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Weight Loss Benefits and Other Advantages of Grilling Food

Grilling is an American tradition that brings out succulent flavors in meats, vegetables and other foods while lending them a distinctive smoky flavor. According to the Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Association, more than 60 percent of Americans grill each year. Grilling also has an inherent weight loss benefit because it reduces the saturated fat content of meat and fish. As the summer heats up, fire up your grill, crack open a beer and invite some friends over to share in the taste, ritual and weight loss benefits of a backyard barbecue.

Grilling adds unique flavor to meat, fish, vegetables and tofu

Grilling meat, fish, vegetables and tofu or other soy products imbues them with a distinctive flavor that has become a staple of American cuisine. The flavor of grilled food depends on the heat source used in the grill, typically charcoal, wood, gas or electricity.

Weight loss benefits of grilling
Grilling adds flavor to a wide variety of foods.

Each of these fuels has its own pleasant and unique flavor, and experimenting with different kinds of wood and charcoal can yield very fine variations in taste. If you use lighter fluid to light your grill, you should use it sparingly and allow time for it to burn completely before grilling to prevent the taste of the lighter fluid getting into your meal. Grilling purists tend to oppose sauces and seasoning, but spicing or marinating your food can also enhance flavor.

Grilling offers weight loss benefits

Grilling, as opposed to many other cooking methods, offers benefits to those who are trying to control their calorie intake. Nutritionally speaking, the advantage to grilling is that excess fat melts and drips off of meat as you grill it. In a frying pan or a baking sheet, this excess fat would pool around the meat and soak back into it. While grilling will not remove all the fat from meat, it does significantly reduce your fat intake while imbuing meat with that familiar smoky flavor. Aside from meat, grilling is also an excellent way to prepare flavorful vegetables, tofu, veggie burgers and fish without adding unnecessary calories to your diet. A meal of grilled fish and vegetables may be one of the best weight loss foods you could possibly eat.

Grilling tip #1: watch your food closely!

If you want to grill a steak to juicy perfection or get that charcoal flavor into your vegetables without losing their natural flavor, you need to watch them closely. Being attentive to your food, cutting into it to check how far through it has cooked, and knowing the flavor you're aiming for are the fundamentals of grilling. Some specialists have raised grilling to a fine art and know just how to slow-cook a pork shoulder to tender perfection over the course of a day, but most of us are happy just to crack open a beer and watch those grill-lines burn into a steak or some vegetables. And the secret to this is simply to love your food enough to watch it closely.

If you are looking for a way to cut down calories without giving up the mouth-watering taste of the foods you love, grilling is the way to go. Especially during the hot summer months, grilling is a great way to eat well, and to invite friends and family to joining you in doing so. And as you become more experienced, watching the grill lines form in your favorite cut of meat will become a pleasure in itself.

Note: This article has been provided by a guest author. It reflects the author's opinion and does not necessarily represent the opinion of

About the Author: This post is written by Erica Moss who is the community manager for the online Masters in Nursing program at Georgetown University. She also enjoys photography and meeting new people.