Low fat cooking is a great way to get you and your family making healthier food choices. However, care must be taken to make sure that the food that you are cooking is healthy and well-balanced to make the positive impact you desire.
Low fat cooking does not mean that you will spend more time grocery shopping or laboring over your meals in the kitchen. By making some changes to what you keep on hand at your house (and what items you choose at the grocery store), you can ensure that you are lowering the fat in your diet in a healthy way.
How to Make Your Diet Low Fat
Some easy and healthy ways to cut excess fat from your diet include choosing lean proteins over fatty ones and including healthy oils into your cooking practices. Additionally, by adding plenty of whole grains like pasta and rice, along with fruits and vegetables and low fat dairy products, you can create an extremely healthy and well-balanced low fat diet.
Low Fat Protein Choices
With low fat cooking, you should limit your red meat consumption to once a week or less. When you do use red meat, choose only extra lean cuts. Another tactic is to reduce the amount of meat included in a dish. For example, if a recipe calls for 1 pound, only use ¾ of a pound to reduce the meat content by 25%.
Skinless chicken breasts are your best option for low fat poultry. Search for bulk packs if you have the room to store them, as they come at a great cost savings. Whole chickens are also rather inexpensive and can easily be cooked in a slow cooker. Be sure to remove the skin before eating, and use the leftovers in sandwiches and other dishes.
Fish is also a great choice for a low fat cooking. Tilapia and sole are two low fat varieties that most grocery stores stock fresh. Additionally, salmon, mackerel and tuna are great sources of healthy fats and omega-3 essential fatty acids that your body needs.
Low Fat Beans & Grains
Beans are a cheap and extremely healthy source of protein. Buying dried beans and cooking them yourself is your best option, as canned beans tend to have a lot of sodium.
Grains are low fat by nature and should be included in your diet to make it a healthy one. Choose whole grains whenever possible and vary your diet with brown rice, bulgur, quinoa, couscous and many other grains available at your local store.
Low Fat Cooking with Oils
Cooking with healthy oils is also a concern for any low fat diet. You should not use any oils that contain trans fats and you should always limit your saturated fat consumption for the healthiest diet. Some healthy cooking choices include:
- olive oil
- soybean oil
- canola oil
- sesame oil
- nonstick cooking sprays
Use these in your recipes to increase the health of your low fat cooking.
By making some simple changes to a few ingredients that you use regularly, you can ensure that you are cooking low fat food in a healthy manner. As with any diet, variety and moderation are key elements, so be sure that you vary your food choices, and more often than not, cook whole foods for you and your family.