Some News on Dieting

A quick one before I am off on another travel assignment

(MRI scan that reveals the fat against a normal sized person. Photo source: http://pgobeil.com)

I weighed myself this morning – I have lost 2 kilograms. I know I could have lost more if I had put more effort to exercise but that is a story for another time

In the past, I thought exercise was the only way to reduce my weight but after watching BBC’s Truth about Food, it changed my whole understanding of the losing weight and eating the “right” food.

In this series, the conclusion was outright simple – we end up becoming fat simply because we eat too much. There were other interesting facts too – take more calcium (low fat high calcium milk is a good source) to reduce more fat and always keep track of what we eat (this means no heavy food whilst watching TV), take more liquid food to keep the pangs of hunger away and take more protein. I started to change on how I take my food on daily basis.

Then I read Gary Taubes’ post in the Reader’s Digest on how wrong we have been when it comes to reducing fat by reducing oil intake and exercising. He says:-

Obesity experts have gotten things just about completely backward. If you look carefully at the research, fat isn’t the enemy; easily digested carbohydrates are. The very foods that we’ve been sold as diet staples – white rice, fat-free yogurt, plain baked potatoes (hold the butter), and plain pasta (hold the olive oil, sauce, and cheese) – actually reset our physiology to make us pack on the pounds. And the foods that we’ve been told to shun – steak, burgers, cheese, even the sour cream so carefully scraped from that potato – can help us finally lose the weight and keep our hearts healthy.

Eating less calories and exercising won’t keep people thin, it will just make people hungry. Paying attention to the hormonal and enzymatic regulation of the fat tissue will give us the answer for what causes obesity and what cures it.

I have been eating less at night, taking plenty of low fat, high calcium milk in place of rice if I am at home, doing simple abs exercise and lately have started playing badminton in the weekends.

This started several months ago and I managed to drop 2 kilograms only recently. It is not much but that got me thinking – Gary Taubes may be correct after all when it comes to diet. Kill that rice off and take low carb for a real reduction of weight.

That’s my target from now onwards…

Read Also:-

Reader’s Digest’s The Myths of Losing Weight

Un-hanging the N8

This happened a couple weeks…

(Nokia N8 is great but sometimes I forget that it is more than a phone – it has a very complex system running in the background. Image source)

I somehow had managed to screw up my N8. Sometimes I forget that smartphones are just like personal computers when it comes to installation of new software. It can very, very sensitive. After all, it has a complex Operating System, root folders, power hungry applications, etc. So, if one installs the wrong application (especially from an untested, dubious third party source) or installs it half way, it will screw up the system. And this is exactly what happened.

I was reading about a virus that was been roaming on smartphones in recent weeks. I used to have NetQin anti-virus application for my Symbian Anna powered N8 but I started to note that the anti virus application (I should take the blame for this – I have been playing with the settings) started to get into running of all other active applications. And then one day, I noticed it starts to connect to the Internet without my express authorization. Bloody hell, this was getting scary! So, I did what I suppose to do in panic when these things happen – I simply uninstalled the AV application and left with an unsecured smartphone.

(A robust AV app for smartphone is a must and to be fair, NetQin does the job rather well. It is just that incomplete installation and itchy fingers playing with the settings can create major havoc to the phone. http://dandroidtabletpc.com)

So when I read about the virus on the net and realized that I don’t have any AV on board, I started to look for an AV application – with NetQin being my last choice. There were not many choices out there when it comes to free based AV for Symbian^3 powered smartphones. NetQin was the only one I found that was available for N8 for free (although AV update will cost me but I was ok with that – the main application was still free). Not wanting to spend too much money on AV or Internet Security applications for smartphones for now, I hestitately installed NetQin back, hoping not to play with its settings this time around. But something else happened.

The installation did not complete as there was a disconnection of internet and I was left with a half-installed AV application which I was not aware immediately. Only when I decided to restart the phone, I realized this problem.

The phone starts up – the home page is shown but I could do anything else, the whole phone freezes. After a couple of tries, I noted that the installation starts up and this is causing the rest to freeze up. Then there is another problem as well – normally it is easier to stop this installation program from starting but since the phone freeze, I was unable to click on the application option. I was left with a dead phone now.

It was time for Google things up and it seems like there was only one choice – a hard reset but as many have warned, this should be a last option as it will format the whole phone and when restored, I am likely to lose Ovi Maps and Ovi Store (it needs a lot of manual installation for this and this too may not work 100%). There is another option of reseting to factory settings but it requires me to navigate through to the application menus and click on the option before the phone freezes over.

I tried the hard reset first – it was not possible to do the normal reset as the phone keeps freezing up. But the hard reset did not work – nothing happens. Then I remembered my sim card was still in the phone – I took it out and instead of hard reset, I tried the normal resetting for one last time.

When I restarted the phone, I noted that there was a longer gap before the phone freezes over. That small gap was just enough for me to disable the installation apps that kept running in the background whenever I started the phone. When I did that, I then realised that NetQin was also running in the background too (it was a mystery to me because I thought its installation was not complete) and due to frequent startup of the phone, NetQin had thought that the phone was under attack from virus and decided to freeze the phone to avoid further damages. I disable NetQin as well and proceeded with the safer and recommended method of resetting the phone to factory settings. Resetting was smooth and hassle free.

It did not take too long as well – once restarted, everything remain intact. I then restore back my contacts from my earlier backups using Nokia Ovi Suite (I had to do it twice – the first time; I wrongly included the restore of apps settings which did not work well. I reset and restore back but this time, excluding the settings). I got back my contacts updated into the phone and then proceeded to update to the latest Symbian Anna manually. And after that, I was home free.

I opted to leave any AV or Internet Security apps from my phone for the time being. Considering the risk – I may opt for a proper robust paid AV apps to be installed but not for now. Nonetheless, it was a scary moment – having the phone freezing up just like that and almost not having any way out to resolve it.

Read Also

Nokia N8 Firmware Update 2

Playing with Nokia N8

Steve Jobs: 1955 – 2011

(We may not own an iPhone, iPod, iPad, iMac or download from iTunes but in one way or another, the way we use technology and some of our personal gadgets these days have greatly influenced by Steve Jobs ideas, innovation and footprint for better user friendly and usability designs. Image source: Wikipedia)

Click these posts from Fast Company for interesting insights on Steve Jobs:-

What Can Steve Jobs Still Teach Us?

What Made Steve Jobs So Great?

Learn Steve Jobs Presentation Skills

Case for Namewee

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VUd7NHg50bs]

Is he loud? YES

Does he use foul, strong language? YES

Does he get all too excited on something that looks trivial? YES

Does it look like he is arrogant and rude? YES (as one would say “kurang ajar”)

Does he using the wrong side of the National language? YES (he pronounces “orang” as “olang”)

BUT at the end of the day, does he have a valid point too? YES

Put yourself in his shoes. You assemble a wide range of skillful actors from different background, culture and religion and spent the time and money to produce a movie which gets good reviews. Then comes along a columnist (from a mainstream newspaper) who then tells the readers not to watch the movie – it is not because the movie was bad but rather because of the director’s past characters. Don’t you feel pissed off too?

As Namewee had said in his video, it is only fair if the newspaper had commented on his movie after they have watched it. But that did not happen – the comments were made without watching the movie and not on the movie. That is not right and is very unprofessional.

Take a look at Roman Polanski – the famed film director & producer. He is wanted in the US on the charge of unlawful sex with a minor and before he could be sentenced, he escaped to France and remains the same till this day. And yet, his World War 2 movie “The Pianist” went on to win 3 Academy Awards (including Best Director) in US. If one had been harping on Roman Polanski’s characters and had been telling others, not to watch the movie due to what he has done in the past, they would have been asked to go back and screw themselves.

It is the same case for Namewee. The man may have its faults but it is not right to judge his movie, his talented actors and his hard working film crew based on solely what he has done in the past. And whilst we are reading the various responses to his video, we get this desperate argument (I guess since the elections is around the corner and they are running out of ideas) from pro-UMNO blogger in defence of the newspaper:-

His constant haranguing over what he does not like in the Malays (in this case disguised as criticism of Utusan Malaysia), using the foulest of Chinese expletives, will not get any reaction at all except anger and retaliation.

Yes I agree that Namewee focussed his video on Utusan Malaysia but Utusan is not just any newspaper. For many Malays, especially the three million UMNO members, the Utusan is an icon which represents more than just a newspaper. The Utusan is also identified with the modern Malay struggle.

(Source)

What this pro-UMNO blogger is implying? An attack on a newspaper owned by a Malay based political party is an attack on the Malays itself? In the past, too many idiots have wrongly identified real, critical issues with the infringement of Malay rights, attack on Islam or the institution of the King and in the end; those pertinent issues get swept under the carpet without any proper resolution.

Remember the incident of escalating construction cost of the new palace? Remember the protest when the State Government decided to appoint a non-bumiputera to helm PKNS despite the merits? Remember when the issue of families caught in religion conversion was brought up? It is the same thing now.

And mind you, Utusan is not an angel too. They have been in trouble before with their racial laced and politically charged statements. But we are not harping on their “past” acts here. What is important is how one would response to Utusan and Namewee in particular?

Yes, Namewee attacks Utusan but it is not because he is being anti-Malay as being implied by some people. He attacks because as an artist, he deemed what Utusan has done as something unfair. It is only fair to judge his work and if there are shortcomings, raise it up in the right way (whack him hard on it if you need to).

But if you decided not to see his work because you have issues with him on a personal note, then you should just keep quiet and abstain from watching his work. The last thing you want to do is to go around the world, telling people not to watch the movie due to the director’s personal characters and things that he has done in the past.

That is the underlying message in Namewee’s video. And that is why; I think despite the “kurang ajar” manner Namewee lashes out on Utusan, he has a valid point.

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