Dhanushkodi – The Ghost Town

“For those fortunate souls who constantly and directly see the beautiful form of Rama , crores of holy rivers are present at Dhanushkoti (the tip of Rama’s bow) itself, rivers like Ganga with its sources at the Lord’s feet and the Kaveri deriving its glory from shri Ranganatha; why should one wander from place to place (on tirtha yatra)?”

Dhanushkodi, a place 20 km away from the main town of Rameshwaram, is the place where you can see the Ram Setu. Dhanushkodi is the place where the wonders of nature and man become one. A place surrounded with mystery, ghost stories and myths.

Way to Dhanuskodi from Rameshwaram
Meeting point of Bay Of Bengal & Indian Ocean

The town is stark and empty – stripped of life and the barrenness. It was the 21st of December, 1964. 55 years ago, a disaster hit the little port town of Dhanushkodi swallowing the town and taking many lives. The Pamban Dhanushkodi Passenger train which left Pamban with 110 passengers and 5 members of the railway staff was hit by the high tidal waves and the whole train got submerged under water killing all 115 passengers. As a result, the little town which was once a tourist spot with several pilgrims and fishermen, was reduced to ruins. Skeletal remains of a church and a temple along with some crumbled  walls of homes lie scattered on the sands. There is hardly any ruin in the town – just some broken and fragmented bricks.

2018 Man Booker Prize winner announced

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Milkman by Anna Burns (Faber & Faber) has been announced as the winner of the 50th Man Booker Prize.

Burns, 56, who was born in Belfast and lives in East Sussex, drew on the experience of Northern Ireland during the Troubles to write Milkman. Her first acclaimed novel, No Bones, was also set in this period. She saw off competition from two British writers, two American writers and one Canadian writer.

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‘None of us has ever read anything like this before. Anna Burns’ utterly distinctive voice challenges conventional thinking and form in surprising and immersive prose. It is a story of brutality, sexual encroachment and resistance threaded with mordant humour. Set in a society divided against itself, Milkmanexplores the insidious forms oppression can take in everyday life.’

– Kwame Anthony Appiah, 2018 Chair of judges

Set in an unnamed city, Milkman focuses on middle sister as she navigates her way through rumour, social pressures and politics in a tight-knit community. Burns shows the dangerous and complex outcome that can happen to a woman coming of age in a city at war.

Juicing : Health Risks & Benefits

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Juicing seems to be the latest health craze. Juicing is an easy way to get more fruits and veggies into your diet as they are full of a myriad of important vitamins and minerals. Some of the benefits of juicing are :

Some vitamins are damaged by cooking, so the best way to get these nutrients is to eat them raw.

High water content in fruits helps body to eliminate water more efficiently.

Juices contain some amount of fiber, depending on how it is made. Like soft fruit and vegetable mode in blender will contain more fiber.

Our body absorbs nutrients faster in the juice form.

Juicing also carries potential dangers that could cause unwanted side effects and threaten your health.

Raw contaminated food can cause food borne disease like diarrhea and hepatitis.

Drinking juice can lead to increase in the blood sugar level suddenly as it gets absorbed quickly.

Can lead to weight gain, as juices are high in calorie and provide energy without relieving hunger.

Juicing for weight loss or cleansing purpose :

Going on a full juice diet can be unhealthy and dangerous, as juices do not provide the necessary nutrients for our body entirely. Fiber and proteins are definitely not the substitute of a whole diet.

If you are on medication, please consult your doctor before starting ‘juicing’, as some of the nutrients might react differently with your medication.

Green Tea

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Tea is considered the most consumed beverage in the world after water. However 78% of the tea consumed worldwide is black and only about 20% is green. Green tea is considered one of the world’s healthiest drinks and contains one of the highest amounts of antioxidants of any tea. Some of the benefits associated with green tea are:

Lowers cholesterol

Helps in maintaining mental alertness

Drinking green tea is linked to a reduced risk of clogged arteries

Drinking green tea might help increase blood pressure in elderly people,who have low blood pressure after eating

Sipping tea helps you slow down and relax and has a calming effect. Here’s how to make your next cup:

1. Don’t add green tea to boiling water. It’s bad for catechins, the healthy chemicals, in the tea.

2. Add lemon. Vitamin C makes the catechins easier to absorb. Dairy, on the other hand, makes it harder to absorb them.

3. Nutrient levels in green tea can vary. Pricier teas are usually richer in nutritional value as opposed to canned green-tea drinks.

The benefits of green tea are tangible and impressive indeed. However, green tea has been associated with a few side effects too. Some of which are listed:

1. Green tea is high in caffeine. If consumed too much, it can affect the mental health as well and cause problems like anxiety, mood swings or insomnia.

2. Tannins present in green tea affect the blood’s ability to absorb essential nutrients especially iron and this can lead to anemia. It can also cause digestive problems.

3. Mothers to be and new mothers should avoid drinking green tea as the caffeine present in it can have detrimental effect on child’s growing brain.

4. Drinking green tea in excess causes flushing out of calcium in the urine, which can lead to osteoporosis.

5. Consult your doctor before switching over to green tea if you are on medication or any kind of hormone stimulant.