Sirin Kale
Sirin Kale
I write features mostly for @guardiang2 and am a Guardian angel for @gdnsaturday. Want to do something nice for a nice person? 📧 guardian.angel@theguardian.comSource
London, England
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A worker in winter: the hidden life of a GP – angry patients, anti-vaxxers, extreme goodwill and exhaustion

A worker in winter: the hidden life of a GP – angry patients, anti-vaxxers, extreme goodwill and exhaustion

In the first of a new series on the under-pressure workers holding the UK together in this difficult winter, doctor Laura Mount reveals how staff sickness, spiralling waiting lists and political pressure have left GPs on the brink. Laura Mount became a doctor – she visibly winces at repeating such a cliche – to help people. Also, she was good at school. Her dad was a chemist, which is where she got her love of science; her mum, who was a hairdresser, gave Mount her drive. “If you didn’t do well and get on with it, you knew,” says Mount. “She felt she missed out on all that. So she was...

Jan 25
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Beware sugar highs: seven healthy ways to get more energy – from stretching to sourdough

Beware sugar highs: seven healthy ways to get more energy – from stretching to sourdough

It’s tempting to use coffee and sweet treats as pick-me-ups, but they are only temporary solutions. Here’s how to keep yourself going for longerMon 5 Apr 2021 06.30 EDTLast modified on Mon 5 Apr 2021 06.33 EDT“Use exercise to nourish you, not punish you,” says , a clinical exercise specialist who works with people with cancer. “Find a way to move that will give you energy, rather than using exercise to tire yourself out.”To find motivation to get moving, even when you are feeling worn out or low, Russell encourages her clients to focus on achievable goals. “Even 10 minutes of movement will...

April 5, 2021
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'I was worried Lindsay, Paris or Britney would die': why the 00s were so toxic for women

'I was worried Lindsay, Paris or Britney would die': why the 00s were so toxic for women

Body shaming, media harassment, relentless cruelty – it’s time to reassess the decade that feminism forgotby Sat 6 Mar 2021 03.00 ESTI had largely forgotten about these incidents until I watched , the much-discussed documentary about the media intrusion that contributed to Spears’s 2007 mental health crisis, and her efforts to free herself from a conservatorship administered by her father. Watching footage of a 17-year-old Spears smiling politely as a male interviewer asked about her breasts brought everything back. My God, I thought. For young women and girls, the 2000s truly were a cursed...

March 6, 2021
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Think like a cat or pick up marbles with your toes: how to maximise your incidental exercise

Think like a cat or pick up marbles with your toes: how to maximise your incidental exercise

Getting fit isn’t all about Lycra and sweat, our everyday activities can also work wonders, with a bit of effortTue 2 Mar 2021 07.30 ESTLast modified on Tue 2 Mar 2021 09.00 ESTStamatakis tells me that incidental exercise, which is termed “intermittent lifestyle physical activity” by academics, is under-researched. But a he co-authored in 2018 found that sudden bursts of high-intensity incidental exercise – bounding up a flight of stairs, for example – could be highly beneficial from a health point of view, undermining the long-held belief that physical activity has to last at least 10...

March 2, 2021
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The tyranny of passwords – is it time for a rethink?

The tyranny of passwords – is it time for a rethink?

They are elusive, infuriating gatekeepers that rule our lives. Easy to crack and hard to remember, forgetting them is pricey – it cost Stefan Thomas £160m in lost bitcoinSun 31 Jan 2021 09.00 ESTThe tyranny of passwords; it colonises modern life. These petty dictators deny us access to our bank accounts, our baby photos, our phone contracts, even our heating. They reproduce as endlessly as bacteria, and yet, like Tupperware lids, you can never find the one you need. They are our boyfriends, our girlfriends, our children, our pets. A talented and motivated adversary could probably work yours...

January 31, 2021
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Head, shoulders, knees and toes: the best stretches to see off aches and pains

Head, shoulders, knees and toes: the best stretches to see off aches and pains

orking on a laptop in bed all day can be ruinous for your shoulders, back and overall wellbeing. “Your back won’t be supported very well,” says Fiona Houston, a physiotherapist and the founder of . “It will be slumped. Plus, if your legs are stretched out in front of you, you’ll be putting strain through your nervous system.” She explains that this runs from your brain to your spinal cord, all the way to your toes. “By sitting in bed with your legs out in front of you, and your head tilting downwards, at a laptop screen, you’re stretching that system continuously. It’s actually one of the...

January 20, 2021
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‘I see human resilience every single day’: people in tough jobs on how to stay hopeful

‘I see human resilience every single day’: people in tough jobs on how to stay hopeful

A hospice nurse, bereavement counsellor, firefighter, climate change lecturer and social worker share their secretsSun 10 Jan 2021 05.00 ESTAdam Graham, 41, hospice nurse, Newcastle upon TynePeople say: your job must be so depressing. It’s actually not. Of course there are sad moments, but they are few and far between. A hospice is not somewhere you go to die; many people return home. We specialise in palliative care, which means making the best of your life. Obviously death is a part of that. But death is a part of regular life, too. A lot of people who come here have lost hope; maybe...

January 10, 2021
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‘It feels like a lost year’: the women who fear 2020 has stolen their chance of motherhood

‘It feels like a lost year’: the women who fear 2020 has stolen their chance of motherhood

aturday mornings are the worst. Claudia, a teacher, wakes up alone in bed in her London flatshare. The weekend stretches out before her, an interminable expanse to be filled as best she can – with walks, and TV, and more walks. Sometimes, she finds it hard to summon the motivation to get out of bed. “It sounds dramatic,” Claudia says, “but I’ll lie there, thinking: ‘What’s the point of getting up?’”She goes over the arithmetic that has tortured her all year long. She will be 34 next month, single, no closer to finding a partner to have kids with. Even if she did meet someone next year, say,...

December 8, 2020
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The battle over dyslexia

The battle over dyslexia

It was once a widely accepted way of explaining why some children struggled to read and write. But in recent years, some experts have begun to question the existence of dyslexia itselfby Thu 17 Sep 2020 01.00 EDTLast modified on Mon 5 Oct 2020 10.01 EDTElliott thought that was weird, but what did he know? He qualified as an educational psychologist in 1986 and began practising. Over the next decade, he was often asked to assess children for dyslexia. At this time, most educational psychologists believed that dyslexia was a learning difficulty with a neurological basis, which affected bright...

September 17, 2020
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‘I was hammered for the first month of lockdown’ – meet the people who quit alcohol in the pandemic

‘I was hammered for the first month of lockdown’ – meet the people who quit alcohol in the pandemic

Despite the stories of people drinking more when confined to home, for many this has been a time to tackle their dependency Sun 6 Sep 2020 09.00 EDTLast modified on Sun 6 Sep 2020 14.44 EDTOn Sunday, her hangover was “horrendous”. “I was really ill, I had such a headache and I felt incredibly depressed,” she says. She held out for as long as she could, before cracking at about 5.30pm, and drinking another bottle of red wine. That day, Sunday 14 June, was the last on which Davies would drink alcohol. Enough.It was not that that day was a particular low: there had been plenty of others. There...

September 6, 2020
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