AH HER BAH KUT TEH RE-VISITED & LIPID & STATIN CONTROVERSIES
A few days ago, a non doctor forwarded me a mail about the removal of “cholesterol” from “Naughty List” of US government and American Heart Association and dietary association. Normally I ignore such mails, because a check in the web with the associations would raise doubt where the recommendations had come from. What was stated in the mail about cholesterol metabolism was not new; including the fact that we still have a lot to learn about lipids and treatment; science is not god’s gospels, it changes with new evidences and facts, and, certainly could be fallible or wrong. It’s interesting that patients like to educate doctors, or to update them on the latest gossips. It is equally interesting that doctors have prejudiced views on Bah Kut Teh, which is pork or meat. These medical evangelists often equate BKT with cholesterol, and a sin not to object people who loves the dish. The truth lies in between weight, exercises or physical activities , diet, genetics and treatment (statin or non statin).The arguments are the figures for each, such as BMI, LDL-C levels and dosage of medications; taking into consideration medical status (Diabetes, heart histories, age, sex). The statin and other medications are not angels; the drug industries ( statins, co-enzyme Q, Vit. b 6) do influence expert committee and Marketing quite significantly, and often it’s hard to know whom to believe. Whenever I walked into a BKT shop, and ordered a pork knuckle dish, eye brows were raised. I simple love taking collagen. There was no real study on the co-relation between consuming BKT and lipid levels. From anecdotal experiences, it’s just meat consumption. The Chinese tea with the meat could have antioxidant or lipid lowering effect. Many of my patients consume more than 30 such meals per month, and their cholesterol were no higher than the average person. Similarly we found slim or vegans with high cholesterol, and we equate it with genetics, again also without any study. At 70 years, and healthy, who cares what the experts claimed on both sides said, I took my meat and lipid, plus exercises and live my vision of what a good life should be – global balance!
That slim and pretty lady consumes BKT daily. No one will doubt her BMI; her exercises is probably her regular walk around customers during business hours. This is a branch of Ah Her (behind Parkson Supermarket), and is very crowded daily, despite the rain in the morning. If u visit Malaysia, don’t miss BKT; Rm10 per bowl is fairly reasonable. I recommend it to any visitor without hesitation. (There are over 300 such shops in Klang; try a few to discover your taste preference. Ah Her is thick, juicy gravy, small amount given; others are more herbal, or with other spices)