What you thought you knew, but didnt, about fish and chips!!!!!

Feeling hungry and looking for ideas for a quick tea this evening? Maybe a takeaway ... maybe some lip-smackingly delicious and hunger-quelling fish and chips ... but hold on, you've been picking up various media soundings re. fish and chips being fattening and perhaps not the best on the health front, and so are wondering what the real story actually is.

Well, wonder no more and appreciate that tantalizing wafting aroma of salt and vinegar, savour the crunch of crisp batter encasing a piece of moist and delectable flaky fish accompanied by perfectly cooked chips with fluffy white interiors, and read on to learn the true story of fish and chips as they relate to diet and health.

Regarded too often in media circles as being bad for your health, fish and chips is in fact a fantastic natural, nutritional meal which is good value for money and an excellent source of protein - far better than most other takeaway foods. A portion of fish and chips provides the body with carbohydrate, vitamins B6 and B12, vitamin C, iron, calcium, phosphorous, as well as the trace elements iodine, fluorine, zinc and some important dietary fibre.

As is regularly stated in the world of food and diets, items of food on their own won't make you fat, but rather it is the amount of food that one eats, in relation to the energy that an individual expends, that influences weight and levels of obesity. So it is with fish and chips; if eaten in moderation and as part of a balanced diet, fish and chips is a wholesome, nutritious meal which contains less additives than other takeaways such as burgers and curries, and also contains a number of essential vitamins. British Nutrition Foundation statistics show that an average portion of fish and chips contains almost three times less fat (20.6%) than an equivalent portion of chicken tikka masala and pilau rice.

Fish and chips is one of the least adulterated prepared foods that we can eat; wild caught fish, freshly harvested potatoes, some flour for batter, an oil for the cooking medium, and all cooked with care and attention, skill and expertise to produce a tasty and nutritious meal. Plain and simple ... how many other takeaway foods can ever say that about themselves?

The quick frying methods used today and the high quality oils used by most fish and chip shops, mean that very little oil, if any, gets into the actual fish. The total fat content of an average portion of fish and chips is estimated to be 48.2g. This compares favourably with a cheese and ham sandwich with mayonnaise which has 51.98g fat and a donner kebab in pitta bread with salad and chips, which has a total fat content of 57.74g. The calorie count of an average portion of fish & chips is in the region of 861 calories, and according to the British Nutrition Foundation, taking information from the UK Department of Health, estimated average requirements (EAR), for men and women is that men (aged between 19-50 years) can consume up to 2,550 calories on a daily basis, and women (aged between 19-50 years) can consume up 1,940 calories. Thus ensuring that if eaten as part of a balanced and controlled diet, you can continue to enjoy fish and chips as a regular mealtime option.

Feeling peckish now? Go on you know you want some this evening; fish and chips, salt and vinegar ... and perhaps a side order of tasty mushy peas!

Heaven on a plate ....... or in a takeaway box!