The Prefrontal Cortex: 

deciding brain 4     deciding brain 2  deciding brain 3


This means that once you take the decision of not wanting to panic, or to holler, or when you even want to overcome any other weakness that you have, this part of the brain, the Prefrontal cortex, starts to send messages to the Limbic System to have it under control.  Once you set your mind on a goal, the brain accelerates this process to accomplish a meticulous mental state.

Scientists believe that goal-setting works by assisting the Frontal Lobes. As the brain’s supervisor, the Frontal Lobes are responsible for reasoning and planning. The minute you concentrate on a specific goal, the Prefrontal cortex keeps the Limbic System in check.

Last but not least, the brain is also characterized by Neuroplasticity or Brain Plasticity, which states that the brain is in continuous change. Unlike the old belief that it is a physiologically static organ, it is always ready to form new connections. In other words, our brain can change to form better connections between the Prefrontal cortex and the Limbic system and eventually enhances our self-control.

And guess how you can from such connections?

By simply “deciding to” control the BRAIN!!

The point is that we are blessed with a miraculous organ which is the brain. In it we can decide whether we want to be weak, helpless, feeble, or vulnerable. On the other hand, we can train it to help us in being resilient, powerful, and effective decision makers.

Luckily, science is there to aid us in comprehending and realizing the secrets that lie within each human. After many trials, these self-control issues help us in dealing with our weaknesses and faults.  Once we understand them and overcome them, we can easily transmit these methods to our children who will be able to soar up freely in the future.

‘…I am the master of my fate

I am the captain of my soul’

“Invictus” written by the English poet William Ernest Henley

N.B.: The medical information was provided by Dr. W. Radwan – Neurologist at AUB-MC