Healthy Food Choices
When choosing and selecting foods for daily menus, check for food labels and opt for low fat food alternatives but without compromising on vital nutrients and mineral. A low cholesterol diet or a low calorie diet is essential for good health. Although carbohydrates are necessary for the body’s functioning, some people can opt for a low carbohydrate diet with the advice of a medical dietician. It is important to read food labels to understand the amount of fat in specific food products that you decide to buy. Investing in low-fat food or healthy fat free lifestyle calls for some change in food choices that is required to be made in the kitchens.
Simply put, interchanging high-fat foods in place of non fat or low-fat food can help to make that transition smoother and healthier. Below are some low fat food alternatives:
Dairy low fat foods items:
- Evaporated skimmed or fat reduced milk
- fat-free frozen yoghurt or plain low fat yoghurt
- iced sorbets
- fat-free cheese or low calorie processed cheese
- low fat or fat-free cottage cheese
- fat-free or low fat dry milk powder
Whole grain low fat food meals:
- brown rice or wholegrain wheat
- wholegrain pasta with vegetables or red sauce
- cooked oat meal
- wholegrain bran flakes
- fat-free granola
Low fat food items among meats and poultry:
- fresh, frozen, canned in brine seafood items such as tuna, salmon and sardines
- extra lean cut beef
- fat-free or low fat bacon or ham
- white meat without skin such as chicken or Turkey
- Trimmed or lean pork tenderloin
- egg whites
- extra lean or low fat or fat-free cold cuts
Low fat or fat-free baked goods:
- whole grain or brown breads
- reduced fat or fat-free scones, muffins or bagels
- low sodium crackers
- fat-free cookies
- sugar-free or fat-free pudding and jelly based desserts
Low fat oils and salad dressings:
- Salsa dips
- cucumbers and lettuce
- apple sauce or prune puree
- non fat mayonnaise or mustard
- fat-free lemon juice salad dressing, wine vinegar or herb flavored salad dressings
- cooking spray oils for stir fry or sauté
The above mentioned food items is not an exhaustive list, but gives a basic idea on the kinds of foods to be stocked for a tasty, yet nutritious lifestyle on hand. Also remember to include healthy nuts, seeds, and fatty fish in your diet. Such foods are good for health in moderation, as the fat from these origins are healthy for the heart. Also incorporate plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables of varying color in your diet.
Substitute meat for chicken and turkey
- Beef should be limited to only once a week. Hot dogs, sausages and processed-lunch meats; brain, kidney, liver and other organ meats should be avoided.
- If you eat meat, choose lean meat with low fat content.
- Before cooking trim all the fats from meat.
- Good substitutes for meat are low-fat de-skinned chicken and turkey. Dark meat contains more fat than white meat. Organic chickens (which do not contain chemicals and hormones) are good but avoid chicken nuggets or fried chicken.
- Herring, salmon, sardine and tuna are excellent sources of protein and omega-3-fatty acids. Shellfish is to be avoided. For flavoring add lemon, spices. And bake, broil, grill or poach fish. Intake of fishes like shark and swordfish should be limited as they may contain higher levels of mercury.
- Dairy Products – Choose non-fat milk, low fat cheeses like goat cheese and cottage cheese and low-fat Swiss cheeses. 2-3 whole eggs in a week are not harmful. Egg whites are excellent sources of protein. An egg white omelet with plenty of fresh veggies cooked in little olive oil is good. Low or non-fat yogurt, cream-cheese with fruit added is good
- Fruits and vegetables are excellent foods and fights against degenerative diseases.