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Fish Sticks - The Winnie of Fish
The Worst Catch of the Day

Written by Sky Taylor, Diet Bites

Are fish sticks a healthy choice when it comes to weight loss and good health?

Fish sticks are so convenient to prepare - just remove from the box, shove into your trusty oven and a few minutes later they can be dipped in catsup or tartar sauce. And most varieties are rather yummy.

So can easy-to-prepare fish sticks be a part of your healthy diet plan? Well....the answer is both yes and no as not all fish sticks are created equal.

Here's the big tuna on fish sticks....

The average fish stick contains about 70 calories and 4 grams of fat.

If you place them into your large oven - or your toaster oven and bake them, then - yes! they can indeed fit nicely into your weight loss plan.

Take note however that dipping sauces need to be chosen wisely.

Tartar sauce varies greatly in calories depending upon the brand as well as the ingredients used. One tiny teaspoon of the white stuff can contain more calories than the fish stick itself.

You can make a skinny version of tartar sauce using reduced fat Mayo or my favorite - Miracle Whip Light. It's tangy, it's groovy - and fish just love it.

Add a little sweet pickle relish, chopped onion and a dash of paprika. A squeeze of lemon juice also adds at twist to the skinny tartar sauce recipe.

On the other hand, if you decide to fry the fish stick - then the caloric content will be doubled while fat grams shoot out the roof, leaving that one tiny fish stick with more calories and fat than a three-ounce serving of flounder.

Keep in mind that we're not even counting the tartar sauce that fish sticks love to dip into, even the skinny recipe.

Why do some individuals like their fish sticks fried?

Because it adds crunch and also a bit of flavor. Like it or not, fat adds flavor.

Rather than frying - we can still achieve that extra bit of flavor as well as a crunchy texture using the following cooking method. Spread about 1 Tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil OR peanut oil OR canola oil only a sheet of foil.

The oil contains 120 calories per Tablespoon - all of it, the peanut, the olive and the canola.

So we're only adding at maximum, 120 calories to all of the fish sticks - and after cooking is done, there will be at least 1/3 of the oil left on the foil. So if we're cooking a dozen fish sticks, we're only adding about 10 calories per fish stick.

Next, be sure to cook the fish ample time to produce the crunchy crunch. About half way through the cooking phase, remove and turn the fish sticks over so that they thoroughly crunch on both sides.

Nutrition Notes for Fish Sticks

Fish sticks tend to be a favorite for tiny tots and make a convenient and economical meal. However, most fish sticks consist of minced fish - the winnies of fish. Therefore, look for 'fillet' on the packaging for the best fish.

And even though they appear to be economical on the surface, whiz by the fish market to do a bit of comparison pricing before latching onto that frozen box. It might be a lot cheaper to purchase fresh fish.

However, if the market you shop tends to be pricey for fresh fish, search for one that's light on the pocketbook. A good fishmonger can be a dieter's - as well as a healthy family's best friend.

And when fish stick aren't on the menu - try this tasty low calorie flounder recipe: wash fish and check for bones.

Next, place fish on a sheet of aluminum foil that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Sprinkle on your favorite herbs, a bit of salt and pepper and pop into a 375 oven until flounder flakes.

My favorite herb is rosemary and I also enjoy parsley. Because I enjoy rosemary so much, it's the star of my humble herb garden. I simply snip off a twig, wash it to remove dirt - and place it on top of the flounder.

A three-ounce serving of flounder is equal to about one small fillet. Another diet plus? The fat is reduced to about 1.30 grams in comparison to the fish stick.

Nutrition Facts, Calories in Fish Sticks

Based on one fish stick that is about 4" by 2" by 1/2".

Calories = 158 kcals
Protein = 6 g
Total Fat = 9 g
Carbs = 12 g
Dietary Fiber, Total = 1 g
Calcium = 9 mg's

As to other lipids, saturated fat is 2 grams, monounsaturated is 1.8 grams, polyunsaturated is 4.5 grams. Some varieties contain Trans fat, so beware of that as well as the saturated fat content.

Cholesterol values equal 16 mg's per stick.

How Many Calories in a Pound?

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