In America, people tend to eat outside or order in as it feels so much easier and faster than cooking at home. But, processed and convenience food can take a serious toll on your health and mood.
Even though you may cook for yourself or your family occasionally, the chances are you order in or dine out at least several times a week. In the process, you miss out on an activity that can make your family happier, healthier, and more connected.
Here’s why you should consider eating home-cooked meals regularly, and how to build a home cooking habit.
There are so many reasons why you should eat home-cooked meals, it’s surprising that we are not all cooking at home at least several times a week. Here are a few reasons or benefits of cooking at home:
Cooking at home regularly results in an overall healthier diet. You get to use fresh ingredients and have control over what’s in your food. And, you’ve probably heard the saying “you are what you eat”, so cooking your own meals gives you a chance to pick healthy and tasty ingredients that will provide you with essential nutrients and energy.
Eating home-cooked meals at least 5 times a week leads to higher energy levels, better mood, and better mental health.
Believe it or not, cooking your own meal can take you less time than making an order and waiting for it to arrive or driving to get it. Not all home-cooked meals take hours of preparation and cooking.
There are numerous quick recipes that allow you to make a delicious and healthy meal in up to 30 minutes. Just search “quick and easy recipes” online and pick your favorite.
Did you know that a typical fast-food order has around 1,200 calories total? To better understand how much that is, just compare it to the recommended daily calorie intake for women, 1,600-2,400 calories, and for men, 2,000-3000 calories. Foods from restaurants tend to have even more calories.
The portion sizes and calorie counts of your home-cooked meals, on the other hand, can be adjusted to your needs and desires. Most online recipes come with serving size suggestions and nutritional information, so watching your calories will be even easier.
When you cook at home, you can do it together with your partner or family which gives you a chance to reconnect with them. Even if only one person cooks, you can all sit down and eat together as this activity strengthens relationships.
In fact, researchers have found that eating home-cooked meals as a family on a regular basis results in happier and healthier kids and a lower risk of smoking and drinking among teenagers.
Making your own meals allows you to enjoy your favorite foods just the way you like. For example, you can make them more or less spicy, your meat more well-done, and combine them with side dishes of your choice.
Cooking your meals at home can save you plenty of money. Not only do ingredients are cheaper than restaurant dishes, but they can also yield more meals. This means that with several basic ingredients, you can end up making more meals for the same amount of money you would give for a takeout. What’s more, you can use any leftovers for the next day.
Imagine how much money you would save if you bring home-cooked meals or leftovers to work instead of buying fast food every day? You can also pack it in your kid’s bento box and help your kids eat healthily at school. After some time, you will realize that cooking at home is a real money saver.
There are many reasons to avoid cooking, just as there are to start making your meals at home. The most common one is not having enough time. But, is it true? How much time do you spend watching TV or scrolling through your social media feeds?
The benefits of cooking your own meals are too good to give up, so here are a few tips to cook more at home:
Home-cooked meals are so much tastier and healthier than fast food or takeout. But, that’s not the only reason why you should start considering cooking your meals more often.
It’s time to stop considering cooking as a waste of time and realize it’s the best thing you can do for your health and budget.
Article Posted In: Home Cooked Food