Friday, October 04, 2019

Our Collective Future

I’m a human being who happens to hold a Malaysian passport by operation (accident) of birth. I had no say in where I was born, or to whom.

Let’s forget all this Malaysians vs Pendatang nonsense, us vs them mentality.

This is our only home. There is no Planet  B. We are in this together. When we talk of the future, let’s not talk of the future of the Malays, of Malaysia or even of Asia. 

We need to starting thinking more wholistically, of our collective future. The future of all humans, together with all other species in the animal, plant, fungi, bacteria and virus kingdoms.

Humans cannot exist on its own as a single species, so forget about the Prometheus dream of colonizing Mars or any other exo-planet. Not only are we dependent on and have biotic associations with plant species for food, on gut biodata for digestion and the production of neurotransmitters and hormones, but our chronobiology has uniquely evolved to survive on a 24-hour circadian cycle, and, physically, our bodies and skeletal system on Earth’s gravity.

Originally posted here: 

Copyright 2003-2019 Azlan Adnan. This blog post is sponsored by The Green Party of Malaysia

Saturday, August 31, 2019


Commenting on:

So why are we not enforcing the law and not putting people who make incendiary speeches in jail so that they can STFU?

People like Zakar Turun? Why are we sucking up to people like lhim and giving him all sorts of privileges like permanent residency and asylum when he is a wanted man in India for terrorism-related activities, including money laundering?

Why cakap bukan seperti bikin? WHY? WHY? WHY?

You don’t need to know your Clausewitz or Sun Tzu to know that divide and rule has long been a strategy to subjugate the masses.

In the midst of all this ketuanan Melayu supermacist jingoism, the Malays are like kacang lupakan kulit - they forget that they are basically culturally and linguistically Hindu with a thin veneer of 500 years of Islam. 75% of Malay vocabulary has Sanskrit or Tamil etymology, not just words like madu, melati, suka, and duka but 75%. Take out the Portuguese, Dutch, English and Arabic loan words and you are left with Sanskirt and Tamil. The Layu people forget they were once subjects of the Hindu Sri Vijaya and Majapahit empires.

Even the word Melayu was invented by Sir Stamford Raffles as a collective umbrella term for the various ethnicities found in the Nusantara (Indonesian and Malay archipelago).

Ask any Malay what “Duli Yang Maha Mulia Sri Paduka Baginda Yang Di Pertuan Agung” means and the best he’ll come up is a single word answer - “king.”

Ask any Tamil-, Punjabi- or Urdu-speaking person and they’ll tell in detail the tale in the Ramayana how an emperor to please his second wife made his second born son his succesor but the new emperor refused to sit on the throne while his eldest brother was in exile for ten years and had placed his brother’s sandals on the throne until he came back to reclaim what was his rightful inhertance. 

Its not funny that most meLayus will have no idea what I am talking about in the previous paragraph.

Such ignorant and clueless people talking about supremacy - what supermacy? Certainly not intellectual supremacy. They are best characterised by mediocrity and a spoon-fed mentality relying on handouts by a manipulative government who wants nothing but their votes, in order to gain and remain in power.

The government does not appear to be serious in making this nation a better place. Just mucking about here and there with ad hoc non consequential minutiae when what we need is a coherent, rigorous and integrated stategic plan for a sustainable collective future. A future where public health as a social safety net is a given. Where healthcare infrastructure has kept up with population growth. Instead of complaining about over-crowded hospitals, they should build more hospitals. Instead of making headlines of remeh temeh issues they should limit population growth by encouraging recreational instead of procreational sex. There is an unsaid agenda to allow the Layu people to breed like rabbits to increase the voter base relative to other ethnicities.

If I had my way, I could do so much to screw their heads on right. Rafidah Aziz was correct to ask “Until when will they need crutches?” but she provided no answer.

The answer is until they get their heads screwed on right. If Mahathir or Anwar are unable or incapable of doing it, I will, as I have always done.

Just say it as it is, the truth is eternal.

Enough bullshit, we want to see results. Deliver or get kicked out at GE15. That’s not an idle threat...

Copyright 2003-2019 Azlan Adnan. This blog post is sponsored by The Green Party of Malaysia

Tuesday, August 27, 2019


Commenting on:

The Problem
This is an excellent analysis of the situation the profession currently faces. While not totally preventable, it was definitely foreseeable.

Option 4 is not an option. Dental surgeons chose to undergo a long and rigorous course of study and training to practise dental surgery; not to become product salesmen, or whatever. Same goes for option 3. No doubt there is a pressing need for professionally-or vocationally-trained dental technologists, one needs to undergo a dental technology course such such the degree offered by the Manchester Metropolitan University, not a dental surgery degree. Some estimate there is a need for 7 dental technologists for every dental surgeon.

Background and Context
Initially, the 3-year compulsory government service was a form of national service for nation-building, an attempt at capacity building. In the years after merdeka, not onlly dental surgeons, but also other professionals such as medical doctors, pharmacists, architects and engineers were required to undergo compulsory government service.

Public Policy & Healthcare as Social Safety Net
As the years went by, the situation of the country has changed. While the national population has grown, healthcare infrastructure has not kept up with increass demand due to population growth. Earlier this month, I commented on an article that complained that our hospitals are in critical condition because there are too many patients. I would argue the issue is not too many patients but the pace of healthcare infrastructure development did not commensurate with population growth. Free public healthcare is a social safery net we must upkeep. Instead of investing in military hardware and iconic mega towers, we must address real needs, not in ego building to glorify one’s self or family.

Even to enter the compulsory government service program, there was at one stage a waiting list of three years, now I believe it is down to seven months, thanks to pressure brought on the government by members of the MDA and MDC, to name just two.

The Reality
Starting a new dental clinic and surgery on your own for a new dental surgeon is not easy. Quite apart from the issue of funding, it must be borne in mind that a private practice is a business operation. Dental surgeons are trained as clinicians, not in the skills of running and marketing a on-going business, let alone initiating a start-up (quite different business management and marketing skills need to be applied).

An Initiative
In this regard, I must commend the initiative of IDAM, the Islamic Dental Association of Malaysia, in successfully organising annual Dental Entrepreneurship conferences for the past three or four years. We must build on this, definitely. I have suggested to your president the production of a series handbooks or manuals and we will proceed to discussions as soon as I am discharged (I’m admitted until Sept 8 ). I am bored stiff, so I welcome visitors if you wish to come here to discuss.

As to the issue of limited skills practised at a Klinik Pergigian, I was made to understand that dental surgeons were given the opportunity to undergo rotations or internships with various specialists at the district and general hospital level. Perhaps this need to be better organised. There needs to be structure and transparency, perhaps Pegawai Pergigian need to take the initiative and request for it. 

I cannot over-emphasise that the onus is on the dental surgeon himself or herself to learn. On average is takes a minimum of 8 years after obtaining a basic dental degree to have the necessary work experience and postgraduate training to reach the professional pinnacle - the fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons.

While this may not be the ultimate goal of every dental surgeon, even undergoing a masters in clinical dentistry in a dental speciality takes four years of postgraduate study.

Alternative Paths - There are Many Ways to Skin a Cat
There are clinically-rigorous certificate-level courses a young dental surgeon can undertake in dental implants, orthodontics and even oral surgery.

Dental Hospitals
Perhaps, it is time for the dental profession to pressure the government to open not just a dental hospital but a string of them, one in each state. They would serve as postgraduate teaching hospitals for postgraduate clinical dental courses at both masters, PhD and postdoctoral levels. Its been to be remembered that clinical courses been to be hospital- not campus-based, unlike purely academic courses. Masters students are already APCs holders so an earn-as-you-learn business model may be viable and applicable. The alternative - to give up two years of your professional earning life to pursue a full-time course has too high an opportunity cost.

In the Meantime What Can We Do?
From the business side, senior dental surgeons, particularly specialists, can provide mentorship programs with the eventual goal of opening additional clinics under a franchise program with the mentor. Dental Surgeons leaving government service after the three-year compulsory government service would be the target market. With a GDP as a PIC, these clinics will also provide referrals for patients who need speacialist treatmenr by their mentors. This is truly a win-win scenario.

A group practice model with perhaps dental surgical assistants, dental therapists, dental hygienists and even dental technologies working together perhaps under a cooperative model is something that needs to be explored and requires further study.

Now is the time to think out of the box and explore new business models and paradigms because we already know the same old same old ideas no longer work as they have broken down.

I am not a dental surgeon. I am trained in international business and management and provide a different perspective, a helicopter view from a management eye lens. I have a minority interest in a dental clinic. My daughter, ex-wife and many of my friends are all dental surgeons, some specialists. I am the founder of the Green Party of Malaysia, our principles go beyond socialist and deep ecology ideology but a more holistic approach to managing our biotic-associations with not just other species with which we share this planet but with all planetary resources. I am guided not just by Islamic principles of stewardship but also Buckmister Fuller’s Critical Path, an approach for a sustainable future for the planet. At the end of the day, sustainability is all about the survival of the human species. The planet does not need Homo sapiens, in fact, I dare say the planet would be better off without this destructive species. But Homo sapiens needs this planet to be in a clean, pure and healthy state if it wishes to survive as a species. Spaceship Earth is our only home, our whole evolutionary biological development was geared to living on this planet, not on Mars.

Copyright 2003-2019 Azlan Adnan. This blog post is sponsored by The Green Party of Malaysia

Wednesday, June 26, 2019



Pendekatan saya untuk mengatasi penyakit kencing manis agak berbeza sedikit dari pandangan kebanyakan ahli kesihatan dan pesakit kencing manis yang lain. Pendekatan yang saya amalkan ini berbeza dari segi pemakanan:

Diet Vegan Lemak Rendah
70-80% karbohidrat
10-15% lemak
10-15% protein

Walaupun semua karbohidrat akan dijadikan glukosa dalam badan kita, antara punca berlakunya rintangan insulin adalah seperti berikut:

Lemak berlebihan yang tersimpan di antara sel otot - intramyocellular lipids (juga dikenali sebagai extracellular lipids - lemak di luar sel).

Insulin boleh dianggap sebagai kunci pintu di tembok sel untuk membuka pintu masuk supaya glukosa dapat masuk ke dalam sel dan digunakan sebagai bahan sumber tenaga. 

Apabila lemak di sel lemak (adipose tissue) sudah penuh, lemak yang berlebihan akan berliaran dan masuk ke tempat yang tak patut (ectopic fat -misplaced fat). Lemak berlebihan dan terlalu banyak ini akan masuk ke dalam organ badan dan sel otot, ia juga akan menyebabkan saluran kunci tersumbat dan menghalang insulin berfungsi dengan akibat glukosa tidak dapat masuk ke dalam sel untuk digunakan sebagai sumber tenaga.

Semua penyakit ansuran yang berpunca dari penyakit  kencing manis seperti neuropathy, retinopathy, dermopathy dan sebagainya adalah disebabkan kematian sel akibat dari kekurangan sumber tenaga (glukosa). Ini berlaku kerana terlalu banyak lemak tersumbat yang menghalang glukosa masuk ke dalam sel. 

Cara untuk menghalang lemak daripada tersumbat dalam saluran:

1. Kurangkan pengambilan makanan berlemak dari semua sumber - sumber haiwan mahupun sumber tanaman.

Pantangkan pemakanan protein haiwan. Semua protein haiwan mengandungi lemak, ini adalah satu kenyataan. Perbezaannya sama ada banyak atau sedikit. Contoh  protein haiwan yang patut dipantang makan termasuklah:
- Semua daging dan telur (lembu, kambing, ayam, itik, rusa, unta, babi)
- Semua makanan laut (seafood): ikan, sotong, udang, ketam, siput dan sebagainya
- Semua makanan berasaskan tenusu: susu, dadih, keju, krim, tairoo dan sebagainya.

2. Bersenam
Bersenam dapat membakar lemak yang berlebihan. Tidak kira apa jua senaman yang dilalukan - asalkan kita berpeluh sekurang-kurangnya 30 minit setiap hari. Kita perlu bersenam berpeluhan 30 minit setiap hari. Tiada guna jika kita bersenam tiga jam hanya seminggu sekali.

3. Berpuasa di antara 16 ke 24 jam
1) Makan sarapan pagi yang berat di antara jam 8 pagi atau lebih awal. Makan tengah hari secara  bersederhana, makan malam yang ringan (sup atau salada/ulam) sebelum waktu maghrib, dan dituruti dengan puasa sehingga pagi keesokannya.

2) Kalau badan kita dapat bertahan yang lebih ekstrim, boleh cuba berpuasa seharian dengan hanya makan sekali sehari ketika waktu sahur.

Kedua-dua kaedah ini dibenarkan minum air kosong sahaja sewaktu berpuasa.

Cara ia berfungsi:
Badan kita memerlukan lebih kurang 2,300 kilokalori tenaga setiap hari. Ketika berpuasa, badan tidak menerima makanan dan diibaratkan seperti tidak mengisi minyak petrol ke dalam tangki kereta. Untuk bergerak dan menjalani aktiviti seharian, badan kita masih memerlukan 2300 kilokalori tersebut. Jadi, dari manakah sumber tenaga boleh didapati ketika berpuasa?

Jawapanya: Badan kita akan makan diri sendiri atau dikenali sebagai “autophagy.” Proses autophagy ini baru sahaja difahami dan dibentangkan oleh seorang saintis Jepun, Dr Yoshinori Ohsumi. Beliau telah memenangi Hadiah Nobel pada tahun 2016 dan ceritanya dapat dilihat di:

Pada mulanya badan kita akan menggunakan sel lemak untuk tenaga. Jika kita masih sambung berpuasa dan sudah hampir habis sel lemak digunakan sebagai sumber tenaga, badan kita akan cari sumber tenaga yang lain pula - badan kita akan menggunakan sel rosak dan sel yang tua sebagai sumber tenaga.

Apabila kita makan pula, badan kita akan membina sel yang baru dan muda untuk mengganti sel rosak dan tua yang telah digunakan sebagai sumber tenaga. Cara ini adalah kaedah semulajadi bagaimana badan kita menjalani awet diri - “rejuvenation.”

Ketika berpuasa, badan kita akan membakar lemak yang berlebihan seperti lemak di sel lemak (adipose tissue) serta lemak yang tersimpan di antara sel otot (intramyocellular lipid). Apabila lemak tersebut sudah habis, saluran tidak lagi tersumbat dan insulin dapat berfungsi untuk membuka pintu supaya glukosa boleh masuk ke dalam sel. Ini akan menstabilkan dan mengurangkan tahap glukosa dalam saluran darah.  

Kaedah dan pendekatan untuk mengatasi penyakit kencing manis ini dengan tentunya bukan boleh dapat keputusan serta merta. Ia akan mengambil masa dan tertakluk kepada keadaan masing-masing seperti kandungan lemak dalam badan, saiz badan, aktiviti fizikal (senaman), cara pemakanan, berpuasa atau tidak dan sebagainya. Kaedah ini akan mengambil masa yang lebih lama jika tidak menjaga pemakanan, tidak berpuasa dan tidak bersenam.

Pengalaman Saya 
Saya telah melalui dan mempunyai pengalaman mengamalkan pemakanan karbohidrat tinggi. Saya mengambil masa lima bulan (dari Oktober 18 2018 sehingga hujung Februari 2019) sebelum tahap glukosa darah saya turun sehingga dapat berhenti sepenuhnya dari pengambilan ubat metformin dan gliclazide.

Pengalam Saya Degan Diet Keto
Penyakit kencing manis saya adalah akibat mengamalkan kaedah ‘diet keto’ dari Disember 2016 sehingga Oktober 17 2018. ‘Keto diet’ ialah cara pemakanan yang mengamalkan pengambilan karbohidrat rendah, iaitu pengambilan lemak tinggi. Diet yang mengamalkan pengambilan karbohidrat rendah yang lain, iaitu diet pengambilan protein tinggi pula dinamakan “Atkins diet.”

“Keto diet” telah mengakibatkan hati saya penuh dengan lemak dan mengalami  NAFLD (Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease) serta penyakit kencing manis.

Pada Disember 2016 saya tidak menghidapi penyakit kencing manis tetapi hanya sedikit berat badan berlebihan (78 kg) dan saya ingin mengurangkan berat badan. Setelah dinasihat mengamalkan ‘keto diet,’ saya mengalami penurunan berat badan ke 71-72 kg. Tetapi saya kerap menghadapi sakit gout. Walaupun dah terkena kencing manis mulai Oktober 2017 saya masih mengamal ‘keto diet’ kerana mengikut nasihat pengamal yang lain bahawa ‘keto diet’ ini dapat menstabilkan kencing manis. Semakin lama, penyakit kencing manis saya semakin teruk. Pada mulanya (Oktober 2017) saya hanya diberi metformin tetapi selepas tiga bulan diberi tambahan gliclazide dan selepas tiga bulan lagi terpaksa menambah dos ubat.

Ini pengalaman pahit bagi saya. Saya hanya menyuarakan pendapat sahaja. Kalau mati-mati juga masih nak ikut diet keto, diet Atkins, diet karbohidrat rendah tidak ada masalah pada diri saya. Lantak engkau lah. Saya tak rugi apa-apa pun. Kalau nak ikut kaedah karbohidrat tinggi, saya pun tak untung apa-apa pun. Saya bukan menjual nasihat, jual ubat atau jual supplement. Mungkin kalau diredai Allah, dapat pahala sedikit kerana menceritakan cerita sebenar yang dapat membantu orang lain. In shaa Allah. 

Saya hanya menceritakan pengalaman pahit dan akibat jika terlalu mengikut nasihat orang lain tanpa usul periksa. 

Mulainya Perjalanan Untuk Membaikpulihkan Kesihatan Saya 
Pendekatan saya untuk mengatasi rintangan insulin mungkin berbeza dari pandangan orang lain. Saya mengamalkan pemakanan 70-80% karbohidrat, 10-15% lemak dan 10-15% protein; dan kesemuanya seratus peratus dari sumber tanaman, bukan dari sumber haiwan. Sekarang (Rabu Jun 26 2019) berat badan saya 67.1 kg - lebih rendah dari pada masa bila ikut diet keto (72 kg). Lipid profile pun lebih cantik. Perut pun dah kempis - kehilangan “visceral fat.”

Ini ialah video yang saya tonton pada Oktober 17 2018 yang mengubah fikiran saya serta memulakan perjalanan untuk membaikpulihkan kesihatan saya:

(Video ini hanya terdapat dalam Bahasa Inggeris).

End Note
With many thanks to the Saya Kuvings team for assistance with translation. Any mistakes and errors of fact, however, remain mine and solely mine. Following Marshall McLuhan’s advice to speak in a language your audience understands, this is my first attempt at writing for the layman in the Malay language - on any subject. I am writing for the Malay-speaking audience as I have been driven to exasperation by their inability to grasp the fundamentals of insulin resistance in English as nothing seems go to be available in the Malay language on a low-fat, high-carbohydrate Whole Food Plant Based no Sugars, Oils, Flours, Alcohol or Salt approach to reverse insulin resistance (aka Type 2 Diabetes). I sometimes call this a Vegan Minus Minus diet as its even more restrictive than veganism - no sugars, no oils, no flours and no salt crystals.

Copyright 2003-2019 Azlan Adnan.This blog post is sponsored by The Green Party of Malaysia

Thursday, June 13, 2019


Patient Information

A cataract is a clouding of the lens in the eye which leads to a decrease in vision. Cataracts often develop slowly and usually affect both eyes, but it can also affect only one eye, but rarely.

Cataracts cause half of all cases of blindness and 33% of visual impairment worldwide. Cataracts are most commonly due to aging but may also occur due to trauma or radiation exposure, be present from birth, or occur following eye surgery for other problems. 

Risk Factors
Risk factors include diabetes, smoking tobacco, prolonged exposure to sunlight, and alcohol. This means having these factors, you may get a cataract earlier. I always wear sunglasses when on the beach, but it only delays the onset of cataracts:

In my case, I do OPGs regularly (for my dental implant surgeries) and exposure to the ionising radiation from the X-rays may also be a contributory risk factor.

I’ve also had laser eye surgery done previously, to correct my retinal detachment. Another risk factor.

As a diabetic, you are advised to have your eyes examined at the age of 40. A general examination and screening for cataract, glaucoma and whatever else. Then, once you are registered at an Ophthalmology Department and have a file and records there, you can always go back if you start having any eye problems. In my experience, better to be registered before you need anything done or else later very troublesome, as you’ll need to secure a referral letter and whatever. When you are sick and need treatment, its so annoying to have to first do this that and whatever - it drives me crazy so better be prepared, since we are already in the diabetic high risk group.

If you are above 40, never had your eyes examined before, the next time you see your physician who treats you for your diabetes, just ask him or her to refer you to an ophthalmologist for an eye examination to screen for cataract and glaucoma. Ophthalmology departments are only found in a hospital setting. The best eye hospital/Ophthalmology department in Malaysia is at Selayang Hospital, as all the senior government specialists are based there and since its a new hospital, they have the latest equipment.

All the eye patients and friends I’ve spoken to say don’t ever go to the Tun Hussein Onn Eye Hospital, even though its supposed to be a specialist eye hospital. Bloody hopeless, they say. Old hospital, old equipment, old techniques, all out-dated and what not.

The underlying mechanism of cataract involves accumulation of clumps of protein or yellow-brown pigment in the lens that reduces transmission of light to the retina at the back of the eye.

Oxidation of proteins in the lens of the eyes produces this yellow-brown pigment that also causes what I see to appear yellow-brownish in colour.

Symptoms may include faded colors, blurry or double vision, halos around light, trouble with bright lights, and trouble seeing at night. This may result in trouble driving, reading, or recognizing faces. 

In my case, when viewing black text on websites using my iPad or iPhone, the text appears gray. I also have difficulty distinguishing navy blue from black (appears black to me).

Also, reading small print is difficult and even when corrected with reading glasses, my near vision is still not perfect when reading. The blurriness, lack of contrast and greying/fading of text makes reading tedious and very tiring.

I also find trying to read messages on my iPhone first thing upon waking difficult. A little easier an hour or two after waking up.


This video is by an optometrist, who are not considered doctors in Malaysia, only in the US.

Copyright 2003-2019 Azlan Adnan This blog post is sponsored by The Green Party of Malaysia

Saturday, June 08, 2019

Lack of Education Leads to Impoverishment and Disempowerment

Lack of Education Leads to Impoverishment and Disempowerment
Bandung, June 7 2010

This little girl was drenched from head to toe in the rain. She walks between cars stuck in the traffic jam trying to sell sets of lesung batu (mortar and pestle) slung across her tiny shoulders. Mortar and pestle sets are not exactly what one buys off the street so its not surprising that she's not had much sales. You can see the desperation in her eyes. Makes me wonder where her next meal is coming from, whether her parents would beat her when she returns home empty-handed. Poverty is so terrible ~ drives people to desperation. Education is the solution, it is empowering.

It is the duty of the State to provide free education as education is the only way out of the poverty trap. Some countries provide free education for primary schoolchildren; others make it a criminal offence for parents not to send their children to secondary school. Enlightened countries like France, Germany and Finland provide free education up to PhD level. Some countries with burgeoning populations cannot even afford to build enough primary schools to provide every child with a place in school. Makes one wonder if they are setting themselves up for a future criminal/social time bomb...

The little boys (one of them was bare-footed) fare no better. They earn a pittance (1,000 rupiahs = 30 sen) to hail a taxi from the street for you and to escort you to the taxi under the shade of their umbrellas ~ rain or shine...

Without education, their future is bleak for you can also see adults plying a similar trade ~ selling newspapers, cigarettes, toys, lottery tickets and etc. ~ at traffic jams and street corners.

The Poverty Trap
Without education, this is the future those little children can look forward to. In fact, they have been so deprived of hope that this is the future many of them aspire to. That is why the good work of enlightened people like Razak Ahmad and others who help provide an education for these children should be applauded and whole-heartedly supported.

When a government imports one million of these adult street "traders" to get enough votes to bring down an opposition State government, as they did in Sabah's infamous 'Project M,' doesn't it make you wonder: "What were they thinking?"

Universities are powerful builders of human capital. Yet in the headlong race for a more globally-competitive generation, are we sacrificing serendipity? Higher education has never been only about Grade Point Averages and networking, its also been about being young and open-minded. Its been about experiencing life and making memories. As Emerson said, memory “holds together past and present and gives continuity and dignity to human life.”

To view the photos, go to:

Copyright 2003-2019 Azlan Adnan This blog post is sponsored by The Green Party of Malaysia

Six Minutes to Midnight, Part 3

Six Minutes to Midnight, Part 3
A Second Bite at the Cherry

My father was not my mother’s first love. My step-father was. Let me explain...

I have written previously how highly my mother regarded education and how the paternal side of her family were descended from missionaries that originated from Baghdad.

Her father, Haji Ismail, a tok guru ugama, was the guru besar of a humble sekolah kampung in Sungai Bakap.

So it probably comes as no surprise that my mom decided to take up the family vocation and become a teacher herself. She did well enough to be selected to Malay Girls College (now re-named Kolej Tunku Khursiah - TKC - Tunku Khursiah College), the all-girls equivalent of the all-boys MCKK - Malay College Kuala Kangsar. Both were boarding schools set up by the British to train Malays for entry to the administrative services.

After MGC, she trained in Kirkby College, a teacher’s training college (now defunct, not to be confused with a secondary school of the same name) and at Homerton College, Cambridge University.

At Kirkby, my mom met her first love - a Syed who was her senior. They fell madly in love and planned to get married. But his mother, a Sharifah, would have none of it - “only a Sharifah is good enough for my Syed son!,” she exclaimed and vowed that if they eloped and got married against her wishes, she would do everything within her power to make my mom’s life miserable.

Syed’s love for Siti Rohani was so boundless, so sacrificial, that he couldn’t bear the thought of Siti Rohani suffering or being miserable in the slightest. So he sacrificed his love for her and they agreed to break up. I use the word “agreed” advisedly, as we shall soon see.

He ended up marrying a Sharifah of his mother’s choosing.

My mom ended up marrying my dad who is of Minangkabau, Dutch and Bugis ancestry. More about my paternal great-grandfather here:

Fast forward half a century or so.

My father passed away in 2002. Exactly a year later, I was at my mom’s house late one night when the phone rang at 2300 hrs. An unfamiliar voice asked to speak to my mom. My first thought was “siapa orang tua gila ni telefon tengah malam buta ini?” (who’s this crazy bugger calling this late at night?), then I thought maybe it was some kind of emergency that couldn’t wait til the morning.

Anyway, it was Syed. He had heard from the Kirkby old boys’ and girls’ network that Siti Rohani’s husband had passed away. He patiently waited one whole year to give my mom space to grieve my dad’s passing before contacting her, before making that fateful phone call I took.

You see, the Sharifah he married had passed away five years earlier, of cancer. His children pestered him to re-marry, “You need someone to take care of you in your old age” was the reasoning. But he refused, saying “If I were to re-marry, there is only one person in this world I would marry but since she’s taken, end of discussion. I will hear no more of it.”

I sense they must have made some kind of lover’s pact when they parted ways half a century earlier because they got married very soon after. I don’t know for a fact - one doesn’t discuss one’s mother’s love life with one’s mother, does one? - but its pretty obvious to the casual observer.

Anyway, they had a Chinese dinner wedding reception at the Park Royal - which raised a few eyebrows. My mom was her usual “Its my wedding, suka hati aku lah nak makan apa asalkan halal.” What I can say about my mom’s religious upbringing, being the daughter of a religious tok guru yet trained in the best of the West as a teacher is that she’s progressive, pragmatic and essentialist. She is a Hajah many times over and in that period of her life when her health permitted it, she’d go on umrah annually - mostly with her mak datin ex TKC kaki. She took Arabic language night classes at the International Islamic University of Malaysia for several years.

The Arabic the learnt was classical Arabic and was of not much practical use as a means of everday conversation. On her annual trips to Mecca: she’d practise her newly-acquired linguistic skills at the bazaar buying oranges and was laughed back in the face by the Arab traders for her efforts. Why? Because classical Arabic is as remote to contemporary Arabic as Shakespearean English is to what we speak now. My mom had literally asked the market trader, “Verily, pray thee tell me how much are thou oranges?” 

I remember her telling me that she took them so that she could read the Quran with understanding, not just to recite but knowing the meaning of what she was vocalising. This intimate understanding of the core of Islam is what informs her about what is essential in Islam, and what is not. What is the budaya Hindu in Malay culture, what really is it that Islam demands of us and what it does not. She is very clear about this. As a seasoned traveller, one of my mom’s favourite retorts to confused Malay katak bawah tempurong ulamaks is “There are more Muslims in China than there are Malaysians.”

She can be very critical of those who focus on the embellishments and fluff around Malay religious and cultural practices as opposed to focussing on what Islam really prescribes. She can go on ad nauseam for days on end, if the mood strikes her. There were no end of examples.

After all, culturally and linguistically, the Malays are basically Hindus with a thin veneer of 700 years of Islam. Scratch beneath the surface, another animal altogether is revealed.

Anyway, that is how my step-father and mother got to get their chance to have a second bite at the cherry, as the idiom goes...

Part 2

Part 1

Copyright 2003-2019 Azlan Adnan This blog post is sponsored by The Green Party of Malaysia

Six Minutes to Midnight, Part 2

Six Minutes to Midnight, Part 2
Sixty Seconds of Distance Run

You know, when I think about it, my mom was a feminist even before the word became fashionable.

She was always for empowerment via education, whether for boys or girls. I think, in her little way, the students at St Mary’s and Vivikananda not just learnt a thing or two about BM and sports but also some semangat - as you say, that the stars are reachable.

Let me tell you two incidents in her early life that perhaps shaped mummy’s worldview.

The first is a dark family secret that’s okay to be made public now that she is beyond the reproach of petty bureaucrats. 

1) This will come as a shock - my mom was never “Siti Rohani.”

After World War 2, resources were scarce and education infrastructure was limited. School places were very limited and only those below a certain age can get a place in school. So, my mom, who even as a child, knew the value of education, took the birth certificate of her dead younger sister and used it to enrol in school. This was in stark contrast to her contemporaries who missed the boat and were delighted they didn’t have to go to school.

My mother is one of the few people whose NRIC/MyKad number has an asterisk at the back - this denotes that the IC number does not reflect her real date of birth. In fact, until now, there is no living relative who knows my mom’s real name. I am just so proud that she has honoured her dead sister (who died during WWII) by living a life well lived. Having taken on her dead sister’s identity, she had done her sister proud by living the life that she did. My mom’s IC number was of the form
150835–XX-1234* where most would expect her birthday to be August 15, 1935 but her actual date of birth is September 22 1934 and she has always celebrated Sept 22 as her birthday.

2) When my mom was about 10, she was playing barefoot around her kampung house in Sungai Bakap when she stepped on the bangkai of a cobra by accident. She developed a wound under her left heel that never left her. Its some kind of nerve-ending wound that just doesn’t heal. When it gets infected, as it did countless times there is pus and what not. She’s had operations to cut away the infected bits, (not just debridements but something like a mini-amputation) but the wound keeps coming back. In the 1960s, when radiotherapy was the latest toy in the medical world, she’s had her foot zapped by X-rays but it never did any good. The never-healing wound was, as Christians would say, her cross to bear in life, a literal Achille’s heel. She’s had so much flesh surgically removed from her heel that later in life she developed bone spurs.

Anyway, it never stopped her from playing hockey for Malaysia, from swimming, diving (as a young child I’d look up to her at the highest level of the diving tower at Weld Swimming Pool in pure admiration as she gracefully plunged head first without a splash into the pool 30 feet below), or anything, really. Despite this condition, she never walked with a limp and most of her students were probably oblivious of her condition. That’s the semangat she’s made of and I’m pretty sure some it has rubbed off onto her students. The sort of spirit that builds badminton champions like Fong Chooi Yong and Ho Lai Wan.  

My mother’s paternal side comes from a long line of missionaries that can be traced all the way back to Baghdad - the furthest ancestors we could trace were called “Al-Baghdadi” - ‘the ones from Baghdad.’ The family vocation as missionaries was to travel the world spreading Islam by opening madrasah or sekolah pondok teaching recitation of the Quran and arithmetic wherever they went. They married locals and the next generation would travel further East, to Afghanistan and then finally to Kampong Sungai Bakap where my mom was born. Same kampung whose family writer Kee Thuan Chye hails from.

Tuesday, June 04, 2019



Diabetes is not one disease but many. Let me clarify what I mean by “diabetes is not one disease but many.” There are, in fact, 47 medical conditions that result in elevated blood glucose levels, the symptom all these conditions have in common.

The most common form, affecting 95% of patients is Type 2 Diabetes, a reversible dietary condition. Change your diet and you can reverse Type 2 Diabetes, aka Insulin Resistance.

The common symptom in Pre-Diabetes, Type 1, Type 1.5 and Type 2 Diabetes and the rest of these conditions is elevated blood glucose, but the underlying causes are different. As such, different treatment protocols need to be applied to treat the respective diseases.

Type 1 Diabetes
With Type 1 diabetes, the beta cells (islets of Langerhans) in the pancreas does not produce sufficient insulin or none at all. The reason may be genetic or an acute viral infection that triggers an autoimmune response that kills the beta cells. These patients have to rely on exogenous insulin (insulin injections) to make up for the lack of insulin production.

Patients eating the wrong diet can develop insulin resistance (Type 2 Diabetes) layered on top of Type 1 Diabetes over time. As this progresses, they need to have increasingly larger doses of insulin. However, the Type 2 component of their Diabetes can be reversed through diet, leading to a 40% reduction in insulin required daily.

Patients with Type 1 Diabetes due to genetics are usually diagnosed as children or adolescents.

If due to an autoimmune reaction, they are diagnosed after they have had an acute viral infection, perhaps as a child or later in life.

Insulin Resistance
Pre-Diabetes, Type 2 Diabetes and Type 3 Diabetes (Insulin Resistance of the Brain, Alzheimer’s Disease, Dementia, Nyanyuk) are all caused by Insulin Resistance. Insulin Resistance of the Liver is more commonly known as Non Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD).

Pre-Diabetes & Type 2 Diabetes
Pre-Diabetes and Type 2 Diabetes are both caused by wrong diet leading to Insulin Resistance of the muscle cells throughout the body. Its a matter of degree, undiagnosed and untreated patients with Pre-Diabetes often progress to Type 2 Diabetes. That’s why its important to do blood and urine tests annually, every six months if you’re over 50.

Type 1.5 Diabetes
Type 1.5 Diabetes is patients with Type 2 Diabetes who then develop Type 1 Diabetes layered on top. They may be a Type 2 Diabetic who get a viral infection that triggers an autoimmune response that kills their beta cells that produces insulin. But more often, they are Type 2 patients who were prescribed gliclazide to boost insulin production. Gliclazide puts the beta cells into hyperdrive to boost insulin production. Over time, the beta kills burn out and die (atrophy). Then, the patients need to start taking exogenous insulin injections.

It can also occur in Type 2 patients naturally, meaning their body naturally boosts its insulin production to reduce the elevated blood glucose levels. Again, over time such over-production of insulin may cause the beta cells to burn out and die prematurely.


Diabetes Science


Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1.5 Diabetes

Type 2 Diabetes | Insulin Resistance

Type 3 Diabetes | Alzheimer’s Disease | Dementia

Gestational Diabetes

Diabetic Neuropathy

Diabetes & Obesity


Copyright 2003-2019 Azlan Adnan This blog post is sponsored by The Green Party of Malaysia

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Six Minutes to Midnight

Six Minutes to Midnight
Part 1, Reflections on a Life Well Lived

I have a friend whose uncle, like my late mom, also has an * IC number by the name of “Khalid” but everyone calls him “Pak Ali.” Turns out its the same story - he used a dead younger brother’s birth certificate to enrol himself to go to school. 

Thing is this - after the war, schools were limited in number and so were school places. There was a cut-off age and those older than that age didn’t get to go to school as there were not enough places. So people like Tok and Pak Ali used a dead younger sibling’s birth cert to register in order to attend school. In Tok’s case, she was actually born on Sept 22 1934 but used a birth cert dated Aug 13 1935.

Even at that young age, Tok realised the value of education. Her father and his ancestors came from Baghdad via Afghanistan. They were missionaries and travelled the world opening madrasah where they taught reading, writing, arithmetic and reading the Holy Quran. Perhaps Tok had seen how her father’s educated pupils led better lives than their uneducated contemporaries. You’ll also note that both Tok and grandpa were the most educated among their siblings. The only ones in their families to go study in England.

That’s why, in our family, we place so much emphasis and encouragement on education. And Tok was a teacher because that was what her father’s side of the family did as a family profession. Maybe that’s why Azman is a scuba and flying instructor - teaching is in our genes.

In our family, we NEVER say “she’s a girl, takpe kalau tak belajar kuat-kuat, just get married and let your husband look after you,” unlike in so many other Malay families.

I’m writing this as a tribute to honour Tok’s memory, and to celebrate her life - a life well-lived. I don’t think she wants to be mourned and for us to be sad. Knowing Tok, she’d want us to take what we can from her life and use it as an example to lead our own lives. I know that would make her very happy indeed...

IC numbers take the form YYMMDD-12-345M
where YY are the last two digits of the year of birth, MM denotes the month of birth, DD denotes day of month. M is an odd digit for males, and even digit for females. Very rarely, as in the case of mom and “Pak Ali,” their IC number has an asterisk (*) after M, like so:
340101-01-1234*. This denotes that the first six digits of the IC number does not denote their actual date of birth.

Copyright 2003-2019 Azlan Adnan Legal Notice Copyright 2003-2019 Azlan Adnan. This blog post is sponsored by The Green Party of Malaysia

Monday, December 31, 2018

Once We Were Beautiful

Prefaced by a Malaysian expat who prefers to remain anonymous:

I am viciously critical of unfairness.

I know the saying life isn't fair, it's said by arseholes who don't care about making the world a better place, their interest begins and ends with looking out for number one.

My country has gone so far downhill from the country I knew in the '60s that frankly, I don't want to live there any more.

Sure, I have dozens of friends I get along well with, and if I just cast my gaze no further than my friends, I could be happy. 

Unfortunately, that is not in my character. I devour news, and I could not be oblivious to all I hate about the Malaysia of today.

I met up with old and dear friends for lunch today, and someone I met for the first time, friend of a friend, asked why I live in Thailand when I could live in Malaysia.

He wouldn't accept that I was here because of my wife, so I admitted I prefer to live here.

Here, as long as I pay my bills and behave myself, I'm a welcome guest. Yes, I don't have any political or citizenship rights, my only appeal is to the Constitution and Human Rights.

In the country of my birth and citizenship, I am a fourth class citizen, an afterthought.

Do I have citizenship rights? Not really, when the Constitution guarantees freedom of religion and minority religions are persecuted by Islamist fanatics, I don't think so.

Human Rights are subservient to Islamo-Fascist activists, while the so called silent majority do exactly that, remain silent.

You think I am exaggerating?

Art Harun is a social commentator I have a deal of respect for, and apparently was recently appointed as Chairman of the Election Commission, replacing the unknown Toady who preceded him.

He wrote beautifully of the Malaya/Malaysia of the '60s. That was exactly how we lived, my Malay, Chinese and Indian schoolmates and neighbours are like brothers to me. They are my family.

That doesn't exist anymore.

Read the article I reproduce below and understand why my heart bleeds.

And let's be very clear, if I had children in a school that closed the canteen during the fasting month, I would transfer them immediately. If I hadn't the means for a private school, I'd put them in a Chinese school. My daughter speaks Cantonese anyway, a result of her fascination with the Chinese soap operas of her youth.

Anyway, the piece by the esteemed Art Harun.


Read below and savor the throwback to the 60s that Art Harun, our new EC Chairman, has pulled together.... those were the days, my friends (pls viral it, to shake up our sick society):

“Art Harun, the new Chairman of Election Commission.


Once we were beautiful
Art Harun, TMI

I am blessed.

So are many of my friends who are of or around my age.

So are many who are older than me.

As a child of the 60s, I went through my formative years in an English-stream school. It was a big school in town.

And there were hundreds of us Malays, Chinese and Indian boys (it wasn’t co-ed).

Our first headmaster was a Chinese gentleman who was as fierce as they came those days.

When he left, he was replaced by an Indian gentleman, who also was as fierce.

My first class teacher was Ms Leong, all long haired and short skirted.

And yes, armed with a wooden ruler, she would knock my knuckles for failing to properly write the number 8.

My first English sentence, learnt on the first day at school was to be uttered after raising my right hand, “Please teacher may I go out?”

That was to be said if any of us had to go to the toilet to do the normal stuffs we all do in the toilet (and not to eat).

Then there were Mr Linggam, Cikgu Aziz and wife, Sharom, Mr Lee the karate guy, Mr Khor, Cikgu Mutalib and various others.

We were a happy bunch. We played together, ate together, learned together and of course, at times, punished together.

And we were equal. In standard 5, I began fasting.

The school canteen stayed open for the whole month.

No renovation. No closure. Muslim and non-Muslim kids, who did not fast, ate as usual.

If they bought a proper meal, such like nasi lemak or mee goreng, they would eat at the canteen.

If it was some kind of snack, they would just eat while walking around, in the class or where ever.

No fuss. No issue. No problem.

My impressionable years were spent in a boarding school. It was the same scenario.

All of us, regardless of race or religion studied together, ate together, played together and at times, getting one or two rotan together.

Visiting a non-Malay house was not a problem.

Eating there was not a problem too. Sharing food with non-Muslims was not an issue.

Things have however, sadly, changed.

And change for the worse. Nowadays, non-Muslims don’t send their kids to national school anymore.

They prefer to send the kids to the vernacular schools.

The ones who could afford would send their kids to private schools.

National schools are almost invariably filled with Muslim/Malay students.

National schools would recite prayers before class begin in the morning.

Quranic verses and hadith would adorn walls in the canteen, school office and even classes.

Ustaz and ustazah would even ask school kids to raise their hands if their parents do not pray 5 times a day.

In secondary schools, the tudung is not compulsory for girls – according to the Ministry of Education’s circular, if I am not mistaken – but girls without tudung would be viewed askance by schoolmates and teachers alike.

Due to the small number of non-Muslim/Malay kids in national schools, the Malay kids do not have the opportunity to mix around and integrate with non-Malays in their formative and impressionable years.

The small number of non-Malay kids also gives a sense of false superiority complex to the Malay kids as well as teachers.

Thus, my race and my religion are more important than you, your religion and everything else.

Hence the closure of the school canteen during Ramadhan.

This is prevailing in many national schools. Apparently, this is done to “respect” the Muslim students who are fasting.

Forget the fact that non-Muslims do not fast and they, like any other human beings or animals, have to eat and drink.

Forget the fact that there are Muslim kids who do not fast.

Anybody who just about mentions the word “food” would have been taken as insulting Islam.

On Facebook last week, there were two guys admonishing a hotel which advertised its breakfast package on its page.

They viewed it as disrespectful.

But to be fair, the two were widely condemned by other Muslim facebookers.

The eating-in-the-changing-room debacle yesterday is just the surface of a far unhealthier trend in Malaysia.

Beneath that surface is a society which is fractious, intolerant, selfish and uncompromising.

The obvious question is how did we, as a nation, become like this? As a nation we started so well.

The Federal Constitution was agreed upon by consensus between three major races anchored to give-and-take and win-win camaraderie.

There was a blemish in 1969 but that was quickly nipped in the bud and we soldiered on.

In football, we were in the Olympic final in 1972 and 1980.

By the law of progression, we should be in the World Cup by now. By contrast, Japan and Korea, whom we used to beat, were already in the quarter-finals of the World Cup.

We now struggle to beat the likes of Vietnam and even Singapore.

Like our football team, the state of our racial integration and inter-faith relationship has moved in reverse gear.

Years of political posturing utilizing religion and race have now begun to show its ugly consequences.

The so-called Islamisation that we embark upon, which is shorn of any meaningful spiritual understanding of the religion, but rather born out of political necessities, convenience and mired in political one-upmanship has now produced a nation which is unsure of itself and a people who are fractious, angry, suspicious and at odd with each other.

We need to take a real good look at ourselves and examine our ways. And we need to reboot our operating system if we want to avoid a total crash. And we need to reboot fast.

Copyright 2003-2018 Azlan Adnan. This blog post is sponsored by The Green Party of Malaysia

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

DIABETES | More Thoughts

DIABETES | More Thoughts

I was shocked to learn that there are a quarter of a million diabetics in the UK on the wrong (low carb) diet, and being advised and encouraged by to eat low carbs.

How can they even claim to get good results? And even win awards? Maybe, temporarily, in the short term...

Jason Fung advocates low carb, keto diet yet he says ectopic fat is the cause of insulin resistance... Can’t he see the elephant in the room?

My theory on “why some people eat a western diet and are not diabetic” (yet) is simple: They have lots of fat cells to store the fat they eat but don’t burn up. 

Its only the ectopic fat that becomes intramyocellular lipids that causes insulin resistance; not fats stored in fat cells.

Why they have lots of fat cells and not others is largely genetic. However, when their fat cells are saturated and if they continue to eat excess fat, they’ll get ectopic fat and develop insulin resistance.

Its not weight reduction per se that is the end goal but getting rid of the intramyocellular lipids and fat in fat cells. While getting rid of those fats will result in weight loss, exercising will build muscle mass and may actually result in some weight gain.

Its percentage body fat that needs to come down.

Fats in the liver is a bit tricky to get rid off as exercise doesn’t help. I’ve done coffee enemas and they’ve helped me. Mastering Diabetes seem to be silent on this modality, largely, I suspect, simply because they just have yet to explored it.

I see the liver as a battery. An energy storage battery that you charge by feeding it glucose. It converts the glucose to the polysaccharide glycogen and stores it. When the body requires energy, it converts the glycogen back to glucose and releases it into the bloodstream for uptake by the muscles.

When a battery is already fully charged, it will not be able to store more energy. Likewise, the liver which is already full of glycogen will not be able to store more so it just doesn’t convert glucose to glycogen, resulting in elevated blood glucose levels.

I have an issue with the common diabetic medication metformin, which works by impairing the liver’s ability to convert glycogen to glucose. By reducing the amount of glucose it releases into the bloodstream, it keeps blood glucose levels low.

But, at what cost? The corollary is that it keeps glycogen levels in the liver high, indirectly keeping it saturated and reducing its ability to convert excess blood glucose to glycogen and hence keeping blood glucose levels elevated.

This is where fasting comes in, to get rid of all that excess energy already in the body - glucose, glycogen and fats - all in one stroke.

Then, when we do eat, its vital to not add more fat to avoid becoming more insulin resistant. To eat complex carbohydrate, not monosaccharides or disaccharides. Even though all carbohydrates eventually get broken down to glucose, the idea is to drip feed the body with glucose, not inundate with a tsunami of glucose.

The operative word is “eventually,” - the longer this takes, they less likely of a blood glucose spike. Without exercise, the body burns energy at a steady rate, if we add more energy than the burn rate, we have excess energy and end up with an energy storage problem. In the first instance, as elevated blood glucose.

Of course, we can increase the burn rate - that’s where exercise comes in.

An extreme would be to exercise while fasting. That would be like cleaning out the fuel storage tanks.

We need to set the example and be the change we wish to see in the world...

Sunday, December 23, 2018


How Cheese and Low-Carbohydrate Diets Cause Chronic Disease
Neal Barnard, MD, FACC

Neal Barnard, MD, FACC, is a New York Times bestselling author, a physician and a clinical researcher who runs the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, a non-profit organization that promotes preventative medicine and higher standards for ethics in research. Dr. Barnard has written 18 books, including “Dr. Neal Barnard’s Program for Reversing Diabetes,” in which he clearly lays out a program that is designed to target and reverse the root cause of diabetes using low-fat, plant-based, whole-food nutrition.

Copyright 2003-2018 Azlan Adnan. This blog post is sponsored by The Green Party of Malaysia


Robert H. Lustig

Robert H. Lustig (born 1957) is an American pediatric endocrinologist. He is Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), where he specializes in neuroendocrinology and childhood obesity. He is also director of UCSF's WATCH program (Weight Assessment for Teen and Child Health), and president and co-founder of the non-profit Institute for Responsible Nutrition.

Robert Lustig came to public attention in 2009 when one of his medical lectures, "Sugar: The Bitter Truth," went viral on YouTube. He is the editor of Obesity Before Birth: Maternal and Prenatal Influences on the Offspring (2010), and author of Fat Chance: Beating the Odds against Sugar, Processed Food, Obesity, and Disease (2013).

1957, Brooklyn, New York

Bachelor's, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1976.
MD, Cornell University Medical College, 1980.
Residency in pediatriacs, St. Louis Children's Hospital, 1983.
Clinical fellowship in pediatric endocrinology, University of California, San Francisco Medical Center, 1984.
Postdoctoral fellowship in neuroendocrinology, Rockefeller University, 1986.
Master of Studies in Law, University of California, Hastings College of the Law

Clinical medical practice, teaching and research in neuroendocrinology, pediatric endocrinology

University of California, San Francisco, UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital

Childhood obesity, metabolic syndrome

Biochemical, neural, hormonal and genetic influences contributing to obesity


Copyright 2003-2018 Azlan Adnan. This blog post is sponsored by The Green Party of Malaysia


How to Ask for Support from Your Medical Team, Friends, and Family
Kylie Buckner, RN

Kylie Buckner, RN is a registered nurse and has a master’s degree in nursing education. She has more than 18 years of experience as a nurse in the neonatal intensive care unit, in labor and delivery, in OB-GYN, and in pediatrics. She has dedicated her life to caring for people as a nurse and has an in-depth understanding of the challenges of adopting a plant-based lifestyle. She specializes in helping people talk with their healthcare providers about their plant-based transition. She is also a certified yoga teacher and has been 100% plant-based for over 6 years. Kylie is a coach at Mastering Diabetes and provides support to our members every day. 


Intermittent Fasting for Maximum Weight Loss: Understanding the Connection between Fatty Liver, Insulin Resistance and High Cholesterol

Robby Barbaro
Robby Barbaro was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 12 and has been living a low-fat, plant-based, whole-food lifestyle since 2006. He graduated from the University of Florida, and is a cofounder of Mastering Diabetes. He worked at Forks Over Knives for 6 years before deciding to coach people with diabetes to exceptional health. Robby eats pounds of fruit every day, has stable blood glucose control, and has coached thousands of people towards exceptional health living with all forms of diabetes. Robby enjoys exercising every day, spending time with friends, and sharing his lifestyle on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Cyrus Khambatta, PhD
Cyrus Khambatta, PhD, is a cofounder of Mastering Diabetes and has been living with type 1 diabetes since 2002. Using an evidence-based approach to nutrition and fitness, he first reduced his own insulin usage by more than 40%, and has educated thousands of people with all forms of diabetes how to reverse insulin resistance using diet and exercise. Cyrus earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University in 2003, then earned a PhD in Nutritional Biochemistry from the University of California at Berkeley in 2012.

Monday, December 17, 2018



A friend asked me a simple question about juicing (see photo). Here is my lengthy and comprehensive response, which I believe deserves a wider audience; which is why I’m putting it in the public domain. I’m also sharing my playlist of 40 juicing and smoothie recipes.

Depends on volume, but even then slow cold pressed juices are best as a supplement as you really need more (insoluble) fibre in a meal. I make smoothies in my Kuvings SV-500 vacuum blender as meal replacements. The vacuum blender blends the fruit and water mixture in a vacuum, preventing oxidation of the nutrients. In addition to fruit, I add oil seeds, rye flakes, rolled oats or oat bran for additional nutrients and dietary fibre. And sometimes a teaspoon or two of lecithin granules as both a dietary supplement and an emulsifying agent. My juice and smoothie recipes are archived here:

You’ll notice I tend to use a lot of ingredients, but a bit of everything. The idea behind that is to get a diversity of nutrients from assorted sources. Besides, I already tried just about every 2- or 3-ingredient blends and am now more adventurous. 

Notes and nutritional info about the fruits and other stuff I juice and blend are archived in the album called SMOOTHIE INGREDIENTS available here:

First thing to know is that you really need to use a slow juicer, aka cold pressed or masticating juicer. I use the Korean brand Kuvings, Model EVO820.

None of the regular white goods brands make slow juicers, due to intellectual property reasons. Breville in Australia sells a previous generation (i.e. old model) Kuvings made under licence from Kuvings with some cosmetic changes to make it look like the rest of the Breville range.

Do not buy a Kuvings online at discount sites - they use brushless motors that are very sensitive to both voltage and frequency. They design different motors for different markets and many online sites (Lazada is notorious for doing this) sell grey imports meant for different markets that will not work properly and damaging the motor when used in a market whose electricity voltage and/or AC frequency it is not designed for. Usual problem is over-heating or motor burn out.

If you use a centrifugal juicer, like a Moulinex or Philips, or even a Breville, the mechanism is a high-speed grate spinning against the fruit at a few thousand rpm. This speed forces a lot of air into the juice, oxidising it and destroying 90% of the nutrients within 90 seconds. In this video from 2:14:00 the expert especially mentions the (expensive) brand Vitamix as being useless due to the very high speed of its motor:

Another advantage of a slow juicer is that it retains the soluble fibre in the juice. If you let it stand, the juice will not separate out, i.e. there is no sedimentation, even after 8 hours. It will not oxidise and retains its colour and nutritional value. The pulp that is discarded is mostly insoluble fibre but actually also contains loads of phyto-nutrients, trace elements and etc. That’s why I now do smoothies more often - so that I consume the lot. And because of the insoluble fibre, its more suitable as a meal replacement, especially if you drink 800 to 1,200 ml of smoothie at one go, like I do as a meal replacement.

In many food stalls in Malaysia, its even worse, they use a blender, add water and sugar syrup and then filter the resulting mush to give you the “jus buah.”

How juicing works can be summed up in two words: “nutrient density.” Many people get results drinking as little as 250 ml of slow juice a day at breakfast. They say they don’t feel the same the rest of the day (more sluggish, less alert) if they miss their morning fix. Its like taking your daily dose of vitamins but instead of pill popping, getting the nutrients fresh from source.

Hope this explains and helps. If you have more questions, I’d be happy to answer. The father of juicing is Jay The Juiceman Kordich. He died recently at a ripe old age. He’s written a number of books and there are lots of videos by him on YouTube. He and other experts advocate specific juice combinations for specific ailments.

I have no scientific evidence to attribute improvement in my mental health solely to juicing - I can’t prove the causality for a fact, to the exclusion of other factors. But I’m pretty sure it plays a role. Our body can heal itself, it just needs lots of good quality sleep and nutrients as the building blocks to manufacture what it needs. Juicing is a really good way to load ourselves with nutrients, save eating the fruits themselves. By removing the bulk, it concentrates the nutrients. But then again, the pulp that we discard also contains good stuff; so best to do a combination of juicing, smoothies and eating whole fruits and vegetables.

Oh, our gut carries about 2 kg of microbiomes. These gut bacteria feed on the insoluble fibre and produce nutrients that we cannot get from the plant kingdom. This solves a mystery for me - my mom and I know of many lifelong Indian vegans - vegetarians from birth - who are a lot healthier than omnivores. This puzzled me because the anti-vegans keep saying vitamin B12 and some essential amino acids can only be obtained from the animal kingdom as plants don’t make them. Well, the good news is that the gut microbiome makes them for us, especially if you’re Indian and drink lassi and tairoo, i.e. probiotics, as part of your culinary cultural heritage.

Originally posted at: 


Copyright 2003-2011 Azlan Adnan. This blog post is sponsored by The Green Party of Malaysia