Monday, December 19, 2011

Malaysian Restaurants in the United Kingdom

Did you know that Malaysian restaurants and eateries in the United Kingdom are sprouting like mushrooms after the rain (tumbuh macam cendawan selepas hujan)?

Among them is the Rasa Nusantara Restaurant & Cafe in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, where my family and I frequent the past few weeks (pics). Apart from that, Hamzah F. M. Nordin, an MBA Student from the University of Wales UK, who is doing a research on

"Consumer Behaviour of Malaysian restaurants in the UK"

has a list of the popular Malaysian eateries in the UK. 

Most of these Malaysian restaurants are located in London, except otherwise stated. 

Here's the list in alphabetical order:

2. Blue Rays (Rochester)

3. Bonda Cafe

4. Bunga Raya Bar & Restaurant (Surrey & Cheshire)

5. C & R Restaurant

6. Champor- Champor

7. Chikara

8. Delima restaurant

9. Ferringi Bay

10. Georgetown

11. Georgetown (Nottingham)
12. Georgetown (Stratford Upon Avon)

13. Gourmet Garden

14. Jaya House

16. Kampung

17. Kampung Ah Lee (Edinburgh)

18. Kaya House

19. Kelong Restaurant (Croydon)

20. Kiasu

21. Lime Leaves

22. Lotus (Manchester)

23. Makan Cafe

24. Makan La (Oxford)

25. Malaysia Kopitiam

26. Malayba (Peterborough)

28. Malaysian Delight (Birmingham)

29. Malaysian Delight Buffet (Norwich)

30. Matahari

32. Melur

33. Ming Court

35. Olio’s Brasserie

36. Pelangi

37. Puji-Puji

38. Pulau Pinang (Birmingham)

39. Rasa Sayang

40. Rumours (Glasgow)

42. Secret Recipe

43. Sedap

Sedap on City Road, London
44. Selera

45. Street Hawker

46. Tuk Din
47. Yum Yum
48. 54 Pinang

Tuk Din, pic taken from

Check the list here to get the address & contact number of these restaurants

Also check out the MasterChef Live 2011 video: 

As part of his role as Malaysia Kitchen ambassador, Tim Anderson highlighted the merits of Malaysian food and demonstrated how to cook Nasi Goreng. In addition to Tim's demonstrations there was a Malaysian product market, stocked with essential ingredients for cooking Malaysian dishes.

Check out: Malaysian Restaurants in London

Also check the Malaysia Kitchen website, which it claims to be home to 50+ Malaysian restaurants in the UK. This website is also packed full of recipes, events and promotions on Malaysian restaurants and eateries in the UK.

Related : August 2012 Family Visit to London

Is your immune system ready for winter? Pune Speaks Up

Published: Thursday, Dec 15, 2011, 12:48 IST 
Place: Pune | Agency: DNA
During winters, our immunity tends to get low, making us vulnerable to various ailments like common cold, flu, joint pain, constipation and respiratory infection. Speak Up finds out how to stay fit and healthy during this season
A well balanced diet is the key to a healthy body
Your immunity can be innate or acquired. The innate immunity prevents entry of foreign bodies into the tissues. It eliminates virus before it cause any disease.
Acquired immunity only occurs in response to an actual infection as the immune system adapts itself to fight these foreign bodies and rid your body of potential disease. The best way to avoid cold is to prevent it in the first place. Wash your hands frequently using soap and water or alcohol-based sanitizers. A well balanced diet, which includes carbohydrates, proteins, fats and micronutrients, is the key to maintain a healthy immune system.
In winters, keep your body warm. If your body is cold, it will have a hard time to fight germs. If people around you have cold, ask them to wear a mask so that when they cough or sneeze, they won’t spread the germs. If you are sick, stay at home and keep your distance from other people to prevent the spread of flu.
It is also important to exercise regularly for a healthy working body. Also, drinking lots of fluids helps to flush out the toxins from the body. Drink at least 8 glasses of water per day. Lemon and orange juices have high amounts of vitamin C, which boost the immune system. The use of anti-viral drugs can also help to protect you against contracting flu.

—Dr Rohinee Motwani, dietician
It is best to avoid antibiotics to treat viral infectionsChildren are the most affected due to seasonal changes and they are prone to respiratory tract infections. The most important thing for parents to realise is that cold, cough and other respiratory tract infections are viral in origin. Therefore, it is best to avoid antibiotics and steroids to treat the disease. Using these will only hamper the child’s natural immunity system.
Most of the viral infections stimulate the natural immune system and it is of utmost importance that it is developed without disturbing it. There are instances where viral infections stimulate pneumonia and other diseases. In such cases, parents should watch out for symptoms such as flaring of the nostrils and 
retraction in the front of the neck and chest.
If these symptoms are noticed, the child must be taken to see the doctor immediately. Respiratory infections usually settle down in 4-5 days. They can easily be cured by using home remedies. Adults suffering from cold and cough should stay away from children as they easily catch infections.
—Dr BS Ratta, paediatric surgeon
The body dehydrates during winters, so have lots of waterIt is important to build your immune system by following a well balanced diet. Certain food items like fruits, vegetables, wholegrainsand nuts help in building a strong immune system.
Also, vitamins A, C and E, iron and zinc help in boosting immunity. 
All the yellow and red fruits and vegetables are rich in carotenoids that get converted to vitamin A in our body. Intake of vitamin C is equally important and is found in citrus fruits, amla and guava.The body tends to dehydrate during winters so it is important to keep it hydrated with water and soups. Drink tea and coffee in moderation as these are diuretics. Along with a balanced diet, sleep well and do some yoga.

—Rekha Sharma, nutritionist
Avoid viral illness with the help of natural remediesYou can gear up for the winter season by adopting a proper lifestyle. One option is to drink homemade herbal tea every day. One can make it using ginger, cinnamon or nutmeg, among other things. Also, inhaling steam helps to clean your respiratory tract.
Regular exercising is also of utmost importance. It rejuvenates and helps the body recuperate faster from illness. I also tell my patients to take care of the six tastes. The sweet taste must be kept proportionate while the others (sour, salty, bitter pungent and astringent) suit the body more during winters. Viral illnesses can be easily avoided with the help of natural remedies and precautions.

—Dr Sachin Nandedkar, Ayurveda Specialist
Wear warm clothes and avoid cold food items in this seasonThe most important advice I give to all my patients is to stay warm during the winter season. Wear warm clothes and avoid cold food items in this season. Keeping warm avoids direct exposure to a lot of illnesses. Also, cold food items multiply the viruses already present in your body.
On the other hand, anything hot or warm kills germs. Another important thing is to maintain good hygiene. For example, wash your hands regularly. It helps in getting rid of germs. A lot of upper respiratory illnesses can be prevented with care and caution. But it is important to treat cold and cough otherwise it could lead to serious diseases.

—Dr Seemab Shaikh, ENT surgeon

Friday, December 16, 2011

Ariff Alfian Rosli, the reigning queer of Malaysian infamy in the UK (& British Isles)

Bow over Fatine - Pondan Malaysia Glamer di UK, here comes the bigger kick ass problem ever created by a Malaysian in the UK and British Isles and by any standard at the moment.

At a time when it would be better without something that could put us Malaysians living abroad in embarrassment, this Malaysian gay student is creating ripples and making waves that could re-ignite intellectual wars between conservatives and the liberals again.

The father of this Malaysian, Rosli Harun (56) is at loose ends with the problems created by his son, Ariff Alfian Rosli. Ariff, a medical student supposedly studying under a Petronas scholarship in University College Dublin (UCD) in Dublin, Ireland has 'disappeared' in the British Isles. He has refused to meet his family members or the Malaysian embassy officials since 2009.

Ariff did his preclinical studies in 2003 - 2005 and later clinical (2005 - 2008). He is supposed to graduate in 2008 but has yet to finish his studies. He needs another 38,000 Euros (RM160,000) for another academic year to complete, but unfortunately Petronas has refused to extend his stay here. Petronas, on the other hand claimed RM890,000 from his father as the first guarantor as Ariff had violated the loan agreement with the former.

In early 2009 Ariff came back home and made an attempt to complete his studies locally and it was at this junction his relationship with his father declined. In June that year he left the country for Ireland again and was not heard of ever since. 

Since 2009 Rosli Harun and his wife Kamariah Hashim, 55 went eight times to Dublin and Universiti College Dublin (UCD) in search for their son, but couldn't locate him. 

On 13 December  Utusan Malaysia reported on the missing of Ariff and related the father's worry of his son's safety and aqidah (religiosity). The news report: Pelajar Perubatan Hilang di Dublin.

On 14 December, Malaysian Envoy to the Ireland, Datuk Ramli Naam revealed that the Malaysian Embassy and Wisma Putra cannot disclose the whereabouts of Ariff Alfian in Ireland due to the Dublin Personal Data Protection Act. The Immigration Dept of the Republic of Ireland also refused to reveal facts on the boy due to the said act. The immigration status of Ariff Alfian in Dublin is said to be valid and all his documents including visa is also valid. 

The latest news on Ariff as virally reported on several blogs the past few days is that he is now married with the name Jim Alfian in a glorious ceremony with a youth named Jonathan in Ireland.

I do not know whether to congratulate, commiserate or sympathize to the family on this boy's marriage to another man. But one thing for certain is that Jim Alfian has reign over the glamour of Fatine for being the Malaysian boy of infamy in the UK and the British Isles.

The pictures tell the story.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Folate fortification in food – a necessary nutrient or a potential health hazard?

Folate is a form of naturally occurring folic acid in the body. Folic acid is also known as vitamin B9, vitamin Bc or folacin.
Vitamin B9 (folic acid and folate inclusive) is essential to numerous bodily functions. The human body needs folate to synthesize, repair and methylate DNA as well as to act as a cofactor in biological reactions involving folate.
Folate is especially important in aiding rapid cell division and growth, such as in infancy and pregnancy. Children and adults both require folic acid to produce healthy red blood cells and prevent anemia.
Folate was isolated in 1941 from spinach and named after the Latin word folium (= leaf). Although the initial impetus for research on folate metabolism was to find a cure for anemia, it was soon recognized that the administration of folate enhanced the growth of existing tumors and that folate metabolism may be a promising target for anticancer drug design.
A lack of dietary folic acid leads to folate deficiency, which is uncommon in normal Western diet. This deficiency can result in many health problems, the most notable one being neural tube defects in developing embryos. However, a complete lack of dietary folate takes months before deficiency develops, as normal individuals have about 500–20,000 µg of folate in body stores.
Common symptoms of folate deficiency include diarrhea, macrocytic anemia with weakness or shortness of breath, nerve damage with weakness and limb numbness (peripheral neuropathy), pregnancy complications, mental confusion, forgetfulness or other cognitive declines, mental depression, sore or swollen tongue, peptic or mouth ulcers, headaches, heart palpitations, irritability, and behavioral disorders. Low levels of folate can also lead to homocysteine accumulation. DNA synthesis and repair are impaired and this could lead to cancer development.

Folate is now commonly used by food producers to fortify our diet, normally in grain products. In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration mandated the folate fortification of grain products in January 1998 and it was also implemented in Canada. The primary driving force behind this policy was the recognition that periconceptional folate supplementation in addition to normal dietary folate intake significantly reduced the incidence of neural tube defects (NTDs), one of the most common birth defects.

Initial data suggest that this public health measure was successful, resulting in a substantial reduction in the prevalence of neural tube defects.

Although these reports were reassuring in that the population fraction with low serum folate was minimized (from 16% to 0.5%; ref. 16), they also raised concerns that fortification exceeded the original daily intake target by as much as 2-fold (17-19). This intake of folic acid from fortified food (f100 to 200 Ag/d) coincides today with high consumption of nutritional supplements in the U.S. population (f400 Ag/standard multivitamin) as well as increased availability and marketing of nutrition bars, drinks, and other fortified foods (often supplemented at 400 Ag/serving), resulting in a markedly elevated intake of folic acid in the population from multiple sources (

Food fortification rather than supplementation in planning pregnancies was deemed necessary because:
1.     There is a perceived failure of public health efforts to influence those persons most at risk
2.     The neural tube closes during the fourth week of gestation, a time when many women are unaware of their pregnancy.
3.     Due to concerns that folate fortification may mask symptoms of vitamin B-12 deficiency, primarily in the elderly population, the level of fortification chosen was estimated to provide on average 100 µg additional folic acid daily with only a very small proportion of the population receiving >1 mg. The upper limit of 1 mg was a round number chosen by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) as unlikely to produce masking, although the folate intake that produces masking is controversial, with some arguing that intakes <1 mg may cause this effect. (

However other studies suggest that the maximum benefit of fortification has already been achieved. Over the past few years, the US population has been exposed to a significant increase in folate intake, for which there are essentially no data on safety.

Folic acid is generally regarded as safe, but there is concern that folic acid fortification may have adverse effects in subpopulation groups not originally targeted for fortification. In this regard, an emerging body of evidence suggests that folic acid supplementation may enhance the development and progression of already existing, undiagnosed premalignant and malignant lesions.

The accumulation of good news—ranging from the established reduction of neural tube defects to the putative prevention of several types of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and possibly dementia—has made it seem that folate is a ‘‘wonder drug’’ that is not only inexpensive, but also safe for use as a chemopreventive agent.

However, recent research on the effect of this nutrient on animal shows that folate could be detrimental to human health and could even cause cancer. Although research to date supports several of these claims, these warnings have appeared to be true, challenging us to adopt a more nuanced view of folate use and raising the need for investigations of the potential health hazards of excessive intakes.

Recent data also suggest the need to distinguish between naturally occurring folates and folic acid, the synthetic form added to supplements and fortified foods. This further complicates the already complex story of folate as a potent vitamin. The potential masking effect of folate on vitamin B-12 deficiency is not only a traditional measure of toxicity, it is a very serious concern from a public health viewpoint because of the high prevalence of vitamin B-12 malabsorption in the elderly.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The AUKU is unconstitutional - who would have thought of that?

On 31 October 2011 the Court of Appeal has set aside the earlier decision of the Kuala Lumpur High Court on 28 September 2010 which ruled Section 15 (5)(a) of the Universities and University Colleges Act (UUCA) as not violating the Constitution after deducting their originating summons.

Section 15 (5)(a) is a provision in the UUCA or AUKU (1971) which restricts students from expressing in support of, or opposing, any political party. In the landmark 2-1 majority decision, the three-man panel held that the Section was unreasonable and violated freedom of speech.

Who would have thought of that?

Four student leader of the new generation.

Watch out for the rising political stars of four ex-UKM Political Science Club Supreme Council leaders who have made headlines by winning a historic legal battle against the government of Malaysia vis-a-vis challenged the political status-quo of the present powers-that-be.

They are Muhammad Hilman Idham (President), Ismail Aminuddhin (Vice President), Azlin Shafina Adzha (Secretary General) and Wong King Chaì (Exco). The four was slapped with disciplinary action for being present during the campaign for the Hulu Selangor parliamentary by-election on April 24 last year.

The 'students' have since graduated and moved on with their lives.

See the excitement after the court ruling:

The Bernama news report: Appellate Court Declares UUCA Provision Unconstitutional

The Sun Daily: UUCA Unconstitutional