Sometimes, when people feel stressed out, it can become a habit to order out from a restaurant or reach for the junk food, but this can be an unhealthy way to cope. However, while food can be a Band-Aid for much larger issues, cooking can be an excellent activity to help you improve your mental health even while you are on the move, and this article will show you why you should dedicate some time to it.
It Provides Good Nutrition
One of the main benefits of cooking is that it can have much better nutritional content than getting food elsewhere. This is especially true when it comes to junk food, which can cause your mood and energy levels to spike then come crashing down.
Your brain is your most important and powerful organ, and without proper care, it can’t function as intended, and this can make you feel moodier, more tired, and can cause you to feel more stressed out and anxious.
By cooking your own meals, you have full control of the ingredients, and it’s also a good opportunity to be more mindful of what you eat, and this can be useful for weight management, which can help improve your self-esteem.
It’s A Creative Outlet
Many people don’t look at cooking as something that’s creative in the same way as music, art, or writing and other related activities, but it certainly is, and it can be a way for you to express yourself and destress.
This is because creative hobbies allow people to let loose and use their imagination, and while you will most likely be following a recipe in many cases, you are not limited to them.
People can improve their cooking skills by learning what works well and what doesn’t, and therefore, there is a sense of discovery and trying to achieve perfection. After all, master chefs can make ordinary dishes their own through creativity, but it took some trial and error in the process and this makes cooking an art.
It Can Provide Structure
Cooking can be a spontaneous activity, but it also often takes some planning and to really reap the mental health benefits of this activity, it’s important to make it a part of your daily routine.
When you start cooking on a regular basis, this can eliminate some of the unpredictability in your life that can be contributing to your stress. From planning your meals and gathering the ingredients, cooking makes you get organized.
However, routine and organization skills don’t need to start and end at cooking at home, and more than likely what you learn can be applied to other aspects of your life.
The act of cooking demands your attention and patience, which can distract you from your stressors, but when you make something that can please you and others, it makes it a fulfilling experience and something you can look forward to each day.
It can give a sense of accomplishment that other things in your life might not be providing for you; each meal you make is a goal that you achieve, and this can make it easier to stay motivated.
Overall, cooking has the ability to make you feel calm and empowered at the same time, which is why it should be considered if you’re looking to achieve better mental health.
Cooking & Therapy
Although cooking can be an amazing outlet that you can do for yourself and others and it can have numerous benefits on your health and wellbeing, it shouldn’t be a replacement for therapy.
Instead, cooking is meant to be a supplement to professional advice, if stress and other mental health issues are creating problems in your life. By working with a therapist, you can learn essential coping skills that you can use everywhere while you are out and about.
Therapy doesn’t need to be far away from your comfort zone, and MyTherapist makes that possible by letting you connect to licensed professionals online. Online counseling and therapy services are convenient and affordable, making it a stress-free experience. You can also take advantage of free mental health, which can be found at: https://www.mytherapist.com/advice/.
If life is getting overwhelming, cooking can help you cope with stress, and hopefully, this article has shown you why it can just do that. From nutrition to providing a sense of accomplishment, cooking is therapeutic, and perhaps, it will be a regular part of your routine so you can get the most out of its benefits.
Marie Miguel has been a writing and research expert for nearly a decade, covering a variety of health- related topics. Currently, she is contributing to the expansion and growth of a free online mental health resource with BetterHelp.com. With an interest and dedication to addressing stigmas associated with mental health, she continues to specifically target subjects related to anxiety and depression.