With meals out, celebrations and temptations of social events, being restrictive with your diet can often seem too difficult. The regular consumption of high–sugar, caffeinated or alcoholic drinks has repeatedly shown to be a roadblock in the journey to a healthy lifestyle.
In light of the Chinese New Year, finding balance in your diet during times of celebration can prove to be a challenging feat. Recent studies have shown that 24% of the average person’s daily calorie intake is taken through a straw, with 10% of that from carbonated, high-sugar content drinks. You don’t have to avoid drinks out with friends or limit yourself to ONLY water throughout the day in order to see an improvement in your health and waistline. Making a few simple swaps can not only aid in overall weight loss and maintenance, but it can see improvements in your skin, mood and energy levels.
Swap: 100Plus for fresh coconut water
- Less calories
- Absorbed faster
- Natural alternative
Looking to replace electrolytes? Need to curb that dull headache? Besides being a completely natural and usually less expensive option, Coconut water contains electrolytes that are more compatible with the body’s plasma than 100Plus. This means that your body can rehydrate faster and more efficiently, not to mention 100% naturally. Coconut water also contains 19 calories per 100ml compared to 27 calories in 100Plus.
Tweak: Your Bubble Tea order
- Choose non-dairy milk
- Choose fresh fruit to sweeten
- Reduce serving by up to 150 calories
Bubble Tea is one of the most popular drinks in Asia, but unknowingly delivers around 350 calories per serving! That’s a normal meal for most people. There are a few tweaks you can make to your Bubble Tea order to reduce the level of sugar and artificial flavours, turning it into a low-calorie option to sip on.
Firstly, adding milk products to your order increases its calories by around 120 per serve.
Forego condensed milk and ask for soy or almond milk
Secondly, most stores add syrup instead of fresh fruit, drastically bringing up the calories per serve.
Request for a natural sweetener (fruit juice/puree) and pass on the sweet taste if it isn’t an option.
Swap: Bintang for Singha light beer
- Around a 100 calorie reduction per drink
- Found in most bars
For men and women who enjoy a beer with dinner or while out with friends, you don’t have to completely cut it out of your diet – just swap it. With Asia recently taking over America and Europe as the biggest beer drinking continent, it’s worth choosing one that won’t ruin all your healthy habits.
Most beers sit between 125 and 185 calories per serving (Bintang, San Miguel, Singha Beer, Tiger Beer etc), so swap them out for an ice-cold, 97 calories per serve, Singha Light Beer. Limiting yourself to 1-2 a week will make sure you see the results of your healthy habits.
Tweak: Your vodka order
One of the easiest ways to lose weight or stay in shape is to remove alcohol from your diet. When there comes a time where you want to celebrate or join friends and family for a drink, there are a few tweaks you can make to not majorly set yourself back in your fitness journey.
Your drink doesn’t have to permanently change to a vodka-lime-soda just because it sounds like the healthiest option. Instead, here are a few tweaks to your order that is low in calories and high in flavour:
- Mojito (without the sugar) – 100 calories
- Gin and Tonic – 110 calories
- Vodka martini – 127 calories
- Old fashioned – 140 calories
The key to any long term fitness goal is moderation; this goes for diet, exercise and treats in your life. Enjoying celebrations or holidays with your friends and family whilst staying in shape is simple as long as you make smart decisions about what you eat and drink.