We’re trying something new this month. Something we hope you will be as excited as we are to start! We’re calling it the Eat at Home Challenge – a 10 day series that will hopefully inspire, educate, and radically change the way you eat, at least for a couple of weeks that is.
Each day you will find a new topic open for discussion. You will also find a daily homework assignment designed to get you thinking or eating in a new way, along with a few helpful tips. Expect to be challenged, but remember to have fun! Afterall, if its not fun, you probably won’t stick with us very long!
Along the way, we hope you will share your thoughts, triumphs, and challenges with us. Each day you can share your responses in the comments of the posts or tweet over the next 10 days using the hashtag #eatathomechallenge.
Are you ready to get started? Let’s go!
day 1 –> Welcome to the Challenge!
What does eat at home really mean? Does it mean that for the next 10 days we should call in sick to work? Does it mean never leaving the house to eat? Absolutely not! For the purpose of this challenge, eating at home means the food we eat throughout the day only comes from our kitchen. That may mean packing a lunch for work, eating dinners at home or at a friends house, or even packing snacks for an upcoming business trip, but it definitely doesn’t mean you can’t leave your home to live your normally scheduled life! On the contrary, we want your foods from home to fit nicely into your regular day.
What are the benefits of eating at home? Over the last few decades we’ve seen a major shift in the way Americans eat. Thanks to overly busy schedules filled with work, after school events, hours of homework, and downtime when we can get it, meal times have become less of an event and more of a thing we have to do in between everything else we have going on in our busy lives. Unfortunately, this means more meals away from home and settling for snacks that are easily available in vending machines and convenience stores. This also means that we often sacrifice nutritional quality for convenience. I think its time we change that!
Study after study have shown the benefits of eating meals at home. Families who eat together typically consume more nutrients on a regular basis and have children who do better in school. Additionally, children who eat most meals at home tend to like fruits and vegetables more than those who don’t. Even if you don’t have kids, eating from home can have similar benefits. Chances are you will eat more nutrient-rich meals and snacks which will fuel your body so that you have more energy throughout the day. And with our crazy schedules, who couldn’t use a little more energy?
Eating from home can also be a great way to save money. Think about it. How much are you paying each day for that cup of specialty coffee or that snack bar from the vending machine? Often you pay more for these items when convenience is involved. Although eating from home does take a little more work and thought, it may be worth the financial benefits alone.
Will there be challenges? Of course! In fact, the word “challenge” is even in the title of this series. Why? Because if you live a life that is full of activity, there will be moments over the next 10 days where grabbing something from a vending machine, a gas station, or a fast food restaurant will seem incredibly alluring. You might even forget to plan a meal or snack. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Even if this challenge means you increase the amount of meals you eat from home one day a week, that is still a positive step in the right direction. We’re not aiming for perfection here, just progress. Do your best, keep your chin up, and remember the real reason we are doing this.
Also, you may find this challenge difficult if grocery shopping or meal planning is a relatively new concept for you. Afterall, healthy eating is probably 80% planning and 20% follow through. If you need help with setting up a grocery list, be sure to check out today’s homework below. Additionally, you can always check out our diet coaching services if you need a little extra help getting off on the right foot.
day 1 homework –> Read the following article: Meal Planning Made Easy by Nutrition Expert Natalia Stastenko, RD for a few online tools that might be helpful this week. Then, plan out your shopping list for the week. Start with the meals you want to prepare for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Then write down the ingredients you need to make these meals possible. Next, add in any healthy snacks you want to include. Make sure that they are easy to prep and can be taken on the road or stored in your desk at work. Once you have your meals and list prepared, share a few of your meal ideas with us either in the comments below or on your own blog. We can’t wait to hear what you plan to eat this week!
If you are participating in the challenge this week, be sure to use our blog badge below: