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9 Food Hacks That'll Change The Way You Eat Forever

03/22/2016 06:11 EDT | Updated 03/23/2017 05:12 EDT

2016-02-29-1456767962-2888648-160229foodhacks.jpg

Written by Monica Matys, Communications Advisor at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

We all follow certain habits when preparing and eating many of our favourite foods. But these food hacks will have you rethinking your mealtime methods.

2016-02-29-1456768723-4284839-tacos.jpgTACOS

Let's face it, tacos are messy! If you want to try and catch some of the meat, sauce and cheese that inevitably drop out of the sides of your taco, use large pieces of salad to wrap your taco in to act as a second shell. Lettuce is flexible and a makes for a nutritious food container.

AVACADO & KIWI

Rather than cutting away the skin on your avocado or kiwi with a knife, reach for a spoon instead. You'll waste less as a spoon can safely graze the skin without risking a cut. For kiwis, just cut the top and bottom flat first before scooping it out.

2016-02-29-1456768779-3779749-cupcakes.jpgCUPCAKES

We've all bitten into a cupcake and ended up with a bunch of icing on our faces instead of our mouths. Next time, tear the cupcake in half horizontally and flip the icing into the middle, like a sandwich.

Planning to indulge? Keep sugar intake in mind.

PASTA

Overboiling your pasta makes it softer because it absorbs more water, making it easier to digest. This isn't good news as it can lead to a faster and higher spike in your blood sugar levels. Overcooking your pasta can also deplete it of some nutrients, including vitamin B and fibre, so make sure your noodles are still a bit firm when you drain them.

2016-02-29-1456768810-8512456-meat.jpgMEAT ON THE BBQ

When grilling red meats, chicken, turkey and even fish under high heat, compounds called heterocyclic amines (HCA's) and dietary advanced glycation endproducts (dAGEs) can form. HCAs have been linked to cancers and dAGEs can damage your blood vessels. You can see these compounds forming when your meat turns brown or black. To protect yourself, marinate meats in advance as this can slash formation of both compounds. Also, cut meat into smaller pieces and grill over medium heat.

VEGGIES & FRUITS

While many people throw out the stalk of the broccoli, they are actually a rich source of fibre, iron and calcium. They are also very tasty and crunchy, and can be eaten raw or cooked. It's also a good idea to keep the peel on many other fruits and vegetables, like apples and cucumbers, to optimize your intake of fibre and other vitamins.

2016-02-29-1456768852-4857144-cheese.jpgCHEESE & CAKE

Swap your knife for some unflavoured dental floss or fishing wire the next time you need to slice through these foods. It will provide a cleaner cut to smaller, softer food items without squishing them down and distorting their shapes.

ORANGES

Rather than peeling small bits of rind away bit by bit, take a knife and cut both the top and bottom flat. Then make one shallow slice running from the top to the bottom of the orange (just enough to break the skin). When you pull it apart, you'll have a neat line of orange wedges ready to be eaten.

2016-02-29-1456768952-3283041-yogurt.jpgYOGURT

Ever notice that thin layer of liquid that always seems to form on top of your yogurt? Make sure you don't pour it down the sink! Instead, mix it into the rest of the product, as it contains protein, calcium and vitamin B12.

Learn more great healthy eating tips from our health experts at health.sunnybrook.ca

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