Thursday, June 30, 2022

Professional Team Post-Pandemic Learnings and How They Apply to Weekend Warriors


A sports team’s coaching staff, trainers, dietitians, strength coaches, and sports scientists are experts that athletes rely on to ensure optimal performance. Their understanding of each athlete’s needs builds genuine relationships, fitness programs, and nutrition regimens for each athlete leading to better individual support. So, it’s no surprise that they become a fundamental part of players’ success. 

When COVID hit, professional athletes, coaches, and support staff were challenged to maintain this level of engagement. Athletes feared their performance might decrease, while sports performance coaches had to stay accessible even during these uncertain times. 

Similarly, people who aren’t professional athletes often have someone in their lives who they turn to for advice or accountability, whether it’s a nutrition coach or a trainer at the gym. They too had to learn to adjust to a new level of engagement.

Below we’ve shared sports performance practices that the LA Galaxy has learned over the past two years that can be applied to most weekend warriors who are returning to or even adopting healthy lifestyles post-pandemic.  

Combine Tech and Training to Stay Connected

The pandemic challenged connections with players and how we were able to access them. We adjusted our approach to ensure we stayed connected and could keep the athletes on track with their personalized nutrition and physical training plans, motivated to continue achieving their daily training targets and short-term goals, while also meeting the required steps to achieve long-term progressions. Social networking channels and video conferencing played a big part in maintaining a semblance of normalcy.

We also got creative by incorporating technology into the players' routines to track performance and training loads. We provided them with a variety of technology, like heart rate monitors, GPS tracking units, Apple Watch® wrist wearable devices, and Oura® smart rings, which measure and monitor specific physical performance data such as resting heart rate, target heart rate zones during training, distance, high-speed running and sprinting, sleep duration and quality, and fatigue levels. By involving the athletes more in the data collection process, they became more accountable and aware of the importance of the data we were collecting and its impact on performance. We also made ourselves available to them to explain and interpret this data to continuously evolve their goals.

Staying connected with your fitness and nutrition muses isn’t just for professional athletes. These technologies are available for consumers and are a great resource to stay connected when in-person meetings are impossible. Additionally, using fitness tech together with the advice of a health coach or personal trainer can be beneficial because professionals have the interpersonal skills that help reframe any confusion or feelings of doubt into positive actions.

Maintain Trust and a Sense of Community for a Healthy Lifestyle

The sports industry’s success relies heavily on camaraderie, in-person support, and fanfare. Our athletes at the LA Galaxy are used to being surrounded by their teammates and coaches 11 months out of the year. Research has shown that camaraderie supports better psychosocial health, and benefits competence, character, confidence, and other critical components of positive growth. To help them feel they had the same one-on-one focus and support, during the pandemic we had to individualize their fitness sessions and create effective nutrition plans that the athletes could follow at home.

Perhaps most important in ensuring the athlete’s success were virtual check-ins which fostered personal interactions. We used the time to educate them on nutrition, and funny enough, they weren’t distracted by other activities, as they may have been under normal circumstances. These one-on-one, virtual check-ins allowed us to maintain human connection. Finding new ways to help athletes learn how to cook or engage them in cooking competitions helped maintain a competitive spirit while also building a sense of community.

Making significant, long-term lifestyle changes includes proper nutrition, physical activity, a personalized plan, and support. It's about more than a single one-size-fits-all solution. Surrounding yourself with people who share your values, whether in person or virtually, will hold you more accountable to show up, learn new things, and work harder. It also has a more calming effect than doing the work alone. A consistent exercise regimen, a supportive community, and balanced nutrition are vital components of a holistic approach to a healthy and happy life.

Prioritize Physical and Mental Recovery 

Another important learning was that recovery is not just resting or stretching after a game or training, but also facilitating mental recovery. Over the past years, with stress from many sources, be it from isolation, performance anxiety, or social media stressors, it was important to develop strategies to manage it all.  As their coaches, it’s not only our job to help them achieve their performance goals but to also protect their overall mental health.

Since being back in person at the training facility, we have maintained a focus on promoting positive mental health and reducing their cognitive loads. With life’s daily disruptions taking up more time and mental capacity, we try to take the “thinking” out as much as possible so they can focus on their game. We do everything we can to help them de-stress by placing a huge emphasis on maximizing recovery days. When possible, we try and vary the recovery routine for the players and some activities include beach volleyball, pool sessions, ocean swims, bike rides, and upper body gym sessions. Another addition to the program was allowing the players to sleep in and do recovery yoga sessions via Zoom from home after packed travel schedules After the class we would remind the players to focus on hydration and quality nutrition while away from the club.

Recovery after exercise is an important part of any workout routine, no matter your level of athletic performance. Post-exercise recovery is critical for muscle strengthening and repair. A good recovery routine will not only help you avoid future injuries but will also have a significant impact on your fitness goals, allowing you to get back on track and train more efficiently. A combination of nutrients is essential for accelerating muscle recovery. Hydrating before, during, and after a workout, whether with water, tea, or shakes, will help replenish nutrients lost during your workout.

Whether you are a professional athlete or a weekend warrior, you can train your body and mind to perform at their optimal levels through these lessons learned. 

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Slay every look with Spotlight 8-in-1 Scene Stealer eyeshadow palette


Spotlight 8-in-1 Scene Stealer Eye Palette

When it comes to makeup, nothing tugs at the heartstrings of beauty enthusiasts like the best eye shadow palettes. Whether you want to keep it subtle or want to experiment with a dramatic look, eyeshadows are guaranteed to let your eyes do all the talking! To help create your stylish, day-to-night look, and full-on glam,  Spotlight Cosmetics’ 8-in-1 Scene Stealer Eye Palette is all you need to achieve the  look you want. 

This eyeshadow palette comes in 6 mattes and 2 shimmer shades that can be used to create timeless makeup styles or fierce  looks for any occasion. It’s also perfect for all skin tones! 

Starting off with its blockbuster nude matte shades, you can be an instant head-turner with its selection of light brown finish, rusty orange, dark brown, pinky beige, and dark purplish-black shades. 

Dreaming of a sophisticated and alluring glam? The 2 shimmer shades of this eyeshadow can let you do just that! Top up your makeup look with the champagne or copper brown shimmer finish and have eyes that hypnotize! 

This eyeshadow set has smooth and easy-to-blend pigments and a multipurpose palette that is perfect to use as brow powder, eyeliner, and to contour, blush, and highlight your sleek eyebrows for that extra elegant and stunning glam!

Elevate your natural beauty and steal the scene whenever, and wherever with the Spotlight 8-in-1 Scene Stealer Eyeshadow! This product is exclusively available at Watsons, Watsons Online, ShopSM, and The SM Store Beauty Section. 

Spotlight products are also available on Spotlight’s official Lazada  ( and Shopee pages (  For more updates, visit and like Spotlight Cosmetics on Facebook (@SpotlightCosmeticsPH) and Instagram (

Rex Education Holds First BPE Congress Promoting The Whole School Approach Nationwide


Challenges to welfare and academic performance continue to impact the development of Filipino learners nationwide.

According to the results of the Program for International Student Assessment or PISA 2018 Report, 65% of the 15-year-old Filipino students who were surveyed reported being bullied at least a few times a month. Some 26% expressed they feel lonely at school, while 29% skipped a day of school. 

On top of the challenges in student welfare, the academic performance of Filipino students is just as alarming. In the same study, 81% of the students scored below minimum proficiency levels in reading, mathematics, and science compared to most countries that participated.

Rex Education, a champion of education and the lifelong learning partner of every Filipino learner, believes that every learner’s overall wellbeing impacts their academic performance. Schools and other education duty-bearers are expected to continue investing in the learners’ holistic development.

“What we should focus on is the learners’ long-term success and not just immediate academic performance. It is no longer enough that our children are in school; they should also be healthy and safe. It is no longer enough that they are taught; they should be engaged, supported, and challenged. It is no longer enough that they become responsible adults; they should be values-oriented. It is no longer enough that we go about our traditional fair share of work; we need to consciously champion education,” said Don Timothy Buhain, chief executive officer of Rex Education.

Bawat Paaralan, Edukampyon

In response to the challenges in Philippine education, Rex Education launched the ‘Bawat Paaralan, Edukampyon’ (BPE) continuum in 2021. Born under REX’s Edukampyon advocacy that rallies all Filipinos to champion education, the BPE continuum is a whole school approach that hopes to become a new standard of best practices in learning institutions across the country, so that every school maximizes its capacities to ensure that all learners are healthy, safe, engaged, supported, challenged, and values-oriented—that they become ‘Filipino Whole Learners’.

The whole school approach has been defined by the UNESCO International Bureau of Education as “addressing the needs of learners, staff and the wider community, not only within the curriculum but across the whole-school and learning environment. It implies collective and collaborative action in and by a school community to improve student learning, behavior and wellbeing, and the conditions that support these.”

Dr. Alison Atwell, an international consultant on Whole School Improvement, explained how the BPE lines up with the global understanding of the whole school approach: “In line with the breadth of international research and international good practice, the components that are essential to a whole school approach are very strongly correlated to the elements of the Bawat Paaralan, Edukampyon continuum. This framework aptly provides us the groundwork as we move forward.”

The BPE program covers the six facets of development—healthy, safe, engaged, supported, challenged, and values-oriented—and how the seven domains of learning support and influence (Professional Development; School Culture and Climate; Leadership and Responsibility; School, Family, and Community; Teaching and Learning; Learning Environment; and Curriculum and Assessment) contribute to learners becoming whole. 

Since its conception in 2015 and its launch in 2021, the BPE continuum has been successfully integrated into private schools nationwide. Several schools have been identified to work with Rex Education, guided by the BPE Implementation Kit developed in consultation with experts from the academe and DepEd. The schools are Cabulay Elementary School, Divisoria High School, Sagana National High School, and San Andres Elementary School in Isabela; Rosario National High School and St. Edward Integrated School in Cavite. Canossa Academy in Laguna; Cherished Moments School in Pangasinan; Colegio de Santa Rita de San Carlos, Inc. in Negros Occidental; Ednas School in Alaminos and Dagupan; and the Maranatha Christian Academy of Manila.  

Celebrating evidence-based and best practices in a 2-day BPE Congress

To inspire more schools to follow suit and implement the BPE continuum, Rex Education conducted a 2-day online BPE Congress attended by educators and education stakeholders across the country. 

Held on May 13 and 20, 2022, the congress celebrated the journey of creating and implementing the BPE program and featured experts to help attendees understand how this framework can also provide ways to build and observe evidence-based practices and processes within educational institutions.

Dr. Jerome Buenviaje, dean of the College of Education at the University of the Philippines and one of the REX’s partners in developing the BPE continuum, talked about the journey of BPE in institutionalizing evidence-based practices in schools. Ms. Rita Atienza, director of the Ateneo Teacher Center, gave a recap on Edukampyon as an advocacy and how it is implemented in the BPE continuum. Dr. Alison Atwell, an international consultant on Whole School Improvement, delved into understanding the potential of the whole school approach.

On the second day of the BPE Congress, the pioneering schools also shared how they were able to implement the BPE continuum through a strategic phase-by-phase system—and how doing so helped them elevate the developmental goals they had in place for their students.

“As a school, we strive to be relevant amidst the changing educational landscape and be responsive to the community we serve. We believe that using the BPE continuum has enabled our school to maintain quality education and initiative reforms when necessary. The BPE continuum also paved the way for us to organize our actions towards the holistic development of our learners from the bottom up,” said Sr. Luzviminda Mojica, FdCC, school directress of Canossa Academy.

Wrapping up the BPE Congress, Rex Education Chief Marketing Officer Jeanne Marie Tordesillas assured all educators that the BPE Implementation Kit is available for free for all institutions and that Rex Academy is ready to provide support and guidance for its execution. 

“The whole school approach works. The BPE as a whole school approach is implementable. There are decades of research and experience backing that. We have the BPE pioneers to attest to that.  The key is to listen to all the heartbeats in the school and to act until you can hear all the hearts beat as one. REX remains committed to being an Edukampyon and supporting fellow Edukampyons,” said Tordesillas.

Rewatch Day 1 and Day 2 of the BPE Congress from the Rex Education Facebook page.

To know more about the Edukampyon advocacy and the BPE continuum, and to become a part of this nationwide initiative for better education, visit or email Rex Education at

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Designing a Workplace Culture with Pride

How Canva Philippines champions diversity and inclusion in the workplace

Express yourself with Canva’s new collection of playful, illustrative Pride templates.

Creating an inclusive work environment is more than just lip service. It requires listening, understanding, and constantly evolving a company’s processes to ensure that every employee feels included and understood.

Canva Philippines, with its over 700-strong workforce, celebrates diversity beyond the much-celebrated Pride Month of June. Every day, Canvanauts are encouraged to celebrate and embrace their identity at work and beyond. 

Advocating for equal rights through education

Yuni Lao, a senior brand designer at Canva Philippines, marries her passion for creativity, education, and equality through the different hats she wears. Aside from her work at Canva where she helps conceptualize and bring ideas to life through various design applications, Yuni also advocates for human rights and equality for different gender expressions and identities. She is also a design lecturer at Ateneo de Manila University and a content streamer.

Yuni Lao, Senior Brand Designer at Canva Philippines, champions gender equality through her design craft and passion for teaching.

As a bisexual woman, Yuni realized there’s more she can do to educate others. She lets her advocacy bleed into her work and in her class, “I try to impart to my students that the space I make for them is something they can have even outside the classroom,” Yuni shared. Aside from talking about her sexuality openly to make her class feel more comfortable, she also encourages them to propose topics that they care about through class projects.

Geryl Minguillo, a learning designer in Canva University, also brings his advocacy to work. Canva University is the company’s learning and development unit. “Gender rights, specifically LGBTQIA+, rights, is something I feel extremely passionate about. Growing up as a closeted gay kid, I’ve experienced being teased and bullied about my self-expression,” Geryl said. 

It wasn’t until college when he fully embraced who he is and got exposed to the different realities of LGBTQ+ individuals. He continues to join, advocate, and celebrate at Pride where he meets more people from the community and learns about their experiences. Now, through his work in Canva Philippines, he helps champion this advocacy through Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) sessions for newbies and educating fellow Canvanauts from using respectful and nondiscriminatory language and understanding someone’s preferred pronouns to practices that cultivate behaviors of inclusion. 

“In my first week at Canva, one of the first things I shared with everyone, in my newbie intro, was that I’m a gay-mer. 2 facts in 1. And I’ve never felt more welcomed in my life! The level of safety and openness I experienced was inspiring,” he added. 

Geryl Minguillo advocates for diversity through his role as a learning designer in Canva Philippines

Championing diversity from people to product

Canva Philippines Country Manager Yani Hornilla-Donato highlights the importance of fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace to enable employees to do the best work of their lives. “We encourage Canvanauts to bring their whole selves to work and be proud to share them with others. Whether they’re advocating for an organization or want to educate others about gender equality, we aim to provide them with an environment where they feel welcomed and appreciated.”

From hiring to doing the actual work, every Canvanaut gets the support they need through DEI learning sessions, various interest clubs, accessibility features at the office, and even Slack channels dedicated to sharing resources. ​​Hiring is also made inclusive through conducting accessibility and awareness training for the talent acquisition team, organizing a diverse interview panel, and investing in Textio, a tool that assesses the use of inclusive languages for job ads. 

Canva also allows Filipinos to design with pride with its new collection of playful and illustrative Pride templates following a Filipino retro style. From Instagram stories to podcast covers, these templates can be used by anyone who wants to design with pride. 

To know more about Canva, visit or follow Canva on Facebook, Instagram, and Tiktok. Canva is also available for download on App Store and Play Store.

Monday, June 20, 2022

What unfiltered motherhood is really like


Being a mom is the most fulfilling, yet most difficult job in the world. There are some who make it look like a breeze and others who show the actual journey and reality that this full-time job entails. On top of the daily to-do list of work tasks, taking care of the kids, and having time for yourself, are the household chores such as actual laundry, dishes, and cooking that take hours and a significant amount of effort and physical labor. 

As motherhood has endured the toughest struggle in the past two years, it’s not always as glamorous as social media makes it out to be. Recently, more and more moms have been revealing an unfiltered look into motherhood, as a way to help other moms find solutions to make life easier and better for themselves and their kids. 

For mom Apple, motherhood may not be as manageable in terms of following a certain schedule but amidst all the chores, she has found a solution to cross off one big item from her checklist: “Managing the household is tough! The chores are never-ending. Looking after my son during and after school is also a challenge. And of course, doing the laundry with tough stains means extra work for me. Thanks to Breeze Power Machine, laundry time is much easier now.”

Mommy and Doctor Crystal Roxas shares that she has found the ultimate secret of power moms by making sure she’s there for her son every time even while working hard “To be able to provide for my little Nate, I have to work extra hard while making sure that I’m by his side when he needs me most. ❤️ I always want to give him the best.” she says.

Momshie Patricia Parian shares her secret to making laundry a breeze: “Bilang working mom, isa sa mga challenges ko ang paglalaba dahil kailangan dito ng matinding effort. Pero napadali na ito gamit ang #BreezePowerMachine. Tanggal agad ang dumi in one wash”

Mommy Tine understands the demands of being a mom and has found one big solution to cross off her list: “Managing the household is a juggling act. Kaya naman I need to find ways to balance everything… kids, meals, cleaning, lalo na sa laundry. So I can spend more time with the kids. Buti na lang I found #BreezePowerMachine liquid detergent! Now I can spend less time on chores and more time with my kids.”


Mom Charlene Tolentino shares her advice on how she can take time for herself: “As a millennial stay-at-home mom, always busy with the chores and taking care of my kids. I hardly find time to do other stuff. So, I'm always on the lookout for products to make my life easier. The #BreezePowerMachine Liquid Detergent lets me power through laundry and gives me more quality time with my children and time for myself.”

Although motherhood may not be a walk in the park, there are communities and brands like Breeze that can offer you easy and powerful solutions to lighten your load, and make your tasks less of a chore and more of a superpower. 

Breeze Power Machine Liquid Detergent makes laundry so much easier as it penetrates fabrics and removes tough stains better than powder detergents. Thanks to its ultraclean concentrate and the Golden Trio of power washing - that is surfactants, dirt-lifters, and enzymes - you just need to dab-pour-wash and let your washing machine do the work. Now all hard-working moms can make the switch from powder to liquid detergent to turn laundry into a Breeze!

You are just in time for the Big Breeze Sale on Lazada this June 22-26 where you can get up to 30% OFF on Breeze products. More than that, you can also get a chance to win a washing machine with a minimum purchase of Php 599. Discounts and offers don’t end there! Throughout this five-day sale, you can also get up to 50% OFF on other Unilever Household Care products as well until stocks last.

Shop now on Lazada and catch the Big Breeze Sale:

Saturday, June 18, 2022

Pldt, Smart, And Canva Philippines Champion Mental Health And Wellness Through Art


Through The Time Capsule Project, PLDT and Smart continue their commitment to championing mental health and wellness through art, an initiative made possible through a partnership with Canva Philippines, Mind Games, and Silakbo.

As part of a month-long celebration of Mental Health Awareness Month this May, PLDT and Smart empower the youth across the country to champion mental health and wellness through art with its campaign, "The Time Capsule Project”. With support from Canva Philippines, youth participants are encouraged to use art as a form of mental healthcare.

The Time Capsule Project invited the youth to share their stories, by using art in the forms of music, spoken word, photography, and visual arts. The top five participants recently won PHP 10,000 worth of connectivity packages from PLDT and Smart and a three-month premium subscription from Canva Philippines. They also had an opportunity to donate to their chosen mental health advocacy groups.

“As we hold the second run of The Time Capsule Project, we are very happy and privileged to get support from Canva Philippines as we champion our shared advocacy on mental health and wellness. We are looking forward to the many stories that our participants will share. It is our hope that together we can enable a generation of storytellers and purveyors of truth in the digital space,” said Katherine P. Diaz De Rivera, PLDT and Smart Stakeholder Management Digital Wellness Executive.

“Expressing yourself through design can be powerful and we believe in its power to raise awareness on mental health and wellness. With this initiative, we hope that the participants will find Canva a useful tool in expressing themselves through our mental health-related templates, a vast range of elements, audio clips, and even stock photography. Collaborating with PLDT and Smart in this meaningful initiative enables us to be a force of good in the lives of our youth participants as they design better days ahead for themselves and those around them,” said Canva Philippines Country Manager Yani Hornilla-Donato.

The Time Capsule Project kicked off with a special masterclass on content and visual creation led by Junior Designer Dre Agar, who is also part of Canva Philippines’ Video Squad. Through the app, anyone can design and use Canva’s features whenever they want, wherever they may be. Users can play with filters, pair fonts, add photos and fun elements, mix and match colors, and use Canva’s vast range of templates for all their design needs. The app is available for download on App Store and Play Store. 


About Better Today

Better Today is a key part of PLDT and Smart’s continuing commitment to help the Philippines contribute to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDG), particularly UNSDG #3 which stands for good health and well-being.

About Canva

Launched in 2013, Canva is a free online visual communications and collaboration platform with a mission to empower everyone in the world to design. Featuring a simple drag-and-drop user interface and a vast range of templates ranging from presentations, social media graphics, posters, and apparel to videos, plus a huge library of fonts, stock photography, illustrations, video footage, and audio clips, anyone can take an idea and create something beautiful. Canva is available on desktop, web, iOS, and Android.

Thursday, June 16, 2022

18 Million Filipinos are Suffering from the "Silent Epidemic"


Did you know that at least 18 million Filipinos are either suffering from or at the risk of a disease considered a silent epidemic?

As a mom, hearing this data from an expert during the online press conference organized by the Hepatology Society of the Philipines (HSP), entitled "Fatty Liver Facts: What You Need to Know About This Silent Epidemic", I was alarmed and I was worried for myself, my family, my friends, especially my kids.

Silent epidemic
Fatty Liver disease is also called the " silent epidemic" which affects 115 million people around the world. It has no symptoms at the early stages, which is why many people are unaware that they have it until it's too late.

How it is initially detected?
- often accidentally diagnosed
- fatty liver on ultrasound
- abnormal ALT or SGPT on routine tests
- may have normal blood tests

According to Dr.Allan Policarpio, President of the Philippine Society of Gastroenterology, fatty liver disease is a little-known, potentially fatal condition affecting many people. He also added that the public can learn about it by listening to experts.

There are two types of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)non-alcoholic fatty liver (NAFL) and its more progressive type, the non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). The main characteristic of both is too much fat stored in liver cells. Having small amounts of fat in the liver is normal, but it becomes a problem if more than 5% to 10% percent of the liver’s weight is fat.

As the prevalence of NASH continues to rise, it is important to understand the signs and symptoms to look out for:
➡️ jaundice
➡️ flu-like symptoms, fever
➡️ nausea and vomiting/diarrhea
➡️ joint pains, muscle aches
➡️ upper right stomach pain
➡️ lack of appetite
➡️ tiredness
➡️ light-colored stools/ dark urine

"The Philippines has over 18 million obese and overweight people. They are all susceptible to NAFLD, noted Dr. Diana Alcantara-Payawal, President of the Philippine College of Physicians. “Some of them may already have fatty liver disease but are unaware of it,” she added. 

Dr. Edhel S. Tripon of HSP stated that fatty liver is the fastest rising cause of liver cancer and cirrhosis worldwide. "People who are overweight, diabetic, or hypertensive are prone to developing fatty liver.”

Our liver is the largest internal organ. It cleanses our blood, regulates cholesterol, regulates the balance of hormones, makes important body proteins, regulates essential vitamins and minerals, produces bile: for toxin elimination, and helps digestion.

Dr. Tripon also stressed the importance of keeping the liver healthy. “The liver is a multitasking hard worker, so it is important to keep this organ as healthy as possible. A healthy liver is fundamental to wellness.”

To lower the risk of developing fatty liver disease, HSP Vice President Dr. Wendell Z. Espinosa said “we need to raise awareness about how to avoid modifiable risk factors among adolescents and young adults. We need to increase the public's awareness about nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, which would likely lead to better prevention, early detection, and treatment of the disorder.”

What can we do to lower the risk of NAFLD?
✔ maintain a healthy weight and exercise most days of the week
✔ limit sugar; choose a plant-based diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fats
✔ ask your physician about screening for NAFLD and NASH.

The Hepatology Society of the Philippines is the lead organization in the study and care of liver health and disease among Filipinos. HSP provides research, education, and advocacy on liver health and liver-related diseases. Part of its mission is to share information, services, and expertise with the global community towards the prevention and treatment of liver diseases.

Together, we can #StopNASHnow! Keep moving.
No liver, no life!

Meet Conti's Dad Bakers: Sweet Heroes both in the Kitchen and at Home

The dad bakers of homegrown food chain Conti's Bakeshop and Restaurant are a special kind of hero. They are tough and soft and sweet at the same time, both at work and home. They are not just a part of the team that whips up the brand’s beloved cakes and pastries by the thousands daily at the Conti’s commissary.

They are fathers who work hard to provide their families with a better life while helping other families all over the country mark their special occasions, and even ordinary moments, with delightful celebrations.

Some of them have faced tough times in life but were able to succeed because of their love for family, determination, and courage.  

Conti’s Bakeshop and Restaurant multi-layered torte supervisor Limwil Galdiano 

Kailangan ko talaga ng trabaho para ma suportahan ko ang pamilya ko, kaya ‘di na ako nag-atubili pa,” recalls Limwil Galdiano of his humble beginnings in the bakeshop founded 25 years ago and owned by the Conti sisters of Batangas. “Sabi ko sa sarili, sige, kakayanin ko ‘to.”

Limwil has been with Conti’s for almost a decade now. Back in 2013, he was already a father to a 6-year-old son. He had also been a cook for 10 years. What he did not have any experience yet at the time was baking.

“Go for a change,” he says in retrospect. “Hindi lang po sapat ‘yung nag excel ka sa isang bagay. Kelangan din po nating lumabas sa comfort zone natin at mag explore at sumubok ng ibang skills.” 

Conti’s gave Limwil that perfect opportunity to widen his skills and broaden his horizon as a professional. Most importantly, it helped him make a better living for his family.

Taking on the challenge has paid off. Today, Limwil takes utmost satisfaction and pride in his work as a Conti’s baker because he knows that his talent and skills bring smiles to the faces of strangers.

“Kahit may pressure, kahit pagod, nakakagana pong magtrabaho pag nakikita mong nauubos lahat ng napoproduce namin at pinipilahan po ‘yung stores,” he beams. “Nakakaproud po.”

Conti’s Bakeshop and Restaurant baker Renato Sanorjo and officer-in-charge in production Edmond Alcoran

Like Limwil, fellow Conti’s dad baker Renato Sanorjo had been working in the kitchen of a fast-food chain before joining Conti’s. The big difference was he was very far from his family as the job was in Saudi Arabia. 

Madami talagang pagsubok na pwedeng harapin at bilang tatay,” Renato says. “Mas mahirap ‘yung kapag hindi mo kapiling ang anak at pamilya mo.”

Although financial support is important, the former OFW emphasizes the importance of being physically present to create a deeper connection with your children.

Bilang isang haligi ng tahanan, dapat matatag ka, masipag ka, matiyaga ka para masuportahan o maibigay mo ang pangangailangan ng pamilya mo. Hindi lang materyal kundi pati ‘yung sa pisikal at emosyonal para maging maayos at maganda ang kinabukasan nila.”

These very same sentiments are shared by Edmond Alcoran, a longtime Conti’s employee who started out as an assistant baker and now holds the position of Officer-in-Charge of Production. “Maraming challenges financially, emotionally, and physically,” he echoes. “So ang pinakamaganda ay kapag sa huli, nalagpasan niyo ang pagsubok sa buhay.”

One of the biggest challenges that Edmond had to surmount as a father came early this year when his third child was born prematurely. “Kakaibang pagsubok ang pinagdaanan ko,” he notes. “Pero dahil na rin sa karanasan ko sa pagiging ama ng unang dalawang anak ko, at ‘yung mga natutunan ko sa trabaho, nakaya namin ng asawa ko ang mga hamon.”

Edmond says patience and having a clear direction are very important both as a baker and as a father. “Hindi pwedeng magmadali ka. As a baker kasi, merong standard procedure. Kelangan may patience ka na sundin ‘yun. Kelangan i-manage natin lahat ‘yun para may direction. Ganun din sa pagiging tatay. Kelangan ang mahabang pasensya. Kelangan ang tibay ng loob.”

Meeting big challenges is never easy. Even tough men need all the help they can get. Fortunately for the dad bakers of Conti’s, the company’s family-oriented philosophy not only makes them grow, but it also makes them glow.

Sa Conti’s, challenges are a means to constantly improve, to make ourselves better and make relationships tighter,” notes Angie Conti-Martinez, one of the three sisters who founded Conti’s 25 years ago. “We are happy to be part of the professional and personal journeys of our dad bakers and are proud of their achievements in the company and their families.

There is no perfect father, just as there is no one way to be a good father. Dads, just like cakes, come in all shapes, sizes, and parenting styles. But no matter what and who they are, dads are everyday superheroes who deserve to be celebrated on Father’s Day but every single day – with Conti’s cakes for a truly delightful celebration.

To know more about Conti’s Bakeshop & Restaurant, visit their website at or check out their Facebook (@contisph) and Instagram (@contis_ph) pages. Other pages bearing our name and images are fake. They do not in any way represent the brand. 

Give the gift of healthy and delicious homemade meals this Father’s Day


Ajinomoto shares special less sodium recipes to elevate dad's day at home


Father’s Day is just around the corner and one of the best ways to show your appreciation for your dad is by cooking a delicious and nutritious meal made with lots of love.


“Dads are known to be very hardworking and put their loved ones first before themselves. This is why we, at Ajinomoto, would like to help in putting their health and happiness first this Father’s Day by sharing healthy but delicious recipes that they will surely enjoy,” said Roann Co, Ajinomoto Philippines Corporation (APC) General Manager of Corporate Planning and Public Relations.


Below are special recipes made healthy and delicious through the use of AJI-NO-MOTO® Umami Seasoning that helps in reducing sodium without compromising taste. These recipes are part of Ajinomoto’s BawAsin® or Bawasan ang Asin campaign, an effort that encourages consumers to reduce their sodium intake without sacrificing the deliciousness of their meals.


Ajinomoto has created a BawAsin® section on its official website. It provides information that reducing sodium in the diet is not difficult or will result in bland food.  The site features 100 less sodium creative recipes that help individuals enjoy meals that contain less sodium yet enjoy the same deliciousness.


Elevated dining with Creamy Salmon Garlic

Even through home dining, sophistication is possible with this hearty plate of Creamy Salmon Garlic. Rich in protein, salmon helps in muscle building and repair perfect for dads who like to stay active and work out. Not only that, the dish is rich in vitamin D for maintaining good bone density. This recipe works with the elegance of salmon fillet, all-purpose cream, cooking wine, parmesan cheese, spinach, garlic, onions, and AJI-NO-MOTO® Umami Seasoning. Check out the full recipe here: Creamy Salmon Garlic


Comfort with a twist in Chicken in Herb and Mustard

On the other hand, if you want something familiar with a little bit of a twist, Chicken in Herb and Mustard may just do the trick. It is rich in protein and high in zinc, which helps maintain the heart’s health and the body’s immune system. This dish can be made in as little as 15 minutes too, using ingredients such as chicken, mustard, lemongrass, thyme, and AJI-NO-MOTO® Umami Seasoning. Full recipe here: Chicken in Herb and Mustard


Super Food for Super Dad with Sautéed Bok Choy and Mushrooms

Finally, if you’d like to prepare a meal as super as your dad then best to play around with a superfood like bok choy. Studies also show that people who eat more cruciferous vegetables like bok choy have a lower risk of developing lung, prostate, and colon cancer. This superfood is then paired with button mushrooms and sprinkled with sesame seeds. Learn the recipe here: Sauteed Bok Choy and Mushrooms


“We, at Ajinomoto, believe that cooking is an expression of love.  We hope that these thoughtful recipes help sons, daughters, and even beloved grandchildren to express their admiration for the special men in their lives- their dads and granddads,” said Co.


Providing special, delicious, healthy, and easy-to-follow recipes are just one of the many ways that Ajinomoto lives its “Eat Well, Live Well” commitment to help people live a fulfilled life with their family and loved ones through nutrition without compromise.


For more nutritious and delicious recipes, visit the Less Sodium Recipes section of Ajinomoto’s Cookmunity website at



Monday, June 13, 2022

No appointment needed at Maxicare’s two new Primary Care Clinics in VV Soliven and Skyrise Cebu


Maxicare Primary Care Clinics (PCCs) offer world-class consultations with various specialists, and an array of laboratory tests amid a relaxing healthcare experience.

Maxicare opens their new Primary Care Clinic (PCC) in VV Soliven, EDSA Greenhills. The PCCs provide quality healthcare near the Maxicare members’ homes or workplaces. In the photos are (left to right) Chief Operations Officer for Maxicare’s Primary Care Clinics Dr. Karen Almonte, Maxicare Chairman Roberto Macasaet, Jr., Maxicare Primary Care Clinics President Dr. Josephine Lopez, and Maxicare President & CEO Sean Argos

Maxicare, the largest Health Maintenance Organization in the Philippines, announced that appointments won’t be necessary for its two new Primary Care Clinics (PCCs) in VV Soliven Shopping Complex, EDSA Greenhills, San Juan City; and Skyrise Tower 4B, Guanzon St. Cebu IT Park, Cebu City. 

Maxicare Primary Care Clinics are established to give Maxicare members convenient access to superior healthcare and excellent customer experience. Usually, an HMO member needs to book an appointment and present a Letter of Appointment (LOA) to avail themselves of consultations or medical tests in accredited clinics and hospitals. 

For the Maxicare members’ convenience, they can skip these steps as PCCs provide a paperless queueing system and an electronic medical recording system. Members can simply walk in and complete their lab tests and doctor consultations within half an hour; with an average waiting time of only six minutes. To make waiting inside PCCs the most relaxing healthcare experience, guests are offered free beverages, wifi access, and charging stations for their devices. 

Maxicare President and CEO Sean Argos explained that Filipinos deserve convenient access to quality medical services. The Primary Care Clinics were established with this in mind. “We want to encourage Filipinos to make sure that they are in the best of health. We have learned that Filipinos tend to delay their hospital visits as these take up so much of their time. It is our mission, as a company, that whatever our patients and members need today and, in the future, is served in our Primary Care Clinics. We want this to be their safe space, we want to be here for them during their trying times, and we want to serve them faster so that they can spend time on things that matter most in their life.”

Maxicare PCCs are equipped with diagnostic and laboratory test equipment with consultation rooms for families, ENT room, extraction room for blood tests, vital signs station with BMI machine, radiology station with an x-ray machine, and heart station with ECG machine. Patients can also consult with primary care physicians, and specialists in Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, OB Gynecology, ENT, Dermatology, Ophthalmology, and Psychiatry. 

Maxicare Primary Care Clinics provide over 255 laboratory tests and procedures such as complete blood count, lipid profile (cholesterol tests), fasting blood sugar, and SGPT (liver test). They also have special laboratory tests like CA 125 (cancer antigen test) and ferritin (iron-stores test). The heart station includes ECG, 2D echo, treadmill stress test, and, soon, the Holter and Ambulatory monitoring. Anti-rabies vaccine and COVID-19 RT-PCR tests are also available.

“Maxicare is expanding our Primary Care Clinics to places closer to our members. Later this year, we are targeting to open three more PCCs before 2022 ends, with more to be opened next year,” Argos said. “We will continue finding ways to help our fellow Filipinos live their best lives.”

Maxicare opens their new Primary Care Clinic (PCC) in Skyrise Tower 4B in Cebu IT Park. In the photo is an ultrasound machine both for general and obstetrics, and a probe for 2D echo. 

Take a look at the newly opened Maxicare Primary Care Clinics in VV Soliven and Skyrise Cebu. 

Maxicare Prima Gold, Prima Silver, and E-Ready Advance prepaid cardholders have free and unlimited consultations at PCCs. At present, a total of 12 Primary Care Clinics are open nationwide: (Luzon) VV Soliven Greenhills EDSA, Eton Centris Quezon City, Northgate Filivest Alabang, SM City Clark, Ayala North Exchange Makati City, Bridgetowne Quezon City, W City Center BGC, and Double Dragon Meridian Park Pasay City; (Visayas) Skyrise Cebu IT Park, Cebu Business Park, and Megaworld Blvd. Iloilo; (Mindanao) Abreeza Mall Davao City. For more information about Maxicare’s PCCs, visit  


About Maxicare

As the largest HMO provider in the country, Maxicare continuously provides Filipinos comprehensive healthcare programs via its wide network of medical providers fortified by a strong customer support system. Currently, it services the largest number of HMO customers across the country from corporate segment, and small and medium-sized enterprises to families and individuals via its more than 24,000 affiliated doctors and specialists, 1,400 hospitals and clinics, 1,000 dental clinics, 180 rehabilitation, dialysis, and eye centers. For more information, visit

Saturday, June 11, 2022


The Manila Hotel's Red Jade Restaurant

The Manila Hotel’s stunning Red Jade restaurant, which specializes in authentic Chinese dishes, reopens on Friday, June 10, 2022. After a hiatus, Red Jade once again welcomes diners with not just crowd-pleasers and best-selling dishes, but an expanded menu selection. 

Diners can expect to explore a menu of traditional Chinese dishes prepared with a modern flair along with nods to other regional cuisines of China. The historic Manila Hotel’s local and foreign clientele who have either dined in its main hall or booked its function rooms for private gatherings know that Red Jade is famed for food prepared with time-honored cooking techniques, premium ingredients, and uncompromising quality.


Imperial Peking Duck

Honey-Roasted Pork Barbecue

Scallop and Duck Liver with Foie Gras Sauce 

Diners have long celebrated the famed Red Jade’s Imperial Peking Duck, which takes hours to prepare and is expertly carved for patrons. Dim sum lovers can enjoy a wide selection of items, among them the Steamed Shrimp Dumpling “Har Gao,” Crispy-Fried Shrimp Stuffed with Cheese, and Pan-Fried Radish Cake “Bi Feng Tang” style. Other menu highlights include the Scallop and Duck Liver with Foie Gras Sauce appetizer, Honey-Roasted Pork Barbecue, Roasted Suckling Pig, Crispy Pork Belly (Lechon Macau), Stuffed Chicken with Eight Treasures in Lotus Leaf, Fresh Garoupa served steamed or braised, as well as male mud crabs and green lobsters, and many others.  It’s even got its line-up of desserts like the Red Jade Signature Chilled Mango Pudding, Chocolate Sesame Ball, and Chilled Almond Beancurd with Lychee, to name a few.

Dim Sum All-You-Can

One of its most popular offerings, however, has been the “Dim Sum All-You-Can” special. Available beginning Monday, June 13 along with Red Jade’s comeback, guests can enjoy delightful dim sums that are meticulously hand-crafted by our chefs to bring out amazing flavors and textures. Guests can order them to their heart’s content for only P1,288 nett per head. Soon, Red Jade will also launch the “Dim Sum All-You-Can” discounted vouchers for a limited time this June. Be sure to catch the promo! The “Dim Sum All-You-Can” offer is available at lunchtime from Monday to Friday only. 

Red Jade is known to its loyal guests as one of the most beautifully decorated Chinese restaurants in the country. Guests who enter Red Jade feel like they have been transported to a different world, a place that evokes a sense of majesty. The restaurant is highlighted by the stunning décor of wall relief murals in jade. A luxurious ambiance permeates the space, drawn out by the dramatic lighting that creates a lovely contrast with the stylish wallpapers, detailed ceilings, and red tones all-around—an elegant tribute to Chinese traditions and flavors right in the heart of Manila. 

With its name and ambiance calling to mind luck and prosperity, Red Jade will surely be a venue for joyous celebrations among family, friends, colleagues, and associates over expertly prepared food, flawless service, and a refined atmosphere. Experience all of it again, starting this Friday, by booking a table now!

Red Jade, located on the ground floor of the historic Manila Hotel, is open daily from 11 am to 3 pm for lunch, and 6 pm to 10 pm for dinner. Reservations can be made by calling (632) 8527 0011, (632) 531 0011, or emailing