March is National Nutrition Month, which has us thinking about healthier eating habits and how to achieve them.
We often hear the benefits of planning meals, prepping food, and including lots of colour on our plates. We’re told to go for the apple instead of a chocolate bar. Have a side salad instead of extra carbs. Reduce sugar intake. The list goes on.
However, while this is all valid advice, there is another aspect that may be missing. Companionship.
Eating is social.
Think about it, when was the last time you cooked a full meal for only yourself to enjoy? Who here goes out to dine at a restaurant for a proper meal (we’re not talking fast food) on their own?
Of course there are always exceptions, but for the most part, people don’t like to dine alone.
And for those that live by themselves – particularly boomers and seniors – their health suffers for it.
Poor nutrition can contribute to stress, tiredness, and the risk of developing other issues such as becoming overweight or obese, tooth decay and high blood pressure and cholesterol. This issue is particularly prominent among those fifty plus who are living alone due to divorce or the passing of a significant other, or those who’ve always lived alone.
Instead of taking the time to prepare a meal or dine out by themselves, they’re reaching for snack foods. After all, it’s easier to reach for some chips or crackers than prepare a meal that’s meant for four.
Living alone doesn’t mean you have to eat every meal alone.
In order to bring the social aspect back to the dinner table try scheduling more family dinners, find restaurants that have communal tables, and work to expand your circle of friends.
Every night does not need to be a dinner party. Have one or two friends come over and prep the meal together. Then sit and enjoy a full course meal. You can also meal prep with your adult children or grandkids, then divide up the food for ready-made dinners. In this scenario, the eating may not be social, but the cooking aspect sure will be.
Finding companions to share meals with can feel difficult. But there are many, many others in the same position. That’s where a service like Amintro comes in handy. You can safely find and connect with like-minded people in your community; people you can go for coffee with, join a club, get out on the town, and meet up for dinner.
Bring the social aspect back to the dining table, and then you will find healthier meals, friendship, and better overall health.
Written by Christine Tompa for Amintro