14 November 2023

HKN 2023: SOHO Organizes a Talk Show on Temulawak Innovation for Health

SOHO Global Health actively participated in the 59th National Health Day (HKN) exhibition, organized by the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Indonesia for three days, from November 9 to November 11, 2023, at the Jakarta Convention Center (JCC) Senayan, Jakarta.

On November 9, 2023, during the HKN 2023 event, SOHO hosted a talk show titled "The Journey of Temulawak (Curcuma xanthorrhiza) to Improve the Nation's Health: From Seed to Patient." Three speakers were featured in the talk show at JCC Senayan: Dr. Ir. Raphael Aswin Susilowidodo, S.T., M.Si, CIP, IPU, Vice President R&D, Regulatory Medical Affairs SOHO Global Health; Dr. (Cand.) dr. Inggrid Tania, M.Si, as the Chairwoman of PDPOTJI (Association of Doctors Developing Traditional Medicines and Indonesian Jamu); and Dr. Fanny Fachrucha, Sp.P(K), a Specialist in Pulmonology.

Dr. Ir. Raphael Aswin Susilowidodo, S.T., M.Si, CIP, IPU, Vice President R&D, Regulatory Medical Affairs SOHO Global Health, mentioned that Indonesia still faces three nutrition-related challenges in the growth and development of children, known as the "triple burden." First is the issue of Malnutrition, with 21.6% of Indonesian children experiencing stunting. Second is the problem of Micronutrient Deficiency, where 95.5% of Indonesian children lack the intake of vitamins and minerals from fruits and vegetables. Third is the issue of Obesity, with 3.5% of Indonesian children being overweight.

Additionally, Indonesian society needs to maintain liver health due to modern lifestyle changes or the consumption of numerous medications in chronic patients, potentially leading to liver diseases in the future. The seriousness of this issue is marked by the increasing prevalence of liver diseases in Indonesia. The primary cause is fatty liver, accounting for up to 40%, followed by hepatitis B and C, contributing 30% and 15%, respectively.

As a pharmaceutical company present in Indonesia for over 70 years, SOHO is committed to developing natural or herbal medicines to improve the quality of life for the community, addressing nutritional issues and maintaining liver health. This commitment involves presenting products with lower side effects and supported by empirical studies.

SOHO also applies the "Seed to Patient" concept for Temulawak, the core ingredient of Curcuma products. "Seed to Patient" is a method where all processes involved in the cultivation and production of herbal medicines are tightly controlled to reduce variability. This concept represents a holistic approach to research focusing on every stage of the product life cycle from upstream to downstream.

On the same occasion, Dr. (Cand.) dr. Inggrid Tania, M.Si, as the Chairwoman of PDPOTJI, shared that Temulawak, based on Indonesia's empirical knowledge passed down through generations, has numerous health benefits. These include improving digestion, boosting the immune system, enhancing appetite, and maintaining liver function.

During the pandemic, many also consume Temulawak as an immunostimulant to boost immunity. Temulawak is included in the Guidelines for the use of herbal and health supplements in facing Covid-19 in Indonesia issued by BPOM RI (Indonesian Food and Drug Administration).
Temulawak has also been proven to increase body weight in children. This is because Temulawak can accelerate stomach emptying, optimize digestive enzyme function, and facilitate the digestion and absorption of fats in the intestines, leading to increased appetite. "By achieving normal weight in children, we can reduce the risk of stunting," she believes.

Meanwhile, Dr. Fanny Fachrucha, Sp.P(K), a Pulmonology Specialist, emphasized that Temulawak or Curcuma can also act as a hepatoprotector in TB (Tuberculosis) patients. According to WHO, 1.5 million people died from TB in 2020, making it the 13th most deadly disease and the second most fatal infectious disease after Covid-19. "Indonesia is currently ranked second in the world for the highest number of TB cases. This disease can be fatal if not promptly treated. Nevertheless, TB is a curable and preventable disease," she stated.

Similar to other TB drugs, TB medications also have side effects, including liver function disorders (Isoniazid, Rifampicin, Pyrazinamide). "And the administration of hepatoprotectors like curcumin contained in Curcuma xanthorrhiza can be considered as complementary therapy for TB patients. The curcumin content in Temulawak has hepatoprotective effects to help improve liver function and prevent further liver damage. Studies on curcuma are also evolving, including combination studies of curcumin and piperine, where the addition of piperine can increase the absorption and bioavailability of curcumin by up to 2,000%, enhancing the efficacy of curcuma as a hepatoprotector," concluded Dr. Fanny.

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