for Healthy International Cuisine
Our taste buds crave variety. While home cooking
is great for most meals, there are times when we undoubtedly crave
international cuisine. Due to the unfamiliarity with foods of other
cultures, many restaurant goers may not know how to make healthy
choices when it comes to international foods. Below are several
types of cultural cuisines with tips on what you should and should
not eat in order to follow the rules of a healthy diet.
Several Chinese meals include a large amount of rice and vegetables,
small amounts of meat, and low-fat methods to prepare the food.
If you are craving Chinese food, there are several options to
satisfy your hunger. There are, however, several fried foods
included on the menu at a Chinese food restaurant.
Try to avoid the following:
prepared with whole eggs, such as lobster sauce, egg drop
soup, and egg foo yung.
- Deep fried
dishes such as Kung Pao Chicken, General Tso's Chicken,
Mu Shu Pork, Egg Rolls, fried noodles, fried rice, or fried
- Dishes with
heavy sauces or nuts. Take-out Chinese restaurants use way
too much sauce and too many nuts to be included in
a healthy diet.
Good Chinese Food Choices:
with broccoli and shrimp
- Foods prepared
in the stir-fry method with only a small amount of unsaturated
dishes tend to be lighter
- Meals heavy
on the vegetable servings
With the cheese, beans, meat and fats of Hispanic foods, a healthy
eater might think twice about dining in a Mexican restaurant,
but if prepared on how to make Hispanic cuisine more healthful,
you can enjoy a hearty meal.
Try to avoid the following Hispanic food temptations:
pork skins, sour cream and guacamole
sauces such as sofrito and mojo criollo
- Fried foods,
including fried tortillas, fried vegetable fritters (alcapurrias),
banana slices (tostones), and refried
Instead try the following substitutions:
tortillas and regular salsa
- Meals prepared
with liquid oil rather than lard
- Boiled dumplings
(pastels), boiled bananas (tuineo, platano), baked or broiled
chicken, boiled beans
- Lean beef,
chicken, or bean filled soft burritos, enchiladas, or tacos
Some good tips for any time you eat out
Eating out is always difficult. With no portion control and an
incomplete understanding of the ingredients in some foods, there
is a high probability of going over your calorie or fat limit
(not to mention sodium!) but here are some general rules to follow
no matter what type of food your get.
buffets. You will obviously consume more calories if
you are able to go back for seconds…and thirds…
order your food. If you know of a way to make a menu item
healthier, feel free to special order your food. If a restaurant
does not prepare meals ahead of time then they should be
more than happy to fulfill your request.
- Share your
food. Split an order with a friend to cut back on portion size.
portions in half. Immediately put half of your meal away
in a take-away container. It is a convenient way to cut
back on calories and have lunch prepared for tomorrow.
- Order dressings
and sauce on the side. Restaurants typically drench their salads
If you have control over
your dressing and sauces you can cut back on a significant amount of calories.
Take this information into consideration next time you dine out
and you should be able to keep your calories under control.
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