Craving Crunchy Fried Treats? Try This Healthier Swap!

We all know that irresistible feeling when we smell French fries cooking or catch a whiff of any other delectable dish being fried in hot oil. Our mouths start to water, and our bellies rumble. But when the craving for fried food takes hold, there are a few things you can do to ensure you satisfy that craving while still keeping your health in mind.

Why Frying Your Own Food is Best

First and foremost, if you can, always opt to fry your own food. The oil used by many restaurants and food stands is often reused multiple times. Each time oil is reused for frying, it produces toxins called toxic aldehydes. While these toxic aldehydes aren’t harmful at low levels, they accumulate every time the oil is reused, and this can become a problem when consumed in fried foods.

Once these aldehydes enter your body, they can interact with hormones and enzymes, potentially leading to serious health issues such as cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease. To avoid consuming these harmful toxins, it’s best to make your own fried foods at home with fresh oil.

Choosing the Right Oil for Frying

When it comes to frying your own food, the type of oil you choose makes a big difference. You should aim to use coconut oil or, if that’s unavailable, olive oil. Unrefined coconut oil is a healthier option for salad dressings, but when it comes to high-heat cooking like frying, refined coconut oil is preferred, as it has a higher smoke point.

The smoke point of an oil is the temperature at which its impurities start to burn off and create toxins. Refined coconut oil has a smoke point of 400 degrees Fahrenheit, whereas unrefined coconut oil has a smoke point of only 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Olive oil is another healthy oil option for frying food. Research conducted in Spain established that olive oil can be heated safely up to 375 degrees Fahrenheit when frying food. Olive oil was found to perform better for deep-frying compared to other commonly used oils like corn, sunflower, and soy oil.

Moderation is Key

While indulging in some homemade fried foods is a better option than going out to a fast-food restaurant, it’s essential to remember that fried foods should be consumed sparingly.

A study conducted at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle found that eating fried food once a week or more increases the risk of developing cancer. So, while enjoying homemade fried foods is better than going out for fast food, moderation is crucial.

Healthier Fried Food Options

If you’re looking to satisfy your fried food craving while keeping a healthier approach, there are alternatives you can try. For example, instead of going out for French fries, create a healthier version at home.

Simply slice up a couple of potatoes into strips, place them in a pan, and cover them with coconut oil. Cook the potato strips in the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes, then take them out and stir them around before cooking for another 20 minutes.

When they are done cooking, sprinkle some salt and any other spices you desire on the potato strips, and you’ll have a healthier and more nutritious alternative to traditional French fries that still satisfies your craving for fried food.

The Takeaway

While it’s tough to resist the tempting allure of fried foods, there are steps you can take to ensure you’re making healthier choices when indulging in these tasty treats.

Frying your own food with the right type of oil and consuming fried foods in moderation helps keep you healthier overall. Remember to try out healthier alternatives, like homemade, baked potato strips, and you’ll find your cravings for fried foods will become easier to manage without sacrificing your health.