Most Asian food is
healthy food. A Japanese diet for instance, is a good against heart
disease, overweight and gout. On Chinese food, especially steamed and stir
fried dishes, it is possible to reduce both weight and cholesterol count.
Even the spiced food of India and Southeast Asia is beneficial. Many of
the spices and ingredients such as garlic and ginger have been proved to
have health giving properties.
However, with today's emphasis on weight
control, modifications in the quantity and type of fat used for cooking
has been modified. Ghee which is clarified butter, is the main cooking
medium in North India. It keeps without refrigeration because it is pure
fat with all the milk solids removed. It is essential both for flavor and
for its ability to reach high temperatures without burning. It is used for
flavor, and can be substituted with light oils for a proportion of the
In the food of Thailand, Philippines and certain other Southeast Asian
countries, lardis used as a cooking medium. However, it can be substituted
with a light vegetable oil. The flavor will be slightly different but the
way it sits in your stomach will be different too.
Coconut oil, used almost exclusively in
Sri Lanka, Malaysia and other coconut growing countries, is a highly
saturated oil. You cannot duplicate its flavor but can be substituted
with corn, safflower or sunflower oil if you are battling a
health problem. You may do so by cutting down on the quantity and
substitute a similar amount of skimmed milk.