How To Indulge In Your Favourite Foods Without Compromising On Health?

  • 3 mins read
  • Nutrition
  • Recipes
  • Dr. Jatin Bhide

A lot of us believe that there needs to be a compromise between health and taste when it comes to food. What if we tell you that we can put an end to this constant tug of war? What if you can choose both healthy and tasty? Here we have a few food alternatives you can use in your recipes to make your diet healthier and tastier!

Brown rice could be nice

Switching over to brown rice from white rice might be a smart move, especially if you’re diabetic. Brown rice is a whole grain that contains all the nutritious components of rice. White rice is devoid of these components, making brown rice the healthier choice of the two. Brown rice is rich in magnesium and fibre, both of which can help lower blood sugar levels, which makes it a good option for people with diabetes.

Say cheeeese

We all love cheese. Be it in the form of the topping of a pizza or the delicious sauce in macaroni and cheese. Cheese is also a good source of protein and calcium. However, it is high in fats and salts, both of which can harm our health. Going for low fat and low sodium cheese could be a wise decision, especially if you can’t resist a cheesy temptation. The low-fat levels in this type of cheese also make it easier to digest than regular cheese, even for lactose-intolerant people. Even vegan or plant-based cheese is a healthy and suitable option.

Salt substitutes are worth their salt

Research suggests that a diet high in sodium causes bloating. It can also increase the risk of hypertension and cardiovascular disease. Using salt substitutes containing potassium could be a great alternative. Another interesting way of reducing salt is to avoid adding up while cooking and just sprinkle a little on top of food while eating. Avoiding sauces with high salt content is also crucial. Salt

substitutes containing potassium can balance out sodium levels in our body. This can even help in reducing bloating.

Spice it Up

You can also limit your sodium intake by spicing up your food with delicious condiments, seasonings and spices. Lemon juice, vinegar, ginger, etc can bring a lot of flavour to the food and reduce the amount of salt you would have to add to your meal. Not to mention the digestive benefits many of these spices have to offer.

Strike the right oil

Cooking without oil is extremely difficult. However, you can limit the amount of oil that you use. You can also choose a healthier oil by studying the food labels. The main aim is to choose an oil that is rich in good cholesterol and runs low on bad cholesterol. One such example is olive oil, which is also rich in many nutrients like vitamin A, E, D, and K. It is also preferable to avoid refined oils and use cold-pressed or extra virgin oils.

Sugar? No, please.

We all are big fans of a good dessert. Be it a chocolate pastry or a doughnut with sprinkles on the top. They are too hard to resist. Apart from desserts, there are various sources of added sugars in our diet such as sweetened drinks, juices, energy drinks, etc. This includes our regular tea and coffee as well.It is important to note that high sugar content in packaged foods, desserts etc is a key concern for maintaining good health. Substituting sugar with dates, fruits, honey could be good alternatives along with natural sugar substitutes like Stevia.

Getting fitter and healthier doesn’t have to be a hard choice. Our body does so much for us. It gets us through the day and through tough times. Making healthier choices doesn’t have to be a difficult compromise. Especially if we can do it with taste!

References:

1. Saleh ASM, et al. Brown Rice Versus White Rice: Nutritional Quality, Potential Health Benefits, Development of Food Products, and Preservation Technologies. Compr Rev Food Sci Food Saf. 2019 Jul;18(4):1070-1096.

2. Seki T, et al. Insoluble fiber is a major constituent responsible for lowering the post-prandial blood glucose concentration in the pre-germinated brown rice. Biol Pharm Bull. 2005 Aug;28(8):1539-41.

3. 7 cheese facts that will surprise you – Heart Matters | BHF Available at https://www.bhf.org.uk/informationsupport/heart-matters-magazine/nutrition/cheese Accessed on 24 June 2021.

4. Cheese | American Dairy North East Available at https://www.americandairy.com/health-wellness/benefits-of-dairy/cheese/ Accessed on 24 June 2021.

5. Higher salt intake can cause gastrointestinal bloating: New analysis suggests that America’s high prevalence of bloating could be reduced by lowering sodium intake Available at https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/06/190627143931.htmAccessed on 24 June 2021.

6. Potassium – Health Professional Fact Sheet Available at https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Potassium-HealthProfessional/

Accessed on 24 June 2021.

7. Are Salt Substitutes a Healthy Way to Lower Your Sodium Intake? Available at https://health.clevelandclinic.org/are-salt-substitutes-a-healthy-way-to-lower-your-sodium-intake/ Accessed on 24 June 2021.

8. How to Choose and Use Healthy Cooking Oils Available at https://health.clevelandclinic.org/how-to-choose-and-use-healthy-cooking-oils/ Accessed on 24 June 2021.

9. Manchanda SC, Passi SJ. Selecting healthy edible oil in the Indian context. Indian Heart J. 2016 Jul-Aug;68(4):447-9.

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