Is Thailand Making you Fat?
When I first moved to Thailand almost 5 years ago I was 72kg, 4 years on I weighed 82 kilograms. At least for me Thailand made me fat. I always thought that coming to Thailand I would lose weight! If you look at most Thai people they look pretty thin right? But for the past 3 months I've been looking at the situation differently and have come to the conclusion that Thailand is making people fat!
Firstly Thai people are not thin, they are what I call skinny fat. They appear skinny but really they are just small boned which helps give us the illusion that they are thin. Next time your with a Thai girl ask her to get on a scale that can measure her body fat percentage as well. I've been doing that lately and found that many girls, even ones that appear really thin have more than a 24% body fat percentage.
Eating a lot of junk food back in the states I was still less heavy that I was eating fried rice and Pad Thai. Thailand is awesome in the fact that if you're on a super budget you can still get by. Eating at food side stalls for 30 baht a pop might be light on the wallet but it's not exactly light on the stomach. Take a look at some of the nutritional stats of the food they sell on the side of the street. The facts are suprising. While most Thai food is better than fast food the stats don't really add up in reality. For 30 baht your getting crap rice and enough oil to drown a rat.
Nutritional Facts (Care of My Fitness Pal)
Big Mac Meal (Farang Food)
Calories 1,130 Sodium 1,320 mg
Total Fat 48 g Potassium 0 mg
Saturated 13 g Total Carbs 151 g
Polyunsaturated 0 g Dietary Fiber 8 g
Monounsaturated 0 g Sugars 67 g
Trans 2 g Protein 29 g
Cholesterol 75 mg
6 Piece Chicken Mcnugget Meal With Diet Coke (Farang Food)
Calories 510 Sodium 700 mg
Total Fat 29 g Potassium 0 mg
Saturated 5 g Total Carbs 0 g
Polyunsaturated 0 g Dietary Fiber 4 g
Monounsaturated 0 g Sugars 0 g
Trans 0 g Protein 16 g
Cholesterol 29 mg
Pud Thai (Thai Food)
Calories 759 Sodium 3,956 mg
Total Fat 15 g Potassium 0 mg
Saturated 2 g Total Carbs 124 g
Polyunsaturated 0 g Dietary Fiber 5 g
Monounsaturated 0 g Sugars 51 g
Trans 0 g Protein 34 g
Cholesterol 209 mg
Fried Rice (Thai Food)
Calories 405 Sodium 634 mg
Total Fat 6 g Potassium 0 mg
Saturated 1 g Total Carbs 62 g
Polyunsaturated 0 g Dietary Fiber 3 g
Monounsaturated 0 g Sugars 5 g
Trans 0 g Protein 25 g
Cholesterol 40 mg
Fat Getting Fatter
When I moved here I met this Irish guy, likable character who I'd see in Starbucks nearly every day. He enjoys the Thai street food as much as anyone. Now almost 5 years on he too looks like he's put on a lot of weight and admits to me he's now 15kg heavier. The problem he tells me is time. He's so preoccupied doing nothing that he'll just sit at coffee shops and hanging around few beers and parties over a few years it's taken it's toll.
My mate isn't the only guy, I too fell into the rut as has many other thousands of Farang. You might be him too. Fried rice and Pad Thai, noodles and other bullshit is fattening and believe it or not this is not what Thai people eat! In a Thai household you're more likely to eat fish, som tam, random vegetables and even more random meat followed by a blast of hot peppers to make sure none of the shit stays in your body. There's no Starbucks and lazy days eating cake.
Did you put on weight in Thailand?
So I wonder if the majority of people out there has experienced the same as me. Has Thailand made you fat? Please let me know by filling out the form below or leaving a comment.