CNY Snacks: Harmful or Nutritious?

Watch out for how much you eat!


Happy year of the rooster everyone! Chinese New Year is no stranger and we are going to get right down to business. FOOD.

Now every year almost every post is going to be about food reviews and counting calories, this year we are going to focus on the nutrients in your food. No matter how “bad” some foods are, they are only so because of the prevalence of overeating. Food is fuel to our bodies. Just as ESSO has Supreme+, Shell has V-power Nitro+ and Caltex has Techron, we have “Superfoods” that can power our bodies!


1. Pineapple tarts

nutritionlabel     80cal

Main ingredients are Pineapple filling, butter and flour. Focusing on the pineapple, it contains a relatively high amount of vitamin C, as well as manganese, potassium, calcium and iron. Pineapple itself is rich in fibre and can help relieve and prevent constipation. Bromelian compounds found in pineapples are a good enzyme, commonly used in the food industries, pharmacology and medicine. Some research has been found to effectively help treat sore throat, pains and respiratory conditions.


Healthier alternative: Healthy Homemade Pineapple Tarts


*Disclaimer: the pineapple jam contains less vitamin C and bromelain compounds compared to fresh pineapple.


2. Bak kwa

Bak_Kwa_Label     230cal

Did you know 1 slice of Bak Kwa has more carbohydrates than proteins? That’s because of all the sugars that are added during cooking. 1 slice provides roughly 230 calories with 15g of protein and 8g of fat


Main ingredient: Minced meat! Meat is an excellent source of protein which is essential for building muscle and our body structure. Protein is the building block of the bodty and it is recommended that we should consume 0.8-1.0g protein per kg of body weight. That means if you are 60kg, you should consume roughly 48-60g of protein daily. Athletes and youth tend to require higher protein intakes.


3. Melon seeds

nutritionlabel     510cal

Traditionally dyed red during the festive season, these seeds have multiple meanings as the red signifies happiness and the seeds represent hope and potential. Melon seeds are probably one of the healthiest CNY snacks around. 100g of these seeds have 7g of protein and are high in vitamins and minerals, they can have a high sodium content so watch out as you munch them!


A good thing though, opening these seeds can be more tedious and helps you pace your snacking well, making you less likely to overeat.


4. Mandarin oranges

medium_mandarinorange     45cal

This tops the list for healthiest CNY snack!! Mandarin oranges are pack
ed with vitamin C and tons of fibre as well as antioxidants which are protective against cancer and anti inflammation. Consuming citrus fruits, and other fruits in general, have been strongly associated with a decrease in incidence for heart disease. The peeling of the fruits also help in regulating the snacking rates when visiting door to door! Besides their nutritional value, mandarin oranges are said to be tokens of happiness and abundance, a symbol of wealth and prosperity.

Citrus Fruit Citrus Fruit Clementines Tangerines

A word of caution: All chinese new year snacks tend to be very calorie dense and high in fat. Bearing in mind their high caloric content, they should be eaten in moderation. Mindless snacking can add up to an extra 1000-2000 calories per day, that’s like another 2 full meals :O


Food is your friend, not your enemy.



Sources from
*tnp. CNY calorie count: 3 slices of bak kwa = 7 bowls of rice
*herworldplus. Diet Guide for 13 Popular Chinese New Year Snacks


*The information on foodcaption is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. If you need any medical advice, please consult the medical professionals.

- Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs. These values are recommended by a government body. They are not foodcaption recommendations.
- Based on a 35 year old female who is 170cm and weighs 65kg.

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