Did you know that families who eat meals together tend to enjoy better overall diets?
While there are benefits for adults and children, it’s worth noting that teens who dine with their families are more likely to eat fruits/veggies and less likely to eat fast food and sugary beverages. Sharing meals and conversing can build family togetherness.
But instead of gathering at the dinner table or on the sofa in the living room, how about preparing and eating meals as a family outside on the back deck?
Continue reading to see five reasons to cook and eat meals outside rather than inside.
1. Keep the Aromas Out of Your House
Whether you enjoy cooking fish, stinky tofu (yes, there is such a thing), or curried meats, you probably don’t want the aromas to linger indoors long after the meal. But even if you cook with open windows, strong-scented foods — while delightful to your tastebuds — might leave your home with all kinds of smells for a long while.
One option is to cook outdoors. You can use a BBQ, an outdoor kitchen, an outdoor pizza oven, or a grate over smoldering coals. There are tons of ways to cook outside. You can keep the strong, fragrant aromas outside, where they’ll quickly dissipate.
2. Enjoy Some Fresh Air
Don’t underestimate the benefits of getting fresh air every day. Fresh air will clean your lungs, reduce your heart rate, improve your mood, elevate your energy levels, and enhance your digestion — which is the icing on the cake after a tasty meal.
Staying indoors all the time means breathing in stale air. You and yours can enjoy fresh air and great food, as long as it’s not too hot or cold outside. If you have a patio cover offering protection from the elements, you can cook, eat, and socialize outside, even if the weather’s not ideal.
3. Socialize More
Spending more time outside also provides greater opportunities for socializing and communicating. It wasn’t that long ago that people were forced to scale back on the number of people they congregated with. Setting up tables and chairs on the patio deck is a great idea if you enjoy spending time with family and friends. You’ll have more space to accommodate people since you can use the kitchen table and the patio.
4. Encourage Active Lifestyle
Do you and yours enjoy going camping to enjoy the great outdoors in all its glory? Being outside on your back deck is wonderful. It’ll get you and yours out of the house. But you can up the ante by going someplace out in nature. You’ll be surrounded by trees, grass, and wildlife rather than houses, billboards, and retail establishments.
And instead of highways and roadways, you’ll see walking paths and hiking trails. As part of an active lifestyle, you and yours can enjoy cooking meals over an open fire, eating together, and growing closer.
5. Enjoy Higher Quality of Sleep
Spending time outside can also help regulate sleep patterns so you feel well-rested and refreshed when you wake up in the morning. Getting sufficient sunlight can help with melatonin. As it increases, your body will get a signal when it’s about time to prepare for bedtime. You and yours need to get enough quality sleep to function correctly throughout the day, and a chronic lack of sleep can lead to serious health complications. So, eating outside can improve your overall health and encourage quality shut-eye.
These are some of the reasons why eating outside makes sense. Whether for social, health, or other benefits, you and yours should consider outdoor family time.