Three Things Everyone Should Know about Cooking for Better Health (and Deliciousness)

Who would ever say they aren’t interested in eating better?  No one, that’s who.

Who only purchases healthier foods every time they eat?  Not everyone, that’s who.

Reconciling our taste buds and our brains can sometimes be a bit of a chore.  It doesn’t have to be.  How do you help end the fight?  Make it so both can win.  Here are three easy things you can do starting today that will help lead to success in the kitchen and with your tastebuds.

1.  It all starts in the kitchen.  Once you buy things you like to eat, you need to turn the ingredients into a meal.  Figure out how to pair them with other foods. Let’s be honest.  We all have some gooey, rich dish that we know is not really that spectacular of a choice in terms of nutrition or calories.  Reconfigure your thinking.  Instead of guilting yourself about it, own it, be real about it, and most importantly, plan the rest of your meal/day/week to incorporate it.  People get tripped up when they try to take on each individual food or dish they eat.  Put things in context and lay out a week’s plan so you have your nutrient needs covered and your favorite dishes accommodated.

2. Stop adding pointless calories to your dishes. Don’t just do what you’ve always done.  Is that extra swirl of oil in the dish necessary?  Is your coffee really in need of an additional pack of sugar?  Does that pie really need two crusts?  Do you really want to pile that much food on your plate for the meal instead of eating some, seeing how you feel, and then going back for seconds?  Habits can be hard to break.  Make mindful choices and you’ll probably save yourself hundreds of calories a week without missing a beat in terms of enjoyment and taste.

3. Master a few herbs and spices.  Really, you don’t need to figure them all out.  Chances are you have a few you like.  Think about your favorite restaurant dishes, things you like the taste of, and ask the waiter (or read the recipe) to see what spices/herbs are making your tastebuds happy.  Focus on those first and be sure to have them on hand.  Flavorful dishes aren’t hard – they just take a little thinking to figure out what tastes best to you and your family/friends.