Tips for a healthy hot pot
Friday, 14 December 2018
As the weather cools down, it’s our favourite time of year for Hot Pot! Whether with family, friends or colleagues, this richly flavoured, soup-based meal of fresh ingredients is a crowd favorite, but is it good for your body too?
OF COURSE! Hot pot can certainly be healthy, provided you choose your ingredients, base soup and sauces carefully to avoid an overdose of sodium, saturated fats, and carbohydrates in your meal.
Follow these 7 rules:
- Use a light soup base for your hot pot
Go for clear or light-flavoured soup such as mushroom and cabbage tofu soup for a healthy hot pot. Buy only low-sodium chicken or vegetable soup stock. And avoid drinking the broth.
- Choose lean proteins over processed versions
Choose fish, seafood, lean pork, and chicken over internal organs and processed fish balls, meatballs, and cuttlefish balls, which are high in sodium, saturated fats, and chemical preservatives. Also set aside an appropriate portion to eat and limit yourself to that amount! Quantity matters.
- Go easy on carbohydrates
Avoid adding rice or noodles to a hot pot meal. You risk piling up calories with these refined carbohydrates. Choose instead options like Konjac bows (6 pieces only 15 calories) or soba (buckwheat) noodles are higher in protein and fiber.
- Add more high-fibre vegetables to your hot pot
Fill your hot pot with carrots, cabbage, spinach, mushrooms, watercress, bak choy and choy sum.
- Choose light dipping sauces
Go for light dipping sauces such as fresh cut chillies with soya sauce, minced garlic, vinegar sauce instead of sambal, deep-fried garlic, and oil-based sauces.
- Watch out for increased nitrite levels in hot pot broth
Repeated boiling of the hot pot broth for more than 90 minutes may increase nitrite levels, so set a time limit.
- Eat slowly
The brain takes about 20 minutes to register you are full so eat slowly and chew thoroughly to prevent overeating.
Have a great upcoming festive season and remember moderation is key!