Thursday, December 23, 2010


It has been man's dream since ancient times, to know the secret of longevity. Many of us wish to live longer and some of us wish to live better. Both are difficult to fulfill. Perhaps the first is easier, especially with the latest study on diet and longer life, published in the Journal of Dietetic Association.
In that study, the American group studied 2,500 adults aged 70-79 years, and divided them into 6 groups, each with a different diet, varying from low fat, green veges, fruits diet, to high fats, milk, cheese and creamy foods. After ten years of followup, they found that the group that was on low fat, green veges and fruits ( veges and fruits, 5 servings a day ), live longer. For every 100 in the group, 12 lived longer then those on the other diet. I suppose 12% improvement, over a 10 year period is good. I only wonder if they are living longer and living well.
I was looking for an explanation. Perhaps, those who were on the high fats, creamy diet, were obesed and so suffer all the chronic lifestyle disease of obesity, including hypertension, diabetes, heart disease and strokes. I am sure ( based on medical evidence ) that those on low fat, green veges and fruits diet, will be leaner, have less hypertension and less diabetes. So also less heart disease and strokes.
I do spend some time with my patient after each consultation, to teach them a healthy diet. I found that most Chinese adults like the " tua pek kong" look, and do not like the lean and hungry look. They feel that the lack of the " middle kingdom " is an insult to them and their family. It would take quite awhile, I think, to re-educate them.
Of course, with so many fast food joints and their adverts targetting at all the adolescent and teenagers, my effort gets so much tougher.
Well, to live longer and better, eat less fats, 5 servings of fruits daily and much green veges. Some white meat would be great.


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