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Obesity And The Importance Of Nonstick Cookware

While it is true that obesity has many causes and not all of them dietary, it is equally true that the consumption of excess fat promotes the condition. This is particularly true in the case of children.

Most children love fried food, as do many adults, because this method of cooking slightly caramelizes the food by burning natural sugars. In short, it makes the food sweet to taste.

Grilling, which is a healthier alternative under certain conditions, has a similar effect, and so too does roasting.

But the real villain where fat consumption is concerned is frying, because the food often has fat added to it, the principal role of which is to prevent meat from sticking to the pan it's cooking in.

Of course it is true that using oil or margarine for this purpose is a step up from using butter or lard, however they are still fats and best avoided altogether if at all possible.

One way to do this is to use non-stick cookware, when no additional fat is needed.

This type of cookware has received some bad press recently and is of particular concern to pet owners. There has been much speculation that the death of caged birds has been linked to toxic fumes from the heated surfaces.

It's important to understand that all the evidence in this regard has been related to Teflon coated surfaces and is thought to be a by-product of the Dupont manufacturing process. There are plenty of other non-stick surfaces available which do not have this type of stigma attached.

In fact the use of this type of cooking surface has now become so widespread, it has led to a new style of healthy home cooking using those double-sided, solid metal grills so beloved of ex-heavyweight boxers.

These have an added fat-reducing bonus in that any grease cooked out of the meat runs away into a separate tray, and of course no added fat is necessary to properly cook the food.

This means that lean cuts of meat such as chicken breast and loin of lamb remain just that, lean. This is a huge bonus not just for those of us fighting obesity, but for anyone who cares about having a healthy heart and circulatory system.

Non-stick surfaces also mean ease of use, and this too can prompt people to forsake red meat for fish on more occasions than was previously the case. In addition, with the new grills there is no need for fatty batters and cooking times are very quick, further helping the busy family cook to 'do the right thing'.

If the health arguments don't convince you, perhaps the economic ones will. Most non-stick cookware is based on low grade aluminium, making it far cheaper to produce and distribute than the alternatives such as stainless steel and cast iron.

And of course just a simple rinse in warm, soapy water is all that is required to keep non-stick surfaces clean. Even the most over-weight of us can surely manage that.

Submitted by:

Michael Sheridan

Michael Sheridan is a former head-chef and an acknowledged authority and published writer on cooking matters. His website, which can be found at http://www.all-about-cooking.com, contains a wealth of information, hints, tips and recipes for busy home cooks.


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