Issue 145, April 2015
Healthy living with Traditional Chinese Medicine
Participants at the 31st Distinguished Alumni Forum learn how TCM can help one achieve and maintain good health

At the 31st Distinguished Alumni Forum titled ‘Towards healthy living’, expert alumni speakers shared valuable knowledge and tips on the benefits of TCM’s comprehensive and integrated care for wellness and treatment. Some 120 alumni, students and guests attended the forum which was organised by the NTU Alumni Affairs Office on 9 April at NTU’s one-north campus.

The first speaker for the evening, Ms Tjioe Yan Yin (SBS/2010), spoke about combatting stress with TCM. The Chinese Medicine physician at NTU’s Chinese Medicine Clinic explained how Qi circulation can help in managing one’s stress. In order to regulate Qi and blood circulation in one’s body, Ms Tjioe emphasised the importance of exercise and consuming Chinese herbs such as rose buds, chaihu, Hawthorne berry and tangerine peel. In addition to that, one may also undergo acupressure treatments which help to regulate Qi and blood circulation, relieve pain, and calm one’s mind. Deep breathing and meditation exercises will also calm the mind and regulate the body’s Qi.

Mr Brandon Yew (SBS/2011), the second forum speaker, delivered a presentation on the prevention and management of spinal musculoskeletal pain, the TCM way. Currently working as a TCM physician and acupuncturist at the Complementary Integrative Medicine Clinic at Tan Tock Seng Hospital, Mr Yew gave a brief introduction on musculoskeletal disorder which refers to the strain or injury to joints, muscles, tendons and ligaments, resulting in aches and pains, stiffness, numbness, impaired function and mobility, or even disability.

He explained how an employee can prevent such injuries at the workplace by maintaining good posture and ergonomics, taking frequent breaks to stretch, exercising regularly and keeping warm. A person may also undergo acupressure to ease the pain.

Traditional Medicine Resource Executive at the Singapore General Hospital’s Department of Pharmacy, and the final speaker for the evening’s forum, Ms Fung Foon Yin (SBS/2010), spoke about using TCM safely and rationally for healthy living. Throughout her presentation, Ms Fung continued to emphasise the importance of using TCM under a professional physician’s advice and to never self-medicate. As no two bodies are the same, some TCM products work well for some people, while others may cause adverse effects.

Ms Fung, who is also the President of the NTU Chinese Medicine Alumni Association, went on to introduce the various Chinese herbal medicine and their different toxity levels, and how some of them might cause adverse effects such as high blood pressure, respiratory paralysis and cardiac arrest if consumed wrongly.

In conclusion, she explained that TCM is more than just treatment using herbs and acupuncture. It is in fact, a comprehensive system of health maintenance and promotion which includes balance, prevention, holistic, and being in harmony with the environment.

The forum session ended with a question and answer session which allowed the participants to clarify with the speakers, any further doubts they might have had regarding TCM.

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