During lockdown, more and more of us have been getting active in the kitchen! Cooking is a vital skill, and learning to make healthy, nutritious recipes from home not only saves you money but is also often better for your health. If you’re working through concerns with your physical health, be it in chiropractic care or not, we have some advice for choosing the best methods of cooking from home. Here is our guide to getting started:
Choose good ingredients
Local, fresh ingredients are always best. This means choosing ingredients that are grown locally, if possible, and choosing fresh fruits and vegetables, meats and fish, over those that have been frozen or processed. If you’re working through pain or discomfort, consider choosing anti-inflammatory foods. There is more information on this below.
If time is an issue, leading you to general order delivery or buy quick, already-processed meals, bulk cooking is a great option. This means cooking a larger batch in advance, freezing portions for later.
Make it communal and ask for help
Cooking is something the entire family can get involved with. It’s a great activity at any age, and there’s a satisfying result at the end. Sharing, learning, and creating memories together, are great components of cooking from home.
Cooking shouldn’t be a pain – if you’re having difficulty with certain actions, ask for help. Kids will be especially glad to participate, and by sharing the tasks, you can reduce the difficulty of tasks. Don’t forget to change positions regularly if you’re struggling – most cooking tasks can be done sitting or standing.
If you’re new to cooking, you don’t have to create Michelin-star-worthy recipes from day one! Simple recipes are just as good, ensuring you choose those with good nutritious content. Here are a few great sites with healthy ideas to get you started:
Jamie Oliver – Jamie is the king of straightforward cooking, and his site has recipes tagged for specific dietary concerns, as well as around specific ingredients. If you’re not sure how to cook fish, for example, this is a great place to start.
BBC GoodFood – they have recipes tagged as ‘easy’ and by caloric content, as well as for specific concerns like dairy-free, cholesterol-friendly, etc.
Supermarket websites, like Tesco and Waitrose. With the added convenience of finding the ingredients easily, these sites give straightforward recipes to help get you started in the kitchen.
Remember: You are what you eat!
Many patients ask what they can do to help reduce or control chronic pain. Besides regular chiropractic care to ensure the spine and nervous system are functioning properly, it is important to maintain regular exercise and maintain a healthy diet. Our diet is one of the strongest contributors to our overall wellbeing.
We often hear conflicting advice on what foods we should or should not be eating for our health. Many foods in our modern diets are considered pro-inflammatory. This means they increase the body’s level of inflammation, setting off reactions that can predispose us to pain and illness. Chief offenders are generally processed, high-sugar and overly fatty foods, like cakes, cookies and crackers and foods cooked in oils made from corn, cottonseed, sunflowers, safflowers, soybeans and peanuts. Steer clear of any “partially hydrogenated” ingredients too (remember to check the label!).
Instead, as a general rule, try to eat more fish, grass-fed meats, fruits and vegetables. Whether you have discomfort in your neck, shoulders, low back, knees, or elsewhere, incorporating anti-inflammatory foods into your diet can be beneficial.