The Answer to Expect When You Ask a Dietitian to Recommend a Healthy Chip
Photo by Yulia Khlebnikova via unsplash.com
Something seems a bit off when the words “healthy” and “chip” appear in the same sentence. After all, chips are generally not recognized as a so called health food.
Chips that go out of their way to appear healthy (baked potato chips, veggie straws and reduced fat “flamin – hot” cheese puffs) are often among the MOST heavily processed and unhealthy chips out there. Some commonly used ingredients in popular “healthy” chips are: sugar, corn starch, potato flour, citric acid, disodium guanylate, and modified food starch to name only a few.
When asked to recommend a chip, THIS dietitian will always suggest a REAL chip (one with a very short ingredients list of potatoes, oil and salt). Upgrading to a sweet potato chip would add antioxidants not found in white potatoes. If possible, choose a chip cooked in olive oil. With tortilla chips, it is best to seek out a whole grain or blue corn chip (again with only oil and salt). There is NO reason to find such unwelcome intruders as sugar or cellulose gum in your tortilla chips. Flax seed IS however a welcome addition (flax seed tortilla chips are not hard to find).
Remember that ALL chips (including “healthy” chips) are a treat. As with other treats, it is best to include them with a meal instead of snacking on them between meals.
Try Making Your Own Sweet Potato Chips at Home
Recipe adapted from: https://irenamacri.com/
One medium sweet potato, washed, dried and sliced VERY thinly (Do NOT peel!)
2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt (1/2 teaspoon)
1. Preheat oven to 390 degrees
2. In a mixing bowl, toss the sweet potato slices with olive oil until evenly coated.
3. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
4. Place the sweet potato slices onto the parchment paper (do not overlap the slices).
5. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, turning them over about halfway through.
NOTE: Rearrange the sweet potato slices if needed to avoid over-cooking.
6. Remove the chips when lightly browned (some slices may need to stay in a little longer).
7. Season with sea salt.
Written by Jenny Favret, MS, RD, LDN
Nutritionist, Duke Pediatrics Healthy Lifestyles Program