This Photo shows celery with a tape body measure

By Dr. Willie Ong

How to lose weight, How to live longer, How to stay beautiful? Never-ending questions with no clear answers. Don’t give up easily. Here are 24 practical tips to help you lose a little weight. 

Take cocoa

Cocoa powder is really chocolate with most of the fat removed. Try the unsweetened cocoa powder as a substitute for chocolate.

Don’t eat croissant

A small flaky croissant may have as many as 4 teaspoonfuls of butter. The rolled dough can have up to 9 grams of fat. Take a soft roll (pandesal) or a bagel.

Check the nutritional label

Look at the calorie count per serving and see how large one serving is. To lose weight, an average meal should only be 400 calories or less.

Choose tuna packed in water

Avoid tuna soaked in oil. This will save you 2 grams of fat per tuna sandwich.

Avoid organ meats like sizzling innards (sisig)

These foods are loaded with cholesterol and uric acid. Very unhealthy.

Buy healthy bread

There are healthy breads around like Walter Bread’s Sugar-Free Wheat Bread. It has zero sugar, no cholesterol, and each slice of bread only contains 65 calories.

Increase fiber intake

Vegetables like patola, okra, kangkong and cabbage are high in fiber and good stomach fillers to lessen hunger.

Use light spreads

There are low-fat spreads available like jams and margarine. Make sure to spread it thinly. Every little bit you scrape off and every pat less count in your favor.


Choose low-calorie food items. Some bakeshops offer low-calorie versions of pastries, brownies and cakes. They’re good for diabetics and those overweight.

Look for “Fat-Free” and “Reduced-Fat” products

Fat-free is better. Because the product that contains less than ½ gram of fat per serving is a Fat free. While Reduced fat has 25% less fat than the regular version.

Don’t stock foods at home

Your home is your last line of defense. If it’s not within your reach, then you can’t eat it. Don’t hoard food items, especially junk foods. Can you guess who will end up eating them all?

No to buffets

This all-you-can-eat strategy is simply against common diet sense. Add to your dilemma the “no leftovers policy or you pay double.” Just order a la carte and look the other way.

Split your meals

Most restaurants offer servings fit for two persons. Don’t be ashamed to split your meals. Share your food and instantly cut your calorie intake in half.

Less pizza toppings

I am surprised at how much fat they can add to a flat pizza. It’s supremely unbelievable to put cheesy-cheese and hidden hotdogs inside the pizza’s crust. Talk about feeding the unsuspecting buyer. For your sake, just order Hawaiian pizza or just plain cheese.

Go vegetarian

One of our favorite food chains is Bodhi which offers vegetarian and tasty recipes. But just don’t eat vege-meat everyday as they’re high in uric acid and can make you develop kidney stones.

Go easy on the gravy

I’ve seen people make their fried chicken disappear in a pool of gravy sauce. That’s real fatty, my friend.

Minimize mayonnaise dressings

They call it Thousand Island Dressing for a reason. It’ll cost you a thousand calories. Caesar’s dressing is undesirable too especially with the fried bacon bits. Try vinaigrette or vinegar-based dressings, although it takes a while to get used to the taste.

Order plain rice

As your filler food, a big temptation is to go for the garlic rice or the Fookien fried rice. Order plain rice and save 30% of the calories with the same filler effect.

Eat bread substitute for rice

Low-fat sandwiches, like Subway, are good diet options. They’re packed with vegetables and healthier meat like turkey or tuna. Just skip the mayonnaise or spread just a little for taste. My wife Liza even avoids the cheese.

Avoid loaded and killer drinks

These are no-no’s please. Avoid them like the plague. No whip cream floating on your coffee drink. No vanilla ice cream sinking in your Coke float. Less syrup for the fruit shake. No to go-large drinks in fast-foods. No to bottomless iced tea.

H20 has 0 calories. Zip calories too for Chinese tea. If you can’t help it, diet soft drinks are allowed in moderation.

Give your calories away

Be nice to your friends (or enemies). Give your chocolates, cakes and sweets to them.

Walk after eating

Once you’ve eaten take a short walk to burn a few calories. It will help in the digestion.

Avoid temptation. Far from sight, far from mind. Avoid people that make you hungry. Avoid gatherings that tempt you to eat. Remember, we eat to live and not live to eat.

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