Eating healthy does not mean lacking my favorite foods, eating only salads or milk and water-boiled foods. Cooking healthier is easier than we think. In fact, there are some very easy tips we could use in our cooking habits, that help us cook and eat healthier and tastier.
Below, we give you some tips that will be proved very important for your diet.
* Without unnecessary fat … not without flavor
Fat in food is not necessarily bad. In fact it is essential for our body. The secret is to receive fat from the proper sources.The fat we have in our diet is preferable to come from untreated natural fat sources such as nuts, fatty fish, soybeans, olives, among other things because these foods are rich in other nutrients as well.
A little olive oil is enough in most recipes without overdoing it. Besides, such a practice will help your body to better absorb the so-called fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K) and some antioxidant phytochemicals.
The best and healthiest way to cook our food is to add extra virgin olive oil at the end of cooking. In this way the valuable components of olive oil are not altered and, on the other hand the taste of the food will be lighter, without loosing its flavor.
* Use a spray device or a cooking brush to control the amount of fat you add to the pan, skillet or saucepan.
* Prefer to cook foods using their natural “juice” and / or adding water, wine, natural lemon juice, fruit juice and vinegar instead of an oil.
* Fresh vegetables lose a significant amount of their nutrients when cooked a lot at high temperatures. The secret is not to over-cook them and maintain them “alive” in order to maintain color, aroma and flavor.
* When you need to saute vegetables or want to get the best color insert in a hot pan and then sprinkle them with a little oil to have the oil burned first. This process will reduce the amount of oil which will be absorb by the vegetables. An alternative for the vegetables to get color is to put them under the grill for 1 or 2 minutes.
* Add extra vegetables in recipes. In any recipe you can add a few extra vegetables. Whatever you make, you can combine it with some salad or garnish vegetables. Place peppers on the pizza and mushrooms in pasta sauce, carrots in the soup and lettuce and tomato in the sandwich. It is simple and effective
If you are thinking how to give more flavor to grilled meat, a very good idea both in taste and in terms of health is rosemary. The Rosemary is an antioxidant and its addition to your meat protects you from carcinogenic substances formed on the encrusted (charred) meats. If you want to spice your grilled meat with lemon, add it when they are cooked. This way the valuable vitamin C will not be destroyed by cooking.
* When you want to serve meat, fish or pasta with sauce prefer a sauce of fresh tomatoes and herbs, pesto and wine or vinegar, instead of a creamy white sauce (eg carbonara).
* Choose whole grains. The whole grains (brown bread, rice, pasta), as well as legumes, vegetables and fruits with skins contain fiber, which help in proper bowel function and also cause easy satiety, which means that you will feel fuller eating less.
* Use herbs and spices. One of the secret weapons of cooking are spices and herbs, which can transform even the simplest food to a taste Bomb! Dried herbs and spices can be useful in order to reduce the quantities of sugar and salt.
* The canned tomatoes are a great way to add flavor to your food. If you cook pulses or cereals such as brown rice, the quinoa, millet, lentils, etc., use tomatoes as part of the water they need to boil. The food will absorb the juices of tomatoes and spice your food.
* For veloute soups, skip the cream and fat cheeses and replace it with pureed vegetables or condensed milk.
* Pan. It is advisable to avoid frying with oil. Instead, you can cook in the pan using water! However, if you use oil, use a small amount and make sure the pan is covered, and thus the oxidation of fats is lower.
* Oven. Particular attention to the choice of the food (eg meat) to cook, as the fat remains on the oven dish. A good solution is to remove the visible fat from food before cooking or choose foods with less fat, such as turkey and rabbit.
* Hull. Cooking the hull is preferable as the hull food is not “dry” so you don’t need much oil to cook.
* Grill. Grilling allows fats to “flee” from the meat, thus considered to be one of the healthier ways to cook. However, when you cook on the grill, some ingredients from burning coal are spreaded on food and for this reason it would be good to avoid.
* Pot. To cook healthier in the pot, use a small amount of oil. Indeed, a good tip is to use pots with thick bottom, and maintain the temperature, thus having even smaller amount of oil when cooking.
* Steamer. Steaming is a healthy option as it combines high nutritional value with low calories. The water does not penetrate the food, so they do not affect the nutritional value.
Using appropriate cooking methods, replacing fat with healthy substitutes and adding more vegetables, fruits and whole grains in your recipes, it is certain that you will create more nutritious and balanced for your health meals, rich in nutrients.