Healthy Heart Tip: Takeaway health - Heart Research UK
< Back to News

Healthy Heart Tip: Takeaway health

29 January, 2019


Takeaways are big business, with total UK spending steadily rising and expected to reach £11.2 billion by 2021. With January drawing to an end and more people likely to give up on New Year’s resolutions, don’t let all those good intentions go out with the takeaway trash.


Although enticing and increasingly popular, takeaways can hide high levels of fat, salt and sugar that can cause harm to your heart if eaten regularly. So before you speed dial your usual, use our top healthy tips as a go to guide for takeaway health:


  • Choose the hand that feeds you
    Instead of picking up the letter drop menu, have a surf around for the right supplier and save it to your favourites. There are some good ethical retailers out there that pride themselves in delivering healthy balanced meals.


  • Less is more
    A simple share will halve the calories but won’t rob you of heart health or a satisfied appetite and it’s much nicer to share with a friend.


  • Make a good start
    Samosas, bhajis, spring rolls and other battered choices can start you off on a bad foot, loading your plate with extra calories and fat. Go for vegetable options like grilled mushrooms, soup or a single poppadum and pickle.


  • Make the swap
    Naan breads are high in fat and sugar so try chapattis instead or have naan instead of rice.


  • Fatless cooking
    Opting for a small portion of boiled or steamed rice instead of a takeaway portion of pilau or egg fried rice could save you 75 times the amount of fat.


  • Saucy choices
    Tomato or onion based curry sauces, like dopiaza, jalfrezi or a rojan josh tend to have less calories and fat than creamier curries like masala, pasanda and korma. Even better, go for less sauce with a dry dish like tandoori chicken skewers with veg.


  • Bespoke ordering
    Any good retailer will let you opt for your favourite ingredients, swap a few things about or order a ‘make you own’ dish. Choose thin pizza bases, ask for less cheese, top up with plenty of veg and choose lower fat meats.


  • Step up the flavour
    Take the chilli challenge, how hot can you go? The more intense the flavour the less likely you are to over eat and all those spices could be good for your heart.


Nutritional information isn’t always on the menu when it comes to takeaways, but every now and then ordering in can still be a healthy choice. Make a few simple swaps, share out your portions and bump up the veg.

Better still, you could try making your own ‘fakeaway’…take a look at what our Healthy Heart Grant beneficiaries, Home-Start Colchester got up to creating their own Recipe4Health cook book for families.