Healthy recipes for weight loss must to be tasty and contain healthy ingredients. This can easily be achieved by eating lean protein and lots of vegetables. Chicken is a great source of healthy protein.
This recipe provides many different stir-fry options, so you can keep it interesting.
Why Healthy Recipes Include Chicken
Chicken is a good lean protein source and it’s very versatile. Poultry is also a good source of vitamins and minerals.
Chicken is Low in Calories and High in Protein
When it comes to lean protein, chicken is a very popular option weight loss option. Chicken breast, with 21 grams of protein per 100 grams, is an excellent source of lean protein.
One cup of chicken breast contains only 231 calories. 100 grams of thigh meat or wings has a little over 200 calories.
Chicken breast contains about 21 grams of protein for 100 grams, making it a very good lean protein source.
Rich in Vitamins & Minerals
Chicken is a rich source of vitamins and minerals, including:
- Vitamin B which helps the body with energy production and with the formation of healthy red blood cells.
- Vitamin D helps in calcium absorption and bone strengthening.
- Vitamin A helps in building eyesight and plays an important role in the immune system.
- Iron is important for hemoglobin formation, muscle activity, and preventing anemia.
- Potassium and sodium are electrolytes, which aid in fluid balance.
Chicken Has Many Health Benefits
- Weight Loss
Diets with high levels of protein have been known to be effective in reducing weight and chicken fits well as part of a high protein diet for weight loss. A study published in the journal Nutrition shows that weight loss and improvements in the total lipid profile can be achieved in people who regularly ate chicken breast.
- Control of Blood Pressure
Research published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry in 2008 showed that chicken consumption can help control blood pressure. When following a diet high in chicken, nuts, low-fat dairy, vegetables and fruits, improvements were observed in people with hypertension.
- Anticancer Properties
Studies have found that in non-vegetarians, higher consumption of red meat, pork, and ham increased the risk of colorectal cancer, while in chicken and fish eaters, the risk of developing this cancer in later life was reduced, although the evidence is not conclusive. Reduction in consumption of red meat is associated with lowering the risk of colon cancer.
- Reduced Cholesterol
The amount of saturated fat and cholesterol found in red meat such as beef, pork, and lamb are much higher than the levels found in chicken, fish, and vegetables. Therefore, the American Heart Association has advised consuming chicken or fish instead of red meat for a lowered risk of cholesterol and subsequent heart disease development.
- Treatment of Common Cold
Warm chicken soup actually can provide relief from the common cold, including symptoms like a congested nose and a sore throat.
Healthy Recipes for Poultry Stir-Fries
Here are several variations on a chicken (or turkey) stir-fry.
Poultry is especially well suited to stir-frying, because it cooks quickly and pairs well with a wide range of seasonings. Pick ingredients from each of the categories and follow these basic instructions:
Directions (makes 4 servings)
- Cut the poultry into strips ¼-inch wide (or buy it precut for stir-fry). In a small bowl, stir together 1 cup chicken broth, 2 teaspoons cornstarch, 1 teaspoon brown sugar, and ¼ teaspoon salt to make a coating sauce; set aside. In a wok or large nonstick skillet, heat 2 teaspoons olive or canola oil over medium-high heat. Cook the poultry until cooked through, about 3 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the poultry to a plate.
- Choose 2 to 5 vegetables, using a total of 5 cups. Add 2 teaspoons oil and any hard vegetables (asparagus or broccoli) to the pan; stir-fry for 3 minutes. Add any soft vegetables, 1 to 3 aromatics, and 1 to 4 seasonings. Cook until the vegetables are crisp-tender, about 3 minutes.
- Stir the coating sauce to recombine. Return the poultry to the pan, along with the coating sauce; cook until heated through and evenly coated, about 1 minute.
- Chicken breast, skinless, boneless, ½ pound
- Chicken thigh, skinless, boneless, ½ pound
- Turkey cutlets, ½ pound
- Red or green bell peppers, cut into thin strips
- Onions or leeks, cut into matchsticks
- Asparagus, cut into ½-inch lengths
- Sugar snaps or snow peas, strings removed
- Broccoli florets
- Shredded cabbage
- Scallions, 3 sliced
- Garlic, 3 cloves minced
- Shallots, ¼ cup minced
- Grated ginger, 1 Tbsp
- Red pepper flakes, ½ tsp
- Chili powder, 1 tsp
- Grated orange zest, 1 tsp
- Curry powder, 1 tsp
- Dark sesame oil, 1 tsp
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