Lighten Up Secrets Revealed!

20 of our most innovative techniques for making any dish more healthful.

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FOR MEATS AND VEGETABLES

14. Opt for leaner meats, such as center-cut or loin meats and skinless, white-meat poultry. "For example, a slice of center-cut bacon has slightly less sodium and fat than regular cured bacon," Downie says. In some cases, pork can be a leaner option than chicken.

15. Add zing with citrus. A squeeze of fresh lemon juice can help brighten the flavors of veggies and meats without added sodium.

FOR SAUTÉING

16. Use nonstick pans and cooking spray in place of oil or butter.

17. When you need oil, use canola, which has nearly half the saturated fat and more healthful, unsaturated fat than other oils.

FOR SOUPS AND STEWS

18. Opt for low-sodium broths and no-salt-added tomatoes; always rinse canned beans in a strainer under cold water, which cuts sodium by up to 40 percent.

19. Puree vegetables to add body. For example, mash some of the beans in a chili or the potatoes in a chowder.

20. Trade 1 percent milk for whole, or half-and-half for heavy cream, in creamy soups.

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