In the realm of healthy eating, conventional wisdom has long upheld the supremacy of vegetables, with a particular focus on the green, leafy varieties. Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, green beans, and snow peas have traditionally been sought-after staples for those pursuing a well-rounded diet, given their rich content of iron, vitamin C, magnesium, and other essential nutrients.
However, a new contender has emerged, finding its way into the shopping carts of influencers and dietitians alike, touted as a must-have for weight loss: dumplings.
When dumplings initially started gaining traction on TikTok, many dismissed it as another fleeting diet trend. Yet, the narrative shifted when dietitian Susie Burrell included a packet of Mr Chen’s Pork & Chive Dumplings in her list of the healthiest foods to purchase at the supermarket.
Burrell shared her endorsement, stating, “It took me a while to be swayed by the dumpling movement, but now they are my favorite go-to quick and easy meal served with Asian greens and edamame. This is my favorite brand as it is one of the few supermarket brands that does not contain added MSG.”
Despite initial skepticism surrounding the health benefits of dumplings, particularly due to their meat stuffing and often fried pastry wrappers, a closer examination was deemed necessary.
One of the early proponents of the dumpling phenomenon was @therealfreezma, an Australian diet and training coach on TikTok. In August, he recommended Yum Cha Japanese pork gyoza as his girlfriend’s favorite healthy snack, available at Woolworths.
Comprising pork (44%), cabbage, wheat flour (15%), chives (10%), water, sugar, salt, soy sauce, and flavor enhancer (621), gyozas are considered a complete meal, fulfilling the five major nutrient categories: protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals.
Remarkably, the entire 10-pack of dumplings contains a mere 320 calories, making it a relatively low-calorie main meal. It provides 2.8 grams of protein per serving or 28 grams per pack, offering a substantial dietary sodium boost.
However, it is crucial to acknowledge that these packaged dumplings carry a high salt content. Consuming a whole packet of 10 exceeds the recommended daily sodium intake, surpassing 2,000 micrograms. Individuals incorporating dumplings into their diet should be mindful of increasing water intake to mitigate sodium levels.
Additionally, the cooking method significantly influences the overall caloric intake. While dumplings themselves may be a healthy choice, especially those made from pork, chives, or cabbage, frying them in vegetable oil can significantly elevate the calorie count, posing a consideration for those closely monitoring their dietary habits.