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Health and Fitness Blog

Valetines Day Meal

Now today is a day where many of my clients will be going out to celebrate Valentines with their other halves, but all of my Windsor Bootcamp Participants, and my Personal Training Clients will make sure they are still making healthy choices, and probably today is the day of all days where non of us want to feel bloated when we are being made to feel sexy and loved by our other halves.
So here is your guide on what to order tonight, and want to avoid at your favourite restraints and takeaways.
Takeaways are often cheap, convenient and satisfying but, unfortunately, they're not always very healthy.
Some takeaway meals can push you over your recommended daily maximum amount of salt and fat, which can lead to a variety of health problems, such as heart disease and diabetes.
Some takeaways and restaurants are making a effort to let you know how many calories are in your food and now list the amounts on their menus, which lets you opt for something with fewer calories, which is always helpful.
Below are some tips on foods to avoid and healthier options when ordering your favourite takeaway.
Fish and chips

There are lots of ways of making your trip to the chippy a healthier one. Have a portion of baked beans or mushy peas with your fish and chips. Watch out for other foods that are high in fat, such as pies and sausages.The thicker the chips the better because they absorb less fat. Try to have a smaller portion or share your chips, after all sharing is more romantic on Valentines. Ask for your fish and chips without salt – if you want some salt then add a small amount yourself, rather then then letting them go mad which they tend to do a lot!. Don't eat all the batter around your fish because it soaks up a lot of fat. If available, have fish coated in breadcrumbs as it soaks up less fat. Fish and chips that are cooked in oil at the right temperature taste better and absorb less fat. So watch out for soggy batter and chips because this is often a sign that the oil wasn't hot enough. Also be aware of buying a 330ml fizzy drink, because they tend to have about 10 teaspoons of sugar in them.
  • Try to avoid: thin-cut chips, pies such as cheese and onion pie or steak and kidney pie, jumbo sausage, and fizzy drink!
  • Healthier options: fish coated in breadcrumbs, mushy peas, thicker-cut chips without salt.
If you're having pizza, choose lower-fat toppings, such as vegetables, ham, fish and prawns. You could ask for some extra veg on your pizza to bump up your daily fruit and veg portions. But if you don't want to increase the saturated fat content and number of calories in your meal, don't ask for extra cheese. Also opt for thin crust. With pasta dishes, if you want a lower-fat option then go for a sauce that's based on tomatoes or vegetables rather than cream. If you're having a starter or a dessert then you could go for a smaller main meal such as a starter-size pasta with a side salad – Italian restaurants often serve two sizes of pasta dishes. Rather than garlic bread, which often contains a lot of butter (and is therefore high in fat), you could try bruschetta, which is a tasty ciabatta bread toasted and topped with fresh tomatoes and herbs.
  • Try to avoid: large deep-pan pizzas, pizzas with the crust stuffed with cheese, triple cheese with pepperoni pizzas, creamy pasta sauces, garlic bread.
  • Healthier options: small or medium pizza with a thin base and vegetable or lean meat topping, tomato-based pasta sauces, bruschetta.
Anything that’s battered or marked as ‘crispy’ on the menu means is deep fried. Watch out for starters such as prawn crackers and spring rolls because these are generally deep fried. Anything in batter will be high in fat. Sweet and sour pork is usually battered. Steamed dishes are the best option, but stir-fries are fine because they're usually lower in fat and include vegetables.
  • Try to avoid: sweet and sour battered pork balls with special or egg fried rice, prawn toast, spring rolls.
  • Healthier options: crab and corn soup, steamed dumplings, steamed vegetables and plain boiled rice, steamed fish, chicken chop suey, Szechuan prawns
Try to stick to stir-fried dishes or steamed dishes containing chicken, fish or vegetables instead of curries. Thai curries, such as the popular green and red curries, contain coconut milk, which is high in saturated fat. If you choose a curry, try not to eat all the sauce. Have some steamed rice with your meal instead of egg fried rice.
  • Try to avoid: fried rice, fish cakes, spring rolls, prawn crackers, satay skewers with peanut sauce and sweet and sour dishes.
  • Healthier options: clear soups such as tom yum, salads, stir-fried meat, fish or vegetable dishes, steamed seafood dishes, such as fish or mussels.
Try to avoid anything that’s creamy or deep fried. To reduce the amount of fat in your meal, choose dishes with tomato-based sauces, such as tandoori and madras, plain rice or chapatti. Also choose plenty of vegetables, including lentil side dishes (known as dhal).
  • Try to avoid: any creamy curries such as korma, passanda or masala with pilau rice, naan, bhajis, pakoras and poppadoms.
  • Healthier options: tandoori or madras with chicken, prawns or vegetables, plain rice and chapatti.
Kebab and Burgers
Donor kebabs can be high in fat. For a healthier option, go for a shish kebab, which is a skewer with whole cuts of meat or fish and usually grilled. If you’re having a burger, avoid breaded or battered chicken or fish patties, extra cheese, bacon strips and high-fat sauces such as mayonnaise. Instead, go for a regular, single-patty hamburger without mayo or cheese and have with extra salad.
  • Try to avoid: large doner kebab with mayonnaise and no salad, burgers with cheese and mayonnaise, thin-cut chips, chicken or fish patties deep fried in batter.
  • Healthier options: shish kebab with pitta bread and salad, grilled burgers made from lean fish or meat (beef or whole chicken breast) and without cheese and mayonnaise.
Have a wonderful Vday! And remember your heart isn't just for the person you love, it's for your health and a long life with your partner.