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If you have a loved one who is undergoing treatment for cancer, you must have heard the term immunotherapy as one of the most effective types of treatment for different types of cancer.

Here are some things you need to remember during the treatment.

The Immune System is the Key

Immunotherapy is sometimes called biotherapy because it’s supposed to use the cancer patient’s immune system to attack the cancer cells, although biologic therapy is just one form of immunotherapy. Generally, immunotherapy works by supplying your immune system with a boost to fight off cancer cells or stimulating your immune system to attack only the cancer cells.

The immune system is the key to fighting the cancer cells because they are responsible for keeping track of foreign substances in the body. However, the difficulty of this approach lies in the immune system’s failure to recognize the cancer cells that are growing out of control. Immunotherapy’s goal is to give the immune system a hand in fighting these cancer cells and to make it strong enough to fight back.

Other Treatments Should Not Stop

Most successful cases of immunotherapy have worked because other treatments were also applied, but there are types of cancers where immunotherapy is the only available option. Currently, there are four types of immunotherapy used to help cancer patients.

These include monoclonal antibodies, or man-made proteins that are modified to target only the cancer cells; cancer vaccines that are supposed to help the body fight off infections and prevent cancer; immune checkpoint inhibitors, or medication designed to recognize and attack only the cancer cells; and nonspecific immunotherapy, or treatments that help the immune system although it is not necessarily just to aid in fighting cancer cells.

One of the benefits of immunotherapy include the long-lasting remissions, because the body can be trained to remember to target cancer cells. In fact, the patient can choose to maintain immunotherapy even after the completion of the treatment.

Immunotherapy Works with Different Types of Cancers

Promising results of immunotherapy has helped patients with cancer in the brain, bladder, cervical, breast, colorectal, esophageal, head and/or neck, kidney, bone marrow and lymphatic system (leukemia), lung, liver, ovary, pancreas, prostate, and stomach. Immunotherapy is also beneficial for patients undergoing treatment for melanoma, lymphoma, multiple myeloma, sarcoma, and childhood cancer. The side effects of immunotherapy are generally mild and will not need treatment, unless they develop into severe problems.

Side effects include fever, loss of appetite, muscle pain, weakness, nausea and vomiting, rashes, bruising, and diarrhea. Furthermore, immunotherapy has also been useful in treatment programs for Chron’s disease and rheumatoid arthritis. Immunotherapy has been shown to help suppress the T-cell differentiation among people with the incurable Chron’s disease, and it can also slow down the progression and damage to the joints and tissues of people with rheumatoid arthritis.

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  • Filed under: Health and Wellness, Medical Treatment
  • Many people seem to think that eating a healthy diet automatically means spending more money than you already do on food. But contrary to what people think, this doesn’t actually have to be true. In fact, there are several foods that you can buy for cheap, which means there’s no reason why you shouldn’t make them staples in your weekly groceries.

    Here are the seven foods you should definitely add to the list the next time you go grocery shopping in Singapore:


    Tofu is a versatile ingredient that every kitchen needs to have in their pantry. Whether it’s steamed on its own, stir-fried in vegetable dishes, or added in soups, a healthy helping always helps cut down on cholesterol and reduce high blood pressure.

    Brown rice

    Compared to its polished, white counterpart, brown rice is much richer in nutrients such as magnesium, calcium, and fiber. This makes it great not just for those working out or dealing with diabetes, but also for getting as much nutrients as you can while sticking to a minimal calorie intake.


    Not only does yoghurt help regulate blood pressure and prevent stroke thanks to its high protein content, but it also contains all kinds of probiotics that improve your digestion and balance out the healthy microbes in your gut. However, keep in mind that it’s not for everyone – people who have lactose intolerance, for instance, may need to search for other options.

    Chicken breast

    Being a tried and tested source of lean protein for meat-lovers, a single serving of chicken breast is more than enough to keep you full. The best part about chicken breast is that it goes well with all kinds of dishes, whether it’s chicken salad or with whole-grain pasta.


    Grapes not only contain powerful antioxidants that help prevent many different types of cancer, but they also keep your heart healthy by reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease. Grapes can even boost eye health and protect them against various eye-related problems, such as glaucoma, cataracts, and even macular degeneration.

    Soy Milk

    A good alternative for people with lactose intolerance is soy milk. It’s made from soybeans, which not only contains omega-3 and 6 fatty acids to help you lower your blood cholesterol, but also protects your blood vessels and makes them more resilient.


    Watermelon is great for cooling down when it’s hot, but it’s not the only reason why you should have watermelon in your pantry as a staple. Aside from its 91 percent content, watermelon has all kinds of health benefits, from lycopene for heart health to potassium, which keeps calcium for stronger bones.

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  • Filed under: Food and Nutrition, Health and Wellness
  • Whether it’s a friend, classmate, co-worker, or even a relative, there will always be people who we simply don’t like. Maybe it’s because of their guts, or maybe they’re just plain annoying. Even so, if there’s not much of an issue between you two and you just want to maintain a healthy environment, there are tons of ways to do so. Here are only some of them.

    Just don’t show it

    Of course, there are varying levels to this. There’s a difference between not liking someone and actually hating them with a passion. If you’re still at a level where you just think of the person as annoying, then don’t think too much about it and just don’t show the other person that you don’t like them. Chances are, this person doesn’t really know that you don’t like him too. This is simply the best and easiest way to avoid tension and conflict.

    Stay calm and collected

    On the other hand, if the tension gets really high and you’ve already shown signs of hostility towards each other, it will be best to remain calm during a confrontation. But then again, this is easier said than done, especially if you really hate this person. Staying calm, though, will still be ideal in heated scenarios. For one, you can deliver your feelings and thoughts better. If you speak too emotionally, you won’t convey the message as effectively. You can also prevent the conflict from becoming an all-out fight.

    Keep in mind that you’re both different

    When you start to dislike someone, try to remember that they act the way they do because you are both different people. You won’t always share the same interests. There are some things he/she likes that you don’t. When you remember this, it’ll be easier for you to avoid thinking of someone in a bad light. But then again, you can’t really like someone instantly because of that. So, just think the way you want to but keep it to yourself.

    Don’t take the bait

    For the most part, the people we hate are those who try to pick on us or bully us. Whether it’s at school or at work, there’s always going to be that one person who does that. If you encounter a person who keeps belittling you, control your emotions and don’t be aggressive. Showing your anger will only make them feel more powerful. What you can do instead is to ask probing questions like what their problem is with you in particular. This will turn the spotlight on them shows them if they want you to treat them with respect, they should earn it.

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  • Filed under: Health and Wellness, Uncategorized
  • You might have grown up hearing that you should drink about 8 glasses of water a day. But how important is it really? In Singapore, the water is clean enough that you could drink tap water without worry. That means you can drink water freely all day. So should you do it? Here, then, are some of the important benefits of drinking enough water daily.

    1. The brain needs water

    Brain function is strongly affected by our hydration. This is simply because just like every organ in the body, our brain needs water to function well. Mild dehydration, for example, has actually been found to impair memory and brain performance. If we are dehydrated for a longer time, it can be severely detrimental to our thinking and reasoning.

    2. Our bodily fluids depend on it

    Digestion, circulation, distribution of nutrients, and all other bodily processes need water to function effectively. That is because all of these rely on our body fluids to do their work effectively. Also, it’s not just our internal organs that need water, even our skin and our eyes benefit from being hydrated. This is also why our brain tells us we are thirsty. To let us know that the body is running out of water.

    3. Improve physical performance

    Staying hydrated can clearly improve physical performance. Why do you think you get thirsty even if you do just jog for a while? When we lose too much water through sweat during physical activities, our muscle tissues get deprived of oxygen and end up losing energy. Hence, physical performance becomes limited. So, always remember to drink enough water before, during, and after exercise or any physical activity.

    4. Water cleanses the body

    In the present day, much of the food we consume is high in sodium. The recommended daily intake is only 1500mg-2300mg but on average, we ingest 3400 mg. This is mainly because of fast food and processed food like hotdogs and ham. When we consume too much sodium, our body won’t be able to flush everything out and they become toxins that are harmful to the body. In this case, water is important because it improves circulation and helps flush out all these excess toxins. Drinking enough helps cleanse the body thoroughly.

    5. It can help with weight loss

    Simply put, you should drink a lot of water before every meal to help reduce your food intake if you want to lose weight. Many people, when they hit the gym trying to lose weight, drink sports drinks instead of water. Because sports drinks are relatively high in sugar, it can limit your weight loss efforts in some ways. The logic behind water helping with weight loss is also simple and really obvious. As mentioned above, by drinking water, you won’t be hungry often so you’ll reduce your food intake.

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  • Filed under: Health, Health and Wellness, Uncategorized
  • What are Bunions?

    A bunion is known as a hallux valgus among doctors and is a type of deformity in the base joint of a big toe. Not only does it make your feet look uneven, it can also cause pain, swelling, and discomfort especially when you’re wearing the wrong shoes.

    Causes of Bunions
    Most doctors cannot pinpoint the cause of bunions in most patients with the condition, but they can locate where the deformity is. The big toe is angled towards the next toe, causing a bump to form on the side of the big toe’s base. As a result, the tissues and the skin surrounding the deformed joint, called the metatarsophalangeal joint or MTP, becomes thick. In some cases, a bursa or a sac filled with fluid forms on the joint. The joint deformity is called hallux valgus, causing the bones of the big toe to push the other toes due to its sideways angle. “Hallux” is a Latin word which means big toe, while “valgus” refers to the action of turning away from the body’s midline.

    Some doctors point to genes as a determining factor, while others are the result of joint problems like rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. The condition can run in families especially if most of the members have feet with low arches, loose joints, have flat feet, or have loose tendons. The structure and shape of the feet, such as the roundness of the metatarsal head,can also increase the risk of getting bunions especially if you’re not wearing the right footwear.

    Bunions in most women, however, are the result of repeatedly squeezing their feet into narrow, pointed-toe footwear that sometimes even come with high heels. This habit can put pressure on some parts of the feet especially the joints in the toes, because the body’s weight is pushed forward.

    Bunions also tend to develop among people whose occupations require hours of standing and walking.

    Treatment of Bunions
    The symptoms of bunions include pain, difficulty walking, inflammation of the base of the toe, infection of the toe, widening of the foot, difficulty finding shoes that will fit and feel comfortable, arthritis on the big toe, and deformation of the second toe.

    Some people ignore bunions, but it’s important to get it treated because the MTP is supposed to help the feet distribute the weight of the body evenly. Ignoring the pain can lead to other more serious problems in the future, such as hammertoes, corns, foot impairment, ingrown nails, bursitis, and misshapen joints.

    The simplest way to get rid of the pain is to wear comfortable shoes that are flexible, wide, and have correct support for the feet. You can also ease the pain with occasional cold compresses or the use of bunion pads and shoe inserts.

    The doctor might also recommend that you take over-the-counter painkillers to ease the swelling. For people with other joint conditions or those who suffer from severe pain, prescription-strength drugs are recommended, while some cases require physiotherapy and surgery.

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  • Filed under: Health and Wellness
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