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Flaming Barbecue Meat

What can we do to cook with less fat?

Let's talk about the effects of high temperatures on fats...

One option is to heat our foods in the oven or on the grill, so the food will not be in contact with a lot of grease. It is healthier to heat tortillas on a hotplate or “comal”, instead of frying them in order to cut down on the use of lard or oil.

Another option is to use an oil spray, which can be applied directly on the skillet. This means that we can fry our food with a lot less grease.

In any case, following these recommendations can decrease the quantity of fried foods that you and your family eat. This will have a very positive effect upon your health.

The reasons why it is not healthy to eat large quantities of fried foods on a regular basis include the following:

Effects of High Temperatures on Fats...

  • At temperatures higher than 302° F, unsaturated fats (vegetable oils and margarines) modify their original chemical structure and become unhealthy.

  • At temperatures higher than 428° F, these fats are produced in greater quantities.

  • Meats and other smoked products which are heated on a charcoal grill should not be eaten regularly or in great quantities, because when the fat from the meat drips down to the charcoal, a chemical reaction occurs which forms certain chemicals which could be dangerous to our health. These chemicals come into contact with the meat being grilled, making it less healthy

“Trans” Fats Are Bad For Our Health... 

  • They promote irritation and inflammation of various organs in our body;

  • These types of fats interfere with the absorption of good fats in our body;

  • They increase “bad” or low density cholesterol (LDL) in the body  and decrease the amount of the “good” or high density cholesterol (HDL);

  • In large quantities, trans fats can interfere with the way the insulin hormone works in the body, making it less available; this is especially important in people who have diabetes

Fortunately, there are also good fats, which are very necessary for our body to function properly and to keep us healthy.


These fats can help to keep our skin healthy and also may decrease the amount of inflammatory processes in our body.


Polyunsaturated fats which are contained in many plants, as well as monounsaturated fats, contained in avocadoes and olive oils, are an example of good fats.

What are “Trans Fats” and How are They Formed?

Fats in their original form have a definite chemical structure known as “cis”. The “trans” form makes fats unhealthy, increasing one’s risk for heart disease by raising levels of "bad" or “low density lipoprotein” (LDL) cholesterol and lowering levels of "good" or “high density lipoprotein” (HDL) cholesterol.

Trans fats are produced in manufacturing processes in which hydrogen is added to make vegetable oils more stable. Trans fats are found in vegetable shortenings, some margarines, crackers, cookies, snack foods, and fried foods.

Fried Foods are Not Healthy !

Since fats increase the taste of certain foods, some people usually fry their foods, using pork lard, shortening, margarine or vegetable oils.

The problem and risk of frying foods is that intense heat affects and modifies the quality of oils and can make them become unhealthy for our body.

When oils are heated, their chemical structure is changed, making them  more difficult to digest and also encouraging the formation of unhealthy chemicals known as “ free- radicals”, which in turn, irritate our digestive system and can lead to various health problems if fried foods are eaten in large quantities and on a regular basis.

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