Tip # 7: Adult weight management series: Don’t be afraid of cooking. Nothing is healthier than a home cooked meal

There is nothing else that gives me more pleasure then a home cooked meal. Because it is not just nutritious, delicious, and economical but it also builds some confidence and boosts my self esteem when my family thanks me for cooking a delicious meal and requests to cook it again soon for them because they liked it so much. In order to cook at home you do not have to be a gourmet chef. Most of the time I purchase fruits and vegetables I find on sale. I cut variety of fruits and mix it all together and refrigerate it to be used when I need. You can easily use it for about 3 days without compromising the fresh taste of it. Any kind of mixed fruit with some low fat cottage cheese with some walnuts is an all time favorite of my family including my kids. Most vegetables can be washed and consumed raw such as carrots, cucumber, cabbage, broccoli, bell peppers, spinach etc. You can always keep these vegetables handy to serve before the main meal to be eaten as appetizer with any low fat salad dressing of choice. I personally spray some fresh lemon juice, and sprinkle a pinch of salt. Other vegetables like green beans, French beans, and asparagus, can be easily sautéed in a little bit of olive or canola oil adding a zest of black pepper and a pinch of salt to taste. Any pre-cut frozen vegetable usually has a simple recipe and how to prepare it on the packet itself or can be easily added in any pasta or rice dish. Eating out to me is a journey into the unknown. It takes me couple of trips to a restaurant before I can comfortably order a dish with confidence which is worth my money, time and health. After eating a meal outside, we often discuss on our way back home how we could have ordered that food differently to make it more healthier for us. I always feel more in control and in charge of me and my family’s health when I prepare meals at home. In most of the recipes sugar, salt and butter or oil can be cut in half without compromising the taste. I often substitute low fat yogurt instead of sour cream and low fat frozen yogurt instead of ice cream to make a healthier version. My family can never even notice or complains about it. We also eat out occasionally but often will have a discussion that food either was too salty, to oily or too rich. At home cooking you can cut down salt, sugar, fat as much as you want to and feel a vibrant health after you get used to the flavor of home cooking.
Shraddha Chaubey, MS,RD,CDN
Founder and President
NutriPledge,LLC



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