They say the way to the heart is through the stomach, so our relationship expert shares four reasons and ways to improve your relationship one bite at a time.
Food gets a bad rap these days. So many allergies, intolerances, “bad” foods vs. “good” foods, superfoods, “too many carbs”, “too fatty”, etc. As a society, we also tend to lean towards quick and convenient vs. nourishing and intentional. We eat out way more than we used to because everyone is so busy. Rarely, will you find a family that still prepares nightly meals, sits down together and enjoys yummy food while talking to one another. There are too many work meetings, sports, practices, games, rehearsals, lessons, tutors, playdates, happy hours, or we are just plain exhausted. It’s time to re-center, reprioritize and reconnect. Here’s why:
Preparing food can be fun… and bonding
Whether you are single, dating, married or have a hundred kids running around you, food prep and cooking can be a great way to connect. Having a shared goal is a great way to build trust and communication with children. It also allows children to become more self-sufficient as they grow older. Cooking with your partner can allow for time together to gently decompress after a long day.
You will feel better
Food prepared in restaurants or dropped out of a fast food window aren’t the healthiest choices. When you select the ingredients yourself you can insure that it is fresh and nutritious. When kids are well-nourished they are happier, sleep better and can be more present. When adults eat a good, healthy meal we feel better, which makes us more likely to engage with our partners. We can take interest in their day and be more open to touch by not feel weighed down or bloated by a greasy, fried meal.
Planning nightly meals and shopping with a grocery list can save you two to four times the amount of eating out. Based on this research (www.flannelguyroi.com), cutting four meals out every week can save you up to $11 per person per meal! That money can be better spent on a mani/pedi, a fun family outing or a romantic date for two!
Cooking provides a short, attainable task with a measurable goal. This means a success in the kitchen helps to build self-esteem- and not just for kids! Additionally, when self-esteem goes up depression and anxiety symptoms go down. I know what you’re thinking: “cooking is not therapeutic when you are a terrible cook like me! Its stressful!” I hear you! I realize we are not all 5 star chefs (or even one star…), but nowadays there are so many options that help make cooking more manageable. Check out Blue Apron, Hello Fresh or Plated. Or for a fun solo activity, a great date night, or a bonding family activity try a cooking class. Jungle Jims and Sur La Table have great ones!
Get out of the fast food drive-thru line, the line in front of the hostess stand or off of the UberEats App and get yourself back to the kitchen table for some good quality food and bonding.