When it comes to leading a healthier life, it all starts in the kitchen. If you're searching for ways to add some more nutrition to your plate or you want to cut down your salt and sugar intake, check out these simple cooking tips for healthy eating at home.
The next time you're planning a dish, try substituting your usual go-to's for these cooking methods so that you can enjoy a healthy meal that's just as delicious:
Grilling rather than frying fish.
Poachingrather than frying an egg.
Steaming rather than boiling vegetables.
Bakingrather than deep-fat frying.
When cooking with meat, why not try:
Choosing lean cuts of meat and removing skin or visible fat.
Skimming off the fat that rises to the surface when cooking meats.
Bulking out meat recipes with extra vegetables and pulses.
Eating fewer sausages and burgers, as they can be high in fat and salt.
To make your fish more gut-friendly, try these techniques:
Poach, bake or grill your fish rather than frying it.
To make fish and chips a healthier choice; pick thicker chips or try potato wedges; sprinkle pepper, rather than salt, on chips.
Fruit and vegetables
While fruit and vegetables are already superfoods for your body, you can optimise their benefits by following these healthy eating tips:
When boiling vegetables, use the water for a sauce or gravy.
Cook peeled vegetables as soon as possible to retain nutrients.
Avoid adding fat or rich sauces to vegetables (carrots glazed with butter) or adding sugar to fruit (stewed apple).
Milk and dairy
By making these simple and easy changes to your milk and dairy choices, you'll reap big rewards for minimal effort:
Choose lower-fat versions, such as semi-skimmed milk, low-fat yoghurts and lower-fat cheeses (including mozzarella, feta and ricotta).
Low-fat natural yoghurt and fromage frais are good alternatives to cream, sour cream or crème fraîche in recipes.
Grate cheese to reduce the amount you use.
Starchy and carbohydrates are essential for your diet and can make a great base for meals, however, it's important to avoid having too many starchy meals. Here are a few suggestions to help you limit your starch intake:
Eat pasta with tomato sauce, instead of a creamy cheese sauce.
Choose seeded, wholemeal, granary and wholegrain loaves of bread.
Try baked potatoes with baked beans, cottage cheese or lentil chilli.
Reducing salt content
This an obvious one we know, but by limiting the amount of salt you add to your diet, you really will feel healthy. Try out some of these alternatives the next time you're reaching for the shaker:
Season dishes with herbs, garlic, ginger, chilli and lime.
Squeeze lemon on fish or seafood.
Use black pepper on pasta or scrambled eggs.
You don't have to miss out on dessert to lead a healthier life. Instead, try:
Eating an exciting fruit or making up a fruit salad.
Making a fruit pie with just one crust - either a top or a pastry base.
Looking for more kitchen tips? Take a look at our courses here.