I Achieved My Dream Weight, and I Still Got to Eat My Favorite Food

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A common misconception about weight loss is that you must drastically reduce your food intake. Some people give up their favorite food just to lose weight, while others starve themselves completely.

My younger self chose the second option. Both options, actually.

I have always struggled with my weight, and for some weird reason, my self-worth was tied to the way I looked. My happiness depended on a man’s attention, which is, in turn, tied to how I looked. Never mind that I had a steady job, enjoyed the company of friends, lived on my own, and had enough time and resources to pursue my passions. 

It’s so dangerous when your self-worth is tied to something physical because what if it doesn’t live up to your ideal? In my mind, I was never good enough because of my weight.


I’ve tried all the methods to lose weight. My most extreme was in college when I ate only one pack of crackers a day. I once passed out because I had the unbelievable idea of drinking one glass of water daily to avoid bloating. I achieved my “dream weight,” but I looked sickly. Unsurprisingly, I gained the weight back, until I reached my heaviest in 2020 at 220 lbs.


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I decided to make a change that year with the COVID-19 lockdowns. This time, I wanted to take the healthier route. I joined an online fitness class and signed up for a diet subscription plan. I was consistent with my diet and fitness until I reached 160 lbs.

During this period, I learned two things. The first: I felt the physical changes in my body, but nothing changed mentally. I still felt… the same. There was still that voice telling me that I was worthless, even with a slimmer body. It was then that I realized that I wasn’t unlovable because I was fat. I was unlovable because I told myself I was. The same day, I told myself I was worthy of love, both from myself and others, regardless of my weight.

My second lesson is that diet plays a huge role in your fitness journey. There is a saying that abs are made in the kitchen. No matter how hard you work out, you won’t see any results if you don’t change your eating habits. There is, however, a difference between starving yourself and a caloric deficit. A deficit happens when you consume fewer calories than you burn. The key difference is that you still eat, just a little less.

Surprisingly, I did not give anything up. I made sure to stick to my daily calorie limit and fill them with healthy, protein-rich food. Sometimes, I would indulge in my favorite treats, like cake or chips.

It’s easy to go on the same journey as there are now plenty of options for healthy eating without the feeling of deprivation. A popular practice is going on a plant-based diet, avoiding meat and instead consuming vegetables, fruits, and other plant-derived food.

Going plant-based has many health benefits: you can shed weight, lower your risk of diabetes and heart disease, reduce your blood sugar levels, and so much more.

You also don’t have to worry about eating becoming boring. There are so many recipes out there that prove that plant-based is tasty. You can also try alternative meat products like unMEAT.

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Photo / unMEAT

unMEAT is plant-based, is made from non-GMO protein, and is designed to look, cook, feel, and taste like meat. I tried the Burger Patties as part of my maintenance diet and enjoyed how it was just as juicy as a meat-based version. It doesn’t feel like I gave up anything.

I also got to hit my daily protein requirements. unMEAT products are a source of fiber and protein with no preservatives added. They’re also egg-free and cholesterol-free!

The products are already seasoned, so I simply thawed the Burger Patties and cooked them. There are so many options available in the frozen section, like sausages, nuggets, giniling, and tapa. They also recently launched their new dim sum range, which includes the unMEAT Siomai, Siopao, and Gyoza. Another new collection is the canned range, which has the unMEAT Corned Beef and unMEAT Luncheon Meat. The unMEAT Luncheon Meat has 50% less sodium compared to other meat brands.

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Photo / unMEAT

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Photo / unMEAT

unMEAT is available in leading supermarkets and online on Shopee and Lazada.

Remember: you deserve to eat deliciously, even when you’re trying to be healthy. Eating should be a pleasurable experience, and you should enjoy your food. More importantly, you are worthy of love, whatever your weight, and we applaud you for caring for your health.

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