There are plenty of reasons to reduce your fat intake. Maybe you’re motivated by a weight loss goal, or perhaps your yearly physical revealed that your cholesterol levels need an adjustment.
It’s important to keep in mind that your body needs fat to function, so don’t try to completely cut fat from your diet. Focus on healthy fats and watch your intake by following the tips below.
Dietary Fats: Good or Bad?
If your cholesterol level is worrying you, take a close look at what kinds of fats you are consuming. Reduce your saturated fats, or those that are solid at room temperature. These are found mainly in animal products like butter, full-fat cheese, and fatty meat. Instead, include unsaturated fats, found in vegetable oils, fish and nuts.(1) Focus on generally improving your diet with healthy shopping lists, or maybe even try going vegan for a while!
Small changes can lead to big results. This is why we want to show you how to substantially reduce your fat intake in the long term by making just a few, tiny changes now. It’s really easy – you’ll see!
Cooking Tips to Reduce Fat Intake
Use reduced amounts of fat
A small amount is enough to achieve desired taste. The more fat the better, is simply not true. Current guidelines on dietary fat recommend limiting fat intake to 30% of your total daily energy intake.(2)
Opt for quality pots and pans
Use non-stick pans and stainless steel or clay pots. They help you prepare delicious dishes while requiring less fats and oils.
Onions rather than fat
When cooking, use less fat and oil and more onions, garlic and herbs to season your food.
Use oil in a spray can
This way, less oil will make it in the pan and onto your plate.
Two to three portions of fish per week will have positive effects on your cholesterol level. When prepared with little fat/oil, fish makes for a perfect, light lunch or dinner.
Season your dishes with fresh herbs and exotic spices rather than lots of fat and heavy sauces.
Save on calories with dark oils
When cooking with dark oils, like sesame seed oil, we automatically use less. They also offer a more intense taste. Try pumpkin seed oil on your salads! Pumpkin seeds are loaded with magnesium.
Prepare fish “en papillote”
You just need aluminum foil and an oven! This method allows you to save on the need for oils and dressings while preserving the original taste of the fish.
Measure with a teaspoon
Always use a teaspoon to measure fat and oil for a better control of the quantities needed for cooking.
Use paper rather than grease
Use baking paper for baking to save on fat when greasing.
If eating canned food, like canned fish, always opt for foods in their own juice or water. By avoiding oil packed foods, you can save loads of fat and calorie intake.
Don’t skimp on vinegar
Use lots of vinegar in your salad dressings. Cider vinegar, for instance, stimulates your digestion, and some research indicates that it could support weight loss.(3)
A wok helps you prepare delicious dishes with substantially reduced amounts of fat.
Cool down soups after cooking
Fat drops will rise to the surface and are easy to skim off.
Try cooking with fresh local vegetables
Broccoli, cucumber, celery, garlic, onion, spinach, tomatoes and zucchini are all excellent options. They’re all tasty ingredients and packed with nutrients. If you’re trying to lose weight, fresh vegetables should be your go-to food.
Roasted instead of breaded
No matter what the ingredients, roasted is always the better choice here. Breaded food typically contains almost twice as many calories as natural items roasted in the oven.
Use paper towels to drain off fat
Put your food on a piece of paper towel after frying. It will absorb the excess fat and prevent it from accumulating in your arteries.
Eat poultry without skin
By skinning chicken, turkey and duck, you can save heaps of calories and fat.
Do without oil from time to time
You really can do without oil. Use broth or vinegar instead of oil and butter.
Adapt your recipes
To reduce calories, simply use half of the fat and sugar indicated in your recipes. Consider using a sugar substitute to cut down on sugar.
Steer clear of trans fats
Trans fatty acids, whether industrially produced or those present in the fat of cows, sheep, and goats, have been shown to increase the ratio of LDL (bad cholesterol) to HDL (good) cholesterol in the blood.(4)
With just a few simple changes to your cooking and food prep habits you can significantly reduce your fat intake. Do your cholesterol levels a favor and switch out saturated fats for healthy unsaturated fats.