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February 2019

自动体外除颤器有什么功能?(What is the function of an AED?)

A contributed article by Professor Tan Huey Cheem, Director, NUHCS, on out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) being a worldwide public health problem, the function and effectiveness of the automated external defibrillator (AED), when and how to use the AED and the locations of AED. 

Commentary: Public attitudes of HIV have not moved beyond narratives of fear, prejudice from early years of global epidemic

A commentary piece by Mr Rayner Tan, a Ph.D. candidate and researcher on HIV, NUS SSHSPH and Associate Professor Hsu Li Yang, Head, Programme Leader (Infectious Diseases), NUS SSHSPH, which addresses public reaction and dated views of HIV as a deadly infectious disease and low HIV voluntary testing rates.


Eating less white rice may not cut diabetes risk, studies show

An article on the research conducted by the Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health (SSHSPH), NUS and Duke-NUS Medical School on how the overall quality of diet is more important to decrease the risk of diabetes.


Professor Rob Martinus Van Dam, Vice –Dean (Academic Affairs) and Domain Leader of epidemiology, NUS SSHSPH, mentioned that there is not much of an increase in the risk of diabetes over a relatively wide range of rice intakes and that the study showed that a person who eats less rice is likely to eat more of something else to maintain the same calorie intake. A person may choose more noodle dishes, which are often cooked in sauces that are high in salt and oil, while others may eat more meat to feel full. These increase their risk of diabetes. Instead, if they substitute rice with whole grains, it decreases the risk of diabetes.


Another study used established diet quality indices to determine the overall "quality" of a person's dietary pattern and measured the link between diet quality and diabetes risk. The study found that whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts and a moderate amount of dairy were associated with lower risks of cancer, diabetes, heart disease and stroke. Sugar-sweetened drinks, processed meat and red meat - including beef, pork and even the darker portions of poultry like chicken thigh meat - were found to be associated with higher risks of the same diseases.



January 2019

每天限吃半片 (Limit to half a slice of bak kwa daily)

In the second part of this series, Ms Lynette Goh, Principal Dietitian, NUP, shares some tips on eating bak kwa in moderation and storing bak kwa appropriately to prevent it from going bad. She also advises that people with chronic medical conditions and those who are overweight should abstain from eating too much bak kwa. 


肉干正确吃法; 各种肉干营养不同 (Correct way of eating bak kwa; the different nutritional values of bak kwa)

In the first part of this series, Ms Lynette Goh, Principal Dietitian, NUP, shares about the nutritional content of bak kwa, explaining that it is high in fat, sugar and sodium. She highlights that different types of bak kwa have different nutritional values, and that one should always eat it in moderation.


Informed public is best weapon against diabetes

Prof Teo Yik Ying, Dean of the NUS Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health (SSHSPH) contributed an article on sugar intake and in relation to recent measures to reduce sugar intake in Singapore. Prof Teo opined that Singapore’s most powerful weapon in the bigger fight against diabetes and malnutrition from consumption of empty calories is an informed public that understands the benefits of a balanced diet and active lifestyle. 


Three experts’ views on four proposals

Prof Teo Yik Ying, Dean, NUS Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health; Dr Jeremy Lim, consultant at global consulting firm Oliver Wyman; and Straits Times senior health correspondent Salma Khalik give their views on the four measures that MOH has proposed to try to reduce the consumption of pre-packaged sugar sweetened beverages (SSB) here.


Seeking sweet spot in cutting sugar intake

Despite the MOH’s War on Diabetes campaign, sugar consumption in Singapore has gone up, prompting MOH to propose four measures to reduce sugar intake here. The Straits Times interviewed experts on the matter including Professor Rob van Dam, an epidemiologist at NUS Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health. He opined that a sugar tax should go hand in hand with front-of-pack labelling, public education on the health benefits of drinking lower-sugar, sweetened beverages and advertising restrictions.

NUH chief dietitian Dr Lim Su Lin is also quoted about the medical risks of consuming too much sugar, noting that it is an empty food that provides calories without added nutrients.


“早搏”危险吗?(Is ‘premature beat’ dangerous)

A contributed article by Prof Tan Huay Cheem, Director, NUHCS, shared that asymptomatic premature beats are common and usually not harmful. It mainly occurs in two forms – premature atrial contractions (PAC) and premature ventricular contractions (PVC), with the latter happening more frequently. While it is normal for PVC to occur during daily activities, PVC may lead to cardiomyopathy if it occurs often. Early diagnosis can be made using electrocardiograms or other medical technology. One does not need medication if there is no heart disease linked to the contractions.


Snuffing out an unhealthy habit in Singapore

An article looking at how the smoking measures has affected Singapore and what lies ahead for the future. Professor Teo Yik Ying, dean of NUS Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health, says that although Singapore has done well so far in driving the campaign against tobacco use, it can definitely do more and provided a few suggestions to augment current tobacco control measures.


Smokers get warnings as Orchard Road goes smoke-free

An article on Orchard Road becoming a smoke-free zone, with smokers given verbal warnings and redirected to the designated smoking areas.

Associate Professor Alex Cook, vice-dean of research, NUS SSHSPH, said that there are clear evidence linking smoking bans to improved cardiovascular health outcomes and fewer deaths from smoking-related illnesses. He also believes that the greatest health effects of a ban are also likely to result from the denormalisation of cigarette use.