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HealthWatch: Healthy Cooking Habits

3 Easy Tips for Healthier Cooking

When it comes to healthy cooking, a lot of focus goes into choosing good ingredients loaded with the nutrients you and your family need. But the truth is, the way you prepare food can be just as important as what you buy. Certain cooking techniques will help maximize your food’s nutrition, while others will minimize the intake of less healthy elements like added sodium and unhealthy fats. Here are three simple ways you can easily adjust your cooking for a healthier lifestyle!

1.    Treat Your Vegetables Right
Boiling and overcooking certain vegetables robs them of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. By steaming them instead, you will preserve more nutrients in vegetables than boiling, stir-frying, or even blanching. For canned vegetables, you can lower their sodium content by up to 40% by rinsing them in water. However, rinsing can also remove some of the Vitamin C from some canned vegetables. Using no- or low-sodium canned foods is an even easier way to keep your sodium intake in check.

2.    Taste Your Food Before You Salt It
Just one teaspoon of table salt has about 2,300 milligrams of sodium, which is the maximum amount you should have in a day. For people who are 51 or older, have high blood pressure or diabetes, the recommended maximum intake is 1,500 milligrams a day. To cut down on sodium, remove the salt shaker from your table and take heart—some research has shown that your taste buds will adjust over time.

3.    Fry in the Oven, Not the Pan
Research shows that vegetables such as potatoes suck up more fat during frying than meat does. Try switching to “oven frying,” which uses little oil but still delivers a “fried” crunch.
If you’re like 70% of Americans and plan on losing weight or being healthier in the new year, we hope these tips can aid you in following through with your New Year’s resolutions!
 

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