Dinner for one
Statistics are telling us that more middle-aged women are living alone, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t look after yourself. Nourishing your mind and body begins with what you put in your mouth, it reflects in your gut health, your physical health and it directly affects your mental health too!
Shopping, cooking, and meal prepping for one can seem like a monumental waste of time, and the ease of grabbing a takeaway meal can seem quite appealing. So, what’s the downside?
We don’t always make the best choices when ordering takeaway, and most options are high in salt, sugar, additives, and preservatives. Sure, it might taste good at the time washed down with glass or two of wine, but the consequences, if done consistently can be disastrous for your health and especially the waistline.
Nothing tastes better than a home cooked meal and it doesn’t need to be complicated. A little planning once a week can ensure that your fridge and pantry is stocked with nutrient dense foods that can be prepared quickly while still satisfying your taste buds.
I like to visit my local organic farmers market every weekend to get all my fresh fruits and vegetables. This way you buy what is in season and that can dictate the meals for the week. A combination of salad items as well as veggies that can be baked, sir fried or eaten raw is ideal. The best thing is that farmers markets are a great place to try new things and speak to local growers. You may be inspired to start a vegie garden of your own or begin with a few herb pots.
Nourishment from food begins long before you sit down at the table. Obviously, the quality of the food is important, hopefully as much organic as possible, but also think about the environment in which you prepare your food.
Just because you are dining alone, doesn’t mean you can’t set the mood, light a candle, put on your favourite music, and enjoy the process. You are far more likely to enjoy your meal too and your digestion will thank you for it.
There is a lot to be said for the ‘slow food movement’, which began in Italy in the 1980’s, focusing on encouraging people to stop eating fast food and instead take the time to prepare and eat whole food the way mother nature intended. It also encourages connection, rebuilds relationships, and helps highlight what is truly important in our all-consuming digital world.
Whether you dine alone, with a partner or share with friends, there is no reason to take short cuts when it comes to eating quality food. Maintaining good habits will pay off big time as we age and is reflected in our vitality. This is like a mirror into our inner health and how we present to the world. Vitality affects our energy, metabolism, mood, skin, and genetic expression of inherited weaknesses.
So, before you take a short cut through the fast-food drive through, think about the vitality of the food on offer, and the consequence of your choice. Instead, go home, put on some music, make a salad, choose a protein, and nourish yourself. You will feel better, sleep better, and look better. There’s still room for a nice glass of wine, and suddenly dinner for one doesn’t sound so bad after all!
Written by Mona Hecke
Mona Hecke is a degree qualified Naturopath, nutrition specialist and health and wellness writer.
With over 20 years in the health industry, beginning with a focus on children and families, and a bestselling book ‘The Lunchbox Revolution’, Mona is now empowering women through education and conversation to take action and embrace change. Gut health, mindfulness, nutrition, hormones, and menopause are the topics that women want and need to know to create their healthy future.
Mona holds certifications in Lifestyle Coaching, Kinesiology, holistic herbal medicine, and nutrition.
A recognised leader in the health industry, Mona’s strong social media presence and passion for influencing change will continue to be a catalyst for health reform for the benefit of every Australian.