yau teng yan interview with talking point

Interview with Talking Point (Channel News Asia)

I was recently interviewed by Channel News Asia for their latest episode on diabetes in Singapore. Shared my thoughts on how technology can solve some of the challenges patients face in managing their condition well. Check out the full video here. (Talking Point Episode 38, 16 Mar 2017) The biggest problem patients face is the lack of support. Diabetes is a disease that is with you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and it never goes away. Yet patients often spend less than 1% of that time with a health professional, the rest of the time they’re left on their own, self-managing their condition...

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is type 2 diabetes curable

Is Type 2 diabetes curable?

“Is type 2 diabetes reversible, doctor?” It’s a common question I get asked by many people. When I was back in medical school more than 10 years ago, we were all taught that type 2 diabetes is a chronic disease. Which means that it will be there with you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and it doesn’t go away. Essentially incurable. And once you’ve been diagnosed with diabetes, the best you can do is to try to manage it as best as you can. Today, the answer is no longer clear cut. In a positive way. Lets take a deeper look at what the science tells us. (You can find the full post...

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What you should know about diabetes and men

Did you know that men have a slightly higher chance of developing diabetes compared to women? This is according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This means that if you have the Y chromosome (yes, I’m referring to you men/guys), it’s important to know about diabetes symptoms in men. Many of them are similar for both genders. However, there are a few things that are specific to men. Also, if you’re itching to know why there’s a photo of Tom Hanks in this article, read on! I promise you, there’s a good reason. There are 4 key symptoms of diabetes mellitus – no...

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What you need to know about HbA1c

Have you heard your doctor or friends mention the term ‘A1C’ (or ‘HbA1c’) and wonder to yourself what in the world does it mean? Or its could be familiar word, but you never really understood what it meant for you? (and too embarrassed to ask your nurse or doctor) Fret not. After reading this, you’ll know exactly what A1c is, what your ideal A1c should be, and how you can estimate A1c using an A1c calculator/converter. And I promise I’ll make it easy for you to understand. What does A1c (HbA1c) stand for? HbA1C (used interchangeably with ‘A1c’) is a medical term, and refers...

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glycoleap yau teng yan

Why I Joined the Glyco Leap Team

(Reblogging – see the full, original post here) As a doctor, I often get asked why I left behind a promising career in medicine to join the team that developed Glyco Leap, a smartphone-based coaching program for people with Type 2 diabetes. Compared to a stable job as a practising clinician in the hospital, working in a young company means so much more uncertainty – with job security, financial renumeration, career progression, among others. Thinking rationally, it doesn’t make sense. But I believed in the vision to create a new, better healthcare experience for people...

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scaling people

Scaling Humans and Healthcare

A key project I’m involved in at work is an online program that helps people with diabetes and prediabetes make sustainable changes to their habits for better health. Our health coaches, in particular dietitians, are an essential component that contributes to the efficacy of the program. An oft-asked question I get is that health coaching is a high-touch human service – how do you scale that up? Or the famous ‘million’ question – Suppose you have 1 million participants, you can’t possible have enough dietitians or coaches to handle them all...

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The Ominous Octet – How Type 2 Diabetes Develops

Back when I was in medical school, some 7+ years ago, diabetes mellitus didn’t seem so complex.  There were less big words – no canagliflozins, exenatides, sitagliptins, and the newest kid on the medication block were the TZDs.  And we were taught that there were 2 main mechanisms for the development of diabetes: Insulin-resistance – your muscles and liver don’t respond well to insulin Lack of insulin secretion – your beta-cells have lost their function   Today, we know that there are at least 8 different mechanisms that play an important role in Type...

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ice cream

Personalising dietary advice – Banana vs Cookies

Have less ice cream or chocolates, and more fruits and vegetables – that’s great dietary advice for good health right? Wrong!  Well, at least for some people. Let me pose you a simple question : Which do you think will lead to higher blood glucose levels after consumption – a banana or several cookies? (let’s say they were Famous Amos)   Cookies of course!  (you say?) This group of Isreali researchers attached a continuous glucose monitor to 800 participants and measured their responses to over 40,000 meals. They found that there was high variability in...

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hello WDD from Singapore!

WDD : Healthy Eating is a Right, not a Privilege

World Diabetes Day is celebrated internationally on November 14 and this year it happened last Saturday. The key message for this year is that Healthy Eating is a right, not a privilege. How can we ensure that everyone has access to healthy food at reasonable prices? How can we provide everyone with the knowledge and motivation to eat healthily? Difficult problems indeed. The statistics are alarming : More than 400 million people around the world have diabetes today. A healthy lifestyle can prevent up to 70% of type 2 diabetes, equivalent of up to 150 million cases by 2035. A healthy meal...

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Living the diabetic life with the iHealth Align

Over the past week, I’ve been living out various elements in the lifestyle of a person with diabetes. I plan to keep this up for the rest of the month. As a clinician, I interact with people with diabetes mostly in a limited way – the short 10 minute consult, a quick review of their lab results and status and prescription of medications. There’s a much larger (and perhaps more important) aspect to managing diabetes – lifestyle and psychosocial – that I want to better understand, and be in a position to improve. So..I’ve been : Logging everything I eat on a...

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