Food is the mainstay of health, and the right dietary choices can make all the difference. Beyond picking the right foods for your everyday diet and special occasions, you need to be conscious about your cooking techniques as well. Using the right techniques goes beyond only preserving the nutrition of foods and preventing the use of unhealthy ingredients. There is a lot more you can do to smarten up your recipes. Let us share some excellent options you can rely on for cooking healthy and living better.
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Start by shopping healthy
Even before you start thinking about the technique, having the right raw material is important. Everything begins at the superstore shelves, where you have to be selective about the stuff you pick. Opt for fresh fruits and vegetables and wholegrain variants in bread and cereals. Pick low-fat versions and lean meat cuts. Curb the habit of picking fast foods, chips, processed meats, pies, and pastries as these are loaded with unhealthy fats.
Opt for the right techniques
Perhaps the most significant way to smarten up cooking is by switching to the right techniques. Steer clear of deep-frying as it gets tons of unhealthy oils in your body. Settle for low-oil techniques like baking, roasting, sautéing, and shallow-frying. Steaming vegetables is a better alternative to boiling them as it retains the nutrients. Stir-frying is also a good technique as it adds crunch to vegetables while preparing them quickly.
Use the right cookware
When it comes to preparing your dishes a healthy way, the choice of cookware is vital. Consider cooking with stainless steel as it distributes heat evenly over its surface, so you can prepare the dishes without worrying about overcooking or leaving them raw in parts. These utensils are ideal for flat baking and griddle cooking. Further, the material is durable and lasts for years, provided that you invest in good quality.
Cut down the fat
While you need to be extra conscious about the techniques and utensils, cutting down the quantity of fat from your dishes is equally important. If the recipe requires oil, try using cooking sprays or a pastry brush to minimize the quantity. Opting for lemon juice, wine, stock, or vinegar instead of oil as a cooking medium is a good idea. Microwaving and grilling are some other ways to reduce oil usage.
Limit the use of salt and sugar
Another useful piece of advice is to limit the use of salt and sugar as they are the worst healthy culprits. Steer clear of processed meats and snacks as they have a high salt content. For savory dishes, you can use flavorful herbs, vinegar, and lemon to add the zing and cut down the salt usage. If you have a sweet tooth, consider using healthy alternatives like honey instead of refined sugar.
Cooking healthy is easier than you think, and there isn’t a need to sacrifice on taste as well. All you need to do is make the right choices, right from ingredients to techniques and cookware, and just be a little more creative with the recipes.