Young people struggle to find time to make their own healthy food.
Home cooked meals scream traditional, family and organized. However, when it comes to the life of a busy millennial, traditional means whatever is fast and convenient to consume on-the-go.
It's evident that we are pampered and addicted to what is easily accessible to us. I’ll admit it; I know I’m spoiled when it comes to eating out. I’d much rather sit in a restaurant and order food that can be prepared for me than to come home after a long day of class and prepare my own meal. However, not only does this take extra money from me, but it also can put weight on me—even if I order healthy options—because I don’t truly know what is going in my food unless I make it myself.
According to the Washington Post, less than 60 percent of suppers served at home were actually cooked at home last year. This percentage also describes why obesity has risen in the United States. I know we’re spoiled and running to buy a meal is easier and less time consuming, but killing our pockets and our bodies is the negative side of our laziness.
“Most millennials are always in a rush to school or even work—they don’t have time to enjoy a decent meal,” says Grace Walton, a recent graduate of John Jay College of Criminal Justice, 22, when asked why she thinks millennials have veered away from home cooked meals.
Shariah Sweetney, a junior at Hampton University, 21, agreed with Walton when she was asked about home cooked meals dying. “Restaurants are just an easier option. Also, parents became okay with it, because it is easy for them to grab something to eat on their days off or on days they’re tired.”
It's not just about a lack of time when it comes to this issue. We are socialites in this age of social media. We love to go out and socialize over a meal or drinks and it is becoming the norm. For me, I know after a long day and a lot has happened, my best friend and I will go out to eat together and discuss our days because it is a different environment than going home to the apartment we share and discussing our day over a meal we prepared.
So the question now is simple: What do we do about this? Better yet, is there a solution? For myself, what works best is meal prepping. The objective for meal prepping is to have all of your meals for the week ready, so coming home and cooking everyday isn’t necessary. Usually on a Sunday, when homework is done, my best friend and I buy everything we need and cook it in one setting while separating it into containers. This allows us to save time during the week, save money and, of course, lose weight because our meals are more disciplined.
Turning to meal prep is one of the best options- watch those pockets fill up and that waist trim down. You don’t always have to revert to what’s easy.
Asia Milia Ware is a ESSENCE College Ambassador at Hampton University. She majors in Strategic Communications with a minor in English. She aspires to be a fashion editor-at-large and an entrepreneur. In her spare time she works out, writes, travels and styles outfits. You can follow her on Instagram @MissAsiaMilia. #EssenceSquad