One of the most powerful ways of reclaiming control over your health is to commit to having 80% or more of your meals be home-cooked, from “scratch.” This “old-fashioned” approach to meals is powerful. If many of your meals come from boxes, cans, frozen foods, hot or cold bars at Whole Foods, or restaurants and take out (yes, even the “healthy” options), this could be a game changer for you.

How to cook your own meals while leading a busy, Bay Area life:

-Cook double or triple, always. If you cook for one, make 3 servings. If you cook for four, cook for 12. It doesn’t take much longer to double or triple what you are cooking, and it saves you tons of time in the long run.

-Make friends with leftovers. This is a corollary to #1. OK, so it can be kind of boring to eat the same batch of soup every day for lunch for 5 days in a row – but as far as I know, no one dies of food boredom.
Pack your lunch. Simplest version: since you are cooking extra at each meal, pack up last night’s leftovers for lunch the next day.

-Cook one day a week. Some weekends, I spend 3 or 4 hours on Sunday afternoon cooking for the week. For example: one giant pot soup, beef stew, several winter squashes and sweet potatoes, steamed beets and a veggie slaw. These weeks are wonderful; each night I just steam a green veggie, heat up the rest and presto – instant dinner. After dinner I pack up lunch for the next day.

-Freeze entrees. When you make those giant batches of stew and soup – freeze several portions. Then you have backup for when you don’t have time to prep ahead.

Kirstin Lindquist, L.Ac.

Photo:  “Cooking” by Scabeater – https://flic.kr/p/RczHsE

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