5. If you can’t go without your butter, mix it with olive oil. Let a stick of butter soften at room temperature, suggests Barbara Morris, R.Ph., a pharmacist, speaker, and anti-aging expert and author. Beat the butter smooth, then slowly beat in 1/4 or 1/2 cup olive oil. You’ve just significantly cut the amount of saturated fat while adding loads of healthy monounsaturated fat.
6. Eat the right meats. Sure, meat is one of the primary forms of saturated fat. But meat — whether red or white — is also an excellent source of protein and trace minerals like zinc and iron. The key is choosing the right meats. For instance, of the 19 cuts of beef that meet the USDA’s labeling guidelines for lean, 12 have only 1 more gram of saturated fat on average than a comparable 3-ounce cooked serving of skinless chicken. The best choices include top sirloin beef, with 2.4 grams saturated fat, and chuck pot roast, with 3 grams saturated fat.
7. Don’t be taken in by the “other white meat” slogan. Put simply, lean chicken is much less fatty than lean pork. A 3-ounce serving of broiled chicken breast (no skin) provides 140 calories, 27 from fat, and only one-third of that fat is saturated. The same serving of roasted lean pork loin delivers 275 calories, 189 of them from fat, half of which is saturated. To top it off, the chicken has 6 more grams of protein than the pork.
8. Once a week, eat an exotic meat in place of beef or pork. We’re talking emu, bison (buffalo), venison, wild boar, or ostrich. All have less than 1 gram of saturated fat per 3-ounce serving, are super rich with protein, and taste extremely good.
9. Rinse ground meat under hot water after cooking. This rinses away a good deal of the fat.
10. Find ways to cook your steak with other ingredients. The goal: Stop putting whole slabs of steak in front of you. Instead, slice the raw beef and sauté with peppers and onions, fajita style. Or cook steak pieces in a wok with lots of vegetables (pepper steak, beef and broccoli). Or top a crunchy, robust salad with steak slices. Or make shish kebab with steak cubes and veggies. Why? You almost always eat less meat when you prepare it as part of a nicely integrated dish. Hold off on the whole steak for very special occasions.
11. Be wary, though, of recipes that allow starches and veggies to absorb fat. Many classic winter dishes have potatoes, carrots, turnips, and other vegetables roasting slowly with chicken, beef, lamb, or pork. Delicious, sure. But all those foods are soaking up a whole lot of fat that’s dripped off the meat. It’s a little more effort, but either find ways to cook the vegetables separately, or wait until you’ve skimmed the fat from the meat juices before adding in the vegetables.