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January 2019

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.