Friday, July 2, 2010

Eat at home and cut time, money and calories!

3 Reasons to cook at home

  1. You save time. I don’t know how many times I’ve heard (and used) the phrase…”let’s do out tonight…I don’t have time to make anything for dinner.” WRONG! Let’s use an example of a spaghetti dinner.
    1. Time to make spaghetti with sauce and a salad: about 20 minutes.
    2. Time to drive to a restaurant, order, get food/eat, and pay: 90 minutes.

That’s not a great way to save time…right?

  1. You save money. Eating out can get pricey! Let’s take our spaghetti and salad example again.
    1. At home: Spaghetti ($2), Sauce ($3), bag of salad ($3) and salad dressing ($3). Grand total for a family of four to eat at home: $11!!!
    2. At a casual dinning restaurant: Spaghetti ($7), side salad ($3), tip ($2). Grand total for a family of four $48!!!

Wow…that’s some big savings!

  1. You save fat and calories. When you cook at home, you control the way that your food is prepared. You can adjust the amount of fat used in cooking, your portion sizes and sodium intake. For instance, a popular casual dining restaurant spaghetti is 710 calories, 22 grams of fat and 1,500 mg of sodium. If you make it at home, it is 281 calories, 2 grams of fat and 721 mg of sodium…HUGE difference…right?!

Quick, easy and flavorful ways to lighten up your cooking.

  1. Reduce your saturated fat intake: Instead of using butter, use olive oil. Save 5 grams of saturated fat per tablespoon by making the switch.
  2. Measure your oil instead of free-pouring it. Oil comes out fast people, so really measure it. Even though olive oil is good for your heart and skin, too much can mean a larger waist, so get out those measuring spoons
  3. Try fat free cooking. Try sautéing your food, making your pancakes and grilling your sandwiches with cooking spray instead of oil and butter. Save 200 calories!! Also, use chicken broth in place of oil or butter next time you are making a stirfry for a flavorful, fat free way of doing things!
  4. Trim the fat…and skin. When preparing meat, always cut away the fat and skin. You will save tons of fat and hundreds of calories by doing so, plus reap the benefits of getting lean protein!
  5. Stock up on easy to cook items. This is the “no excuses” tip. If you have in the pantry, freezer, fridge, it’s a lot easier to whip up a healthy meal right then instead of having to go to the store to get the supplies. Make it easy on yourself and make sure you have the following foods in your kitchen;
    • Whole grain pasta
    • Low sodium pasta sauce
    • Frozen chicken
    • Frozen 93% lean ground beef or turkey
    • Frozen veggies
    • Frozen fruit
    • Skim milk
    • Chicken broth
    • Olive oil
    • An array of spices that you love
    • Potatoes
    • Nuts
    • Bagged salad
    • Cut up veggies
    • Fat free sour cream
    • Reduced fat cheese
    • Light yogurt
    • Brown rice
    • Tuna
    • Beans and lentils
    • Whole grain bread
    • Fresh fruit
    • Vinegar

Happy lightening-up!!

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