In this article we tell you how you can avoid fried foods in your diet and lead a healthier lifestyle. See how to achieve it below.
Fritters are popular and common. These are those edibles that are subjected to cooking in hot oil. They are easy to find at most restaurants and fast food outlets. Therefore, we give you some tips to avoid fried foods in the diet.
Fries are unhealthy for several reasons . Among them, because they can increase heart problems. Also, when oil is heated, toxic substances are produced.
What are fried foods?
Frying is a simple cooking method. It consists of heating oil or edible fat to 160 or 180 degrees Celsius and putting the food to cook. So, fried foods are those that go through the oil and form a crust that is characteristic of roasting the proteins.
In this cooking process, changes in the nutritional composition occur. The most common is the increase in total fat when it is absorbed or its decrease if it goes out into the oil.
Adverse effects of eating fried foods
Eating fried foods has some harmful health consequences. This is because changes occur in the components of the food. In addition, the oil where it is fried is also modified.
Formation of toxic substances
During frying, deterioration of the oil occurs. Therefore, chemical compounds are formed, such as free radicals, and fatty acids are released from triglycerides, making them more susceptible to oxidation. Polymers are also formed from them. Among them, the most harmful are the ones that we will discuss.
Acrylamides, a result of cooking and processing oil at high temperatures, have been found to be toxic. They affect the peripheral and central nervous systems, impeding motor and sensory functions.
In addition, studies ensure that it has the ability to form cancerous tumors in organs such as the brain, skin and lungs. In fact, the International Center for Research on Cancer ensures that it is a possible carcinogen. But more studies are needed to corroborate these results.
In frying, oxysterols are also formed. These are chemical compounds that result from the oxidation of cholesterol in foods of animal origin.
Oxysterols can cause negative effects in the body, such as preventing the normal synthesis of cholesterol in the body and inducing apoptosis, which is programmed cell death. This could affect the integrity of different tissues.
Likewise, the formation of trans fats occurs. Normally, the double bonds of unsaturated fatty acids remain in the cis position . However, chemical processes at an industrial level cause them to change to the trans position, not recognized by the lipase enzymes of the human body.
High frying temperatures can also turn them trans , especially when the oil reaches the smoke point. That is, at the temperature at which the oil subjected to frying begins to decompose. The first indicator is the actual formation of smoke when heat is applied.
The consumption of trans fats is related to an increase in cardiovascular diseases. According to the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), the intake of trans fats is responsible for 537,000 premature deaths from heart disease.
Fries generate trans fats that have a greater capacity to block arterial circulation.
Some vitamins (A, D, E and K) dissolve in fat, according to research. So, when they are subjected to frying, they are lost because they remain in the oil .
In this way, it is prevented from reaching the body and consumption is not as nutritious as if the food were cooked in another way. In addition, other vitamins are lost, such as C, B1, B2 and folic acid.
Similarly, frying helps the evaporation of water in food. Thus, it achieves that it is toasted and with fewer nutrients to contribute.
In the frying process, food can absorb the oil in which it is being cooked . In one study, potatoes, green plantains, ripe plantains, and cassava were compared in terms of which ones absorbed more oil.
All four had a significant increase in fat, but the food with the most fat after frying was the ripe plantain. This is because it is softer, with more moisture and more sugars to caramelize.
However, just as fats can be absorbed, they can also decrease them . Mainly, it occurs with unsaturated fatty acids, which change to trans and free radicals. While saturated ones are much more stable, according to research.
Tips to avoid fried foods in the diet
Now that you know why you shouldn’t eat fried foods and their harmful effects on health, we tell you how to avoid fried foods in your diet and lead a healthier life.
1. Opt for other cooking methods
One of our tips to avoid fried foods in the diet is to use alternative ways of cooking. There are healthier types of cooking, such as cooking food steamed or with little water and just enough time. Always putting the food when it reaches the boiling point.
Another nutritious way of cooking is in the oven. This is how most vitamins and minerals are preserved. But it must be done at very high temperatures for short periods of time.
Grilling can also be healthy. Provided that medium-high temperatures are used, since very high temperatures can result in burned food.
2. Use cooking without oil
Currently, there are hot air fryers that transmit heat at temperatures between 170 degrees and 200 degrees Celsius, similar to those of normal frying. This appliance manages to cook food with 85% less fat.
In addition, one study found that hot air cooking is able to reduce the formation of acrylamide by 90%. This means less toxic to ingest.
Air fryers have meant an important advance in gastronomic technology to eat healthier.
3. Use the best oils for frying
Hydrogenated oils, such as vegetable mixes, are best for frying. They change less with heat and retain some of their polyunsaturated fat. In this way, the production of toxic substances is reduced.
Within the pure oils, in a study it was found that coconut resists heat better, because it has 90% saturated fatty acids. It was shown that 8 continuous hours at a temperature of 180 degrees Celsius did not change its chemical composition.
Another study also points to extra virgin olive oil as a good option for frying. However, this type of oil is very pure and, despite the fact that it has monounsaturated fats that also withstand heat, the flavor does not withstand high temperatures.
4. Do not reuse oil
The reuse of oil increases its oxidation state. The production of free radicals and the formation of trans fatty acids are increased.
Its excessive and prolonged consumption can cause liver and heart problems. This is confirmed by some studies.
There is no set number of times an oil can be reused. That depends on the food that was cooked there, how much it was cooked, and at what temperatures. Also how dirty it was.
So it should not be used more than twice.
Change the way you eat
Our tips to avoid fried foods in the diet can be easily followed. But you have to have the willpower to leave them.
This is an important factor, since if you are in the habit of eating them, it may not be easy. However, if you can’t get them out completely, reduce their impact by improving the way you consume them.