Chinese New Year is this weekend and we’re hoping that everyone’s got their new clothes, done their spring cleaning and are ready to get on with the visiting. Everyone knows the Chinese New Year snacking tends to wreck havoc on any New Year resolutions we might have, so it helps to have a few goals in mind before you chow down on those kueh lapis. Here are a few useful tips to keep in mind.
It’s tradition that Chinese households stock up on lots of goodies for visitors as it symbolises wealth and prosperity…however this also tends to mean lots of snacking for you! Obviously you don’t want to be rude during the festive season, so it’s best to use a bowl and chopsticks instead of a plate with a fork and spoon when eating. This will help with portion control and also allow you more time to eat and digest, so your brain can register that you’re already full.
Communal dining is a big part of the experience of Chinese New Year and no one wants to miss out on the fun of eating steamboat and other delicious dishes with friends and family together. Try to keep track of what you eat so that you don’t overdo it. You can make use of the small bowl/plastic bag/paper box that are often on the table to collect bones, or if there’s skewered food, count the sticks so you know how much you’ve eaten. This might seem like common sense to some of you, but you will be surprised how much food we can consume when there is no effective and accurate way of tracking what we have eaten.
It can be really hard to be good and diet during celebrations like Chinese New Year…after all do you really want to say no to that pineapple tart? But there’s always strength in numbers, and if you can find a friend or relative who is also watching what they eat, then doing it together can be all the more motivating.
This way, when you’re both at gatherings, you can remind each other to limit your tart intake, or that water is better than a sugary drink. Make sure you sit next to each other so you can encourage each other wherever you go!