Health should be a priority for all of us. Eating a nutritious, balanced diet is essential for adults and children. If you’re looking to get the family involved in cooking and healthy eating, or you’re on a mission to improve your health and wellbeing in 2022, here are some top tips.
Cook at home
One of the best ways to enhance your diet is to try to cook at home more frequently. If you tend to buy ready-made meals, or you have restaurants that offer takeouts on speed dial, it’s a great idea to start looking for simple, quick, healthy recipes. For many of us, time is a barrier. When you work long hours and you have kids to look after, it can be hard to find the time for cooking. If a lack of time is a problem for you, try batch cooking and stick to meals that take less than half an hour to rustle up. Filter online search results based on prep and cooking time and opt for fresh ingredients. Meals like fresh wholemeal pasta with vegetables, for example, take just a few minutes to prepare. Batch cooking is an excellent option for busy parents. If you have a couple of hours spare during the week or over the weekend, you can cook dishes to freeze and then reheat to enjoy healthy, easy meals.
Get the kids involved
Cooking can be fun, especially if you get the kids involved and turn it into an activity. You’ll find child-friendly recipes in books, online and via parents’ forums, and you can give your kids tasks based on their age and interests. If you have very small children, for example, they can help with adding ingredients and stirring. If you have older kids, they can take on more responsibility. It’s common for kids to want to get involved in activities such as baking, but you can combine options like a simple sugar cookie recipe for a treat with healthy, nutritious meals and dishes. Teaching children to cook from an early age is a fantastic way to educate them about healthy eating and encourage them to take an interest in food.
Try new recipes
Many of us are guilty of thinking that healthy eating is boring. The truth is that you can enjoy an incredibly varied diet and try all kinds of dishes if you’re trying to enhance your diet and improve nutrition. You don’t have to restrict yourself solely to vegetables or eat the same meals over and over again. Try to steer clear of fad diets and embrace a healthy eating plan, which includes a broad spectrum of foods. Your diet should include all the major food groups. Look for recipes that are nutritious. If you’re unsure how healthy your diet is, you can use a food diary app. This will help you find out how you’re doing in terms of your intake of fiber, protein, vitamins and minerals, sugar and fats. If you have low intake of key nutrients, or your sugar intake is too high, for example, you can address these problems by altering your diet. Look for new recipes online, get ideas from TV shows and social media and search for books that focus on easy, nutritious recipes.
Learn about nutrition
Most of us know that certain foods are good for us, but it’s beneficial to learn more about nutrition and how it impacts our mental and physical health. Read articles in reputable magazines, research using reliable websites, and seek advice from your doctor or a nutritionist if you have questions about your diet. Teach your kids about healthy eating and talk about the foods you eat and why they are beneficial for you. A balanced diet can boost energy levels, improve digestion, reduce the risk of health conditions, including heart disease, some types of cancer, type 2 diabetes and digestive disorders and help you to maintain a healthy, stable weight. An unhealthy diet can make you feel sluggish and tired, it impacts digestion and it can put you at risk of conditions linked to nutrient deficiencies.
Healthy eating is essential for optimum mental and physical health. If you’re keen to improve your diet, or you’re eager to get your children involved, it’s an excellent idea to try to cook at home as frequently as possible, to encourage your kids to cook with you, to learn about nutrition and to try and vary your diet. Look for easy, healthy recipes, experiment with food and have fun in the kitchen together.
This is a collaborative post.