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We can all agree that Chinese food is delicious, right?
Whether it's egg rolls or dumplings, you just can't go wrong with those sweet and salty flavors.
This probably won't surprise you, but Chinese food also happens to be very big business.
According to a survey by the National Restaurant Association, one third of Americans eat Chinese food at least once a month.
Of course, when you're in a rush and ordering takeout, it's not so easy to make smart nutritional choices.
Unfortunately, you should probably steer clear of fried rice if you want to watch your calories and eat healthier.
To state the incredibly obvious, the main component of the dish is white rice.
Rice doesn't have much fiber, and it tends to make you feel particularly satisfied on its own.
It's also typically drowned in soy sauce, which adds loads of sodium.
That's nothing to say nothing of the fact that it's fried in oil.
Apparently, there are several reasons why fried rice might lead to weight gain.
According to Livestrong, "Including higher-fat meats [to fried rice] also increases fat content, especially if the meats have been deep-fried prior to stir frying."
A one cup serving of fried rice contains about seven grams of fat and a 460 milligrams of sodium.
But we all know that one measly cup of fried rice just won't cut it when you're in the mood for Chinese.
Unfortunately, a typical four-cup standard serving means you're looking at 28 grams of fat and 1,840 milligrams of sodium.
Meanwhile, the daily recommended intake is no more than 2,300 milligrams of sodium, and no more than 65 grams of fat.
If you absolutely insist on eating fried rice, perhaps you should try making the meal more balanced.
Cheat Sheet suggests making your own fried rice at home, writing that "You can add in vegetables and protein in proportions more in keeping with nutritional guidelines."
If you want to give that a try, the website Slender Kitchen has some terrific tips to achieve a restaurant-quality dish that won't weigh you down.
A simple, relatively lean fried rice takes less than ten minutes to make, and the ingredients can be super-simple too: just brown rice, eggs, green onions, carrots, cabbage, and soy sauce.
First, cook your eggs in a separate pan — this is recommended because if you add them uncooked to the rice, they'll likely become runny or soggy.
Next, Slender Kitchen suggests you start with ideally cold and one-day-old rice because cold rice has less moisture, making it perfect for frying.
Just cook it in a pan with your desired amount of soy sauce at high heat and stir often to avoid anything getting burned.
Next you add your veggies, stir in eggs, and you're all set!
You can also add a protein like chicken or tofu to help make the meal heartier.
But if you're like us and don't have much time to cook, there's still a way to enjoy this sort of thing while eating out … and without all calories and fat of traditional fried rice.
Nutritionist Rebecca Scritchfield told Self you can just order brown rice and ask for scrambled eggs on the side.
As she puts it: "Most takeouts have eggs for the fried rice, and they are willing to do this for you."
"Brown rice has a lower glycemic index as compared to white rice, which helps reduce insulin spikes."
According to Livestrong, there's something else you should do when you order fried rice at a restaurant.
Ask the chef to use no butter, less oil, and ask for any other sauces to be put on the side.
That way, you're in control of how much you want to ultimately consume.
We doubt you'll be making new friends among any local chefs in your area, but at least you'll get to enjoy fried rice your way.
Nutritionist and dietician Rachael Hartley has her own wild ideas about the best way to enjoy brown rice.
She told Insider, "You can just order brown rice and your favorite chicken, beef, or shrimp dish and mix them all together."
She says: "Brown rice has a lot of fiber and is a bit more filling."
"Adding brown rice is an easy modification you can make to your meal."
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Why You Should Never Order Fried Rice At A Chinese Restaurant

171 Folder Collection
Seina published on August 4, 2020
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