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Leave the clocks alone, switching times is bad for your health, says leading doctor



#TheBahamas, November 10, 2023 – A leading physician who specializes in wellness is urging the Bahamas government to stop switching between Eastern Standard Time and Daylight Savings Time, citing medical evidence that switching to Daylight Savings Time leads to a broad spectrum of health issues ranging from poorer sleep habits due to extended daylight hours to increased stress, a higher incidence of heart attacks and strokes.

Dr. Arlington Lightbourne, President and CEO of Bahamas Wellness Health Systems which operates four clinics in Nassau and Eleuthera, said The Bahamas is one of only a handful of countries in the region to continue what he called the “artificial clock, asking our brain to battle prolonged evening sunshine and wake up an hour earlier than its biological design for 7 months each year.

“Most other countries in the Caribbean region have either never used or have abandoned this unhealthy pivot between Standard Time and Daylight Savings Time,” he said. “The Bahamas, even to our detriment tends to mirror many of the lifestyle behaviors of America whether it is healthy for us or not. I am calling on health & wellness professionals and advocates throughout the Bahamas to stand with me and lobby against daylight savings time because of the very clear evidence of how it negatively affects human wellness. We need the courage to say to our leaders that our health is more important than the economic benefit of working longer hours in the daylight or not having to turn on lights so early.”

The health consequences, says Dr. Lightbourne, have been documented repeatedly which is why countries as dependent on tourism as Mexico have banned extended daylight.

“Late last year Mexico adopted standard time permanently, citing health benefits and improved productivity and energy savings,” he noted. “What happens when your body’s circadian rhythm is interrupted is not one of those things that we think about enough – unless, of course, you are in the medical field and you see the almost immediate impact it has on your patients.”

Part of the problem stems from the fact that the brain has a harder time releasing melatonin which induces sleepiness when the sun is still shining and light is pouring into what is supposed to be a bedroom. The longer you stay up with the sunlight, the less time melatonin has to kick in as your natural bedtime drowsiness sedative.

In his practice, Dr. Lightbourne said, he’s seen almost immediate cases of depression, overeating, restlessness leading to sleeplessness, fatigue, higher blood pressures and blood sugars.

“There is also a reported eight percent increase in strokes and heart attacks in America,” he said.

According to a Reuters report that has been widely reaffirmed nearly a decade after it first appeared, the loss of one hour of sleep from switching to Daylight Savings Time raised the risk of having a heart attack by 25 percent by the following Monday, two days after the clock ticked the extra hour of daylight.

By contrast, the report stated, “heart attack risk fell 21 percent later in the year, on the Tuesday after the clock was returned to standard time, and people got an extra hour’s sleep.”

Says Dr. Lightbourne, “Our brains and bodies have evolved over thousands of years in relationship with the sun, and to continue this unhealthy pivot adds to many health challenges humans already face.”

While debate on time change continues in the U.S. with two-thirds of the population saying they don’t look forward to the Spring forward, Fall back routine, the item does not appear to be on the Bahamian agenda, said Dr. Lightbourne who recently marked 15 years in practice and seven with Bahamas Wellness, which has owned and operated the Eleuthera Medical Center for the last five years, now the gold standard comprehensive and 24/7 urgent care facility for that island. The clinic recently added advanced digital mammography to its growing list of specialized services including 24/7 x-ray, ultrasound, and full lab facilities. With a staff complement of about 45 and rotating specialists serving Central Eleuthera, Spanish Wells and Lower Bogue, Bahamas Wellness growing list of services on Eleuthera now include specialists in emergency and trauma care, primary wellness care, gynecology, pregnancy care, pediatrics, nutrition, cardiology, colonoscopy, vision, dermatology, foot and ankle and its most recent addition, dentistry.


Photo Caption: Dr. Arlington Lightbourne, President and CEO, Bahamas Wellness Health Systems with four clinics in The Bahamas, urges The Bahamas to stay with Eastern Standard Time, citing medical evidence that switching to Daylight Savings Time with extended light in the evenings disrupts natural sleep patterns and results in a range of health issues from depression to increased stress and higher incidence of heart attacks.

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BMMC Groundbreaking is evidence that all Bahamians can thrive, says PM



FREEPORT, Grand Bahama – Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, the Hon. Philip Davis on Thursday, December 7 noted the company is a “beacon of national pride” and evidence that all Bahamians can thrive, when giving the keynote address at a ceremony for Bahamas Mineral and Manufacturing Corporation Ltd., at the company’s site on Queen’s Highway.

The Groundbreaking and Cornerstone Laying Ceremony were held at BMMC Ltd. grounds on Queen’s Highway where the headquarters for the new establishment will be.

He said two companies manufacturing pipes, one in Grand Bahama and one in Nassau, have gone out of business, and added that this one will not. Once the company can meet the demand, it will be too costly for businesses to import the product due to tariffs.

The government is committed to assisting young entrepreneurs like Mitchell Thurston by providing the necessary tools to ensure they are not alone on their journey to success.

“This approach is not just an investment in individuals, but an investment in the very fabric of our nation’s economy and future.”

With the company being 100 percent Bahamian owned, and “perfectly aligned with our governments Blueprint for Change,” he said, “by reducing reliance on PVC products and establishing a local production facility, BMMC is not only supporting Bahamian infrastructure, but also aligning with the nation’s environmental sustainability goals.”

The ceremony heralds a future where industry and economy are strengthened.

“Grand Bahama” said the Prime Minister, “must and will be the blueprint for growth and development.”

He added, “It is a stepping stone towards a brighter, more sustainable and prosperous future for The Bahamas and all Bahamians.”

Minister for Grand Bahama, the Hon. Ginger Moxey described the day as “grand” in being present for the groundbreaking and cornerstone laying for the state-of-the-art facility which will “revolutionize the construction and manufacturing industries” throughout the country, especially Grand Bahama.

“This new venture envisions opening doors to innovative learning for our students, innovative careers and jobs for Bahamians and spin-off opportunities for new and existing businesses.”

She added that innovation is “critical to the growth and sustainability of our island’s economy. This is why Grand Bahama has been deemed the Home of Innovation in our Blueprint for Change.”

BMMC’s president, Mitchell Thurston, said the project was two years and eight months in the making. Grand Bahama is the perfect location for their headquarters because of the affordability and availability of land; reliable infrastructure; and the proximity to the Container Port, the gateway to the global market.

To date, 13 jobs have been created and filled and through subcontracts throughout the various phases, it is anticipated that 80 jobs will be available during the construction phase. It is hoped they will be able to have a workforce of 33 skilled and unskilled labourers.

Additionally, BMMC will introduce a cadet programme in the Grand Bahama schools, and the top students will be offered jobs to join their team.
Also present were members of the Board of Directors, shareholders of the company led by President Mitchell Thurston, along with representatives from the Grand Bahama Port Authority, Grand Bahama Chamber of Commerce, family and friends all of whom gathered for the occasion.

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Potter’s Cay vendors to get help from Bahamas Gov’t after November fire



Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer

#TheBahamas, December 10, 2023 – Victims of the Potter’s Cay fire in November, will soon be assisted by the government of The Bahamas through a credit line organized with a reputable  Bahamian company.

This is being done through the Ministry of Agriculture and Marine Resources on a mission to rebuild the stalls lost in the fire on November 19th, 2023.

According to the ministry, they will assist with a sum of $64,823.62 which is $16,205.88 per stall, to aid business with quickly bounding back, especially given that the holiday season is near, expressed Jomo Campbell, Minister of Agriculture and Marine Resources.

Campbell spoke to the unfortunate incident saying,

“It was reported that a boat caught fire and drifted to the western side of the dock. As such, four stalls were completely destroyed. We thank God that there wasn’t any injury or loss of life. However, we know that the fire caused damage to the livelihoods of Bahamians and even our fishing industry, which plays a vital role to our food supply.”

Considering this and the ministry’s mission, the credit will be established with [Premiere Importers] Campbell said.

This investment also comes as Potter’s Cay dock, as Campbell pointed put, is a crucial aspect of Bahamian culture.

“It has a vital role to play in our economy,” he said.

For disasters such as this, the minister continues to highlight that the ministry is doing the work to implement preventative measures by fortifying safety protocols, carrying out regular inspections and providing training and resources to businesses in the fishing industry to better equip them to handle emergency situations.

Campbell, in responding to questions as he made the announcement in a video on the ministry’s Facebook, said that insurance for the stalls is an issue that will also be addressed going forward in the new year.

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Bahamas First Lady speaks up for Women and the Family at COP28



Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer


#TheBahamas, December 10, 2023 – Women face unique challenges regarding climate change impacts and The Bahamas Prime Minister’s wife highlighted this at Cop 28.  Joining her husband, Philip Davis who is widely communicating the dire need for climate action, Ann-Marie Davis, First Lady of the archipelago underlined why it’s important to also protect women against climate change effects.

In an interview with media, she spoke to how the climate crisis threatens the health of women globally, highlighting those carrying children.

First Lady Davis points out that it affects the unborn child through harmful gasses the pregnant women can breathe in, the water they drink, and their physical surroundings which may not be conducive to healthy pregnancies and births.

Davis also made sure to highlight that while women are affected differently, especially pregnant women, it’s important to protect everyone, such as men, boys, girls and children overall.

Children can be affected by disabilities and lack of proper development due to climate change impacts, she mentions.

In continuation, the first lady’s remarks compliment the fact that women are considered to be more vulnerable than men to climate change effects according to the United Nations, which says this is mainly due to them representing the majority of the world’s poor and are proportionally more reliant on threatened natural resources.

Regarding the even more vulnerable pregnant women, evidence shows that rising temperatures threaten successful reproduction. In fact, heat stress can cause stillbirths, preterm births and low fetal weight, according to Frontiers in Endocrinology, the third most cited and sixith largest research publisher and open science platform.

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