5 Simple Reasons why it’s Okay to Not Go Full Vegetarian

Going vegetarian in your diet (not consuming meat and dairy products, such as milk and cheese) can have a lot of health benefits, but because of a hectic schedule, it can be difficult diet to follow through.

The good news is that there’s no need to forgo meat and dairy products entirely. In fact, here are a few reasons why it can still be okay to still eat meat and dairy products along with fruits and vegetables:

1. Vegetarian products can get expensive fast.
As part of the shift in your diet, you would want to start buying products that don’t use meat or dairy products. However, as you go on, you would find that doing so can easily put a strain on your wallet.

2. Preparing your own meals can take time.
To stay committed to your shift towards a vegetarian diet, you may also want to start preparing your own food. However, this can take more time than you would like, especially with vegetable dishes.

The good news is you don’t always have to cook your own food. In fact, there are a lot of hawker stalls that offer vegetarian options in Singapore, and there are a good number of vegetarian restaurants.

3. You may end up with a vitamin B-12 deficiency.
B-vitamins are attached to animal proteins, and are responsible for factors such as stress management and brain function. However, this can be difficult to find outside of animal products, which is why a B-12 deficiency can be a potentially serious risk.

However, there are non-meat options to get this vitamin into your system, such as shitake mushrooms and even nutritional yeast.

4. You might be at risk of lower bone density.
Calcium is easily found in cow’s milk and cheese, but outside of animal products, it can be a little tricky to find the calcium that your body needs in order to keep your bones strong.

Luckily, there are other alternatives to cow’s milk and cheese to give you the calcium that your body needs, such as nuts and legumes. Feel free to pick up a healthy trail snack for your daily calcium needs!

5. Processed food can easily be an alternative to meat and dairy products.
You can go without meat or dairy products – most processed food is easily made without either – and you could still be at risk of a lot of conditions later on in life.

And because of the lack of protein in your diet, you will start to fill that in with a lot of carbohydrates and sugars. While they are fine in moderation (in fact, your body needs carbohydrates to break down into energy), too many carbohydrates can easily lead to weight gain and other health issues.

A Beginner’s Guide to Start Being Vegetarian in Singapore

If there’s one thing Southeast Asian food (and especially Singaporean food) is not, it’s being vegetarian-friendly. You’ll find that many dishes can contain fish paste or fish sauce, if not fried directly in lard, and many more dishes have meat or are meat-based.

However, it’s completely possible to make the switch and cut down on consuming meat and dairy products – and what you need to do is research.

Why Vegetarian?
Whether you’re curious, or really believe in the impact that giving up meat can cause, there are a lot of reasons why you should go vegetarian.

Perhaps the biggest reason is health. There are many components in meat that can contribute to cancer and other types of health issues, such as an increased risk for cardiovascular diseases. However, there are also environmental and ethical reasons why people make the switch to a vegetarian diet.

Getting Your Daily Nutrients
The biggest question that beginning vegetarians ask is where to get protein outside of meat, animal, and dairy products. While the biggest substitutes are soy and tofu, they’re not the only substitutes to protein.

In fact, you can even meet your daily protein requirement with other non-soy sources, such as nuts, seeds, and grains. A quick trail snack with different nuts and fruits can often give you the protein your body needs.

Other nutrients that are often found in animal products are iron, calcium, and even omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which can also be found in plant foods ranging from dark leafy greens to corn, to even algae.

Cooking Your Meals
Because there aren’t a lot of vegan-friendly options in Southeast Asian food, your next biggest decision would be to start cooking your own food yourself to stay consistent with not eating animal products.

While you get full control over what you eat, you also have to cook the vegetables in a way that makes it taste good while maximizing their nutritional content. More specifically, you need to balance carbohydrates, protein, vitamins, and good fats with every meal.

And when you’re feeling cravings between meals, there are a lot of foods that can be great in-between meals, from nuts, fruits, granola bars, to even chips!

Buying Groceries
As you go along towards a vegetarian diet, you will find that the wet market is your best friend and you will find almost everything you need to prepare every meal. From local to imported vegetables, fruits, seasoning, and even condiments and dried foods.

You can also find a lot of options in your local supermarket, such as soymilk and tofu. If you’re lucky, you can even find different kinds of foods (i.e. seeds or organic grains) that you wouldn’t find in wet markets, but in the health section.

5 of the Best Cafés in Singapore

 

Singapore is known for being a shopping and dining capital in Southeast Asia. As one of, if not the busiest ports in the world, Singapore has become a melting pot of cultures as evidenced in our food or the people themselves.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The hustle and bustle of this busy city, however, makes it difficult for anyone to look for a serene place to probably enjoy a cup of coffee while basking in the ambience of the beautiful cityscape of Singapore or to simply love the company of good friends or of a good book.

Cafés come to mind when we think of a place where we can do those things. And so with that, we listed down some of the best cafés offering the best coffees in Singapore.

  1. Ronin

The coffee they use here is a blend imported from Australia and is considered as one of the best in Singapore. Ronin’s coffee has a strong and full flavor and is best served together with cream or milk. A lot of people consider the café a great place to relax in while sipping a delicious cup of Joe. Some people also enjoy brunching in Ronin, particularly with their French toast.

  1. Symmetry

The best part of Symmetry is their ambience, which makes the café an ideal place for those who love a relaxing atmosphere. Their coffee, imported from Guatemala, isn’t too bad either being a full-bodied blend of chocolaty and nutty flavors. The most popular thing in the menu is the truffle fries that are best paired with waffles for one of the best brunching experiences you’ll ever have.

  1. Nylon Coffee Roasters

Nylon is best for those who have a great appreciation for the sheer taste of coffee. Nylon brews their own coffee, though their flavors are inspired by international tastes. The espresso blend depends on the season. That’s why the flavor constantly changes. All this makes Nylon as one of the most recommended cafes in all of Singapore.

nylon-coffee-roasters01

  1. Department of Caffeine

While coffee is their main business, it’s not all about the drink at the Department of Caffeine. In fact, they may even be better known for their food. This has made it a popular choice for diners and it is almost always packed with customers. For those looking for an ambience of a café but would like to enjoy the food of a restaurant, the Department of Caffeine is something that should be strongly considered.

  1. Yellow Cup Coffee

If you want to brighten up your day, Yellow Cup is the place for you. The vibrant ambience of the place would cheer almost anyone instantly. Plus, the coffee is just as cheerful as well drawing inspiration from Hawaiian flavors but with coffee sourced from different parts of the world most especially from Africa.

Hoopla_Wifi_Singapore

Newton Food Center – Nothing has Changed

Despite the many restaurants and food stalls established in Singapore, there is still one restaurant that is unique when it comes to recipes and signature dishes. This is Newton Food Center, a food hub that was built years ago. Even if the time has passed by, there are still no changes made in this food store that is why it is very popular in the country.

Newton-1

Newton Food Center is widely known by locals as the Newton Circus because aside from their appetizing, delightful and mouth-watering dishes, they have the most pleasant environment and commendable staff as well as happy and satisfied customers.

Here, you are not going to reserve some tables and chairs since you will have to grab one once you arrive at the venue. So, before you order your meals, be sure that you occupy a vacant seat to be comfortable while eating. Also, you have to be patient because it will probably take time ordering your food.

20130820_223318

As being said, customers here are satisfied and happy not just about the food they eat but also because of the large crowd in the restaurant. This is a very busy place since there are many bookings made for a birthday celebration, family gatherings, wedding, christening and significant events in a person’s life.

Since Newton Food Center preserved its natural beauty until today, there’s no doubt that it can be recognized not just by its great and sumptuous meals but because of the good looks and praiseworthy staffs of the restaurant.

1167

 

Various Types of Sugars and Sweeteners

For some Singaporeans, sugars are their sweet friend. They should be careful because according to research, sugars can contribute to your early demise. The largest source of calories for some Singaporeans emanates from sugar. Your soft drinks, fruit juices, pretzels, cheese spread, infant formula and other foods contain sugar.

getty_rm_photo_of_sweeteners

Obesity is a global epidemic. It is not only happening in Singapore. It is important that everyone is aware of the various types of sugars and sweeteners so they can avoid and deal with it. Everyone should be mindful that too much consumption of sugars can increase your risk and it can eventually lead to deadly conditions.

So, for your safety and the people around you, you should be able to identify different types of sugars and sweeteners. Here’s an overview:

sugar-types-spoons

  • Monosaccharides: Examples of monosaccharides include glucose, fructose and dextrose. They are simple sugars.
  • Disaccharide sucrose: If you combine simple sugars, they are called disaccharide sucrose. The famous disaccharide sucrose is table sugar.
  • HFCS: High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) is comprise of 55% of fructose and 45% of glucose.
  • Sugar alcohols: Sugar alcohols are becoming popular. They are called sweeteners. Examples include sorbitol, xylitol, erythritol, glycerol and many more.
  • Agave syrup: Agave syrup is highly processed. That means it contain 80% of fructose. It is not advisable for its fructose content.
  • Honey: Honey constitutes about 53% of fructose. Honey is perhaps the most beneficial of all sugar types. If taken into moderation, it can be an antioxidant. 

Now that you can differentiate the types of sugar, you will know what to avoid. That is better than consuming it blindly.

Sweeteners

How to Prepare Chilli Crab

Many would agree when you say that chilli crab is one of the greatest dishes here in Singapore. If you are a crab enthusiast, this dish will surely excite your taste buds. The dish is known for its red, tasty and fluffy attributes. You can find this dish at many seafood restaurants and food centres. crab_chilli

But if you want to prepare the dish yourself, you can do it. There is nothing impossible when you set your heart to it. Your family and friends will be happy and proud when you make some. To be guided, here are some things that you need to do when preparing to cook for chilli crab:

 Ingredients

For chilli crab, you need 450 grams of crabs (mud or soft shelled), 4 tablespoon of flour, 3 tablespoon of vegetable oil, 8 garlic cloves (chopped), 8 pieces red chilli (chopped), 1 piece egg, 2 pieces scallions, 1 teaspoon lemon juice and 1 piece cilantro.

02-chilli-crab-ingredients

Sauce

Before actually cooking the crab, you need to prepare the sauce first. For the sauce, you need 5 tablespoon tomato ketchup, 3 tablespoon sugar, 1 ½ teaspoon corn flour, ¼ teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon dark miso and 1 cup of water. You only need to mix all.

Start Cooking

When everything is ready, you can now start cooking. The first thing that you need to do is heat the oil then sauté garlic for at least one minute. After that, you need to put chilli and stir it until you can smell the aroma. You can now put the mud crabs. You can add the sauce when you notice the redness of the shell. Finally, you need to break the eggs, beat it and simmer until it is cooked.

This dish is best when you are using your fingers. You can order toasted buns to wipe out all the gravy left in your plate. Happy cooking! It is understandable if you don’t get it perfect the first time but do not worry because you will get better as time goes by.

Singapore chilli crab cooking 2