15 Reasons Cooking at Home is Crucial for Your Health
May 01, 2019
Do you spend much time in your kitchen?
Is it a place you enjoy creating special memories and mouthwatering meals?
Or is it daunting and unfamiliar… leaving you feeling intimidated and lost?
I see it as a wonderful space to explore new talents and flavors, invite people to gather, and practice self-care through conscious cooking and nutrition. This post is all about helping you embrace the benefits of cooking at home! I’m sharing 15 reasons home-cooked meals enhance your health in every area: body, mind, and soul.
Plus, I have two free recipes for you from my NEW cookbook, Elena’s Recipes Rx! This cookbook has all the tools you need to accomplish an effective detox at home. The recipes are so delicious, you won’t feel like you’re missing out on anything.
I like to think about health in terms of the whole self because everything is connected. If body, mind, or soul is out of balance, our wellbeing reflects the internal chaos. It is important to incorporate daily practices that elevate our health and wholeness.
Cooking at home can impact each of these areas in ways you may not have considered before. Awareness of these 15 body, mind, and soul benefits will empower you to overcome any hang-ups you may have about home-cooking.
- Controlling the ingredients you consume by cooking with fresh, organic, nutrient-rich whole foods makes it easy to avoid hidden sugars, sodium overload, unhealthy chemicals, and foods you are sensitive or intolerant to.
- Purchasing in-season ingredients from local vendors like farmers markets, health food stores, and co-ops boosts the flavor and quality of your meals compared to superstore and restaurant fare. Consciously sourced produce has a higher energetic vibration!
- Cooking at home allows you to personalize your serving size for your goals. When you know exactly what goes into your meals, it is easy to adjust them for your specific health needs.
- When your meals are homemade, you are more likely to appreciate the meal. Tune in to your body’s hunger and fullness cues, so you do not overeat or create gastrointestinal distress by eating too quickly.
- There are fewer temptations to choose unhealthy options when you aren’t relying on restaurants and convenience options for your meals.
- Learning new skills and cooking methods trains your brain and boosts creativity. Experimenting with new flavors can be exciting!
- Feelings of agency and accomplishment blossom when you finish cooking a delicious meal. Not to worry if cooking is a challenge at first. Like every new habit, we improve with practice.
- Reclaiming time in your life is made easy by planning organized meals for the week. Cook in bulk and freeze meals for the future. You will have more freedom to do things you enjoy!
- Practicing mindfulness through the ritual of cooking gives you the opportunity to express gratitude when handling and preparing your food. Thank it for nourishing your body and “infuse” it with loving care.
- De-stress from a long day by changing your focus and utilizing all your senses to create something fun and rewarding in the kitchen.
- Connecting to the Earth, your soul’s home, is supported by conscious grocery shopping. Bring your own reusable bags and containers. Avoid plastic packaging. The planet and all its creatures will thank you.
- Caring for plants is incredibly grounding and nourishing for the soul. Create a garden or grow some herbs at your home. It’s true that speaking positive affirmations to your plants encourages them to grow!
- Serving others by cooking for them spreads health and joy. What better way to say thank you to a friend who has helped you or welcome a new neighbor to the block than gifting a home cooked meal made with love?
- Spending quality time in the kitchen can improve your relationships and your overall sense of wellbeing. Bring family and friends together in your space to make memories cooking together.
- Discovering recipes your ancestors made preserves family history and honors tradition. Revisit your own roots or learn about other cultures by incorporating authentic ingredients and food preparations. Pass your favorites on to future generations of home chefs.
I hope you are beginning to see how preparing food at home can empower your journey to wholeness!
To help you embrace the benefits of cooking at home, here are two of my all-time favorite recipes, exclusively for you from my NEW cookbook, Elena’s Recipes Rx! This special offering is designed to make your life easier when you are implementing an elimination diet to detox your system, address food intolerances, and renew your energy levels.
Amazing Almond Milk
Yields 6 servings
Get conscious in the kitchen by ditching dairy and creating your own plant-based milk. Making this recipe at home boosts the nutritional value, eliminates waste, and gives you a fun weekly activity to look forward to!
- 3 cups raw almonds*
- 6 cups of water (+ more for soaking)
- pinch of sea salt
- 2 Medjool dates, pitted
- ½ tsp vanilla bean extract
- Place 3 cups of almonds in a large bowl. Then submerge them with water and soak overnight to soften.
- Strain and rinse nuts. Then, place in a high-speed blender (like Blendtec or Vitamix).
- Add 6 cups of water, a pinch of sea salt, 2 pitted Medjool dates, and the vanilla extract.
- Blend on high for 1 to 2 minutes, or until everything in the blender has been pulverized.
- Using a nut milk bag, strain the almond milk, squeezing out as much milk as possible. Then, transfer into glass jars.
- Store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
*You can also use coconut meat or other types of nuts like cashews for variations of this recipe.
Avocado Chocolate Mousse
Yields 4 servings
When you crave something sweet, this healthy alternative to traditional chocolate mousse is a lifesaver! It packs a punch of healthy omega fatty acids and immune-boosting antioxidants too.
- 2 oz dark chocolate (80% cacao or higher, look for fair trade certified!)
- 1 avocado
- ¼ cup nut milk (see recipe above)
- 1 tbsp cacao nibs
- 1 ½ tsp monk fruit extract
- ½ tsp vanilla bean extract
- Chop the dark chocolate into small pieces.
- Melt the dark chocolate in a double boiler.
- Combine the avocado, nut milk, and monk fruit extract in a mixer until well combined.
- Add the melted chocolate and mix in until the mixture is light and fluffy.
- Separate into 4 servings. Just before serving, sprinkle with the cacao nibs.
In my NEW online course, you’ll learn expert-level strategies to implement an elimination diet for full body detoxing. The course guides you through an 8-week detox as part of the curriculum! You’re guided every step of the way to stay accountable, improve your quality of life, and reclaim body, mind, and soul balance.
It's time to awaken your inner healer!