We Malaysians are obsessed with our own foods, and oh… we certainly wish they are low in calories too!
Well, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but stuffing your face with Nasi Lemak and Teh Tarik from your favourite Mamak to start the day may be satisfying but it is terrible for your waistline.
The good news is that you don’t have to go on a full-blown diet to lose weight! All you have to do is to incorporate a few of the low-calorie foods and drinks listed below into your weekly meal plan to start seeing results.
Let’s dive right in.
Low-Calorie Foods and Desserts
Amazin’ Graze Goodness Bowl
Calories: ~150kcal per serving (40g sachet), depending on which flavour you choose
Eating healthy in Malaysia is possible and convenient — thanks to the Goodness Bowl from Amazin’ Graze!
This one-step, diet-friendly oatmeal is low in calories (Around 150 kcal per serving), and it features a blend of superfoods, rolled oats, real fruits, and nuts to keep you energized throughout the day while strengthening your immune system.
Calli Ice Cream
Calories: ~90kcal per 100g, depending on which flavour you choose
It’s a myth that you have to follow a clean-eating meal plan to reduce belly fat; Calli ice cream is made of the finest, high-quality whey, and this luscious and refreshing treat is the perfect frozen dessert to fend off the tropical heat.
This low-calorie ice cream makes it easy to stick to your diet, as you can indulge without the guilt. After all, the best diet plan for weight loss should include the foods that you love to eat, otherwise it’s very easy to fall off the wagon.
Chobani Fit Greek Yogurt
Calories: 98kcal per serving (170g)
Chobani Fit Greek Yogurt is hands down the best yogurt for diet in Malaysia. It is high in protein, low in fat, and dairy-based probiotics are there to help clear your skin and boost your immunity. What’s not to like?
Calories: 138kcal per 100g
A salty, satisfying snack that’s high in nutrients but low in calories? Count us in.
Edamame is THE healthy snack that’s suitable for anyone who’s on a diet.
This superfood has a mild, nutty flavour that goes well with steamed white rice and some of my favourite healthy Malaysian food recipes. Enjoy this low-calorie food with my meal prep recipes and you are guaranteed to feel satisfied and nourished after your meal!
Fantastic Seaweed Rice Crackers
Calories: 90kcal per serving (25g)
Fantastic Seaweed Rice Crackers is the ideal snack that can be enjoyed anytime and anywhere. Delicious on its own, or with a tasty dip or topping, you know you can rely on this low-calorie cracker to fulfill your savoury cravings!
Fitbar Fruits Crispy Rice Bar with Raspberry Raisins
90kcal per serving (1 Bar, ±24g)
Fitbar Crispy Rice Bar is made of oats, quinolin, and whole wheat, and it contains less than 100 calories per bar. Stash this low-calorie snack in your office desk drawer, or pop one into your backpack to fuel up on the go.
Gourmessa Breakfast Lean Beef and Smoked Turkey Breast
Gourmessa Breafkast Lean Beef Calories: 118kcal per 100g
Smoked Turkey Breast Calories: 104kcal per 100g
This simple-to-make, low-calorie sandwich is the perfect breakfast to have al desko.
Few slices of wholemeal bread with lean deli meat is a snap to fix for rushed mornings, and you can also throw in scrambled eggs or salad for that extra dose of protein and fiber.
Want to use up those leftover tortillas? Warm up some cold cuts, and roll up a savoury treat for lunch with it. Alternatively, if you are on a diet, you can also enjoy it with salads, or simply consume it on its own.
Gullón Sugar Free Maria Biscuits
Calories: 25kcal per biscuit
4 pieces of Gullón Sugar Free Maria biscuits nets you 100 kcals. The taste is pretty good considering the fact that no sugar was used in the biscuit-making process, and the texture was decent as well.
Hwa Tai Luxury Original Crackers
Calories: 90kcal per serving (18g)
5 pieces of Hwa Tai Luxury Original Crackers are only 90 Kcal, and they are ideal for dunking into your morning cup of Milo. These lightly tasty treats are a sure way to start your day right!
Jack Link’s Beef Jerky
Calories: 86kcal per serving (30g)
Made with selected lean cuts of premium beef, Jack Link’s Beef Jerky is here for anyone who is looking for a high-protein snack without boatloads of fat.
JOWICO Milan Chicken Garlic Biscuits
Calories: 149kcal per serving (30g)
At 149 kcal for each serving (30g), these bite-sized tidbits provide just the right amount of salty crunch that will definitely satisfy your late-night cravings without the guilt. Make sure to stock up your pantry with this low-calorie biscuit, because they tend to run out quickly!
Lindt EXCELLENCE 99% Cocoa Dark Chocolate
Calories: 135kcal per 1 oz (about 3 squares or ¼ bar)
Get your chocolate fix with a bite of good old dark chocolate.
Not only is dark chocolate more satiating and lowers the desire to consume something sweet, but the high cocoa content means you get to enjoy a lot of health benefits, such as improve insulin function, better mood, and decreased appetite1.
Simply put, this low-calorie chocolate treat is a nutritious snack that’s perfect to nibble on anytime.
Peanut Butter & Co. Peanut Powder
Calories: 50kcal per serving (2 tbsp)
Peanut butter is a good source of protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, but it’s also notorious for being high in fat and calories.
Peanut Butter & Co. Peanut Powder is roasted and pressed from peanuts to remove the oil. What remains is low-calorie, high protein peanut powder that can be used for blending, baking, or simply just spreading it over a piece of bread.
Another diet version of peanut butter with a similar texture to natural peanut butter is manufactured under the brand of PB2, and it’s equally easy to mix by stirring with a tablespoon of water until smooth.
Riso Scotti Rice Cakes
Calories: 30kcal per piece
Rice cakes are perfect for anyone who is currently on a weight loss plan, because the crunchiness of the rice cake can satisfy your cravings, and it can be served as a lower-calorie alternative to biscuits, breads, or crackers.
It goes perfectly with many ingredients, sweet or savoury (Think of it as a low-calorie version of canapés).
Rice cakes are often made solely from rice, so unless it’s stated that it has included other ingredients in the making process, they are suitable for anyone who has gluten intolerance.
Sanitarium Weet-Bix Breakfast Cereal
Calories: 107kcal per serving (30g, 2 biscuits)
This whole-grain wheat cereal breakfast is perfect for anyone who’s on a low-calorie diet plan, as it provides you with slow-releasing energy throughout the day – all thanks to the 97% of wholegrain goodness.
Calories: 20kcal per 8-ounce serving (224 grams)
Also known as miracle noodles or konjac noodles, Shirataki noodles is a popular rice alternative that contains 97% water and 3% glucomannan fiber. They’re also very low in calories and contain no digestible carbs, which makes them the perfect low-carb/keto-friendly rice substitute for lunch and dinner.
But be careful though – too much of it in one go may cause digestive issues such as diarrhea, bloating and flatulence. (I know from personal experience so trust me on that!)
Tao Kae Noi Hot & Spicy Crispy Seaweed
Calories: 60kcal per pack (16g)
Roasted seaweed snacks are like the crisp and flaky multivitamin snacks that you can enjoy guilt-free. They are low in calories, and great for snacking at workplace or school since it doesn’t emit a strong odour when you open the packaging.
Low-Calorie Drinks and Soup
100 PLUS Zero Sugar
Calories: 0kcal per bottle
Whether you’re on the go or at the gym, 100 PLUS Zero Sugar is the perfect way to stay hydrated without the calories!
137 Degrees Almond Milk Unsweetened 1L
Calories: 33kcal per 100ml
Almond milk serves as a good alternative to cow’s milk because of its rich texture and flavour. Plus, it also serves as an excellent source of protein, fibre, vitamin E and manganese2.
Calories: 0kcal per can
Lemon-lime lovers, this one’s for you! 7Up Free is a sugar-free drink without colouring and calorie, and the combination of zesty lemon flavour with the mildly sour tropical lime makes it the quintessential anytime drink.
Aik Cheong Original Coffee
Calories: 40kcal per serving (10g sachet)
Mix-and-match any foods in this list with a cup of black coffee to make a hearty, low-calorie breakfast.
Calories: 0kcal per can
Coke Zero is made to resemble the original Coca-Cola taste, minus the extra sugar and additional calories. This zero-calorie beverage is the perfect drink to keep you cool under the blistering hot weather.
Essenso Microground Coffee
Calories: 7kcal per serving (1 sachet)
Essenso Microground Coffee is a low-calorie coffee (7 kcal in 1 sachet) that’s perfect for anyone who struggles to make it out of their house without few cups of coffee in the morning.
Farm Fresh This is Lactose-Free Fresh Milk
Calories: 65kcal per 100ml
A high proportion of Asians are lactose-intolerant3, so it’s important to take that into account when choosing milk product as your protein source.
Lactose-free fresh milk from Farm Fresh tastes refreshing, and it contains just the right amount of sweetness for your regular consumption. No preservatives are used during the bottling process, and each bottle is chock-full of nutrients and vitamins but minus the discomfort.
This rich and creamy milk is easily the best milk for diet, hands-down. If you spot it on shelves at your local supermarket, snap it up. You won’t regret it.
F&N Club Soda Water/Schweppes Soda Water
Calories: 0kcal per can
Kick those sugar-laden beverages aside and opt for these diet sodas instead! Each sip of soda water will provide you with an absolute fizzy feeling in your mouth.
Heal Classic Coffee Protein Shake
Calories: 133kcal per serving (39g)
It’s easy to make a creamy and frothy cup of coffee without the hassles of long brews and an expensive coffee machine with Heal Classic Coffee Protein Shake. Not long does this low-calorie diet coffee helps brighten up your morning, but it also provides 20g of protein per serving – talk about killing two birds with one stone!
Marukome Sokuseki Ikkyusan Instant Miso Soup
Calories: <100kcal per pack
Simple, delicious, low-carb, and low-fat – there’s no better comfort food than this!
This super healthy and easy-to-make Japanese soup is one of the healthiest things to consume to lose weight.
Miso is rich in minerals, and it’s also a good source of copper, manganese, vitamin K, protein, and zinc4. All you need is hot water and a bowl to warm you up during rainy days.
OSK 100% Japanese Green Tea Leaves 50 Tea Bags
Calories: 2–3kcal per 8-ounce (240-ml) cup
Green tea is a popular beverage that rightfully deserves a spot on this list. After all, its health benefits have been well documented across various studies5,6,7,8.
This healthy drink can be enjoyed hot or cold, and most importantly, the caffeine and catechins content have been proven to increase your metabolic rate9 and fat burning rate10, making it the ideal beverage to be included in a healthy diet and lifestyle.
Calories: 0kcal per bottle
Pepsi Black is Pepsi’s answer to Coke Zero, and they can be easily spotted on supermarket shelves in boldly designed bottles. Anyone who’s looking for that intense taste experience but with zero calories should definitely consider adding this to their shopping list.
Vida Zero Sparkling Drink
Calories: 0kcal per can
Formulated using advanced Japanese R&D technology, Vida Zero Sparkling Drink is a light and refreshing beverage that comes in 4 different flavours: the mildly-salty Salty Lychee, punchy-zesty Vida Lemon, citrus-fresh Minty Lime, and lemony-limey Original Citrus.
Best of all, this drink is zero in calories, sugar, colouring, fat, and cholesterol!
Now It’s Time to Hear From You
I hope you got a ton of value from this list of low calorie foods and drinks that you can find in Malaysia.
And now I’d like to hear from you:
What are some of your favourite foods/drinks which you think should be included in this blog post?
Please do not hesitate to let fellow readers know by leaving a quick comment down below!
1. Lone Sørensen and Arne Astrup (2011), Eating dark and milk chocolate: A randomized crossover study of effects on appetite and energy intake https://www.researchgate.net/publication/232778934_Eating_dark_and_milk_chocolate_A_randomized_crossover_study_of_effects_on_appetite_and_energy_intake
2. Sai Kranthi Vanga and Vijaya Raghavan (2017), How well do plant based alternatives fare nutritionally compared to cow’s milk? Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5756203/
3. Lactose intolerance from Genetics Home Reference. Retrieved from https://medlineplus.gov/genetics/condition/lactose-intolerance/#frequency
4. The health benefits of miso. Retrieved from https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/health-benefits-miso
5. Can-Lan Sun, Jian-Min Yuan, Woon-Puay Koh, Mimi C Yu (2006), Green tea, black tea and breast cancer risk: a meta-analysis of epidemiological studies. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16311246/
6. Hirota Fujiki, Masami Suganuma, Kazue Imai, Kei Nakachi (2002), Green tea: cancer preventive beverage and/or drug. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0304383502003798
7. Hiroyasu Iso, Chigusa Date, Kenji Wakai, Mitsuru Fukui, Akiko Tamakoshi, JACC Study Group (2006), The relationship between green tea and total caffeine intake and risk for self-reported type 2 diabetes among Japanese adults. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16618952/
8. Anirban Chatterjee, Mini Saluja, Gunjan Agarwal, and Mahtab Alam (2012), Green tea: A boon for periodontal and general health. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3459493/
9. Kristel Diepvens, Klaas R Westerterp, Margriet S Westerterp-Plantenga (2005), Obesity and thermogenesis related to the consumption of caffeine, ephedrine, capsaicin, and green tea. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16840650/
10. K J Acheson, B Zahorska-Markiewicz, P Pittet, K Anantharaman, E Jéquier (1980), Caffeine and coffee: their influence on metabolic rate and substrate utilization in normal weight and obese individuals. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/7369170/
Awww man how much I miss A&W Diet Root Beer, used to buy them at Cold Storage but nowadays they’re nowhere to be found…
Very useful list for my very own 1200 calorie Malaysian diet
Same here, except that I’m on a 1500 calorie diet!
Looks like I can make use of a few ingredients in this list to bake my ‘diet cake’, thank you Edward for taking the time to come up with this blog post!
I like the variety of drinks, and I’m a fan of this yellow-coloured diet tonic water under the brand ‘Schweppes’, which can be found across major supermarkets in Malaysia. Kombucha is another favourite fermented and sweetened tea beverage of mine.