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Followed closely behind the air we breathe, the food we eat (our diet) is overlooked by many individuals despite the important role it plays in healthy living. If saving money and eating better are on the agenda, preparing meals at home is an easy solution with countless benefits.
Cheap, easy, and fast is too often the name of the game for food standards. This poorly set norm is evident by the abundance of McDonald’s restaurants and comparable eateries all across the world. Despite the convenience of eating out, preparing one’s own food can be healthier, cheaper, and more rewarding than “fast food,” without causing too much inconvenience.
The beauty, in preparing one’s own food, is the ability to pick and choose exactly what is to be eaten. Recipes can be simple or challenging, and most importantly, catered to one’s favorite tastes. Not every meal or snack needs to be a course that the world’s meanest chef, Gordon Ramsey, would approve.
Considering that eating is done several times a day, and that not everyone has the time to devote to complex recipes, the act of preparing food at home can be viewed as an enjoyable hobby with a practical purpose.
Creating meals at home, which require more than boiling water or that do not come in a box might seem to be a daunting task. Luckily, many healthy foods are actually simple and easy to prepare. For those diving into home cooking for the first time, "superfoods," or foods densely packed with nutrients, are an ideal place to begin the search for new recipe ingredients.
A list of 50 superfoods, compiled by Guidedoc.com, highlights common foods, such as apples, pineapples, and almonds as superior snacking foods.
Breakfast superfoods on the list, include: yogurt, oatmeal, and a variety of fruits.
Lunch and dinner superfoods consist of suggestions, such as spinach, tomatoes, broccoli, salmon, and chicken. Many of these foods can be eaten separately, or combined to make healthy meal options with the aid of recipes found in health conscious recipe guides or online at websites, such as Goodcheapeats.com.
When in doubt, foods that are not processed, are natural, or are the classics such as fruits and vegetables will be the healthiest of all. Although some people go overboard with eating healthy, there is no set rules, and catering a diet to an individual’s needs and pallet is a bonus of making food at home.
Although the general public is bombarded with campaigns to eat healthy, thoughts of salads and vegetables that we were forced to eat as children, usually come to mind. Salad and greens may not be everyone’s favorite foods, but a benefit of preparing meals at home is the wide variety of dishes and endless meal choices that one can make. Many favorite dishes found at restaurants can be made at home with healthier options and without tasting like cardboard. A simple place to start is substituting butter with olive oil.
It is said that a habit can be broken or formed in six weeks and that hobbies last a lifetime. Based on those two sayings, one might therefore conclude that if people could commit to a six week challenge of researching, preparing, and eating healthy meals at home, the very same would be gaining a life-long hobby.