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Vegetarian Diet in Thalassemia Patients!?

Posted by Goh Chun Hui (Jack Goh) on July 1, 2015 at 10:20 AM Comments comments (566)

Recently, I have a thalassemia friend telling me that he is planning to switch to a vegetarian base diet. Wanting to opinion, what I think about it? He did not tell me, the reason why he decides to switch it though. But I am guessing the few reasons why someone will want to switch to a vegetarian diet is because they want to be eating healthier, in order to have a better health, losing weight or maybe even just not wanting animals to be killed for their food, which are less likely the reason.

I personally don't see much problem for a thalassemia patients going vegetarian. Not that I will go for it myself, but I would rather have my usual meal and vegetables and can also have vegetarian mean, if I want to.

The only reason, I am worry about for someone who has been eating a meat diet for his whole life, out of the sudden having to switch to a vegetarian diet, might find themselves in the temporary situation possibly facing some symptoms such as feeling weaker, more tired and restless or even breathlessness in the short run. Until their body are comfortable with the changes of their diet. More or less if any of the symptoms you encounter, will to worsen. Definitely, with any hesitate go straight to your doctor and inform them what is going on and what you can do about it.

Lastly, for all thalassemia patients, always be sure to inform your consultation doctor first, before doing any changes to your daily diet what so ever.

Increasing Hemoglobin Level though Juicing

Posted by Goh Chun Hui (Jack Goh) on December 15, 2014 at 3:00 PM Comments comments (54)

One of the most effective fresh fruit and vegetable juice out there, that's known to increase hemoglobin level other than the wheatgrass juice is the beetroot juice. There is some cases being said by patients, that it could replace the needs for blood transfusion in younger children. Whether it's true or false, it hard to say. But, certainly there is no harm giving it a try.

Beetroot juice itself, might not be tasting as good as you might expect it to be. As it was been said " Bitter medicine is always the most effective medicine." But, what if you are worried that your children, might not like the taste of Beetroot? As some children might vomit, once they get to taste Beetroot itself. Certainly, there is other thing you can do to enhance it, by making it taste better like having it along with carrot, tomato, lemon or other fruits that you think your children may like or will make it taste better.

Nutritional Supplements for Thalassemia Children

Posted by Goh Chun Hui (Jack Goh) on November 30, 2014 at 12:30 PM Comments comments (75)

Baby/Children are often not eating as much food, as they should. Needless to mention, thalassemia patients included. Causing parents to be very concerned, whether their child is getting enough food and nutrients. Especially, in situation when they are not gaining as much weight, as they should or worst losing it. Worried it will affect their overall growth.


Without a doubt, every parent will always give their children the best of all they can. Therefore, they will try to look for solutions, tips or anything on what they can do to enhance their child situation or condition.


After some research, most parents will come into conclusion, that the best thing they could do is to ensure their kids are getting enough nutritions. The way is giving them additional supplements on top of their daily nutritional consumption from food products. Therefore, they will start asking people around, that they think will know what supplements is best to have.


Regardless, what you decide to give your child, always make sure to inform your child doctor about it. So, the doctor could give you more or better suggestions on your decision. Even if anything will to happen, that could be a result of the supplements you are giving your child. At least, the doctor will know what is going on, and can take necessary action from there.


So below is a list sample of some supplements, a mother is giving to her two years old thalassemia major child. Remember, you don't have to do exactly what she is doing, as every child needs and situation might be different. This is just an example, hoping to give you a brief idea on what types of supplements, people can expect to give their child on a regular daily basis.



  • Vitamin A - 600 IU


  • Vitamin B Complex Syrup - 5 ML



  • Vitamin D3 - 85 IU



  • Vitamin E - 0.3 IU



  • Zinc - Unknown


  • Cod Liver Oil - 0.3 ML or 1 to 2 Tablet Capsule

That's it for this update, take care (:



Posted by Goh Chun Hui (Jack Goh) on November 12, 2013 at 1:15 AM Comments comments (150)

Drinking coffee shouldn't be that bad for thalassemia major patients. Although it might contain more amount of caffeine thn tea, but the antioxidants level in coffee is also higher than tea in other words. Taking a little amount of caffeine shouldn't be causing much harm.

Coffee not only contain higher amount of antioxidants level than most other foods and drinks you can find out there. There's also tons of health benefits you can find out there on coffee, based on research studies. That coffee not only could reduce your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, but it's also known that Coffee is great for your liver.

Just the two benefits of coffee, I mention above. Who knows can even assist a little on the prevention of thalassemia related health problem. Diabetes and liver problem in thalassemia major patients, both are mainly cause by the iron overload in the pancear and liver alternatively. But it can also be cause by thalassemia condition themself.

 So, I don't see why thalassemia major patients can't be drinking coffee everyday. Of course not to drink too much of anything, just because it taste good and contain some health benefits. I personally are drinking 1-2 cups of coffee too most day other than tea for many years, and did not faced any health disorder related to drinking coffee or side-effects of taking caffeine.


Posted by Goh Chun Hui (Jack Goh) on July 21, 2013 at 1:05 PM Comments comments (171)

In order to gain mass/weight, you will need to eat more quality foods that your body needs, and not quantity. Eating a lot of junk foods, does not help to to gain mass or build muscle. You can eat whatever you want at first when you first trying to put on some mass, but eventually you will want clean up your diet a little by eating foods that serve you and your body. Don't be afraid of trying healthy food, just because you might be afraid the taste of it might be awful. That's absolutely not true. There are so many different variety food, I am sure there are something you will love...If you are trying to gain mass, start off by first having all the basic nutrition food that you need on a regular basis, then overtime you will want to increase the quantity of the food so to gain mass. It may be difficult at first, if you are trying to switch from a totally junk food diet to having a nutrition healthy food diet. What you can do in this case is trying to have more nutrition in your daily diet and at the same time eating what you want, and overtime eating more of the nutrition food, eventually you want to be on a completely nutrition daily food diet.


Do not skip any meals in your daily diet. Remember to have all your meal on time.

Don't be a Fussy or Picky eater. Try and Eat different variety of foods.

Do not take Mass Gainer. Mass Gainer do not help you to gain mass quickly. Mass Gainer is a product used for people's who do not want to put in the hard work, effort and consistency, but want the reward of someone that is doing it the right way in getting mass. Nothing Good in life ever come from cheating or having shortcut. Mass gainer are all packed with sugar, there is nothing in there that will serve your body.


Posted by Goh Chun Hui (Jack Goh) on July 15, 2013 at 4:20 AM Comments comments (407)


What is Leukemia ?


Leukemia is a cancer of the bone marrow and other blood forming organs. It involves the multiplication of immature white cells at the expense of blood elements.



What is Thalassemia ?


Thalassemia is an inherited blood disorder which is caused by an abnormal gene. A person with Thalassemia is unable to produce normal hemoglobin in the blood.


What are the causes of Leukemia ?


As for most other cancers, the majority of the leukemia is of unknown cause. However, certain conditions are known to cause leukemia; these include exposure to radiation, chemicals, inherited conditions such as Down syndrome etc.


What are the causes of Thalassemia ?


Thalassemia is an inherited blood disorder which is caused by an abnormal/missing gene. A person with Thalassemia is unable to produce normal functioning hemoglobin in the blood.


What are the symptoms of Leukemia ?

The symptoms can be vague and non-specific. However, most patients present with the one of the following symptoms. Fatigue, breathlessness on exertion, bleeding nose or gum, easy bruising of skin, fever, weight loss, poor appetite etc.

What are the symptoms of Thalassemia ?


The symptoms vary with severity of thalassemia/anemia. The common presentations include lethargy, shortness of breath, palpitations, giddiness and pale appearance.


What are the different types of Leukemia ?


There are many types of leukemia. In general, it can be classified into acute and chronic and these can further subclassified into various types according to the cell of origin and their appearances.


What are the different types of Thalassemia ?


There are two types of Thalassemia:


(I) Thalassemia minor (Thalassemia trait)


(II) Thalassemia major.


A person who has inherited one Thalassaemia gene is said to have Thalassemia minor (Thalassaemia trait). He or she is healthy and leads a normal life. Most people with Thalassemia minor do not know that they have it. However, the affected persons can pass on the abnormal gene to their children.

Thalassemia major is a severe form of anemia. The affected person has inherited two Thalassemia genes, one from each parent. He or she may look normal at birth but within 1-2 years of life, will suffer from severe anemia, which leads to poor growth and development as well as a shorter lifespan.

Is Leukemia an inheritable disease ?


There is little evidence for genetic factors. Although there are many reports if leukemia in the same family, their significance is unknown.


Is Thalassemia an inheritable disease ?


(I) If only one parent has Thalassemia minor, the following can occur:


•50% chance of having a child with Thalassemia minor


•50% chance of having a normal child


•none of the couple's children will get Thalassemia major.


(II) If both parents have Thalassemia minor, the following can occur:


•25% chance of having a child with Thalassemia major


•50% chance of having a child with Thalassemia minor


•25% chance of having a normal child.


The chances are the same with each pregnancy, no matter how many children the couple may have.


How is Leukemia diagnosed ?

This usually requires several blood tests and a bone marrow biopsy.


How is Thalassemia diagnosed ?


Thalassemia screening involves a simple blood test and is available at all Polyclinics.


How is Leukemia treated ?


Leukemia is usually treated with chemotherapy (chemicals which have anti-cancer effects) The treatment course varies with different types of leukemia and also the age of the patients. In selected groups of patients and disease type, bone marrow transplant can improve cure rate.


How is Thalassemia treated ?


The treatment will usually depend on the underlying cause of Thalassemia/anemia. Blood transfusion may be required in certain situations, and can sometimes be life-saving in a severely anemia patients.


Can Leukemia be cured ?


In the past, leukemia was amoung the most difficult of cancers to cure. However, methods of treatment have greatly improved over past 10 to 20 years and more patients with leukemia, especially the younger age group, have been cured if this disease.


Can Thalassemia be cured ?


The only cure available for Thalassemia Major Patients currently is a Blood Stem Cell transplant from a donor who shares the same tissue type.


But unfortunately, most patients are not a suitable candidate. As they do not have a suitable sibling, a parents match or an unrelated donor to offer them the chance of life.



Posted by Goh Chun Hui (Jack Goh) on February 24, 2013 at 4:30 PM Comments comments (75)

Running to support Thalassemia. Haemophilia and other blood illnesses

Date of Event: 16th March 2013 (Saturday)

Time: 5pm to 10pm

Venue: Jurong West Stadium

Website: (To Register)


Running to support Thalassemia, Hamophilia and other blood illness


Patients face lengthy period of time battling the illness. Along the way, some of them start to doubt and thoughs of giving up starts to build within them. We plan to have a physical show of support to them. We will have volunteers running throughout the whole event. This is to show patients that we are willing to "run" with them throughout their treatment period. Hence, the theme: "A MILE FOR A SMILE"


We are recruiting 200 runners to run 200 miles within 5pm to 7pm. The reason for this run is to encourage the patients to face their life journey ahead with hope.


Awarness booths for blood related illness 


Awareness booths will be set up by KKH Hematology Department. This will help the public to gain better understanding of the blood related illness.


Celebrities Sport Club


Celebrities Sport Club will support the event by playing a football match with our Youth Team. The football game will commence at 7.30pm to 9.30pm. Hopsital staffs, patients and their families are invited to watch the game.


Other activities    


  • Goodie bags for the volunteer runners
  • Invitation of Minister to grace event

Crowd Control and Safety Measures


Volunteers would be on site in helping of crowd control and also first aiders would also be engaged throughout the event for the safety of the "runners".


Posted by Goh Chun Hui (Jack Goh) on December 30, 2012 at 8:50 AM Comments comments (72)

Taking foods in diet that contains antioxidant properties, such as eating fruits and drinking pure green tea or antioxidant supplements is known to reduce free radical damage cause by excess iron.

Long-term regular blood transfusions in Thalassemia Major Patients, that result in iron overloading could lead to inflammation of the pancreas, liver and heart. Which are the  consequences result to diabetes, cirrhosis, heart failure and other related disease.


Posted by Goh Chun Hui (Jack Goh) on December 26, 2012 at 10:35 AM Comments comments (73)

There are actually no obvious signs and symptoms on minor iron overload in Thalassemia Major Patients. But as the iron levels are in the process of increasing, some signs and symptoms below might began to occur.

  • Persistent Tiredness
  • Numb / Joints Pains
  • Bronzed Coloration of the Skin ( Due to Melanin Deposition )

The triad of bronze skin, enlarged liver, diabetes mellitus and even enlarged of heart is presented in cases of severe iron overload.


Posted by Goh Chun Hui (Jack Goh) on December 19, 2012 at 10:50 AM Comments comments (273)

One of the main factor that contribute to the persistent tiredness in Thalassemia Major Patients is the low hemoglobin level. During the period of low hemoglobin, thalassemia patients tend to feel tired more easily and in other words need to have longer hours of sleeping time. These triedness feeling will usually retrieve, soon after patients blood transfusion session. Where hemoglobin is being replaced in patients body.

So what are the other cause of persistent tiredness in Thalassemia Major Patients, when their hemoglobin level is within the normal range? Persistent tiredness can also be sign and symptoms of iron overloading. Therefore it's important for patients to take into consideration both their hemoglobin and iron level when targeting their cause of persistent tiredness.