Health benefits of coffee vs tea [infographic]

Since both tea and coffee have health benefits yet a few drawbacks, why choose? I love coffee, but enjoy green tea in the morning. I should probably balance it out more with less coffee and more tea, but in case you were wondering why drink either, here’s a great infographic. (click on the image for the full graphic with more information)


Steve Jobs says Apple board grants him medical leave of absence

Steve Jobs says Apple board grants him medical leave of absence

Apple CEO Steve Jobs today sent the following email to all Apple employees:


At my request, the board of directors has granted me a medical leave of absence so I can focus on my health. I will continue as CEO and be involved in major strategic decisions for the company.

I have asked Tim Cook to be responsible for all of Apple’s day to day operations. I have great confidence that Tim and the rest of the executive management team will do a terrific job executing the exciting plans we have in place for 2011.

I love Apple so much and hope to be back as soon as I can. In the meantime, my family and I would deeply appreciate respect for our privacy.


Movember: Donating my face (growing a cheezy moustache) for a month in support of prostate cancer – want to help?

This Movember, the month formerly known as November I’ve decided to donate my face to raising awareness about prostate cancer.  My donation and commitment is the growth of a moustache for the entire month of Movember, which I know will generate conversation, controversy and laughter.

I’m doing this because 4,400 men die of prostate cancer in Canada each year and one in six men will be diagnosed during his lifetime.
This is a cause that I feel passionately about and I’m asking you to support my efforts by making a donation to Prostate Cancer Canada. (I’m not Canadian but this was the team with which my staff agreed to join)

To help, click this link and donate online using your credit card or PayPal account

All donations are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law.

For more details on how the funds raised from previous campaigns have been used and the impact Movember is having please visit:

Thank you in advance for helping me to support men’s health.

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Our puppy, Bailey, has parvovirus – a deadly disease affecting dogs

Last Thursday we took home a beautiful purebred American Cocker Spaniel; we named her Bailey. Born in November, she’s only 10 weeks old. We drove quite far to see her, the breeder had a litter of 6 total, and we were able to see the mother on the spot. Our friends came with us and actually bought her sister as well, named her Daisy.

She had her first round of shots and papers to certify her pedigree. All seemed right in the world.

On Friday, she vomited a number of times – we assumed it was due to the change in diet (the breeder didn’t give us any extra food to ease her into a new diet). Saturday she was fine, playful, and didn’t have any vomiting whatsoever.

Sunday was a different story. She was lethargic, and in the morning had yellow diarrhea quite full of mucous. (hope you’re not eating). I thought it would be much better to take her in to the vet rather than wait and see. Within minutes we found out she has parvovirus aka parvo. Her sister is also positive with it.

According to Wikipedia, parvo is:

“a contagious virus mainly affecting dogs. The disease is highly infectious and is spread from dog to dog by direct or indirect contact with their feces. It can be especially severe in puppies that are not protected by maternal antibodies or vaccination. It has two distinct presentations, a cardiac and intestinal form. The common signs of the intestinal form are severe vomiting and severe haemmorhagic (bloody) diarrhea. The cardiac form causes respiratory or cardiovascular failure in young puppies. Treatment often involves veterinary hospitalization. Vaccines can prevent this infection, but mortality can reach 91% in untreated cases.”

The vet has her on an IV and said she’ll be hospitalized for about a week, with her sister, Daisy in the next cage over. As of today, she has bloody stools and is vomiting still. The vet is giving her a 50% chance of living.

I’m keeping my cool for now; hoping that things will turn out alright and she’ll pull through. But I’m obviously quite upset with the breeder. When I contacted him, he simply claims that all of the puppies were healthy when I saw them and that they must have contracted parvo after we brought them home. Excuse me? I picked her up on Thursday evening – within 12 hours she was vomiting and within 60 hours was hospitalized.

Parvovirus has an incubation period of 5-14 days, so it’s not even possible that she got sick AFTER we brought her home! The breeder also stated that parvo is an airborne virus – another fallacy. He simply claims that he’s not a vet and can’t guarantee the health of the puppies.

I’m pissed to say that least. After spending a significant amount of money for the puppies, we are now responsible for the expensive treatment they require – all within days of bringing them home. It’s also not fair to the puppies – how traumatizing to be quarantined at only 10 weeks of age.

How should I handle this. Being new to the Philippines I really have no idea if there’s any justice for something of this nature. This breeder should NOT be allowed to sell his puppies. What action can I take?

I know, let’s concentrate on Bailey and Daisy’s recovery. But still – this isn’t right.

Here’s the ad:

Earning supplemental income: Part 2 – Ideas and brainstorming

Space raceThis is the second part of a series I’m devoting toward making supplemental income. Consider it a glimpse into my own experimentation. If I crash and burn, you’ll get a front row seat.

After posing the question I received an abundance of helpful and interesting responses. The majority of which were centered around photography. A list of suggestions (in the order they were posted):

  • Wedding photography
  • Side business from passions
  • iPhone app creation
  • Publish a photo book
  • Indonesian stock market
  • Photography courses
  • Online business
  • Seek ways of saving instead of earning

These are great ideas, and many will fit together to formulate a more complete project. Note: iPhone app design would be awesome, and I’m not counting it out yet, but it’s simply not my strong-point. If we further refine these suggestions, we’ll be left with three broader concepts:

  • Photography related
  • Online business
  • Stocks / investments

While finding ways to save money is a vital component to advancing your financial health, I see it on a similar plane as dieting without exercise. Both are required for more effective, long-lasting results.

  1. Photography related: It’s quite obvious that I have a strong passion for photography. While I realize I have such a tremendous amount to learn still, it’s something that I never tire of. This is critical in my mind. There are many routes this could take.
  2. Online business: I’m a tech guy. I know my way in and out of many applications and can navigate the web with ease. I enjoy digging into new social media, teaching myself new applications, and geeking out with podcasts and tutorials. I’m not an expert in any one area, but am proficient in many. I’ll digest this one more below.
  3. Stocks / investments: This ties in with savings – it’s often a necessary part of financial health to find some way to invest. I have traded stocks in the past and done quite well. I’ve also lost my ass playing the stock market. To be truly confident in stocks again, I think I’d require full energy devoted solely to the research and constant flow of information that is needed to succeed (and luck). However, I’m willing to seek out more assistance and perhaps take it slow (i.e. not go crazy with individual tech stocks). I am somewhat limited by living in Indonesia in terms of investments, but am curious what is possible.

To reiterate on my stronger points, I’m left with two areas of focus: photography and the internet. Let’s dissect these focus areas into the various options. Feel free to suggest more. I’m also going to add to these with my own ideas.


  • Publish a photography book
  • Stock photography
  • Print sales
  • Portrait photography
  • Modeling agency
  • Wedding / pre-wedding photography
  • Photography courses / teaching


  • Blogging for profit (not this blog): photography related, camera gear, tech, Indonesia, etc
  • Online business: ?

John brought up an important point in the comments from the previous post: “ideas are abundant, anyone can come up with ideas to make money. execution and sales are the hard slogging part… it doesn’t really matter how good a photographer u are if you do not work hard at selling your work.”

This is where the fun begins – pushing photography to the next level without selling my soul. As I stir these ideas around my mind, feel free to contribute any more, offering advice or experiences you’ve had with any aspects of these points. Have you created such a business? Have you submitted work to stock agencies? Have you tried publishing a book? I (and others) would love to learn from your experiences.

To be continued…

Part 1 of this series is located here.

My friend's sudden heart attack and his quick thinking (only 38yrs old)

My good friend and former co-worker (he left Indonesia last year) startled us all with news that he’d suffered a sudden heart attack after playing basketball. This is a man who has less than 10% bodyfat, eats well, and exercises on a daily basis. We were all absolutely shocked by the news, and it was only his quick thinking that saved his life. Unfortunately, I can’t imagine what would have happened had this occurred in Jakarta, considering the lack of emergency systems, horrendous traffic, and less than consistent health care. It was a story too close to home considering the passing of my boss and friend in 2006, who collapsed right before me, and whom we carried to the ER to no avail.

If nothing else, please take a moment to learn from his story. Here’s a video of him being interviewed on the news as he thanks the people who helped save his life. Originally posted here.


It was a February afternoon and Jeff Campbell had just finished a basketball game.

In shape, and only 38, Campbell had noticed, but didn’t pay much attention to pains in his left arm over the previous week.

On his way home from the game, Campbell couldn’t help but recognize the pains had suddenly become much more severe.

He took a shower and couldn’t stop sweating.

That’s when Campbell knew something was terribly wrong.

“I think I knew when my heart started beating pretty rapidly that this was something I couldn’t take care of myself,” said Campbell.

Campbell then grabbed the phone and dialed 911.

“I was very glad I called when I did because I can’t recall how quickly it was that they came, but I knew within a minute or two I was unconscious and I wouldn’t have been able to call,” said Campbell.

When Parker paramedics arrived at his home, Campbell was unconcious.

Doctors say he suffered from a cardiac arrest due to ventricular fibrillation.

Paremedics performed CPR and electroshock cardioversion.

Campbell’s cardiologist at Parker Adventist Hospital says Campbell’s call saved his life within a matter of seconds.

“Not many people his age would make a call and say, ‘I’m having a heart attack, or something is wrong with my heart. The paramedics, EMTs, as they arrive they play a crucial role, because they now know exactly when Jeff had his cardiac arrest. They also have enough history to give us some insight to what to do,” said Dr. Barry Molk.

Molk was just one of several health professionals who gathered at Parker Fire District Station 74 on East Lincoln to receive a big thanks from Campbell.

The group also included the emergency room team and members of the Parker Fire Department.

Dr. Molk credits the well-coordinated effort between the paramedics and hospital staff immediately following Campbell’s call.

During the resuscitation, the team of Parker paramedics recorded Campbell’s EKG and recognized that it was a heart attack that caused his cardiac arrest.

The team then activated a cardiac alert system by calling the emergency department at Parker Adventist Hospital.

Still, Dr. Molk says it all started with Campbell’s call.

“It’s always a surprise when someone this young has a heart attack. I think it was very astute on Jeff’s part, because a lot of people would ignore this and simply say it’s gotta be something else,” said Molk.

The American Heart Association reminds people of the warning signs for heart attacks.

First is chest discomfort that could last more than a few minutes, or it could go away and come back.

It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.

Second is discomfort in other areas of the body like the arms, back, neck, jaw or stomach.

The third warning sign is shortness of breath without chest discomfort.

Other signs could include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.

For more information on warning signs and or treatment, you can visit the American Heart Association’s Web Site at

Care for the sick tests Indonesia's health

The following article is quoted from UPI-AsiaOnline. Ripped off from Irene’s Facebook link to the article.

Rangga, a 4-month-old boy weighing only 1.4 kilograms (3 pounds), was diagnosed as suffering from malnutrition by the local doctor in the West Java town of Kedaton, Indonesia, and was referred to Arjawinangun Hospital in Cirebon Regency for further treatment. The request for treatment was rejected by the hospital, however, and the child was taken home.

The reason given for denying treatment was that the parents do not have the “blue card” called Askeskin, an insurance program for the poor. Later the father, accompanied by the head of the rural administration of Pegagan Lor Village, Kliwon Rusman, and with a letter certifying their impoverished status, went to the same hospital and was turned away yet again.

Meanwhile, the head of the healthcare office of Cirebon Regency said that a patient can claim their right for medication even without Askeskin if a reference letter from the local health clinic is produced. Is this simply a matter of bureaucracy?.

In another case, a 22-year-old mother named Iis died in her home in Cipondoh in Tangerand District in mid-March simply because the family did not have the money for medication. Juanda, her husband, admitted they did not have the money to take her to the doctor or the hospital. His daily income of 15,000 rupiahs (less that US$2) would not be sufficient to take her to the doctor. Given his poor status, the neighbors would not lend him the money he needed either. Consequently, she died at home after complaining of severe pain for a week.

In yet a third case, a similar death due to starvation took the life of a pregnant mother and a child toward the end of February this year in Makassar in South Sulawesi.

In addition to these three examples, the situation is very severe in East Nusa Tenggara in West Timor, as more than 90,000 cases of malnutrition have been reported. Moreover, throughout the country, an estimated 13 million children under the age of 5 are considered malnourished in Indonesia. These statistics beg a significant question: How many of these children will later die as well?

The Indonesian government ratified the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights two years ago, and with this ratification it recognized the right to an adequate standard of living for its people, which includes adequate food, clothing, housing and healthcare. Furthermore, in Article 28H of the Indonesian Constitution, the right to health is well affirmed: “Each person has a right to a life of well-being in body and mind, to a place to dwell, to enjoy a good and healthy environment and to receive medical care.”

While this right is enshrined in the Constitution for all Indonesians, it is not equally realized by everyone; for although the state has introduced various healthcare programs, the poor, as demonstrated in the above cases, who obviously should be the beneficiaries, have been excluded.

The simplest complaints relate to malpractice or bureaucratic lethargy. It is reported that in a number of cases the officers assigned to provide the required reference letters needed to be bribed. This practice, it is said, has resulted in well-to-do people in the cities becoming the beneficiaries of these healthcare schemes — designed by the state as the anti-poverty healthcare program Askeskin or the insurance scheme PT Askes — instead of the people who really deserve and need them.

Thus, if the people’s right to heath is to be safeguarded, there are a few major issues that need to be addressed. In the health sector, malpractice, negligence and accidents have been noted for a long time, and there have not been any effective remedies because these healthcare deficiencies have not been properly defined nor have standards been established. Thus, none of the complaints can be investigated.

Even if a complaint is made to the police, there are no national standards against which the behavior of any of the practitioners can be monitored or assessed. Everyone in the health sector is expected to be guided by their conscience. No service sector can function efficiently purely on the basis of a good heart or a good conscience though. There must be standards to comply with and mechanisms for efficient remedies in case of violations.

The question of health is increasingly associated with the country’s wider economic worries. If the statistics of 13 million children under 5 are a fair reflection of the actual situation, a host of questions must be raised, including the role played by the state in the provision of adequate and healthy food to its citizens.

At a recent meeting, the coordinating minister for people’s welfare, Aburizal Bakrie, announced that more than 60 million people will be targeted in a special poverty eradication program to be initiated this year. It is expected to include a social program focused on education and insurance for low-income families, an empowerment program for rural people and a small-scale business program.

Given the culture of corruption in the country, it is important that the government explains in detail the process of implementation and the agencies involved. There must be strict accountability and transparency in order to avoid corruption. Moreover, strict visible standards must be stated with mechanisms for reporting malpractices and speedy remedies to avert calamities of death and starvation. Hunger and illness are not something that can be addressed at one’s leisure. Delay can mean only one thing: death.

While 60 million people, or one-fourth of the population, are brought under the poverty eradication program, there is a need to examine the country’s economic policies to assess their impact on the poorer sections of society. They must be seen from the perspective of providing adequate food, healthcare, education, housing and security as well as ensuring people’s dignity. It would be tragic if people are only viewed as the recipients of social welfare. It is time that the dignity of all is taken as the highest priority, thereby securing their participation in all matters pertaining to their rights, including their right to health.

Human species 'may split in two' as predicted by HG Wells

A fascinating article on BBC makes some startling predictions about the human race. Far-fetched or not, it’s worth a read. Guess that would make the debate on Indonesian women and Western men a null topic.

Evolutionary theorist Oliver Curry of the London School of Economics expects a genetic upper class and a dim-witted underclass to emerge.

The human race would peak in the year 3000, he said – before a decline due to dependence on technology.

People would become choosier about their sexual partners, causing humanity to divide into sub-species, he added.

The descendants of the genetic upper class would be tall, slim, healthy, attractive, intelligent, and creative and a far cry from the “underclass” humans who would have evolved into dim-witted, ugly, squat goblin-like creatures.

But in the nearer future, humans will evolve in 1,000 years into giants between 6ft and 7ft tall, he predicts, while life-spans will have extended to 120 years, Dr Curry claims.

Physical appearance, driven by indicators of health, youth and fertility, will improve, he says, while men will exhibit symmetrical facial features, look athletic, and have squarer jaws, deeper voices and bigger penises.

Women, on the other hand, will develop lighter, smooth, hairless skin, large clear eyes, pert breasts, glossy hair, and even features, he adds. Racial differences will be ironed out by interbreeding, producing a uniform race of coffee-coloured people.

However, Dr Curry warns, in 10,000 years time humans may have paid a genetic price for relying on technology.

Spoiled by gadgets designed to meet their every need, they could come to resemble domesticated animals.