Can’t resist squeezing in a post before being dragged for visiting… Happy Chinese New Year & Happy Holidays 🙂
For Chinese celebrants, Chinese New Year (CNY) is here. In Malaysia, we seemed to be lucky because we celebrate various festivals, Chinese New Year, Deepavali, Raya, Christmas together. We visit each other’s homes and taste various goodies that our friends and relatives got to offer.
Normally during CNY, when you go visiting, you can expect the following type of food:
–various types of cookies and cakes
–fried stuff- prawn or fish crackers
–a rich assortments of sweets and candies
–nien gao (basket cake- my mom makes them)
–barbequed meat (taste sweet)
–sweetened packet/can drinks
–mandarin oranges (just found out that one mandarin orange have the same calories of a piece of bread-that case, you might as well eat bread because mandarin oranges can irritate your throat)
–for dinners, it will be chicken, fish or meat, cooked in various styles.
So in short, all the type of food offered are either high in fat or sugar (except for the steamed fish or chicken). You will notice mostly are a bit high in the Glycemic Index, ie they tend to raise your blood sugar quickly, elevating sugar cravings and higher intake of food.
That was my diet for these few days (breakfast and tea time) a few days leading to CNY. Due to time constraints in view of CNY preparations- my family and I no longer have time to prepare more healthy breakfast- instead, we just eat whatever we can find around the house. Also, during work, instead of choosing to eat at a healthy vegetarian place near our office, my colleagues and I went to restaurant that served more highly flavoured food (with loads of MSG and sugar). This is our little celebration in anticipation of the coming CNY. My favourite is fried marmite chicken (which they served with white rice). Still, I am able to practice adequete portion control, which I attribute to more regular hormones due to exercising.
The eve of CNY is one of the busiest days of the year for me, with cleaning lasting from morning to midnight. And I woke up that morning feeling quite tired and can’t seemed to work (haha, maybe because I also subconsciously dread housework). So I had no choice but to resort to the additional artificial boost when the condition don’t seems to improve by afternoon- from my best friend, aka caffiene. Walked all the way to Starbucks under the hot sun just to discover that they have relocated. So I had to go much further to Coffee Bean and bought myself a large Latte. The brisk walking helped a little to make me feel better, even thought it was under the hot unrelenting sun. Back at home, alternating between the latte and doses of cold water did the trick- and I regained my energy levels back. Did whatever tidying up and cleaning, vacumed and mopped the entire house and scubbed the bathroom- by the time I finished, it was almost 10.30pm.
Still, my best advice is that if you have important events coming up where you cannot afford to have low energy levels, eat food that is low or moderate in G.I. Basically, stay away from food high in processed sugar, white starch or fat- and you’ll be ok.
Also, it is also a challenging time for fitness conscious people- as weight gain is bound to occur. A trainer I know actually plan to do lots of jogging in her hometown (that have no gym facilities) during CNY- she has a sweet tooth and do not plan to abstain from sweets. But she plans to exercise all those calories away.
Geez, time to fulfill my social and family obligations….
HAPPY CHINESE NEW YEAR!