The Chemistry Set

When I was young, my dad bought a chemistry set that featured hundreds of experiments. He told me if I studied hard, he would reward me with that kit. Even though I never did receive that kit, I studied because I love to, investigating and researching into topics and subjects beyond the educational curriculum.

Einstein, Soap, and Glass

I got myself appointed as a librarian, and managed to devour many books that collected dust in the library, including Albert Einstein’s theories on relativity. I also became the only “member” of the high school chemistry club, where the teacher trusted me enough to look after the chemistry lab. I researched the chemistry of perfumes, soap, glass making, and many more. It sparked my interest in chemistry and biochemistry.

This Body This Life book on health, fitness and nutrition, by brothers Seamus Phan and CJ PhanBiochemist

Eventually, in junior college, I started a science project that became a “runaway” project for life. I started to study the autoxidation of lipids (oils and fats), such as palm oil, palm kernel oil, butter, milk, etc. I researched the various natural and commercial antioxidants used in foods as additives to retard autoxidation, as well as proposed antioxidants that may have eventual use in foods or cosmetics. That research took a “deep freeze” and got rekindled during the recent global crisis, where time was freed up to continue more research in this area, especially related to toxicity, ongoing and emerging developments in relation to internal oxidative processes in the human body and antiaging as well. Why did I rekindle this research? It has something to do with the book I co-authored with my younger brother on health and fitness, This Body This Life.

In the endemic years, I managed to have more time to rekindle the oxidation research, which eventually culminated in a series of edits, tweaks, updated content, rewrites, and eventually found a home in an academic journal related to healthcare and health (10.9734/ajmah/2022/v20i430457). Visit my ResearchGate page too.

What develops next is still a BIG unknown. But this could be a new phase going forward! Stay tuned to what I intend to do with my research in a consumer-facing idea.