MANNA’s New Menu

Posted on: August 3rd, 2017 by manna
Penne with Meatballs Waffles with Fruit Salmon

 

This fall, MANNA’s clients may notice a few changes to their meals. After more than a year of drafting, planning, and perfecting, MANNA is taking our already delicious food to the next level by rolling out a new menu.

MANNA’s menu could be described as either an art or a science, depending on who you ask. In the nutrition wing of MANNA’s office, if you ask about our menu you’ll hear about caloric needs, macro and micro nutrients, and the technical nutrition standards we are committed to meeting to ensure that our meals will help our clients to heal. But if you talk to Eric Gantz, MANNA’s Director of Operations and culinary guru, it’s a different story. Eric talks about what it feels like to sit down for one of our meals. He talks about how it feels to have a piece of meat you cut with a fork and a knife, to have a dessert you look forward to and a hot breakfast to wake up to. These two perspectives meet in our kitchen, and together create a menu that is meticulously calculated for nutritional value, and crafted to be delicious, appealing, and fulfilling. Sitting down to a MANNA meal doesn’t feel like another step of treatment. It feels like the reprieve, a treat and a comfort in a challenging time. Our new menu makes sure of that.

To begin the process of creating the new menu, our nutrition staff, led by Nicole Laverty, RD, LDN, Senior Manager of Nutrition and Client Services, performed a comprehensive review of our previous menu. They calculated the daily caloric intake of a client who eats every meal MANNA brings each week, reviewed the amount of fat, protein, sodium, potassium, and calcium in the diet, and set goals for an optimal balance of nutrients.

On the other side of MANNA’s kitchen from the nutrition wing is Eric’s office, where a very different planning process was under way. Eric took clients’ feedback to heart, and sought to create the menu that our clients would take comfort in and enjoy. He wanted more of what he calls “center of the plate options,” which are those hearty, fork-and-knife meals that just make you feel good. If you listen to Eric talk about MANNA’s meals, you’ll notice that he’s the only one at MANNA who doesn’t always use the word “clients” to refer to the people we serve. He often refers to them as “guests,” a subtle hint at the way he thinks of our food; as a long-time restaurant chef and owner, Eric writes MANNA’s recipes as he would for patrons. In fact, every new MANNA recipe has been on the menu of a restaurant of his. Each meal that MANNA delivers begins with this care, with this pride, of a chef who values above all else providing a delicious meal to guests.
MANNA’s menu is on a six-week cycle, with no entrée appearing more than once. After meeting with the nutrition team and taking stock of the improvements they wanted to see, Eric wrote the menu by putting together recipes for each meal type (breakfast, lunch and dinner), in groups of 7 – for a week’s worth of meals – and adapting them in subtle ways that would help to meet nutrition standards.

This menu draft then went to the nutrition team. Using a program called Nutritionist Pro, MANNA dietitians and dietetic interns entered each recipe to assess nutritional qualities. This program evaluated each meal, and also each day’s meals and each week’s meals, to see the balance provided by the full menu. Then our dietitians relayed to Eric which meals were problematic and which weeks had balance issues, sending Eric back to the drawing board to make the necessary changes.

This evaluation and revision period was long and painstaking. The two sides of this process – nutrition and culinary – were uncompromising, in the best sense of the term. Neither would give up their commitment to creating the absolute best menu for our clients, and as a result, it took nearly a year to go through each individual meal, each day’s menu, and eventually the full six-week cycle. While at MANNA we like to say that everything fits, meaning that our nutrition and culinary teams can modify any recipe to fit our clients’ health needs, the reality is that there are some meals that simply wouldn’t work. Eric uses the example of an Asian inspired dish he wanted to include with a teriyaki sauce. There was just no way to create a teriyaki or soy-based sauce that could stay within our sodium guidelines, while still being proud of the taste of the meal. So rather than compromising the flavor, these unworkable meals were removed, and replaced with a different meal entirely. When this process finished, MANNA could almost call the menu ready.

The only remaining step was to create the modifications we use to tailor each clients’ diet to their health needs. Some of these modifications were easy; the pureed and soft food diets, for example, add a step to adjust texture but do not change recipes. On the other hand, the menu for a client with renal failure has more substantial changes. Using the nutrient profiles for each recipe already collected in Nutritionist Pro, MANNA’s nutrition team highlighted what needed to be changed from the standard diet to make it appropriate for a renal failure patient, and used substitutions or meal swaps to perfect it. After going through this process for the rest of our modifications, the menu was ready.

After more than a year of work, MANNA’s new menu is ready. Beginning with a gradual roll out, clients will begin to open their delivered meals to find the new, delicious recipes. As an added bonus, MANNA will now be able to print nutrition labels to be included with clients’ meals, so that clients can see the nutrient contents and learn how to use nutrition labels to make healthy choices. Each recipe, in its final form, is tested first in a batch for 250 servings, and then produced and packaged, as always, by the hundreds of caring volunteers who come to MANNA each week. They are then delivered by MANNA’s tireless distribution staff, with smiles and well wishes, to each client’s home, to provide nourishment, strength, health, and most of all, enjoyment and comfort.

Contributed by Kelly McGlynn

August is Family Meals Month

Posted on: August 3rd, 2017 by manna

Studies show that when families eat together, meals are likely to be more nutritious.  In fact, kids who eat regularly with their families are less likely to snack on unhealthy foods and are more likely to eat fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Beyond health and nutrition, family meals provide a valuable opportunity for children and parents to reconnect. When adults, children and teenagers eat together children do better in school, have fewer behavioral problems, and communication improves. When is the last time you sat down and ate a meal with your family? If you cannot remember, August is a great time to start having a meal with your family as often as you can. Check out the following tips to make family meals happen at your house.

Tips on How to have more Family Meals:

  1. Schedule Family Meals – To plan more family meals, look over the calendar and choose a time when everyone can be there. Figure out which obstacles are getting in the way of family meals and see if there are ways to work around them.
  2. Even if it is only once a week, make it a habit to have family meals together. You can then work your way up to 2 to 3 times a week.
  3. Don’t forget that breakfast and lunch are meals as well; there are no rules that say family meals should only happen in the evening.
  4. Prepare Meals Ahead of Time (It is important to make a shopping list and make time to go to the grocery store so you have foods on hand to create meals.)
  5. Try doing some prep work for meals on the weekend to get ready for the week ahead. On a night when you have extra time, cook double and put one meal in the freezer so there is a backup plan for busy nights.
  6. Remember that a meal at home does not have to be complicated or take a long time!
  7. Involve Kids at Family Meals
  8. Younger kids can put plates on the table, pour beverages, or fold napkins.
  9. Older kids can get ingredients, wash produce, mix, and stir. You could even have your teens be the cook for a night and you could be their helper in the kitchen.

During mealtime, make your time at the table pleasant and enjoy being together as a family. Remember to keep your interactions positive at the table. Ask your kids about their days and tell them about yours. Give everyone a chance to talk. If you cannot remember the last time you sat down for a family meal, take the time this August to start a family tradition of eating together and eating better.

 

A Lesson in Leadership

Posted on: August 2nd, 2017 by manna

In our continuing effort to be an institution for training future leaders in the field of nutrition, MANNA is hosting a fellow from the University of Pennsylvania’s Fox Leadership Program.

Meet Sam Follansbee, a Senior at Penn. Sam is studying philosophy, politics, and economics, with concentrations in public policy and governance, and plans to attend law school after graduation. Sam, a linebacker for Penn’s varsity football team, serves as President of Penn’s Student Athlete Advisory Committee and heads the Penn chapter of Uplifting Athletes, a national nonprofit that uses the platform of athletics to raise money and awareness for rare disease research. We’ve been very grateful to Sam for all his hard work this summer and would like to share his experience in his words.

This past spring, the Fox Leadership Program offered me a summertime fellowship opportunity with MANNA. The Fox program engages in various civic initiatives, including the sponsorship of fellowships for Penn undergraduates and recent alumni. The program encourages students to consider the lessons in leadership and life modeled by Robert A. Fox: find your passions; put people first; and succeed the right way. After working for, and learning from MANNA and their staff, it has become clear to me that there is no greater embodiment of these lessons than the endeavor that is MANNA and their food as medicine movement.

Since I began my time with MANNA in June, I’ve had the privilege to work on projects ranging from drafting, disseminating and analyzing data from MANNA’s Client Satisfaction survey, to aggregating the number of meals and clients MANNA has served over the years based on their geographic location. The latter project led me to discover that, in the last decade, MANNA has cooked and delivered over 7.5 million meals to individuals fighting life-threatening diseases. I hope my time at MANNA will help them to continue to effectively improve the health of the communities they serve through their medically appropriate meals and nutrition services.

August’s Healthy Recipe

Posted on: August 1st, 2017 by manna

Spinach Lasagna

Just writing about this recipe makes me hungry! It is a tasty way to package nutrient-rich spinach between calcium-rich cheeses; lasagna noodles made with whole grains; and healthy, hearty tomato pasta sauce. Any extra lasagna keeps well; heat for another meal within the next 3 to 4 days. So, go ahead and make the whole recipe, even if you are cooking for just a few people. Serve with a crisp, mixed green salad.

  • 9 lasagna noodles, preferably made with whole grain
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 6-8 cups fresh spinach (amount need not be exact)
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 (16 oz.) carton fat-free or low-fat ricotta cheese
  • 3 cups shredded cheese (Mozzarella is nice — however other cheeses also will work. I used a Swiss cheese as this is what was in the house at the time)
  • 1 jar (24 oz.) spaghetti sauce, divided

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Prepare the lasagna noodles according to package directions. Don’t overcook them as they will cook more during the baking process. To keep them from sticking together while you’re getting the other ingredients ready, rinse them under cold water and lay on a cookie sheet, with layers separated by plastic wrap or foil.
  3. As you’re preparing the noodles, start assembling the other ingredients. Begin by heating olive oil over a medium-low heat in a large skillet. Add spinach to the pan in stages; turn leaves until they wilt. Add more spinach; repeat process until all of the spinach is added. Remove spinach from skillet, place in a bowl, and set aside to cool.
  4. Blend eggs and ricotta cheese in a food processor or blender until smooth. Transfer to another bowl and stir in 2 cups of the shredded cheese. Then, mix in the spinach.
  5. Assemble the ingredients in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray:
    1. Layer 1: 1 cup of the spaghetti sauce, 3 lasagna noodles, and half the ricotta mixture.
    2. Layer 2: Repeat layer 1
    3. Layer 3: Top with remaining 3 noodles, spaghetti sauce and the remaining 1 cup shredded cheese.
  6. Bake about 35 to 45 minutes or until top is lightly browned and a food thermometer inserted into the lasagna registers 165 degrees F. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Cook’s Notes:

One 10-oz bag of fresh spinach equals approximately 5-6 cups of leaves. If you wish to use frozen spinach, substitute 1 package (10 oz.) frozen chopped spinach, that has been thawed and well drained.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention give this method for washing fresh spinach: “Spinach grows in sandy soil, so wash it thoroughly to get rid of the grainy, sandy particles. Make sure to tear off the stem. Separate the leaves, and place them in a large bowl of water. Gently wash leaves, and let the sand drift to the bottom of the bowl. Remove leaves from the water, and repeat the process with fresh water until the leaves are clean. If spinach is to be eaten raw, dry it completely by using a salad spinner or by blotting it with paper towels.”

Though this recipe is made without salt, as additional way to lower sodium is to use a no-salt-added spaghetti or pasta sauce or make your own. You can make a simple sauce by mixing together 1 (15 oz.) can no-salt-added tomato sauce, 1 (15 oz.) can no-salt added diced tomatoes; and 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning or to taste.

July is National Grilling Month!

Posted on: July 1st, 2017 by manna

The summer months are a busy time for hosting barbecues and grilling up your favorite foods.  However, there are some very important food safety tips to keep in mind when planning your next get-together. 

When food shopping for your event, be sure to buy perishable foods last to reduce the amount of time they sit at room temperature. After purchase, always keep raw meat from other items by bagging them separately to protect against cross-contamination. When you get home, be sure to portion out the meat that you intend to cook that evening and freeze the rest if you do not plan on cooking poultry and ground meat in 1 or 2 days and all other meats within 4 to 5 days.

Always marinade your food in the refrigerator, not on a countertop. Never marinade anything longer than 24 hours and discard excess marinade. Make sure your hands, utensils, cutting boards, and surfaces are freshly washed and cleaned before you begin to prepare any food. To prevent foodborne illness, never use the same plate/platter or utensils for raw and cooked meats. Also, do not use the same cutting board for raw meats and other food items, such as fruits or vegetables, without cleaning with warm, soapy water.

Make sure to cook foods to their respective temperatures to eliminate harmful bacteria (beef, pork, lamb, veal, chops, and roasts = 150˚ F. Ground beef, pork, lamb, and veal = 160˚F. Poultry = 165˚). The best way to test the temperature is to use a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat.  Only serve the meat when it has reached its proper cooking temperature.  After all of the food is prepared and set out for guests, make sure that it does not sit out for longer than two hours and, once it reaches that two hour time period, place it in the fridge as leftovers or discard the food. 

By following these food safety grilling tips, you will ensure that you and your guests will have delicious and safe grilling experience.   

 

Healthy Grilled Chicken-and-Rice Foil Packs

Total: 40 min

Yield: 4 servings

Level: Easy

Ingredients

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • One 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup converted rice
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 2 tablespoons pickled jalapeno slices, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced

Directions

  • Special equipment: Four 8-inch disposable foil pie pans and heavy duty foil
  • Prepare a grill for medium heat.
  • Put the chicken, beans, rice, salsa, pickled jalapenos, tomato paste, chili powder, turmeric and 3/4 teaspoon salt in a large bowl and toss to combine. Divide the chicken-rice mixture evenly among the pie pans, spreading it out in an even layer. Pour 1/2 cup of chicken broth into each pie pan.
  • Cover each pan tightly with foil. Put the pans on the grill, close the grill lid and cook for 20 minutes. Remove from the grill and let rest for a few minutes.
  • Carefully remove the foil from each pan (hot steam will escape). The liquid should be absorbed, the rice tender and the chicken cooked through. Sprinkle each with some scallions.

 

June Nutrition Tip

Posted on: June 1st, 2017 by manna

June is Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Month! Start improving your diet this month by adding fruits and vegetables to your meals. They are packed with essential vitamins and minerals that can help reduce your risk of developing cancer and chronic illnesses as well as a long list of other benefits including a stronger immune system, strong bones, healthy skin and hair, and increased energy. Fruits and vegetables are also high in fiber, which is an indigestible carbohydrate that promotes gut health and regularity that helps you feel fuller longer. An added benefit of increasing your fruit and vegetable intake is weight control not only because the fiber will keep you fuller in between meals to reduce snacking, but they can replace portions of calorie dense foods such as grains and meats in your meals to provide the same volume and satisfaction for fewer calories.

To get the most out of your fresh fruits and vegetables, pay attention to buying and storage guidelines to make sure you are consuming them at their peak freshness to get the full potential of their vitamin and mineral content. It is important to know which fruits continue to ripen after being picked and which do not as unripe fruit does not offer the same taste or nutritional benefits. After picking your fruit, make sure to store it properly as some are best kept refrigerated while others should be stored at room temperature; you can go to Storing Fresh Fruits and Vegetables for Best Flavor for a list to hang on your refrigerator. If being stored in a refrigerator, keep produce in a perforated plastic bag to reduce the growth of mold and bacteria and separate fruits from vegetables utilizing the crisper drawers. Fruits produce ethylene gas and can shorten the life of vegetables, and vegetables produce odors that can be absorbed by fruits and affect their quality.

A great source for delicious and fresh fruits and vegetables is your local farmer’s market where you will be able to find locally grown produce. If you participate in SNAP, every $5 of food stamps spent at a participating farmer’s market will result in $2 of Philly Food Bucks to use towards more fresh fruits and vegetables. Philly Food Bucks can be redeemed at The Food Trust’s farmer’s markets and other sites that sell local fruits and vegetables across Philadelphia as well as some participating markets in Pittsburgh, Reading, and Norristown. There are 22 markets in Philadelphia to help neighborhoods that typically lack access to healthy foods. To find your local market and the day and time of operation, visit The Food Trust’s Farmers Markets.

 

Spinach, Strawberry, & Pecan Salad Recipe:

Add grilled chicken to this salad for a protein and flavor boost!

Click to enlarge

 

Ask a Dietitian

Posted on: May 30th, 2017 by manna

Q: How does the nutritional value of frozen, canned, and fresh vegetables compare to each other?

A: Vegetables are primarily available in 3 ways of purchasing. The nutritional value of frozen, canned, and fresh vegetables are very similar yet mildly different, yet there are pros and cons to each type of vegetable for purchasing. Ultimately it depends on your lifestyle when it comes to storing, preparing, and cooking meals. It is recommend to eat 2-3 cups of vegetables a day.

Vegetables Pros Cons
Fresh -Full of vitamin & minerals 

-Versatile in cooking & preparing

-Perishable & short shelf life

-Seasonal

-Expensive

Frozen -Harvested fresh & flash frozen to preserve nutrients

-Easy to cook and prepare

-Store up to 6 mo. in freezer

-Less waste compared to fresh

 

-Vegetables with a high water content do not freeze well & are not available for purchase

-Some frozen varieties are packed with a seasoning mix or sauce that  contains extra calories & sodium

-Texture change

Canned  

-Pasteurized for a longer shelf life

-Easy to cook & prepare

-Cheaper in price

-Allows the availability to consume veggies all year long

-Contains added Salt & Sodium for preserving

-Heat from pasteurization may decrease vitamin & mineral content

– Texture & flavor change

 

If you have been told by a Doctor or Registered Dietitian that you need to watch your salt or sodium intake, then frozen or fresh vegetables may be a better option for you.

*Tip: To reduce the sodium content of canned vegetables, drain the liquid from the inside of the can and rinse the vegetables with water. Or look for ‘low-sodium’ versions.

Frozen vegetables are becoming more popular because of their freezer shelf life and ease of cooking by steaming in the microwave.

*Tip: Add fresh or frozen vegetables such as broccoli florets into a microwave safe bowl with lid and cook for 3 minutes for perfectly steamed veggies for you next meal.

Purchase fresh vegetables in season or in bulk quantities. When vegetables are in season, they are cost efficient and last longer. If you purchase vegetables in bulk you can always freeze or can fresh veggies at home using the food safe techniques for them to last longer.

Vegetables come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and ways to purchase them. And if you are feeling up to it, you can always grow your own! Overall, it does not matter how you have them, it is best to always eat your veggies!

May Nutrition Tip

Posted on: May 4th, 2017 by manna

National Herb Week is celebrated during the first week of May. This week reminds us that herbs and spices are an easy way to add delicious flavor to foods without adding sugars or sodium. Even better? Many herbs are easy to grow at home. All you need is a container with drainage for excess water and a window ledge that gets at least 4 hours of sunlight per day.  

Herbs are an excellent choice for cooking because they create great flavors and add antioxidants and vitamins to foods. Both fresh and dried herbs can impart nutrients to homemade meals.  If you’re interested in creating your own indoor herb garden, consider starting with some of these herbs that are known for being easier to grow.

Mint: Peppermint is a great choice because it can be made into tea and added to beverages for a refreshing touch. Mint is known for growing wildly, so make sure to plant it in its own pot or its sprawling roots will steel nutrients from the soil form other plants.

Parsley: Parsley can do well with only 4 hours of full sunlight and is a staple herb in many cuisines.

Lemongrass: Lemongrass can easily be grown from a stalk you buy at the grocery store. Place it in a glass with 2 inches of water; once the herbs are two inches long, transfer to a pot with moist potting soil.

Oregano: Fresh oregano is delicious, and you can dry your home-grown oregano and chop it for the even stronger oregano taste we often associate with Italian food. Oregano needs plenty of sunlight and should be kept in potting soil that should stay moist but not soaking wet. 

Meet Dito van Reiserberg – also known as – Martha Graham Cracker

Posted on: April 21st, 2017 by manna

We are so excited to have Martha Graham Cracker returning to the Forrest Theatre stage as host for Shut Up & Dance for the second year in a row. Dito van Reiserberg, the genius behind Martha, sat down to share some of his memories and insights of the evening. 

 

 

Favorite Memory

One year we did “Cold Hearted Snake” by Paula Abdul. If you haven’t seen the music video, you should. We had either a ladder or an actual scaffolding. And there are all these dancers, taking their shirt off and writhing on this enormous scaffolding. It’s very funny. And sexy.

Another year I did “Tiny Dancer” with Abby Mentzer.  And I’m tall – you know, especially in my heels I’m about 6’7. And she’s not a very tall dancer. There’s a part in Tiny Dancer that goes “tiny dancer in my hand,” and so I put out my hand and she put her little toe shoe into my hand. It was very fun.

 

How did you get involved?

My boyfriend is Matthew Neenan, Choreographer in Residence, who was part of Pennsylvania Ballet. And so I know the Pennsylvania Ballet crowd through him. He was part of some of the very early Shut Up & Dances. And that gave him his very first choreographic opportunity. Now that’s what he does for a living! In terms of something that creates an unintended result, a lot of dancers test the waters choreographers. And Matthew he did it several years in a row. We were like – you actually know how to choreograph! You should do it! And then he did it. I don’t know that he would be where is he is right now without Shut Up & Dance.

Nic Stuccio, who founded Fringe Arts, he was one of the co-founders. I want to say that Shut Up & Dance was a thing that allowed him to begin to cut his teeth organizationally as well. That created an impact allowing him to go off and make the Fringe Festival. So Shut Up & Dance has created a lot of opportunities, and has had an enormous impact.

When Michaela Majoun wanted to pass on the [Shut Up & Dance Host] torch, they were like – you like to talk and be ridiculous in front of people. Why don’t you do it? And so I said “okay!” You really can’t argue with the worthiness of the cause.

 

Could you describe Shut Up & Dance for those who have never been?

The evening has funny dances – the opening number is usually really ridiculous, and might have something to do with current events. But then there are pieces that are quite serious, or comedic, or uncategorizable. But they’re all new pieces of dance.

The tradition is the last dance before the ending is the Dying Swan. Which is a tribute to those we’ve lost, and it’s a beautiful thing to watch a ballerina do. It says ‘this is the heart of the ballet community giving itself to this worthy cause.’ So I feel that no matter how fun or ridiculous or goofy the evening is, there’s always an underlying thread of ‘let’s remember why we’re all here.’ It’s really moving.

Ask a Dietitian: Cooking Oils

Posted on: April 18th, 2017 by manna

Q: What’s the healthiest oil to use for high heat cooking, like for pan frying, wok cooking or under a broiler?

 

MANNA Registered Dietitian: What a great question! But before I give you the actual answer… I will break it down as to why certain oils are the healthiest and best to use for occasions of high heat cooking. This is because different types of oils, which are also called ‘fats’ have different heating and cooking temperatures.

There are generally 4 different types of fats/oils:

Types of Fats Sources of Oils Health Effects
Trans

(TFA)

Shortening

Hydrogenated Vegetable oil

Margarine

 

 

Raises laboratory values, such as LDL (bad cholesterol)

Lowers HDL (good cholesterol)

-Increases risk of heart disease & stroke

 

Saturated

(SFA)

 

 

Animal sources:

Butter

Lard

Animal fats & bi-products

Plant based sources:

Coconut oil

Palm & Palm kernel oil

 

 

 

Raises Total Cholesterol & LDL (bad cholesterol)

 

-Primarily from animal sources

-Solid at room temperature

 

Mono-Unsaturated

(MUFA)

 

 

Olive oil

Canola oil

Peanut oil

Avocado oil

Walnut oil

 

 

-Plant based source

Lowers lab values such as Total Cholesterol, Triglycerides, and LDL

-Liquid at room temperature, solid when chilled

Poly-Unsaturated

(PUFA)

 

 

Soybean oil

Corn oil

Canola oil

Sunflower oil

Safflower oil

Flaxseed oil

 

Lowers LDL (bad cholesterol)

Raises HDL (good cholesterol)

 

The healthiest oils are those that are high in MUFA and PUFA, such as olive oil and safflower oil. These types of fats can help lower your risk of heart disease when used in place of SFA and TFA. Replacing your cooking oils that are high in SFA with MUFA or PUFA oils can help lower blood cholesterol levels and improve lipid profiles.

In regards to cooking with oils/fats, not all are the same, just as they are different structurally. When cooking with oil there is something called a “Smoke Point.” A smoke point is when the oil reaches a heated temperature and it will start to produce smoke and even combust. The nutrients in the oil break down from the high heat, creating a rancid smell and darker color.

 

 

 

 

To answer the question- healthiest oil for HIGH heat cooking is ….

Heat Range Temperature Range Oils
Low Heat 200° – 300° Flaxseed oil

Walnut oil

Extra Virgin Olive oil

 

Medium Heat 300° – 400°  

Olive oil

Canola oil

Corn oil

 

High Heat 400° – 500°  

 

Sunflower oil

Safflower oil

Soybean oil

Peanut oil

Sesame oil

Avocado
oil

 

 

 

BUT, remember- Fat is Fat! All fats are 9 calories per gram. So, 1 tablespoon is a serving size of oil, (which looks like a half-dollar or poker chip size in a pan) is equivalent to 14.3 grams.

14.3g x 9 kcals/g = 128 calories per 1 tablespoon of cooking oil. Though, fat is necessary and needed in a healthy diet, all fats/oil should be used in moderation.

– Brittany McCauley, RD, LDN

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The Steven Korman
Nutrition Center

420 North 20th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19130
T: 215.496.2662
E: info@mannapa.org

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