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Thailand makes you fat

Tim Newton

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Thailand makes you fat | The Thaiger

by Tim Newton

I came to Thailand as a fit, healthy 70 kilogram Australian.

After six years in Thailand I’m now a reasonably fit, healthy 76 kilogram Australian.

Why? Well, Thai food, despite its healthy appearance and fresh origins is also full of fats, sugars and salt. For example, compare your average Big Mac to an average Pad Thai and there’s at least double the kilojoules (or calories) in the Pad Thai. (There’s plenty of variation in Pad Thai servings but we took an average from three websites reporting on the nutritional value of Thai food). One website went as far as reporting that your average Pad Thai had FOUR times as many calories in it.

(A big Mac has 257 calories (1075 kilojoules) per 100 grams of weight and weighs approx. 200 grams)

Whilst Thai food is generally fresh, cooked quickly, full of nutrition (vegetables, carbohydrates and protein), it’s also full of calories.

But the problem goes deeper than this. And it partly answers the question as to why Thais, as a population, are growing taller and fatter than in the past – they’re getting a lot more calories than in the past.

Head to your local convenience store and scan the shelves. Anything fresh is difficult to find. Many foods that would have traditionally come without sugar are laced with additional sugar – yogurt, fruit juice, bread,  just to start with.

Anecdotally, I would suggest that the ingredients for your average Thai meal have evolved over the past 100 years and now there is a lot more salts, sugars, MSG and saturated fats than a century ago (the MSG argument is something for another time).

Of course, all these things make most foods taste better, I won’t deny it.

Thai food is still a great source of all the nutrients you need to get through the day but eating large Thai meals with lost of noodles and white rice is not going to help you return to your 20 year old surfer body. White rice has about as much nutrition as cardboard. Cook it in a sea of saturated fat (fried rice) and you’re on the way to a big calorie intake.

Nutritionists recommend avoiding six types of Thai foods including Pad Thai, yellow, green and red curries, Tom Kha soup (Tom Yum is ok), stir fries and Thai tea (the orange sweet milky concoction).

Well, that’s about every Thai meal I love 🙁

chefjohnhowie.com has a list of Thai food dos and don’ts.

Meanwhile Hayden Rhodes, GM at RPM Health Club in Phuket, says there are three things to take into account when consuming our beloved Thai food.

1) Most food is fried, many times in cheap nasty rancid vegetable oils. Avoid fried Thai food.

2) Thai food over the years has followed the SAD… standard American & Australian Diet (very SAD) which means consuming more sugar per head per year. Sugar makes you fat. Period. Ask for no sugar to be added to Thai dishes (yes- it’s in everything!)

3) A lot of Thai food is full of chemicals ‘fresh from the farm’; detoxification processes will be hampered – body fat will be stored. Ask your fancy hotel or beach club where their food comes from and 99% will likely be ‘Macro’. Find out who uses organic ingredients and eat there. Yes – this will have a direct impact on your energy, mineral content in your body and your fat line… oops I meant waist line.”

Add to the high calorific content of all our favorite Thai foods is the relatively inexpensive and plentiful alcohol and street food stalls every 50 metres along any road and you’re heading for a fright when you step onto the scales. It’s also a lot easier to jump on the motorbike in Thailand to travel short distances we might have happily walked back in our home country.

So next time you see a friend heading into McDonalds for a Big Mac, rather than fat-shaming them, they might actually be trying to lose weight! (We certainly don’t recommend eating Bic Macs or ‘fast food’  too often though)

Health aficionados and doctors would always recommend a balanced food intake with fresh food at the top of the list along with regular exercise, at any age.

Good advice! So it’s back to the swimming pool and gym, and choosing Tom Yum over Pad Thai.

Thailand makes you fat | News by The Thaiger

(per 100 grams of weight)

 



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Tim Newton has lived in Thailand since 2012. An Australian, he has worked in the media, principally radio and TV, for nearly 40 years. He has won the Deutsche Welle Award for best radio talk program, presented 3,200 radio news bulletins in Thailand alone, hosted 360 daily TV news programs, produced 1,800 videos, TV commercials and documentaries and now produces digital media for The Thaiger - Website, Radio, TV, Instagram and Facebook.

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Food Scene

Phuket’s Top 10 Brunches

The Thaiger

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Phuket’s Top 10 Brunches | The Thaiger

Brunch has become a weekend staple on the island and its seems everyone has their own take on this beloved mix of two meals… a chance to slow down, enjoy some amazing food and try a little bit of everything.

Whether you want something casual or prefer taking a boat to a private island, Phuket gives you the options to do it your way. 

Here are Phuket’s Top 10 Brunches on the island, with options for everyone. You don’t have to max out your card to indulge in a good brunch, just bring an empty stomach.

TWINPALMS SUNDAY BRUNCH

Offering a fabulous array of cuisine in a stylish setting and one of the first brunches to launch on Phuket and has a steadfast reputation of being the place to be seen.

Begin with a Bloody Mary and enjoy the freshest lobster, king crab, prawns, oysters, mussels and sushi and sashimi, all offered in abundance.

Light salads are dotted around to complement the food and for those who crave something a little heavier the roasted meats and hot dishes will not disappoint. Cheese lovers will be delighted to find that the selection is varied and suitably stinky and may be all washed down with a rich glass of port.

Of course, desserts are truly scrumptious, and the signature chocolate fountain is a devilishly delicious pot of sweetness for fresh berries to be dunked into.

Guests may choose whether to enjoy half a bottle of wine or to opt for a free flow of champagne, prices vary according to taste.

Every Sunday 12pm until 3pm.

THB 1,690++ including 1/2 bottle of wine (red/white/sparkling) per person

THB 7,380++ per couple, including a bottle of Champagne

Website | Facebook | 

Phuket's Top 10 Brunches | News by The Thaiger Phuket's Top 10 Brunches | News by The Thaiger

The Naka Island : Sunday brunch on the island

Every first Sunday of the month, escape from the busy city life and enjoy the beauty of nature with the “Sunday Brunch on the Island” at Naka Yai, which is only a 10-minute boat ride from Ao Por Grand Marina. Enjoy the most exquisite culinary pleasures with fresh seafood, authentic Thai food, pastas, Live BBQ stations, variety of desserts, and much more. After the brunch, enrich your mind by lounging on the tropical beaches, splashing in the pool or exploring our Naka Yai Island by joining the destination discovery program.

Situated within lush coconut groves and stunning beaches with unobstructed views of the emerald green Andaman Sea and Phang Nga Bay, The Naka Island, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa, Phuket invites discerning travelers to stay in elegant villas, savor gourmet dining experience at the restaurants, and enrich their life with memorable experiences and spa retreats, all enhanced by personalized service.  

THB 2,600++ Water and soft drink included 

THB 3,200++ Half bottle per person from selected wines 

THB 3,900++ Half bottle per person of Nicolas Feuillatte Champagne

Website Facebook | 

Phuket's Top 10 Brunches | News by The Thaiger Phuket's Top 10 Brunches | News by The Thaiger

Banyan Tree

The Banyan Tree Brunch experience returns with a generous selection of live fresh, local and imported seafood with exceptional Lobster dishes, Japanese starters, mouth-watering meats, Asian wok and Western grill treats. Gourmet cuisine, exceptional service, Live Jazz and tranquil surroundings, Our brunch has something for everyone!

THB 2,800 Net – Food buffet

THB 3,400 Net – Includes free flow beer, select cocktails and soft drinks

THB 4,000 Net –  Includes free slow select wines and bubbly

Phuket's Top 10 Brunches | News by The Thaiger

Xana Beach Club Sunday Fun Brunch

XANA’s Sunday Fun Brunch is an ideal weekend escape for the whole family, with a special discount for children aged 6-12, and complimentary dining for all kids under 6 years old. What’s more, a ‘Kids Corner’ will be set up for children to help make this dining experience a fun family activity for all. 

THB 1,450++ Sunday Fun Buffet Brunch

THB 2,250++ with free flow of house wine, sparkling wine, beer and signature cocktails

PHOTO: Hotels.com

Phuket's Top 10 Brunches | News by The Thaiger

The Nai Harn Phuket 

Guest can savor delectable creations prepared by culinary maestro, Executive Chef Mark Jones, while enjoying spectacular views over Naiharn Bay and listening to the sounds of Resident DJ Sun. For the first three Sundays in January Savoy London American Bar Legend Salim Khoury will stir and shake your martinis.

THB 2,200 NET – per child aged from 6 to 18 (with free flow juices and soft drinks)

THB 5,500 NET – per adult (with free flow Metodo Classico and Martini Bar)

Phuket's Top 10 Brunches | News by The Thaiger

Trisara 

A mid-morning repast on our sunwashed decks with live jazz and the melody of waves tumbling onto shore. A curated menu of exotic and familiar fare, delivered in small plates, the very best seafood and open Barbeque leaves plenty of room for tasting and conversation. Phuket’s must-do Sunday dining experience.

THB 2,600++ Food only

THB 3,200++ Food with a bottle of wine for 2

THB 3,900++ Food with a bottle of Champagne for 2

Phuket's Top 10 Brunches | News by The Thaiger

Hilton Phuket Arcadia 

The recently refreshed Sunday family brunch at Hilton Phuket Arcadia offers great culinary options for locals and foreigners with an international menu containing a wide variety of Thai and western dishes. Live music performers and a great family atmosphere complement the fantastic food selection, making this Sunday Brunch a must for families and friends staying around Karon beach.    

THB 999++ Food only 

THB 750 ++ Drink package including house wine, sparkling wine, beer 7 cocktails

Photo: A day to chill

Phuket's Top 10 Brunches | News by The Thaiger

The Boathouse 

Happening every last Sunday of the month, enjoy a full gastronomic delicacies ranging from Oyster Selection, Maine Lobster, Foie Gras, Charcutiere Platter, Prime Beef, Great French Cheeses and more.

THB 1,990++ including free flow soft drinks

THB 2,990++ including free flow wines

THB 3,990++ including free flow Piper Heidseick Brut

Phuket's Top 10 Brunches | News by The Thaiger

The Slate 

A proud tradition of what is often considered as Phuket’s most renowned Sunday brunch, we continue to hold strong with an exeptional landscape of gastronomy presented at the dreamscapes ‘River’ restaurant and poolside at Underground Cafe. 

THB 2,450++ including free flow soft drinks

THB 3,450++ Including free flow wine, sparkling, local larger and craft beer 

THB 4,050++ Veuve for 2 –  A bottle of Veuve Clicquot (75cl) to share

THB 6,200++ Including free flow Veuve Clicquot

Phuket's Top 10 Brunches | News by The Thaiger

Novotel Surin

The delightful brunch features both international and Thai dishes, every Sunday from 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm. International cuisine includes the live sushi bar, Greek salad, bread corner, pizza and pasta selection. Thai dishes include Roasted chicken, Green curry with fish ball, stir-fried chicken with mushroom and cashew nuts, Tom Yam Goong, Banana Roti live station and more!

THB 599++ Including water and juices

Phuket's Top 10 Brunches | News by The Thaiger

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Bangkok

Bangkok Tonight: La Casa Nostra restaurant pop-up at Small’s Bar

The Thaiger

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Bangkok Tonight: La Casa Nostra restaurant pop-up at Small’s Bar | The Thaiger

If you live in Bangkok I know that it can be easy to very overwhelmed by all the choices around you, whether it is food, drink or partying, you have a lot of options, but not tonight.

Tonight head down to Sathorn’s Soi Suam Plu, for a very special pop-up event being hosted at one of Bangkok’s most celebrated and award winning bars, ‘Smalls’.

They will be hosting chef Nino Scognamillo from La Casa Nostra, one of the most talked about new restaurants in Bangkok, not only for its extensive wine list, but also for bringing rustic and authentic flavours of Italy to the heart of the big mango.

Nino has worked with the Jamie Oliver group in London, the iconic Sydney’s Yacht Squadron and after working in Phuket now runs the kitchen in the at La Casa Nostra.

Offering a small selection of his menu’s favourites, don’t miss a chance to try chef Nino’s famous roasted Mediterranean octopus on white truffle potato velute’ (320 baht) and his Catabrian anchovies with his homemade tomato relish (390 baht).

Small’s bar owner David Jacobson, has become a Bangkok icon with his cemented history in the bar and nightclub scene. A renown celebrity photographer, Jacobson has worked with stars such as  David Bowie, Robert De Niro ad Andy Warhol, recently he has been highlighting different chefs in the Bangkok food scene in his Soi Suam Plu watering hole with various pop ups.

For the Facebook Event page click HERE.

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Bangkok

Maravilloso. Taco Bell is coming to Bangkok, but we have options

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Maravilloso. Taco Bell is coming to Bangkok, but we have options | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: BK-Asia, Taco Bell

A media release says that Taco Bell is opening its first Thailand location on the first floor of Mercuryville mall in central Bangkok. Partnering with Siam Taco Company, part of TTA (Thoresen Thai Agencies) they bring the Mexican-inspired cuisine to the big mango in early 2019.

Although we are all waiting on the edge of our seats for the opening of Taco Bell there are other options available, some would say even better. We haven’t even told you about their results of weeks of in-market researching of the ‘Kickin’ Chicken Taco’, a specialty item developed specifically for the Thai market. No matter, you’ll be able to test drive it for yourself soon.

We believe there are better ways to indulge your Mexican desires, so here we propose three options to fulfill your taco cravings in Bangkok:

The Missing Burro

Maravilloso. Taco Bell is coming to Bangkok, but we have options | News by The Thaiger

Two Mexican brothers have been making a name for themselves with their authentic Mexican cuisine, maybe its time you find out why.

El Mariachi

Maravilloso. Taco Bell is coming to Bangkok, but we have options | News by The Thaiger

It’s all about the tortillas right? Well here they are made in house every step of the way, a husband and wife team are leaving their mark in On Nut’s Habito Mall.

La Monita

Maravilloso. Taco Bell is coming to Bangkok, but we have options | News by The Thaiger

It’s late, you just finished work, where do you get tacos and a beer? La Monita. They also make their tortillas in house, so go, hurry.

Buen Provecho.

SOURCE: The Nation

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