Secret to longevity lies in healing body, says Singaporean doctor

Source The Daily Star

The secret to longevity lies in healing the body, said a Singaporean doctor.

Dr Ang Poon Liat, senior paediatrician and the founder and chairman of the specialist Thomson Paediatric group practice based at Thomson Medical Centre in Singapore, said healing is the single-most valuable exercise towards healthy longevity.

Diseases such as arthritis, diabetes, and cancer are not caused by old age or accidents, he said while lecturing on “The Secrets Behind Healthy Longevity” during the 21st Friday forum at the Royal Institute of Governance and Strategic Studies (RIGSS) in Phuentsholing of southern Bhutan on August 25.

In the case of the lifestyle diseases and longevity, Dr Ang pointed four most important components people need to observe in terms of food consumption; sugar, fructose and trans-fats. “Even if you can just remember the first three and work hard on them, it is a job done.”

He explained that sugar breeds obesity and diabetes, fructose generate obesity and trans-fats convert diabetes into chronic gender diseases. “But the problem lies with people as healing the body and maintaining right food habits towards longevity require discipline, determination, and knowledge.”

The 73-year-old doctor said that lifestyle diseases are modern diseases caused by one’s own choice.

He said that more hospitals are built in Singapore because of lifestyle diseases. “There cannot be enough hospitals to house people diagnosed with lifestyle diseases.” Dr Ang Poon Liat said that cancer is the number one killer in Singapore. “Bhutan does not have high numbers but it is something that comes eventually.”

He said that only 10 percent die of old age, while 90 percent die of chronic and gender diseases. “Parents may survive but the children may die.”

Dr Ang Poon Liat pointed a smarter government would go for the prevention. He, however, said that following the typical western mode of approach to health, which is to look after you when you are sick and dying is common. “So, it is called the ministry of ill health not the ministry of health.”

Dr Ang Poon Liat advised on the need to opt for the preventive phase. It would mean less expenditure for both government and public. “Both sides are happy and you get healthy longevity,” he said.

Dr Ang Poon Liat, who also authored some books, told the crowd at RIGSS that Bhutanese are lucky. Given the forest coverage, 100 percent clean sunlight, pollution free air to breath is plus points for healthy longevity. “Everything is in your favour,” he said. “Please use it.”

He said Bhutanese could live up to 100 years. “Mind and spirit were the ensuing dimensions of healthy longevity. Positivity produces hormones that keep the brain optimally functional.”

During the forum, Dr Ang Poon Liat said that if a person lives well and healthily for the first 50 years, the next 50 years is a gift. “If you mess up your 50 years, it is a struggle,” he said. “Longevity without good health is worthless.”

Meanwhile, the talk was participated by the first batch of Bhutan Foreign Service Program of RIGSS. There are 28 participants for the new program.

Ministers and other dignitaries also attended the 21st Friday Forum.

Copyright: Kuensel/ Asia News Network

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