Tag: healthy lifestyle


  1. Negative calorie food…?

Have you ever heard of “negative-calorie food”? It means the food requires more energy from your body to digest than the calorie the food provides, resulting in weight loss. People like to use celeries or apples as the example.

This is NOT true. (Sad, I know.)

Proteins have the highest thermic effect (20 to 30%), which means it requires more energy to digest protein than the food that has 10%. But there are still plenty of calories left over in your body after you ingest proteins.

The only negative-calorie food would be cold water. Water contains 0 calories, and it requires your body to warm up the cold water when you drink it. However, your body only burns 100 calories if you drink ONE LITRE of cold water. I mean, drinking water is good, but probably not the greatest method to rely on if you want to lose weight.

However, foods that are low in calories may help with weight loss because you can fill with your stomach with fewer calories. Imagine that your stomach needs 1000ml of something to feel full; the calories of 1000ml of pizza are a lot higher than the calories of 1000ml of carrots!

  1. Diet soda help you lose weight…?

I have no clue why some people say this.

Diet soda is made with sweetener instead of sugar, therefore the calories in diet soda are less than the regular ones. For instance, If you normally drink 1 litre of coke a day, and now you decide to change to 1 litre of water, or coke zero, it may help you lose weight, because you cut down the calories you take in; but if you order yourself a large pizza, 2 burgers, 8 chicken wings and a bottle of diet soda, the soda won’t magically make all the calories from those food disappear.

P.S water is the best.

  1. Food that help you lose fat in certain body parts…?

You may find LOTS of posts on the internet that tell you food X helps you lose your belly, or that Y food gives you a thigh gap. The thing is, everyone’s body is different, and your body has no control over where the fat is going to grow or lose. This means, when you gain weight, or when you lose weight, it’s up to your body to decide where it’s going to be.

One thing that may help you to look thinner on a certain body part is exercise. You can do workouts that target a certain body part, when you’re toned up you will look one (or more) size smaller!

  1. Detox diet is the best…?

Or cleanse diet. The diet claims to “detox” your body, get rid of harmful substances, boost your immune system and give your organs a break.

However, there is no scientific evidence that any of these so-called cleanses really benefit a person’s health. Our organs, especially liver and kidneys, together with immune system, can handle detoxification in your body. As long as you don’t drink the excessive amount of alcohol or over-dose on some medications, your body, if healthy, can detox those little toxins on its own. (Let me skip all the physiology of liver.)

Dietitian Katherine  pointed out: “So why do so many people claim to feel better after detoxification? It may be due in part to the fact that a detox diet eliminates highly processed foods that have solid fats and added sugar. Simply avoiding these high-calorie low-nutrition foods for a few days may be part of why people feel better.”

The best detox is an overall healthful eating, which includes plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grain, less processed food and refined sugar, limit intake of alcohol and avoidance of nicotine.

  1. Fresh veggies are better than frozen veggies…?

Ok, I know I have been saying “fresh vegetables” everywhere in my posts, but what about frozen vegetables? I have had people debating with me that frozen vegetables are bad.

Most of the fresh vegetables you get from the markets have to go through a long transportation to get to where they are. Besides, we seldom finish the vegetables we buy within 1 to 2 days, the longer they are exposed to the air after being picked, the more nutrients they lose. By the time you consume them, they may not have the same nutritional value as the frozen vegetables, which the fast freezing process helps to slow down nutrient loss. Of course, if you have a vegetable garden, those vegetables would be the best!

Xoxo Love Tammy

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When I was a dietetics student, working part-time at restaurants, customers liked to ask what I was doing besides waiting tables. When I told them that I was studying to be a dietitian, they would joke:” Ah, that’s why you look so slim.” (And then they would ask me to help them lose weight.)

I normally just laughed… and took their orders.

Many people think we are dietitians therefore we keep our weight healthy, I guess it’s actually the other way round: we have always been health conscious and therefore we became dietitians. Even though actually, after learning more and more about nutrition, I have become less strict about my diet – I don’t exclude anything from my diet, and I don’t judge people for eating what they choose to eat – as long as everything in moderation.

I don’t mean you should eat fast food every day, or stuff your face with pizza, ice cream and chocolates, nor do I mean that you should not eat those foods at all.

Here I’ve listed a few tips for establishing a good relationship with your food.

  1. Quality not quantity



For many decades people believed that “fat is bad” and tried to consume as little fat as possible, but not everyone knows which one is really the bad guy here and which one is the good guy. We need fat in our body for metabolism, to “hold” the vitamin A, D, E and K, to keep ourselves warm, and to use it as an energy source.  Most of the “bad fat” we know are like fat on the meat, deep fried food, baked products etc. but there are many food items have “hidden fat”, such as chicken skin and processed meats (Vienna, polony, sausages and bacon) which are also high in salt and random food preservatives.  The “good fat” would be food items that contain MUFA or PUFA (good fat) such as canola oil, flaxseed oil, salmon fish, pilchards, nuts and seeds, and avocado pears etc.  Choosing the higher quality of fat in your diet will not only decrease the risk of heart disease and obesity but also provide you other benefits like lowering the inflammatory response.


Ah, we all know who the bad guy here is – refined sugar! Refined carbohydrates don’t only mean the table sugar that’s in your tea, coffee, cakes and chocolates, but also white bread, corn flakes and instant oats/porridge. Higher quality carbohydrates would include, but not limited to, whole wheat bread, oats, potatoes (I don’t mean fried chips!), sweet potatoes, carrots and other fruits and vegetables. They are lower in GI, higher in fibre and other vitamins and minerals, which means they will make you feel full for longer, give you a better colon health and make you feel good about yourself.

And no, brown sugar isn’t better than white sugar.

Regarding white rice… I grew up eating white rice most of my life and I don’t think it makes people fat or unhealthy. I mean… you don’t find many fat Asians, but the “refined grain” still makes sense… There are a few posts about it but I think it’s debatable. Article 1, article 2. I’m staying out of this debate.

  1. Eat wholesome food

wholesome food.jpg

Eat a variety of wholesome food.

Wholesome food basically means the food items you can SEE what they are or what they are from. It includes fresh fruits and vegetables, a piece of fresh cut steak or pork, chicken meat, nuts and seeds, beans and lentils, and spices like chilli, herbs, garlic, pepper corn etc.

Wholesome foods are free from food preservatives, chemicals, additional fat, salt or sugar, and are higher in vitamins and minerals in the case of fruits and vegetables.

  1. Everything in moderation

Too much of anything is not good for you, even too much water can be harmful. You might think that dietitians never eat cakes and chocolates, and that we never touch fast food. That’s actually not true, we all have that craving now and then. We do eat those O-So-Bad foods, but it wouldn’t be every day, or every week, maybe once every two months when we feel like it. I wouldn’t tell anyone to NEVER eat a certain food type as long as they don’t over consume it.
It includes portion sizes as well. When you have your dinner, pace yourself (eat slowly), eat until you’re not hungry anymore instead of forcing yourself to finish the whole plate.

I believe that when you master the concept of “everything in moderation”, you’ll learn to enjoy food more without feeling guilty.

The bottom line is, choosing healthy food and cooking healthy meals should be a life style, not to follow a certain diet. When you increase the quality of diet, so does your quality of life and maintaining weight becomes a piece of cake.

Xoxo Love Tammy

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