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Cooking and kitchen tips for better health
Generally, we focus a lot only on the food we eat in order to maintain good health. But, it is important to focus even on the techniques that are used in the kitchen to prepare the food. Some minor adjustments here and there in our routine cooking techniques can go a long way in making us lead a very healthy life. I have tried to discuss a few tips in this article.
"Health is Wealth" is one of the most widely used phrase and most believed as well. There is hardly any one who won't agree with it. People often focus on a healthy diet and the key to a healthy diet is healthy cooking habits. The secret to leading a healthy life lies in healthy cooking and healthy eating. Some of the basic tips for healthy cooking are being discussed below.
Basic healthy cooking tips
- Always wash your hands with anti-bacterial soap before cooking any food.
- Always wash the cutting tools like knife and cooking vessels to make sure they are neat and clean. Even wipe the cutting table and stove (gas) with a cloth before use.
- During cooking try to use minimal amount of water.
- Usage of food colors(or essence) must be strictly avoided to prevent serious health issues.
- Try to make minimal use of soda or baking powder as it causes irritation to the intestine.
- While cooking green vegetables make sure the lids are closed so as to preserve their green color.
- Avoid pesticide-sprayed foods or wash them thoroughly (at least 3-4 times) before use.
- Always cut as big pieces because they carry more vita.
- Avoid peeling off the skin of some vegetables as they contain more nutrients.
Low fat cooking tips
- Use olive oil for cooking as much as possible to restrict cholesterol intake.
- For recipes based on cream usage,use low fat yoghurt or skimmed milk as thickener.
- Prefer boiling or baking as against frying.
- For sandwiches, avoid mayonnaise and use low fat spreads like sauce/ketchup or home-made green chutneys.
- Make use of low fat milk instead of whole milk.
- While cooking make Use of non stick cookware so that you don't get to use excess oil.
- For non-vegetarian cooking, try to make use of fat free chicken broth.
- For non-vegetarian cooking, prepare fish, eggs and chicken in less quantity of water. This method of cooking is known as poaching.
- Make a habit of low fat cooking methods like baking, steaming, poaching, grilling, broiling or sautéing.
- When preparing oily food, attempt to remove the excess oil by pressing the food stuff using paper or kitchen napkins.
Nutrient retaining cooking tips
- Please do not strain starch water from rice during cooking.
- Try not to cook at high temperatures as much as possible, since this may destroy some of the vitamins (by oxidation).
- Instead of boiling vegetables, Steam or microwave them.
- Do not use copper vessels/tins as copper tends to destroy vitamin content.
- Avoid washing vegetables after they are chopped as it may take away some valuable nutrients.
- Prefer Steaming over boiling.
- Prefer usage of boiled vegetable water for soups and other gravies.
- Rinse vegetables in quick time rather than soaking them for long time.
- Do not peel off all vegetables before boiling them.Boil potatoes,beetroots and similar vegetables along with their skin intact.
- Boil vegetables as whole and then cut them to enable retainment of several nutrients.
- For storage, keep vegetables in a refrigerator to retain their vitamin content.
- If vegetables are to be soaked before cooking, add some salt when you soak them.
- Fruits should not be soaked in water for long. In fact, it would be good if you can completely avoid soaking fruits in water (exceptions: Mangoes).
Low salt/sodium cooking tips
- Restrict usage of margarine, butter, etc. since they contain lots of salt.
- Use fresh or frozen vegetables and avoid canned vegetables as they contain salt.
- Always make use of salt-free cheese.
- Salt is a difficult ingredient to substitute while cooking. Try to use lemon juice, vinegar, spices,etc. to reduce requirement for salt.
- Use sauces only when required, because they contain lot of salt.
- Restrict usage/consumption of pickles as they too contain lots of salt. Prepare home-made pickles making use of less salt.
Read related articles: Cooking tips Nutrition Fat Food Health
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|Author: Meghu 09 Dec 2011||Member Level: Bronze Points : 2|
|A very useful article.I would like to add here about the importance of washing vegetables prior to cooking. Getting organic vegetables from the market is the most ideal way to ensure good health. Presence of pesticides in vegetables has to be blamed for the common lifestyle diseases in the present world.|
Few tips for washing vegetables before cooking
1) Soak vegetables/fruits in water by adding little bit of salt, vinegar and turmeric for at least 20 minutes.
2) Wash the vegetables/fruits in running water to wash off the chemicals.