The Sinhala and Tamil New Year is a celebration of harvest, sweet meats, happiness and plentiful blessings for the upcoming year. A time to spend with family and cherish old memories, of course while maintaining health guidelines, and share comfort from the knowledge ‘that we got past the challenges from the year that passed.’
It is also a time to indulge in scrumptious traditional sweets; that are either shop bought or made at home; the fun of sharing plates of food with your neighbours and family member that may include kokis, kevum, aluwa, asmi, bananas and creamy delicious kiribath!
However it is important to monitor ones ‘Avurudu indulgence’ as unhealthy eating and over indulgence during festive seasons have harmful consequences such as reducing the body’s ability fight off infections, most of all worsening the impact of chronic illnesses such as high blood pressure and increase blood sugar levels in the elderly especially.
Medical Nutritionist, Dr Senani Ranaweera says, “Nutrition is an important aspect of our lives. What we ingest, digest, absorb and utilise supports us with a good quality of life. With our fast paced lifestyle we may assume that eating healthy is tough, however good nutrition even during a celebratory time can be achieved”. Thus, Dr Ranaweera shares a few tips on how we can make our Avurudu healthier this year for you and your elderly loved ones
Having guilt-free moments to indulge is important, but how much and how often you treat yourself depends on your overall health especially the elderly. It is important to cut down calories through fat and sugar to prepare for the Avurudu week. Limiting the intake of fried food, fat portion control in your main meals, while increasing intake of fruits and non-starch vegetables.
2. Be mindful the week before and after
Being mindful the week before and after Avurudu can be a useful strategy to manage the impact of the sugar rich, oily food. For example, avoiding your Sunday slice of butter cake this week as you know that you will be diving into another two next week is a useful tactic.
3. Skip the sugar in your tea.
According to Dr Ranaweera, tea is a good antioxidant for our body, however when consumed with sugar we are introducing more unnecessary calories into our diet. Thus, avoiding your teaspoon full of sugar, at least for the Avurudu season, will help limit the amount of refined sugar intake.
4. Add some Sri Lankan leafy greens
Inculcating Sri Lankan fresh greens such as Gotu kola, Thebu kol and Karavila, mixed with some onions and lemon – sambol style, can be an interesting taste tantaliser as well as a good form of controlling blood sugar levels with their rich bioactive compounds.
5. Exercise and hydration!
Maintaining an active lifestyle with some movement is important and beneficial, even for the elderly, to manage health conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure along with improving ones overall health. Ensure that the momentum is kept up even during the holiday season to burn off the excess calories. Similarly, hydration is vital for the good function of our organs, including digestion, maintaining blood pressure and delivering oxygen throughout the body.
OPPO releases new OPPO A54 in Sri Lanka
OPPO, the leading global smart device brand, announces the launch of OPPO A54 in Sri Lanka.
A54’s attention to design and great usability is evident in both its exquisite appearance and how it helps to capture great looking shots. This starts with the Material of the Rear Cover, which uses metallic material for its 3D panel, but contributes to a stronger and less bendable structure but also a comfortable in-hand feel. As a result, A54 weighs about 192g and is 8.4mm thin. To align the overall look and feel of the phone, close attention is paid to the Middle Frame Process.
“A Series is designed to enhance or complement our users’ lifestyles and OPPO A54 achieves just this with a phone that manages to balance a high-end performance with contemporary design. Its large 5000mAh battery and 18W Fast Charge makes sure you’re fully powered to get you through your day. With A54, you’ll also have enough storage and memory to make sure that you’ll enjoy your entertainment without the frustrations of an underperforming smartphone,” said Bob Li, CEO, XINDA Lanka (OPPO Sri Lanka).
The Rear Cameras itself feature a 13MP Main Camera, 2MP Macro Camera for close range shots, and 2MP Bokehfor brilliant bokeh shots that blur the background and highlight the subject of the photo. A54 enhances shots in all environments with Dazzle Color, balancing the saturation and brightness. A54 also supports filming videos including SLO-MO at 720P at 90FPS with the rear camera, and up to 10 video Filters including Original, Gentle, Noon, Subtle and more.
Pan Asia Bank records best-ever Q1 results in challenging times – Profit After Tax soars by 81% to post Rs. 750 mn.
Pan Asia Banking Corporation PLC reported the best-ever first quarter financial results during the quarter ended 31st March 2021 to report a Pre-Tax Profit of Rs. 986 Mn and a Post-Tax Profit of Rs. 750 Mn after recording impressive growth rates of 51% and 81% respectively, demonstrating the resilience amidst challenging macro economic conditions. The Bank’s performance was characterised by strength and resilience, despite the heightened uncertainty due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Against the backdrop of the COVID-19 impact on the Sri Lankan economy, the Bank’s Operating Profits before VAT on Financial Services reached Rs. 1,197 Mn with an increase of 47%, reflecting excellence in core banking performance and the success of cost containment measures evidenced by improvement in all key matrices which now rank among the industry bests. This feat was achieved even after setting aside provisions for probable loan losses amounting to Rs. 638 Mn. The Bank increased the provision buffers for probable deterioration in credit quality through management overlays, experience adjustments and adjustments for the exposures in the elevated risk industries during the quarter. As a result, total impairment charges for the quarter increased by 21% on YoY basis.
The Bank’s Net Interest Income for the period witnessed an increase of 17% due to significant reduction in financial cost of funds at a rate faster than the drop in interest yields of interest bearing assets. Consequently, the Bank’s Net Interest Margin for the quarter improved to 5.07% from 4.41% reported three months ago. In the meantime, the Bank’s Net Fee and Commission Income recorded a growth of 28% with the rebound in demand for credit due to revival of economic activity amidst the low interest rate regime. The volatility in foreign exchange rates enabled the Bank to increase its Foreign Exchange Income substantially as reflected in Other Operating Income.
The Bank is committed to revenue maximisation and cost management despite sector vulnerabilities that prevailed since last year. The Bank’s Cost-to-Income Ratio improved from 45.66% to 38.08% within a three months period owing to the excellence in core banking performance which is reflected in the noteworthy overall growth in key revenue lines and various strategies and measures taken to contain overhead costs. In fact, the Bank managed to bring down its Other Operating Expenses by 9% in 2021 Q1 compared to 2020 Q1. Meanwhile, increased allocations for performance bonuses, development of human capital and staff welfare led to an increase in personnel costs during the reporting period compared to 2020 Q1.
The Bank’s Post-Tax Profits for the reporting quarter also gained to an extent due to application of lower corporate income tax rate of 24% for tax provisioning in accordance with the guideline issued by CA Sri Lanka on 23rd April 2021.
The Bank continues to report solid Key Profitability Indicators which rank among the highest in the industry. The Bank’s Pre-Tax Return on Assets also improved to 2.24% from 1.70%. Further, the Bank reported a stunning Return on Equity (ROE) of 19.27% during the quarter under review which stands among the industry best. The ROE is the most important performance indicator to gauge the attractiveness of the Banking sector and Pan Asia Bank during its last few years has consistently remained an outlier in the industry.
SLIIT nurtures school children at ‘Soft Skills + 2021’
The SLIIT Business School (SBS) organised ‘Soft Skills+ 2021’ concluded on an extremely successful note recently helping students engage, cooperate and thrive in building their talents towards personal development and career progression.
SLIIT Soft Skills+ event is an annual flagship CSR Project of the SLIIT Business School organized with the primary objective of developing secondary school students’ soft skills in positive thinking, creativity, analytical thinking, leadership skills, problem-solving skills, communication skills, and teamwork.
Over the years, the programme has garnered much popularity among schools and participants. Due to its tremendous success achieved in previous programmes, Soft Skills+ 2021 followed an upgraded structure. For the first time in the Soft Skills+ programme history, the event was held via online platforms, including a Soft Skills-based online quiz and an online workshop for students and teachers.
During the Grand Finale, Prof. Samantha Thelijjagoda, Dean of SLIIT Business School welcomed the participants and distinguished guests. Prof. Lalith Gamage, Vice Chancellor, SLIIT also addressed the gathering.
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