Taking Maslow’s ‘Hierarchy Of Needs’ into account, it is clearly identified that food is one of the basic necessities of man, being part of physiological needs in order to survive. Food gives us the energy we need, thus enabling us to think, move, function and prosper. Eating is an essential activity as it helps us sustain ourselves.
There is a huge palette change over the years. From the basic meals we’ve accustomed eating, we are now in an era of food transformations and innovations! From our usual burgers, we see pounds of beef patties prepared with other ingredients to come up with jaw-breaking 3 to 7 layers of monstrous versions, the mouth-watering mounds of cheese generously melted over orders of tacos, pizzas and pastas, the milkshakes with a twist, adding towers of sweets and sprinkles with other crazy toppings we haven’t seen before. With the massive influence of social media today, these innovations can easily be popularized in Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and other platforms where people tend to easily flock just to have that gastronomical experience and food posts.
Food has a direct impact to our health and well-being. In fact, some if not most people are becoming less and less attentive to the huge impact of food on our daily functioning. Everyone is becoming obsessed with fast access and instant results even on food nowadays, resulting to an increasing rate of obesity cases and unhealthy food choices in the society. As quoted from University of Rochester Medical Center “Being overweight or obese increases your chances of dying from hypertension, type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, stroke, gallbladder disease, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, respiratory problems, dyslipidemia and endometrial, breast, prostate, and colon cancers”.
If you are health conscious and you want to start practicing healthy living and mindful food choices at home, one of the basic cooking methods to reconsider and study is deep-frying.
Let’s talk about deep-frying and its cons.
What Is Deep-Frying?
Deep-frying, is a popular cooking method that has been practiced all throughout the ages worldwide, although modern deep frying using the cast iron were popularized around 19th century in the United States.
Deep-frying involves submerging the food in hot oil either using a frying pan or deep fryers with a hot fat or oil rather than the shallow oil that are used in traditional frying. Deep-frying usually is done industrially but is also practiced at home. With this hot-fat cooking method, the deep frying foods are cooked so quickly because of a very high temperature in order to come up with food that is crispy in the exterior while fluffy in the inside.
The Disadvantages of Deep-Frying
1. Not a healthy choice. If you are health-conscious, then be aware that deep-frying is not really a healthy preference. The oil used is made of lard and animal fats which has a high amount of saturated fat and cholesterol which can cause clogging of arteries, resulting in heart diseases, like strokes, heart attacks, angina pectoris also obesity, diabetes, colon cancers and others.
2. Not good for the environment. This is popular especially for commercial food strips and restaurants where deep frying produces a vast amount of waste oil. Improper waste disposal of the oil can affect the environment especially if it overflows to the sewage systems going to the different bodies of water in the community, not to mention interference with the sewage pipes and sewage treatment. While it is true that there is an increasing rate of waste oil now being recycled and processed into bio-diesel, how about the waste oil from every household who do not have the capacity to convert them into bio-diesel?
3. The hazards of deep-frying. The hot oil used in cooking is flammable, especially if set in a very high temperature for too long, thus one should really be extra careful when deep-frying.
There are cases of house fire caused by oil fire which leads to boil-over. This happens when you try to extinguish an oil fire with water causing the water to flash into steam due to the high heat of the oil, which triggers burning oil in all directions that aggravates the fire even more. Always have a non-water extinguisher, a dry powder or equip your dry fryers with automatic fire suppressions using foams around.
Aside from fire, very hot cooking oil when spilled accidentally can cause third degree burns which can be very fatal.
You can also get an injury when you accidentally place your hand on the stove or you touch the pot resulting in scalding.
4. Cleanliness and maintenance. Even if you are using a deep-fryer, chances are, oil can still platter on the surroundings of your frying area which causes such greasy splotches which is hard to clean afterwards.
Apart from that, you have to be very cautious as to where you place the hot oil away from the reach of children while cooling off to avoid scalding and burn injuries.
You also have to spend a lot of time to wait for the hot oil to cool down before you can filter the residue, which unfortunately is a messy thing to do not to mention time-consuming.
5. Deep-frying can deplete the nutritional value. There is a proper oil temperature that you have to maintain in order to keep the nutrients of the food that you are cooking. When the cooking oil is below a certain temperature, the internal moisture of the food will go against the oil; not being able to cook the inside of the food properly leading to greasy and under cooked food.
Another thing to remember is that the cooking oil especially if reused for multiple times can cause it to break down and release some compounds that if mixed with the food may be carcinogenic. Carcinogen from used oils greatly affects the liver and also hinders the body from effectively absorbing the vitamins and minerals present in the food.
Almost everything can be deep-fried. Deep fried dishes are stable household meals all throughout the globe. While it is true that it no one can resist the joy of deep-fried foods, there are underlying cons of eating such food, so be mindful!
If you are health-conscious and mindful of the calories consumed, then deep-frying may not be recommended for you.
What you eat today will eventually reflect in the status of your health and well-being later in your life so deep-frying definitely is something off the list when you are to start a healthier food preparation and fitness journey.