If you look around you, you’ll notice that many families are sitting down in fast food restaurants and grabbing a bite to eat. With food becoming cheaper, as well as getting great deals where (in some cases) kids eat free, more and more families are being part of the ‘eating-out’ trend. This is a scary thought and the statistics get even scarier.
The Department of Heath revealed that 71% of mothers don’t have the time to cook and over a third of families eat out every week or get takeaways. This leads to an unhealthy pattern which – as you can see for yourself – is leading to obesity in many countries, especially America. You can place the blame wherever you want, but when it comes down to it, many mothers don’t have the confidence to cook or don’t have the time.
If you make a meal from scratch – the meal has more wholesome goodness which satisfies hungry tummies as well as being healthier than eating out. Not to mention that it works out to be cheaper in the long run. Children who grow up on a diet of chicken nuggets, pizza and sausages will not have a healthy lifestyle due to the convenience food they are served.
Many takeaways and ready to eat foods contain high levels of sugars, saturated fats and salt so this could lead to health problems for your children. Even though lifestyle habits have changed over time and time strapped mums don’t have the same amount of time to cook family dinners the same way their mothers did, there are easy ways to fix the problem.
The tip is to not worry about what to cook, and whether you have the ingredients for it, or if it will come out great. There is only one way to get it right, and that is by trial and error. Many young mums have taken time to perfect the art of cooking – or even to get edible food on the table. Cooking doesn’t come naturally to everyone – it takes time, patience and hard work on your part to get good, wholesome and healthy meals to your family.
You don’t always have to prepare elaborate meals and there are acceptable shortcuts which will cut down on your cooking time so you can focus on other things. Cooking shouldn’t be an all day affair – with the amount of responsibilities young mothers have to face, it’s not realistic to expect fancy 3 course meals.
Many supermarkets stock pre-cut vegetables and pre-cooked noodles or rice. This is a smart shortcut in preparing food, especially if you have to keep running after your young one who has just learnt how to crawl and is discovering the big world inside your home. Instead of serving chicken nuggets, marinate a chicken in the oven. It takes five minutes to prepare – you can even buy a readymade marinate if you like. This is wholesome food that will be enough for at least two meals if not more.
We cannot go back in time to how our own mothers used to cook. Time is a luxury that we either cannot afford to waste or cannot master. Smart cooking involves simple recipes that are easy to make and take 15 minutes to prepare the ingredients beforehand. Smart cooking also involves not getting too stressed out about cooking.
Things get burnt, food can be soggy – but that is nothing that a bit of salt and pepper can’t fix. Keep some seasonings on the side so that if something tastes bland, it can get fixed in a jiffy!