Did you know, the food we cook, no matter how delicious or healthy it is, can become unhealthy when cooked the wrong way? The meat we cook, the seasonings we add, the oil we use to fry foods are directly proportionate to how it affects our body and overall health. No matter how good a cook we are, there are times when we unconsciously commit mistakes while cooking, which make our food unhealthy. For instance, cooking vegetables until they get soggy can eliminate all its nutrients and stir-frying them can preserve the same. It is time to identify more of these cooking mistakes and avoid them in the future to save ourselves from any future repercussions.
Here are some cooking mistakes that are making your food unhealthy
1. Excess usage of seasonings and dressings
We all love to add an extra dash of seasoning and dressings like soy sauce or mayonnaise to our salads and sandwiches. But have you ever wondered their excess usage can be super unhealthy? These dressings carry a huge amount of sodium, which can lead to water retention.
2. Exposing honey to high temperatures
Honey has a long standing reputation of containing medicinal properties and makes an incredible substitute for sugar and artificial sweeteners. Honey is a natural sweetener and is best consumed in raw form. Exposing it to high temperatures can lead to elimination of its medicinal properties. Cooking honey can deteriorate the quality. It loses its essential enzymes and nutrients making it poisonous. Moreover, cooking it to 40 degree Celsius causes a negative chemical change that makes it taste bitter.
3. Overheating healthy oils
While some vegetable oils can be heated to a certain temperature, there are some healthy oils like olive oil and coconut oil that one should never introduce to extreme heat. These oils contain nutritional compounds that can be destroyed when heated above their smoke points. For instance, sunflower oil should always be used for sauteing, frying and roasting. Whereas, for flavouring or drizzling over prepared food, extra virgin oil or flaxseed oil is best.
4. Frying your food
Fried foods may taste delicious; however, they are nothing but unhealthy, trans-fat-laden treats. The act of frying turns otherwise healthy foods, like vegetables and lean meats into unhealthy 'yummy' treats. Moreover, these foods are linked with increased chances of developing conditions like diabetes and heart conditions. Nowadays, air fryers are available in most places, which need a teaspoonful of oil to fry any food. If you want to switch to healthy and enjoy fried foods at the same time, make sure you use air-fryers.
5. Using the wrong cookware
Just like it is important to know what ingredient goes in a particular dish, it is also important to know the cookware you use to cook. Non-stick cookware is said to contain Teflon, which contains a man-made chemical known as perfluorooctanoic acid, which is said to cause problems in overall health, especially liver. It is best to go back to the basics, and cook in cookware made of cast iron, glass, ceramic or stainless steel.
6. Adding uncooked salt over the food
Some of us have a habit of sprinkling salt over the food in order to alter the taste of bland dish. However, consuming salt in an uncooked form has been linked to heart diseases and kidney problems. According to Dietitian and Nutritionist, Dr. Harjeet Kaur from Amandeep Hospital, "It is believed to be especially harsh on both, the circulatory system and the nervous system. Additionally, it also causes an upheaval on the precariously balanced lymph system."
7. Cooking vegetables for too long
Cooking vegetables until they turn soggy can eliminate their nutrients. In order to get them right, avoid boiling them for longer periods as this process leaches the nutrients out of them. One of the best ways to preserve nutrients is to stir-fry them lightly. Alternatively, blanch them in hot water if you wish to enjoy them in soup. Make sure your vegetables are still firm and lightly crisp.
8. Peeling off the vegetables
Do you know, peels of some vegetables have more nutrients than the veggie itself? The skin of potatoes, carrots, pumpkins, cucumber and apples contain a lot of vitamins that provide you with extra minerals and vitamins. The peels contain a lot of fibre, which is great for your digestive system.
Make sure you are not committing these mistakes while cooking as these can easily cost your overall health.