What do doctors choose to eat during their lunch? Since they would be the people who know best what to, and what not to eat?

We speak to 5 doctors from Raffles Medical Group to get recommendations of what to eat when dining out and some very useful health and diet tips.

The beginning of the year is usually a start of New Year resolutions, a return to the gym and healthy eating. You will find out that healthy meals do not need to be boring.

Dr Stanley Liew, Specialist in Endocrinology & Consultant, Raffles Diabetes & Endocrine Centre

Most Japanese foods are healthy, but I try to avoid fried food, tempura and tonkotsu ramen. The Japanese have one of the world’s longest life expectancy, and a very low obesity rate. These healthy statistics are unlikely due to genetic factors alone. It is believed to be contributed by their unique diet.

Dining tip: Like the Japanese, I encourage the use of chopsticks during dining, which would likely lead to less food being shoved into the mouth.

When the eating experience is slow and unhurried, this may help the brain in processing the visual and satiety signals that the body is full, which avoid overeating. On average, Japanese eat approximately 25% less calories daily compared to Americans.

Wonton noodle soup. It contains less than 300 calories per bowl. In order to reduce the high salt content, you can leave some of the soup behind.

Dr Watt Wing Fong, Specialist in Obstetrics & Gynaecology & Consultant, Raffles Women’s Centre

Japanese food such as Sashimi. Fish is generally good for health, as it can be a rich source of protein and DHA, while the accompanying seaweed is a good source for calcium and minerals.

Tofu is also a good source of proteins and calcium. Some beef such as sukiyaki may be good as it is rich in iron and vitamin B12.

Ms Claudia Correia, Dietician, Raffles Diabetes & Endocrine Centre

Thunder tea rice. It is very filling, low in fat, high in fibre, has plenty of vegetables and is low in calories. Moreover, without the ikan bilis, it is a great meal option for vegetarians. Perfect for someone who wants to lose or maintain a healthy weight. One of the stalls I frequent is at Suntec City’s Food Republic.

Yong tau foo soup. For a meal to be healthy, it must be balanced in all these nutrients. I would choose Yong Tau Foo Soup without any fried items and with tofu, plenty of vegetables and with noodles or rice only (without drinking the soup) or a vegetables soup (without creamer).

Salads. A reminder that salads should have a maximum of 1tbsp dressing, preferably with a boiled egg and with some legumes, brown rice or multigrain bread as a healthy and light meal.

Dining tip: Do not just eat fruits entirely for a meal. An ideal diet is one that incorporates all food groups to ensure the adequate intake of all the nutrients: protein, carbohydrates, fat, vitamins and minerals. Sometimes the amount of fruits that someone will eat as a meal will have more calories than a “normal” meal; will only provide carbohydrates and will be lacking in protein and in healthy fats.

Dr Shirley Kwee, General Practitioner, Raffles Health Screeners, Marina Bay Financial Centre

Baked potatoes. They give a slow and steady stream of glucose, which is a main source of energy for us. Match it with lettuce, tomatoes, onions, green peppers which supply fibre, protein, as well as antioxidants.

Sliced fish soup. The tip is to choose those which contain the clear fragrant broth that has had fish bones boiling in it, not the one with MSG and fried fish fillets.

Dining tip: Using bigger plates or bowls, they give an illusion of eating less.

Dr Lee Yian Ping, Specialist in Cardiology & Consultant, Raffles Heart Centre

Kimchi. Kimchi is an excellent source of probiotics – these are the good bacteria that help your body fight off various infections. The pickled vegetables also contain vitamin A, some B vitamins, iron, calcium, and selenium, which all contribute to supporting muscle growth, improve your immune system, and improve blood flow. The Koreans eat them regularly, and Kimchi do have the ability to lower cholesterol levels when eaten on a daily basis.

Garlic. Garlic is one of the key ingredients in Korean cuisine, and is a great source of both allicin and selenium. Allicin is a compound that can reduce cholesterol levels, which will help decrease chances of developing strokes and heart attacks. Selenium can help lower cholesterol levels by preventing cholesterol plaque from building up in your artery walls.

Dining Tip: With that said, go easy on eating Korean BBQ. When you cook meat, a chemical reaction turns creatine into a group of compounds called heterocyclic amines (HCAs) and there is some evidence that these cause cancer in high concentrations.

Cooking at high heat can also produce a chemical reaction between the fat and protein in meat, creating toxins called advanced glycation end products, or AGEs. These toxins are linked to the imbalance of antioxidants in the body, along with inflammation, can lead to an increased risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

BBQ can be safer if food is not burnt or cooked at high temperatures. It may be better to do a slow grill and remove the charred portions before consumption.

Giveaway Ended
Raffles Medical Group will be giving away 5 X $100 shopping vouchers to readers of DanielFoodDiary.com

Step 1: LIKE www.facebook.com/rafflesmedgrp and follow @RafflesMedGrp on Instagram
Step 2: Post a picture of your healthy lunch on Instagram with hashtag #EatWellwithRaffles (Accounts need to be public to view entries. Participants may submit as many entries as they wish.)
Step 3: Share one reason in the caption why the meal is healthy.

[Giveaway Ended] Contest ends on 11 February 2015. Winner will be selected and announced on Raffles’s Instagram and Facebook page.

*This entry is brought to you in partnership with Raffles Medical Group



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