It's hard to say no to hot chips - but do we really have to? Are the golden delights as devilish as they look?
The latest research has dieters rejoicing. Italian scientists claim that fried chips are in fact full of nutrients and absorb less fat than once thought.
They found that zucchini and eggplant absorbs 30 per cent of cooking oil, while potato absorbs just 5 five per cent. The secret is in the starch which seals the potato and reduces oil absorption.More stories from Today Tonight
But to get the benefits, you need to stick to fresh potatoes, not frozen - and leave the skin on.
Dietitian Melanie McGrice says "what the study's saying is that most chips are in fact not healthy, but if they're cooked in the right way then there's the potential that they can be."
She says it's the hidden ingredient - salt - which can be a real killer.
"Things like tomato sauce - it's just more salt, so it just increases the salt content. Some of the mayonnaises and creamy sauces tend to be adding extra fat, so be really wary of those too," McGrice said.
But oil is the great divider when it comes to the healthiness of chips. Canola is the best, with 92 per cent of the good poly- and monounsaturated fats, and a slender eight per cent bad saturated fats. Sunflower has 90 per cent unsaturated, and grape seed 88 per cent unsaturated.
The ones to look out for are cottonseed, with 74 per cent saturated fats; beef tallow with four per cent bad for the heart trans fats; and palm oil - about half of which is saturated fat.
But the biggest shocker of all is coconut oil with 91 oer cent unhealthy saturated fat.
"I'd look for the ones that are a thicker cut chip, rather than more of a French fry," McGrice advised.
Some fast food giants have made an effort to change their chips. KFC, Hungry Jacks and McDonalds now use healthier canola oils, but Red Rooster still uses a mixture of canola and high fat palm oil.
"They're not a healthy food, they're a treat food, but if you're going to make them at home then you can actually make them in a healthier way," McGrice concluded.
This reporter is on Twitter at @tinekae
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