This blog was created and for use by the Kepong CSCQ Practitioners as a virtual community centre. Comments concerning the Kepong Station can be posted here. Notices of whatever nature concerning Kepong Station will also be posted here as well. Your participation and feedback are welcome. Let us together strive for improvements of health both physically and mentally.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

A little bit of coffee and philosophy

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, wordlessly, he picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls.

He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.

The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar.

He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full.

They agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar.

Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with a infamous "yes."

The professor then produced two cups of coffee from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar, effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed.

"Now," said the professor, as the laughter subsided, "I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life. The golf balls are the important things. Your family, your children, your faith, your health, your friends, and your favourite passions. Things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full. The pebbles are the other things that matter. Your job, your house, and your car. The sand is everything else. The small stuff."

"If you put the sand into the jar first," he continued, "there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you. Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Play with your children. Take time to get medical checkups. Take your partner out to dinner.
Play another 18. There will always be time to clean the house and fix the disposal. Take care of the golf balls first, the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand."

One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the coffee represented.

The professor smiled. "I'm glad you asked. It just goes to show you that no matter how full your life may seem, there's always room for a couple of cups of coffee with a friend."

You like coffee? Below is a PPS file titled "coffee.pps". Click to download. File size = 627 kb.

Monday, October 30, 2006

The Secrets of Successful Aging (Part 2)

What Science Tells Us About Growing Older -- And Staying Healthy By TARA PARKER-POPE Staff Reporter of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL June 20, 2005

Part 2

How Stress Works

To understand why it's so important to learn to manage stress, you have to understand what happens inside your body when you experience stress. The body rapidly mobilizes energy, delivering glucose to your muscles. The heart rate, blood pressure and breathing rate increase so that more oxygen can be delivered more quickly throughout your body. Functions that aren't needed in an emergency -- such as digestion, sex drive and even your immune system -- are eventually suppressed. Meanwhile, stress hormones that help dull pain and sharpen your senses are released. Blood vessels constrict and clotting factors increase to slow bleeding in case you are wounded.

An animal fleeing a predator, a soldier at war or a mother fleeing a burning house with her child all benefit from the fact that the body, under stress, responds by giving your muscles, your heart and your lungs an added boost to help you flee or fight for your life. Ideally, this stress response is turned on for a short time, just long enough to get you out of danger.

The problem is, it doesn't take much to switch on the stress response. Worrying about a job deadline or fighting with your spouse can both trigger it. If you're good at coping with stress, then your stress response will eventually turn off.

But unremitting stress -- in a person who can't shed it -- leaves the stress response in the "on" position. All those changes that protect you in a moment of crisis suddenly turn on you. Now you're just a person with unregulated blood sugar, high blood pressure, blood clots, a depressed sex drive and an immune system buckling under all the strain.

It sounds a lot like getting old.

His name is Li Zhong-Er, 72 years old, from Hubei of China. Before he took up Qigong, he was terribly sick. He was fat, numb on the skin of the right leg and with serious stomach sicknesses. Owing to his fatness, he got slip-disc. He could not sit nor stand, could not eat by himself. He needed to be carried so as to go from one place to another.

Measuring Stress

Though many people consider stress an amorphous psychological concept, its cumulative physiological effect can actually be measured. A complex formula that involves blood pressure, cholesterol, the variability of a person's heart rate and stress-hormone levels (including cortisol, norepinephrine, epinephrine and DHEA-S), as well as a person's waist-to-hip ratio, all add up to something called the "allostatic load." In studies, a high allostatic load was highly predictive of mortality and signaled risk for heart disease, mental decline and other problems.

Unfortunately, there's no way for the average person to get a reading of his or her allostatic load. Scientists at Rockefeller University in New York, which has led research on the concept, have yet to find a corporate sponsor interested in transferring this important research tool so it can be used by patients and their doctors.

But even without a high-tech measurement of our stress burden, most people are well aware of the stress in their lives. We do know that poor, less-educated people tend to have a higher allostatic load than highly educated, wealthy ones. People who are sleep deprived or who don't exercise tend to have higher allostatic loads than those with good sleep and exercise habits. People who have strong social and family relationships tend to have a lower allostatic load than loners.

To get an idea of how workplace stress can have long-term effects on health and aging, consider the Whitehall studies, a series of studies of British civil-service workers while Margaret Thatcher was prime minister and her administration was pushing aggressively to privatize government functions. In one government department, scientists found notable increases in body-mass index, cholesterol, stroke incident and need for sleep among the workers there. The employees with the most authority and power posted the lowest blood-pressure rates, while low-level workers, who lacked power and feared most for their job security under privatization, posted the highest blood-pressure rates.

"If you feel you're in control, you do a lot better than if you lack control," says Rockefeller neuroendocrinologist Bruce McEwen, an expert on allostatic load and author of "The End of Stress as We Know It." He adds: "If you lack control, this leads to being stressed out."

Another study shows that chronic stress increased risk for catching a cold. One Carnegie Mellon University study surveyed 300 volunteers about stress and then injected them with a cold virus. The people who had reported little chronic stress didn't get sick -- their immune systems battled the virus. But volunteers who had reported chronic stress that lasted for a month or longer -- such as unemployment or family crisis -- fell ill.

And in a series of stress studies by German researchers, volunteers were asked to perform the stressful double whammy of public speaking while performing difficult math problems. Investigators took saliva samples each day to measure levels of the stress hormone cortisol.

Initially, the task caused everyone to show signs of stress. But most of the men began to relax by the second day and their stress hormones leveled off as well. But about one-third of the men, nervous about public speaking and plagued by low self-confidence, continued to post high cortisol levels. High cortisol levels have been linked with diabetes, heart disease and even obesity. be continued in Part 3

(from an e-mail we received)

Below is another downloadable PPS file. Click to download. File size = 1 mb.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

The Secrets of Successful Aging (Part 1)

What Science Tells Us About Growing Older -- And Staying Healthy By TARA PARKER-POPE Staff Reporter of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL June 20, 2005

Today, the average person in the U.S. lives for nearly 78 years. But what about those people who beat the average? Why do some men and women defy the chronological odds to live longer and in good health?

Increasingly, the scientific community is shifting its focus to this elite group, these "successful agers" who seem to be doing a better job of getting old than the rest of us.

And what they're finding isn't what you'd expect.

Some of the reasons people age well are obvious. For years we've been told that the best way to stay healthy is to eat the right foods, maintain a healthy weight, exercise -- and hope you have good genes. While all of that is true, a voluminous body of aging research shows that some of the most significant enemies of old age are far more insidious than a penchant for fried food or a couch-potato lifestyle. Instead, how well we age may be intrinsically tied to our most basic personality traits, the social relationships we have formed and -- perhaps most important -- our ability to cope with stress.

"We now know that aging is about a body that doesn't deal well with stress anymore," says Robert Sapolsky, a Stanford University neuroendocrinologist and a leading stress researcher.


Do you believe that the man in the picture is 72 years old? He is from Hubei of China and has retired. He practiced Soaring Crane Qigong since March, 1989.

Living to the Max

Scientists estimate that the maximum potential life span of the human body is about 120 years, give or take. They came to this conclusion after observing the oldest ages achieved by a variety of organisms, noting that aging, no matter what the species, seemed to follow a consistent mathematical formula. The maximum age achieved by any species appears to equal about six times the number of years from birth to biological maturity. So humans, who take about 20 years to reach maturity, have the potential to live six times as long as that -- or about 120 years. Notably, the oldest well-documented human age is 122. [aging art]

Genetics likely plays some part in the ability to reach an extreme old age, and scientists are on a heated quest to identify the so-called longevity genes. But genetics can only take you so far. Studies of Swedish twins who were raised apart showed that only about 30% of aging can be explained by genes. In other words, successful agers aren't still around simply by luck of the genetic draw. They have far more control over the aging process than once thought.

"One of the myths of aging is to choose your parents wisely," says John W. Rowe, who, before becoming chairman of Aetna Inc., served as director of the MacArthur Foundation Research on Successful Aging, one of the largest aging studies in the country. "People feel there is a genetic program they are playing out. But since only about one-third of aging is heritable, the rest is acquired -- that means you are responsible for your own old age."

So, how do you age successfully? Aging researchers are beginning to get some answers. Numerous studies of rats, monkeys, nuns, British government workers and centenarians have unlocked many of the secrets of successful aging.

Many of the answers were expected. People age better if they don't smoke, don't abuse alcohol, maintain a healthy weight and get regular exercise.

But one of the biggest culprits in unhealthy aging also gets the least respect from both the medical community and individuals: stress. Increasingly, researchers are viewing stress -- how much stress we face in a lifetime, and how well we cope with it -- as one of the most significant factors for predicting how well we age.

It may be hard to believe that stress, which most people view as an emotional state, can wreak such havoc on our physical well being. But aging studies consistently show that the healthiest agers are particularly adept at shedding stress. be continued in Part 2.

(from an e-mail we received)

Friday, October 27, 2006

IPOH TOUR - Further Details

Date: 3-12-2006 (Sunday) - a one day tour
Price per pax: RM138.00 (RM125.00 if there are 44 persons)

2 meals are included - lunch & dinner. Good food will be served for sure according to James Yap.

Sites: -
Cold & hot water river.
Pedestrian suspension bridge at Tapah.
A beautiful lake at Ipoh.
Boat ride (fees of RM4.00 not included) around the lake.
Witness the beautiful scenery known as "little Gui-Lin" - 小桂林 - 桂林山水甲天下。
Visit a limestone cave with more than 100 years history. Pray as you wish.
Shop for local Ipoh products, etc.

Do join in. the more the merrier.

For more details, contact Ah Sei (012-9878868 or 016-3600076)

Another downloadable PPS file named nocomment. File size = 1 mb. Click to download.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

BUBS - The 90/10 Principle

Author: Stephen Covey (Management Guru)

Discover the 90/10 Principle. It will change your life (at least the way you react to situations). What is this principle?

10% of life is made up of what happens to you. 90% of life is decided by how you react. What does this mean?

We really have no control over 10% of what happens to us. We cannot stop the car from breaking down. The plane will be late arriving, which throws our whole schedule off. A driver may cut us off in traffic. We have no control over this 10%. The other 90% is different. You determine the other 90%. How?

By your reaction, you cannot control a red light. But you can control your reaction. Don't let people fool you; YOU can control how you react. Let's use an example.

You are eating breakfast with your family. Your daughter knocks over a cup of coffee onto your business shirt. You have no control over what just what happened. What happens when the next will be determined by how you react? You curse. You harshly scold your daughter for knocking the cup over. She breaks down in tears. After scolding her, you turn to your spouse and criticize her for placing the cup too close to the edge of the table. A short verbal battle follows. You storm upstairs and change your shirt. Back downstairs, you find your daughter has been too busy crying to finish breakfast and get ready for school. She misses the bus. Your spouse must leave immediately for work. You rush to the car and drive your daughter to school. Because you are late, you drive 40 miles an hour in a 30 mph speed limit. After a 15-minute delay and throwing $60 traffic fine away, you arrive at school. Your daughter runs into the building without saying goodbye.

After arriving
at the office 20 minutes late, you find you forgot your briefcase. Your day has started terrible. As it continues, it seems to get worse and worse. You look forward to coming home, When you arrive home, you find small wedge in your relationship with your spouse and daughter.

Because of how you reacted in the morning. Why did you have a bad day?
A) Did the coffee cause it?
B) Did your daughter cause it?
C) Did the policeman cause it?
D) Did you cause it?

The answer is "D".

You had no control over what happened with the coffee. How you reacted in those 5 seconds is what caused your bad day.

Here is what could have and should have happened.

Coffee splashes over you. Your daughter is about to cry. You gently say, "Its ok honey, you just need to be more careful next time". Grabbing a towel you rush upstairs. After grabbing a new shirt and your briefcase, you come back down in time to look through the window and see your child getting on the bus. She turns and waves. You arrive 5 minutes early and cheerfully greet the staff. Your boss comments on how good the day you are having.

Notice the difference?

Two different scenarios. Both started the same. Both ended different. Why? Because of how you REACTED. You really do not have any control over 10% of what happens. The other 90% was determined by your reaction.

Here are some ways to apply the 90/10 principle. If someone says something negative about you, don't be a sponge. Let the attack roll off like water on glass. You don't have to let the negative comment affect you! React properly and it will not ruin your day. A wrong reaction could result in losing a friend/love one, being fired, getting stressed out etc.

How do you react if someone cuts you off in traffic?
Do you lose your temper?
Pound on the steering wheel? A friend of mine had the steering wheel fall off).
Do you curse?
Does your blood pressure skyrocket?
Do you try and bump them?
WHO CARES if you arrive ten seconds later at work? Why let the cars ruin your drive?

Remember the 90/10 principle, and do not worry about it.

You are told you lost your job. Why lose sleep and get irritated? It will work out. Use your worrying energy and time into finding another job.

The plane is late; it is going to mangle your schedule for the day. Why take out your frustration on the flight attendant? She has no control over what is going on. Use your time to study, get to know the other passenger. Why get stressed out? It will just make things worse. Now you know the 90-10 principle. Apply it and you will be amazed at the results. You will lose nothing if you try it.

The 90-10 principle is incredible. Very few know and apply this principle. The result? Millions of people are suffering from undeserved stress, trials, problems and heartache. There never seem to be a success in life.

Bad days follow bad days.

Terrible things seem to be constantly happening. There is constant stress, lack of joy, and broken relationships. Worry consumes time. Anger breaks friendships and life seems dreary and is not enjoyed to the fullest. Friends are lost. Life is a bore and often seems cruel. Does this describe you? If so, do not be discouraged.

You can be different!

Understand and apply the 90/10 principle.

It CAN change your life.........!!!!!!!

(from an e-mail we received)

Another downloadable file below. This PPS file is in Chinese. Click to download. File size = 191 kb.
Be Happy .pps

Sunday, October 22, 2006

More Birthday Celebration Photos for October 2006

You like playing computer game! If so, download the file below. Run it and play online. It can be interesting. You may love it. File size = 247 kb.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Early Death Comes From Drinking Distilled Water
Zoltan P. Rona MD MSc

During nearly 19 years of clinical practice I have had the opportunity to observe the health effects of drinking different types of water. Most of you would agree that drinking unfiltered tap water could be hazardous to your health because of things like





Many health fanatics, however, are often surprised to hear me say that

drinking distilled water on a regular, daily basis is potentially dangerous.

Paavo Airola wrote about the dangers of distilled water in the 1970's when it first became a fad with the health food crowd.

Distillation is the process in which water is boiled, evaporated and the vapour condensed. Distilled water is free of dissolved minerals and, because of this, has the special property of being able to actively absorb toxic substances from the body and eliminate them. Studies validate the benefits of drinking distilled water when one is seeking to cleanse or detoxify the system for short periods of time (a few weeks at a time).

Fasting using distilled water can be dangerous

because of the rapid loss of electrolytes (sodium, potassium, chloride) and trace minerals like magnesium, deficiencies of which can cause heart beat irregularities and high blood pressure. Cooking foods in distilled water pulls the minerals out of them and lowers their nutrient value.

Distilled water is an active absorber and when it comes into contact with air, it

absorbs carbon dioxide, making it acidic. The more distilled water a person drinks, the higher the body acidity becomes.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, "Distilled water, being essentially mineral-free, is very aggressive, in that it tends to dissolve substances with which it is in contact. Notably, carbon dioxide from the air is rapidly absorbed, making the water acidic and even more aggressive. Many metals are dissolved by distilled water."

The most toxic commercial beverages that people consume (i.e. cola beverages and other soft drinks) are made from distilled water. Studies have consistently shown that

heavy consumers of soft drinks (with or without sugar) spill huge amounts of calcium, magnesium and other trace minerals into the urine.

The more mineral loss, the

greater the risk for osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, hypothyroidism, coronary artery disease, high blood pressure and a long list of degenerative diseases generally associated with premature aging.

A growing number of health care practitioners and scientists from around the world have been advocating the theory that aging and disease is the direct result of the accumulation of acid waste products in the body.

There is a great deal of scientific documentation that supports such a theory. A poor diet may be partially to blame for the waste accumulation.

These and other junk foods can cause the body to become more acidic:




fried foods

soft drinks

processed foods

white flour products

dairy products

Stress, whether mental or physical can lead to acid deposits in the body.

There is a correlation between the consumption of soft water (distilled water is extremely soft) and the incidence of cardiovascular disease. Cells, tissues and organs do not like to be dipped in acid and will do anything to buffer this acidity including the removal of minerals from the skeleton and the manufacture of bicarbonate in the blood.

The longer one drinks distilled water, the more likely the development of mineral deficiencies and an acid state.

I have done well over 3000 mineral evaluations using a combination of blood, urine and hair tests in my practice. Almost without exception, people who consume distilled water exclusively, eventually develop multiple mineral deficiencies.

Those who supplement their distilled water intake with trace minerals are not as deficient but still not as adequately nourished in minerals as their non-distilled water drinking counterparts even after several years of mineral supplementation.

The ideal water for the human body should be

slightly alkaline and this requires the presence of minerals like



Distilled water tends to be acidic and can only be recommended as a way of drawing poisons out of the body. Once this is accomplished, the continued drinking of distilled water is a bad idea.

Water filtered through reverse osmosis tends to be neutral and is acceptable for regular use provided minerals are supplemented.

Water filtered through a solid charcoal filter is slightly alkaline. Ozonation of this charcoal filtered water is ideal for daily drinking. Longevity is associated with the regular consumption of hard water (high in minerals). Disease and early death is more likely to be seen with the long term drinking of distilled water.

Avoid it except in special circumstances.

Zoltan P. Rona MD MSc


Airola, P. 1974. How To Get Well. Phoenix, AZ: Health Plus Publishers.

Baroody, Dr. Theodore A. Jr. Alkalinize or Die. California:Portal Books, 1995.

Haas, Elson M. Staying Healthy with Nutrition. The Complete Guide to Diet & Nutritional Medicine. Berkeley, California:Celestial Arts, 1992; p. 22.

Rona, Zoltan P. and Martin, Jeanne Marie. Return to the Joy of Health, Vancouver: Alive Books, 1995.

Rona, Zoltan P. Childhood Illness and The Allergy Connection. Rocklin, California:Prima Books, 1996.

(from an e-mail we received)

Some Photos of the Mid-Autumn Festival Celebration on 1-10-2006
(Part 11 - Lucky Draws & Others)

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Birthday Celebration for October 2006

The birthday celebration for October 2006 was held on 16-10-2006 (Monday).

This birthday cake was in the shape of a heart. It was made personally by our station master, SK Chan for Catherine Wong whose birthday falls in October. The heart means wholehearted love. In Chinese, it is:-
"一心一意". Very touching indeed.
This love of SK to Catherine will for sure last eternally till

Catherine Wong with the lovely birthday cake presented by SK Chan.

Catherine Wong & SK Chan - a very loving couple

James Yap & KS Pang

YK Yap & CT Tong - another very loving couple

Catherine Wong, BC Ker & Irene Ng

Another downloadable file below. Click on it to download. File size = 78 kb.


你聽過北極熊的故事嗎?在北極圈裡,牠可是沒有什麼天敵的,但是聰明的愛斯基摩人,卻可不費吹灰之力逮捕牠 ……



牠的鼻子特靈,可以在好幾公里之外就嗅到血腥味,此時牠一定聞到愛斯基摩人丟在雪地上的冰棒,於是迅速趕來覓食,開始舔起血冰棒,舔著舔著,舌頭漸漸麻痺,但是還是不願意放棄這樣的美食,忽然血的味道變好了── 那是更新鮮的血,溫熱的血, 於是牠越舔越起勁──原來那是牠自己的血 ──




即使他們有了時間,他們很有可能也不知道如何花這些錢 ……


有人在他們的事業高峰時,忽然心肌梗塞,失去生命,有人忽然中風,失去行動能力健康,有人有一天忽然發現家人全都離他而去 ……

美國一個週刊,做過一個調查,針對世界百大企業的退休 CEO,請他們填一份問卷,其中前十大企業的老闆,對其中一個問題都有相同的答覆,這個問題是:如果人生可以重新來過,你會希望什麼是你絕對不能錯過的?


讓我們現在就想清楚:你是那隻大北極熊嗎?你正在吸自己的血,享受幸福的感覺嗎? 人生只有一次,過去了就不再回來,請不要當大北極熊,以生命為代價的事業,很可能最後是賺得全世界,卻失去了你最寶貴的生命!

(from an e-mail we received)

Monday, October 16, 2006

Some Photos of the Mid-Autumn Festival Celebration on 1-10-2006
(Part 10 - Playing Games)

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Some Photos of the Mid-Autumn Festival Celebration on 1-10-2006
(Part 9 - Dancing Time)

Look! Who was dancing and dancing with whom?

Dancing Queens

Great dancers. Simply elegant.

As usual, we append below a downloadable PPS file for your viewing pleasure. Click to download. File size = 378 kb.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Some Photos of the Mid-Autumn Festival Celebration on 1-10-2006
(Part 8 - Makan Time III)

The TWINS of Kepong Station

CK Yap & Family