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How to boost flavor with reduced fat

14 August 2020

For all of us, it is important that we keep an eye on the amount and type of fats we include in our diets, particularly the amount of saturated fats. A lot of recipes and pre-prepared foods use fats to add flavor, but there’s no reason reduced fat food shouldn’t also be flavourful. When thinking about the food you eat, it’s important to remember that not all fats are unhealthy, but that you should try and limit the less healthy fats. You can learn more about different kinds of fats in our Facts about Fats blog article. So what are some simple ways to reduce the fat content in the foods you eat?

When cooking meat

Try alternative methods of cooking meats without additional fat:​

  • Grill your meat, rather than frying, to caramelise the sugars within and boost the flavor
  • Use non-stick pans without oil and let the meat juices provide moisture
  • Poach the meat in broth, wine or water with herbs

Try some simple food swaps

You could swap foods or recipe ingredients that are high in saturated fat for reduced fat or unsaturated alternatives, examples include:

  • Using Greek Yoghurt in recipes in place of whole milk or cream
  • Using vegetables (e.g. tomatoes or pureed cooked vegetables) as a base for sauces instead of cream or butter
  • Replacing fatty meats with leaner alternatives, e.g. use minced turkey as an alternative for minced beef
  • Using apple sauce, mashed bananas or pureed prunes in baking as alternatives to oil and butter

Try reduced fat or fat free alternatives

You may find that many lower-fat versions of your favourite foods work just as well and taste just as good as the original. However, you should be aware that in a lot of products the reduction in fat is made up for by an increase in the carbohydrate (and therefore sugar) content, so keep an eye on the label.

Make foods from scratch

Instead of buying pre-prepared meals from the supermarket, try making the dish yourself at home. Pre-prepared meals can be less healthy as they often contain more saturated fat and salt than if you had made it from scratch. By making the dish yourself, you have more control over the ingredients and can make some simple food swaps like those suggested above. This means you can make the dish healthier and reduce the fat content.

The views expressed in the Accu-Chek blog are not necessarily those of Roche Diabetes Care Limited or our publishers. The content is provided for general information only. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely – you must obtain professional or specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content. Although we make reasonable efforts to ensure that the content is up to date, we make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content is accurate, complete or up-to-date.

Sources:

British Dietetic Association, Food Fact Sheets, Fat [Internet] Birmingham, United Kingdom [cited 8 Apr 2020]. Available from https://www.bda.uk.com/resource/fat.html

NHS, Live Well, Eat Well [Internet] United Kingdom [cited 15 Apr 2020] Available from https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/eat-less-saturated-fat/