Enjoy dining while eating healthy
Great cuisine doesn’t have to be bad for you
Many adults are aware that high cholesterol is one of the primary risk factors for coronary heart disease.
For some people, the thought of lowering cholesterol is seen as the end of the line for enjoying good food. However, the American Heart Association notes that you can still enjoy the best your favorite restaurants have to offer while simultaneously lowering your cholesterol.
Steakhouses: Among the most popular style of restaurants throughout the country, steakhouses don’t need to be avoided by those looking for healthier food options.
A few simple changes in what you order can do the job. For example, instead of ordering thick cuts such as porterhouse or T-bone, order leaner cuts such as london broil, filet mignon or tenderloin. As for side orders, substitute fried or scalloped potatoes with a baked potato or even rice and ask for your vegetables to be steamed and not fried and you have a delicious and much healthier meal in front of you.
Mexican: Few menus offer more delicious foods than those at Mexican restaurants. Fortunately, those menus typically offer healthy choices you might not be aware of. Initially, before sitting down, request that no fried tortilla chips be brought to the table. Most Mexixan restaurants offer large entrees to begin with, so you won’t be going hungry anyway.
For your main course, ask to replace flour tortillas with corn tortillas, and choose grilled chicken or fish over carnitas or chorizo. Another popular but unhealthy ingredient in many Mexican dishes is sour cream. Replace sour cream with healthier choices such as salsa, cilantro or pico de gallo.
Italian: Italian cuisine is among the most delicious in the world, making Italian restaurants some of the most popular. While it’s tempting to let loose and eat whatever you’d like, you can still enjoy a great Italian meal without risking a rise in your cholesterol levels. Rather than cheese- or meat-filled dishes, choose pasta primavera with fresh vegetables or pasta with white or red clam sauce.
Exchange a favorite parmigiana (floured, fried and baked with cheese) dish with a marsala (sauce made with wine) dish.
Chinese: A big part of making Chinese dishes healthier is asking for main courses to be broiled, boiled or steamed instead of fried. Also, egg rolls are popular appetizers at many Chinese restaurants. Unfortunately, egg rolls are not very healthy. Replace egg rolls or fried wontons with steamed dumplings.
To learn more about developing healthy eating habits, visit the AHA Web site at www.americanheart.org.