Food and MS: Tips for Cooking
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buffet of various leftovers. Take advantage of leftovers by serving a second meal or reworking them into another dish. This is planning for those days when the fatigue takes over or a symptom is developing and preparing dinner is just too much.
Get help cutting
Enlist a friend or helper, use handy cutting tools, or purchase “pre-cut” food. If you do a lot with cubed or diced meat or vegetables, keep some in small containers or storage bags. It will be easy to take out ingredients ready to use and save the time and effort needed to prepare them.
Pay attention to nutrition
You can still keep yourself as healthy as possible by paying attention to proper nutrition. Eat well and feel well.
Set up cooking flow
Set up ingredients, cooking utensils, and even cleaning areas to reduce extra movement. An efficient set up leads to an efficient process. Cooking is easier, the cook uses minimal energy, and the meal is quickly prepared.
Get ingredients ready Before starting to prepare the meal, prepare the ingredients. All ingredients can be cut and stored until needed. Jars, cans, boxes and bags can be opened and all measurements can be made before the cooking begins. Again, this makes the job easier and saves energy for the cook.** Measure once** How many times have you heard “measure twice, cut once?” This is not construction so that rule does not apply. Measure everything that needs it at one time. Start early enough with all of your measured ingredients. If everything is ready, your meal is practically done. The preparation method is simplified, saving time and energy. ** Try something new** New dishes, ingredients, cooking methods and recipes are all worth consideration. Trying new tastes and new methods can be fun and adventurous. Give it a try and you may come up with a fantastic new recipe. ** Consider pre-packaged or frozen items**
Use frozen meals packed as they are or add ingredients for your own flair. Frozen dinners have greatly improved since Swanson’s 1953 effort. Frozen ingredients can be easily steamed in the microwave. There is surprising variety in product quality and price.
My goal is preparation in 30 minutes or less, and that is without rushing. Of course, there are exceptions for special occasions. You and your health are more important than any particular meal, so do not hesitate if you have to take a break and try again tomorrow. I may have said it more than I have to, but it is important to take care of yourself and rest.
Next I will talk about shopping and then about what is good for MSers to eat.
Notes and Links:
Cooking with Arthritis - many of us can benefit from these tips