Saturday, April 26, 2008

30-something single women: independence, and endearing integrity

I have got like A LOT to say about 30 something single women especially in malaysia and asia but right now, let me share with you an article from The Star:


The mindset of modern Muslimah

Weekender talks to four Muslim women who challenge the preconceptions about their religion.


Countless films and literary works have been made to unveil the Muslim woman – but no, you don’t get many happy stories. More often than not, the women are relegated to the role of damsel under duress.

Muslim women aren’t homogenous, though. Some devoutly observe the pillars of Islam, others observe as many as they can and there are those who don’t at all.

Some leave nothing but their eyes uncovered, others wear brightly patterned pashminas, jeans, cropped jackets and tank tops. Some are still in shackles, others are done being rescued.

Four thirtysomething women share their views on being Muslim:

Sara Takieddin, 32
Freelance audio engineer/sound designer/musician
Annual income: RM29,540
Damascus, Syria

A talented musician and devout Muslimah (Muslim woman), Sara is one woman who seems to have it all. Her music has been played at a church service in the US, an occasion she proudly cites as one of her highest accomplishments.

“It’s the most amazing thing because it shows that Muslims and Christians can coexist,” says Sara who dabbles in a fusion of different genres like rock and New Age.

“Lately, I’ve been into Islamic themes, with a twist of the New Age. My musical creations are inspired by Thikr (remembrance of Allah). I am also influenced by music from Evanescence, Carol King, Loreena McKennitt, Toshihiko Sahashi, Dawud Wharnsby Ali and Zara, just to name a few,” adds the musician who plays the keyboard and guitar.

Sara works from home, and her day begins in the wee hours while most are still tucked under their bed covers. Music is not her sole passion, though.

“Whenever I get the chance, I work with Palestinian refugees. Other than that, when there is war, I’d aid the refugees, for instance, in the Israeli war against Lebanon. I also volunteered to help the environment and plant trees. I sometimes offer my audio engineering skills if it is for the benefit of Islam,” says Sara.

Sara obtained her diploma in audio engineering from SAE Institute Malaysia.

“One thing I appreciate is variety, and Malaysia has a lot of that,” says Sara, who’s planning to spend her honeymoon here.

On what’s it’s like to be a woman in Syria, Sara says women, regardless of religion, have the freedom to do whatever they want as long it does not contradict social norms.

“However, this only applies when she’s single. The moment a women gets hitched, she loses a big chunk of her freedom and individuality, although I notice there seems to be an awakening within the newer generation. Women are treated equally – roughly. Salary-wise, it’s comparable.

“In Syria, I don’t think women are given all her Islamic rights, because the male-dominant culture is repackaged and labelled as Islam. In Islam, women enjoy certain privileges which men are deprived of. The man is responsible for the complete maintenance of his wife and family. All financial burdens are borne by him alone.

“In contrast, women have no financial responsibilities whatsoever, except for her personal expenses – for instance, should she wish to own luxurious things. She is also free to retain whatever she possesses before marriage,” Sara states.

Sara’s love life also mirrors her faith in Islam.

“I wouldn’t get involved in a relationship where I’m uncertain marriage is the aim. I’d rather have my family enquire about the man to determine whether he is a good person,” she says

If she is attracted to someone, Sara’s modus operandi is to get a third person to talk to the guy. This was how Sara and her fiance met.

“I told a friend to find a potential husband for me, and he did. Both of us already knew each other but had no idea the other was looking. Now we’re in love and soon to be married,” she reveals.

“After my partner and I tie the knot this June, we will be relocating to Los Angeles, California.”

In April 2005, Sara began to wear the hijab (head scarf).

“When I totally grasped the wisdom behind Islam’s command of wearing the hijab, I knew I couldn’t bear myself not wearing it,” she says.

When Sara needs to unwind, she enjoys soaking in her Jacuzzi.

“If I badly need to unwind, I read the Qur’an,” says this plucky lass who enjoys globe-trotting solo.

“I’ve been to Canada, Egypt, Lebanon, Switzerland, the UK and US. Next on my travel list is Turkey. I’ve been wanting to go there for a long time.”

Elham Gholami, 30
Customer Service Executive
Annual income: RM31,417
Tehran, Iran

Today, very few Muslim countries adhere to the Islamic ideal in their treatment of women and place restrictions on women, something that has no grounds in the Quran, or the hadith, the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad,” says Elham.

“Women are accorded different rights and privileges depending on the government and customs in the area,” she opines.

“Pakistani women have political rights but are often exploited by men. Saudi women have no public role, yet they are extremely protected by their families and government and are offered dowries, often very high ones, and are entitled to keep their own wealth,” says Elham.

“In Iran, it’s somewhere in the middle.

“Not everything Muslims do is based on religious principles. In its original state, Islam gave women privileges and didn’t impose double standards upon them.

“Muslim women are entitled to inheritance, and allowed to choose or refuse prospective husbands. But in some Muslim countries, their rights have been taken away.

“In Iran, we are free to educate ourselves and seek jobs, but we have to cover up, and this is a strict ruling especially in offices and universities. Still, to me, it is bearable,” she shrugs.

The Quran, says Elham, teaches that men and women are equal.

“The only thing that makes one person better than the other is his or her character. Islamic legislation has given women unprecedented status, even if some don’t always live up to these standards,” says Elham, who is optimistic about the future for women in Iran.

“It’s improving and I’m certain that conditions will get much better.”

When she’s not working, Elham paints and does yoga.

“A big portion of my salary goes towards fees for these classes. I attend yoga lessons twice a week and painting class once a week. I’ve been staying in the same house with my family for over 20 years, but I don’t know my neighbours very well.

“Before a girl marries, she must also obtain her father’s approval,” says Elham who is still single.

“I’m lucky my father allows me to do what I like, and I’m free to marry the man of my choice, as long as he is Muslim.”

Dating in Iran is frowned upon.

“A man and woman who date are punished, but a lot of young people do it although it is forbidden.”

Amina Jamal, 36
Sales manager
Annual income: RM 14,767
Lahore, Pakistan

What is it like to be the only female in a multinational company?

“It’s not easy but it’s interesting,” says Amina.

“At times, my male colleagues don’t take me seriously, which is exasperating. I lead a team of 14, and some of the men under me have problems taking orders from a lady boss.”

Her colleagues are like an extended family to her.

“Half the time we are arguing about one thing or another, but it’s normally all in good spirit. I enter the workplace on my own terms and I am grateful to Allah and my family for it. If it wasn’t for my mother’s support, I would not have been able to work nights or at odd hours,” she explains.

Amina’s previous employment was with an American company, and her hours were from 5pm to 3am.

“The company’s clients are in New Zealand and Australia, thus the late shift. I didn’t get to see much of my family then. Now my hours are more reasonable. I start work at 2pm and leave the office by 10pm,” she says.

Amina’s family is used to not having her around when breaking fast during Ramadhan and celebrating Eid.

“They’re accustomed to it as it has been that way for the past seven years,” she says.

Amina says she enjoys dining out and trying new eateries.

“I have been to all the restaurants in Lahore and whenever a new one opens, I make a beeline for it with my friends. A highly recommended place for good food is at Mirchi on M M Alam Road. In the old city of Lahore, Cuku’s Cafe is worth a visit.

“If you eat on the topmost floor in the evening, you will get a breathtaking view of Badshahi Mosque across the road. The food is brought from neighbouring roadside restaurants and pulled up using a pulley system.”

Pakistan, Amina argues, has surpassed even the US in gender equality, in that it has had a female head of state.

“Women are allowed to drive, vote, attend co-educational universities and hold paying jobs,” she adds. However, there are areas where Pakistan’s treatment of women isn’t very Islamic.

“Women have no control over their own property and are usually accorded minimal dowries. The norm is that the bride’s family has to provide all sorts of gifts to the husband and his family,” she says. Because of this, a large number of girls aren’t married.

“Men in Pakistan prefer prospective brides to be well-off in order to get high dowries. These women are the ones more likely to get married.

“In Islam, the man is supposed to be the provider of his family. Women are not obliged to go out and earn. If she wants to, she can do so, provided the job does not jeopardise her sanctity, honour and grace. Around 20% of the labour force is female.

“Women are also employed in the armed forces, are members of National and Provincial assemblies and are made ministers. In very traditional areas though, women are dominated by men because of ignorance and illiteracy.

So what does Amina look for in a guy?

“He has to be educated, open-minded and financially strong,” says the holder of a master’s degree in English.

“I like reading books on contemporary religion, Islam, philosophy, history, biographies, comics and poetry. For ear candy, I enjoy bhangra, rock and roll, disco, Latin, and folk music.

“I like Red Earth products. My make-up staples are lipstick and eyeliner. When I go out, I put on brightly coloured shalwar kameez, the national dress of Pakistan.”

Amina has heard so much about Malaysia through her friends.

“They like it and say it is a modern country. I’m eager to visit it one day."

Nour Farouk Lambaz, 30
Annual income: RM48,705
Amman, Jordan

Jordanian Nour has accumulated quite a number of stamps on her passport.

“I’ve travelled to Egypt, France, Germany, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, Syria, Thailand, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, UK and US,” she says.

“Next on my travel list are Brazil, Croatia, Czech Republic, Iran, Italy, Lebanon and Mauritius.”

For the last 26 years Nour has been living with her family in a housing complex for Royal Jordanian Airlines employees in Amman. Her father is an artist and mother a teacher.

“When my family and I first moved here, the location seemed so far out. Now, Amman is growing rapidly and it no longer feels inaccessible. I like the area because it feels safe,” says Nour whose mother is Turkish and father Jordanian.

“My parents are practising Muslims. Both pray, fast, give zakat (alms) and perform the Haj. I try my best to pray five times a day, but I give out zakat, fast and hope that I too, God willing, will get to go to Mecca and fulfil the Haj one day.”

An archivist in a pan-Arab company, Nour is a stickler for detail.

“Because of the amount of sorting and listing I do, I’m trained to be organised and logical,” says Nour.

When she’s not busy cataloguing records and doing research, Nour treats herself to massages, facials, horseback riding, going on hikes and driving her car with some good music on.

“Horse riding classes are expensive, but it's worth every penny! I love the feeling when you're one with the horse. It makes me feel strong and able to go anywhere”

Nour has also been practising yoga for the past eight years.

“Yoga makes me stretch muscles I never knew existed,” says Nour who graduated from the University of Jordan with a Bachelor's degree in English Language and Literature.

In May this year, Nour will be getting married and she will be coming to Kuala Lumpur for her honeymoon.

“My family has given their consent. Although I make the final decision as to whom I marry, their opinion matters to me,” she says.

Speaking on the position of Muslim women, she says, “In most cases, when Muslim women are oppressed, it is by their men who are not very good Muslims. So it’s not Islam. Islam is a very fair and beautiful religion. It is the reason pagan Arabs became scholars at one point. It is the reason girls stopped being buried alive.

“In Jordan, we are moderate Muslims. But Muslim women, as well as Christian women, play a secondary role. Women are usually busy bringing up children. Men are the providers,” she explains.

Nour feels motherhood is one of the most important roles in society.

“Competent mothers who can run a warm and welcoming home and raise a family of happy, confident and well-disciplined children are becoming increasingly hard to come by.”


Where 30-something single men failed, the women are just on the uprising. Single men in their 30s especially in Malaysia, and more specifically, Malays, seem likely to lose their self-esteem when it comes to thinking of settling down. Although there are still many typical 30-something ladies who have also given up on the whole marriage and family idea, I have met more and more of them who have liberated themselves from conforming to the society and become what they should be. Many of them are still hoping that they will be having their own family and so on, but they have gained so much, experience and what nots that the Malay men are getting intimidated by the uprising power and prowess displayed by the women.

I find it strange too, judging from my own experience how low one 30 plus man's confidence compared to when they reach their so-called peak between 22 to 29. They (and so those typical malaysian ladies) have been setting in their mind that marriage and having family begin only when one is in their 20s. And if these 30plus malay men decided to marry, they will only look for those much, much younger girls and their female peers no longer in their quest list. So stupid some of them to think that women can only bear child when they are 29 and younger. A woman who has never given birth before would start to have some difficulties to conceive when they reach 40. However, with modern hi-tech medical and bio-engineering technologies, the impossibilities of the yesteryears can be denied or at least, much have been improved and so, such impossibility has reduced to almost nothing.

I am so glad to have known many 30-something single ladies in the malaysian blogosphere scene and they are still way cool and youthful, one would only imagine the gregarious Sex and The city girl or better to capture the idea of what they have become into. Mostly,it is about their exposure to the more wider horizon , being western educated and all that. Nevertheless, the local university graduates are also doing so much better in terms of embracing life as a single woman in their 30s.

When the western men and many women, especially in the US and UK and some rich European countries see the age 30 and above as the right marrying age, I hope Malaysians would do the same and not be embarrassed to grace the earth as a single person, having to tick single status box on the form and declaring themselves singleton without much regrets.

And I also hope that once I marry, it will be mostly on fulfilling the other half of the sunnah nabi and with all the experience i have, marriage will be like a merge of two enterprises/empire or some sort of a consolidation. Sex is important and I am looking forward to doing it the halal way. I think I had enough of adding sins into my book.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Identical TRIPLETS?

I know this is definitely a miracle case with a probability of 1 in 200, 000, 000 chances but I also think it is a bit freaky. I mean, I am already a bit freaked out seeing grownup lookalikes, as in identical twins especially men, but I dont think i can fathom the idea of having THREE identical triplets. It can be a nightmare to me just to recognize which one is which and all three of them can play TRIPLE pranks.

Read more of the news from Daily Mail here.


Parents celebrate their 200 million-to-one miracle - identical triplet girls


With their bright blue eyes and cherubic smiles, Gabriella, Alessia and Olivia are a picture of cuteness.

But as well as being adorable, they are also quite extraordinary.

For they are naturally-conceived identical triplets.

Scroll down for more ...

Three of a kind: Identical triplets (from left) Olivia, Gabriella and Alessia

Medical experts say the chances of such births are around 200million to one.

Their delighted parents are Richard Rees, 22, and his 23-year-old fiance Carmela Testa, who is a midwife.

She gave birth in January surrounded by colleagues at the maternity unit in Peterborough where she normally works.

The sisters were born seven weeks prematurely via Caesarean section.

They weighed between 3lb 4oz and 3lb 10oz and spent three weeks in an incubator until they were strong enough to go home.

Scroll down for more ...

Triple trouble: The girls are proving a handful for their parents

Miss Testa said: "I found out at my 12-week scan I was having triplets.

"I knew they would be identical because there was just one placenta, so they were from the same egg.

"I was very shocked. They weren't planned. I'm quite small - only 5ft tall - so at the unit they joked that out of all the midwives it would have to be me that gave birth to triplets."

She added: "Everything is fine now and the girls are all putting on weight. I'm so overwhelmed when I see them. I can't believe they are mine and that they are perfect."

Telling the triplets apart is not proving too difficult.

"Olivia has a strawberry birthmark on her neck, Gabriella is a little bit smaller and Alessia has a sharper cry," explained Mr Rees, a vocational coach.

Identical triplets occur when one fertilised egg splits to create three embryos which grow separately but normally in the womb.

Non-identical triplets occur after three separate eggs are fertilised. This is increasingly common during IVF treatment.


Kuuuurrrr semangat innit? They sure look very adorable and all, and I congratulate Richard and Carmela on their naturally conceived identical triplet girls. But seriously, I dont think i can tolerate having identical twins. Non-identical is fine by me. Seeing the identical ones are like looking at some clones or some Children of the corn, or Village of the Damned or The Wicker Man or something horror like that. They may look cute when they are younger but as they become matured and all grown up, and wearing the same dresses, acting similarly, and even walk together doing many things together, that sort of imagination really send some chills down my spine.

Of course, I wouldnt mind if they become two separate individuals even if they possess the same visible physical traits and shapes. In some cases, and I mean some men are having a fetish on going threesome (menage a trois) with twins though I am not exactly sure whether it applies to women on identical male twins too. Imagine some identical twin males marrying another identical twin females and only they know how to identify one another. Would a wife and husband swap occur among them? No need to tempt them on that, i reckon. Definitely will drive some people nuts seeing such couples around. Despite the odds surrounding them, they are still one of God's miracles.

There was one time, during the dusk at my old college in london that I received a visit from a 30 something male twins wearing almost similar tartan motive shirt with peculiarly matching trousers , similar hairstyles, similar height and both were wearing glasses. Somehow, they embodied the geekish look. I was in my old lab that time when one man appeared at the door step asking me how to find this Professor. As it was rather a usual, harmless even kinda query, I told him what he needed to know. Shortly after that another man appeared next to him, standing in front of me looking exactly the same, totally identical. Right at that moment, i squealed a bit, yet trying as much under my breath to refrain meself from being over dramatic.

"There are two of u?"

"Yeah, we are twins, identical ones," said the 1st guy appearing ever so nonchalant yet amused with my sudden act. Coz it was a bit of a suspense to me. How could I not? Not especially during that wee hour when the building was mostly empty as many have gone away.

"OK then. But u seriously scared the living daylight out of me being alone and late in the lab and all that. This is my 1st time ever seeing two identical men in some sort of similar clothes. "

"Sorry about that (giggles)". His brother seemed so unperturbed at all. I wondered why. Must be too accustomed by such a reaction demonstrated by yours truly.

"Alright then, thanks for the info."

"No problem". And they left together side by side. Creepish, i tell ya, reminded me of that dorky looking identical twin who loved to dance and hang out at a club in Ally Macbeal.

See, I am not one who is so fond of identical twins even though I used to think that they r so lucky to be born like that.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Lingzhi-misai kucing herbal tea wonder

Sebab dah lama tak update this blog, i insert an excerpt on Lingzhi, a type of mushroom that has been proven to have a certain substantial medicinal effects on five organs: Heart, Lung, Kidney , Pancreas and Liver.

I have began consuming Lingzhi-Misai Kucing (Orthosiphon stamineus benth) herbal tea for a few days now without taking my usual one betablocker per day pill to stabilize the blood pressure. I find it quite effective on controlling my heart palpitations to a normal beat at a normal systolic and diastolic measurements. Alhamdulillah, i feel so much better now, although i do experience a little dizziness , but that is a normal effect and more on this , you may read below. On top of that, those regular visits (at least 3 times per week) to the gym doing aerobic workouts and all helps increase my stamina and wellbeing.

Now i know my own health threshold point when it comes to avoiding getting hypertension. I just have to keep losing those extra pounds off in order to balance those hormones in my body and to reduce the hypertensive symptoms.


Excerpt on Lingzhi from this website: Best Reishi:

Ganoderma Lucidim (also known as Lingzhi in China; Reishi in Japan and Youngchi in Korea) . For centuries, Ganoderma is claimed as "King of Herbs" by herbal practitioners in China and Japan for its efficacy in the maintenance or improvement of general well-being. Lingzhi has been listed as a Chinese herb and classified as a superior herb dating back to 2800 BC.

This is one of the treasures of traditional Chinese medicine. Being named as the "fairy herb", it is proven by pharmaceutical studies and clinical research that Lingzhi help to prevent from and cure diseases, and prolong life. In the famous ancient Chinese medical publications, "Shen Nong's Materia Medica" and "Pen-ts'ao Kan-mu" (Compendium of Materia Medica) written respectively in the Han and Ming Dynasties, there are detailed descriptions of the Lingzhi effects. Contemporary studies further proved its medicinal effects, and confirmed that Lingzhi polysaccharide is the key ingredient to maintain physiological balance and prolong life. Today, Lingzhi has been formally recognized as a medicine listed in the China state pharmacopoeia. At the same time, Lingzhi has been sanctified by the State as a new food resource, and it is proven to be safe without any toxicity. Lingzhi can be served both as food and medicine.
Scientific studies find that Lingzhi is rich in effective pharmaceutical ingredients. They can be divided into 10 categories: Lingzhi polysaccharide, polypeptides, 16 types of amino acids (7 of which are indispensable to human), protein, steriod, triterpene, mannitol, coumarin, alkaloids, organic acids (mainly fumarate), and micro-elements, such as Ge, P, Fe, Ca, Mn, Zn, etc. Lingzhi can help to maintain the balance within the body. It cures diseases related to cardiac and brain vessels, digestive system, neural system, endocrine system, respiratory system, and locomotory system. Its effect is particular prominent to tumor, hepatic diseases, and preventing aging.

Lingzhi Key Effects
Lingzhi is used very widely. According to the concept of Chinese medicine, Ganoderma lucidum can penetrate into and work on the five key human organs, so it can be served for impairment of the heart, lung, liver, pancreas, and kidney. Ganoderma lucidum can cure the sickness of various human systems including respiratory, circulatory, digestive, neural, endocrine, locomotory, etc, involving medical, surgical, gynecological, paediatric, and ENT. All these are because of its fundamental effect of "supporting the vital essence and securing the root", thus to improve the immune system. It differs from any other medicines that are used to cure specific disease, or supplementary nutrients that only address particular body requirements. Ganoderma lucidum helps regulate entire body mechanism and metabolism to ensure that all organs function properly. Some specific effects of Ganoderma lucidum are as following:

1. Effect on Tumor
Main cause to the development of tumor is the disorder of or poor performing immune system. Ganoderma lucidum can best regulate and activate the immune system. It prominently enhances the body immune function and increase self defense capability against tumor. Ganoderma lucidum enhances the function of monocytic macrophage via activating synthesis of interleukin H. It also enhances blood synthesis capacity, particularly white blood cells level. Combining with the inhibitory effect on cancer cells provided by certain ingredients in Ganoderma lucidum, it becomes one of the most effective medicines for anti-tumor, prevent cancer, and supplement to cancer treatment. Ganoderma lucidum possesses hardly any toxic to human body. This unique feature of enhancing immunity without toxigenicity is the definite advantage of Ganoderma lucidum over any other immune system intensifier.

2. Liver Protection & Detoxification
Ganoderma lucidum is able to protect the liver from damaged by various physiological and biological factors. Moreover, effect can be obtained either pre-or post-damage. Ganoderma lucidum speeds up metabolism of both medicine and toxic substances in liver, leading to curing of toxicated hepatitis. Ganoderma lucidum is also suitable for treating chronic hepatitis, effectively eliminating the related symptoms as dizzy, fatigue, and so on. Ganoderma lucidum can be used to treat chronic toxicosis, the various kinds of chronic hepatitis, and other hepatic diseases.

3. Effect on Cardiovascular
Clinical studies and experiments with animals confirm that Ganoderma lucidum can effectively dilate coronary artery, increase coronary vessel blood flow, and improve circulation in cardiac muscle capillaries, thus increase the supply of oxygen and energy to cardiac muscle. Therefore Ganoderma lucidum helps to protect the heart from shortage of blood supply, and it is ideal for both curing and preventing heart diseases like nausea. Ganoderma lucidum can obviously reduce the level of blood cholesterol, liporotein and triglycerides in hypertensive patienst. It prevents the formation of arterial atheromatous patches. If patches are already formed, Ganoderma lucidum will reduce cholesterol in arterial wall and soften the blood vessel to avoid further damage. It also partially improves blood circulation, and inhibits platelet aggregation. All these effects contribute to preventing various kinds of stroke.

4. Aging Prevention
The polysaccharides and polypeptides found in Ganoderma lucidum can effectively delay aging by the following mechanisms.
1. To enhance and regulate immune function. Such enhancement and regulation can effectively delay aging in adult and aged people. For the youngster, the immune system will be optimized to ensure healthy growth.
2. To regulate metabolism and enhance synthesis of nucleic acids and proteins. Research works have shown that Ganoderma lucidum enhances synthesis of nucleic acids and proteins in blood plasma, liver, and bone marrow, hence effectively prevent aging. It is observed that the use of Ganoderma lucidum to prevent aging benefits not only the aged, but also the young, since growth and development process will ultimately lead to aging.
3. Effect on Free Radicals. One cause of aging is the reduction of self-originated antioxidant or antioxidant-like material (such as SOD)in the body. These antioxidants are essential for encountering damage to the body by free radicals. Ganoderma lucidum polysaccharides possess the properties that are very similar to SOD which can remove the free radicals and prevent its damage to the body by stopping over-oxidation of lipid. Such action protects the cells and delays their aging.
4. Ganoderma lucidum polysaccharides prominently enhance DNA synthesis in cell nucleus, and increase the number of cell divisions, which results in delayed aging.

5. Effect on Neurasthenia
In Chinese medication, Ganoderma lucidum has been used to treat neurasthenia and insomnia since it works on the central nervous system. Extract from Ganoderma lucidum can inhibit and reduce the level of body activity. This inhibitory effect is quantitative and is helpful for resuming the order of activity level. The fact that Ganoderma lucidum can delay the death as the result of over-dosage of a central stimulant such as caffeine demonstrates shows that Ganoderma lucidum works on the central nervous system by applying an inhibitory effect.
In ancient Chinese medical publications, Ganoderma lucidum can serve to "stabilize emotion", "increase wisdom", and "enhance memory power". Recently, it is reported that Ganoderma lucidum has prominent effect on insomnia caused by neurasthenia: Effectiveness is 87.14% to 100%.In general, effect becomes obvious after a period of 10 to 15 days, when sleep improved, appetite increased, and body weight gained. Related headache and dizzy will be reduced or stopped. Ganoderma lucidum has a relatively strong effect on the central nervous system that makes Ganoderma lucidum an effective substance for treatment of neurasthenia and insomnia. Ganoderma lucidum is becoming more and more indispensable to the sufferers of neurasthenia and insomnia. To date, the effect of Ganoderma lucidum on neurasthenia and insomnia has been clearly described and stated in the China State pharmacopoeia.

6. Effect on Hypertension
Ganoderma lucidum can effectively reduce blood pressure of an anesthetized rabbit: systolic and diastolic pressure lowered by 15% and 25% respectively. Related neural activity is also inhibited: inhibition is 20% and 40% respectively. According to a report of a hospital, there had been 18 cases of high blood pressure successfully cured by Ganoderma lucidum extract, effectiveness up to 88.9%. It was stated that the effect of reducing blood pressure by Ganoderma lucidum was mainly the result of inhibition to the sympathetic nervous system. From another report, among 30 cases using Ganoderma lucidum products to cure high blood pressure, effectiveness was 88.3%. Moreover, it was found that Ganoderma lucidum also extends and stabilizes the effect of reducing blood pressure of other medicine.

7. Treament of Diabetes
The constitutes in Ganoderma lucidum that reduce blood glucose are Ganoderma B and C. The principle is by enhancing utilization of blood glucose by body tossues. Ganoderma lucidum serves as a substitute to insulin to inhibit release of fatty acids. It thus improves symptoms in high blood glucose and high urine glucose patients. Blood glucose will be reduced from 173 to 116, cholesterol from 233 to 179, beat-protein from 580 to 465. Water-solubility polysaccharides in Ganoderma lucidum suppresse insulin-independent diabetes. The health food products manufactured by Japan Numata Kenji, has been widely used for the treatment of diabetes.

8. Effect on Chronic Bronchitis & Bronchus Asthma
Ganoderma lucidum can stop coughing, clear sputum, and suppress asthma. It also relieves the symptoms of the related illnesses. Since Ganoderma lucidum can activate the immune system, it can prevent from flu, and thus above syndromes. Ganoderma lucidum is particularly suitable for the treatment of the patients categorized as "cold and wet" by Chinese medicine, while for the "hot and dry" patients would be relatively less effective. The average effectiveness is 80%.

9. Effect on Hyper Susceptibility
When the body is invaded by an antigen that ellicits an immunological reactions and results the various abnormality and immuno-pathological symptoms, Ganoderma lucidum can be used to suppress the reactions and resume the body order. The experiment shows that Ganoderma lucidum can stop the release of hyper susceptible factors and prevent the development of allergic reactions. Therefore, Ganoderma lucidum is relatively more effective over other current medicines when treating the illnesses caused by abnormal hyper-reactivity or autoimmunity such as allergic asthma, erythematous lupus vulgaris, rheumatoic arthritis, rheumatoic heart diseases, allergic rhinitis, skin diseases, etc. Ganoderma lucidum can also help to cure the toxification patients as the result of pro-longed usage of hormones.

10. Effect on Beauty Care
Ganoderma lucidum has been named the "Medicine of Eternal Life". It is mainly contributed to the effect on skin protection, and delaying aging. Ganoderma lucidum can retain and regulate the water in skin and thus can keep the skin elasticity, hydrated and smooth. It also inhibits the formation and deposition of melanin in skin. Today, the beauty care products made from Ganoderma lucidum are becoming the new stars in the industry. Taking Ganoderma lucidum food products will obtain synergistic effect. To add Ganoderma lucidum into the bath will not only keep the skin smooth and lustrous, but also prevent it from bacterial infection.

In addition to the above effects, Ganoderma lucidum stimulates blood synthesis in bone marrow and increase WBC level, which make it suitable for the treatment of low WBC symptom caused by over dosage of radiation and blood diseases, etc. By enhancing the body immune system, Ganoderma lucidum can defend the body from viral infections like AIDS virus. Ganoderma lucidum also promotes tolerance of the body to adverse environment. It suppresses over contraction of smooth muscle in uterus to remedy the functional uterine bleeding. Ganoderma lucidum is also effective for the pigment denaturation in retina, the underdeveloped brain, as well as abnormal muscular development. Ganoderma lucidum is also an effective pain reliever for headache, neural pain, cancer pain, etc.

Reaction After Serving Lingzhi
Serving Lingzhi should follow the concept of Chinese food treatment: "No dizzy, no recovery". At the beginning, some people may feel dizzy, pelvic fatigue, itching, thirsty, or even the increase of defaecation and urination. However, these reactions demonstrate the effectiveness of Lingzhi to the body. The toxicity is dissolved, mobilized, and excreted. Therefore, these reactions are normal.


You may also want to do some research on Misai Kucing herb that complement well with Lingzhi to boost the goodness effect on our body.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Small World Indeed

Picture taken during the launching of the new Malaysia Hall and Malaysia Student Department in Queensborough Terrace, Bayswater, London, August 2004:

Thanks Kamarul for the photo. I pon tak hengat that someone took a picture of me and Kak Puteri Zakiah and it was you, kamarul! Small world indeed. We have actually met in london and yet we didnt speak to each other except to pose with your nenek saudara that u fondly call her "Opah Chu".

Isnt she a pretty lady or what? This I mean Kak Puteri laaa , but feel free to think that I looked like a hot babe there, sexaaayyyyy. Behind us, the man with the blue collar, is the infamous Pak Syed. He's been working at Malaysia hall since 1960s and he is still healthy well into his golden age (70 something). He was also known as "Yoda" by the undergraduate students across London and the UK itself. the way, I first knew Kamarul, a Sapura Holdings engineer in person through a PDA-moleskin meeting organized by Pak Adib, the veteran blogger at KL Sentral 2 years ago. And apparently it was 2 years after our 1st unspoken meeting in london. He and his family live in BBBangi like myself but in the different section.

Yesterday, I met an old primary schoolmate who didnt recognize me 1st but she somehow knew me from somewhere. It took her quite a while to guess who I was, and she thought i was some Sharifah (a lady with arabic blood). Quite close enough, I thought. And when i told her my name, she could not quite put the name and myself together but of course she remembered the name very well. I think i am blessed having such a unique name like Manal as a Malaysian. Not many of us in Malaysia although that name "Manal" (pronounced as Ma-naal , sounds like Chanel) is very much common in Egypt, and many other Arab League countries.

And not long after that, I received an SMS from Kamarul telling me that he found an old picture of me with his Opah Chu.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

What do I really, really, really want?

Elizabeth Gilbert, author of the book "Eat, Pray, Love", shared her own enlightenment stories on one episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show and below are what caught me most:

Excerpt from Oprah Winfrey's website (click here for more stories):

You can take your own spiritual journey every, single day. Liz has three daily rituals that anyone can do anywhere.

  • Start a journal and answer this question every morning: What do I really, really, really want? "You have to say really, really, really three times or else you don't believe it. And answer it truthfully and do it again the next day and the next and the next," she says. "Because you can't set your journey if you don't know what you're for."

  • Write down the happiest moment of every day in a happiness journal. "It's a way of reminding myself what really makes me happy and what doesn't," she says, "and learn and study and look back and see what is it consistently."

  • Refine your mantra. "I say refine, not choose, because we all actually already have a mantra. We just might not realize that we do. Whatever you repeat constantly in your head is your mantra whether you know it or not, and that is leading you on your way," she says. "So if you're repeating, 'I'm a moron, I'm an idiot, I'm a failure, I'm a jerk, I'm a loser,' it's your mantra. So decide whether that's working for you. … Maybe it's not and then maybe you might want to choose a different thing to try to say whenever you remember that you're thinking what you're always doing."


The third one: Refine Your Mantra, does strike a chord with me. In my own personal take on this, I would also add not just that "What do I really, really, really want" mantra, but even in Islam, any du'a (solemn prayers) repeated three times will add weight to the significance of our wishes and what we would ask from God. Once you have said your prayers and repeat the things you really, really, really want three times, you will then have to tawakkal (put the trust) to God. Somehow, the power of believing and keeping in faith could actually work in some sort of a cosmic way whichever religion one believes in. It's this natural bond to our Creator and He is Oft-forgiving and Most Merciful and Ever Knowing.


I am working my way towards reaching my ideal weight based on the healthy Body Mass Index, BMI range of 18-24. Fat is easily linked to many diseases including cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes, and etc and it strikes the overweight and obese person higher than those who are keeping themselves within the healthy BMI range. Not only that, excess fat can cause hormone imbalance that will lead to irregular menstruation cycle as what two O&G specialists informed me.

It's been the second week since i have begun to take gym and some aerobic lessons seriously and for ONCE, i did not experience "breathless" or short of breath after like 2 years. I have started eating a smaller portion of rice everyday since the end of last year, looked after my food consumption and all and yet, nothing beats the much accelerated effect of burning those fats by doing the aerobic exercises per week. And although i tried to do that on my own at home and did brisk walking down the local lake park since a year ago, it wasnt as fun as joining a group of ladies flexing our muscles and sweating together as we tried (even struggled) to follow our instructor's orders and steps. It combines both aerobic and resistance routines and amazingly, our body is literally our very own number one resistance and not those added weights/ dumb bells.

But then, after each session, my poor left knee begins making some cracking sound especially whenever i climb up the stairs. For that i had to resort to applying Minyak Kayu Putih (100% sans methyl salicylate, click here for more info) to remedy the patella joints.

Minyak Kayu Putih Cap Lang, bagus!!