Eating Right during the Office Lunch Break: How and Where

Posted on Posted in diet

This article is just a general approach to healthier, balanced eating for the average individual. If you are looking for a specific and customized approach for weight loss and muscle-building, please consult a professional.

As we see an upcoming trend in people eating healthier in Singapore, more and more are heading towards the clean way of eating.

While stuffing down strictly prepared home-cooked food may be a cut-throat success, certainly packing the munchies isn’t a realistic long-term system for us rat racers in the office (unless you are looking to compete or cutting for a photo shoot). And when we eat out, a lot of what goes into our foods are out of control. Also, do we know how to much to eat?  We get slewed around by words like “calories”, “carbs” etc. , we try often to keep track but more often than not, it is a hassle for the busy office worker.

Now here’s a more efficient way to do so – the Hand Measure Guide (extracted from Precision Nutrition ):

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Diagrams extracted from precisionnutrition.com

 

Okay. So now we roughly have an idea of how to portion out your food.

The PROBLEM:

1) Most restaurants, cafes and eateries in town do not CARE about your body. As long as it makes their food taste good, they will not hesitate to put TOO MUCH oil, sugar, sauce, cream etc. (Think Char Kway Teow, Cai Fan, Mee Goreng). This is already in excess of your 1 thumb fat rule.

2) Unless you go to steakhouses or restaurants that serve entrees, it is difficult to find places that give you a good fist-sized meat. Honestly, even the franchise Salad places seem to ration their meat servings painstakingly for additional dollars.

The SOLUTION:

Customizable Hi-Protein Salad Eateries

Yes. As society is getting fitter and recognize the need for a higher protein diet, such takeaway eateries are increasing in numbers to cater to our CBD gym-goers. You can be sure to get at least a fist-sized protein source, a salad base and also great low-GI carbs. Such eateries usually let you choose the sides and sauces rather than drenching them in pre-made honey mayo.

Now before your colleague starts judging you, go ahead and drag them along on a hunting mission for healthier eats. Make a pact together never to fall asleep again during office meetings.

So to begin, here’s a few go-tos for getting good hi-protein nutritious foods in the CBD area:


The Daily Cut

Where: 1 Raffles Place #B3-31 One Raffles Place

The Daily Cut is certainly one of my favorite places to get my post-workout meal. When you arrive, you will fill in a form that is very systematically structured: Tick and choose your protein source, carb source and several toppings.

The Daily Cut definitely offers great selections of carbs with low glycemic index (Sweet Potatoes, Brown Rice, etc.), and best if you are on the ketosis diet, you can simply choose a complete lettuce base.

With portions of “Regular”,”Large” or “Beast”, you can get great lean meat cuts such as turkey and chicken breast, and if you’re feeling it, just top-up a few bucks to get a salmon or sirloin steak. Vegetarians also have tofu as a protein choice. Following the protein sources, you can also add on other toppings such as couscous, quinoa, eggs, edamame, broccoli etc.

Overall definitely a decadent lunch packed with nutrition for power people.

dailycut

BUT, be careful with drenching your salad with too much sauce or else you’re still raking in some significant amount of sugar.

Admittedly, I’ve whopped up a “Beast” portion in my earlier days. Personally I always choose Chicken Breast, Lettuce Base, Cherry Tomatoes, Broccoli, Almonds, Sous Egg and a little bit of honey mustard for taste. They even offer pepper and salt now for those of you who are sugar-conscious.

 


Saladsmith Munch

Where: Multiple Outlets at http://www.munch.sg/#franchise

This is another great eatery that I always head to whenever I want to pack in the protein sources. Their menu items consists of the following combination: 1 portion of meat + 1 or 2 Salads. What’s unique about this franchise is their already-made salads so that you can simply pick and choose which flavors you feel like it. The meat offerings are Chicken (Breast or Thigh), Salmon, Dory Fillet and Bratwurst Sausage. They have a whole range of pre-made salads such as Chicken Grape Walnut, Soba Noodles, Broccoli or even Egg Mayo.

munch
Photo by @starryjan at burpple.com

 

I personally go for Chicken Breast, Eggs and Broccoli. I know I sound like a boring freak but honestly it’s tasteful enough and not heavily laden with too much sauces!


 

The Lawn Cafe

Where: 2 Outlets – The AXA Tower and 31 Biopolis Way

Another great place to “Meat Your Greens”. A hi-protein salad concept with freshly grilled meats that you can fully customize or order from their already prepared combination. This is definitely one of my other favorite places to eat. There is a wide range of meats such as beef, chicken, duck and seafood. You can even choose different flavors from Maple Infusion Chicken, Cajun Chicken, Grilled Salsa Duck to Ben’s Beef Rub. Moreover, you can top your salad base with unique toppings such as Alfafa, Couscous, Sunflower Seeds, Granola (careful on this one though), grapes etc. Their salad dressings also have interesting names so be sure to read through all of it and choose what you like. If you’re indecisive like me, then go for the Honeyball, it’s a safe bet.

Photo taken from http://www.foodprints-sg.com
Photo taken from http://www.foodprints-sg.com

My personal favorite: Double portion Maple Infusion Chicken topped with Almonds, Parmesan, Broccoli and Eggs with HoneyBall.


 

The Sandwich Shop

Where: Multiple Outlets (http://thesandwichshop.com.sg)

Walk into their stores and you will see the chiller sprawled with a wide array of pre-made salads from Chicken Tikka Salad, Crayfish Avocado Salad, Double Egg Chicken Caesar Salad and also other pre-made sandwiches. Their sandwiches are pretty good but although may still be a bit heavy on the sauce. Personally my favorite thing to get their shop is the protein pots that they have – which makes an excellent mid-day hi-protein snack. This one below is Cherry Tomato mixed with Humus and Spinach!

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I must admit I do love their mega breakfast sandwich – the deadly combination of bacon, fried egg and cheese? Only for days when I choose to embrace guilty pleasures.


Cedele

Where: Multiple outlets (http://www.cedelegroup.com/locations/)

Picking up on the hi-protein lo-carb trend, Cedele now offers customizable salads as well!  Least to say, it’s not my favorite because all their meats are cold, but still definitely worth knowing when your options run put since there are multiple outlets around town.

 

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Extracted from Cedele Official Website

 

 


Hawker Centres

And for those of you who are working in the more heartlander areas where cafes and organic places are sparse, you most likely only have hawker centres to turn to. But, it does not mean it is the end of the world. Your best bets would be:

  • Sliced Fish Soup
  • Yong Tau Foo with lots of vegetables (less on the fried stuff please)
  • Lean Pork Soup
  • Beef Soup
  • Half-Boiled Eggs
  • 5+ 1 Salads (Yes, hawker centre are getting occupied by these lifesavers! Just don’t expect fancy-tasting meats though)

Yet, these stalls usually serve processed noodles. So what you can do is to order the soups with meat and vegetables from these stalls, and get the brown rice from the vegetarian stall to get your carbs in (usually they do serve brown rice).