Weight used to be something that weighed on her mind.
But not any more, said Taiwanese singer-songwriter Lala Hsu, who was in town on Thursday to promote her third studio album Ideal Life.
"I used to give myself immense pressure when it comes to losing weight," admitted the 27-year-old to The New Paper at Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel.
"Now, of course I still feel pressurised at times, but I try not to let it get to me...I want a long-lasting career in music. Why should I constantly feel frustrated over my figure?"
With a smile on her chubby, radiant face, she added: "Anyway, these days, I've been too busy with work to diet."
Hsu got her showbiz break in 2008 when she emerged the champion in season three of the popular reality TV singing competition One Million Star .
Known for her songwriting talent, the diminutive 1.56m-tall Taichung native took great pains to shed her pudginess before she released her debut self-titled album in May 2009.
In an old interview with Taiwanese press, she revealed that she would "have a ham and egg sandwich for breakfast, along with milk tea" and that would be her only meal for the entire day.
"I try not to eat anything after noon...If I'm really hungry, I'd take some fruit, or chew on some chewing gum," she reportedly said.
She went from her original weight of 52kg to 44kg.
Her sophomore album, Limits, released in September 2010, showed her still looking slender.
However, the effect of those drastic weight-loss measures didn't last too long.
Just last week, while promoting Ideal Life in Taipei, Hsu readily told Taiwanese reporters that she had "gained an additional 6kg".
The chirpy singer told The New Paper that she no longer stresses herself over weight, but is "trying her best to develop healthier eating habits".
"I love munching on tidbits, like bread and biscuits, which is not good for my health at all," she said.
"There are days when I'll just feed on tidbits and skip my lunch and dinner altogether..I did that once for three consecutive days and felt like a rubbish bin," she said.
Too busy to exercise
She added: "Deep down inside, I know the first step for me to shed those extra pounds would be to start having three proper meals a day. I really need to motivate myself to do that."
Hsu, who used to date fellow One Million Star III contestant Li Bo-En till they called it quits in 2010, also claimed that she exercises regularly on her elliptical trainer.
"It's very effective...Before I started my album promotional tour, I went on it almost every day," she said.
"Now that I'm in the midst of promotion, I've become lazy and neglected it."
Although she is famed for the creativity and originality in her music, one of Hsu's greatest wishes is to release an album of covers someday.
"There are so many great veteran singers whose classics I'd love to cover, like Chyi Chin, Wan Fang, Sarah Chen and Cyndi Chao," she gushed.
She would also like to cover songs by female singer-songwriter contemporaries such as Tanya Chua and Cheer Chen, though Hsu is aware of the "difficulties" in executing that.
"Tanya and Cheer have very distinctive styles of their own and it'll be hard to sing their songs with a different flavour," she said.
She added: "At home, I like dabbling with all sorts of music genres. I've written electronic dance tracks and children's nursery rhymes - it's just that I haven't officially released them yet."
This article was first published in The New Paper.