I know, I know. It's easier to go to Tesco and get a ready meal than it is to cook from scratch. But have you ever done some sums to see how much your ready meals are costing you? You'd be surprised. What might also surprise you is how easy, fast and cheap it is to make your favourite meals at home. It's also generally healthier too. When you cook for yourself you know exactly what goes in your meals (and what doesn't!).
And why is this important I hear you cry? Well, eating well doesn't just keep you trim. Research shows that what we eat has a direct impact on not only brain function (i.e. how able you are to remember what your lecturer said in double statistics last week), but also your mood. "Studies have compared “traditional” diets, like the Mediterranean diet and the traditional Japanese diet, to a typical “Western” diet and have shown that the risk of depression is 25% to 35% lower in those who eat a traditional diet. Scientists account for this difference because these traditional diets tend to be high in vegetables, fruits, unprocessed grains, and fish and seafood, and to contain only modest amounts of lean meats and dairy. They are also void of processed and refined foods and sugars, which are staples of the “Western” dietary pattern."
Aside from your health, it's a lot more cost effective to cook from scratch than it is to buy ready meals or eat out. And make sure you check and compare own brands to branded food items because in blind taste tests, people often can't taste the difference. Look out for The Student Welfare Advice Team who often do a blind taste test experiment at events like the Wellbeing Festival and Student Success Festivals.
Concerned that you or a loved one has an unhealthy attitude towards food? Check out NHS resources and BEAT, an eating disorders charity. If you or your loved one are MDX students, don't forget about support available within the Counselling and Mental Health Service and the Care and Concern procedures (links on the homepage).