Health Blog

Are you having too much protein?

Lately, diets with high protein have been a hit, no matter the protein intake comes from a big portion of diet or supplement such as protein shakes. Maybe you are already trying some of the high protein diets but have this ever come into your mind – are you having too much protein and how does that affect your body?

Does too much protein harm your body?

It will be a yes for this question as any imbalanced diet will bring negative effects to your body. High protein diets are possibly related to conditions such as:

  • Increase body weight
  • High cholesterol level and increased risk of cardiovascular disease
  • Higher risk of cancer
  • Kidney related disease
  • Diarrhoea or constipation

How much protein is excessive?

According to recommended dietary allowance (RDA), daily protein intake for healthy women & men aged 18 and above is 58g and 68g respectively. Even so, more than 2grams/kg of protein intake per day should be avoided for excessive intake. (E.g. 92grams/day for a 50kg person.)

What to look out if you want to have a high protein diet?

  • Doctor advisor for any special health problem that may not suitable for such diet
  • Spread protein intake evenly throughout all meals during the day
  • Gain protein from turkey, chicken breast, beans, fish and nuts instead of red meats and processed carbohydrates
  • Pick a balanced diet that consists high amount of fiber, fruits, and vegetables (E.g. Mediterranean diet)

Reference: Publishing, H. (2020). When it comes to protein, how much is too much? – Harvard Health. [online] Harvard Health. Available at: https://www.health.harvard.edu/diet-and-weight-loss/when-it-comes-to-protein-how-much-is-too-much

Refreshing Vietnamese Spring Rolls

Looking for something light and refreshing for your lunch or dinner? Vietnamese spring rolls should definitely be on your menu lists!

Ingredients

Spring Roll

  • 10 rice paper wrappers
  • 12 medium peeled shrimps
  • 1 medium cucumber, julienned
  • 3 small carrots, julienned
  • 250g baby spinach
  • 250g red cabbage, sliced
  • 130g bean sprouts
  • 130g coriander
  • 60g fresh mint

Dipping Sauce

  • 60g peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 lime
  • 3 tbsp water
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 red chilli, minced

Preparation

  1. Boil a pot of water and heat a pan at the same time. Add the shrimp into the pot and cook for 3 minutes or until well done. Transfer to the ice water bath and drain.
  2. Cut the shrimp into half and put aside.
  3. Dip rice paper wrapper into a bowl of warm water for 10 seconds and spread it flat on the countertop.
  4. For the spring roll: Add some cucumber, carrots, baby spinach, red cabbage, bean sprouts, coriander, and fresh mint onto rice paper wrapper. Tightly roll till 2/3 of rice wrapper and add 3 shrimp pieces before continue rolling. Repeat this step to finish making 10 spring rolls.
  5. For the dipping sauce: Add all ingredients into a sauce bowl and mixed well together. Enjoy the spring rolls by dipping the sauce. Bon Appetit!

Interesting Facts about fruits bring to Health

In general, people only think of vitamin C when they think of fruits. In fact, fruits have much more nutrients than that. Fruits consist of a high amount of antioxidants, which protect your body against diseases. Fruits also the source of minerals like calcium, potassium and phosphorous, as well as vitamins A, B, E, and K. Different bright colours (eg. orange, red, blue and purple) of fruits indicating different health benefits bring to your body.

What are the benefits that fruits bring to health?

Durians: Fantastic news for durian lovers! As durians are a great source of minerals, vitamins and dietary fibre with no cholesterol (plant products do not contain cholesterol). However, do eat durians in moderation as they consist high sugar level which contributes to high-calorie intake.

Bananas: Out of all fruits, bananas consist of the highest level of potassium. With one medium-sized banana, it can provide 10% of the daily recommended intake of potassium for a normal adult. Potassium helps to regulate the functioning of body muscles.

Berries: Berries have the highest amount of antioxidants among all of the fruits. Antioxidants from Berries help to slow down cell aging and fight against diseases.

Want to keep the diseases and doctor away? The magic trick will be two servings of colourful fruits everyday!

Reference: Healthhub.sg. (2020). Fun Fruity Facts for Health [online] Available at: https://www.healthhub.sg/live-healthy/1291/fun-fruity-facts

What you need to know about Vitamin A?

In Singapore, daily intake of 2,500 IU Vitamin A is recommended for a normal adult. Deficiency of vitamin A is not common in Singapore as vitamin A is easy to get from a daily meal. However, excessive vitamin A intake is a concern as this will become toxicity in your body. Vitamin A is needed by your body for better vision, healthy reproductive organs, bones, and skin.

Food that rich in vitamin A:

  • Spinach
  • Eggs
  • Papaya
  • Chicken liver
  • Dairy products (eg. cheese and milk)
  • Sweet potatoes

Here are some symptoms of vitamin A’s deficiency:

´ Poor vision at night

´ Unhealthy bone growth

´ No appetite

´ Dry eyes

´ Inflammation of hair follicles

Still, there could be other causes, you should try to consult a doctor before taking high dosage of vitamin A.

Here are some symptoms of vitamin A toxicity:

´ Unclear vision

´ Headache

´ Pain of muscle

´ Tiredness

´ Vomiting and no appetite

It is better to get nutrients from a well-balanced diet instead of a supplement. Supplementation is not mandatory for everyone unless your doctor advised so.

Reference: Healthxchange.sg. (2020). [online] Available at: https://www.healthxchange.sg/food-nutrition/food-tips/vitamin-a-why-we-need-it

CAN Station @ Republic Polytechnic

Good news peep! Food Canopy’s CAN Station has now come to Republic Polytechnic at Level 3, North Lawn Canteen.

WhatsApp Image 2020-02-07 at 2.44.29 PM (1)

Our CAN Station at North Lawn Canteen is to encourage students and employees of Republic Polytechnic to practice a balanced diet with colourful food choices.

WhatsApp Image 2020-02-07 at 2.44.29 PM

Come over to Republic Polytechnic now to explore how you can achieve your balanced diet easily and to find out more health information, as well as grab some healthier foods from the canteen. Go ahead to write on the sticky note on ‘What are your favourite foods for each colour group?’ and paste it onto the colourful wall 

Crispy Florentine Cookie

Chinese New Year snack is a must on the table during this festival to serve your friends and families. Baking your own snack will be a healthier choice while also having a lovely bonding time with your loved one. A Crispy Florentine cookie is simple yet fast to bake.

Floretine nut

Ingredients
  • 40 g Knife rice bran oil
  • 30 g Sugar
  • 70 g Honey
  • 25 g All-purpose flour
  • 50 ml Water
  • 50 g White sesame seed
  • 50 g Black sesame seed
  • 100 g Pumpkin seed
  • 100 g Sunflower seed
  • 100 g Almond seed
Peparation
  1. Add rice bran oil, sugar, honey, flour and water into mixing bowl. Stir and mix well.
  2. Mix white sesame seed, black sesame seed, pumpkin seed, sunflower seed and almond seed.
  3. Line baking sheet onto a baking tray.
  4. Pour mixture evenly onto the baking tray and sprinkles seeds mixture on it.
  5. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  6. Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown.
  7. Take out from the oven and set aside to cool.

May this Chinese New Year brings you happiness, wealth, longevity, and good fortune! Happy Chinese New Year!

A Chinese New Year with Health and Wealth

Chinese New Year(CNY) eve are just one week away from now on. Reunion and gathering with families and friends are common CNY tradition from CNY eve to 15th day of the New Year. Are your CNY recipes ready for all these gathering meals? By replacing different ingredients, you can actually enjoy all your traditional foods in a much healthier way.

How to Prepare Your Meal in Healthier Way?

Healthy Hot Pot

Steamboat

Preparing steamboat for a big group will be a fuss-free and healthier choice as all foods are cooked in the soup. Cooking own soup with fresh vegetable or pork bone can reduce intake of salt as most of the ready stock have a high amount of salt. Remember to pick the pork collar over the pork belly and buy more chicken or fish instead of lamb or beef. Always go for more mushrooms, vegetables and not forgetting about tofu.

Yu-Sheng

Instead of adding preserved ingredients, simply replace it with carrot, lettuce, radish, cherry tomato and purple cabbage to make your yu-sheng more colourful. Apart from that, putting some fruits (e.g. mango, tangerine, green apple) will enhance the sweetness of the whole dish. Thus, less plum sauce will be added.

 

Reference: Healthhub.sg.(2020). A Healthier Way At Chinese New Year [online] Available at: https://www.healthhub.sg/live-healthy/895/a-healthier-way-to-feast

Iron: How to Avoid Iron Deficiency?

Iron is a kind of trace mineral that is very important for your body health as it helps to transport oxygen all over the body. Iron deficiency is caused by a low amount of iron inside the body and will lead to a low amount of normal red blood cells. How do you avoid yourself from iron deficiency?

Ensure a sufficient amount of iron from your meal

There are two main sources of iron, haem iron which is from animal-based food and non-haem iron which is from plant-based food. Haem iron are easier to absorb by your body than non-haem iron.

Canva - Steak Food (1)

Food that rich in haem iron:

  • Chicken
  • Beef
  • Pork
  • Liver
  • Seafood (e.g. oysters, prawns, fish and clams)

Food that rich in non-haem iron:

  • Spinach
  • Broccoli
  • Brown rice, whole-grain noodles
  • Dried fruit
  • Beans, nuts, seeds

Canva - Sliced Lemon Beside Vegetable on Brown Wooden Chopping Board

Having fruits that rich in vitamin C (e.g. oranges and papayas) with non-haem iron food will increase body absorption of haem iron. By doing this, vegans can maximise absorption of iron to reduce the risk of iron deficiency.

 

Reference: Healthhub.sg. (2020). Low In Energy? You Could Be Low In Iron [online] Available at: https://www.healthhub.sg/live-healthy/1126/low-in-energy-you-could-be-low-in-iron

Processed Food: Healthy or Unhealthy?

Do you have any idea on what is considered as processed food? Generally, people only think that ready food or canned food are considered processed foods. However, any food item that gone through modification in the preparation process is to be considered as processed food.

Canva - A Bakery Scene

Some of the processed food examples consist of:

  • Canned Vegetables
  • Cheese
  • Beverages, e.g. milk or bottled juice
  • Ready food
  • Bread
  • Cereals
  • Biscuits
  • Meats, e.g. luncheon meat or braised pork

Processed food can be a good option too. Certain foods require a preparation process before it is safe to consume. Milk as an example, in order to get rid of harmful bacteria, the milk needs to be disinfected before it is safe to drink. In addition, some foods require food processing before it can be suitable for use, just like seeds oil.

Why is it unhealthy?

Fat, salt or sugar might be added into processed foods. Like fat, salt or sugar will make the foods taste more flavourful and also able to increase shelf life. Eating processed foods with a high amount of fat, salt or sugar results in high calories intake too.

As a conclusion, not every processed food are bad for health. Only processed foods with a high amount of fat, salt and sugar are unhealthy while processed foods with no fat, salt and sugar added are healthy.

 

Reference: nhs.uk. (2020). Eating processed foods. [online] Available at: https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/what-are-processed-foods/

How to reach your calorie intake goal?

1,800 calories and 2,200 calories are the recommended daily calorie intake for an adult woman and adult man accordingly. However, these recommendations are just for general reference. Everybody has their own specific calorie intake goal based on their style of living, weight, age and health status.

Canva - Red Apple Fruits

Practices to Achieve Your Goal

Go for Healthier Choices: Choose dishes with HPB tag on the menu when dining out, these dishes are usually lower in calories, provide whole gains or cook with healthier oil.

Sharing is Caring: When dining out with your friends or colleagues, you can plan to share your food with them if the food portions are huge.

Place a Lesser Amount of Food Order: While having a gathering in a restaurant with your friends and families, the groups tend to order a lot of foods. Before you finish most of the foods, you will probably already exceed your calorie intake.

Flexible: Do take note that calorie intake is a day-to-day goal. So if you have a heavy lunch, do go for a light dinner to achieve your calorie intake goal by the end of the day.

Request for takeaway: If the food portion is more than what you need, you can always ask for takeaway for the remaining food.

 
Reference: Healthhub.sg. (2019). What Should My Daily Calorie Intake Be? [online] Available at: https://www.healthhub.sg/live-healthy/1341/how-much-to-eat-at-each-meal