The Ministry of Health suggests that it is important to New Zealanders to reduce the amount of fat being consumed in the diet but it is also important to be aware of the type of fat being consumed. The following are suggestions on how to achieve these two goals:
Include the recommended servings of breads and cereals (at least six servings a day), vegetables and fruits (at least five servings a day), dairy products (at least two servings per day) and lean meat, chicken, seafood, eggs or legumes (at least one serving per day).
Choose snacks based on vegetables and fruits, breads, cereals and low-fat milk and milk products rather than high-fat snacks, e.g. potato crisps.
Trim all visible fat from meat and remove the skin from chicken.
Use less fat in cooking – grill, steam, boil or microwave as alternatives to frying foods.
When using fat, choose a vegetable oil or an oil high in monounsaturated fat such as olive, canola, or avocado oil.
Use less spread on bread and rolls or use alternatives like hummus or avocado.
Select lower-fat milk products such as reduced or low-fat milk, yoghurt, cottage cheese, or lower-fat cheese, e.g. Edam.
Eat processed meats, e.g. sausages and luncheon meat, less frequently as they are particularly high in saturated fat. Grill these meats rather than frying them so as not to add more fat to an already high-fat food.
Eat fried foods only occasionally.
When reducing fat in the diet make sure that these foods are not replaced with high-sugar foods. This especially needs to be checked when buying ‘low-fat’ foods. Check the nutrition panel to compare the fat and sugar content of the low fat and regular product.