If you like fried foods but want to stay or be healthy, eat foods that are air fried instead of foods that are deep fried in oil.
What are Air Fryers?
First and foremost, air fryers are used to cook fried foods that are crispy and chewy. However, unlike using oil for frying, air fryers use air, heated from 300 to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, that circulates around the food. Now, this circulating hot air cooks the outside of food first. As a result, air frying helps create the same crispy brown outer coating as in traditional deep-fried foods, while the inside of the food is soft just like with deep-fried foods. Especially noteworthy, air fryers accomplish this without the need to use high-fat and high-calorie oils in the cooking process.
In fact, simply using just one tablespoon of cooking oil instead of multiple cups, lets you get the same results as you would with a deep oil fryer but with only a small fraction of the fat and calories. Furthermore, researchers have shown that air fryers, using heated air containing fine oil droplets, helps to take the moisture out of the foods. As a result, you get food that has similar characteristics to fried foods, though with significantly lower levels of fat and hence calories.
Also, like many other cooking methods, air-frying triggers a chemical reaction, called the Maillard effect, that improves the color and flavor of air-fried food.
Most of all, air fried foods have the same taste, texture, and golden-brown color as foods fried in oil, but without all the fat and calories.
What Kind of Foods can Air Fryers be Used for?
Air fryers can be used for cooking chicken fingers, chicken nuggets, chicken wings, empanadas, vegetables such as okra and baby carrots, bananas, onion rings, French fries, cheese sticks, and fish sticks.
Regrettably, simply air frying fish creates substances that can cause heart disease, hardening of arteries, cancer, and other diseases. In addition, air-frying significantly reduces omega-3 fatty acids which help lower blood pressure and raise “good” HDL cholesterol levels to protect the heart. So, to avoid these bad consequences, make sure to add fresh parsley, chives, or a mixture of the two to the fish.
Other foods you can cook with air fryers include meat, bacon, boiled eggs, egg rolls, pastries, ravioli, potato chips, personal pizza, doughnuts, chopped potatoes, frozen cauliflower, and zucchini slices.
On the other hand, air fryers are not good for battered foods, cake donuts, and foods with loose seasonings, fresh cheese, most greens, raw vegetables, and raw rice.
Some of the benefits of air frying include the following.
- First, air frying is healthier than frying in oil.
- Second, air fried foods reduce calorie consumption by 70 to 80 percent.
- Third, there are claims that air fried foods contain 75 percent less fat than deep fried foods. For example, some recipes use 3 cups of oil for deep frying, while air fried foods use only 1 tablespoon of oil. Consequently, deep frying uses 50 times more oil than air fryers. This reduced consumption of oil has a big impact on your health because reducing ingestion of vegetable oil significantly reduces risk of heart diseases and inflammation.
- Fourth, this reduced oil consumption results in less fat ingested. Now, each gram of fat has 9 calories, which is twice as many calories per gram of protein or carbohydrates. Consequently, when you cut back on calories ingested, you start to lose weight.
- Next, air frying is safer because there is no container with scalding oil. So, there is no risk of spilling, splashing, or coming in contact with the hot oil.
- Also, air frying eliminates the unwanted aroma of fried foods in your home.
- In addition, an air fryer cooks food in minutes and is perfect for anyone who is constantly on the go with little time to prepare meals.
- Furthermore, air fryers let you cook multiple dishes at the same time.
- Meanwhile, some air fryers have a built-in integrated air filter that eliminates unwanted vapors and food odors from spreading around your home.
- Next, air fryers are easy to clean, since all the removable parts of the air fryer are generally dishwasher safe.
- Most of all air fryers reduce risk of cancer. Indeed, a study showed that air frying lowers the amount of acrylamide in fried potatoes by 90 percent when compared with deep-frying. Now, acrylamide is formed by carbohydrate rich foods during high heat cooking like frying. Regrettably, acrylamide is thought to be a carcinogen that has been linked to development of cancer, such as kidney, endometrial, and ovarian cancer.
- Finally, cleaning up is easy.
Some of the drawback of air fryers are described below.
- First, small air fryers have small baskets which restricts the amount of food that can be cooked.
- Second, when air fryers with small baskets are filled with food, all the food may not cook evenly. Consequently, food exposed to the hot air may feel crunchy while food on the inside may feel soggy.
- Third, while air fried food may feel crunchy; it does not have the exact look or feel in the mouth as food that is deep fried in oil. While, both air and deep oil fried foods have a similar color and moisture content, they have different texture and sensory qualities.
- Finally, air fryers can cook one to three pounds of food at a time. As a result, they are good for small families.
So, if you are really into fried foods but want to reduce your waistline and lose weight start eating air fried foods instead of foods deep fried in oil.