I lost about 10kg and to be honest, looking back, some things were hard, others not.
Let me start with the easiest things first.
Number 1: Stop drinking sweet drinks
I like my food and my desserts. But to stop drinking my calories wasn't too hard.
(Note: I don't drink alcohol much, except a drink whenever I am at social events, which thankfully isn't that often.. I continued these since they are very occasional. Usually, I opt for a wine.)
What I did was cut out sweet drinks:
1. No soft drinks, not even diet or "zero" versions
Soft drinks belong to the "must stop" items.
Coke has 35g per 330ml can. 1 teaspoon of sugar equals 4g. So that means a 330ml can of coke has almost 9 teaspoon of sugar, and that spikes your insulin, which makes you fat.
Hence, coke (and all other soft drinks) is a big no. Run away as far as you can.
Diet sodas are a no for me too.
These contain artificial sweeteners but there is research that artificial sweeteners are not linked to weight loss and may be associated with obesity. Some still generate an insulin response, which make them no different from sugared ones.
So no "cheating" with diet sodas.
2. No fruit juices and other sweet "healthy" drinks.
Fruit juices, to my horror, are sometimes worse than soft drinks.
As an example -
Marigold 100% Pure Apple Juice with no sugar added has 10.4g sugar per 100ml. That's almost 35g per 330ml - which makes it almost the same as Coke!
Some may say it's all natural and with no added sugar. But it's still sugar, with minimal fiber (a paltry 0.8g per 100ml).
So, no fruit juices or yogurt drinks (these have really high sugar content) and no smoothies.
Even freshly squeezed ones are a no - they have natural fructose in them and your body process them in the same way as sugar (which is part glucose and part fructose). When you blend or squeeze the juice, you take out most of the fiber too.. which makes the juice bad.
So the fruit is okay (because of the fibre which slows down the insulin response process) but juice is not.
Sweetened "healthy" drinks are equally bad.
As an example -
Yeo's Chrysanthemum tea - what our parents will "allow" us to drink when we were young when they deny us of soft drinks - has 23.1g of sugar per 330ml (I change everything to 330ml to compare with coke. That's still a whooping almost 6 teaspoon full of sugar.
The "light" version is just slightly better at 19g per 330. If you choose this, you'd get "only" under 5 teaspoon instead of 6 for the regular version. (Is it just me or is there almost no difference?)
So all sweetened "healthy" drinks are out. They are not healthy at all with all that sugar in them.
3. No sugar in my coffee or tea
I used to drink my coffee or tea with a little sugar. I cut that out. It didn't taste so nice in the beginning. But I continued drinking it with milk and now, I think that even with milk, it's pretty sweet.
So yes, I didn't cut my lattes, kopi-c and teh-c (local coffee/ tea). I just cut off the sugar in these drinks.
And if I'm out and really want to order a cold drink, I'd order sparkling water or unsweetened tea. There are only 2 unsweetened tea choices mostly in Singapore - Oolong Tea from Pokka or Green Tea from Ayataka.
Honestly - the "less sweet" drinks are just another unhealthy version of the same drinks. They are not healthy at all!