Most people know about the bad effects of fried foods because of many health articles and studies. The process of frying is known to be extremely unhealthy and toxic. But the question is, why is fried food bad for us? What happens to food during the process of frying, that makes it less healthy than others that are boiled, sautéed, baked, etc.?
Fried foods increase your fat content
In a study, designed to determine the process of cooking that brings maximum content of fat in the diet, the processes tested were baking, sautéing and deep frying. Not surprisingly, the process of roasting produces a small amount of fat while the frying process is close to the maximum. The situation gets worse when you fry foods with dough around them, as this food tends to take more oil or cooking fat in.
Most restaurants tend to fry food in butter, margarine or hydrogenated oils that contain trans fats. Frying food in oil leads to increased content of saturated fat in the diet. Potatoes are usually fried in hydrogenated vegetable oils and they are tied with trans-fats, which can lead to several health problems, including pre-cancerous conditions.
Foods that are fried in vegetable oils such as corn, safflower, soybean and rapeseed are also inappropriate, because these oils are susceptible to heat. Polyunsaturated fatty chains contained in these oils tend to become rancid when exposed to high temperatures and may result in the release of free radicals in the body, causing inflammation and other unhealthy reactions. Fried food is bad for you if you want to lose weight. The process of frying adds extra calories to your diet.
Fried foods can produce toxic compounds
It was found that several fried foods contain traces of a toxic chemical called acrylamide, which may cause cancer in the body. High levels of this chemical are found in deep fried foods like French fries, processed meats and even in roasted coffee at temperatures higher than 120 degrees Celsius.
Is there a healthy way to fry foods?
It was found that food fried in coconut oil, is much less harmful than those fried in hydrogenated vegetable oils. Coconut oil remains stable even at high temperatures.
Frying food in olive oil is a relatively healthy choice. Olive oil is a saturated fat and is a source of beneficial fatty acids such as Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, found in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats.