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The Chanwuyi Lifestyle Medicine Program

I have interest in Chinese medical concepts and the health maintaining method for a long time; and understand that the Chinese view of health is quite different from western medicine.  I have developed a thought to try applying the Chinese medical concept as a neuropsychological intervention.  This interest was developed in the 1990s when I was a student at the University of California in San Diego. I have seen various types of brain disorders such as stroke, dementia, and traumatic brain injury during my clinical training. However, some medication may reduce the physical and psychiatric symptoms of the patients, no effective cure for memory and cognitive disorder.   


Twenty-some years later, I developed a lifestyle medicine program to improve the cognitive function and psychological wellbeing based upon the traditional Chinese Chan medical concepts. Empirical studies for over ten years have shown that older adults using the Chanwuyi Lifestyle Medicine Program have demonstrated improved memory, mood, and sleep quality after receiving the intervention. Patients with depression have shown improvement in their psychological problems. Children with autism, after receiving the intervention, have shown improvement in their ability to achieve self-control and have had fewer behavioral problems.  In sum, different cohorts showed various levels of improvement in cognitive function, emotional status, and physical health. The results are very encouraging. 


The Chanwuyi Lifestyle Medicine Program has earned the Certified Lifestyle Medicine Program designation from the American College of Lifestyle Medicine.  It has been used in some hospitals and schools in Hong Kong.  More and more people are learning this method online and reporting encouraging results.


長期以來,我對中醫的概念和養生方法很感興趣 ,也明白中國人的健康觀與西醫大不相同。 我產生了一個念頭,嘗試將中醫概念作為神經心理干預。 這種想法是在二十世紀九十年代,我在加州大學聖地牙哥分校讀書時發展起來的。在臨床訓練中,我見過各種類型的腦部疾病,如中風、癡呆症和創傷性腦損傷。一些藥物可以減少病人的身體和精神癥狀,然而,沒有有效治療記憶和認知障礙的方法。  


二十年後 ,基於中國傳統禪醫學理念和臨床心理學干預方法,我開發了東西方綜合生活方式醫學項目,主指是提高認知功能和心理健康。十多年的實證研究表明,使用禪武醫生活方式醫學計劃的老年人在接受干預后,記憶力、情緒和睡眠品質都得到了改善。抑鬱症患者的心理問題也有所改善。自閉症兒童在接受干預后,自我控制能力有所提高,行為問題也有所減少。 總之,不同的群體在認知功能、情緒狀態和身體健康方面表現出不同程度的改善。結果非常令人鼓舞。"其目的是説明患者培養一種能夠對大腦以及身心健康產生積極影響的生活方式。


禪醫學生活方式醫學計劃已獲得美國生活方式醫學學院的認證,並已在香港的一些醫院和學校使用。 越來越多的人在網上學習了這種方法,並報告了令人鼓舞的結果。 

The Hong Kong List Learning Test


When I return to Hong Kong in 1997, there was lack of Chinese verbal memory test, making it difficult to assess the memory disorders of patients with brain disorder.  In order to improve the quality of clinical service in Hong Kong, I have developed The Hong Kong List Learning Test (HKLLT) in 1997.  This ecological validated verbal memory test in Hong Kong has a significant impact on both research and clinical application. 


The development of HKLLT provided a validated tool for assessing the memory problems of the Chinese population in Hong Kong.  The normative data of HKLLT cover a wide age range ( 6 to 98 years old); thus, the application of this assessment can be across the lifespan.  The development of HKLLT has facilitated the research development in Hong Kong; papers that utilized HKLLT to measure memory function have been published in top-ranking journals, including Nature, Neuroplogy, Archives of Neurology, Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.  The clinical population studied using HKLLT includes patients with dementia, temporal lobe lesions, schizophrenia, depression, children with autism, and attention deficit hyperactive. 


The Hong Kong List Learning Test is one of the most widely used clinical tools for assessing memory function in Chinese population.  The utilization of the test can be evidenced by order of the test from the department of psychology in the Chinese University of Hong Kong.  Among the seven clusters of public hospitals, all of them ordered HKLLT. Thus, most of the public hospitals in Hong Kong utilize HKLLT.   In addition, many government units, including the department of health, Education Bureau, Social welfare Department, Correctional Services Department, and Hong Kong Housing Society, also ordered the test.  Six universities in Hong Kong, two universities in Taiwan, one in Singapore have also applied to the HKLLT.  Besides, thirty NGOs in Hong Kong also have utilized the HKLLT. 

The HKLLT has been made available to the clinical profession since 2006, and the recent order is in 2019 from the HK Kowloon Central Cluster.  The is a piece of evidence that the HKLLT has been widely used in various clinical settings for 14 years.   Professions utilized the HKLLT, including clinical psychologists, occupational therapists, speech therapists, educational psychologists, and Nurses. 

In sum, the HKLLT is an ecological validated clinical assessment for memory in Hong Kong and other Chinese populations that have been widely applied and well received.  The Hong Kong List Learning Test is making memory assessment of the Chinese population possible!



我一九九七年我回港時,香港缺乏中文記憶測試,難以評估腦部疾病患者的記憶障礙。 為了提高香港的臨床服務質素,我於一九九七年發展了《香港文字記憶測試》。 這項在香港進行生態驗證的文字記憶測試,對研究和臨床應用都有著重大影響。

香港文字記憶測試為評估香港華人的記憶問題提供了一個有科研驗證的工具。 香港文字記憶測試 的規範數據涵蓋廣泛的年齡範圍(6 至 98 歲),因此,此評估的應用可以跨越整少中老年齡。 香港文字記憶測試的發展捉進了香港腦神經科學的研究:利用 香港文字記憶測試 測量記憶功能的論文已發表在頂級期刊上,包括《自然》、《神經病學》、《神經學檔案》、《美國老年醫學會雜誌》。 使用 香港文字記憶測試 研究的臨床人群包括癡呆症、側葉受損、精神分裂症、抑鬱症、自閉症兒童和注意力缺陷過度活躍的患者。 


香港文字記憶測試是評估華語記憶功能最廣泛使用的臨床工具之一。專業人士可於香港中文大學心理學系購買香港文字記憶測試, 從登記使用者清單中瞭解香港文字記憶測試廣泛應用的程度。 在香港七羣組公立醫院中,所有羣組醫院均訂購了。因此,香港大部分公立醫院都採用香港文字記憶測試。  此外,很多政府單位,包括衛生署、教育局、社會福利署、懲教署及香港房屋協會,亦是登記使用者。 香港有六所大學,臺灣有兩所大學,新加坡有一所大學也購買及迄登記使用者。 此外,香港亦有三十個非政府組織使用香港文字記憶測試。

香港文字記憶測試自2006年起向臨床界提供一直,直到現在 訂單尚未停止,最近的訂單是在 2019 年 ,這說明了香港文字記憶測試在各種機構中廣己泛使用14年。  專業人應用香港文字記憶測試士包括臨床心理學家、職業治療師、言語治療師、教育心理學家和護士。 總之,香港文字記憶測試是科研發展的臨床評估,用於香港和其他中國人口的記憶,已得到廣泛應用和好評。



Selective Publications on the HKLLT


Chan, A.S., Ho, Y.C., Cheung, M.C. (1998). Music training improves verbal memory. Nature, 396, 128.

Chan, A., Kwok, I., Chui, H., Lam, L., Pang, A., & Chow, L. Y. (2000). Memory and organizational strategies in chronic and acute schizophrenic patients.  Schizophrenia Research, 41, 431-445.

Cheung, M. C., Chan, A., Law, S., Chan, J., & Tse, V. (2000). Cognitive function of patients with nasopharyngeal carcinoma with and without temporal lobe radionecrosis. Archives of Neurology, 57, 1347-1352.

Chan, A., Cheung M.C., Ho, Y.C., He, W.J. (2000). Localized brain activation by selective tasks improves specific cognitive functions in human. Neuroscience Letters, 283, 162-164.

Chan, A., Ho, S., & Poon, W. S. (2002) Neuropsychological sequelae of patients treated with microsurgical clipping or endovascular embolization for anterior communicating artery aneurysm. European Neurology, 47, 37-44.

Chan, A. S., Shum, D., & Cheung, R. W. Y. (2003). Recent development of cognitive and neuropsychological assessment in Asian countries. Psychological Assessment, 15(3), 257-267.

Cheung, M. C., & Chan, A. (2003). A. Memory impairment in humans after bilateral damage to lateral temporal neocortex. Neuroreport, 14, 371-374.

Au, A., Chan, A., & Chui, H. (2003). Verbal learning in Alzheimer’s dementia. Journal of International Neuropsychological Society, 9, 363-375.

Cheung, M.C., Chan, A.S., Law, S.C., Chan, J.H., Tse, V.K. (2003). Impact of radionecrosis on cognitive dysfunctionin patients following radiotherapy for nasopharyngeal carcinoma. Cancer, 97, 2019-2026.

Ho, Y. C., Cheung, M. C., & Chan, A. (2003). Music training improves verbal but not visual memory: cross-sectional and longitudinal explorations in children. Neuropsychology, 12, 439-450.

Woo, J., Lau, E., Ho, S.C., Cheng, F., Chan, C., Chan A. S., Haines, C. J., Chan, T. Y. K., Li, M., & Sham, A. (2003) Comparison of pueraria lobata with hormone replacement therapy in treating the adverse health consequences of the menopause. Menopause, 10, 352-361.

Chan, A., Cheung, M. C., Law, S. C., & Chan, J. H. (2004) Phase II study of Alpha-Tocopherol in improving the cognitive function of patients with temporal lobe radionecrosis. Cancer, 100, 398-404.

Chan, A., Ho, Y.C. Cheung, M.C., Albert, M.S., Chiu, H.F.K., & Lam, L. C.W. (2005). Association between mind-body and cardiovascular exercises and memory in older adults. Journal of American Geriatrics Society, 53, 1754-1760.

Cheung, M.C., Chan, A.S., Chan, Y.L., Lam, J.M.K., & Lam, W. (2006). Effects of illness duration on memory processing of patients with temporal lobe epilepsy. Epilepsia, 47, 1320-1328.

Lam, L.C.W., Tang, N.L.S., Ma, S., Lui, V.W.C., Chan, A.S.Y., Leung, P.Y., Chiu H.F.K. (2006). Apolipoprotein epsilon-4 allele and the two-year progression of cognitive function in Chinese subjects with late-onset Alzheimer's disease. American Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease and Other Dementias, 21, 92-99.

Ho, S.C., Chan, A.S.Y., Ho, Y.P., So, E.K.F., Sham, A., Zee, B., & Woo, J.L.F. (2007). Effects of soy isoflavone supplementation on cognitive function in Chinese postmenopausal women: a double-blind, randomized, controlled trial. Menopause: The Journal of the North American Menopause Society, 14, 489-499.

Chan, A.S., & Cheung, M.C. (2007). Pre-activating the mesial temporal lobe facilitates learning. Neuroscience Letters, 411, 194-199.

Chan, A.S., Cheung, M.C., Sze, L.S. (2008). Effect of mind/body training on children with behavioral and learning problems: a randomized controlled study. In N.B. Deluca (Ed.), Mind-Body and Relaxation Research Focus (Ch.8, pp. 165-193). Nova Science Publisher, Inc.

Cheung, M.C., Chan, A.S., Lam, J.M.K., & Chan, Y.L. (2009). Pre- and post-operative fMRI and clinical memory performance in temporal lobe epilepsy. Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry, 80, 1099-1106.

Chan, A.S., Cheung, M.C., Han, Y.M., Sze, S.L., Leung, W.W., Man, H.S., & To, C.Y. (2009). Executive function deficits and neural discordance in children with autism spectrum disorders. Clinical Neurophysiology, 120, 1107-1115.

Cheung, M.C., Chan, A.S., Sze, S.L., Leung, W.W., & To, C.Y. (2010). Verbal memory deficits in relation to organization strategy in high- and low-functioning autistic children. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 4, 764-771.

Chan, A.S., Han, Y.M.Y., Leung, Sze, S.L., Cheung, M.C., W.W., Leung, C., Chan, R.C.K., & To, C.Y. (2011). Disordered connectivity associated with memory deficits in children with autism spectrum disorders. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 5, 237-245.

Han, Y.M.Y., Leung, W.W., Wong, C.K., Lam, J.M.K., Cheung, M.C. & Chan, A.S. (2011). Lymphocyte subset alterations related to executive function deficits and repetitive stereotyped behavior in autism. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 5, 486-494.

Chan, A.S., Sze, S.L., Cheung, M.C., Han, Y.M.Y., Leung, W.W.M. & Shi, D. (2011). Dejian mind-body intervention improves the cognitive functions of a child with autism. Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, DOI:10.1155/2011/549154.

Chan, A. S., Cheung, W. K., Yeung, M. K., Woo, J., Kwok, T., Shum, D. H., Yu, R., & Cheung, M. C. (2017). A Chinese Chan-based mind-body intervention improves memory of older adults. 190.


Chan, A. S., Cheung, W. K., Yeung, M. K., & Lee, T. L. (2018). Sustained effects of memory and lifestyle interventions on memory functioning of older adults: An 18-month follow-up study.Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, 10, 240.


Chan, A. S., Lee, T. L., Hamblin, M. R., & Cheung, M. C. (2021) Photoneuromodulation makes a difficult cognitive task less arduous. (1), 13688.


Chan, A. S., Lee, T. L., Hamblin, M. R., & Cheung, M. C. (In Press). Photobiomodulation enhances memory processing in older adults with mild cognitive impairment: A functional near-infrared spectroscopy study.


The Pro-Talent Association Ltd.

I had conducted research and provided clinical services for older adults with cognitive disorders when I was in the United States and never thought that I would provide clinical services to children.    It began when some friends had children with special education needs and asked me for help when I first returned to Hong Kong in 1997.  They were desperate to find ways to train their children and were not satisfied with the current behavioral training methods.   I think the brain science models could facilitate their learning and development, but this type of training was unavailable at that time.  Therefore, I established some experimental methods to train the children, and the results were very encouraging.  Most of the children who received the training in the early stage are now attending normal primary and high schools.  


As the demand for this experimental training has been increasing, I have decided to make the service available to the public and thus set up the Pro-Talent that is a social enterprise.  With the support from the Chinese University of Hong Kong under the Sustainable Knowledge Transfer Fund, the Pro-Talent Association Ltd. was established in 2016.  For the past few years, some of the children trained at our association have demonstrated significant improvement in attention, memory, language, executive functions, and psychological wellness. We are pleased to see some children can handle the academic requirement in mainstream school, and some of them can even achieve excellent academic performance in mainstream school.



我在美國時是為有認知障礙的老年人進行過研究和提供臨床服務,從沒想過我會為兒童提供臨床服務。   在一九九七年我回到香港時, 一些朋友有特殊教育需要的孩子向我求助。 他們急切地想方設法訓練他們的孩子,對目前的行為訓練方法不滿意。  我認為大腦科學模型可以促進他們的學習和發育,但這種類型的訓練在當時是沒有的。 因此,我建立了一些實驗方法來訓練孩子,結果非常令人鼓舞。 大部份在早期接受培訓的兒童現在都在正常的小學和高中上學。 


隨著對這種大腦科學模型培訓的需求不斷增加,我決定向公眾提供這項服務,因此成立慧能培訓協會 ,一個社會企業。 在香港中文大學可持續知識轉移基金的支援下,慧能培訓協會有限公司於二零壹六年成立。  在過去的幾年裡,我們協會培訓的一些孩子在注意力、記憶力、語言、執行功能和心理健康方面都得到了顯著改善。我們高興地看到,有些孩子能夠適應主流學校的學業要求,有的甚至能在主流學校取得優異的學習成績。

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