Secrets To Cooking Healthier!
- 8 Months ago
Preparing healthy meals is not difficult when you know the basics of nutritious cooking. Nutritious cooking begins with good planning, choosing healthy ingredients and knowing healthy cooking techniques.
Here are few suggestions to make your cooking healthier
PLANNING - Having a plan helps set you figure out what you're going to make and sets you up for success.
- Plan your meals ahead for the week which can save time and reduce any wastage.
- Start stocking up the kitchen with healthy ingredients like whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, eggs, low fat milk, low fat cheese, paneer, herbs etc.
CHOOSING HEALTHY INGREDIENTS
- Choose unrefined foods like brown rice, wheat, ragi, bajra, etc. to obtain maximum fiber, B vitamin, zinc, manganese and other micro minerals that are lost in refining.
- Choose low-fat dairy products like low fat milk, curd, low fat paneer, etc. They are good source of calcium. Replacing whole-milk dairy products with low-fat or nonfat is an easy way to cut saturated fat in your diet.
- Use healthy fats like olive oil, canola oil, rice bran oil, sunflower oil etc. over saturated fats and trans fats. Whatever be the type of fat, use them in moderation to make cooking healthy and to reduce extra calorie intake.
- Limit the use of spreads that are high in saturated fats and trans fats. Replace them with hummus, home- made peanut butter, avocado puree and low fat cheese spreads to make the dish delicious.
- Go for skinless chicken, fish and lean meat as they are high in good quality protein and essential fatty acids.
- Go for flavor enhancers like fresh or dried herbs, citrus fruits and spices. They add good aroma and are excellent substitutes for oils and salt.
- Use sweeteners sensibly. Sugars of any kind, whether corn syrup, white sugar, brown sugar or honey add significant calories without any nutritive value.
- Keep an eye on sodium levels. Whether you have high blood pressure or not, it’s wise to watch your sodium intake.
- If you are using packaged foods, always add plenty of fresh fruits or vegetables to it to ensure you are not losing vitamins, minerals and fiber.
KNOWING HEALTHY COOKING TECHNIQUES
- Wash vegetables before cutting or peeling. This will preserve the water soluble vitamins present in the food.
- Choose healthy cooking techniques like broiling, roasting, baking, steaming and grilling instead of deep frying.
- Use minimal oil in cooking. Try cooking sprays or apply oil with a pastry brush, wherever possible.
- Cook in liquids such as stock, lemon juice, fruit juice, vinegar or water instead of oil. Do not discard excess water in which vegetables are cooked. Use it for gravies, rasam or soups.
- Roast / fry the ground masala on low flame to retain the color and taste better.
- Use healthy cooking tools like cast iron cookware, copper cookware, stainless steel cookware and nonstick & hard anodized cookware because they have their own merits.
- Food holding is important to minimize the food spoilage. For this cover food properly, prepare food in small amounts and keep food at optimum temperature.
Make conscious food decisions rather than grabbing for what is most convenient. Make sure it is something delicious and savor it. When you enjoy what you eat, you feel satisfied. Happy cooking!