I enjoy cooking . Of course there are some days that I feel a little lazy to cook but they are very rare. But lately I keep hearing more and more frequently from friends and family they do not cook, they get take outs and ready to eat food. I think within the past 1-2 years I am hearing this more and more frequently.
Recently I while listening to one of Mark Hyman’s podcasts I heard a nutritionist mention that cooking has become like sewing. This comment got me thinking. Maybe one or two generations back it was common or normal for the mom or grandmom to sew all the clothes for the family. Then with the ready made clothing industry and fashion industry booming, less and less people were making their own clothing. Now sewing has become more like a hobby which you do just for the fun of it.
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Home cooking is also going into a similar path. With the emergence of prepackaged processed food, fast-food and convenient apps such as grubhub, more and more people are leaning towards take outs and eat outs and microwave food. Very soon I can see home cooking becoming more like a hobby.
But what is the cost of this changing trend?
Restaurants want customers to enjoy their food. So it is common for them to add a lot more salt , sugar and fat into their dishes to make them more palatable. They are not focused on making it more healthy, they are focused on making it taste better, so people keep coming back to them.
It’s even worse with prepackaged food. If you read the labels you can see how much preservatives, salt, palm oil etc are added to preserve and enhance the flavors.
These are exactly what they are called- Convenience food. But the immediate convenience will lead to several long term inconveniences-
- You are spending a lot more money on food which further delays financial independence
- You are putting your health at high risk with regular consumption of excess salt, sugar and preservatives
- Most importantly your children are watching. Children learn from watching what you do, not listening to what to tell them to do. Let’s not teach them home cooking is some fun hobby , and eating out is normal practice.
Cooking from scratch is not that hard. It can seem intimidating at first. But once you do it regularly for couple of weeks you will start learning tips and tricks of making it easy- such as batch cooking and freezing, using handy appliances like Instant pot , Involving children in small tasks etc. You know what goes into your dishes and what you are feeding your family rather than some mystery ingredients that is listed on a box, or some chef decided to add to make the food taste better.
I enjoy eating out at restaurants , but this is a special treat such as a date or some celebration. I am hoping that never takes over my daily family dinners.
Hope you all gives this a though and get that kitchen heated up.. Happy cooking!