can be high in energy, mainly due to the high fat content. Often they
are also high in salt, and simple sugars. However, there is no need to
give up your favorite hawker foods because of diabetes. With the current
emphasis on quality service, it is becoming more acceptable to request
for your favorite dish to be prepared in a healthier way. This can make
a considerable difference to the nutritional value of your choices. By
making slight modifications, home recipes can also be made healthier
with less oil and fat (especially saturated fats).
- Ask for half the normal amount of
oil used in cooking. This can mean 40% less fat for a plate of fried
- Leave behind the
gravy. This reduces saturated fat by about 50%.
- Ask for less organ meats, and more lean
meat. This cuts the cholesterol from a normal serving by about 30%.
- Ask for smaller servings. Small orders
of oyster omelets can mean 30% less energy compared to the larger
- Ask for the skin to
be removed. This reduces the fat content of a dish such as briyani by
- Ask for a serving of
vegetables at rice stalls. This adds at least 35% more dietary fiber to
- Ask for no gravy on
rice. This reduces the sodium content in a plate of chicken rice by
- Avoid desserts with
heavy syrups. Select from the wide variety of fresh fruit instead.
- Choose cooking methods that use little
or no added oil, and fat. Use methods such as grilling, dry-roasting,
stir-frying, microwaving, boiling or steaming.
- Use unsaturated cooking oils such as
soybean oil, safflower oil, corn oil, peanut oil, olive oil or sesame
- Cook with a non-stick pan
to cut down on the use of oil or fat. Brush the wok or pan with oil, and
cook over moderate heat to avoid food sticking to the pan.
- Choose lean cuts of meat, and trim off
visible fat. Also remove skin from meat, and poultry.
- When grilling or roasting, baste the
meat with wine, water or stock instead of oil.
- Replace coconut milk with skim / low fat
milk or low fat unsweetened yogurt.
- Replace oil, and mayonnaise dressing in
salads with low fat unsweetened yogurt. Sweeten with artificial
sweetener. Flavor with herbs, spices, minced onions garlic, chilies,
lime or lemon juice.
coating food for deep-frying with batter, and always drain the excess
oil on kitchen paper towels.
Chill soups, and stews in the refrigerator. The layer of solidified fat
can then be removed.
recipes using water, always replace the butter with polyunsaturated
margarine. Try to further reduced the quantity required.
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