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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The Essential Kitchen Tools, Utensils and Appliances for Successful Weight Loss

Karen Buzby, RD, LDN, member of the Penn Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery team, discusses kitchen tools that can help you eat healthier and lose weight.
Whether you’re trying to lose weight or recovering from weight loss surgery, healthy meal preparation is critical for weight loss.  Follow these recommendations to make sure your kitchen is set up with the right appliances and utensils to help you successfully shed the pounds.

Use the right utensils
  • Measuring spoons: The tablespoon is useful for portion control and the ¼-, ½- and 1-teaspoon measurements are commonly used in recipes.
  • Measuring cups: The ¼-, ⅓-, ½-, and 1-cup measurements are frequently used for solids, and an 8-ounce glass or clear plastic measuring cup works best for liquids.
  • Food scale: A scale is helpful to weight meat, poultry and fish for portion control
Slow the pace of eating
  • Mini or baby spoon and fork: The small surface area of small utensils reduces consumption by making bites smaller.
  • Tea cup saucer: The bigger the plate, the bigger the serving. A smaller plate size often means eating less. 
  • Cup warmer: Place a cup warmer under a ceramic plate to keep food hot so you don’t feel rushed when you eat.
  • Egg or kitchen timer: Use the timer to slow down the pace your meals and to remind you to drink plenty of water.  
Use storage items to keep healthy meals on hand and promote small portions
  • Insulated, reusable water bottle and brush: A portable beverage container allows you to keep your protein drink or beverage with you at all times. The brush is useful for cleaning your container.
  • Small non-stick frying pan and ceramic baking container: The small size helps you regulate portion size.
  • Extra small, reusable, plastic storage containers: Use the environment-friendly containers to store lunches and on-the-go snacks in the refrigerator and freezer.
Handy kitchen gadgets and countertop appliances make healthy meal preparation easier
  • Meat thermometer: The thermometer allows you to ensure that entrĂ©es are cooked appropriately to help avoid food-borne illness.
  • Vegetable peeler: A peeler removes tough skin from produce such as potatoes.
  • Blender: Helpful for making protein drinks and low-calorie smoothies, you can choose a counter-top blender, hand-held stick blender, wire whisk or shaker.
  • Food processor: A food processor is a kitchen essential during the pureed food phase of the post-surgical diet.
- Karen Buzby, RD, LDN

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