Research

 

Researchers have established a powerful link between diet and dementia. Although no special nutritional combination has been formulated to curb Alzheimer disease, some nutrients have been identified to slow down this mental degeneration. Research recommends a healthful, balanced diet loaded with an antioxidant: molecules that inhibits oxidation of other moleculescarotenoids like lutein, folate, omega-3 fatty acids, and some vitamins B6C, and E; to be taken regularly for a long period of time.

There is increasing proof that certain foods may be linked with brain longevity and reduce the threat of Alzheimer’s disease. For example, curry spice turmeric has both antioxidant as well as anti-inflammatory properties that are believed to guard against the disorder. Studies carried out on animals indicate that turmeric has been proven to slow the accumulation of harmful brain plaques.

Recent population studies indicate that the elderly in India, who feed on diets rich in curry, have considerably lower rates of the disease in comparison with their Western counterparts.

Like turmeric, blueberries may also fight age-related mental impairment, with Alzheimer’s disease inclusive. Blueberries a typical violet colour fruit appear to have powerful antioxidant, anti-inflammatory properties. One of the studies has revealed that; a daily cup of blueberries prevented mental deterioration in mice genetically engineered to have Alzheimer’s disease.

The consumption of healthful fats which are not only unhydrogentated but also unsaturated fats—from such foods as avocados, fish, nuts, olives, olive oil, and seeds appears to be useful as well. The population studies show that consumption of large quantities of butter, meat and whole milk doubles the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Tropical oils and many animal-based foods, such as butter, meat or whole milk which generally comprise of saturated fats. Trans fats are commonly derived from baked goods, margarine, and other processed foods.

Studies are being carried out to determine whether food nutrients can reverse the Alzheimer disorder and the advanced severe symptoms. When symptoms and complications like weight loss and swallowing difficulties associated with Alzheimer disorders arise, visit a physician.

What You Should Eat & Why neutralize generated Antioxidants

Antioxidants may guard against Alzheimer’s disease by counteracting the Free radicals—harmful substances produced during normal metabolism. Free radicals are considered to contribute to not only plaques but also tangles found in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients.
The most important Food Sources of antioxidants: Grapes, Tomatoes, BlueberriesSpinachOranges, Kale.

Carotenoids
Antioxidant characteristics found in carotenoids when combined with vitamins C and E, may be useful to protect the nerve cells in the brain from decline.
The most important Food Sources of carotenoids: CarrotsCollard greens, Sweet potatoesSpinachPeppers.

Folic acid
Commonly known as folate, this essential B Vitamin has been confirmed to lower blood levels of 
Homocysteine. Even moderate increments in the level of homocysteine double or triple the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
The most important Food Sources of this acid: Asparagus, Brussels sprouts, Beans-Soya, LentilsOrangesCabbage, SavoyBeans, driedSpinach and Avocados.

 

vitamin B6
Diminished blood levels of homocysteine, vitamin B6 may be useful to curbs the advance of Alzheimer’s disease
.
The most important Food Sources of vitamin B6:  Potatoes, Bok choy BarleyMangoesBananasSunflower seeds and Tuna.

Reuters: Loophole Allows Uber To Avoid UK Tax, Undercut Rivals

By Tom Bergin

LONDON (Reuters) – Car service Uber is using a gap in EU and UK tax rules to avoid incurring sales tax on the booking fees it charges drivers in Britain, a practice a senior politician said was unfair to competitors and defied the intent of the law.

San Francisco-based Uber charges lower fares than rival ride hailing apps. In Britain, its competitors? fares include 20 percent value added tax (VAT) on booking fees, but Uber?s fares do not.

Uber is able to avoid VAT by exploiting a loophole in how the tax is collected for business-to-business sales across EU borders, which arises because it treats its 40,000 UK drivers as separate businesses, each too small to register for VAT.

It confirmed to Reuters that it does not pay value added tax on the fees it charges British drivers. By contrast, two of its main UK rivals, Gett and mytaxi, both said they do pay VAT on their fees. They declined to comment on Uber?s practice.

The loophole applies in other European countries too, but is particularly important for Uber in Britain which accounts for a third of its European business. Other EU countries have put tighter rules in place to close or narrow the loophole.

Paying VAT on Uber?s fees would cost the company about 1,000 pounds a year on average for each of its UK drivers, based on information Uber has given about the size of its British business, which is growing rapidly under its expansion plans.

Uber told Reuters it respected the tax rules in all the countries where it operated. Asked whether avoiding paying value added tax gave the company an unfair advantage over its rivals, a spokesman said: ?The same rules apply to any international service provider with customers in the UK.?

Her Majesty?s Revenue and Customs (HMRC), the UK tax authority, declined to comment onUber, citing confidentiality rules. A spokesman said: ?Everyone has to pay the tax due under the law and we make sure they do.?

Three European tax experts consulted by Reuters said Uber?s practice probably complies with the way Britain has decided to implement EU rules.

But Margaret Hodge, a member of Britain?s Labour Party who has long led parliamentary investigations into corporate tax avoidance, criticized Uber?s practice of not paying VAT on its fees, when told of it by Reuters.

?It is yet another example of how large companies find loopholes and use the law for a purpose for which it was never intended,? she said. ?There is a failure to pay tax that should be due. That reduces the money available for public services and is unfair on Uber?s competitors.?

The same loophole is used by other companies such as Google and Facebook to avoid VAT on certain transactions involving small businesses, but the benefit is more important for Uber, since the fees it charges drivers are its main source of income.

Even as Uber has become a transportation powerhouse around the world, opponents, including established taxi operators, have mounted legal and public relations attacks on the Silicon Valley company, saying it owes its success to bending the rules.

Several high level executives have left Uber in recent months, and its CEO was forced to apologize after being filmed haranguing one of its drivers. It has hired former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to investigate its corporate culture, including accusations of sexual harassment.

In Europe, the lead advocate to the European Court of Justice concluded in May that Uber is a transportation service, not an information platform, and therefore open to far greater regulation.

In the United States it also faces a Justice Department criminal investigation into software used to prevent law enforcement officials from hailing Uber cars, to shield the company from regulators.

Despite those troubles, Uber has been growing rapidly, rolling out its service in new cities month by month.

 

REVERSE CHARGE

Uber avoids having to charge British value added tax on its booking fees by treating each driver as an individual business and then billing drivers across EU borders from its Dutch subsidiary, using an EU VAT provision called the ?reverse charge?.

The rule lets businesses sell goods or services to other businesses across EU borders without paying VAT. There is usually no loss of tax revenue, because the importing business collects VAT from its own customers.

But since Uber drivers mostly generate less than the 85,000 pounds a year sales threshold to register for VAT in Britain, they don?t have to collect it.

Gett and mytaxi both bill their drivers from companies within Britain. As the reverse charge does not apply to domestic sales, that means that unlike Uber they must charge drivers VAT.

Uber is not the only big American firm to use EU reverse charge rules to reduce the VAT tab when billing small business clients across EU borders. Google and Facebook use the same approach when selling from their Irish regional headquarters.

That means British plumbers or guesthouse owners who are not registered for VAT can buy advertisements from Google or Facebook without being charged the tax, even though they would pay it when placing an advertisement in a local newspaper.

?It is a system failure because the rules are not harmonized in respect of dealing with small businesses,? said Pascal Schrijver, a partner with Deloitte in Amsterdam. Google said it followed all tax rules. Facebook declined comment.

The EU?s reverse charge regime was intended to cut paperwork required to distribute VAT revenue among EU countries by placing the responsibility for collecting it on the importing country. It was not intended to allow companies to escape VAT altogether, said Laurent Lattmann, a VAT partner with advisory Taxand in Zurich.

?A supplier should not use the reverse charge if they are selling to a customer without a VAT registration,? Lattmann said.

Other EU countries often have lower sales thresholds to register for VAT, and several have systems in place to ensure that buyers that are not VAT-registered pay the missing tax when they import goods or services VAT-free across EU borders.

Germany has imposed a requirement on non-VAT registered businesses to complete a special form and pay the tax when they import reverse-charged goods or services, said Barbara Fleckenstein-Weiland, tax lawyer with Flick Gocke Schaumburg in Frankfurt. Erwin Boumans, Brussels-based tax partner at accountants BDO said Belgium had a similar system.

?The cultural attitude of tax authorities is very different from country to country. The UK has historically taken a light touch approach,? said Nicholas Hallam, Chief Executive of UK VAT advisory Accordance.

 

?TREADING WATER?

Uber is privately-held and does not publish accounts, but says it has more than 40,000 drivers in Britain who each bring in an average of around 560 pounds a week in gross fares. It normally charges fees of 20-25 percent of the fare.

That suggests the company is collecting more than 200 million pounds a year in fees on more than 1 billion in UK fares, and saving at least 40 million by not paying VAT. Uber declined to comment when presented with those calculations.

If Uber were forced to pay VAT on its fees and tried to pass the extra cost on to drivers, many would quit, said Jason Shepherd, a London Uber driver who moved with his wife and kids into his in-laws? house to make ends meet.

?Most Uber drivers are just treading water,? he said. ?If Uber put up its fees I would immediately consider other options and I?m sure most other drivers would too.?

James Farrar, an Uber driver trying to organize fellow drivers into a union, said typical drivers earn only around 6 pounds an hour after car rental, insurance and other costs.

?Even with surge fares, it?s less than the minimum wage? of 7.50 an hour, he said. Uber says drivers who rent their cars earn more than 8 pounds an hour on average.

 

(Reporting by Tom Bergin; editing by Peter Graff)

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This Is The Scientific Reason Why Today’s Opioid Crisis Is So Complicated

The New York Times calls it ?America?s 50-state epidemic? because of its ruthless ability to transcend social and economic classes, city and state boundaries, friendships and even family bonds. The CDC matter-of-factly says that the U.S. ?is in the midst of an opioid overdose epidemic.?

The facts paint a picture: Opioid overdoses are at an all-time high in the U.S., with more than 33,000 overdose cases in 2015 alone, a record. Nearly half of those involved a prescription opioid. And while genetic predisposition accounts for about 50 percent of the likelihood that a person will develop an addiction, studies still show that one in seven Americans is expected to develop some kind of substance use disorder at some point during his or her life.

But while the facts are clear cut, the reason why addition can?t be shaken isn?t quite so black and white. Addiction is a progressive, chronic disease that literally changes the brain?s reward, memory and motivation circuits, altering how it receives and processes information. That?s why we?ve partnered with Caron Treatment Centers to understand what?s going on inside an addicted brain. Check out the four stages of addiction below. (Click on the names of each stage to learn more.)

Because the path to addiction recovery is a lifelong process, Caron Treatment Centers understands the nuances of recovery. Caron specializes in treating addiction through a holistic, wellness-first lens. Learn more.

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Pentagon Distancing Itself From Donald Trump On Qatar

The Pentagon is distancing itself from President Donald Trump over remarks he made on the United States? relationship with Qatar.

Trump this week took credit for a recent diplomat shakeup in the Middle East. Several Arab countries, including key U.S. allies Saudi Arabia and the UAE, cut ties with Qatar over its support of the Muslim Brotherhood. Those countries consider the largely nonviolent group to be a terrorist organization, but the official U.S. policy is that it?s not. Trump?s recent tweets seemed contradict that stance, however.

Asked about the commander in chief?s comments, Department of Defense spokesman Capt. Jeff Davis told reporters that, ?I can?t help you with that… I will only tell you that we have, with regard to our bases there, continued presence in our operations.?

Davis also praised Qatar for what he called an ?enduring commitment to regional security.? State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert echoed those remarks, telling reporters on Tuesday that, ?our relationship with Qatar is one that?s strong? and U.S. Ambassador to Qatar Dana Shell Smith retweeted an earlier statement she?d made about the ?great partnership? between the two countries.

Trump?s comments came as a shock to officials in Qatar, which Trump had only weeks ago called a friend.

?We were surprised? by Trump?s comments, Qatar?s Ambassador to the U.S., Meshal bin Hamad Al Thani, told the Daily Beast. ?It?s unfortunate to see these tweets. We have close coordination with the United States. They know our efforts to combat financial terrorism and terrorism.?

It?s only the latest example of Trump?s Twitter rants creating friction with a key U.S. partner. Earlier this week, he lashed out at London Mayor Sadiq Khan, calling his reaction to the city?s recent terror attack ?pathetic.? Both British Prime Minister Theresa May and the acting U.S. ambassador to the U.K. Lewis Lukens praised the mayor in response. Khan then suggested the U.K., widely considered the United States? closest ally, cancel Trump?s upcoming visit.

Trump has also publicly squared off with German Chancellor Angela Merkel over refugees and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto over a proposed border wall. He also irritated basically the entire world by pulling out of the Paris climate agreement.

?Fundamentally, Trump in the last 4½ months has demonstrated that he doesn?t understand or doesn?t care how America has engaged the world for the last 70 years,? former U.S. Ambassador to NATO Ivo Daalder told HuffPost.

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Video Shows Donkey Being Shoved Into Tiger Exhibit At China Zoo

A donkey reportedly became collateral damage over a dispute between an investor and managers of a zoo in China.

Shocking video uploaded to LiveLeak on Monday shows a group of men shoving a donkey off the back of a truck and into a tiger exhibit. The donkey lands with a splash into a moat that surrounds the enclosure. 

The donkey struggled for 30 minutes in the water as several tigers pounced on it, according to China?s English language news site the South China Morning Post.

The below video was reportedly filmed on Monday at the Yancheng Wild Animal World in the Jiangsu province of eastern China.

Warning: The below footage is graphic:

Zoo officials said in a statement released on the Chinese microblogging site Sina Weibo that investors in the zoo threw the donkey into the tigers? enclosure after becoming frustrated over a dispute between the zoo and another company that led to the freezing of the zoo?s assets, the BBC reported.

The investors responsible for the feeding frenzy reportedly attempted to take the donkey and other zoo animals out of the zoo in order to sell them, but security stopped them, according to the South China Morning Post. So the investors shoved the donkey into the tigers? moat instead, the news outlet reports.

In the video, zoo visitors can be heard reacting with horror and surprise as the donkey lands in the predators? exhibit. 

In the official statement, zoo officials apologized for the incident and said that they would ensure that ?a similar incident would never happen again,? according to a translation by the BBC. 

As the Telegraph?s China correspondent Neil Connor pointed out, violent scenes are a common attraction in the country?s zoos and animal safaris. 

Big Cat Rescue, a Florida-based animal rescue sanctuary, has accused China?s Harbin Siberian Tiger Park for selling tourist packages that allow visitors to feed live chickens and cows to their tigers.

Video of the incident went viral on Chinese social media and many commenters responded with disgust over the investors? actions.

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