Surely Even Paula Deen Can Use Margarine, Right?

Sallie Geer: Winthrop Nutrition Major, Class of 2010

Today’s post comes from my sister, Sallie Geer, who is currently studying Nutrition at Winthrop University. She recently wrote a paper for a class she’s taking this semester, and I thought that it was a subject that we can all relate to around the holiday season… I mean, we did just stuff ourselves to look sillier than the turkey itself, royally place in the center of the table like a shrine to meat. Now, Christmas is just weeks away, and, knowing the American public… the same thing will occur all over again, but with a possible substitution in meat type, and maybe a change in a side or two. As long as there is egg nog! (Side note: I’ve never had egg nog to my knowledge, it just sounds like a very Christmas-like thing to pick).

The proposal: Choose healthier alternatives, without, of course, neglecting the deliciousness of holiday luxuries. And although, here in the South at least, Paula Deen is favorite pick for recipe ideas, let us all bear in mind that her nickname is the Butter Queen. I think I just clogged one of my arteries typing that sentence… So here’s a bit of Sallie’s proposal:

Becoming health-wise and leading a healthy lifestyle consists of many different methods, each depending on the individual. Some may believe that exercise is the key to getting in shape, while others scrutinize over nutrition fact labels. One step to obtain a healthier state is to modify meals by eliminating or substituting ingredients…

Modification of these ingredients, in my opinion, would provide the best, most health conscious result, while maintaining the same quality Paula Deen intended…

So, thus, Sallie chose a well-liked Paula Deen recipe for Chicken Divan. Here were her results:

Through cost analysis, I discovered that the difference in price was not drastic after figuring in the few changes that were made, in fact, I found it to come out cheaper. The original recipe cost, per portion , $1.49, with the total cost of recipe amouting to $10.45. The cost of original ingredients was: soup $.26, sour cream $.06, and margarine $.02. On the other hand, the modified recipe had a cost, per portion of $1.49 and total cost of recipe of $10.43. The modified ingredients had a cost of: soup $.26, sour cream $.05, and margarine $.01.

In comparison, after the modification, the calories had a slight decrease from the original, with 589.27 calories modified to 556.94 calories, a decrease of 32.33 calories. The original recipe’s total fat was 36.01g, while the modified had 33.15g, decreasing 2.86g of unnecessary fat. The saturated fat was reduced from 13.62g to 10.94g. There was a slight decrease in cholesterol, with original recipe containing 159.46mg, to modified recipe’s 146.92mg. The biggest difference in the two recipes was the sodium levels, with a decrease from 940.07mg to 656.44mg, a total of 283.86mg of sodium. Finally, there was also the benefit of an increase in dietary fiber from 1.40g to 1.49g.

The results determined that nutrient-wise, there were hardly any changes in making the product healthier and cheaper, although both did occur.; overtime, these changes would amount to be much more significant on a broader range. Through further research, I discovered that there could have been other, better modifications that would have made the dish healthier. Some better modifications for sour cream would have been yogurt or light sour cream. The mayonnaise could have been substituted with calorie-wise miracle whip. The cheese could have been decreased from a 1 cup to ¾ cup or by use of a cheese lower in fat. The ½ cup of bread crumbs could have had an alternative of wheat bread crumbs.

I have found through this recipe modification that if someone cannot lead a healthy lifestyle of exercising, they can take the approach by creating fattening recipes into healthier ones. Through slight changes in ingredients, aspects such as high fat, carbohydrates, sodium, and other unhealthy items can easily be decreased. The way to accomplish this is by simple modification of the product by substituting, reducing, or eliminating ingredients. Although these changes might, at the time, seem insignificant, the changes over time should lead to an overall heathier lifestyle, increasing longevity of life and decreasing harmful bodily side effects.


1 Comment»

  Sallie Geer wrote @

I am glad that I could be your inspiration for the blog of the day!

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