Where We Are Going Today: GoodHood

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Updated 06 December 2021

Where We Are Going Today: GoodHood

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  • GoodHood is the go-to spot for getting your creativity flowing, but is also a cozy social gathering place for friends and family to enjoy board games such as chess while sipping on their favorite cup of joe

JEDDAH: GoodHood, which opened in October, welcomes visitors with the fresh aroma of coffee and subtle background music.
What makes it stand out in the growing cafe scene in Jeddah, in my opinion, is not merely the quality and selection of its coffee, but the experience of a comfortable and eccentric neighborhood cafe in a Saudi context.
It has a retro outdoor feel, with its brick walls, bonsai trees and quarry tiles.
From the banana pudding to the iced tea, the menu extends far beyond the specialty coffee. The cafe also caters to various needs, offering decaffeinated and alternative milk options such as lactose-free milk for a more inclusive experience for customers.
GoodHood is the go-to spot for getting your creativity flowing, but is also a cozy social gathering place for friends and family to enjoy board games such as chess while sipping on their favorite cup of joe.

 


Where We Are Going Today: Flour & Firewood

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Updated 10 January 2022

Where We Are Going Today: Flour & Firewood

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  • For salad lovers, the salmon salad and the house salad are top-rated dishes

Flour & Firewood is a staple for freshly baked bread and gourmet pizza in Riyadh.
Located on Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz Road in the Sulaymaniyah district, the restaurant is the perfect location for a cozy and casual family brunch.
Here, most of the dishes on the menu are served with excellent bread, but you can also order a slice of sourdough served with butter and oil.
Brunch lovers who prefer a lighter breakfast selection over pizza and pasta should try the sunny eggs platter served with grilled halloumi and bacon, or the sweet and fluffy French toast.
For starters, we recommend trying the shrimp pil-pil, which pairs surprisingly well with the shiitake mushroom pasta. The creamy and decadent pasta wraps around freshly sliced shiitake mushrooms to create the perfect blend of flavors.
For salad lovers, the salmon salad and the house salad are top-rated dishes. The portions are generous and each dish in the restaurant is served for sharing.


Hitting the gym in 2022? Try these expert tips to reduce muscle soreness

Hitting the gym in 2022? Try these expert tips to reduce muscle soreness
Updated 08 January 2022

Hitting the gym in 2022? Try these expert tips to reduce muscle soreness

Hitting the gym in 2022? Try these expert tips to reduce muscle soreness

DUBAI: Dubai-based former professional rugby player and current fitness coach Nino Barbu, who comes armed with a master’s degree in sports performance, walks us through the process of easing muscle stiffness that comes after an intense workout. If you plan to hit the gym to kick of 2022, make sure to follow these expert tips. 

For the past few decades fitness and health experts have been trying to find a way to explain or cure muscle soreness usually felt after an intense workout.

The bad news is that a complete cure has not been found, but the good news is exercise physiologists discovered some methods that can ease the symptoms of muscle soreness.

Researchers found that when muscle temperature is increased, blood flow increases, bringing fresh oxygen and healing nutrients to the sore area. (Shutterstock)

What is muscle soreness or delayed onset muscle soreness, also knowns as DOMS?

Specialists describe it as the gradually increasing discomfort that occurs between 24 and 48 hours after activity, and it is perfectly normal and is simply an indication that muscles are adapting to your fitness regimen. The mild muscle strain during the effort creates microscopic damage to the muscle fibers. Scientists believe this damage, coupled with the inflammation that accompanies these tears, is the cause of the symptoms.

Here are some tips to reduce these symptoms…

Stretching

Stretching is one of the most underrated remedies and best performed straight after a workout during the cool down period. If you are not sure how to stretch the muscles you worked out, find some inspiration on the internet where there are a multitude of resources to guide you.

Apply heat 

Brigham Young University in Utah has researched the use of heat remedies to treat muscle soreness. Researchers found that when muscle temperature is increased, blood flow increases, bringing fresh oxygen and healing nutrients to the sore area. 

Ice baths

Ice baths or cold showers can also ease symptoms due to the fact that they lower the damaged tissue’s temperature and constrict the blood vessels. This helps reduce swelling and inflammation, and even numbs the nerve endings, usually bringing immediate relief. Ice baths can also help your central nervous system by aiding in sleep, and consequently, making you feel better by reducing fatigue. They can be performed after each workout for intervals of 3-6 minutes. In order to maximize the benefits of cold therapy combine it with hot therapy (a hot shower or sauna). The recommended routine for an athlete would be three rounds alternating three minutes of a hot shower or sauna with three minutes of a cold shower or ice bath.

Anti-inflammatory treatment

A naturally occurring anti-inflammatory compound is curcumin. Research suggests that curcumin can help in the management of oxidative and inflammatory conditions, metabolic syndrome, arthritis, anxiety and hyperlipidemia. It may also help in the management of exercise-induced inflammation and muscle soreness, thus enhancing recovery and subsequent performance in active people. Speak to your doctor about other anti-inflammatory treatments if you wish to take the allopathic route. 

Rest

In more severe DOMS cases, the best solution might be to give your muscles a chance to heal by themselves and repair. Ideally, it is recommended to skip any kind of high-intensity cardio or power lifting sessions when sore which may only worsen and delay recovery.


Women’s periods may be slightly late after Covid vaccine: study

Women’s periods may be slightly late after Covid vaccine: study
Updated 07 January 2022

Women’s periods may be slightly late after Covid vaccine: study

Women’s periods may be slightly late after Covid vaccine: study
  • The slight increase in menstrual cycle length is not clinically significant

WASHINGTON: Women vaccinated against Covid-19 saw a slight delay in their period of almost a day compared to those who were unvaccinated, a US government-funded study said Thursday.
But the number of days of bleeding was not affected, according to the research carried out on nearly 4,000 individuals and published in “Obstetrics & Gynecology.”
Lead author Alison Edelman of the Oregon Health & Science University told AFP the effects are small and expected to be temporary, a finding that is “very reassuring” as well as validating for those who experienced changes.
The study can also help counter anti-vaccine misinformation on the topic, which is rampant on social media.
The slight increase in menstrual cycle length is not clinically significant. Any change of fewer than eight days is classified as normal by the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics.
Period cycles generally last about 28 days, but the precise amount varies from one woman to another, as well as within an individual’s lifetime. It can also change during times of stress.
For their study, the scientists analyzed anonymized data from a fertility tracking app, among women aged 18 to 45 who were not using hormonal contraception.
Some 2,400 participants were vaccinated — the majority with Pfizer (55 percent), followed by Moderna (35 percent) and Johnson & Johnson (seven percent).
About 1,500 unvaccinated women were also included as a comparison.
Among the vaccinated group, data was collected from three consecutive cycles before vaccination and from three more consecutive cycles, including the cycle or cycles in which vaccination took place.
For unvaccinated individuals, data was collected for six consecutive cycles.
On average, the first vaccine dose was associated with a 0.64-day increase in cycle length and the second dose with a 0.79-day increase, when comparing the vaccinated to unvaccinated group.
The immune system’s response to the vaccine could be behind the change.
“We know that the immune system and the reproductive system are interlinked,” said Edelman.
A revved-up immune system might have an impact on the hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian axis — what Edelman calls the “highway of how your brain talks to your ovaries, talks to your uterus,” or simply the “body clock.”
Specifically, the production of inflammatory proteins called cytokines appears to disrupt the way this axis regulates the timing of menstrual cycles.
The changes seem most pronounced when vaccination takes place early in the follicular phase, which starts on the first day of the menstrual period (bleeding) and ends when ovulation begins.
In fact, a subgroup of people who received two injections of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines during the same cycle, as opposed to two different cycles, saw an average increase in cycle length of two days — but the effect again appears temporary.
The team now hopes to gather more data on subsequent cycles among vaccinated women to confirm a long-term return to baseline, and expand the study globally so they can differentiate the effects between vaccine brands.


How East London’s oldest halal eatery survived the pandemic

How East London’s oldest halal eatery survived the pandemic
Updated 04 January 2022

How East London’s oldest halal eatery survived the pandemic

How East London’s oldest halal eatery survived the pandemic
  • Halal Restaurant first opened in 1939 to serve the needs of Muslims in the maritime industry
  • The pandemic cut much of its office worker traffic, forcing the restaurant to rely on delivery and takeaway orders

LONDON: With the fate of East London’s oldest halal restaurant on the line, a desperate call went out on Twitter.
“Not one to do this,” wrote @mehnazmeh, “but my dad owns the oldest Indian restaurant in east London and has been struggling with customers, so please show some love! If you’re in Aldgate, come and have a curry, I’m biased, but it’s the best!”
Mehnaz Mahaboob included parallel images of both her father and grandfather seated in the restaurant over the decades. The tweet went viral, earning more than 40,000 interactions on Twitter, and for a few glorious weeks Halal Restaurant was packed.
“It really worked. There were people waiting outside the door because of the tweet. We had to turn people away for dinner, which is something we never had before,” said Mahaboob Narangoli, Mehnaz’s father and the current owner of Halal Restaurant, which serves a wide variety of South Asian food.
The brief boom brought in enough to keep the business afloat through a second pandemic lockdown in the UK, when the restaurant had to again close its doors for seven months, according to Narangoli.
Halal Restaurant first opened in 1939 to serve the needs of Muslims in the maritime industry. Over the ensuing decades the restaurant has changed with East London and now relies on the lunchtime crowds of bankers, shipping agents and insurance industry employees who work in the city of London. But the pandemic cut much of that traffic, forcing the restaurant to rely on delivery and takeaway orders as the normally packed streets of London went quiet.
“We have many customers who have been coming here even before my father took over. We just had someone in today who has been eating here since the 1960s,” said Narangoli.
The restaurant was originally part of London’s Hostel for Indian Seamen. In those days, the nearby Saint Katherine’s Docks, named for the church demolished in 1825 that once stood on the site, was a working part of London’s docklands. The area attracted many South Asians who worked as lascars aboard various ships.
In 1932, the Indian National Congress had estimated there were just over 7,000 South Asians living in the United Kingdom — many tied to the maritime industry.
The docks and the Tower of London, which is a five-minute walk away, were both heavily damaged during World War II. Even today, Halal Restaurant’s sparse tables seem to recall the establishment’s maritime heritage. A photo of the restaurant’s all-wooden interior in the 1970s could easily be mistaken for a mess hall on a ship.
Narangoli’s father, Usman Abubakar, was no stranger to the sea. Abubakar first came to London as a member of the Merchant Navy. In 1970, he started working as a waiter in The Halal Restaurant. By 1978, Abubakar was the proprietor, after purchasing the restaurant from its second owner.
The 1970s may have been a turbulent time in Britain with labor struggles and the 1976 currency crisis — but it was an important decade for the history of Indian food in the country, and by its end, South Asian cuisine had become a British staple. In 1971, on a stormy night in Glasgow, Scotland, a British Bangladeshi chef named Ali Ahmed Aslam improvised “Chicken tikka masala,” a dish now found on menus around the world, including at Halal Restaurant. Within five years, the United Kingdom boasted more than 2,000 “Indian” restaurants — the majority actually Bangladeshi operated — by some accounts, that number would grow to 3,000 by the decade’s close.
The building that houses Halal Restaurant dates to the 17th century and has witnessed the changing religious demographics of East London. On nearby Brick Lane, those changes are perhaps best expressed in the fate of a single building. A church opened by French Huguenots in the 18th century became a synagogue in the late 19th century and, in 1978, a mosque. The Brick Lane mosque took over the space to serve the growing Bangladeshi community as many Jewish families headed to the suburbs.
These cultural influences are apparent on Brick Lane where a person can find everything from kosher bagel sandwiches to halal tomahawk steaks. And it is not uncommon to find Muslim worshippers during Ramadan lined up for “salt beef beigels” in front of the area’s 24-hour Jewish bakeries.
Tower Hamlets, the area of East London where Halal Restaurant now sits, is home to more than 40 Islamic institutions and dozens of halal restaurants. Nearby is the East London Mosque, founded in 1985 and now one of Europe’s largest, able to accommodate 7,000 worshippers.
While estimates vary, today there are between 8,000 and 12,000 Indian restaurants in the United Kingdom, the majority of them halal. London itself is home to a diverse range of halal South Asian eateries. Dishoom, a small chain of restaurants that opened in 2010, pays homage to Parsi or (Zoroastrian) cafes, which are now vanishing across India. Meanwhile, Brig.s, which opened in 2018, is inspired by Indian military mess halls.
A number of new tourism-focused hotels have sprouted up near Halal Restaurant due to its proximity to the Tower of London. This has added a few extra evening diners, said Narangoli. East London’s seedy history has even become an unlikely tourist attraction.
Tours offer visits to sites associated with the Kray Brothers, twin brothers and East London gangsters, both portrayed by Tom Hardy in the 2015 film “Legend.” Another tour focuses on a different famous criminal: Jack the Ripper. That case was investigated in part by officers from the Leman Street Police Station, which opened in 1830. During its 20th-century heyday, many “bobbies” from the Leman Street Station packed Halal Restaurant until the station was shuttered in 1995.
The area’s edgy history and comparatively low rents have attracted a growing hipster scene. A coffee shop near the restaurant does a brisk trade and offers coffee laced with CBD. While hipster culture in the area is a relatively recent phenomenon, the its demographics may be changing again. Narangoli said the number of customers from East Asian countries is slowly increasing.
Social media campaign or not, the pandemic has made a dent in business, and there are nearby shops that have yet to re-open. Next door, a barbershop named Ahmed Scissorhands, a reference to the 1990 film “Edward Scissorhands,” remains shuttered. For a restaurant that survived the Blitz and the labor tumult of the 1970s, Narangoli is only cautiously optimistic about the long-term viability of the restaurant.
“Let’s see if things start to get better soon. We really hope the workers start coming to work again in the city (of London); that is when things can really turn around,” said Narangoli.


Nobu offers authentic taste to Japanese food lovers in Jeddah

Nobu offers authentic taste to Japanese food lovers in Jeddah
Updated 29 December 2021

Nobu offers authentic taste to Japanese food lovers in Jeddah

Nobu offers authentic taste to Japanese food lovers in Jeddah

JEDDAH: Renowned Japanese Nobu restaurant’s branch has opened on the popular Jeddah Corniche.

The new Nobu Jeddah is part of an expansion of the Nobu brand in Saudi Arabia, founded by chef Nobu Matsuhisa, Robert De Niro and Meir Teper, in partnership with Fakieh Leisure and Entertainment Group, Tarfeeh Fakieh.

It is located on the corniche that hosts many restaurants, cafes, as well as entertainment and artistic centers.

Nobu is at the heart of Al-Nawras Resort, the most iconic resort in Jeddah overlooking the Jeddah Corniche.

The newest member of the restaurant chain will not only bring the fabulous menu to the beachfront, but will also offer an elevated casual dining experience with stunning sea views.

Nobu, the world’s most recognized Japanese restaurant, known for its innovative new-style cuisine, is named after its head chef Nobuyuki Matsuhisa (Nobu-san).

It owes its global success to the high-quality, fresh ingredients and the unique concept of the fusion of Japanese and South-American cuisine.

Jamil Attar, CEO of Tarfeeh Fakieh, said: “We are so proud to unveil the signature Nobu Restaurant here in Jeddah and provide a renowned dining experience for locals and visitors on the seaside.”

Attar added: “Jeddah is home to world-class dining, and we are pleased to offer a spirited take on the signature Nobu experience within a warm and sophisticated atmosphere.”

He said that the Nobu restaurant is decorated with a modern design in its prime location on the Jeddah Corniche, providing a wonderful view of the Red Sea.

Tarfeeh Fakieh, the Kingdom’s leading provider of leisure, entertainment and edutainment continues to expand its growing portfolio in Jeddah.