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7 of the Worst Reasons to Eat Fried Foods

Worst Reasons to Eat Fried Foods

Deep frying is a common cooking method used all over the world. Restaurants and fast food chains often use it as a quick and inexpensive way to prepare foods.

Popular fried foods include fish and chips, chicken strips, and cheese sticks, although you can fry just about anything. Many people like the taste of fried foods.

However, these foods tend to be high in calories and trans fats, so eating a lot of them can have negative effects on your health.

This article explains why commercially fried foods are bad for you and provides some healthy alternatives to consider.

What are the problems with fried foods?

Fried foods are often cooked in vegetable or seed oils. When heated, these oils can form trans fats, which are linked to a number of health issues, including an increased risk of several diseases.

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1- Fried foods are rich in calories

Fried foods contain more calories than their non-fried counterparts. Fried foods are usually coated with batter or flour before frying.

Furthermore, when foods are fried in oil, they lose water and absorb fat, which increases their calorie content (s).

Eating a lot of them can significantly increase your calorie consumption.

2- It contains a high percentage of trans fats

Trans fats form when unsaturated fats undergo a process called hydrogenation. Food manufacturers often temper fats using high pressure and hydrogen gas to increase their shelf life and stability, but hydrogenation also occurs when oils are heated to very high temperatures during cooking.

In fact, trans fats are associated with an increased risk of many diseases, including heart disease, cancer, diabetes and obesity (s, s, s). Since fried foods are cooked in oil at very high temperatures, they are likely to contain trans fats.

Furthermore, fried foods are often cooked in vegetable or seed oils, which may contain trans fats, before heating.

3- It causes heart disease

Eating fried foods may contribute to high blood pressure, low "good" HDL cholesterol, and obesity, all of which are risk factors for heart disease (s, s, s, s).

4- You are at risk of developing diabetes

Several studies have found that eating fried foods puts you at risk of developing type 2 diabetes (s, s).

One study found that people who ate fast food more than twice a week were twice as likely to develop insulin resistance, compared to those who ate it less than once a week (s).

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5- It causes obesity

Fried foods contain more calories than their non-fried counterparts, so eating a lot of them can greatly increase your calorie intake.

Furthermore, studies suggest that trans fats in fried foods may play an important role in weight gain, as they can affect hormones that regulate appetite and fat storage (s).

6- Fried foods may contain harmful acrylamide

Animal studies suggest that dietary intake of acrylamide may increase the risk of several types of cancer (s), but more studies in humans are needed to confirm this.

What are the safer alternatives to frying?

If you are going to eat fried foods, make them yourself at home, where you can control the type of oil you use.

Liquid oils are the healthiest option, as they contain large amounts of “healthy fats” – polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats.

Olive oil, soybean oil, and canola oil are all good options. These oils are also rich in heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Do not reuse the oil when frying. Start with a new batch each time.

When you're done frying, use paper towels to soak up any excess oil from the food.

You don't have to give up fried food, but you also don't want to overdo it. Moderation and variety with any food is the key to healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle.

It is the usual consumption that can get you into trouble. And check out our previous article on the healthiest and worst oils for frying.

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