Tuesday, July 26, 2016

50 Food Myths Busted: Setting the record straight on popular beliefs about foo

May 4, 2016, 12:44 pm SGT

Experts clear the air on widely held misconceptions and beliefs about food. They address questions on myths on the daily diet, pregnancy and babies, fuelling workouts, sickness and what we drink.
Poon Chian Hui
Assistant News Editor

Ng Wan Ching
Mind & Body Editor

Joyce Teo

Joan Chew

This story was first published in November, 2015 in an e-book titled 50 Food Myths Busted, in The Straits Times Star E-books app. In the book, experts clear the air on widely held misconceptions and beliefs about food. They address questions on myths on the daily diet, pregnancy and babies, fuelling workouts, sickness and what we drink. The book was conceptualised and written by the team at Mind & Body, the weekly health features section in The Straits Times.
Preface by Poon Chian Hui, editor, Mind & Body


Eat this, not that. People have plenty of beliefs about food – even more so when it comes to their health.

At Mind & Body, a health features section of The Straits Times, we get questions from readers about nutrition, dietary guidelines and even warnings about certain food items.

But the answers aren’t always clear-cut. Studies may contradict each other, and experts can have different opinions.

The Mind & Body team rounded up 50 confounding food myths and asked doctors and dietitians islandwide to clear the air, once and for all.

You will also find handy tips on how best to navigate each situation.

Should you always choose fresh produce over frozen food? Does eating before exercise give you cramps or stitches? And will consuming more fibre help to ease constipation?

Read on to find out – the answers may surprise you. 

Monday, July 25, 2016

Same old conspiracy theory from Indonesia

[Indonesia has been claiming for many years that many of their rich citizens have fled their country with the ill-gotten gains to seek haven in Singapore. And that Singapore has benefited from these wealthy crooks who invest in Singapore (or park their loot in Singapore Banks), and Singapore has grown so fast because of these money.

This is how the Indonesian government consoles itself for the success of Singapore, while Indonesia still has to resort to destroying their natural heritage to simply make a living.

And this urban legend/conspiracy theory will refuse to die. So here is the latest episode.]

Saturday, July 23, 2016

'You can disagree with us' [Michelin Guide Launched in Singapore]

Jul 23, 2016,

Wong Ah Yoke
Food Critic


In an interview right after the Singapore Michelin Guide was launched on Thursday night, Mr Michael Ellis, the international director of Michelin Guides, struggled to explain how Shoukouwa, a Japanese restaurant that officially opened only in May, got into the guide with two stars.

Michelin inspectors, he said, completed their tastings for the inaugural guide at the end of the same month.

He also said that different - "at least three or four" - inspectors, none of whom are from Singapore, had to go to a restaurant separately before awarding stars.

That would mean the inspectors visited Shoukouwa, which soft-opened very quietly in late March at One Fullerton, within the first weeks of its opening.

"It's probably the Japanese network. We sent a number of Japanese inspectors here to test the Japanese restaurants," Mr Ellis, 58, said. "It's the grapevine, chefs talk among themselves."

But he admitted that he was unsure of the timeline of the inspectors' visits to the restaurant.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

South China Sea: The French Are Coming

France, also an Indo-Pacific nation, has its own stake in the South China Sea.

By Yo-Jung Chen
July 14, 2016

China’s aggressive territorial push in the South China Sea has resulted in turning this busy international trade route into one of the most volatile spots in the world.

The U.S.-led international efforts to defend the freedom of navigation guaranteed by the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), aiming at preventing the entire South China Sea from becoming an exclusive Chinese lake, has just received a powerful boost in the form of the July 12 ruling of The Hague-based UN Permanent Court of Arbitration. Much to China’s anger, most of its sovereignty claims over the South China Sea are rejected in this ruling.

To the surprise of many, a seemingly unrelated European power, France, has announced its intention of coordinating the navies of fellow European Union nations to conduct Freedom of Navigation Operations or FONOPs in South China Sea. On June 5, at the Shangri-la Dialogue in Singapore, French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian mentioned this initiative for joint EU patrols of “the maritime areas of Asia” and for a “regular and visible presence there.”


The four cryptic words Donald Trump can’t stop saying

By Max Ehrenfreund

June 13

Washington Post

A day after 49 people were killed in the worst mass shooting in U.S. history, Donald Trump seemed to imply that President Obama might have been connected, in some way, with the attack.

"Look, we're led by a man that either is not tough, not smart or he's got something else in mind," the presumptive Republican nominee told Fox & Friends Monday morning.

Earlier in the interview, when asked why he called for Obama's resignation, Trump said, "He doesn't get it or he gets it better than anybody understands. It's one or the other."

Also during that interview, Trump repeated a four-word phrase that has come to define his conspiratorial campaign almost as much as his official slogan, "Make America Great Again."

"There's something going on," Trump said. "It's inconceivable. There's something going on."

Why do people hate people who defend Singapore?

And by "people" I mean "Singaporeans". 

And by "Singaporeans", I mean small-minded, pretentious, ideologues full of their own sense of superiority who happened to be Singapore Citizens.

First, let's hear what Theodore has to say. Then note his parting note at the end.

But before I forget, thank you Mr Shawcross for your sharing. I agree with you, Singapore is an amazing country. Not perfect, but it has got most of the things right. 

And the things that are "wrong" about Singapore, most of them are "First World Problems". 

Like not being able to get Pokemon Go!


Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Arabisation of Islam in Asia: A clash within civilisation

Baladas Ghoshal
For The Straits Times

JUL 19, 2016

The spate of terrorist attacks and the attendant violence witnessed in the last couple of months, including the recent attacks in Dhaka, Kishoreganj and Ektarpur in Bangladesh, and Nice in France, brings home the truth that something perverse is happening within Islam and Muslims alone can fight that scourge.

Analysts attribute the growth of Islamist radicalism to Muslim grievances about their culture and way of life not being given what they consider their rightful place in their own societies; transnational links with organisations like Al-Qaeda and now an even more dangerous phenomenon called the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria or Daesh; hostility towards the policies of the West, in particular the United States and its support of Israel's policies towards the Palestinians, the occupation of Iraq and now intervention in Syria; and opposition to crackdowns on domestic militancy like in Bangladesh.

These factors have, undoubtedly, contributed to a sense of growing alienation and feeling of victimisation and oppression among certain Muslim groups, and to an attempt to redress their grievances and frustrations through violence and terror.

More importantly, a fundamental transformation is taking place within the Muslim community all over the world - an identity formation based on a world view taken from early Quranic precepts and a code of conduct resembling a way of life that was prevalent in the Arab world in the mediaeval period during the formative stage of Islam.