Wednesday, 28 February 2018

The key to weight loss is diet quality, not quantity

Anyone who has ever been on a diet knows that the standard prescription for weight loss is to reduce the amount of calories you consume.

But a new study, published Tuesday (Feb 20) in JAMA, may turn that advice on its head. It found that people who cut back on added sugar, refined grains and highly processed foods while concentrating on eating plenty of vegetables and whole foods - without worrying about counting calories or limiting portion sizes - lost significant amounts of weight over the course of a year.

The research lends strong support to the notion that diet quality, not quantity, is what helps people lose and manage their weight most easily in the long run. It also suggests that health authorities should shift away from telling the public to obsess over calories and instead encourage Americans to avoid processed foods that are made with refined starches and added sugar, like bagels, white bread, refined flour and sugary snacks and beverages, said Dr Dariush Mozaffarian, a cardiologist and dean of the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University.

“This is the road map to reducing the obesity epidemic in the United States,” said Mozaffarian, who was not involved in the new study. “It’s time for US and other national policies to stop focusing on calories and calorie counting.”

Read more @

Older kids do not need growing-up milk

Image for illustration only
Infant milk formula, as its name implies, is meant for newborns - specifically those below one year of age and who are not fed breast milk.

After babies turn one, they can be given regular cow's milk - the same as what adults would drink - and should get most essential nutrients from solid foods.

Milk formula for older children is unnecessary and may even cause more harm than good.

These milk products generally have a higher sugar content from the addition of ingredients such as corn or glucose syrup solids and sucrose, said Dr Han Wee Meng, head of nutrition and dietetics at KK Women's and Children's Hospital.


Tears could diagnose Parkinson's

Image for illustration only

Shedding tears could help tell if you have Parkinson's disease, a new study found.

Scientists found there were minute differences in the levels of a particular protein shed in tears.

The test could help detect the disease years before symptoms develop allowing doctors to prescribe treatments such as drugs to restore dopamine in the brain.


NEA to release more Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes in Tampines, Yishun

The National Environment Agency (NEA) will release more Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes at three sites between April this year and January 2019.

They are Tampines Street 81, Tampines Avenue 4 and Nee Soon East.

This will mark the second phase of studying the use of Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes to suppress the Aedes aegypti mosquito population in Singapore, the agency said.

During the first phase of the study, NEA released thousands of Wolbachia-infected male mosquitoes over a period of six months in Tampines West, Nee Soon East and Braddell Heights.

Read more @

Ban on painkilling TCM herb to be lifted from Jun 1

Source: channelnewsais
A 23-year ban on Corydalis yanhusuo (延胡索, yán hú suǒ) is set to be lifted on Jun 1 this year, after which it can be imported and sold in Singapore.

Corydalis yanhusuo contains tetrahydropalmatine (THP), a natural substance that raised concerns in 1994 when overseas reports emerged that it could harm the liver when consumed.

As a precaution, the Ministry of Health (MOH) banned it from 1995.

While HSA’s review indicated that there are no major safety concerns when THP containing herbs are used appropriately, there is some evidence of an association between high levels of THP and liver toxicity in the scientific literature, HSA has recommended a daily intake limit of 19mg.

Read more @

Monday, 26 February 2018

Simple Stretching Exercises Effective in Diabetes Management - Peak Health Advocate

Simple Stretching Exercises Effective in Diabetes Management - Peak Health Advocate: New study finds that 40 minutes of assisted stretching can lower blood glucose levels and help with diabetes management.

Technology: Nokia relaunches iconic 8110 slider phone

8110 slider phone or banana phone is back, complete with Android OS with 4G and available in black or yes, YELLOW.

Source: Photo: HMD Global and channelnewsasia
Nokia was the leader in mobile phones before the smartphone era. By bringing back the old mobile phone designs and new designs, HMD Global has already sold more than 30 millions mobile phones, which says a lot about the Nokia brand.

Sunday, 25 February 2018

Singapore has one of the lowest mortality rates for newborns

Japan leads the list with one in 1,111 at risk of dying, followed by Iceland (a one in 1,000 chance of death), Singapore (one in 909), Finland (one in 833), Estonia and Slovenia (both one in 769), Cyprus (one in 714) and Belarus, Luxembourg, Norway and South Korea (all with risks of one in 667).

These countries are mostly well-off countries with strong education and health care systems, the report said.

Education matters. Babies born to mothers with no education face nearly twice the risk of early death as babies whose mothers have at least a secondary education.


Understanding ElderShield and its proposed changes

Read the full article @

Polyclinics chip in to tackle mental illnesses

Since 2012, Khoo Teck Puat Hospital (KTPH) and the Institute of Mental Health (IMH) have been training primary care doctors - such as general practitioners and polyclinic physicians - to pick up on signs of mental illness, in an effort to detect cases earlier and reduce the stigma surrounding the seeking of help for such problems.

Yesterday, the National Healthcare Group Polyclinics (NHGP) revealed that between October 2015 and last September, it dealt with 2,800 mental health cases - some of which involved patients who initially came in with other problems.

The scheme is a collaboration between NHGP, KTPH and the IMH and involves three polyclinics in Ang Mo Kio, Yishun and Woodlands.

Every month, each sees roughly 30 patients with mental health issues, especially anxiety and depression.


Forum: No need to be heartless in drive to go cashless

As a young person, I have always been exposed to technology. I am comfortable with cashless payments and the use of ATM cards for ez-link top-ups and so on.

However, some people clearly do not feel the same way (MRT moves a step closer in journey to go cashless; Feb 19).

For some of these people, and I think they tend to be those in the low-income group, they see the use of physical cash as the best way for them to carefully monitor and manage their money.

Some elderly people also prefer using cash as they have trouble remembering their ATM pin number.

If public transport is meant to be a public service, why are the most needy members of the public being sacrificed so that we can thump our chest about being cashless?

Technology should never be the objective.

Technology should be a tool to improve the quality of life for everyone.

And to that end, technology is not the only tool.

The Pioneer Generation Office for example, realised that most seniors are not comfortable with going online and so have deployed volunteers to go house-to-house - thus using a high human touch rather than a high-tech method to good effect (Expanded drive to find out what Singapore seniors need; Feb 19).

While I recognise there are costs to handle cash, surely there are also charges being levied by Nets and other cashless service providers.

Why the urgency to do away with cash top-ups by 2020?

The decision-makers at the Land Transport Authority and TransitLink are likely to be tech-savvy people who appreciate going cashless, but I hope their hearts are big enough to keep our public transport as an inclusive service for all.

Tan Yi Han


Exceptional people: Six Hong Kah North residents honoured for reviving man who had cardiac arrest

SCDF officers with (from left) Mr Raymond Chew Ho Kiat, Mr Wong Kuek Phong, Dr Amy Khor, Mr Denny Ng Kheng Yong, Mr Asnadi Robani and Mr Billy Lim Kuang Lee. Mr Tee Hee Lon was not present at the awards ceremony. Source: channelnewsais
Six residents were commended on Friday (Feb 23) for saving a man who suffered a cardiac arrest at Hong Kah North Community Club last November.

The incident happened at around 9.45pm on Nov 21, 2017. Mr Denny Ng Kheng Yong, 42, and Mr Raymond Chew Ho Kiat, 52, were having a chat at the club's general office when they were informed that a man had fainted on the fourth floor of the building after playing table tennis.

The pair was later joined by Mr Asnadi Robani, 50, Mr Billy Lim Kuang Lee, 32, and Mr Tee Hee Lon, 26.

Another man, 67-year-old Wong Kuek Phong, rushed to take an automated external defibrillator (AED) from the first floor when the victim showed no signs of recovery.

It took three shots of the AED before the victim was resuscitated.

Friday, 23 February 2018

Jordan 3D lab prints limbs for war wounded, disabled kids

Palestinian refugee Asil Abu Ayada shows off her new prosthetic hand from the lab which produces limbs for between $20 and $50, a fraction of the cost of conventional devices.

The 3D-printing prosthetics clinic at a hospital is run by the medical charity Doctors Without Borders is also helping Iraqi, Syrian and Yemeni amputees.


Singapore 6th-least corrupt country in the world: Annual index

Singapore has been ranked sixth in an annual ranking of countries that are considered least corrupt in 2017, moving up a notch from seventh position in 2016.

According to Transparency International's Corruptions Perceptions Index released on Wednesday (Feb 21), Singapore received a score of 84 among 180 countries.

The index measures perceived levels of public sector corruption globally, rating countries on a scale from zero, which is highly corrupt, to 100, which is very clean. The ranking is also based on 13 surveys covering expert assessments and views of business people.


Exceptional people: Singaporean wins Bafta award

Producer Low Ser En and British director Paloma Baeza (both above) with their awards for the film Poles Apart at Royal Albert Hall in London on Sunday. Source: ST
Singaporean producer Low Ser En has won a Bafta (British Academy Film Awards) award for Best British Short Animation for her stop-motion short Poles Apart.

The 12-minute film, about a polar bear and a grizzly bear who are brought together by their changing habitats, was the graduation project of a team of about 10 students from Britain's National Film and Television School, which included people "from four continents", including an American and a Briton, she said.


Food to eat for thicker hair

  • Mango
  • Soy beans
  • Eggs
  • Kelp
  • Figs
  • Flaxseeds
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Berries
  • Avocados
  • Leafy greens


You may want to read
1) Why are young sportsmen going bald?
2) Rubbing fingernails together stimulates hair growth and reverses graying

Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Singaporeans to get 'hongbao' SG Bonus of up to S$300 following 2017 Budget surplus


New Community Chest fund set up for smaller charities

Smaller charities will be able to tap into a new fund set up by the Community Chest from this year to 2021. Each charity will receive up to $50,000 a year for two years. The fund was announced on Feb 5.

Community Chest Charity Support Fund will go to 60 charities from 2018 to 2021.

The money is meant to run programmes that empower social service users and families, support their capital expenses to improve service quality and efficiency, and build their capability for community engagements to benefit service users, Community Chest said.


#MeNext - a new movement against gun control in USA

In the aftermath of the Florida school shooting Wednesday, which left 17 people dead, the #MeNext movement has sprung up, predicting further tragedy if lawmakers do not prioritize gun control.


You  may want to read
1) Students stage White House protest as Trump gives nod to background bill

Increasing trend of younger people seeking help for sex and porn addiction

Image for illustration only

Counselling centres said they are seeing an increasing trend of younger clients aged 25 and below, seeking help for sexual and porn addiction.

According to psychologists, one main risk factor that is causing more youths to grapple with sex addiction issues is the easy access and repeated exposure to Internet pornography.

Read more @

Friday, 16 February 2018

Thursday, 15 February 2018

Scam warning: Tan Tock Seng Hospital warns of cancer research fund donation scam - updated

Tan Tock Seng Hospital has issued a warning about a scam involving donations to a hospital cancer research fund.

In a Facebook post on Monday (Feb 12), the hospital said that a few members of the public were approached to donate to a Tan Tock Seng Hospital cancer research fund.

Read more @

'Parrot Man' spotted in Geylang Serai soliciting funds for Tan Tock Seng Hospital 'cancer research'


More than 900 GPs to be open over Chinese New Year holidays

More than 900 general practitioner (GP) clinics islandwide will be open during the Chinese New Year public holidays from Thursday to Sunday (Feb 15-18), the Ministry of Health said in a news release.

According to the health ministry's website, there will be 902 GP clinics open on Thursday, 85 on Friday, 128 on Saturday and 268 on Sunday.

In addition, 13 24-hour clinics will be open from Thursday to Sunday.

List of GP Clinics Open During Lunar New Year Holiday 2018

GCE A-Level results to be released on Feb 23

The results of the 2017 Singapore-Cambridge General Certificate of Education Advanced Level (GCE A-Level) examination will be released next Friday, Feb 23.

Students can collect their results from their respective schools from 2.30pm on that day, the Ministry of Education and Singapore Examinations and Assessment Board said in a joint media release on Wednesday.


Exceptional people: Changi Airport security officer who saved two lives gets Service Hero award

For saving two lives in six months, Ms Nguyen Thi Tuyet Trang from Certis Cisco Aviation Security received the Service Personality of the Year and Changi Service Hero awards.

The 26-year-old was one of 30 airport employees honoured at Changi Airport's Annual Airport Celebration.

This is the 25th year Changi Airport is honouring individuals who have gone beyond the call of duty to assist passengers, showed initiative and exhibited resourcefulness.

Read more @

Supplements to boost sex drive

  • Vitamin E increases testosterone levels
  • Polyphenols, found in dark pigment food like grapes and berries, increases sexual desire and vaginal lubrication
  • Vitamin B and Zinc increase testosterone levels and sexual desire
  • Omega 3 improves mood and triggers arousal
  • Ginkgo aids blood circulation for erectile function


Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Walkable cities reduce blood pressure and hypertension risk

A study of the link between city walkability and blood pressure, the largest ever conducted, has been held up as evidence of the "intangible value of urban design" in improving long-term health outcomes, said researchers.

The study of about 430,000 people aged between 38 and 73 and living in 22 British cities found significant links between a neighbourhood's increased walkability, lower blood pressure and reduced hypertension risk among its residents.

The outcomes were consistent even after adjustments for socio-demographic, lifestyle and physical environment variables, though the protective effects were particularly pronounced among participants aged between 50 and 60, women, and those residing in higher density and deprived neighbourhoods.


Technology: Cars with keyless entry system are easy theft targets

Owners of cars using the keyless entry system are at risk of having their vehicles stolen in minutes by a frequency-hacking device that is easily available for about RM150 (S$50) and can be obtained online or at some electronics stores, can unlock a car and start its engine by hacking its radio frequency identification (RFID) information.

A source said the device can open almost every car that has a keyless entry system.

Munich-based Allgemeiner Deutscher Automobil-Club (Adac), the largest auto club in Europe, recently said 110 models from 27 different manufacturers were at risk of being stolen based on the keyless system they used.

Car owners should take extra precautions like installing GPS tracking devices or use steering or gear locks to deter thieves," said a Malaysian police spokesman, adding that nothing beats a good physical lock, which made it much harder for thieves.


Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Mediterranean diet 'raises IVF success rate by 70%'

A Mediterranean diet can greatly increase a woman’s chances of having a baby through IVF, scientists say.

Adopting the healthy diet – which is loaded with fruit and veg, whole grains, olive oil and fish – boosted the chances of successful fertility treatment by almost 70% for some women.

Researchers from Harokopio University of Athens believe antioxidants in fruit and vegetables improves the quality of a woman’s eggs and also protects the womb, as when its lining is damaged it can be harder to become pregnant.

The diet contains only a small amount of red meat, which has been found to cut the chances of pregnancy, while it is rich in whole grains, which can boost the quality of an embryo. Dr Nikos Yiannakouris, co-author of the study, said: ‘Women attempting fertility treatment should be encouraged to eat a healthy diet, such as the Mediterranean diet, because this may help increase the chances of successful pregnancy.


How To Buy Chinese New Year Delicacies for CNY


Vitamin D can repair and prevent the damage caused by diabetes and high blood pressure

Vitamin D from the sun

Vitamin D is an 'inexpensive solution' to drugs as scientists discover the sunshine supplement repairs and prevents damage to the heart caused by diabetes and high blood pressure.

The sunshine supplement stimulates the production of nitric acid, which is involved in regulating blood flow and preventing the formation of blood clots, according to the first study of its kind.

It also reduces 'internal stress' in the cardiovascular system, which could avoid heart-related incidents, the research adds.

Study author Dr Tadeusz Malinski from Ohio University, said: 'There are not many, if any, known systems which can be used to restore cardiovascular cells which are already damaged, and vitamin D can do it.


Tips For Getting Rid of Bad Breath Once and For All

  • Do not use alcohol-based mouthwash
  • Eat more of parsley and spearmint
  • Brush and floss twice daily
  • Clean your tongue
  • Quit smoking and stop using tobacco products
  • Drink less coffee
  • Visit your dentist regularly
  • Get your acid reflex in check


S$99 million lost to scams in 2017: Police

It is not just Internet love scams that are on the rise, but various forms of fraud as well, with at least S$99 million lost to scammers last year, said the Singapore Police Force.

Email impersonation scams raked in the highest amount, with victims losing at least S$43 million - the most in the last three years and a 70 per cent spike from 2016. The largest amount swindled in a single case last year was S$5.7 million.

There were 328 cases of email impersonation in 2017, an almost 30 per cent jump from 257 cases in 2016.

Most of the victims were businesses who were deceived into transferring money to fraud bank accounts of their business partners.

Read more @

Monday, 12 February 2018

Singapore prepares for Chinese New Year 2018

SAF sends S$135,000 of humanitarian aid to Taiwan

sourc: channelnewsasia

The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) provided humanitarian aid to Taiwan to provide relief to victims of the earthquake in Hualien.

The relief package, worth S$135,000, comprised tents, blankets, medical supplies, food items and dynamo lights donated by the SAF.


Forum: Go back to parenting style of old

I read, with great disappointment and astonishment, at how some parents have been caught and fined for using false addresses to register their children in prestigious schools (Lying to get their child into a top school, Feb 4; When lying parents fail their children, Feb 7).

Parents are role models to their children and it is their duty to impart and teach the right values. If parents think nothing of lying, deceiving and using dishonest means to achieve their ends, it is frightening to think about what future generations will be like.

Parenting styles today are sadly lacking in imparting the much-needed and important core values of respect, honesty, humility, integrity and kindness.

With both parents working today, many have either no time to teach their children these important values or they tend to pamper the children, giving them whatever they want.

Such children will grow up without knowing these core values, which will affect the kind of people they will become, their future and their lives.

It is a common sight these days to see children behaving in ways that show no respect and consideration for other people, society or the environment.

Parents must go back to the parenting styles of decades ago, when teaching these important core values was a priority.

This and being good role models themselves are vital to ensure that future generations are nurtured in the right way.

Tan Lin Neo Susan (Miss)


Are you ready to adopt a dog or other pet?

Dogs, as the saying goes, are man’s best friend. But come this Chinese New Year, they will also be seen as the year’s official symbol for luck, good fortune and prosperity.

“In the Year of the Dog, people are very motivated to go get a dog. It's a passing fad. Pet shops and all will be marketing that and hyping it up to the maximum extent,” said Ricky Yeo from Action for Singapore Dogs. “But you have to understand that having a dog – it is not a piece of commodity or a piece of furniture. It is a lifelong commitment and responsibility. People have to think about that carefully.”

What to consider before you get a pet

The decision to keep a pet should never be taken lightly. Once you are a pet owner, you have to be committed to the pet for its entire life. At no time should abandoning your pet be an option.

What does it take to be a responsible pet owner? Here are 8 tips to remember:
  • Feed your pets regular nutritious and balanced meals.
  • Provide your pet with suitable housing and groom it well.
  • Provide appropriate training for your pet.
  • Bring your pet to a vet when it falls sick.
  • Spend time with your pet.
  • Be considerate to others (pick up your pet's poop and don't let them stray).
  • Sterilise your pet to prevent unwanted litters.
  • Microchip your pet for easy traceability if it is lost.

Remember that looking after a pet is just like looking after a baby. You need to be responsible to look after your pet with love, time and money. Yes money. Just like having a baby, you need to spend money on food and medicine on your pet. If you think you cannot fulfill these conditions, I would advise you not to have a pet yet.


Videos: Singapore AirShow 2018

If you have missed the Singapore AirShow 2018, here are some videos from youtube:

1) Republic of Singapore Air Force’s Special 50th Anniversary F-15SG Livery Unveiled – AINtv Express

2) Singapore Airshow 2018 Static Display Tour

3) Singapore Airshow 2018 Day 1: RSAF and international flight display

4)Singapore Airshow 2018 Black Eagles

Saturday, 10 February 2018

Zika antibody developed by Singapore company ready for human trials

A first-in-class monoclonal antibody for Zika, called Tyzivumab, is ready for human trials after only nine months of development, announced Tychan, a Singapore clinical-stage biotechnology company.

Tyzivumab targets the surface-exposed envelope (E) protein of the virus to stop it from fusing with host cells and prevent viral replication. It has been proven safe and effective in animals, according to Tychan in a media release.

The first patient dose will take place on Thursday, after getting the green light from Singapore's Health Sciences Authority. A total of 24 healthy volunteers will take part in Phase 1a of the clinical trial, said Tychan, adding that two more phases are likely to follow before the antibody is ready for patients’ use.


Number of dengue cases falls to 16-year low

The number of dengue cases in 2017 was 2,772, the lowest in the last 16 years, the National Environment Agency (NEA) announced.

In a media release, NEA said this “relatively low number” is likely to have been facilitated by the immunity of the local population following the high number of dengue cases in the last few years and Zika outbreak in the second half of 2016.

NEA also identified the removal of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes by NEA’s network of Gravitraps deployed across the island as another contributing factor to the lower number of dengue cases.


Scam warning: SkillsFuture Singapore credit will NOT expire

Has someone knocked on your door asking you to sign up for SkillsFuture courses because your credits will expire?

That information is false and it goes against guidelines issued to training providers, said SkillsFuture Singapore (SSG) in a notice on Thursday (Feb 8).

All Singaporeans aged 25 and above receive a S$500 credit from the Government to attend courses by approved training providers, as part of a national movement to encourage lifelong learning. SSG made clear that the credits will not expire.

Read more @