Regardless of your cooking experience, homemade meals are time well spent. The benefits of cooking go way beyond healthier ingredients. Check out these surprising ways unleashing your inner chef can improve your life.
1. Adds Spice to Romance
Feeling like you’ve run out of things to talk about with your partner? Craving new surprises? Cooking together can be the perfect — pardon the pun — recipe to breathe new life into your relationship.
As you prep veggies or consult a cookbook, there are countless opportunities for joking, compliments, heartfelt conversation and touching. Mistakes give you something to laugh about, and triumphs give you something to celebrate together.
Choose new recipes that appeal to both of you. Usually, prep time isn’t more than 30 minutes, and there’s plenty of room for smooching while dinner cooks.
2. Takes Care of You Emotionally
Making nutritious meals from scratch isn’t just good for your physical health; it’s good for you mentally and emotionally, too. Take a gander at these science-backed benefits:
Improves your mood
Boosts your confidence and self-esteem
Creates stronger connections with friends and loved ones
Inspires your creativity
Helps many people with depression and anxiety
When you’re cooking, you have an opportunity to disconnect for a while from things that are bothering you. You can focus on the refreshing smell of ingredients such as fresh basil, sauteed garlic and orange peel.
3. Saves You Time (and Usually Money)
The number one obstacle to cooking — not having enough time for it — may be a complete lie. When you do the cooking, you have prep time, but you’re also making enough food for several meals. If you want to save even more time, try smart shortcuts:
Use a food slicer to shorten prep time considerably
Start with a store-bought base (like basic spaghetti sauce) and add healthy ingredients
Prep veggies for several meals and store them in airtight containers
Choose frozen veggies
Make more salads
When you order out, you have to wait for the food to be prepared, plus wait for delivery. It can take 30–60 minutes before you’re eating, for every meal.
4. Gives You Healthy Vitamins Naturally
All of these benefits are in addition to the obvious one: healthier meals. Cooking at home nearly always reduces calories, fat and salt while providing more nutrients.
This can have a huge effect on your blood pressure, blood sugar, energy levels, heart health — even sleep quality! Even simple recipes can be packed with antioxidants, like chicken tacos with fresh cilantro, tomatoes, yellow peppers, black beans and avocados.