Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Derek Dee Takes Action Against Hepatitis C


Derek Dee started out as a photographer before he ventured into acting and movie production. His name is attached to titles such as Inay (1993), Sa Bingit ng Kamatayan (1996), and Rumble Boy (2007). But a lot of people associate him with ex-wife Melanie Marquez. Their short marriage was blessed with two daughters -  Maxine (22) who is a teacher based in Utah and Michelle (21) who recently began her modeling career for Bench and is steadily gaining ground in the industry.
These days, Derek busies himself with business and a new-found advocacy, which is the fight against Hepatitis C. 
Derek Dee, a Hepatitis C survivor...
 “One of the most common causes of liver-based sicknesses is Hepatitis C. According the Word Hepatitis Alliance, about 80 to 150 million people are dealing daily with Hepatitis C but there is not much information about it available. The main reason people die from Hepatitis C is because symptoms don’t show up until it is too late so you don’t know that you are sick,” he reveals.

 His own discovery of the illness was by accident. A routine blood test four years ago revealed that he had the dreaded disease. Doctors and his own research suggested that he may have contracted it through the use of contaminated needles in his younger days, around 30 years ago.

 “Four years ago, having Hepatitis C was a death sentence because there was no cure yet”. His search for a solution to his illness brought him many heartaches and disappointments. The only option he found were drugs which had deadly side effects and low cure rates. So he decided not to seek treatment.
Then two years ago, a medicine with a cure rate of 94%-97% was discovered but it was prohibitively priced. So he went into the digital realm to research his chances of getting the medicine outside the US where the drug was priced cheaper. This led him to Singapore General Hospital Pharmacy which was willing to order the miracle drug for him at a slightly lower cost.

A Rebel with a Cause...
After getting the treatment, he is now free of the virus and is officially cured. But he realized that these drugs are not affordable and accessible to many. This started him on a journey looking for generic medicines from India which cost so much less (USD1,000) than the original price of USD90,000. And now, with the new generic treatments that are very affordable and just as effective as the originals, the cure is available to all. 

 Armed with this knowledge Derek would like everyone to know that Hepatitis C is just a word, not a sentence. He now shares his experiences and insights and communicate these findings to other Hepatitis C patients and the public in general through his Facebook page, @hepcured and his website, hepcured.net. 

Derek with daughter Michelle...
 It is through constant updating and sharing of knowledge that the disease can be identified, battled, and defeated. Through HepCured, Hepatitis C patients can be part of a community of seekers for the cure, called The Cure Club. The Cure Club endeavors to search for treatments and remedies that are more accessibly priced and can be found in non-traditional sources.

 “I had so much doubt getting into this because of the stigma. I didn’t really want to come out, I just wanted to keep quiet. But the mission came up when a friend I haven’t talked with in many years suddenly showed up and the first thing he told me was that he has Hep C and he didn’t know anything about it, he was not aware that there is a cure. Shortly after that incident, another friend got in touch with me, with the same story. That’s when I decided to speak up. It doesn’t matter what people will think of me, if my advocacy can save the lives of even a few, then it would have been worth it,” he explains.
    For more information, please log in to www.hepcured.net or visit their Facebook page, @hepcured.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Gatorade Run is back for the second year!

 Conquering a 21 kilometer distance is a great feat, but can you do it over a kilometer more?

Gatorade Run 2016 is finally back and just as last year, it has an 11k and 22k categories. The Gatorade Run is one of the few races which gives a 10k run a kilometer longer and a “half marathon” a kilometer more challenging. If you are a sub-one in 10k and sub-two in 21k, can you still do it adding a kilometer more? Gatorade set that challenge because 22k is the new "half-marathon". 

Coach Rio Dela Cruz of RunRio and Mr. Tony Atayde of Gatorade
On its second year, Gatorade Run 2016 will be held on November 27, 2016 at the SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City. Last year, the run attracted more than 6,000 runners and are expected to have more this year. For online registration, you can log on to runrio.com for updates and a glimpse of their coolest running shirts. 
Ready to take the challenge...
In connection with this, after their very successful introduction of the Gatorade White Lighting last year, Gatorade launched another a new set of flavors that will sooth everyone’s thirst. Introducing the Gatorade Fierce with its three new exciting flavors namely, Green Apple, Torpical Fruit and Grape. I had the opportunity to test run these flavors in my practice runs and the fruity flavors are indeed give a refreshing feeling after an exhausting 16k run.

The new Gatorade Fierce with its three exciting flavors namely, Green Apple, Tropical Fruit and Grape...
What do we expect from this year’s run? Gatorade promises to make this running event more exciting while still focuses on pre- and post-run hydration. Pepsico Marketing Manager for hydration, Tony Atayde said. “Gatorade is global leader in sports performance and will definitely bring that expertise to the run. Learning the benefits of proper hydration, is crucial for runners and we look forward of reinforcing that message through Gatorade Run. We’re excited to show how, whether in sports hydration or a unique consumer experience, NOTHING BEATS GATORADE.”

Calvin Abueva, Gatorade Brand Ambassador...
Gatorade is an energy drink that boost not just your energy but also your optimum potential. The thirst quenching experience and the elements that powers to push you even further is what this drink is quite famous for. That is why the Gatorade Run 2016 made the distances one kilometer longer to give the runners one step higher in the test of endurance and strength. 

Thursday, September 22, 2016



HOOQ HANGOUTS, the biggest outdoor cinema event series from HOOQ, returns this Friday, September 23, 2016 to give its loyal subscribers another unique and memorable viewing experience and spread some Pinoy love.This time, HOOQ showcases its massive catalogue of local movies with a screening of the Every Breath You Take, starring Piolo Pascual and Angelica Panganiban. 

Majoy (Angelica Panganiban) is a romantic who desperately waits for her true love to finally come while Leo (Piolo Pascual), a bigtime sales executive in the real-estate business, is a career-driven playboy who does not believe in love at all. The two meet by accident on a Valentine’s Day, after Majoy’s failed date. She deems Leo as her destiny, she has never been surer that Leo is the one for her. Leo thinks otherwise. But as they find themselves growing closer to each other, the crazy and seemingly accidental events surrounding them seem to put their lives in danger! Unbeknownst to them, people are after them, determined to ruin their budding relationship, and will stop at nothing to get what they want! Will Leo and Majoy’s magnetic feelings for each other surpass the deeper dangers that face them? It all began as a fairy tale – but will the outrageous circumstances ever allow them to achieve their happily ever after?

“We are excited to continue HOOQ Hangouts with a Pinoy movie offering – and a story that’s close to our viewers heart,” says Jane Cruz-Walker, Country Manager of HOOQ Philippines.

“HOOQ is the prime destination for Filipino entertainment on demand with the largest library of local movies among any of the video-on-demand services in the country with over 4,000 hours of local television content which includes the best teleseryes, sitcoms and TV shows,” adds Cruz-Walker.

HOOQ Hangouts in cooperation with Samsung will regularly showcase blockbusters and all-time favorites through several massive LED screens at the Globe Iconic Entertainment Zone, transforming the BGC Amphitheater into a free outdoor cinema venue.  Viewers can use beanbags, blankets and cushions to enjoy the featured shows, participate in on-ground games and entertainment and munch on snacks from partner food concessionaires.

As an added treat, the acoustic duo and YouTube sensations Migs and Maya (member of the Pan-Asian vocal group, BLUSH) will help set the mood as they serenade the crowd with their repertoire of love songs and chart topping hits.
HOOQ is Asia’s largest video-on-demand service hosting over 10,000 movies and TV shows available for streaming or download.  Globe customers can get free access to HOOQ with selected GoSURF mobile data plans and as well as Broadband Plan 1299 and up.   Visit www.hooq.tv to sign up for a 7-day free trial.

How to get HOOQ

It’s easy to get HOOQ!  Sign up today for a 7-day free trial on www.HOOQ.tv.  Globe mobile customers can up to 90 days free HOOQ on selected GoSURF plans.  Broadband customers also get HOOQ for free on Globe Home Broadband.  Once the trial period expires, Globe customers can continue enjoying HOOQ at P149 subscription fee monthly charged to your Globe bill.  Simply text HOOQ149 to 8888.

HOOQ. Love Movies. Love Stories. Love Pinoy.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Alviera Hero Camp for the brave and the Bold…

When I was young I had asthma, so my pediatrician recommended my mother to allow me to be engaged in sports. As a young grade-schooler I had a little stint in many ball-sports, like soccer, basketball and volleyball, and after a few years, it worked, my lungs became stronger and my asthma was controlled. However, those ball games never got hold on to me as my regular sports. I don’t know why.

While I was in college, I was invited by my college friends to go mountain climbing and after several climbs, I was hooked. It seems that I’m more attracted to the outdoors and wilderness activities, most especially the camping, and sleeping in tents under night skies part of it. And not very long, the simple hiking and camping activities in the outdoors developed into more challenging outdoor sports, which also the context why I created this blog – Trails Unlimited.

Alviera, the next Nuvali of Central Luzon offers a different kind of outdoor activity that allows guests of all ages to a weekend of camping experience and its called The Alviera Hero Camp. A weekend-camper will have the opportunity to ride four SandBox attractions such as, Rollercoaster Zipline, the 10-meter high giant swing, Aerial Walk for Free-fall, wall climbing and rappelling. Along with these exciting rides and activities are skills training that are useful in helping others.

These training skills is the Hero Basic 101, where expert trainors teach basic survival skills. The KAPOW! Trianing is a crash-course on basic martial arts and self-defence and is facilitated and demonstrated by martial art masters. The creative side of the training programs is the Costume Crafting Corner where campers are taught how to make your very own super hero costume.

To field test all the trainings learned, the campers will have the opportunity to test their fighting skills by facing a “monster” in the Monster Obstacle Course in the Aqtiv Archery. In this challenge, Archers must target monsters and finish the course under a set time. They will also get to parade their super heroes costumes and go Trick-or-treating in participating booths and camp tents.

And finally, after a fun-filled day, every camper will get to relax and watch superhero movies under the night sky. This weekend camp is a special treat and the SandBox will exptend their operations until the evening. The Alviera Hero Camp is a one of a kind experience for not just kids but to the whole family.

The Alviera Hero Camp are available on Travel Factor’s website for P2,100 for a day adventurer and P2,950 for weekend campers. For more information, visit travelfactor.org/alvieraherocamp for more details.

About Alviera:

In partnership with Leonio Land, Alviera is an Ayala Land sustainable estate located at Porac, Pampanga, accessible via NLEX-SCTex. Envisioned to become a regional growth center of Central Luzon, it features a diverse mix of quality residential, industrial and commercial developments to support economic growth. 

Monday, September 19, 2016



“Men are from Mars, and women are from Venus,” John Gray once concluded. And we have to face the fact that there is some truth to it. Men and women are two completely different kinds of people, often dealing with problems and showing off their strengths in their own ways. They are so different that even their hair acts in a different way. In fact, studies show that men shed more hair than women and are more prone to baldness.

Every day, men are faced not only with countless challenges that test their mental and physical strengths, but also those that test the strength of their hair. It is subjected to countless rigorous activities on a daily basis, starting from their morning showers, to pollution from daily commute, stress from long hours at work and sweat from the gym right after. All these contribute to men’s increased vulnerability to hair loss.

Unfortunately, even today, men have not found a way to address this problem. More often than not, they only take action when they see visible thinning or balding, and by then, it may be too late.  
Dove Men+Care recognizes this, and wants to help real men address this concern early on, so that hair fall need not be part of the everyday challenge. Specifically engineered for men, Dove Men+Care Strengthening Shampoo has been formulated to ensure that men’s hair is ready for anything. Infused with caffeine, makes hair 5x stronger + less hair fall. So, whether they are family men taking care of children, or professionals making strides in their burgeoning careers, they can focus on honing their strengths, without worrying about hair fall.

Go ahead and #TestYourStrength with Dove Men+Care Strengthening Shampoo. Share with us how you continue to #TestYourStrength daily and tag us at @DoveMenCarePH.

Dove Men+Care Strengthening shampoo is available in all supermarkets, drug stores and department stores nationwide

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Converse Launches Its Fall/Holiday 2016 Collection Featuring Counter Climate Sneakers

Summer is definitely over and the rainy days are here once more!

Converse Counter-Climate: Chuck Tailor All Star II Canvas Shield...
A few months ago, we enjoyed the warmth of the summer by frolicking in parks, malls, and the beaches. For many of us, Converse's summer kicks were the ever-present footwear that can be worn for almost everyday occasions. In case you missed my previous posts, check out Converse's iconic Punk Rock legend Sex Pistols designs among others, and then shortly after, the Andy Warhol bright and fruity collections, which made it a talk-of-the-town among vacationing friends. 

Now that the rainy season is here again, many would say that it would limit one's fashion statement. Apparently, Converse says otherwise because it has recently launched a new set of weather proof sneakers that can be worn even under any monsoon. Converse calls this one the Counter Climate collection. 

Converse Counter-Climate collection comes in various designs and colors...
The Counter Climate collection features an entirely unique fabric that actually repels a few millimeters of rain shower. The two holes on the side were also sealed-off so that you can confidently walk through those shallow puddles that you may encounter along the way and not to worry that it will take in water. And finally, these cons are cladded with the Nike technology – Lunarlon insole for a more comfortable stride.

...with special fabric that repels rain water plus Lunarlon insole for a more comfortable fit
Last September 5, 2016, I got  the chance to witness the unveiling of the newest Converse Collection at Sky High Bar located at the roof top of Ace Hotel and Suites in Pasig City. The launch was graced by members of the media, executives from Converse Philippines, and celebrity endorsers Julie Ann San Jose, Bianca Umali and Benjamin Alves. 

Converse Celebrity endorsers: Julie Ann San Jose, Bianca Umali, and Benjamin Alves
While cocktail food were being served, we took the liberty of checking out the newest line of sneakers that included collections like the Jack Purcell, One Star Cons, and the classic Chuck Taylor All Star which has never gone out of style since 1932. The sneakers also highlighted the Lunarlon insole technology that was introduced by Nike after its acquisition of Converse years ago. 

After the program, guests flocked to the lower part of the bar to watch a surprise performance of The Dawn. Having known of their arrival early on, I hurriedly positioned myself in front for a better view of the show. The crowd, most especially people who grew up in the 80’s, were up on our seats and enjoyed singing along with Enveloped Ideas, the band's signature song that made them an instant hit during that time. The energy of Mr. Jett Pangan, the group's lead singer, and the rest of the members may have slowed down a bit but the voice and sounds are still the same. 

 80's iconic band - The Dawn!
After which, my wife and I took the opportunity to have a picture with Jett, who was wearing a Converse Chuck Taylor Andy Warhol edition. 

Me with Mr. Jett Pangan of the legendary 80's band - The Dawn
The Converse Counter Climate collection is already available online at the Converse Philippines website and in all Converse concept stores. Don't forget to visit Converse stores nationwide this September 12 -18, 2016, as you can also enjoy up to 50% off on selected Converse models!

Friday, September 9, 2016

NANBANTEI of TOKYO is now in Alabang Town Center…

If you say Japanese cuisine, people would always think about sushi, sashimi and all the raw sea foods that come along with it. But a particular Japanese dish many people didn’t know is the Yakitori. Yakitori means grilled chicken on skewer. But in Nanbantei, they offer a wide array of other grilled meat and vegetables on barbecue sticks.

A very visible signage at Nanbantei Alabang...

A few days ago, my wife and I had the opportunity to visit Nanbantei in their newly opened branch at the Corte dela Palmas, Alabang Town Center. The Nanbantei ATC is actually the third branch of the Nanbantei franchise that offers the unique side of Japanese cuisine. The restaurant offers a 90 seating capacity including the al fresco dining area near the veranda. The place also feature the typical Japanese sushi bar for those who prefer to eat in a casual dining experience.

Nanbantei Alabang caters to the yuppies of the bustling side of the metropolis...
Before we indulged in the Yakitori specials, we were served with some appetizers called Namayasai. These are chilled vegie-sticks such as fresh carrots, cucumber and turnip with the house special Miso paste dip, which made the vegie-sticks extra special.

Miso Soup. A great way to start a hefty meal...
It was my first time to eat at Nanbantei so I didn’t know what to order yet. The crew suggested we order the Best Seller Platter which consist of various the Yakitori dishes in one plate. We were told that it will take a while, so I ordered something familiar to me, which is Miso soup. It was a good starter while we patiently wait for more good stuff Nanbantei has to offer.

Namayasai. Fresh vegie-sticks with Miso paste...
Not very long, our Yakitori arrived. The Best Seller Platter is composed of three sticks of each, Tebasaki (Chicken Wings), Aspara Maki (asparagus wrapped with pork), Pork Garlic Yaki (Pork with garlic flavor), Tsukune (Chicken meat balls) and Beef Yakiniku (thinly sliced beef with Yakiniku sauce). What makes these Yakitori so special is, the grilled meats don’t have any saucy marinates like the usual barbeques, but the flavor is so delicious. I refuse to believe that it only has salt and pepper because it really taste so good. And lastly, the Best Seller Platter is served with three pieces of Corn on the cub and you also have the option to have it shredded and be served in a plate.

Best Seller Platter...

Mixed Sushi...
 We also had the taste of other Nanbantei favorites like, the mixed sushi where it has a bit of several types of sushi and sashimi in one plate. And for a refreshing drink that goes best with grilled dishes, is the Strawberry-Mango shake. You also need to try their house cocktail drink specialties like the Hibiscus Mojito, which feature Mojito with mint, Bacardi White Hibiscus Syrup, with Mint leaves and lime juice in soda water.

Strawberry and Mango shake...
And the best way to wrap up the fine afternoon is a chilling dessert, so we ordered the house specialty – the Black Sesame Ice Cream. Now, that definitely clad everything up.

Black Sesame seeds Ice Cream...

NANBANTEI Alabang is a breath of fresh air – its airy, cozy, uncluttered interior with minimalist modern accents and distinctive grilled yakitori dishes give one a glimpse of Japan’s culinary culture that can be savored and appreciated with every bite. It is open from 11am to 11pm, Sunday to Thursday and 11am to 12mn on Fridays and Saturdays. For inquiries, you can reach them at 772-0766. Like Nanbantei Philippines on Facebook, @nanbantei_ph for IG and twitter or you may also visit their website nanbanteiphilippines.com


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