For the 69% of Americans aged 20 and older who are overweight or obese, eating a healthier diet can be difficult because it means sacrificing a lot of hearty and flavorful foods. Corned beef is one of the many delicious foods that are usually on the "do-not-eat" list. If you're really craving a taste, here are 3 ways you can make corned beef a healthier option.
Get Rid of the Fat
A serving of corned beef is equivalent to one thin slice, which contains 3.99 grams of fat or 6% of the recommended daily value. Getting rid of as much fat as possible is crucial for those on a diet, especially since it's easy to eat more than one serving of corned beef in just one sitting. To reduce the amount of fat in corned beef, you should:
- Purchase corned beef made from lean meat only. Corned beef is generally made from fatter cuts of brisket, but there are many butchers and grocery stores offering corned beef made with leaner cuts of meat.
- Trim off the fat. Even corned beef made from leaner cuts of beef will have remnants of fat along the edges. Take time to trim off and discard any fat you can get your hands on.
- Steam the corned beef or boil it in water. Although the corned beef may already be cut, you can still place it in a steamer or boil it in water for short periods of time. This will melt any remaining fat stored in the meat.
Lower Salt Content
Eating foods high in salt may have a positive correlation to weight gain and fat levels in your body. Some studies have suggested that salt increases water retention, increases thirst, enhances taste buds causing individuals to overeat and affects fat cell activity to encourage growth. The problem with corned beef is that it contains a lot of salt. Even the low-salt alternatives still contain a fair amount and can negatively impact your weight. You can get a lot of the salt out by:
- Placing the corned beef in a bowl of water overnight and letting the salt seep out through osmosis. This does take some time. Depending on the amount of salt in the beef, you may have to let it sit even longer.
- Boiling the corned beef in water. This is essentially the same as placing the corned beef in a bowl of water overnight; however, the results are more immediate. This is the recommended solution if you are going to be eating the corned beef within the same day.
Pick Firm Cuts that Are Not Too Pink
The color of the corned beef when you buy it is important. Although a beautiful, bright pink color may look more appetizing, the pink indicates high levels of nitrates and chemical preservatives. Although all corned beef will contain traces of preservatives, as preservatives prevent the growth of bacteria, too much preservative can stall weight loss attempts.
In addition, many preservatives, like nitrites and nitrates, have been linked to cancer. It's best to choose brands with corned beef that are less pink in general, as it means that there are fewer preservatives. The meat should also be firm.
Just because you're on a diet, it doesn't mean you can't enjoy corned beef from a quality supplier like City Foods Inc/Bea's Best every once in a while. If you implement the tips recommended above, you can easily reduce the amount of fat, salt and nitrates, which will have a positive impact on your diet. The journey to weight loss does not always have to be difficult, but do remember that you should consume corned beef in moderation. Make sure that you don't exceed the recommended serving size.