Take-away the bad stuff

VERY rarely I treat myself to a take-away. Not something I’m proud of, but sometimes at a weekend I’m so tired and emotional it really is the only stuff to suffice that doesn’t take sobriety to prepare; any fool can pick up a phone and slur a number.
But think I’ve been put off take-away food for life, by this week’s news of a new survey in Liverpool which found extraordinary levels of salt and fat in foods like Chinese and pizza.
When I say extraordinary, how about FOUR TIMES the recommended daily allowance of salt in a single serving of beef in Black bean?
Or the single pizza with double the daily allowance of fat?
If those amounts were piled up high on a plate for you to see (a la You Are What You Eat) then nobody would tuck in. But hide them in an exotic sauce, or on a deep-filled pizza, and people lap them up!
It begs the question, how can we really know what’s in take-away food?
The answer is, of course, that we don’t. Unless we ask.
Take this story, of what could be the healthiest curry in Manchester. Kathryn Burns and her husband Martin admit that restaurant boss Ali Fiaz took some persuading, but they got him to redesign his menu at their fave Lal Haweli restaurant in Rusholme. Some dishes now have a quarter of the calorie and fat content, after yoghurt replaced cream, and salt was radically reduced.
Would you even dream of asking your restauranteur to cut down his fat and salt? I’m not sure I would either.
But the message from these two news stories is that it pays to ask exactly what you’re putting in your mouth – and that if you aren’t happy with the answer, sometimes, something can be done about it.


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