Thanks to our increasingly hectic lifestyle, eating has become one of the lesser priorities in life. For example, we eat only when we are meeting someone in a lavish restaurant or snack mindlessly while watching a movie. When was the last time you took out a couple of hours only to prepare food and to relish it leisurely? When was the last time you put “LUNCH” on your daily to-do list? However, eating home-cooked food is one of the healthiest habits one can cultivate. It has multiple positive effects on the body as well as on the mind.
Nutritious:- Restaurant and other commercially prepared foods are notoriously high in fat, salt and sugar. Home-cooked meals, on the other hand, are free from these and also have the option of replacing certain items with their healthier alternatives. Eating home-cooked meals regularly prepares our palate for simpler and more wholesome foods in the long run, which eventually start reflecting in our trimming waistlines and overall health.
Hygienic:- A recent video allegedly showing a worker of one of our favourite dhabas kneading atta with his feet had us all squirming in our seats. While not all restaurants follow standards like these, it is extremely difficult to maintain desired levels of cleanliness and hygiene while preparing food at an industrial level. However careful food handling and cooking techniques generally found at homes tend to keep the meals healthier and our stomachs happier.
Appropriate portions:- Since childhood, we all have always been taught never to waste food. I followed this rule from childhood and still do, even while eating out with my friends. However, restaurants are famed for their large portions, which ultimately became one of the prime reasons for my overeating and subsequent health issues. While the entire earth is moving towards the Japanese “Hara Hachi Bu” (Eat till you are 8/10th full), it is high time that we, too, make a paradigm shift and change our eating habits. Eating at home gives us the luxury to customise our portion sizes according to our needs, exclusively.
Increased knowledge of food:- Do you know which food you should eat when you feel low after those boring day long meetings? A large plate of French fries and a medium portion of rice and dal will have different effects on your body, mind and soul. Since food is our main source of energy, it can have a filling, healing or even negative effect on our bodies. Since home-cooked food is generally nourishing and made from much lesser ingredients, the taste and effects of each ingredient can be thoroughly savoured.
Builds healthy habits:- Eating home-cooked meals jump-start a lot of good habits which prove to be beneficiary throughout the life.
Easy on the pocket:- Read any book or article on “money saving hacks” and this one comes at the top. Eating home-cooked food more often is one of the biggest and easiest ways of saving money. Even eating out from your neighbourhood thela is a costlier affair in the long run.
Of course, cooking food is not everyone’s cup of tea. A lot of factors like being pressed for time, being bone lazy after a long day and ineptitude to cook well come between us and a delicious and nutritious meal often. For my brethren who still long for some simple homely meals but are unable to find some, let me show you the light to the dark path.