Best cooking methods for an easy low-fat diet – avoid common kitchen mistakes

Michael Mosley discusses the improved quality of liquid diets

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Low-fat diets have been hailed a weight loss hero in recent years, and doctors might advise people to switch to this method because calories from fat are higher per gram than those from protein or carbohydrates. Foods that are higher in fat such as snacks and junk food will also have less nutritional value than other more healthy options, like fruit and vegetables.

The current guidelines recommend that most adults get 20-35 percent of their daily calories from fat.

This is about 44-77 grams of fat a day if a person eats 2,000 calories a day.

Experts also suggest choosing lower-fat and reduced-fat dairy products or alternatives in order to limit the amount of fat consumed.

But that’s not to say people should rule out fat as a whole.

Healthy fats are an “essential” part of a person’s diet, and knowing the difference between “good” and “bad” ones can help people make more informed choices about their meals.

But when it comes to cooking at home, people can easily up their fat intake without realising.

Researchers have found that frying foods at a high heat can be “particularly problematic”.

This is because when the oils break down, they can form trans-fatty acids, which are considered the “worst” type of fat to eat.

To reduce the amount of fat a person incorporates into their home-cooked meals, they should opt for the following methods.


It has been found that people lose a number of vitamins and minerals through various cooking methods.

Steaming food such as vegetables maintain their nutritional values, ensuring that their added vitamins such as vitamin B, riboflavin, thiamine, niacin, biotin, B12, pantothenic acid and vitamin C, as well as minerals such as calcium, phosphorous, potassium, and zinc are retained.


Grilling food has been considered one of the “healthiest” ways to cook.

It uses less oil and melts the fat from meat.

It also retains the nutrients and the flavours stay intact as the cooking time is reduced.


This is also considered a very healthy option, as people don’t need to use oil in order to do so.

Foods such as chicken, fish and vegetables can be baked in greaseproof paper or foil, so as to reduce the need for fattening oils that can add calories.

When sticking to a low-fat diet, the NHS suggest measuring oil with a teaspoon to control the amount that is used, or use an oil spray.

They also recommend trimming visible fat and take the skin off meat and poultry before cooking it.

To avoid other extra calories and fats, people can opt to sprinkle lemon juice, herbs, and spices on their food rather than using cheese, butter and cream-based sauces.

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