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Is lecithin good for lowering cholesterol?
Cod liver oil and your joints
Cod liver oil is a nutritional supplement sourced from the liver of codfish. It is a rich source of omega-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids EPA and DHA. Unlike other fish oils, it also contains vitamin A (essential for the immune system) and vitamin D (for healthy bones). Omega-3 fatty acids aren’t produced in the body so need to be sourced externally from food, the richest source being cold-water fish.
How could cod liver oil help your joints?
Cod liver oil is absorbed into the bloodstream, which means it works directly in the lining of the joints where it is converted into mucin and hyaluronic acid. This helps thicken joint fluid and prevent bone friction at the joints. Its anti-inflammatory properties could also help relieve the pain associated with arthritis.
A German trial involving 43 patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) who took 1g of cod liver oil daily (one capsule) for three months reported 52% of participants had a decrease in morning stiffness, 42% had less painful joints, 40% had less swelling, and 67% recorded experiencing less pain by the end of the pilot study (i).
Researchers at Cardiff University concluded cod liver oil could help repair arthritic joints and prevent damage to healthy joints by keeping them well lubricated. Using discarded cartilage from patients who had knee replacement surgery the researchers found that in the samples treated with cod liver oil (2,000mg dose) the enzymes responsible for joint destruction (cyclooxygenase-2) had been ‘turned off’ (ii).
There is no RDA of omega-3 fatty acids but a minimum amount of 500mg daily (1 capsule) is recommended as a preventative measure. If you have a joint condition or degenerative illness like RA you may want to try a higher strength dose (1,000mg) but check the vitamin A level is regulated, as too much can be toxic to the body. The RDA for vitamin A is 3,000 mg/µg.
Choose higher quality fish oils that are certified free from environmental toxins like mercury, organochlorines and PCBs (polychlorobiphenyls) and take it at a regular time of day, e.g. first thing or at bedtime.
Cod liver oil could reduce the risk of heart disease as it thins the blood so consult with your health professional if you are on blood-thinning medications, such as Wafarin. It can also raise blood sugar levels so diabetics should seek advice from their GP before taking a supplement.
Black Label Properties’ Berlin Price Map and Berlin Rental Map show rapid changes in the market
Despite the introduction of a rental cap (‘Mietpreisbremse’) in 2015, rental prices in Berlin continue to rise, according to a new residential market report by Berlin Hyp and consulting company CBRE. In 2016 apartments were being offered at 9 EUR per square meter and month, a 5.6% increase on the previous year – and there are other significant changes to the market, as shown on the new Berlin Price Map and Berlin Rental Map from leading international estate agent Black Label Properties.
Berlin Housing Market Report 2017
Berlin’s population is growing rapidly and its housing market is developing dynamically. The city has a diverse scene that ranges from major projects by public housing experts to private developers and co-operative projects, to exclusive apartments in the centre aimed at international clients. Refugee numbers have had some impact on the statistics, but there are also professionals and families relocating to the city for quality of life and to study – free education being a key factor. In 2015 Berlin gained 48,000 residents, and since 2005 has grown by 270,000 people. There is plenty of planned construction (32,240 apartments) but this does not cover the influx.
Here are the key findings of the Berlin Housing Market Report:
- Biggest growth in the outskirts of the inner city, i.e. districts with smaller apartments like Neukoelln (17% growth) and Marzahn-Hellersdorf (10% growth). Rapid growth in two Neukoelln postcode areas: Richardplatz and Silbersteinstrase where rents increased by 32% to 11.92 EUR within one year, and 24% to 11.17 EUR.
- Strong growth in Humboldthain (Mitte) with rental prices rising from 47% to EUR 10.60 per square meter and month. “Such enormous deviations are explained by several new projects, which were let for the first time in 2016,” says Michael Schlatterer, Team Leader Residential Valuation for CBRE in Berlin.
- Furnished apartments in inner city areas now account for 27.4% of the total rental offer. Landlords typically let these at an extra charge of 3-4 EUR per square meter, which helps them to get around the rent brake in certain circumstances. More than half of furnished apartments were rented in three inner city districts – Mitte, Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf and Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg with ads for these accounting for 40% of rental housing offers.
- Fewer empty apartments in the city – just 1.2%, slightly higher than Cologne and Stuttgart.
- Price reductions in some areas – the biggest fall was in Kreuzberger Prinzenstrase at 16.8% to 9.26 EUR per month and square meter; Buelowbogen in Schoeneberg also fell 11% to a rent of 7.73 EUR.
- Rents are currently highest in Hackescher Markt (Mitte) at 13.70 EUR and Unter den Linden at 13.38 EUR. Ahrensfelde (Marzahn-Hellersdorf) has the cheapest rents at 5.75 EUR.
- Home ownership continues to be more expensive – because of the rise in prices there is more international interest in residential property in Berlin. The price for owner-occupied apartments rose by 9.6% to 3,289 EUR per square meter. The highest prices are in Mitte, Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg and Wilmersdorf; the largest increases in Spandau and Lichtenberg (23%) and Tempelhof-Schoneberg (21%).
“One of the key highlights of this report is the sustained growth of Berlin’s residential sector. Over the past few years’ investors have been shifting capital in increasing amounts into Europe’s most undervalued capital city,” says Ian Sigmund, Investment Associate, IP Global Ltd. “Whilst investment in previous years has been concentrated solely around more central locations such as Mitte, Charlottenburg and Friedrichshain, we are now seeing potential in Berlin’s outer districts. Lichtenberg is a prime example of a location that has been a recipient of this investment. In 2015 it saw a meagre 3.4% capital appreciation yet a strong leap in rentals, 8.7% a key indicator for future growth. Lichtenberg’s top market segment appreciated an astonishing 29.7% over the year 2016, with much of this growth attributed to areas surrounding the Tierpark.
“Looking ahead, this report solidifies the Berlin investment case with the average residential capital growth over all districts at a healthy 9.6%. With uncertainty surrounding traditional safe haven markets such as the UK and the US, Berlin remains an attractive alternative for investors in search of strong, sustainable returns.”
Where to invest in Berlin
The Berlin Price Map and Berlin Rental Map show you how much it would cost to buy or rent near every train station in Berlin. It is easy to see that the actual market price is much higher in practice compared to the average rental price of 10.84 EUR per square meter in many areas of Berlin despite the rental brake. Despite the higher prices, new buildings are now a better investment. This is reflected in the quality of the building, the contemporary housing the legal security in lettings and the foreseeable trend that the demand for new buildings will grow steadily over the next few years.
“We advise buy-to-let investors to buy properties that are new build or completely refurbished to avoid the rental capping law because the new restrictions to not apply there,” says Black Label Properties’ director Achim Amann. “A 3% yield for buy-to-let investors in Berlin for the new builds is realistic, but not more. Please look for areas where the rents are still cheap if you wish to invest into a capital growth. In the areas where renting is still cheap we see the best options for capital growth. More and more people will move there and then the rents will pick up. e.g. Spandau, Lichtenberg (last year) and south Neukoelln.”
The Housing Market Report Berlin 2017 is published by Berlin Hyp and CBRE and available to read in full here.
About Black Label
Black Label Properties is a leading Berlin realtor, international real estate agent, property surveyor, finance expert and lettings and property management agent. Our team speaks fluent English, German, French and Chinese. From our offices in Berlin we offer a full service package to individuals and companies looking to relocate to Berlin and we are one of the few agents who offer in-house finance brokerage for international clients. With 300+ properties for sale between 54K and 8.9M, we offer the largest selection in Berlin. www.blacklabel-properties.com.
Black Label Properties works closely with IP Global to simplify property investment for international clients:
About IP Global
IP Global’s full-service approach is built on extensive market research and analysis combined with a significant financial commitment to every investment we offer. We are able to manage the entire investment process end-to-end, from sourcing, financing, and management to those all-important exit strategies, making investment in real estate as straightforward as investing in more traditional asset classes. Our expertise, experience and strong record have produced over USD2 billion in international real estate investments in over 30 markets worldwide. www.ipglobal-ltd.com