Thursday, August 30, 2012

How am I doing?

How am I been doing?  I have been asked this question time and time again. It is now like a greeting, matter of fact question or worse still a salutation.  I'll let my recent photos answer the question.

I do a lot of this in my neighbourhood

Weekends on this

Monday and Wednesday mornings

Sweat on this

To get this satisfaction

Nothing beats this moment

Chill out with the gang

To celebrate a new year younger

 To keep the mind active and crazy with my Macbook Air

To listen to my Oncologist

To have hope to live another year to be with you.

Take care all
Allen Lai

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Food, More food

Whilst on the subject of foods, you may want to visit the world's most healtiest food website here.

These foods are selected for its nutrients, availability, affordability, taste, familiarity and wholesomeness.

Also find out why your favourite food are not listed here. It is most likely that your favourite food does not meet the above criteria.

Details and descriptions of the food are very well documented, organised and presented.

Enjoy your meal

Allen Lai

Proven Cancer Prevention Foods

Eat colourful fruits and vegies 

Time and again I have been asked What are the best foods to eat to fight Cancer. My truthful answer had always been " Ayoh, Lets see erm...."

So I will post here again an extract from Cancer Battlefield Website.

Cancer is a genetic disease. Generally, this is how most people think. If your dad had it so would you. However, scientific research doesn’t support this way of thinking. Heredity doesn’t necessary give you an ill fated road map to your death bed. Your genes aren’t the most critical factor but rather, what you eat! Your genes would be influenced by what goes through your mouth. However, eating habit are the most important factor.
Here’s good news if you’re thinking just how you’d prevent cancer. The National Cancer Institute promotes five important foods to prevent cancer.


broccoli, cauliflower, onion, garlic, carrot, sweet potato, spinach, beans, avocado, lettuce, and asparagus – are some you should include in your every day meals. Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower and kale plus tomatoes are loaded with potent phytochemicals and antioxidants. They reduce your risk of prostate and other types of cancer.


Fruit isn’t difficult to eat. Most of us love fruits. Eat fresh organically grown fruits raw. If juiced, consume the pulp as well to get the most benefits. Luscious red grapesstrawberries, raspberries, blueberries are brimming with antioxidants that fight cancer. Fruits prevent the absorption of cancer causing nitrosamines from processed food and from soil chemicals. The deeper the color of berries the richer in antioxidants and anti-carcinogenic phytochemicals.


Cold water fish are the one we look for. Fish oils protect you from prostate and colon cancer. Deep ocean fishes such as Nordic wild fishes are stuffed with omega 3 fatty acids. These are essential fatty acids that prevent initiation of breast cancer. Fish oils works by decreasing bad cholesterol that sets off inflammation- a pathway to cancer growth.


Teas – specifically green tea – are loaded with anti-cancer chemicals. While vegetables and fruits provide essential nutrients, green tea is the richest in antioxidants. Drinking at least three cups of tea can protect you from a variety of cancer growths. They halt the transformation of normal cells into cancerous cells.

Soy products

Protein-rich soy is packed with phytochemicals responsible for the prevention of breast cancer. Drink your soy milk, tofu, granules or pulse and gain the benefits. But avoid processed soy.

Bottom line

Wiliam Li said that mother nature have laced plants with weapons to fight cancer. If you’d ask again, what can I do to prevent cancer? Consume five to ten servings of veggies and fruits daily, drink your soy and tea plus enjoy your salmon steak. 
Allen Lai

Anti-Angiogenesis Food

Angiogenesis, the growth of new blood vessels in the body, has been identified as the common denominator in many diseases, says Dr. Li. The number of blood vessels in our bodies needs to stay balanced to keep our defense systems strong; we don’t want too many or too few. Too few means wounds won’t heal, and we won't be protected against serious medical conditions, such as heart attacks. But if we have too many, the abundance of blood vessels can feed cancer cells that already exist in our bodies, causing tumors to grow.

Studies have shown that 40 percent of women between 40 to 50 years old have microscopic cancers in their breasts, and 50 percent of men in their 50s and 60s have microscopic cancers in their prostates. By the time we're in our 70s, almost 100 percent of us will have microscopic cancers in our thyroid glands. The good news: Most of them are harmless. Our bodies have “anti-angiogenesis” defense systems, which stop blood vessels from harboring these cancers.

And while we can’t change our genetics or our family history, we can change our diet. Certain foods contain naturally-occurring substances that are "anti-angiogenic" -- meaning they starve cancer cells.

 Here are his top 4:

1. Squid

The active ingredient in this powerful seafood is omega-3 fatty acid. It's Mother Nature’s fat, and is protective against breast cancer and heart disease. The best way to eat squid is to cut it into rings and saute it in garlic and olive oil. The garlic contains alliin, which is also anti-angiogenic, while olive oil contains cancer-starving polyphenols. A study of 35,000 women found that just 3 ounces of squid per day could reduce the risk of breast cancer by 26 percent.

2. Tomatoes

If you eat a tomato raw, the active ingredients (lycopene, beta-cryptozanthin, and rutin) will be hard for your body to absorb. Instead, cook tomatoes to 190 degrees. Try heating San Marzano tomatoes (they contain the highest amount of lycopene) in olive oil for 20 minutes to reach the desired temperature. The cooking also changes their chemical structure so the nutrients are easier to absorb. A study, which followed 70,000 men for 20 years, found that eating 2 to 3 cups of cooked tomatoes per week can reduce the risk of prostate cancer by 40 to 50 percent.

3. Lentils

Incorporate healthy lentils into your diet with salads and pasta dishes. This potent bean contains kaempferol, which helps restore cells in the body, and fights the blood vessels that can lead to cancer cells. A Nurses' Health study, which followed more than 34,000 women over a 30-year period, found that eating 1/2 cup of cooked lentils four times a week can reduce the risk of colon polyps (precancers in the colon) by 33 percent.

4. Tangerine Juice

Drinking 2 cups of freshly squeezed citrus juice a day reduces the risk of esophageal cancer by 42 percent, according to a NIH-AARP Diet and Health study of 490,000 people. Orange and grapefruit juice also contain the same potent antioxidants -- hesperidin and naringenin.

Curtesy of The Martha  Stewart Show



One of the most important and vital understanding of cancer growth mechanism is Angiogenesis. It is this very mechanism that the body feeds cancer cells which invariably causes Metastasis; allowing cancer cells to spread to other parts of the body. Thanks to The Angiogenesis Foundation that more studies and researches are being undertaken to mitigate and arrest Metastasis. If we want to fight off Metastasis we should first understand the underlining factors in Angiogenesis.

Below are extracts from the Foundation.

1. How the body controls Angiogenesis

Angiogenesis (angio'gen'esis) -- the growth of new blood vessels -- is an important natural process occurring in the body, both in health and in disease. 

Angiogenesis occurs in the healthy body for healing wounds and for restoring blood flow to tissues after injury or insult. In females, angiogenesis also occurs during the monthly reproductive cycle (to rebuild the uterus lining, to mature the egg during ovulation) and during pregnancy (to build the placenta, the circulation between mother and fetus).
The healthy body controls angiogenesis through a series of "on" and "off" switches:
The main "on" switches are known as angiogenesis-stimulating growth factors

The main "off switches" are known as angiogenesis inhibitors
When angiogenic growth factors are produced in excess of angiogenesis inhibitors, the balance is tipped in favor of blood vessel growth. When inhibitors are present in excess of stimulators, angiogenesis is stopped. The normal, healthy body maintains a perfect balance of angiogenesis modulators. In general, angiogenesis is "turned off" by the production of more inhibitors than stimulators.

2. The Angiogenesis Process: How Do New Blood Vessels Grow?
The process of angiogenesis occurs as an orderly series of events:

Diseased or injured tissues produce and release angiogenic growth factors (proteins) that diffuse into the nearby tissues.
The angiogenic growth factors bind to specific receptors located on the endothelial cells (EC) of nearby preexisting blood vessels.
Once growth factors bind to their receptors, the endothelial cells become activated. Signals are sent from the cell's surface to the nucleus.
The endothelial cell's machinery begins to produce new molecules including enzymes. These enzymes dissolve tiny holes in the sheath-like covering (basement membrane) surrounding all existing blood vessels.
The endothelial cells begin to divide (proliferate) and migrate out through the dissolved holes of the existing vessel towards the diseased tissue (tumor).
Specialized molecules called adhesion molecules called integrins (avb3, avb5) serve as grappling hooks to help pull the sprouting new blood vessel sprout forward.
Additional enzymes (matrix metalloproteinases, or MMP) are produced to dissolve the tissue in front of the sprouting vessel tip in order to accommodate it. As the vessel extends, the tissue is remolded around the vessel.
Sprouting endothelial cells roll up to form a blood vessel tube.
Individual blood vessel tubes connect to form blood vessel loops that can circulate blood.
Finally, newly formed blood vessel tubes are stabilized by specialized muscle cells (smooth muscle cells, pericytes) that provide structural support. Blood flow then begins.

3. Excessive angiogenesis:
Occurs in diseases such as cancer, diabetic blindness, age-related macular degeneration, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, and more than 70 other conditions.
In these conditions, new blood vessels feed diseased tissues, destroy normal tissues, and in the case of cancer, the new vessels allow tumor cells to escape into the circulation and lodge in other organs (tumor metastases).
Excessive angiogenesis occurs when diseased cells produce abnormal amounts of angiogenic growth factors, overwhelming the effects of natural angiogenesis inhibitors.
Antiangiogenic therapies, aimed at halting new blood vessel growth, are used to treat these conditions.

4. Known Angiogenic Growth Factors

Fibroblast growth factors: acidic (aFGF) and basic (bFGF)
Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF)
Hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) /scatter factor (SF)
Interleukin-8 (IL-8)
Placental growth factor
Platelet-derived endothelial cell growth factor (PD-ECGF)
Platelet-derived growth factor-BB (PDGF-BB)
Pleiotrophin (PTN)
Transforming growth factor-alpha (TGF-alpha)
Transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta)
Tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha)
Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)/vascular permeability factor (VPF)

5. Known Angiogenesis Inhibitors

Angiostatin (plasminogen fragment)
Antiangiogenic antithrombin III
Cartilage-derived inhibitor (CDI)
CD59 complement fragment
Endostatin (collagen XVIII fragment)
Fibronectin fragment
Fibronectin fragment (Anastellin)
Heparin hexasaccharide fragment
Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG)
Interferon alpha/beta/gamma
Interferon inducible protein (IP-10)
Kringle 5 (plasminogen fragment)
Metalloproteinase inhibitors (TIMPs)
Pigment epithelium derived factor (PEDF)
Placental ribonuclease inhibitor
Plasminogen activator inhibitor
Platelet factor-4 (PF4)
Prolactin 16kD fragment
Proliferin-related protein (PRP)
Prothrombin kringle 2
Soluble Fms-like tyrosine kinase-1 (S-Flt-1)
Targeting fibronectin-binding integrins
Thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1) and -2
Transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-b)
Troponin I
Vasostatin (calreticulin fragment)

Visit the foundation’s website here

Take care
Allen Lai

Prostrate Cancer Support Group Meeting

Mr Das (left)

The NCSM Prostrate Cancer Support Group held its bi-monthly meeting on Thursday 16 August 2012.  
Attendance was fair and we had a new member joining the group.

The group's founding chairman Mr Das discussed two important books that all members should read, namely, After Cancer by Dr Arnold Melman and Anti Cancer - A new way of life by Dr David Servan-Schreiber . These two books were recommended as mandatory reading materials.


The main topic discussed in the meeting was Understanding Cancers that metastasize to the bones. NCSM had just presented a talk by by Consultant Oncologist Dr Mohammad Azrif last weekend which covered bone cancers; its types, symptoms and treatments.

Two members who are experiencing bone cancer metastasized from prostrate cancer were present during the meeting. Many new drugs and procedures were discussed and shared. One of the members shared his personal experience with pain and the protocol/pain killers that he had being prescribed.

Mr Subbiah and Mr Wong

Mr Das also gave a informative handout of common cancers that metastases to the bones, its symptoms and treatments to all present. Treatments include Radiotherapy, Radiopharmaceuticals, Abalation, Bisphosphonates, Denosumab, Surgery and Injections of bone cements. These treatments can be easily read in the internet.

Sabah Snake Grass was also discussed and explained in depth.

Ms Adelene from NCSM later invited us to register and join the Relay For Life event to be held in October 2012.

Take care
Allen Lai

Monday, August 13, 2012

Bone Cancer

Dr Mohammad Azrif

Last Saturday 11 August 2012. The National Cancer Society Malaysia (NCSM) invited us to a talk on bone cancer by Consultant Clinical Oncologist Dr Mohammad Azrif from the Prince Court Medical Center, Kuala Lumpur. We were also given an insight to Nuclear Medicine and types of scannings by Consultant Radiologist Dr Sulaiman Tamanang from Nuclear Medical Centre, NCSM.

The presentation by Dr Azrif covered the facts and figures behind bone cancer, the role of nuclear medicine in bone cancer detection and its treatments available.

Section of the participants

Treatments offered 

Combined Pet and CT scanning for better images

Protect the terrain

There are two types of bone cancer, Primary and Secondary. Treatments are totally different for both types of bone cancer. Primary bone cancer is fairly rare in Malaysia, but Secondary bone cancer is on the increase in Malaysia. Primary bone cancer means that the cancer originate from the bones and Secondary bone cancer means cancer had metastasis from its original organ/host.

Secondary bone cancer stems from several types of cancer, mainly from thyroid cancer, breast cancer, lung cancer, prostrate cancer, colon cancer and kidney cancer. Most Secondary bone cancers are found in the spinal cord and long bones. Pain is usually dull but will not cease and it tends to drag on in intensity. Major symptoms include Spinal cord compression, numbness, weakness and sometimes paralysis.

Dr Sulaiman 

Nuclear Medicines have come a long way. NCSM have a Nuclear Medical Centre. Scanners do not emit radiation. Radiation injections are given an hour or two before scanning. Several type of scanning may be combined to produce better imaging. Pet scans and CT scans are some of the services offered by the centre.

A typical scanner

Fifty or more people attended the talks and participated well in the questions and answers sessions. Lunch was served at the end of the talk.

We are glad the medical science are in place for us now

Thank you NCSM for making us more aware of cancer and related talks.

Allen Lai

Friday, August 3, 2012

Relay For Life Kuala Lumpur 2012

Hi all

Relay for Life Kuala Lumpur is back. Join me to celebrate Life as it should be, Happy, compassionate and with love. Bring your family members and care givers.

Know more about the importance and history of Relay for Life in this link below

Me, preparing to celebrate Life and Fight back

Register your participation from this weblink.

Take care. Come and join us to celebrate Life and to Fight Back.

Allen Lai

Excellent publications and guidelines for Prostrate Cancer

Prostrate Cancer survivors should visit the Prostrate Cancer UK website. There are several important free publications on how to cope with prostrate cancer treatments and therapies. I personally use the above guide during my hormone therapy.
Visit the link below to download the free PDF files.

Take care

Allen Lai