Tag Archives: Medical


by Dr. Mecherl Lim

MD (MA) Naturopath (ND), Holistic Kinesiology

I would like to overview 5 common women’s reproductive health problems and aim to assist you in making informed decisions about treatment options and to suggest ways you can incorporate practical preventive strategies into your lifestyle.

Fortunately, we live in a time when women’s  health issues are more openly discussed and it’s our hope you’ll perpetuate the wisdom gleaned from the following pages by sharing this with the women-men-in your life.

PREMENSTRUAL SYNDROME (PMS) – A disorder associated with a cluster of symptoms is classed as a syndrome. About 90 percent of menstruating women experience mood changes, fluid buildup and various other problems two to 14 days before menstruating. These symptoms may disrupt everyday life in about 10 to 20 percent of women.


More than 100 different symptoms of PMS have been reported.

The most common:

  • Irritability or aggression,
  • Depression and low self-esteem,
  • Insomnia,
  • Sore breasts,
  • Abdominal bloating/constipation,
  • Headaches.
  • Food cravings and binge eating,
  • Back and muscle pain,
  • Pelvic discomfort &
  • Reduced concentration, “fuzzy” brain.


A diagnosis is based on the pattern of symptoms experienced by women.  Sometimes medical hormone test is used.


Australian medical experts say the cause of PMS is unknown but there is some link to emotional, physical and hormonal factors.


  • Reproductive hormone imbalances may relate to relative levels of estrogen, progesterone, prolactin, and testosterone – or their breakdown products (metabolites). It is possible to have a normal level of a particular hormone but it may be blocked because it interacts with something else.
  • Cortisol, the stress hormone, increase blood sugar levels, which gives you a boost. However, when the levels decrease, you may feel tired and crave sugary foods.
  • Aldosterone, another adrenal hormone, affects the minerals  (electrolytes) and fluid balance.
  • Stress affects reproductive hormones, and your hormones may fluctuate more than “normal”. All changes are somewhat stressful and one theory is that when the levels of any hormone drop, you may experience “withdrawal”.
  • Other causes may be nutrient deficiencies or excesses, prostaglandin deficiencies or excesses, lowered natural opiates or neurotransmitters and live /intestinal malfunctions.


Current medical options include hormone therapy, oral contraceptives, antiprostaglandins (for pain), antidepressants, diuretics, and bromocriptine. Natural progesterone is probably the safest medical option, but scientific trials show it’s no better than placebo (Wyatt K, Dimmock P, Jones, et al, “Efficacy of progesterone and progestogens in management of premenstrual syndrome: a systematic review” British Medical Journal 323 (2001) : 776-80.

In a scientific study of isoflavones (which are commonly isolated from red clover or soy) for periodic breast pain (cyclical mastalgia), after three months of treatment nine out of 12 women had less pain compared with two of six on placebo. The researchers stated the isoflavones act as weak anti-estrogen and have no side effects. I suggest a more economical way of getting a good dose of isoflavones is to have a quarter of a cup of (phyto Nutri) alfalfa, mung beans or other sprouts daily


  • Chast tree produces a significant decrease in PMS symptoms compared with placebo and this has been verified in the least 15 scientific trials. Most trials lasted about three months and used low dose, guaranteed potency or standard products. example Dr Mecherl SHE 18.
  • St John wort, if the main symptoms are depression.
  • Ginkgo, for reduced concentration and breast tenderness.
  • Feverfew, to help prevent headaches.


  • Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) and magnesium have helped women more than placebo, although vitamin B6 alone is not as successful as a chaste tree (She18). (Common doses are 50mg of pyridoxine and 20mg of magnesium.) *Evening primrose oil is helpful when women are deficient in essential fatty acids or have problems with oil metabolism.
  • Calcium maybe helpful but depends on diet and absorption. Some women consume six serves of dairy foods daily (equivalent to about 3000mg of calcium), which is excessive and likely to interfere with other nutrients as well as being too alkaline.
  • Taking a multivitamin/mineral supplement improves symptoms in 17 out of 23 women. This is not surprising because when women with PMS are tested, they invariably have low levels of a number of vitamins and minerals compared with women who have minimal or no PMS.


In a dietary trial for premenstrual symptoms (PMS) and period pain, 33 women followed a low-fat vegetarian diet for two menstrual cycles. The diet consisted of grains, vegetables, legumes and fruit with no restrictions on quantity. (Animal products, added oils, fried foods, avocados, olives, nuts, nut butter and seeds were eliminated.) The symptoms and pain fell significantly.

This diet would provide a high level of phytoestrogens and fiber and consequently, the body’s own estrogen uptake would be lowered and constipation/ bloating would be reduced. However, in the long term, it would cause vitamin B12 deficiency unless a supplement was taken. Eggs, lean meat, yogurt, olives, avocados, nuts, and seeds are health-enhancing foods that should be eaten regularly in moderate quantities (besides, they re enjoyable to eat and also allow you to socialize normally!).

Dietary surveys indicate women with PMS tend to eat significantly more junk food, notably sugary, fatty and salty foods. Perhaps this indicates a need for energy or consolation? On the other hand, dieting makes you hungry, lowers your blood sugar, your brain doesn’t work properly, you feel tired and you grab foods to give you quick relief. You need energy before you can achieve anything. Have a large mixed vegetable salad or soup with lunch and plenty of cooked vegetables at night to help fill you up and to avoid weight gain.


  • Have varied, non-restrictive diet using foods in a natural a state as possible.
  • Avoid refined carbohydrates (sugars, white flour and so on) and fad diets.
  • Lack of essential fatty acids is linked to PMS, weight gain, excessive mood changes, lowered concentration, joint and muscle pain, food cravings, fatigue and breast tenderness. The best way to get essential fatty acids is from foods such as fish (especially herring, sardine, and salmon), nuts and seeds, virgin olive oil and avocado.
  • Don’t use foods for reward or consolation.  Find other strategies such as outings, music, aromatherapy, massage or books.
  • A study showed that jogging or walking about 2.5 kilometers daily for six months give significant reductions in fluid retention, breast tenderness, and the overall symptoms picture. If you are jogging or doing aerobic exercises, make sure you wear a firm support bra or you may aggravate breast soreness.


A whole food diet (with occasional treats), regular exercise and enjoying your life are basic PMS treatments.

What Is The Difference Between Food Allergy & Intolerence

Dr Mecherl Lim

An Intuitive Medical Practitioner in Alternative Medicine (MD) (MA), Naturopath (ND), Holistic Kinesiology (HK), and Functional Medicine (FM)

Food Allergy occurs when the body has chemical reaction to eating a particular food & drink. The symptoms for mild to moderate food allergy or intolerance may sometimes be similar, but food intolerance does not involve the immune system and does not cause severe allergic reactions (Anaphylaxis)

A Food Allergy occurs when the immune system reacts to harmless food. Learn to read food labels so you can avoid foods that cause allergic reactions.

Food Allergy & Food Intolerance

Symptoms of food intolerance occasionally resemble those of food allergy so food intolerance is commonly confused with food allergy. Food intolerance does not involve the immune system and does not cause severe allergic reactions (know as anaphylaxis). Food intolerance also does not show on allergy testing. Food intolerance can be a difficult concept to understand and is poorly understood by doctors as well. Sometimes, substances within foods can increase the frequency and severity of migraine, headaches, rashes (such as hives) or stomach upset such as irritable bowel.

Professional diagnosis and confirmation of allergies is important. In Australia, about one in 10 infants, one in 20 children up to 5 years of age, and two in 100 adults have food allergies.

Food Allergies has been Increasing

Allergies in general are on the increase worldwide and food allergies have also become more common, particularly PEANUT ALLERGY in preschool children. About 60 per cent of allergies appear during the first year of life. Cow’s milk allergy is one of the most common in early childhood. Most children grow out of it before they start school.

Inherited Allergy

Children who have one family member with allergy disease (including asthma or eczema) have a 20-40 percent higher risk of developing allergy. If there are two or more family members with allergy disease, the risk increase to 50 to 80 percent.

Most of the time, children with food allergy do not have parents with food allergy. However, if a family has one child with food allergy, their brothers or sisters are at a slightly higher risk of having food allergy themselves, although that risk is still relatively low.

Allergy is an Immune Response

Allergies are an overreaction of the body’s immune system to a protein. These proteins may be from foods, pollens, house dust, animal hair or mould. They are call ALLERGENS. The word allergy means that the immune system has responded to a harmless substance as if it was toxic.

Food Intolerance is a Chemical Reaction

  • Food Intolerance is a chemical reaction that some people have after eating or drinking some foods: It is not an immune response. 
  • Food Intolerance also does not show on allergy testing.
  • Food Intolerance can be a difficult concept for doctors as well. Sometimes substances within foods can increase the frequent severity of migraine headaches, rashes (such as Hives) or stomach upset.
  • Food Intolerance has been associated with Asthma, Chronic Fatigue and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
  • Professional diagnosis and confirmation of allergies is important in Australia, about one in 10 infants, or in 20 children up to 5 years of age and two in 100 adults have food allergies.


The preferable approach to the nutritional management of immunological food reactions or food hypersensitivities consists of dietary avoidance and the treatment of symptoms resulting  from inadvertent exposure. Nutritional supplements are needed when major food groups are being avoided.  This will ensure the optimum nutritional intakes are maintained. Digestive enzymes example: Dr MH zyame should be taken by individuals who seems to be sensitive to many foods. Bicarbonate of soda , Dr MH Proflora A, taken one hour after meals can improve symptoms. By improving digestion the allergenic load may be destroyed or digested more thoroughly.

Visit : www.drmecherlherbs.com
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FACEBOOK : drmecherlherbs for further enquiries.

Leaky Gut Syndrome

by Dr Mecherl Lim

MD (MA) Naturopath (ND),  Holistic Kinesiology



A possible cause of LEAKY GUT is increased Intestinal Permeability or Intestinal Hyperpemeability.

That could happen when tight junction in the gut, which control what passes through the lining of the small intestine, don’t work properly. That could let substance leak in the bloodstream.

People with Celiac Disease & Crohns disease experience this. Example,  Toxins in form of Medications, like Steriods, Antibiotics, Advil, Acid reducing drugs and environment toxins like Mecury, Pesticides & BPA from plastic. Stress and Age might also contributes to a Leaky Gut.

Digestive issues include Bloating, Gas, Diarrhea, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Cramp, Food Sensitivities, Aches & Pains.

Leaky Gut Sydrome aren’t unique. They are shared by other problem too. Leaky Gut often overlooked as a condition when under disgestive stress, and almost completely ignored if you have been diagnosed with another disease.

However, it is often a root cause of many health concerns,when the gut cannot properly digest nutrients.


A number of symptoms can arise from Neurological, Endocrine and Metabolic eg: Mood Changes, Memory Lapses, Irritable Bowel, Cancer, Loss of Energy, reduced

in Immune Response, Arthritis, Malnutrition, Bloatedness,

Chronic Fatigue, general Seasonal Allergies, Food Allergies, Intolerences, Skin Rashes (related to inflammation), Nutritional deficiencies, (improper absorption),

weakend immune system (from overexertion), Candida Over Growth, Constipation, ongoing Diarrhea, Atopy, Chronic Uticaria, Ulcerative Colitis, Acute Gastroenterities, Cystic Fibrosis, Exocrine Pancreatic Defects, Poor Digestion, Iron Deficiency, Bowel Cancer, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Ankylosing Spondylitis and Maldigestion.

When your immune system attacks particles that escape into the blood stream, regardless of whether they are harmful or not, the killer cells inadvertenly attack healthy cells in the process creating more inflammation thoughtout the body.

Symptoms may spread body wide, but still be attributed to other lifestyle factors. Gaps from intestinal lining widen from inflammation.

Leaky Gut SyndromeUntitled-2.jpg


  • We could support Liver Function to improve Detoxification such as 1st Phase MHT 5 Days Detoxification programme and followed by 2nd Phase MHT Detoxification as we need to check yeast infections and parasites as the person may be suffering from Achlorhydria, Lactose Intolerance and Pancreatic Insufficiency (refer http://www.drmecherlherbs.com)
  • Reinoculating the bowel with beneficial colonic bacteria, by supplementing with good bacteria count such as Proflora A.
  • Restabilising the gut epithelium to normal function.
  • Eliminate or reduce the insult to the gut barrier from xenobiotic or food allergies.
  • Follow an elimination diet or eliminate substances that produce toxic insult to the gut. 80% of individuals who have food allergens or intolerences have LEAKY GUT SYDROME.
  • Limit the uses of Alcohol, Antibiotics, Aspirin, and NSAIDS as they damage the gut barrier.
  • Reduce exposure to exogenous xenobiotics eg: pesticide, insecticides, and irritant chemicals, by eating more organically grown vegetables.
  • Increase the intake of high fibre foods, slippery elm, bananas and cabbage.
  • Increase intake of fish, cod, tuna, salmon or their oil.
  • Support the liver with supplements on phase II as above mentioned.
  • Glucosamine and Glutamine improve the bowel wall integrity and reduce bowel leakiness.
  • Improve digestion by supplementing with digestive enzymes

Professor Stephen Doughty Announced as New President & CEO for Penang Medical College (PMC)

Professor Stephen Doughty, President & CEO of PMC (middle), flanked by Vice President (Academic Affairs) and Registrar, Professor Kevin B. Nolan (right) and Professor Dr Rashid Khan bin Md Jagar Din, Head of Department of Public Health, Deputy Dean of Postgraduate Affairs & International Relations, Director of RCSI Health Research and UCD Public Health (International) Programmes at PMC

Professor Stephen Doughty joins Penang Medical College (PMC) as its fourth president and CEO. He comes to us from the position of Vice-Provost (Teaching and Learning) at the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, a post he has held since 2010.

“It is a privilege and an honour to be able to take over the leadership of PMC at this exciting time in its history with 20 years of strong and steady growth which have built PMC a solid reputation within Malaysia and beyond. I am excited at the opportunity to drive PMC forwards in the next chapter of its development and I look forward to working with PMC’s talented staff and students in that challenge.”

After a recent welcome lunch, Prof Stephen expressed his delight to be taking on the role of President and CEO at this exciting time, building on the excellent foundation laid by Prof Amir together with colleagues.

Professor Doughty takes over from Professor Amir Khir who has been with PMC since its early days.

Prof Stephen joined the School of Pharmacy at the University of Nottingham in 2001 having previously worked at the University of Bradford, UK. He obtained a first-class degree in Chemistry from the University of Essex and a DPhil in Chemistry from Oxford University, UK. His research interests are focussed on molecular modelling and computer-aided drug design with a particular interest in modelling membrane-bound proteins for rational drug design.

In 2005, Prof Stephen moved to the University of Nottingham’s Malaysia Campus (UNMC) to establish their School of Pharmacy. He became the Dean of the Faculty of Health & Biological Sciences at UNMC, later renamed to the Faculty of Science, UNMC. He introduced the first ever UK accredited pharmacy programme delivered in part overseas and as founding Dean grew the Faculty of Science to a strong six schools. Since 2005 he has sat on the Management Board at UNMC and has chaired the Campus Teaching Committee since 2007. In 2008 Stephen was awarded a Lord Dearing Award for Teaching and Learning. Stephen has had extensive experience helping to guide the strategic direction of UNMC and specifically to drive new teaching and learning initiatives in order to keep pace with developments in learning technologies and student expectations. He has had extensive experience of institutional quality assurance both in the UK and Malaysia, being an institutional auditor for both the UK’s Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) and the Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA).

Professor Hannah McGee, Chair of the Board of Penang Medical College and Dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, RCSI commented:

“On behalf of UCD and RCSI, we are delighted to welcome Professor Stephen Doughty as our new president & CEO to PMC. His expertise in the international higher education arena, in Malaysia and beyond, is very impressive and particularly opportune as we celebrate 20 years of success for PMC – and plan the stepping stones for success over the next 20 years. Professor Doughty will have the enthusiastic support of staff in PMC, alongside staff and senior administration in UCD and RCSI to support him in this new role”.

Penang Medical College is owned by the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) and University College Dublin (UCD). Students spend the first half of their medical training in Dublin and return to Penang to complete their medical training and receive a National University of Ireland medical degree. Together with postgraduate courses in Health Research and Public Health (International), PMC has almost 1,500 PMC medical graduates now working throughout Malaysia.

As PMC celebrates its 20th year anniversary this year, a series of events have been planned leading up to a final gala event to be held with UCD & RCSI here inPenang on the 4th of December 2016, Sunday. In commemorating achievements of the PMC community across the world, all alumni are requested to update their details for invitations via Facebook at /pmcpenang or the official PMC website.

Loh Guan Lye Specialists Centre 41 Years of Caring & Healing the Story Goes On…

Dr Mary Quah

CEO of LohGuanLye Specialists Centre.

“from Aspiration to Reality & Excellence”

Like many successful stories, it all started with a dream. The dream of the Late Datuk Dr Loh Guan Lye was to set up a private hospital ‘to reciprocate the support given to him by his patients and well-wishers over the years, and to also complement the increasingly overcrowded facilities of government hospitals. The hospital is a place where the public can seek specialist care and where specialists can practise good medicine’. The hospital then was named ‘The Specialists Centre’ which was later renamed LohGuanLye Specialists Centre (LSC) in1996, in honour of the late Datuk Dr Loh Guan Lye. The dream started in 1975 and the Centre is now 41 years old. Till today it is still family-owned and has been caring for more than three generations of patients.

The son, Mr Kelvin H Y Loh, Chairman and Managing Director, and the grandson, Mr Nicholas S W Loh, Executive Director, are also both successful Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologists practising in the hospital.

The unique story then continues with Dr Mary Quah, Chief Executive Officer, the driving force behind LSC, a non-family member, managing a family business in a One Big LSC Family way. She joined LSC in 1982 and has worked with three generations of the Loh family.

A visionary leader who leads with passion, Dr Mary Quah then made the dream into a vision and it became a reality with a lot of hard work and effort, dedication and commitment from everyone in LSC, making LSC to what it is today, one of the leading healthcare in the region, leading into the future.

In response to the earnest requests of patients for additional facilities and services, especially for cancer treatment, Dr Mary Quah was instrumental in the planning and development of the new wing in Macalister Road, from the architectural design and layout to the interior design and even the colour scheme with patient’s comfort in mind.  With this new wing, which was completed in 2009, LSC now has three wings, namely the Main Wing, Women and Children’s Wing and the Diagnostic Wing, offering a very comprehensive range of facilities and services including the treatment of cancer and heart diseases.

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With her leadership, LSC has overcome many challenges and has come out stronger than ever. LSC has also achieved many milestones, accreditations, various awards and accolades internationally and locally.

According to Dr Mary Quah, the culture of LSC is one of putting our heart and soul into everything we do, be proud of what we are doing and do our best. We strive to be the best and care for our patients with the best in human resource and technology to ensure good outcome.

Dr Mary Quah always believes in putting people first as ‘it’s the people who move an organisation’. When a leader leads an organisation with passion, and always does the right thing for the organisation and its people……that is the key success factor. Some of her inspiring phrases to the team include….’the business belongs to you, you take care of the business, we take care of you, the organisation grows, you grow’,  ‘everybody in this organisation is important, we do not employ unimportant people’, ‘customise your handling of people’. She takes pride in her team and is thankful to have such a caring team of dedicated and committed Management, Doctors and Staff in the organisation, as well as Mr Kelvin Loh and Mr Nicholas Loh for believing in the team and their support.

Most of all she is very thankful to all LSC patients for their trust and continuing support and for making LSC their ‘Hospital of Choice’.

Beyond Feeling Blue

By Ms. Chelsea Peh Mei Fung, Clinical Psychologist & Counsellor

B.Psy.(Hons) Counselling (UMS), MSc. Abnormal & Clinical Psychology (UK)

Karen is a 38-year-old experienced piano teacher who is very dedicated to her work. She is a talented piano teacher who has won many awards at the competitions. Karen used to think that she should get the award whenever there is a competition. Recently she was not nominated for an outstanding teaching award which she has been long waiting for. Suddenly she thought of her career life is in ruin and it felt as if the sky has fallen. She has withdrawn herself from other people, feeling depressed with a lack of interest in doing anything coupled with lack of motivation to go to work. She felt fatigue most of the day but had difficulty to fall asleep at night. She thought that everything was gone wrong in her life and it was her fault. She was feeling upset and wallowing in self-guilt for not being nominated for the outstanding teaching Award. She had thoughts about suicide as a solution to her unhappiness.

Everyone occasionally feels blue or sad. If one feels depressed for a prolonged period of time and it interferes with one’s daily life and normal functioning, or to the extent of developing physical problems, one is likely to have developed depression.

Depression is caused by a combination of biological, psychological and social factors. Depression is a “whole-body” illness, involving your body, mood, and thoughts. It affects the way you eat and sleep, the way you feel about yourself and the way you think about things. It is not a sign of personal weakness or a condition that can be willed or wished away. People with a depressive illness cannot merely “pull themselves together” and get better.

According to the report issued by the World Health Organization, over 350 million people around the world have depression. Up to 15 per cent of patients suffering from major depressive disorder eventually commit suicide. Depression can be reliably diagnosed and treated in primary care, but in many countries, there is less than 10% of those affected have access to effective treatments.

The frequency, severity and duration of symptoms may vary from person to person. According to American Psychiatric Association, DSM-V, if five (or more) of the following symptoms have been presented for over two weeks; at least one of the symptoms is either depressed mood or loss of interest or pleasure, it is highly possible that one has developed depression:

• Emotion

Markedly diminished interest in almost all activities, depressed mood, feelings of worthlessness or feeling hopeless, sad or empty. (note: in children and adolescents, can be irritable mood)

• Cognition

Recurrent thoughts of death, diminished ability to think or concentrate, or indecisiveness.

• Physical

Insomnia or hypersomnia, fatigue, decrease or increase in appetite, weight loss or weight gain.

• Behaviour

Social withdrawal, lack of motivation or suicide attempt.