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27 Sep 2022

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7 Sep 2022

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  • Factors affecting production of collagen

    Age, stress, unbalanced diet, environmental toxins and sun exposure are factors which causes our skin to lose its elasticity, radiance and smoothness. At age 25, the generation of collagen starts to drop. At age 60, the level of collagen is reduced to less than half, resulting in our skin becoming thinner and less firm.

  • Benefits of collagen

    Cosmetic benefits

    The biggest concern for skin is when skin loses its appeal with sagginess. This is a sign of a shortage of collagen in the skin’s dermal layer. Collagen accounts for 70% of the dermis and helps skin to stay supple and taut. With the lack of collagen, the epidermis and the keratin layer will crumble and droop. This results in saggy skin or wrinkles.

    Nutraceutical benefits

    Collagen has been clinically proven to help maintain healthy human body joint functions, supporting athletic activities and everyday movement. Often, athletes and bodybuilders place a great deal of strain on ligaments and joints, leading to injury. And as people age, the connective tissues wear out and are prone to damage. Fortunately, collagen supplements can help with re-synthesising and preserving collagen and counteract some of the wear and tear of the joints.

  • What is collagen?

    Collagen is the main protein of connective tissues, bones, tendons and skin that makes up about 40% of your the total body mass. It is also the main component of skin, cartilage, ligaments and tendons, and the main protein component of bone and teeth due to its tough and inextensible (with great tensile strength) properties. Along with soft keratin, it is responsible for skin strength and elasticity, and its degradation leads to wrinkles that accompany aging.

  • What is Collagen?

    Collagen is the main protein of connective tissues, bones, tendons and skin that makes up about 40% of your the total body mass. It is also the main component of skin, cartilage, ligaments and tendons, and the main protein component of bone and teeth due to its tough and inextensible (with great tensile strength) properties.

    Along with soft keratin, it is responsible for skin strength and elasticity, and its degradation leads to wrinkles that accompany aging.

    Cosmetics Benefits

    The biggest concern for skin is when skin loses its appeal with sagginess. This is a sign of a shortage of collagen in the skin’s dermal layer. Collagen accounts for 70% of the dermis and helps skin to stay supple and taut. With the lack of collagen, the epidermis and the keratin layer will crumble and droop. This results in saggy skin or wrinkles.

    Source: Alkemi

    Nutraceutical Benefits

    Collagen has been clinically proven to help maintain healthy human body joint functions, supporting athletic activities and everyday movement. Often, athletes and bodybuilders place a great deal of strain on ligaments and joints, leading to injury. And as people age, the connective tissues wear out and are prone to damage. Fortunately, collagen supplements can help with re-synthesising and preserving collagen and counteract some of the wear and tear of the joints.

    • One international mulitcentre (US, UK and Germany) placebo-controlled human trial with 373 volunteers was recently finished by the well recognized Arthritis expert Roland W. Moskowitz (Role of collagen hydrolysate in bone and joint disease, Semin Arthritis Rheum 2000 Oct;30(2);87-99)

    Source: Alkemi Technologies Co. Ltd

    Factors Affecting Production of Collagen

    Age, stress, unbalanced diet, environmental toxins and sun exposure are factors which causes our skin to lose its elasticity, radiance and smoothness. At age 25, the generation of collagen starts to drop. At age 60, the level of collagen is reduced to less than half, resulting in our skin becoming thinner and less firm.

  • What is colorectal cancer and how can it be stopped?

    Colorectal cancer is a cancer nobody has to have, because it is one of the most preventable cancers that exist. Often referred to simply as colon cancer or bowel cancer, it almost starts as non-cancerous growths called polyps that develop on the lining of the colon and rectum.

    Polyps can become cancerous, but if they are found early enough through screening tests and promptly removed, the cancer can easily be stopped before it ever gets started. In fact, scientific research has shown that up to 90% of colorectal cancers can be prevented just by finding and removing polyps before they become cancer.

    How common is colorectal cancer?

    Recent research has demonstrated that adequate soluble fibre (fruits and vegetables) in your diet may play an important role in preventing colon cancer. Fibre helps move wastes through the lower digestive system and may even protect cells in the colon lining from developing into polyps. It is recommended that you consume at least 25 to 35 grams of dietary fibre each day, yet the average person only consumes 10 to 15 grams. Adding soluble fibre supplement is an easy and practical way to compensate for failing to eat five half-cup servings of fruits and vegetables every day.

    Colorectal cancer is a silent killer, very often with no symptoms to indicate anything is wrong until quite late. However, when symptoms do occur, they may include:

    • Bleeding from the rectum

    • Blood in or on the stools

    • Change in bowel pattern

    • Stools narrower than usual

    • Diarrhoea, constipation or a combination of both

    • Bloating, fullness or general stomach discomfort

    • Frequent gas pains

    • Constant tiredness

    • Weight loss for no apparent reason

    • Vomiting

    Screening for colorectal cancer

    There are several ways of screening, they include:

    • Faecal occult blood testing

    • Barium enema

    • Colonoscopy

    What else can i do to prevent colorectal cancer?

    Besides regular screening tests, a healthy diet and lifestyle are very important in colon cancer prevention. Here are things you can do to minimize your risk of colon cancer.

    1. Consume adequate dietary fibre

      • Recent research has demonstrated that adequate soluble fibre (fruits and vegetables) in your diet may play an important role in preventing colon cancer. Fibre helps move wastes through the lower digestive system and may even protect cells in the colon lining from developing into polyps. It is recommended that you consume at least 25 to 35 grams of dietary fibre each day, yet the average person only consumes 10 to 15 grams. Adding soluble fibre supplement is an easy and practical way to compensate for failing to eat five half-cup servings of fruits and vegetables every day.

    2. Limit your consumption of fat

      • Another way to lower colon cancer risk is to reduce the amount of fat in your diet, especially fat from animal sources. You can enhance a diet low in fat by adding increased amounts of fruits and vegetables, especially leafy green vegetables.

    3. Get plenty of exercise

      • The importance of exercising regularly cannot be overstated in maintaining a healthy lifestyle and preventing colon cancer. Accepted guidelines include at least 20 to 30 minutes of brisk physical activity three to five days a week or more. This can be walking, swimming or cycling and need not be jogging or aerobic training.

    4. Do not use tobacco

      • You probably already know about many of the increased health risks of tobacco use. It has also been linked to increase risk for colon cancer. Take steps now to quit smoking. Enrol yourself in a STOP SMOKING program today, or do whatever it takes to quit.


  • Great tips that will help you avoid hidden sugars and be healthier

    Many Singaporeans eat far too much sugar without even realising it, putting their health and wellbeing at great risk. Having a carbonated soft drink, nibbling Lemon Puff biscuits and having a bowl of Mee Siam for lunch – along with a one or two seemingly innocent snacks and drinks – can easily push you over your sugar allowance for the day. The fact is that today’s quick-bite diet of convenience leads to various health problems, affecting everything from your complexion to your internal organs to your waistline.

    Read on to find out why you should be keeping that sweet tooth in check, and how you can do it.

    The dangers of diabetes

    Over 400,000 people in Singapore were diagnosed with type II diabetes in 2015, and if unchecked this number could rise to one million by the year 2050. A serious chronic disease, it’s expensive to treat (and painful if you require insulin injections) and can lead to complications like heart attacks, strokes and kidney failure. Sometimes it even results in amputations, with over 1,500 Singaporeans losing limbs to diabetes every year.

    Getting real about sugar

    According to the Health Promotion Board and the World Health Organization, your sugar consumption (excluding naturally-occurring sugars found in veggies, fruit and milk) shouldn’t exceed 10 per cent of your daily caloric intake. Added sugar intake should be no higher than 40 to 55 grams a day, depending on your energy requirements, which vary according to factors including daily physical activity, age and gender. (Added sugar refers to sugar that is added to food or drinks: during the manufacturing process; while food is being prepared; or at the table.)

    Sugary foods are high in calories, significantly increasing your chances of developing type II diabetes, as well as causing you to pile on the pounds. Cutting down on your daily sugar consumption makes maintaining a healthy weight easier and has other benefits, too – including cavity-free teeth, fewer energy crashes and better skin.

    Cutting back doesn’t mean missing out

    But cutting out sugar is easier said than done for many of us, so just start small. Instead of drinking soda every time you’re thirsty, drink a glass of water or fruit juices for a change. Replace candy bars and sweets with fruit when you’re craving a snack. And every now and then ask for wholegrain rice and bread. When you crave for a dessert, pick the healthier but yet tasty alternative like non-fat yoghurt. For a healthy treat, consider VITAGEN Less Sugar. Containing 50 per cent less sugar than regular cultured milk drinks on the market, VITAGEN Less Sugar is loaded with billions of probiotics and prebiotics– the essential and healthy bacteria that promote good digestion and fight harmful microorganisms.


  • What you can do to keep diabetes at bay

    Cupcakes, salted caramel tarts, late night teh tarik and milo dinosaur… Don’t these tasty treats make you drool?

    However, these foods contain high amounts of sugar, and when sugar is consumed in excess beyond the recommended intake, our health will suffer.

    Consuming excessive amounts of sugar causes cavities, weight gain, and increases the risk of diabetes. According to the International Diabetes Federation (IDF), 541,600 people in Singapore were diagnosed with diabetes in 2015, and this number could rise to 1 million by 2050, based on an estimate by the Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health.

    The growing problem of diabetes in Singapore has prompted Health Minister Gan Kim Yong to “declare a war on diabetes,” and he aims to help those who are already diabetic to “control their condition to prevent deterioration”.

    Diabetes leads to, or accompanies, other life-threatening ailments. In 2014, half of all 440,000 heart attack patients were previously diagnosed with diabetes. Two in three patients newly diagnosed with kidney failure developed the condition due to the disease, and two in five stroke patients had diabetes.

    Prevention is better than cure. While we all love to indulge in some sugary perk-me-up or late night snacks, it’s best to do it in moderation.

    Be a “sugar detective”

    Over 400,000 people in Singapore were diagnosed with type II diabetes in 2015, and if unchecked this number could rise to one million by the year 2050. A serious chronic disease, it’s expensive to treat (and painful if you require insulin injections) and can lead to complications like heart attacks, strokes and kidney failure. Sometimes it even results in amputations, with over 1,500 Singaporeans losing limbs to diabetes every year.

    Getting real about sugar

    Most of us are generally careful with the amount of sugar we would scoop into our coffee or tea, but the bulk of our sugar intake actually comes from processed foods. Even healthy sounding food can contain high amounts of hidden, refined sugars.

    For instance, dried or processed canned fruit contain significantly higher amounts of sugar than fresh fruits. Where possible, choose a fresh fruit platter instead as it contains natural sugars that are good for you.

    Get in the habit of reading food labels, as that is the best way to discover hidden sugars in foods. Granted, we may not have the patience or time to decipher the chunk of text at the back of every food product, but doing so will help you sieve out what is truly healthy for you.

    According to the Health Promotion Board, added sugar intake should not exceed more than 40-55 grams a day (depending on individual energy requirements), which is the equivalent of 8-11 teaspoons. Keep this guideline in mind when checking food labels.

    A point to take note is that labels commonly show sugar content per 100 grams, but the serving portion may be 200-300 grams. Remember to do some math to find out how much sugar you are actually eating in a portion.

    Always choose options with less sugar

    Even as we are careful to keep the sugar content low in our main meals, we unconsciously take in high amounts of sugar from our snacks and beverages. In order to keep our sugar intake low, we should always choose options with reduced sugar.

    A great way to control your sugar intake is to prepare your own snacks. Instead of eating entire bars, melt dark chocolate to coat bananas and strawberries for a great sweet-tasting snack that replaces added sugar with natural sugar.

    Our favourite canned beverages can also contain high amounts of sugar. Refrain from taking carbonated or isotonic drinks as they contain unhealthy amounts of sugar. Instead, try freshly squeezed fruit juices. They are high in fibre and tasty as well.

    You may also consider drinking cultured milk as a healthy yet yummy beverage. For example, VITAGEN Less Sugar contains 50 per cent lesser sugar than other regular cultured drinks in the market, and on top that that, contains prebiotics and probiotics to keep your gut healthy.

    A pro tip: When buying your groceries, make a concerted effort to stock up on healthy snacks and beverages like baby carrots, fruit, yoghurt, and cultured milk, and choose to stay away from processed foods. Keep foods that contain high amounts of sugar out of sight, out of mind and your craving for them will diminish.

    Resist cravings smartly

    When making the switch to diet that has less sugar, it is natural that the body take some time to adjust.

    Not satisfying those cravings, if they are especially intense, can in turn lead your body to protest and result in a binge-fest. The best thing to do might simply be to give in – in moderation. If you are craving for a bar of chocolate, allow yourself to have just a small quarter of a bar. Instead of completely depriving your body, you are training yourself to adapt to a diet with less sugar.

    The conscious act of choosing less sugar options may require some extra determination in the beginning, but once you develop healthier habits, a less-sugar diet will keep diabetes at bay and benefit your body in the long run.