Dengue Fever Symptoms & What Most People Don’t Know In Singapore

dengue fever singapore

Recently there is a huge spike in dengue cases in Singapore and in fact, just the first 5 months into 2022, the dengue cases this year are already more than last year!

Unfortunately, my wife also came down with dengue recently and it was during this period that I realized how serious is dengue fever!

My wife first started with fever and muscle aches on the first day. We didn’t suspect it was dengue because there were no rashes (in fact, the rashes only start to appear after the fever subsides on the 5th day).

We also noticed that dengue fever is very persistent in the first 5 days. The fever will keep coming back after the paracetamol (fever medicine, commonly known as Panadol to most people) effect wears off. So this is a sign to look out for.

During the first 5 days, my wife also experienced poor appetite, and abdominal pain (she can’t sleep on her side because of the abdominal pain).

She also felt her eye area painful. Her joint and body ache is also very disturbed and these symptoms also affect her sleeping quality.

dengue rashes

From the 6th day, her fever has subsided but rashes start to form on the body. It gets itchier from day 6 but it is more bearable (according to her) compared to the feverish symptoms in the earlier days.

However, according to the polyclinic doctors, it is after the 5th day that things can get more serious! This is something we were caught off guard for!

Apparently, the dengue virus will decrease the platelet count in the blood and if the platelet falls too low, internal bleeding may occur and it will require emergency medical attention if it happens!

Dengue patients (with low platelet count in the blood) may experience bleeding in some areas such as during brushing teeth, passing motion, and even washing face. You should seek medical attention when this happens!

Personally, I would suggest anyone to visit your nearby clinic if you suspect you have dengue fever based on the above symptoms. It is important to take a blood test from the 5th day to make sure your platelet count and other blood measurement are not too low.

My wife diligently went for blood test for four times before the doctor cleared her after the platelet count increased to the normal level. That was on the 10th day after she experienced the fever.

As you may already know, there is no medicine for dengue fever, even the doctors in polyclinic can only prescribe you paracetamol and anti-itch medicine and the rest depends on your body to fight the virus.

Based on our experience, there are some things that will help during this period:

  1. Dried orange peel – It helps to calm the stomach and improve the appetite. 
  2. Vitamin C – We believe it helps to increase platelet count. It can also help to relieve some stress during this period.
  3. Milo – This is a comfort drink and also provides some basic nutrients for the body.
  4. Water – lots of it to keep your body hydrated. If you can’t drink a lot at a time, then make sure you take small sips throughout the day. It is very important to keep your body hydrated during the dengue fever period!

My wife and I hope that this blog post will help someone out there who is experiencing dengue fever or don’t know if they are infected with dengue or not.

Take care and stay safe!

iHerb Promo Code SG (Updated May 2022)

iherb discount codes

I have been a iHerb customer since 5 years ago and I highly recommend their products not only because the price there is cheaper but also their range of products are organic as compared to the common brands we found in local department stores.

I always update this page with the latest iHerb promo code for Singapore customers. The code for current month is: ZIM276. You can enter this code every time you buy from iherb, you will save 5 to 10% depending on the products you purchase.

The following are some of my favorite products just to share with you in case you want to hit the minimum spending for free shipping.

  1. African Black Soap Bar – This help me save tons of money! Being one of the highly rated products on iHerb, I use this soap to clean my face twice a day. It helps to calm my skin and reduce acne problems. You can read the reviews here. This soap only costs SG$5 and can be used for months!
  2. XyliWhite, Toothpaste – A lot of the toothpaste in the market contains SLS (Sodium Lauryl sulfate) and paraben which are not good for our gums. I use this brand for several years already and like it very much. This product also has one of the highest reviews in iHerb.
  3. MegaFood Multi-vitamins – I have blogged about the importance of organic multi-vitamins before in this blog post. The only brand I buy nowadays for multi-vitamins is MegaFood. Click here to see a range of products they carry.
  4. Coromega, Omega-3 Orange Squeeze – This is a unique product. I don’t like to swallow big fish oil capsule so I prefer this brand where it is in gel form that I can easily squeeze it into my mouth and swallow it. This is my way of getting my omega 3 daily intake.

Do you have any iHerb products to recommend? You can share with me in the comments section =)

Just a reminder, the iherb promo code for Singapore is: ZIM276.

P.S. If you are located in other countries, you can also use the same code above to get the same discount. This code is universal =) 

Goji Berries Benefits in TCM and Who Can’t Eat Them

goji berries benefits in tcm

Goji berries have been one of the most commonly used foods in TCM and medicated diets.

In this blog post, I will share the benefits of goji berries, what it should be mainly used for, and what types of people should avoid eating them.

goji berries benefits in tcm

In TCM, the two organs that will benefit the most from eating goji berries are the liver and kidney.

Goji berries not only can strengthen the kidney, but they also have strong anti-aging properties. In TCM, the kidney affects how a person ages. A strong kidney will slow down the aging process in a person.

In addition to the kidney, goji berries also help to strengthen the liver. In TCM, the liver affects one’s eyesight, thus, goji berries have proven to help strengthen and protect eyes from weakening and diseases.

How to choose goji berries

If possible, always choose goji berries from China, NingXia (宁夏) as that place is the original place to harvest goji berries and its medicinal effect is known to be more effective than in other parts of China.

Goji berries from NingXia are also bigger and rounder when compared to those from other areas.

Difference between black and red goji.

You may have noticed that in recent years, there are also black-colored gji berries available in the market or TCM shops.

The main difference between black and red goji berries is that the black goji berries contain Anthocyanidin (花青素). Anthocyanidin is a natural antioxidant and it helps to protect the eyes as well.

However, if you boil the black goji berries, then the Anthocyanidin will be dissipated. Make sure you don’t cook black goji berries beyond 60 degrees celsius in order to retain the Anthocyanidin benefits.

On the other end, the red goji berries can be boiled to 100 degrees celsius as it does not contain any Anthocyanidin.

 

You should avoid eating goji berries if…

Goji berries generally have tonic effects, so it is best to avoid eating them if a person has flu symptoms or fever.

Goji berries also contain sugar so for people with diabetes, it should be consumed in a lesser or moderate amount.

 

This simple drink will help to strengthen your eyes and vision

There is a classic recipe that involves goji berries that help to prevent/treat many eye-related diseases.

Nowadays, many people are reading from computers or mobile devices’ screens in extended hours. This can result in dry-eey symptoms and make one’s eyes very irritated and sensitive. Hence, this simple drink recipe can help to relief this symptom. (But I would like to say here is that the best way is to reduce screen time if you find your eyes are drying and irritated )

The ingredients (for one person serving) are:

  • Water
  • Red goji berries (15g)
  • Dried chrysanthemum (15g)
  • Rock sugar (if you can’t drink it plain) 10 to 30g

First, wash and rinse the goji berries got a few minutes. Briefly wash the dried chrysanthemum.

Second, put both goji berries and dried chrysanthemum (& sugar if you prefer) into the water and bring it to boil. 

Once it started boiling, turn off the fire and let it cool down naturally (with the lid covered). Wait for 10 minutes before opening up the lid and serve.

Two things to note here.

  1. While bringing the water to boil, it is best to keep the lid on so that the effectiveness of dried chrysanthemum will not be dissipated to the air.
  2. Chrysanthemum can’t be boiled for too long as this will reduce its effectiveness. Thus, once the water starts to boil, you can turn the fire off and let it sit for 10 minutes before serving.

goji berries chrysanthemum drink

Dried chrysanthemum is known to dispel heat in the body especially in the liver so it works very well with goji berries to cool the liver (a person will have heat in the liver if he/she always sleeps late) and strengthen it.

You can drink this water for 3 to 5 times per week depending on how serious is the eye dryness. It is best to drink consistently for three days a week to see the effect.

I hope you find this blog post useful!

Dried Longan Benefits In TCM

If you want to find out about the benefits of dried longan especially in terms of TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine), then do continue to read further.

In this post, I will share what kind of people are suitable (and also not suitable) to eat dried longan.

The Chinese name of longan is 龙眼. If you direct-translate these two words into English, it means Dragon’s eyes. In this post, we will focus on dried longan (on the left image below), and not those fresh ones (right image below) that you see in fruit stalls.

You can buy dried longan in most TCM shops or supermarket.

In the records of TCM, it refers to dried longan because its tonic effect is much greater than its fresh counterpart.

Dried longan
Fresh longan

There is a saying in ancient times that in the North, they have ginseng and in the South, they have longan. This means that the tonic effect of longan is comparable to that of ginseng.

Dried longan is best known for its blood and qi tonic effect. This means it is very suitable to the following:

  • People feel weak (after illness, surgery or giving birth).
  • People who having difficulty falling asleep.
  • People who tends to be forgetful. 

Dried longan has a warm thermal nature. This means over-consumption will lead to heatiness. It is recommended to only consume 10g of dried longan.

In the record of TCM, dried longan is beneficial to the heart and spleen.  And in respect to TCM, the heart also mean our mind. And dried longan has a claming effect to the mind (heart) and this is why it helps people in falling asleep. 

If you want to be more specific on what types of people can consume dried longan, you can take the TCM body constitution test. And if your body constitution is blood deficiency or qi deficiency, then you are generally ok to take dried longan.

People who are not suitable to take dried longan

In general, if you are having flu symptoms, then it is best to avoid dried longan.

Also avoid eating dried longan if you are having sore throat.

The following body constitution types are not suitable to eat dried longan too:

  • Tropical.
  • Phlegm and dampness.
  • Yin deficiency.

How to prepare a morning porridge with dried longan

The following is a simple recipe for morning porridge that I make from time to time.

Its main benefits is to energize, provide qi and blood boosting to our body. It also has some effect of calming the mind and hence, improving sleep quality.

It is suitable for people who feels lack of energy, can’t sleep well and can help in strengthening the back and legs too.

Ingredients (for 2 pax):

  • Dried longan (10g)
  • Red dates (3 to 5 pcs)
  • Chinese chestnut (100g)
  • Rice – feel free to add some mixed grains too (1 cup).
I use this kind of chinese chestnut. It is like snack which you can just eat it without cooking.

Steps:

  1. Wash and rinse the dried longan.
  2. Remove the seeds inside the red dates and cut it into small slices.
  3. Wash the rice and bring it to boil. Note: You will need quite a bit of water here because we are cooking porridge. For me, I add as many as up to 6 cups of water to 1 cup of rice.
  4. Once the rice starts to boil, put in dried longan, red dates and chinese chestnut (I use those instant snacks ones so it needs minimum cooking). Wait till it boils again then bring the fire to smallest and let it simmer for 15 to 20 mins. Then it is ready to eat!
  5. As I am using thermal cooker, I only let it simmer for 4min then remove from heat and put inside the thermal pot and let it retain the heat for one hour before eating. I find that using thermal cooker is very gas efficient, instead of having the need to simmer on fire for 15 to 20min, I just need to let it sit inside the thermal pot for an hour. And thermal cooker does not require any electricity or fire to work!
Morning porridge with dried longan, red dates and Chinese chestnut

I hope you find this post useful! Let me know if you have any questions.