Health Benefits of Home Cooked Meals

family eating meal together

Photo credit: USDA, Food and Nutrition Service

Concerned about the fat, sodium, or sugar in your food? Cooking meals at home instead of eating out or purchasing prepared foods may just be your ticket to good health.
Choose the Ingredients
Home-cooked food is usually lower in saturated fat, sodium, and sugar and higher in good nutrients like fiber, calcium, and iron. Why is this so? When you prepare food at home, you get to choose the ingredients. Select low-sodium ingredients like canned vegetables or beans. Choose fruits canned in their own juice or use fresh fruits and vegetables when in season.
Control Portion Sizes
We tend to eat larger portions when we eat out. Try using smaller plates to get right-size portions when eating meals at home.
Get Veggies and Fruits
Eating at home helps you make other healthy choices. Include more fruits and vegetables in main dishes, side dishes, or try fruit for dessert.
Source:  Why eat at home? eXtension Foundation