Are Air Fryers a Healthier Option?
By Sara Butler
Air fryers are making quite a splash in kitchens across America. Marketed as a good alternative for those that are health conscious, it seems as if everyone who wants to have crispy and delicious food right out of their own kitchen is getting one. But what is the truth behind the air fryer? Is it really better for you? Here's what you need to know.
Air Fryers: How They Work
Air fryers don't literally fry anything. They simply circulate hot air in a manner similar to a convection oven. The food you want to cook sits in a basket and any fat that comes off the food during cooking drips down beneath the food. Air fryers do add crispiness to some foods, such as fries and chicken wings, that can be difficult to get from the oven. They cook things a bit faster, too.
Is an Air Fryer a Healthy Alternative?
This is a question that doesn't have a clear cut answer. On the one hand, air fryers do tend to be healthier than a traditional deep fat fryer since the foods cooked in them absorb less oil during cooking. Air fryers overall do reduce the overall calories and fat content of the food cooked in them simply due to the manner in which they cook things.
Still, this doesn't mean that food that comes from an air fryer is going to be healthy. After all, if you're cooking unhealthy food options in the air fryer, simply the way you cook them isn't going to magically transform them into a healthy meal. You still need to be cognizant of what you're eating and aim for vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins.
Things You Can Make Healthier
So, while an air fryer won't make food healthy, it can make indulging in some things a little bit better for you. You can make air fried chicken or hot wings in the fryer, french fries (try out some sweet potato fries for a little nutritional kick!), avocado fries, or even cauliflower "hot wings." These options are a great way to satisfy your cravings without the number of calories or fat you'd find in a traditional recipe.
An air fryer is a good appliance to add to your kitchen lineup. Used in moderation, it can help to reduce the fat and calories you get in some dishes and allows you to experiment with healthier options.
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Orlando, Fla.