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Cooking Healthy During the COVID Crisis Doesn't Mean Sacrificing Taste


Reposted: April 22,2020

Do you still want to create healthy, tasty and satisfying meals?

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Photo by Krisztina Papp on Unsplash

Have you managed to remain healthy during this global pandemic crisis? If you have, knock on wood, thank your lucky stars, or whichever of the deities that you pray to.

With more than one and a half million people having already contracted the Corona Virus; consider yourself blessed. One of the things we want to keep in mind during these trying times, is the need to start, or continue eating healthy. For some, it may not be as easy to do, as it was pre-COVID-19, but that doesnít mean itís impossible. Like everything else in life, when it comes to eating healthy, we do what we can.

I wrote this article a while ago, long before the COVID crisis, but the basis for the information has not changed. If anything, the need for eating healthy has intensified. I hope you enjoy the post J

It goes without saying that it can be a real challenge to come up with healthy meals for your family. It took me some time to discover that cooking healthy doesnít mean you have to sacrifice the taste. I came to understand this by tuning in and viewing some of the popular cooking shows on television.

Lack of Healthy Food

Growing up, I was always a picky eater and whatís even worse, I hated vegetables. This wasnít a big issue, considering the fact that the lack of healthy food was the least of my worries. I had a hard and unhappy childhood, including while in foster care. If this hadnít been the case, maybe I might have turned into a healthier eater. But as it was, there was no one in my life who cared enough to make me eat healthy.

Though Iíve never been a big eater, or one who uses food as an escape, Iíve also never been big on diversity. Once upon a time, when I found something that I enjoyed eating, I simply made a habit of eating the same thing all the time. Clearly, this is no way to expand your palate and help you appreciate new foods. My poor taste buds were so neglected! By the time I ended up in a happy household with a fairly normal family, my eating habits were pretty set in stone, and they rarely included vegetables. Enter the Food Network!

Changing Poor Eating Habits

For me, learning to eat healthier meant understanding that my poor habits took time to develop, so my success would take time and repeated efforts.

Like many of the other tough challenges in life, changing your poor eating habits is not an easy thing to do, nor should you expect a change overnight. In my case, I never even realized how bad an eater I was, until I started watching cooking shows on the Food Network. Initially, I sat and watched them with my sister (who is what Wendy Williams calls a ďfoodieĒ).

At first, I simply found the shows funny and entertaining, but I had no intentions of trying any of the recipes. But eventually, that changed, and gradually, so did my poor eating habits. I wonít lie, I still donít eat enough veggies, but I eat a whole lot more than I used to. Since I appreciate my vegetables more, I also treat them better when it comes to storing and preparation, so I throw away a lot less produce.

Healthy Eating Habits

Healthy eating habits can mean different things to different people. Vegetarians, Vegans, Gluten-free, Juicers; you name it, and thereís a group of folks who swear by the dietary benefits. For me, learning to eat healthier meant finding ways to incorporate vegetables into the dishes I love. Trust me, this is easier said than done.

Developing healthy eating habits doesnít just magically happen just because you want it to. It takes lots of effort. I wasnít anywhere near successful until I started to understand that my poor habits took time to develop, so my success would take time and repeated efforts. So I stopped beating myself up whenever I found myself sitting down with a full plate that didnít include not one vegetable. As far as trying a new dish of any kind, that just wasnít happening.

Cooking Healthy for Others

The one thing that eventually saved me and put me on the right path was when I decided to try preparing some new dishes just for my household to eat, not me. Normally, when I prepared vegetables or something I didnít like, I didnít even bother to try eating it myself.

My family members all eat vegetables with no problem, and theyíll try whatever I set before them, mostly. They seemed to love my newfound cooking talents. Once I started trying out more and more television recipes (the simple ones that seemed appealing to me), I was curious to see how they turned out, so naturally I began tasting the dishes. Thatís how I finally began preparing healthy, yet tasty dishes.

To this day, I love to watch shows like Pioneer Woman, Beat Bobby Flay, and others that entertain and teach cooking at the same time. Of course, not all the food shows or cooks focus specifically on healthy foods, but I still pick up pointers about how to prepare tasty dishes that at least include some healthy ingredients.

Healthy & Tasty Foods

I believe that when people donít like what they are forcing themselves to eat, they wonít always eat like they should. If this is the case, it will defeat the whole purpose of healthy eating. So when youíre trying to eat something that you typically wouldnít eat, I find it becomes more enticing when you add it to something you do like. A perfect example is broccoli and cheese, my all-time favorite vegetable. I was a middle-aged adult before I started eating and enjoying broccoli, all thanks to a little cheese.

You and your family members or household want more than just a nutritious meal. Meals should also be appealing to your taste buds. Believe it or not, this is actually possible. Your healthy recipes can include meats, sauces and other tasty foods, along with the vegetables, grains and fruits that are good for them.

Learning to prepare and cook your meals in a healthier fashion will enable you to provide healthy meals for your family, without ever sacrificing the taste!

Healthy Cooking Styles

Are you ready to take the lead in preparing healthier meals? Young or old, youíll notice a change for the better when you do. So the question is, what makes a healthy meal?

Many factors apply, including the ingredients you are using, as well as the method that you choose to prepare your meal. There are a number of different ways for you to cook and eat healthy. Notice these 5 healthy cooking solutions below.

  • Roasting
  • Baking
  • Grilling
  • Broiling
  • Stir frying

Using the above cooking methods to prepare meals for you and your family will benefit you in many ways. These cooking styles help to cut down on things like cholesterol, and also saturated and trans fat. At the same time, more of the nutritional value of the food is being retained in the food when you use these healthy cooking methods.

In addition to the above cooking styles, you can also choose other healthy methods like stewing, braising and poaching. All these methods are a healthy alternative to frying your food.

Now that Iím more familiar with these creative ways to prepare healthy food, and Iím more open to trying new tastes and flavors, I donít think Iíll ever stop cooking healthy again.


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