National Nutrition Week – the lessons to learn

So it is Day 5 of National Nutrition Week 2014.

I am still sticking to my challenge of cooking or preparing every meal for the whole week.

Check out some of the foods I have created below….

 

Tropical pancakes with mango and coconut

Tropical pancakes with mango and coconut

Ricotta ravioli with buttered spinach and flaked almonds

Ricotta ravioli with buttered spinach and flaked almonds

Chicken pot pie

Chicken pot pie

Single serve baked frittata

Single serve baked frittata

 

While National Nutrition Week is a great way for amateur food photographers to showcase their creative meals on Twitter and Instagram (me being one of them), there is a point to this whole event.

So what are the lessons to learn here?

1. Take control of your own health.

Be in charge of your health and lifestyle by controlling exactly what foods you nourish your body with. Make the most of the free recipes and nutrition advice available to you and start cooking!

2. Be aware of the ingredients that go into your body.

It’s all fun and games to sit down at a restaurant, have a chat with some company and then be provided with a yummy meal you didn’t have to put a moment of prep time into making.

But most of the time, foods that we eat at restaurants tend to be much higher in kilojoules/energy and also fat (why else do they taste so damn good?).

The beauty of making your own meals is that you chop up, measure out and add in the exact ingredients you want. No hidden nasties. Only ingredients where you control the amounts put in to your meals .

3. Learn to navigate the kitchen.

Not much of a cook? Well a challenge like this means it can be do-able (only goes for a week) and you can learn a thing or two about hanging out in the kitchen while you do it. Learn how to cook with meat, how much oil is enough to cook with and learn some culinary skills as you go.

If you feel really lost in the kitchen, just remember that the meal plan and instructions are provided to you – you don’t have to worry about how to make an apple berry strudel or honey soy noodles as the steps are all there for you to follow.

4. Save money by eating in.

A big part of eating out is the money spent on the food. Of course salmon on a bed of wild rice with asian greens from Miss Chu in South Yarra is amazing and yum. But it does cost money. And I have to admit that cooking this meal is just as easy when at home making it myself.

Also have a think about this: buying a big box of Uncle Toby’s oats, 1L of skim milk, five bananas, a bag of sultanas and a container of honey will cost you $20 from the supermarket. These ingredients can make a lovely, sweet and filling porridge dish for 5 days of breakfasts. Alternatively, you can use this $20 to buy one porridge dish from a Melbourne brunch cafe with very similar ingredients. This would only feed you breakfast for one day and this one breakfast is likely to include full fat dairy and whole lot of extra sugars added to it.

Just something to consider.

And something I should remind myself on a regular basis!

And with that I will sign off.

Happy cooking everyone!

– Jenna

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