It’s said that the kitchen is the heart of a home, so you want yours to be a space that is comfortable, functional, stylish, and healthy. If you are in need of healthy kitchen tips, just keep reading to find out how you can improve your kitchen and your health.
Deep Clean Your Kitchen
Maintaining a clean kitchen is one of the best healthy kitchen tips. Even if you routinely clean your counters and cooking surfaces, your kitchen is full of places for tiny bits of food, dirt, and other debris to hide. You could hire a professional cleaning service to deep clean your kitchen for you, that way you can enjoy a clean and healthy kitchen without any work on your part.
If you prefer to clean your kitchen yourself, or with your family, here are a few helpful tips. Before you get to work deep cleaning, you want to make sure all of your dishes are clean and put away, and you want to take a few moments to clear your countertops of any clutter. You will want to have plenty of counter space to place items as you pull them out of your cupboards and fridge.
To really do a deep clean, you will want to pull all food from your pantry and your fridge. Go through expiration dates to make sure your food is still safe to eat, and toss anything that has expired. When you have your cabinets and fridge empty, take time to thoroughly wipe down the surfaces before you put anything back into them.
As part of a deep clean you will also want to make sure you clean all appliances, and clean under things like your refrigerator and your oven. For a thorough clean, you will also want to be sure you get any drawers in your kitchen as well as wipe down walls and make sure the floor is spotless.
Reorganize Your Fridge and Pantry
As previously mentioned, your fridge and pantry are places you must clean for a healthy kitchen. If you have been considering upgrading your kitchen with a new kitchen cabinet installation, this stage of your cleaning is the perfect opportunity. To properly clean your refrigerator and cabinets, you will need to remove everything in them.
Again, checking expiration dates is one of the best healthy kitchen tips. It is way too easy to let condiments sit for too long in your fridge, so as you are cleaning, make sure you pay attention to the expiration dates and remove items that have expired.
Once you have your entire fridge cleaned and wiped down, including the exterior, you can begin reorganizing. If you want a more structured and organized fridge, consider the use of storage bins. There are a wide range of plastic bins available from those designed to hold eggs and soda cans to larger containers to store condiments or snacks that have already been portioned.
Just as there are a number of storage items available for your fridge, there are also items for your pantry. Consider glass containers to hold dry items like rice, beans, and pasta. You can also use canisters to hold baking ingredients like flour and sugar. If you do not want to spend money to organize, reuse old boxes you have around the house and use those in the place of plastic storage bins.
Make Changes for Optimal Comfort
If you prepare food nightly, you know how uncomfortable standing on a hard kitchen floor can be. Between meal preparation and cooking to clean up and dishes, you might find yourself on your feet for an hour or more. The good news is that you can make small changes to your kitchen that will improve its comfort level.
Many kitchens have tile flooring, and while that is beautiful, it is not always the most comfortable. Choosing a comfortable anti-fatigue mat is one way to maintain comfort while spending hours standing on your feet. An anti-fatigue mat can be made from a number of different materials ranging from rubber to wood and is designed to increase comfort and reduce fatigue caused by standing for long periods of time.
Another change you can make to increase the comfort of your kitchen is to focus on the seating. If you have an island that doubles as a table from time to time, consider placing stools with cushions as your seating option.
Write Out Grocery Lists Ahead of Time
One thing health and nutrition experts agree on when it comes to healthy kitchen tips is the use of grocery lists. Why? Grocery lists help you plan your meals so you have less incentive to buy foods on impulse just because they look good.
Grocery lists can help you save money. By sticking to your list, you can eliminate buying food you do not need. Additionally, buying food at random means you run the risk of having food you are not going to eat taking up space in your fridge and spoiling.
Another reason experts suggest making a grocery list is that it makes you think about what you are going to eat. By being mindful and planning meals ahead of time, you are less likely to make unhealthy decisions.
Prioritize Healthy Meals and Overall Well-Being
When it comes to healthy kitchen tips, one of the most obvious is actually prioritizing your health through healthy meals and taking care of yourself mentally and physically. Eating healthy does not have to be difficult or expensive, and there are a number of small steps you can take to improve your diet.
The first thing you will want to do is significantly cut down on processed foods and make sure your kitchen is stocked with fresh fruits and vegetables. Next, start saying no to soda. Not only does all of the extra sugar in soda wreak havoc on your diet, but it also negatively impacts your teeth, resulting in the need for additional dental care. Rather than keeping chips on hand for when you want a snack, try popcorn, whole wheat crackers, and nuts.
When you are at the grocery store getting your foods, try this one technique experts suggest for eating healthier. Most grocery stores have the majority of their processed foods in the interior aisles. To start eating healthier, shop the perimeter of the grocery store. Author James Clear told Forbes, “only shop on the outer perimeter of the store. This is usually where the healthy food lives: fruits, vegetables, lean meats, fish, eggs, and nuts. If you only shop the outer ring, then you’re more likely to buy healthy foods.”
Another bonus of eating more fresh foods as opposed to processed foods is that your overall health will improve. You know healthy eating is a great way to maintain your weight and improve your physical health, but it can also have a major impact on your skin. When your body is getting the required vitamins and nutrients that it needs, your dermatologist will ensure you that your skin will improve naturally.
Keep Healthy Snacks Handy
It is common sense that if you do not keep a kitchen stocked with unhealthy food, you will not eat unhealthy food. Buying fresh, healthy snacks and keeping them easily accessible is one of the best healthy kitchen tips.
Many nutrition experts recommend thorough meal preparation on the weekend to make eating healthier during the week easier. You can do the same thing with your snacks. Nuts are a healthy snack to have on hand, but if you sit down with the entire container, it is too easy to eat three or four servings at one time. Portion out your snacks according to serving size, then keep them in sealed containers in your fridge or on your countertops.
By keeping healthy snacks already portioned stocked in your kitchen, you will avoid the temptation to grab something unhealthy, like a bag of chips, to save the time you would otherwise have to spend preparing your snack. Just a few ideas for good foods to keep on hand include fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, Greek yogurt, and dark chocolate.
Add a Breakfast Nook or Sunroom
When it comes to healthy kitchen tips, you may not immediately consider things like a breakfast nook or a sunrom, but these additions can be a great idea for your space. You can use your breakfast nook or a table in your sunroom for food preparation, which is one way you can reduce the discomfort of standing for long periods of time while you prepare your meals.
In addition to more prep space, these options also free up some counter space so that your countertops are less cluttered. It has been proven that clutter contributes to anxiety and depression, so keeping your kitchen clean is a definite benefit for your mental health.
If you are not prepared to construct your own breakfast nook or sunroom, get in touch with a local sunroom contractor. With a reliable and reputable contractor handling your breakfast nook or small sunroom installation, you will not have to worry about weeks of inconvenience.
Consider Repainting and Redecorating
Kitchen remodeling is one of those healthy kitchen tips that may not be immediately obvious, but repainting and redecorating can help you improve the overall health of your kitchen environment. Ask interior designers what they recommend as the easiest way to influence the atmosphere of a room, and most of them will respond by saying the colors you choose. Colors evoke emotional responses, so planning a muted or warm color for your kitchen can be a way to keep an emotionally healthy kitchen.
Colors like red might be fun, but they can also be aggressive and lead to agitation. Instead, look for colors like cream, gray, or blue. Light greens, blues, and lavenders are also colors that create a calm, soothing atmosphere.
Lessen Your Garbage and Start Recycling
Recycling is one of the most important healthy kitchen tips when you consider environmental impact. In addition to making your weekly garbage collection easier, reducing waste and dedicating time to recycling is a significant way in which you can reduce your carbon footprint.
If you are new to recycling, remember to give yourself grace if you make mistakes. For those with gardens or plants and flowers outdoors, another way to recycle from your kitchen is to start a compost heap. Composting not only reduces your garbage, but it provides excellent soil to use in your plants.
Construct an Outdoor Kitchen
What is better than enjoying your morning coffee surrounded by sunshine? Homeowners have considered constructing an outdoor kitchen one of the most popular home improvement projects for the last several years. Why?
Outdoor kitchens are the perfect place to entertain family and friends. If you have ever entertained guests with a summer barbeque, you know how frustrating it can be to constantly run from the indoors to the outdoors as the food is ready. With an outdoor kitchen, you will not have to worry about that, and you can do the cooking without feeling like you are neglecting your guests by spending so much time running back and forth.
Want another reason to consider an outdoor kitchen? According to Zillow, homes that featured an outdoor kitchen sold for as much as 30% more than expected. While creating your kitchen will require an investment, it is a sound one and one that will bring you a significant return on your investment.
Healthy kitchen tips do not have to be overwhelming. Remember that improving your health, both mental and physical, is a journey and there will be mistakes along the way. By simply making the choice to create a healthier kitchen for you and your family, you are well on your way to improving your overall well-being. Keep healthy snacks on hand, plan your meals and grocery list before you go shopping, and take care to keep your kitchen clean and clutter-free.