Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

The 'Healthy' Meal with as Much Fat and Salt as a McDonald's Burger; Are Supermarkets Taking Us for a Ride with Their So-Called 'Healthy' Meals?

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

The 'Healthy' Meal with as Much Fat and Salt as a McDonald's Burger; Are Supermarkets Taking Us for a Ride with Their So-Called 'Healthy' Meals?

Article excerpt

Byline: JACQUI RIPLEY

Waitrose Perfectly Balanced chicken, prawn and lemon grass noodles, [pounds sterling]3.29 372 calories. 14g fat. 2.5g salt Reality check: contains more fat and salt than a McDonald's cheeseburger.

Ingredients: coconut and lemon grass sauce (43 per cent), cooked free-range egg noodles (31 per cent), cooked marinated chicken breast (12 per cent), king prawn (six per cent), choi sum, red peppers.

Verdict: this dish has the highest fat content, says Ingrid Haitlink of Thrive! Nutrition (020 8932 8767). Even though the meal may contain only 3.5 per cent fat per 100g, a third of the total calories come from fat.

Coconut is naturally high in saturated fat (which raises levels of the "bad" blood cholesterol LDL). The salt content is high, too, nearly half of the recommended daily maximum for women. However, the protein and carbohydrates are well balanced.

Health rating: ..

Tesco Healthy Living tuna and pasta bake, [pounds sterling]1.99 360 calories, 6g fat, 1.7g salt Reality check: contains a third more calories than a Krispy Kreme (an American doughnut), a higher percentage of carbs, but half the fat.

Ingredients: tomato (22 per cent), cooked pasta (21 per cent), skimmed milk, tuna (14 per cent), red and green peppers (six per cent), single cream, low-fat hard cheese (four per cent).

Verdict: the cooked tomato provides an excellent source of the anticancer antioxidant lycopene. The pasta is well- balanced with the protein and the essential fats from the tuna help to lessen the impact of the pasta on blood sugar.

Health rating: ...

Marks & Spencer Count On Us pork fillet in a light mustard sauce, [pounds sterling]2.99 155 calories per serving; 4.7g fat; 0.8g salt Reality check: per serving has slightly fewer calories than a packet of Walkers Ready Salted crisps, contains less than half of the fat but is higher in salt.

Ingredients: cooked pork (41 per cent), chicken stock, mushroom (18 per cent), yoghurt, cream, mustard (four per cent).

Verdict: low in carbohydrates and fibre but a good source of protein. Pork is considered a lean meat as long as you trim the fat (as in this dish). …

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