Being mindful of the space where you prepare your meals and enjoy them is really important to succeed with overall healthy eating habits.
Your kitchen can be your best friend or worst enemy when trying to change your eating habits.
If you are used to buying tons of processed foods, don’t have the proper utensils at home to cook more and your fridge is full with pre-packaged or frozen meals, then chances are you will consume those items and not have the drive to cook a freshly made dinner.
I remember watching Jamie Oliver on a show where he went to visit a family that was suffering from chronic diseases related to food. He opened their refrigerator and all you could see was boxes of frozen entrees, frozen pizza, ice cream, sodas, cheese, artificially flavored juices, etc.
How can this family feel motivated to cook fresh meals when that’s all they had in their refrigerator? No fruits or vegetables in there nor on their counter.
Yes, it is easier to open a box of prepackaged food, place in the microwave and have lunch or dinner ready in 3 minutes. But what about the inconvenience of having to go to the doctor often because you feel sick, or not having enough energy because of your type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and any other issues that come up from an unhealthy diet.
Tips to creating a kitchen environment that makes you excited about cooking:
- Take a closer look at what you currently have in your cabinets and ask yourself: do I like my pots, pans, utensils, containers, etc? Working with tools you actually love will make you want to use them more often.
- Check out your pantry. Is it filled with sugary treats, items that have already expired, or foods with really long shelf lives? Food is meant to decompose and go bad. There are some basic foods that it is recommended to keep in case there are some unexpected natural emergencies. Other items to keep in the pantry should include super foods like goji berries, chia seeds, hemp seeds, etc.
- Look at your counters. Are you throwing the mail, your keys, phone, and other items that don’t belong in the kitchen on the counter? If you do and the counter is constantly cluttered, you won’t want to cook in there. Create spaces outside of your kitchen to keep those items so it is easier to keep your counters clear.
- Let’s talk about your refrigerator. Is it filled with prepackaged and highly processed foods? Replace the frozen meals with fresh fruits, vegetables, and salad packages. Keep cooked beans in there too. Place the fresh ingredients at eye level, and anything else that has longer expiration dates in the refrigerator door or lower shelves.
- Lastly, try your best to clean up after cooking. If you wash your pots, pans, and dishes after your meal, chances are next time you have to cook you can easily find your tools and don’t have to think about having to wash everything when you are actually ready to make something quick to eat.
Over the weekend I decided to apply the Konmari method to my kitchen and declutter everything. I emptied ALL the cabinets, put everything on my living room floor and went through all the items I had.
After going through the selection steps of keeping those items that brought me joy or that I absolutely needed, I started reorganizing the cabinets.
This process is so liberating, and now every time I step into my kitchen I feel a different energy, something that invites me to cook, to make delicious meals that nurture my body and make me happy.
So, are you ready to create your most inviting kitchen to cook more at home? I’ll love for you to share your progress and the changes you made for happy cooking!
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