Health

The got-to-knows for modern women - Louisa Mak & Jessica Ng share well-being tips

With higher accessibility to health information, women in the modern world now take a more proactive approach on personal health management, while different stakeholders of our community are also speaking up to promote women's health.
Author Bowtie Team
Date 2022-09-13
Updated on 2022-09-13
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Chapter 1 - Diet: Do we have to strictly control our diet to stay fit?Chapter 2 - Exercise: Too busy to work out?Chapter 3.1 - Prevention: Mild illness symptoms could develop into serious disease if left unhandled?Chapter 3.2 - Prevention: How important are body checkups?Conclusion: You are not alone on the path of women's health, let us be the engine of your wellbeing!

Simply put, women’s personal management comes down to three cores – diet, exercise and disease prevention, but it is often easier said than done. We understand that even with the awareness of an ideal healthy lifestyle, well-being is often compromised by Hong Kongers who live a fast-paced life, such as going for a dieting plan, having a workout routine or taking body checks regularly. With concerns on this issue, our co-CEO Fred Ngan talked to Louisa Mak and Jessica Ng, female role models of our society, to share with us their path to beauty, health and success.

Fred talks to Louisa & Jessica on personal health management

Chapter 1 - Diet: Do we have to strictly control our diet to stay fit?

Louisa 分享獨門飲食控制方法。
Louisa shares her secret on dieting

Fred: I often hear from female friends that they hope to stay fit, like yourself, Louisa, while living a busy life. They tried hard to curb their food cravings but usually gave up halfway. As we all know, over-dieting can cause much harm to our bodies, would Louisa please share with us your secret in dieting?

Louisa: I didn’t want to stress myself out too much on dieting, which in turn let go of all the joys in our lives, instead, my goal is to strike a balance. I rate food based on its “cost-performance ratio”, not comparing the price to its tastiness, but its calories and the level of happiness it can bring me.

Fred: Like the concept of having a “cheat day”?

Louisa: They are similar, for example, I usually go for “zero sugar” drinks that come with my meal, because sugary drinks take up my calorie quota but won’t bring me much happiness. Likewise, I also skip salad dressings, because I choose salad to save the quota for the next meal that can lighten my day, allowing myself to be worry-free while having the less healthy food that makes me happy like rice with barbecue meats. Apart from that, I also pay attention to my nutritional intake such as getting more protein and taking supplements when necessary.

Louisa’s eating strategy is similar to a “saving” strategy, distributing money (calories) wisely to avoid overspending (ingestion). Balance is the vital factor here, it is recommended to take into consideration the balance between healthy eating and mental health before following Louisa’s advice, it’s the only way to make the eating habit sustainable. If it only takes a few small adjustments in your daily life to enjoy delicious food occasionally, why not?

Chapter 2 - Exercise: Too busy to work out?

Jessica 鼓勵大家盡量分配時間進行運動。
Jessica encourages us to squeeze in some time for workouts.

Fred:  Can’t beat a10A-holders when she’s even smart in eating, Louisa really does put thoughts into what she’s eating. How about Jessica, I know being the Director of Licensing and Compliance at Kitchee requires you to follow the soccer team everywhere, would you have any workout tips to share with our female audience?

Jessica: Let’s shout out to Louisa when it comes to workouts! She exercises frequently, and I heard she always visits the swimming pool before going to work. Swimming is indeed a great cardio workout! Career women like myself live up to different roles in our daily lives, and I also have friends who need to constantly deal with work pressure, and come home to their family duties such as preparing meals, doing chores and taking care of their children and family members. This leaves them little spare time for exercises. With that being said, I still try to squeeze in a 30-minute cardio workout two to three times a week, and it does make a big difference!

Fred: So we really need to make time for exercising even with a full schedule?

Jessica: I’d say the key is to properly arrange your schedule. Of course, the idea is to spend more time exercising, but even the smallest amount of exercise is still better than nothing. Even as short as a 10-minute workout would still make a difference to your wellbeing.

Louisa: I like to exercise together with my friends, because our peers do affect each other inadvertently. Especially for partners, if your partner has an unhealthy lifestyle, it could potentially give a negative impact on your own lifestyle as well.

Louisa also recommends friends to look out for each other, for example, consider exercising together for meet ups, and try eating out less.

Jessica’s unique background brings her more exposure to professional athletes which deepened her appreciation of the benefits from exercising. In fact, the fast-living pace stresses out most Hong Kongers, making it difficult to develop a workout routine. However, it is suggested to try some convenient exercises if condition allows.

Chapter 3.1 - Prevention: Mild illness symptoms could develop into serious disease if left unhandled?

Louisa & Jessica 分享親身經驗提醒大家正視身體警號。
Louisa & Jessica remind everyone to listen to the signals our bodies are trying to send us with their personal experiences.

Fred: Such practical tips you two have shared with us. I wonder if any of you have experienced health problems in the past?

Louisa: Touch wood! So far I haven’t had any serious health issues, but I sometimes do get burnt out by stress. I remember experiencing some symptoms of Herpes Zoster (Shingles) when I was once very stressed. Fortunately, a family member happened to be a doctor and gave me medical care in time. Although we all have moments when we believe small problems will eventually go away, it is usually not the case. I appeal to everyone that it is best to deal with the problem when it is still small, to prevent greater suffering in the future.

Fred: Louisa has the right attitude! And are there female diseases particularly of your concern?

Louisa: Speaking of this, it is essential to mention the two major female cancers – cervical cancer and breast cancer . Luckily, there have been various sources in the society promoting the information on these two types of cancer. Nowadays, everyone grasps a better understanding of them, and thus enhances the vigilance. Thanks to my parents who possess sufficient health knowledge, I was given HPV-vaccine for prevention of cervical cancer before puberty. However, some other women’s health issues are often overlooked, such as conditions related to fertility and sexual health.

Even if you deliberately manage your diet and exercise properly, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your body is perfectly healthy. Symptoms could be unnoticeable for small health issues such as high cholesterol and high blood pressure, but they may lead to fatal diseases such as heart disease and stroke. If not dealt with in time, these health risks could increase by different factors such as ageing and unhealthy lifestyles. We encourage everyone to learn more about health and wellbeing because it is the only way for us to take early action and prevent the disease before it begins.

Chapter 3.2 - Prevention: How important are body checkups?

Fred: You’re correct! Just like the concept of “prevention is better than cure” that we have been promoting, we hope not to see people only getting checkups when feeling unwell. I guess you have been getting regular health checkups too since you two are health pros?

Jessica: To be frank, I do sense the need for a thorough body checkup, but I often take “being busy” as an excuse. While we all know only gynecological examinations aren’t enough, this phenomenon of taking just certain examinations reflects that we do not have enough understanding of checkups and are making up excuses to avoid them.

There are friends my age facing health problems, and I once blacked out from excessive work pressure. I do get the idea that it could be me next time who gets ill, and looks like I should make an appointment for a comprehensive checkup for peace of mind!

Louisa: I had a similar experience with Jessica. A friend of mine was confirmed with cancer a few years ago, and it was like a wake-up call to me – that I needed to pay attention to my physical health even though I was still relatively young. Since then, I would take health checkups once every one or two years no matter how busy I am. Since I juggle between unstable hours as an actress and long office working hours, I take additional examinations on various body indicators and ultrasound examinations on top of gynecology checks.

Fred: You two have the right concepts. In fact, regular checkups are very important. I hope that after today’s discussion, everyone is reminded to pay more attention to personal health management!

Sadly, according to Bowtie’s informal internal survey, only less than half of our clients are in the habit of having regular medical checkups. While it might not be necessary for everyone to undergo a specialist examination, you can discuss with a family doctor for some fundamental examinations, such as blood pressure and blood lipids checks. Tell your doctor about your lifestyle, physical condition, mental health and exercise routine in the past year, and let the doctor assess whether further specialist examination is needed. In fact, we are also offering similar products, you can learn more about BowKeen if you are interested!

Conclusion: You are not alone on the path of women's health, let us be the engine of your wellbeing!

Bowtie partners with Merck to promote awareness of women's health risks on multiple fronts

Through the sharing of the two modern women, we believe that everyone now has a better understanding of personal self-health management. In many cases,we need more motivation and urgency to prompt ourselves to carry out personal health management. “All roads lead to Rome”, there are countless ways to be healthy. Apart from the above references, you and your friends and your partner could also support and monitor each other and turn them into fuel for achieving a balance in the pursuit of health!

Bowtie, who often stresses the health concept of “prevention is better than cure”, has always strived to contribute to women’s health. In addition to signing a MOU with Merck Pharmaceuticals (Hong Kong) Co., Ltd. (Merck) to strengthen our health support to the ladies, we were also grateful to meet like-minded companions – Women Festival this year.

The Women’s Festival is committed to promoting social innovation and changes, and stepping up to support and respond to various challenges faced by women and other marginalized communities. Bowtie and Merck jointly appeared as sponsors at the Women’s Festival in August and brought a series of activities to the audience. 

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