Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Become a Healthier You; 10 tips to cut down on fat intake

Diets high in calories, that is high in fat or high in sugar are among the contributing factors of overweight and obesity, which are risk factors for Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, some cancers and cardiovascular diseases like heart disease and stroke.

To reduce the risk of overweight and obesity and its associated diseases, we need to cut down on fat intake. Below are tips to help cut down on fat intake.

1. During shopping, read food labels to buy less or no food high in saturated fat. A food product that contains 5g of saturated fat or more  per 100g of the product is high in fat.

2. Foods high in fat should be used sparingly and occasionally. These foods include;  butter, margarine, other spreading fats and low-fat spreads, cooking oils, oil-based salad dressings, mayonnaise, cream, chocolate, crisps, biscuits, pastries, cakes,puddings, ice cream, rich sauces, and gravies.

3. Opt for fat spreads rich in monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fats and cooking oils high in monounsaturates, such as soya, rapeseed or olive oils.

4. Always measure oil with a spoon instead of pouring it directly into your cooking utensil to prevent you from adding more oil than necessary.

5. Before cooking, trim visible fat from meat as it will prevent you from having too much fat in your diet. Additionally, buy lean meat and chicken from the butcher's.

6. Add fish such as salmon, sardines and mackerel to your diet. At least one portion of these types of fish per week as they are rich in essential fatty acid, Omega-3.

7. Use cooking methods such as roasting, grilling, baking for foods such as chicken, meat, chips to prevent you from using too much oil in your food.

8. Should you want to garnish your food, use fruits and vegetables and not oil as using oil it is likely to increase your fat intake. Additionally, skim the oil on top of a prepared food before serving.

9. Do you like pizza? If you do, try to choose pizza with lower fat toppings to help you cut down on fat intake. Also decide the number of times in a week or month you will eat pizza. This way you do not eat pizza every day as this is an unhealthy habit.

10. Reduce the number of times you eat outside or take-aways and if you do go out to eat or buy takeaways, go for low fat choices.

Get more tips from the book, Become A Healthier You.

Photo (above) credit: www.sphil.nhs.uk

About contributor
Irene Danquah, ANutr holds a BSc Biochemistry from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Ghana and an MSc Public Health Nutrition from the University of Southampton, UK. Irene is member of the UK Association for Nutrition (AfN) and the Ghana Nutrition Association. She is on the UK Voluntary Register of Nutritionists (UKVRN) as an Associate Nutritionist. Irene is the author of the book, Become A Healthier You. Like the World Bank, Irene also believes "Nutrition is an investment issue and improved nutrition is one of the major drivers of economic growth - World Bank, 2006". 


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