When it comes to Chinese food nutrition facts, what people think is true and what is actually true can be two very different things. Many people seem to believe that Chinese food, with all of the vegetables and tofu and what-not, is just healthier than other kinds of food. But the truth is that Chinese food can be just as packed with salt, fat and calories as other kinds of cuisine. In fact, there are Chinese food dishes that contain as much as 1,500 calories each. And, if you count the calories in the rest of the dishes in your meal, you could end up eating more calories in one sitting than you should in an entire day. Of course, a lot depends on what ingredients are used, and how they are prepared. It is possible to make healthy food choices when dining out at your favorite Chinese restaurant. And here are 5 of the best Chinese dishes you can choose if you want something that not only tastes good, but is good for you.
- Dim Sim. Dim sim is not only delicious, it’s also filling. This Chinese food dish consists of steamed dumplings that are stuffed with some kind of filling. When deciding on a filling, stick with healthier choices, like chicken and vegetables. Depending on the ingredients used, a single, 1 ounce dim sim can contain about 60 calories and 2.5 grams of fat.
- A Health-Conscious Stir Fry. The nutrition found in this Chinese food choice will depend greatly on the ingredients used. For example, at some Chinese restaurants, one cup of cashew chicken stir fry will contain about 300 calories and 12 grams of fat. Choose stir fries that are packed with vegetables. For protein, choose chicken or shrimp over beef and pork. You can also request that your stir fry be made with less oil than usual.
- Egg Drop Soup. Soups can be a good, healthy choice when dining at your favorite Chinese restaurant. And egg drop soup is one of the more popular Chinese soup dishes. If you want to make egg drop soup even healthier, request that it be made with only egg whites instead of whole eggs. Egg drop soup is a great choice for those really watching their weight since 1 cup of this dish can contain under 100 calories, and between 1 and 5 grams of fat.
- Vegetable Fried Rice. Who doesn’t love fried rice? But, depending on how it’s made, fried rice can be one of the most unhealthy Chinese food dishes you can order. But if you just can’t see yourself giving up this delicacy, there are ways to make it a bit more nutritious. Instead of choosing chicken fried rice, or pork fried rice, go for vegetable fried rice. You can also request that nuts be used to add some extra flavor. At some restaurants, you can get vegetable fried rice that has less than 200 calories and 5 grams of fat.
- Steamed Chicken and Vegetables. For a truly simple and healthy Chinese food dish, ask for a steamed chicken and vegetable dish. One cup of steamed chicken with vegetables can contain as little as 120 calories and 2 grams of fat. Mushrooms, broccoli, bok choy, spinach and eggplant are just some of the vegetables you can choose to go along with the chicken. When ordering in a Chinese restaurant, where you’ll be presented with countless deep fried choices, steamed dishes are always the healthier alternative.