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8 Benefits Of Cooking At Home, Healthy Lifestyle Habits

Today I am introducing my dear friend James King from the UK, who is going to be a guest writer here on the Eat Nourish Glow blog. James, a Certified Health & Wellness Coach, and today he's shared how choosing to cook at home can really help you pivot and get back on track with your health goals.


As you know, I practically live in my test kitchen, so am I'm in totally agreement with James. We both hope this inspires you to get back into your kitchen for more whole food-based home cooked meals!


8 Benefits Of Cooking At Home (+ Quick Whole Food Recipes To Try)| Eat Nourish Glow
8 Benefits Of Cooking At Home (+ Quick Whole Food Recipes To Try)| Eat Nourish Glow

A plate of freshly roasted veggies full of vibrant colours and fragrant herbs. But you won't find this at any restaurant or drive-thru. The modern world brings the allure of fast food joints on every corner, with ‘working’ lunches scoffed down behind screens, and plenty of take-out delivery options. Food preparation has almost become obsolete in many households, and that might be more concerning that you think.


My aim today is to remind you about the widely forgotten benefits of cooking your meals at home. The skill of being able to prepare nourishing, whole food-based meals within the confines of your kitchen has fallen by the wayside for so many, and coincides with the rates of skyrocketing health conditions.


Learning how to prepare a delicious plate could one of the most important parts of your journey towards being the best version of yourself. Keep reading below to find out why you need to bust out your best recipe book or grab one here.


Get The Nutrients You Need


We all need a wide variety of specific macronutrients at each meal. The ratio of these nutrients is found in carbs, protein, fats and fibre, and can vary drastically based on a number of lifestyle factors, such as your sex, personal biology or even the time of day. For example:


  • Just finished an intense workout? Now is the time to consume 30-40g of protein as part of your recovery and cool down routine

  • Prone to blood sugar spikes? You'd benefit from eating more lower glycaemic carbs to help keep your blood sugar levels in check.

  • Are you an adult woman? You'd benefit from consuming whole food based carbs rather then eliminating them, learn more here.


Dining out, you'll find that restaurants tend to cater to your tastebuds or serve food for your convenience not for your health. They rarely consider the macronutrient breakdown required for your individual dietary pattern, especially since they have no idea what your dietary needs, health status or requirements are.


It’s also worth noting that many restaurant meals provide plenty of carbs and fat but limit protein. The reason behind this is that protein is the most expensive macronutrient, and also the most satiating. Providing a large portion of cheap food that leaves you feeling hungry for more is a great way to boost profit margins.


Cooking at home will allow you to portion your food as you see fit. It means you can plate up the amount of protein, carbs and fat you need at every meal to perform at your best.


Easier To Make Healthy Choices


Cooking your own meals makes it easier to resist the temptation of high-caloric, low-nutrient foods. It leaves no room for packaged and processed foods, or the tempting deserts that are often found on restaurant menus.


Studies show that people eating more home cooked meals have improved diet quality and lower body fat levels. The study results also found that those eating home cooked meals more frequently had improved adherence to healthy dietary patterns, greater fruit and vegetable intake and higher vitamin C levels.


Eating at home allows you to include ingredients that are good for your body and avoid harmful additives. It will put you in control of portion sizes and allow you to prepare meals that have an adequate amount of calories.


Chance To Connect With Friends & Family

Connect With Friends & Family With Home Cooking |  Eat Nourish Glow
Connect With Friends & Family With Home Cooking | Eat Nourish Glow

Mealtimes have been seen as a social event since the dawn of civilization, long before the invention of televisions and mobile devices. Scoffing down take-away food while scrolling through social media has become common in many households, but is leaving us more disconnected than ever.


Cooking at home gives you a chance to rekindle those precious family dinners that may have fallen by the wayside. It’s an opportunity to share your favourite dishes with the most important people in your life.


Meal preparation can also be turned into a fun activity to enjoy with the family. Getting your kids to help prepare dinner can be an invaluable learning experience for them as well as a good connection point.


Getting involved in cooking always leaves people more connected to the food they’re eating and brings a sense of accomplishment to the dinner table. The act of enjoying the food provides a chance to have meaningful conversations and discuss the day’s events without distraction. It will likely be one of the highlights of your day.



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Cooking At Home Is Much Cheaper

It’s Much Cheaper To Cook At Home  |  Eat Nourish Glow
It’s Much Cheaper To Cook At Home | Eat Nourish Glow

It’s no secret that eating out can be expensive! Good quality restaurant food can cost extortionate prices, and even substandard fast food joints can be way more expensive than a trip to the local market.


Studies show that shopping in the grocery store will allow you to prepare high-quality meals without blowing your budget. It means you can buy your favourite foods in bulk, avoid unnecessary ‘side orders’ and take advantage of any special offers they might be running.


The farmers market is another place you can source quality cooking ingredients for a sensible price. You will often find a wider selection of locally grown produce for a very reasonable price, while also supporting your local community.


Home Cooking Can Be Incredibly Fun


The joy of cooking at home should not be overlooked. Even the most sceptical of chefs will likely be amazed at just how stimulating the experience can be.


Picking out ingredients, finding delicious recipes and perfecting your creations may be a challenge that can add creativity to your life. Every meal should feel like an opportunity to laugh, smile, enjoy, relieve stress and even find some relaxation.


Many people can tap into a meditative state when cooking. Focusing on the task at hand allows you to wind down from your day and enjoy a moment of mindfulness that can enhance your feelings of wellbeing. It can also be a great ‘distraction’ from anxiety or ruminating thoughts for habitual worriers.


Whether you’re dancing around the kitchen to music or enjoying a few cherished moments with family members; cooking can be a great way to bring joy into your life.


Meal Prep Makes You Feel Valuable


Feeling valuable, confident and accomplished is vital to your overall wellbeing. In fact, studies show that feeling valued and important are significant predictors of depressive symptoms. Being able to cook makes you incredibly valuable to the people around you. It’s a skill that’s still coveted by colleagues, friends and family members; especially if it’s not your full time job!


Despite the trend towards restaurant food; most people still get incredibly excited by the idea of a home cooked meal. Learning how to prepare fantastic food can make the focal point of your household and maybe even the ‘talk of the town’.


Build A Healthy Lifestyle


Cooking at home could be the foundational habit that sets you on course for a healthy lifestyle. Discovering new recipes, preparing delicious dishes and keeping track of what goes into your body may set you up for success in all of your wellness practices.


Just the act of researching and creating recipes can leave people feeling energized during their workouts. Knowing that you are taking care of your diet can lead to increased respect for your body that carries over into many other aspects of your life.


Another key health benefit of cooking at home could even be improved sleep. Feeling valued, having community, relieving stress and eating unprocessed meals are all associated with improved sleep quality.


Improved Mental Health


The benefits of cooking at home extend well beyond physical and financial wellbeing. Having the knowledge to create your own recipes has even been shown to improve mental health irrespective of healthy food intake.


The improved self-confidence and sense of accomplishment that come with cooking proficiency are a recipe for peace of mind. Improving your skills in the kitchen could lead to better mental clarity, reduced feeling of inadequacy and even strengthen feelings of self-worth.


It’s amazing how just the act of cooking can breed such feelings of contentment without even changing your dietary habits. The power that comes with cooking at home is truly remarkable.


Final Thoughts...


I’m no stranger to the health benefits of cooking at home. Since improving my skills in the kitchen; I have seen my physical, financial and mental health improve in ways I cannot imagine.


I love a good restaurant meal as much as the next person, but the thought of eating out more than a couple of times a week certainly doesn’t fill me with joy. Having control over my own nutrient intake is something I cherish, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.


The mental clarity I gain from cooking is also integral to my overall wellbeing. One of the highlights of my day is preparing a delicious dinner while listening to one of my favorite podcasts. It gives me a chance to unwind, zone out from the stresses of everyday life and nourish my body at the same time.


I hope this article has inspired you to start baking, stirring and sautéing more often. Why not start by learning a few fantastic new recipes? I’m sure it will give you the inspiration to start your new culinary journey.


Live healthy,


Guest Wellness Writer
James King, Certified Health & Wellness Coach
Find on IG @plantfuelfocus
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Guest
Oct 28, 2022

Great article guys!!!

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Emma Lisa
Emma Lisa
Oct 31, 2022
Replying to

Thank you, so glad you liked it...stay tuned for more!

Health + happiness,

Emma x

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Guest
Oct 23, 2022

Thank you, this was very helpful. Cheers, Mary Lee

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Emma Lisa
Emma Lisa
Oct 31, 2022
Replying to

Thank you, Mary Lee ...we're happy you enjoyed the article it...stay tuned for more!

Health + happiness,

Emma x

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