So, I apparently brought myself down to a healthy weight, and it was not easy (but very, very simple). As such, I would like to share with you some little tips today of how I eat to maintain my weight.
Okay, so I went to a place called Absolut Thai at Century Square shopping mall for lunch yesterday, and I order a Thai Iced Tea, and a Glass Noodle salad with seafood.
Thai Iced Tea, not stirred.
At the point that I was seriously bringing down my weight, the Thai Iced Tea is a big no-no, as it probably contains more than 300 kcal with zero nutrients. But now, I am really just maintaining, and I balance out what I eat/drink throughout the day, so it's really once in a while that I indulge in sweet drinks.
Thai Iced Tea stirred.
For the sake of those who are also foodies, Thai Iced Tea is very special and a MUST-order when you first go to any Thai restaurant. IF the Thai Iced Tea is not nice, there is 80% chance that the entire restaurant is not nice, from food to service, etc.
The other two must-orders from Thai eateries are Green Curry and Stuffed Chicken Wings. If you have more space in the stomach, go for Pineapple Rice and Thai Fish Cake. Then try the dessert, like Mango Rice or Red Ruby.
IF any of these happen to be not satisfying, there is a good 95% chance that the restaurant simply cannot make it.
The next one is an uncommon tip, and that is, use a FORK to eat, especially if you're eating noodles like Laksa, green curry, wanton mee, spaghetti, macaroni, etc, etc.
I have the bad habit of using fork to eat since young because I am lazy, and I only use one hand. So the fork is able to scoop rice, noodles, poke the meat, and even get me a bit of soup! In other words, I can eat anything, including chicken wings with bone, with just one fork in just one hand. Lazy to the max, I know.
Okay, I shall get to the point. The point is, noodles tend to have soup or sauces, and the soup is full of oil and salt. Either that, or the sauce is full of FLOUR and SUGAR. When you use a fork, you pick up MINIMAL extra flour and sugar and salt. So you basically get the taste, but lose the extra nutrient-less but weight-adding stuff.
This is especially true if you are eating chicken curry and Laksa. Singaporeans have the habit of drinking the soup dry no matter how spicy and oily and coconut milk-filled it is. Singaporeans slurp up the soup in Japanese Ramen!!! The Japanese don't.
You see, it's not just the extra flour and sugar in sauces that should be avoided. The oily soup should also be avoided especially if it was used to cook meats. That is because meats have fats and stuff known as glycerides, and there are studies showing that the boiling breaks down these stuff, to become "poison".
When I say "poison", I mean things like trans fat. I think most beauty readers would have heard of trans fat, and know that it is banned. HOWEVER, trans fat is present in any deep fried food. YES, restaurants don't ADD it like they used to, so they don't violate the law. But trans fat FORMS when you heat meat at high temperatures, and nobody is doing anything to stop Chemistry. AND trans fat is concealed in food labels under names like hydrolyzed, etc. Just be careful of deep fried food and any form of packed food including breakfast cereals and canned food.
Okay, I've sidetracked too much. What I mean is, don't drink that soup from the steamboat, and fish ball noodles, and Bak Kut Teh, etc.
Use the fork, poke only what you want to eat, filter out the rest.
Disclaimer: I wrote the above using knowledge from my memory, simply because I have read too many books, magazines, and news reports on food and nutrition in the past 6 years, during my journey to eat and exercise better. I do not archive 95% of what I have read, so I have no reference to make. Please do not quote me since there has been research that proves memory fails and can be manipulated. (The research involved giving witnesses video clips of crime, the witnesses pointed out wrongly that the accused is guilty and really the accused is innocent. Memory fails even when it comes to a life and death court trial. This is because majority of human memory is fragile and volatile, and it explains why there are XYZ advertisements along the expressways, because once you see the ad, the next time you're thirsty, you're 80% likely to buy an XYZ.)
Okay, commercial break, look at the beautiful Absolut Thai restaurant. I love this place because it has a cafe concept that allows you to feel comfortable just ordering a drink and read your book.
By the way, I'm not saying Absolut Thai is unhealthy. In fact I think the glass noodle and steamed fish, and steam mushrooms with asparagus, etc are solidly good for health. And I am not saying don't eat green curry, because that's my greatest favorite for Thai food. I eat almost everything and I eat a lot, but I lose the extra stuff by using a fork.
Pretty, pretty. I LOVE chandeliers.
Now for the third tip, eat the ice when you find the food too spicy.
Drinking cold/ice water is no use if you want to remove the spicy feeling on your tongue. NO USE. Yes, it feels good to have icy water pass by your tongue. Yes, water has a high heat capacity, meaning it can absorb a lot of heat (before boiling). But no, no, no, it will not cool you down, because it passes through too quickly.
So if you have the habit of keep ordering sugar water, like another can of Coke, or another can of Kickapoo or another glass of Ice Lemon Tea, stop that. You're just ordering another big cup of nutrition-less sugar that will make you more addicted to sugar and grow fat faster.
What you can do, if you've ordered just one glass of sugared water like me, eat the ice. The glass noodle salad was so spicy, and I finished my Thai Iced Tea. Yes, Absolut Thai serves ice water for no extra charge, but I didn't want to feel extra bloated, as belatedness is not healthy as well, since it is additional strain on my body. So I ate the ice.
The reason being, ice melts into water when it absorbs heat (duh), and this heat has a specific name called Latent Heat of Fusion. That means, the ice must absorb this value of heat to melt. And while ice is in the tea, it would absorb the heat from the tea, thus making the tea cold, but if you hold the ice in your mouth, it will absorb heat that comes from the spicy food to melt, thereby removing the hotness on your tongue. Besides, ice will also numb your nerves, so you feel less hot.
That said, water also has something called Specific Heat Capacity, and you can hold chilled water in your mouth and wait for the water to warm up. But it is way too hard to hold water inside your mouth for 10 minutes or more (which is how long I took to cool my tongue from the spicy glass noodle salad). Also, you would look silly holding water in your mouth. You really don't want to accidentally spit the water on your partner halfway as well. And these are the reasons that make eating ice a much more sensible thing to do. Ice is simply easier to hold and keep inside your mouth.
And this time round, I can assure you that your tongue will cool when you've held enough ice in your mouth.
IF you're hygiene conscious (like my mum), you may not want to eat ice since you do not know what water they use to make ice. In Singapore, it's most likely tap water, and I am fine by it since I fully trust Singapore's tap water to be drinkable. At home, I always make ice with boiled water though, as it's a habit I picked up from my mum. Just don't do this if you know the tap water in your country is not something you want to drink unboiled.
Now, I've typed too much. I tend to rattle when talking about Science because it is my area of study.
In summary, use a fork to eat so you filter out oily soup and excess carb-loaded sauces, and also eat the ice to cool down instead of ordering second and third cups of sugared water.
Try these tips next time and let me know what you think!