How Bad Is It To Eat Chicken Skin

Today I steamed bone-in chicken thighs and blanched Siew Bok Choy for dinner.  The chicken thighs were kampung (village) chicken, with thick yellow skin.  I marinated the chicken with some salt, oyster sauce, and Chinese cooking wine. I also threw in some ginger slices and wolfberries.  Sherilyn loved the chicken thighs so much that she ate two whole thighs!  

I later found out that this girl even devoured the greasy chicken skin from both the chicken thighs. All of them! And this is something that I've always disapproved of. I've always advised the girls to discard chicken skin when they eat chicken as it's greasy, high in calories, and unhealthy. 

This made me wonder - is chicken skin really that bad for your health? 

Let's explore the pros and cons of eating chicken skin.

Chicken skin is a delicious and often irresistible part of a chicken dish, but there are mixed opinions about how healthy it is to eat. Some people avoid eating chicken skin altogether, while others relish it as the best part of a chicken meal.

According to Insider, most of the fat in chicken skin is the healthy, unsaturated kind, beneficial to your heart.  According to the Harvard School of Public Health, unsaturated fat can be associated with lowering your cholesterol and blood pressure.  

Tonight's dinner of steamed village chicken

Pros of Eating Chicken Skin

Flavor: Chicken skin is a rich source of flavor and can make a chicken dish more enjoyable to eat. The skin adds a crispy texture to the dish, and when seasoned and cooked properly, it can add a depth of flavor that is difficult to replicate.

Nutrition: Chicken skin is a good source of protein and healthy fats. It contains vitamin E, which is an antioxidant that can help protect your body from damage caused by free radicals. Chicken skin also contains niacin, which is important for maintaining healthy skin, nerves, and digestion.

Cons of Eating Chicken Skin

High in Calories: Chicken skin is high in calories and saturated fat. A 3.5-ounce serving of chicken skin contains approximately 475 calories and 44 grams of fat, with 14 grams being saturated fat. Eating too much saturated fat can increase your cholesterol levels and increase your risk of heart disease.

May Contain Harmful Substances: Chicken skin may contain harmful substances such as antibiotics, hormones, and pesticides. These substances are used in commercial chicken farming to promote growth and prevent diseases, and they can accumulate in the chicken skin. Consuming these substances can lead to health problems, including antibiotic resistance and hormonal imbalances.

How Bad Is It To Eat Chicken Skin?

Eating chicken skin in moderation is generally not bad for your health. If you are watching your calorie and fat intake, it is best to remove the skin before cooking. However, if you enjoy the taste and texture of chicken skin, you can eat it in moderation as part of a healthy diet. The key is to balance your intake of chicken skin with other healthy foods that are low in calories and fat. Don't forget to include lots of colorful vegetables and fruits in your daily diet.

In conclusion, eating chicken skin can add flavor and nutrition to your meal, but it is also high in calories and saturated fat. If you are trying to maintain a healthy diet, it is best to limit your intake of chicken skin and remove it before cooking. However, if you enjoy the taste and texture of chicken skin, you can eat it in moderation as part of a balanced diet. Remember to always choose high-quality chicken from reputable sources to avoid harmful substances and promote good health.

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