Health Talk

The NUS Health Blog for Undergraduate Articles

Month: November 2018

Diet Is Able to Add Years to One’s Life


Being healthy is about more than getting in your recommended exercise every week. Sometimes being healthy means going to the doctor to get a prescription for Pruritus Ani relief, or having to take a mental health day to realign yourself properly. One constant contributor to whole health is what we eat. The phase, “you are what you eat” has more truth to it than a lot of people realise, and the reasons why make a lot of sense. In fact, studies and research have found that people who eat more vegetables, and considerably limit or even entirely eliminate their intake of processed foods, are healthier all around.

A balanced diet is worth far more than any other contributing factor you could add into the mix – even exercise. While exercising and keeping physically fit is definitively important, all that hard work ends up being for nothing if you do not fuel your body correctly. Whereas if you keep your diet generally clean, then not only does your body end up feeling better but you begin to look healthier as well, and your exercise efforts tend to go a lot further as well. There is so much to be said about the power of a healthy, balanced diet.

Multiple studies and varying research has found that following a healthy lifestyle can expand the life expectancy of both men and women by up to ten years. High-quality foods, for example, might take a little longer to get used to buying regularly because they tend to be a little more expensive, but when you limit or eliminate entirely the unhealthy items from your grocery list and your shopping basket, then the grocery bill improves dramatically.

Eating leafy green vegetables more often, and ingesting less processed meats and unnecessary fats and sugars (think potato chips and lollies) has significantly positive impacts on the body because our brains are wired to function on the nutrients they get from the foods and liquids we fuel our bodies with. If we choose to ingest unhealthy foods and liquids, then we essentially feed our brains – the muscle that literally keeps everything functioning as it should and at its best – the wrong kinds of nutrients, if any are even present in the unhealthy foods we eat. When we choose to commit to a healthy diet, on the other hand, our brains happily take on the nutrients and turn it into energy, helping our bodies to perform better, to feel better, and even to look better.

Despite what many choose to believe, a healthy lifestyle is not that difficult to lead. Essentially, once the ground work has been done and the habits have been ingrained in daily life, then it ends up feeling less and less like a drastic lifestyle change and more like second nature. Like anything else, it takes time for our bodies to get used to change, but if those changes are for the better then our bodies ultimately end up thanking us by performing better across the board.

Benefits of Using Artificial Intelligence in Medicine


With the continued emergence of more complex illnesses, medical professionals have been forced to keep improving their expertise in order to match the changing market demands. Many unique technological innovations designed for the healthcare industry are also coming up almost on a daily basis. Among these innovations is the Artificial Intelligence, commonly referred to as the AI.

The AI can be defined as the combination of various technologies that simulate the cognitive functions of a human being. While these technologies are being used in numerous sectors, the healthcare industry has and continues to be the main beneficiary. In fact, these innovations have brought a paradigm shift in the way medical services are being rendered in healthcare facilities.

Here are some of the benefits of using Artificial Intelligence in medicine.

  • Accuracy in service delivery

Traditionally, doctors relied solely on the information provided by radiology images acquired through machines such as x-rays, CT scanners and MRI apparatus. But with AI, health professionals can now critically analyze the inner workings of a patient’s body, eliminating any possible misdiagnosis. With these innovations, pathologists, radiologists and doctors are able to unanimously agree on the kind of treatment a patient requires. Artificial Intelligence uses advanced learning algorithms to sift through various diagnostic images, checking for anomalies.

  • Automated health records

While the electronic health recording system has brought important changes in the healthcare industry, it has been faced with numerous challenges, including cognitive overload, limitless documentation and user burnouts. But the AI has revolutionized this system by automating various processes and making its interfaces more user-friendly. With the creation of features such as voice recognition and language processing, clinical officers are able to save time when retrieving medical records. It has also become quite easy for doctors and clinical officers to share information about their patients by saving the details in the cloud. This has helped in avoiding cases of overdose, allergies and wrong combinations.

  • Improved surgical precision

Although some people are still skeptical about the use of robots in surgery, their assistance has greatly improved surgical procedures. They are designed to guide the surgeon’s hand and instantly provide information about the patient’s health. Furthermore, the robots are being used to perform non-invasive surgical procedures thus reducing the duration that patients remain in the hospital.

In laparoscopic cholecystectomy, for instance, AI systems can be used to help surgeons recognize anatomical structures using real-time laparoscopic imagery. This makes it easy for them to identify target areas, danger zones, cystic duct & arteries, gallbladder and so on, which is critical in decision making.

Robot hands help to neutralize tremors in surgeons’ hands when performing complex surgeries thus reducing risk and improving the quality of the results. What’s more, the AI systems continue to monitor patients even when the doctors and nurses are not available.

  • Hands-on medical care

Traditionally, doctors reacted to symptoms presented to them by patients when they sought treatment. This left doctors with little to do to stop the infections from advancing as most of them were already at advanced stages. But enter Artificial Intelligence, and the situation has changed from reactive to proactive healthcare. The new technologies help in monitoring patients and suggest the most effective intervention before the situation gets out of hand. Thankfully, majority of medical facilities are now adopting the Artificial Intelligence in their service delivery.

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