In cooking of foods, you find out that a particular type of food material can be cooked in various ways. You can subject a particular food to boiling, frying or baking and each method will produce a food delicacy. Boiling is the most common cooking method but baking and frying are slowly overshadowing boiling method. It is therefore important to know the impact of baking and frying on foods and their health benefits.
Baking is a food preparation method that is carried out using an oven. It makes use of dry heat as a medium of cooking the foods. As the heat travels through the doughs and batters, it transforms them into baked goods that have a firm dry crust and a soft center. Virtually all kinds of foods can be baked, but baking is mostly carried out using flours to produce varieties of food products like cakes, pastries, biscuits, cookies, bread, pies etc. These food products are collectively referred to as baked goods and are often sold in a bakery or confectionary. Various other foods like meat, fish, eggs and beans can also be baked.
Frying is a method of cooking which involves cooking food in oil or any other fat. Pan-frying is the most common form of frying and it is done by generally turning food over once or twice during cooking with the aid of a tong or spatula. This is done till the food changes colour or texture, which signifies that the food is cooked. There are different ways of frying like; stir frying, pan frying, shallow frying and deep frying. Frying techniques depend on
- Fat required for frying
- The cooking time
- The type of cooking vessel
- Food manipulation or end product.
When choosing the right food to stay health, the cooking method matters a lot. It is advised to avoid frying foods and settle for baking instead. The key to healthy cooking is to capture the flavour and retain the nutrients of your food without adding excessive amount of fat, sugar and salt. You can achieve all this by baking your foods rather than frying them. There are several proven reasons why baking is healthier than frying, they include;
- Baking Reduces Risk of Heart, Kidney and Lung damage.
When starchy foods are heated in oil at high temperatures, it leads to the oxidation of the oils. The oxidized oil causes health problems like, damage to kidney, heart and lungs. Consuming oxidized oil can also lead to the increased risk of high blood pressure and atherosclerosis. Baking, which does not require any addition of oil is therefore a better option.
- Frying Promotes Obesity, Stroke and Diabetes.
Many deep fried foods are cooked in partially hydrogenated oils which increases the shelf life of the food. But, consuming such oils reduces the effectiveness of the immune system and promotes diabetes, stroke and obesity.
- Frying Increases Calorie Intake
Oils used for frying contain saturated fats which are high in calories. Eating fried foods adds to the calorie count in foods. However, baking does not add any additional calories and fats. So eating a food in baked form is better than eating that particular food in fried form.
Baking of foods is the better option for people who want to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Health conscious people and those who are on a special diet, will benefit from the low-fat content in baked foods and still enjoy the tenderness and flavour of baked foods.
There are several foods that are enjoyed more if you bake them rather than their fried alternatives. Examples of such foods are:
- Baked french fries
- Baked chicken
- Baked shrimp
- Baked beef
- Baked beans