People Who Cook at Home Are Healthier Eaters

If you're constantly weighing the pros and cons of eating out versus eating in, you might be interested in a new study from The University of Washington — which provides some pretty convincing food for thought.

When you cook at home, you eat healthier and spend less money. | Photo by Bored Art.

According to Science Daily, researchers at the Seattle university interviewed 437 adults about their previous week's meal habits, and found that those who cooked at home ate meals that met more of the guidelines that define a healthy diet. And the more nights they ate at home, the healthier their diet. Plus, those who cooked at home spend less money on food, too.

The researchers used a gauge called the Healthy Eating Index, which measures whether a person's diet is giving them the right combination of nutrients, fruits, and vegetables. The study found that home-cooked dinners met more of the federal guidelines for a healthy diet. People who cooked three times per week showed a score of about 67 on the Healthy Eating Index; cooking six times per week had a score of about 74.

Our Ten Minute Szechuan Chicken has about 200 calories per serving, and it's ready in just 30 minutes. | Photo by Holiday Baker.

We know what you're thinking, though—who has time to cook at home every night?! We get it—and so do the researchers. Experts say we should try to balance cooking and eating out, and seek out restaurants that offer healthier meals. So, while you start making a list of spots that check off those boxes, we gathered some recipes for quick, healthy meals that should make things easier on busy nights.

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