Find out if your favourite dessert is ruining your weight loss plans.
Would you want to run for upwards of 20 minutes* to end your meal on a sweet note? Even though dessert portions in Singapore are typically small and gone in a few mouthfuls, they could pack even more fat and calories than a cheeseburger, which clock in at 298 calories with 12g of fat. Some of these culprits may even surprise you. Is your favourite dessert one of them? Check the list below to find out.
Peanut or walnut paste
Rich in oils and naturally occurring fats, it’s no wonder these creamy desserts are so flavourful and satisfying. On the upside, they’re full of good minerals like copper, iron, calcium and zinc, but on the downside, they’ll bust your calorie allotment real quick. Peanut paste has 342 calories and 20.4g of fat, while walnut paste has 321.2 calories and 21.9g of fat. Technically speaking, sesame paste narrowly escapes this list with 11.7g of fat, but it has 349.1 calories per bowl, more than any of its counterparts, so watch out. Surprisingly, almond paste has just 215 calories per serving, though it has 11.3g of fat, so if you really need your nutty fix, this may be the one to go for.
Bubor cha cha
Such a lovely dessert. You can have it warm or cold, and the starchy and chewy bits of sweet potato, yam, and tapioca swimming in a sweet soup of coconut milk is so pleasantly moreish. This yummy combination comes at a price though — it has 358 calories and 23.7g of fat. You may be amazed to know that that’s about the same amount of calories and fat you’ll get with three pieces of fried chicken drumsticks.
Tang yuan with yam, red bean or sesame filling
Aww, these little glutinous balls floating in soup seem cute, but each filled morsel is about 70 calories or more with around 3–4g of fat! And you’re definitely not helping matters if you get them in peanut soup. In this case, the saying “you are what you eat” would definitely seem true. If you don’t want to look like a dumpling, avoid this sweet treat!
It’s a big serving, so we hope this won’t be dessert for you. But if you’re considering this for your post-meal sweet treat, know that even the plain version has 352.5 calories and 15.1g of fat, and none of the excitement that a cheeseburger induces. Add toppings and you can throw your weight loss plans out the window. Add any of the toppings (red bean paste, blueberry jam, peanut butter or kaya) and you’re upping the calories by 40–190 calories and up to 9g of fat (red bean paste is the worst offender both in calorie count and fat content, see a pattern here?).
(Also read: Eat Healthier Desserts, Snacks and Drinks)
Chendol with durian or mango topping
A regular bowl of chendol isn’t the healthiest with 277 calories and 9.4g of fat. But when you add mango or durian toppings, that’s when you’re really splurging. Adding mango bumps up numbers to 333.2 calories and 14.2g fat. If you go for calorie-heavy durian instead, you’re looking at 408.8 calories and 19.2g of fat. You could practically have another meal for that amount.
Wife pastry (Lao po bing)
It hardly seems fair that this chewy, flat pastry that’s gone in a few bites has 306.9 calories and 15.5g of fat. You could even have a whole bowl of chendol and save yourself some calories. Something to think about before picking this up as a mid-day office snack.
Nutritional information from the Health Promotion Board’s Energy & Nutrient Composition of Food website.
*Calculated based on someone weighing 54kg jogging at 11km/hr.
(Also read: Recipe: Sugar-Free Black Sesame Ice Cream)