Thursday, 18 February 2016

Tips for a Healthy Valentine's Meal: Take care of her health

Tips for a Healthy Valentine's Meal: Take care of her health
Dr K K Aggarwal
On Valentine's Day you have choices: fresh flowers or dark non milky non sugary chocolate; dine in, dine out or home cooking. Make sure you celebrate love with a safe and heart healthy meal.
While eating out
·         Choose place that has safe food practices.
·         Make sure that the glasses, silverware, napkins and tablecloths are clean.
·         Look for hidden sources of sodium. More than 40% of sodium that we eat comes from these common foods: bread and rolls, cold cuts and cured meats, pizza, poultry, soups, sandwiches, cheese, pasta dishes, meat dishes, and snacks.
·         Look up the nutritional information in advance.
·         Do not be in hurry. Foods like meat, poultry, and fish need to be cooked to a temperature high enough to kill harmful bacteria that may be present.
·         Raw or undercooked eggs can be a hidden hazard in foods like Caesar salad, custards, and some sauces, unless they are commercially pasteurized.
·         Share. Most restaurant servings are enough for two.
·         If you're not going straight home (within two hours of being served or one hour if temperatures are above 90°F), leave the leftovers at the restaurant.
Tips for takeout, delivery, or preparing at home
·         Choose low sodium options. Spice up your meal with seasonings and avoid prep-ackaged mixes that may contain a lot of salt
·         Make recipes healthier, avoid trans fats and saturated fats
·         Steer clear of frying. Opt for methods that add little or no fat, like roasting, grilling, or steaming.
·         Keep HOT Food HOT: Once food is cooked it should be held at an internal temperature of 140°F or above. Just keeping food warm (between 40°F and 140°F) encourages fast growth of germs that cause food poisoning.
·         Keep COLD Food COLD: Cold foods should be kept at 40°F or below.
·         Two hours rule: Throw away all perishable foods such as meat, poultry, eggs, and casseroles that have been left at room temperature longer than two hours (one hour in temperatures above 90°F).
·         If your romantic dinner is just too big to finish, go ahead and put it in the fridge or freezer but eat it within three to four days.

[Adapted from CDC]

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