What to eat to support probiotics in your gut

Everyone knows the health benefits of probiotics, the beneficial bacteria that promotes good health. Many people ensure adequate probiotic intake either through probiotic foods or through supplementation. But how can we help our friendly bacteria flourish in our gut? It turns out that eating the right foods can feed the good bacteria in our gutContinue reading “What to eat to support probiotics in your gut”

Hidden health risk of junk food snacks

Hong Kong’s Consumer Council revealed yesterday that eating too many chips and French fries may carry hidden health risks.  The watchdog’s study tested 39 samples of pre-packaged and freshly fried potato snacks from restaurants and found that 30% of the 39 samples contained levels of a cancer-causing agent called acrylamide which exceeded EU standards. OutContinue reading “Hidden health risk of junk food snacks”

Abdominal pain and diarrhea? Bloated or excessive burping? You may have SIBO.

What is SIBO? Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) is a condition affecting the small intestine. SIBO is caused when bacteria that normally grow in other parts of the gut start growing in the small intestine. It typically causes pain and diarrhea. Experts estimate that up to 80% of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) sufferers may actually have SIBO. SomeContinue reading “Abdominal pain and diarrhea? Bloated or excessive burping? You may have SIBO.”

COVID-19: practical ways to cope with stress and anxiety

Hong Kong endured nearly 8 months of social unrest before COVID-19 hit the city in January 2020. Citizens were already facing a major mental health burden, with the medical journal The Lancet reporting that almost 2 million people in Hong Kong- about 1 in 3 adults in the city- experienced symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)Continue reading “COVID-19: practical ways to cope with stress and anxiety”

2020’s “Dirty Dozen”: What are the most pesticide-laden foods?

The 2020 Dirty Dozen™ List is out! Here is the list of foods that contain the most pesticide residues: Strawberries Spinach Kale Nectarines Apples Grapes Peaches Cherries Pears Tomatoes Celery Potatoes The list is released each year by the Environmental Working Group (EWG), a nonprofit consumer advocacy organization which uses more than 40,000 produce samples testedContinue reading “2020’s “Dirty Dozen”: What are the most pesticide-laden foods?”

Stressed? Anxious? Spend time in nature.

More and more research is showing a strong connection between time spent in nature and reduced stress, anxiety and depression. Not only that, but individuals who are more connected to nature tend to be happier in general. Interacting with nature offers a variety of therapeutic benefits. For instance, calming nature sounds and even outdoor silence canContinue reading “Stressed? Anxious? Spend time in nature.”

Does gut bacteria affect your happiness?

The gut microbiome (i.e. the bacteria in our gut) has been getting lots of attention recently. Scientists are becoming increasingly aware of the key role these trillions of microbes play in health and disease. Not only do these gut microbes within us help us digest food and metabolize drugs but over the past decade, researchContinue reading “Does gut bacteria affect your happiness?”

Processed foods are bad for our health. But, what exactly is a processed food?

Many studies confirm that eating processed foods can lead to cancer, heart disease, obesity and well, early death.  But, what exactly is a processed food? Using a four-tiered system called NOVA, nutrition experts and scientists classify everything we eat into one of four categories: unprocessed or minimally processed, processed culinary ingredients, processed foods and ultra-processedContinue reading “Processed foods are bad for our health. But, what exactly is a processed food?”

Can cleanliness increase your risk of developing allergies and asthma?

How can being too clean make us sick? Well, it turns out that excessive cleanliness or a lack of exposure to bacteria, viruses and allergens prevents the normal development of the immune system, which eventually increases the chance of disorders within this system down the road. This is called the hygiene hypothesis, and it explains why allergyContinue reading “Can cleanliness increase your risk of developing allergies and asthma?”

Reduce anxiety, naturally

Government statistics show that over 13% of people in Hong Kong aged 16 to 75 have common mental disorders such as anxiety and depression. According to a 2015 study, 27.8% of Hong Kong’s primary school children have anxiety symptoms so severe that professional help is warranted (Click here to read more on stress and anxiety inContinue reading “Reduce anxiety, naturally”