Body Mass Index (BMI)
Body Mass Index (BMI) is a measurement method used
by healthcare professionals and nutritionists to assess
our health condition. The higher the BMI, the higher the
risk of experiencing obesity-related health problems (eg.
Type-2 diabetes, high blood pressure, osteoarthritis and
certain types of cancer).
The BMI calculation formula is: your weight
in kilograms, divided by your height in metres squared.
BMI = current weight (kg) / [height (m) x
Weight = 80kg
Height = 1.7m
Therefore your BMI is : 80 / (1.7 x 1.7) =
The ideal BMI is 22.
The normal range is from 19 to 24.
The overweight range is from 25 to 29.
Obesity I range is from 30 to 34.
Obesity II range is from 35 to 40.
So a BMI of 27.68 is considered overweight.
Our brains (and central nervous system) run on glucose –
the fuel we need for all activities. If we finish dinner
at 8pm, go to bed at 11pm, and wake up at 8am, our bodies
would have gone for 12 hours without food. By this time,
all the food from dinner would have been digested. Our brains
would have to work on stored fuel in our system to function.
That is why breakfast is a very important meal to replenish
the fuel for our brains and all our bodily systems to function
In the US, studies have shown a link between
children who participate in the nationwide School Breakfast
Program with improved academic performance and better psychological
behaviour. Breakfast has been proven to improve concentration,
problem solving ability, mental performance, mood and memory.
Children who participated in this program
were less emotionally vulnerable than those who skipped
breakfast, and they were also less likely to give in to
junk food cravings later in the day. Those who regularly
ate breakfast also performed better in school, have better
attendance record, and exhibit lesser disruptive behaviour
(eg. fighting, stealing, listening to their teachers).
Now that you now the importance of having
breakfast, here are some great breakfast
recipes to kick start your day.
Category: Food / Nutrition
The Chinese are famous for consuming a mind-boggling variety
of wildlife and plants. The Chinese maintain that the nest
from the swiftlet possesses healing and health properties.
Bird’s nest is from the swiftlet is woven with thin
strands of the swiftlet’s saliva. This bird’s
nest is made into a soup and is classified as a cooling
food (yin). Expectant mothers consume it to strengthen their
constitution, and to have a baby with fine complexion. It
is also believed to be able to cleanse the blood, and maintain
Chemical analysis by the Chinese University
(in Hong Kong), found that the nest is composed of 65 per
cent water soluble glycol-protein that is easily absorbed
by the human body. Bird’s nest also contains traces
of fat, carbohydrates and minerals
Bird’s nest has been favoured by the
Chinese since the Tang Dynasty 1,500 years ago and is still
very popular today. Bird’s nest is harvested from
a cave nest or house nest. In Asia, several countries export
bird’s nest (incl. Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, India,
Sri Lanka, and Malaysia). Bird’s nest from Malaysia
is considered one of the finest in the world.
From the wild, these nests are extracted from
limestone caves on high cliffs facing the sea in Borneo
From farms, the nests are taken from swiftlet
colonies cultivated in “birdhouses”. Many old
buildings in the Penang island of Malaysia and Perak (a
state in Malaysia well known for its limestone hills).
The bigger the nest, the higher the value.
An average nest weighs between 10 – 12 gm. A high
quality nest has the shape approximately like a man’s
cupped palm, and resemble a cobra’s open hood.
Bird’s nest is now sold in ready-to-drink
bottles in Chinese supermarkets and Chinese medicine pharmacies.
Preparation of raw bird’s nest
The raw nest is soaked in water overnight. The next day,
the whole content (including the water, which is kept as
stock) is stewed over low heat or left in a slow cooker
for 3 hours. After that, it it is ready to eat.
The bird’s nest itself is quite bland.
To enhance the taste, Chinese rock sugar (you can substitute
this with raw sugar) and even ginseng can be added during
the cooking process. If you prefer not to use any sugars,
for taste you may add some honey after it is cooked.
Category: Plant / vegetable
Broccolli is a good source of many important vitamins and
minerals. Would you believe that gram for gram, broccoli
contains double the amount of vitamin
C as oranges. Broccoli also contains vitamin
Other beneficial nutrients include phytochemicals, that
may help to prevent certain diseases.
Broccolli’s benefits include:
- Strengthens bones – The calcium,
in broccoli may help to keep bones strong. Broccolli is
one of the few non-dairy foods that contain loads of calcium,
which our bodies can absorb easily.
- Protects eyesight/vision – Broccolli contains
contains lutein and zeaxanthin. Carotenoids that may prevent
cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.
- Fights cancer – Broccolli contains indole-3-carbinol,
which researchers in the University of California claim
that it can stop the growth of cancer cells.
- Protects heart – Due to broccolli’s well-rounded
nutrient content (vitamin
and flavanoids), broccoli is able to protect heart blood
and arteries from clotting, oxidation and inflammation.