May 2014: Eat better and healtier: The Filipino Style



We all agree that Filipinos love eating!

We have our complete meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner and snacks in between, plus a snack at midnight.

But it is still important for us to watch what we eat.

Here are some tips on our everyday foods that we should keep in mind for us to stay healthy.

Lessen your White Rice

For Filipinos, what’s a meal without white rice, right? 

But studies have evolved about white rice causing weight gain. The starch in the rice turns to sugar which induces appetite.

Always remember that a fistful of white rice is the proportion that you should be eating in a meal. 

As much as possible, stay away from Fried Foods

Ask any Pinoy kid as to what his favorite dish is — most will say “Fried Chicken”.

It’s hard to turn away from a culture where TV commercials feature fried chicken as the ultimate treat, and Lechon feast signifying a celebration’s grand standing.

But if you want to reclaim your health and jump-start your diet Filipino food plan, you need to stay away from food that are pampabata or food that makes you stay young (because you will die young if you keep on a fried food diet).

Try roasting, baking or grilling instead of frying. And take off the skin!

No to Salty or Sweet Meat Dishes, with a side dip of Patis (Fish Sauce) or Toyo (Soy Sauce) 

Let’s face it, we love our rich, creamy sauces, or savory, fat-infused meat dishes to go on top of our white rice.

And then serve that with a salty dripping sauce? 

Remember, the meat sauce in itself is laden with fat and calories (that’s why it’s so flavorful), then add to that the meat portion…that could be in itself your half-a-day calorie allowance.


Vegetable Dish to go with a meal? A diet Filipino food must!

The food pyramid suggests a serving of vegetable in every meal for optimum health.
I don’t think Fried eggplants or mushy Pinakbet fall on this category.

Try sauteing your favorite vegetable in little oil, and leave it a little on the crunchy side.

Overcooked vegetables are not only unappetizing, the fiber nutrient is gone and all the flavor is drained out to the sauce.

Sauteing with a tub of oil

Well, not really a tub, but you get the picture, right?

Whatever oil you put into your saute goes into your dish. We use oil to bring out the flavor of garlic and onions. Using more of it doesn’t add anything to the taste.

Even using the healthy oil alternatives such as Olive Oil or Canola will not help the waistline if you are using too much.

A tablespoon of oil is just enough to start your saute dish.

Enough of too much Sweet Desserts

Who doesn’t love Fruit Salad or Leche Flan after a hearty meal?

But sugar is sugar! Anything processed or not in its natural form is not good for you.

Try to fill up on fruits so you won’t have room for the sweet desserts.

No to Softdrinks (soda)

Softdrinks (Zero or not) is  not a healthy alternative to water or tea — and you wonder why you don’t lose the bulging lower abdomen (puson)?

Cut your soda consumption to, say, three times a week for the next 3 months, then down to twice or once every couple months… up until you just have it when you’re dining out.

Everyone has to start somewhere, right?

Study shows it takes 21 days to break a bad habit — likewise, it takes 21 days to create a good habit! There’s always a choice.


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