Wednesday, 18 April 2007
Sugar is OUT, Fat is IN?
I know. You're thinking, "Not another fad?".
Well basically that's what Dr. M. Rajen said at his (quite extraordinary) lecture yesterday morning at USM. Oh, I gate-crashed - got there late and left before he gave us the prescriptions. I was a little cheesed because the organisers switched venue at the last minute - they sent an email notification at 8.25 am for the 10 am lecture which I could not read because the network in my office just wasn't energised.
But back to the interesting stuff. As I was standing there in the hall (it was full capacity and overflowing), I went "hooray, now I can eat all the roast duck and Loh Ark (5-spice duck) I want". And all the other artery-hardening and artery-blocking meats and fats (you know, butter, coconut oil). "Are you serious?", you must be asking.
According to Rajen, he doesn't even bother to monitor his cholesterol level (and advises us we don't have to either). Don't waste your money on those tests. Really? According this alternative medicine practitioner, the things you really have to watch is your sugar level (and intake, of course) ... and rice. Yes, rice! Don't eat rice. It's all carbo, which your body eventually turn to sugar and then to fat. It's the fat that your body makes which you should worry about, not the fat you eat. Man (and woman) are not genetically structured to eat rice. Keep your eye on your sugar level. High sugar level leads to diabetes, kidney failure and ... yes, you got it ... premature death.
OK, I sound sceptical but he actually made a lot of sense. He's not a fanatic. He did say "just reduce your rice" as a compromise - instead of 5 bowls, just eat half a bowl. In fact, that's what I have been doing for the last few years. My favourite lunch haunt in campus is the Red House were I have a very simple lunch of a small portion of rice (the vendor used to laugh at me) and three types of vegetables - usually it includes bitter gourd. But I am worried too - I don't really know how they cook it (did they add sugar? MSG?). Another interesting thing he said - his breakfast is 2 eggs (plus a few things I can't recall) EVERYDAY. He even had Char Koay Teow with 3 eggs, easy on the koay teow. That's a relief. Now I can have my 2 half-boiled eggs at the hotel (why?) for breakfast without feeling guilty.
And did you know that if your arteries are very highly calsified (like 90%), i.e. stiff as a plastic hose, you have far less chance of getting a heart attack compared to someone who's arteries is less stiff?
Rajen is an Alumni of USM's School of Pharmacy and making it big in the world of traditional healing.
Posted by Lik Meng at 10:43