A healthy night in: the key to romance this Valentine’s Day, according to the Dietitians Association of Australia.
The nation’s nutrition experts recommend spoiling your loved one this Valentine’s Day with a nutritious home-cooked meal and a healthy lifestyle change.
Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA) Spokesperson, Maria Packard, suggests swapping chocolates and flowers, or an expensive meal out, for fresh groceries and a healthy home-cooked dinner.
‘Cooking a meal together at home is a great way to have a romantic, and healthy, night in. You’ll avoid the crowded restaurants and just spend time with each other,’ said Ms Packard, an Accredited Practising Dietitian.
The call comes as DAA launches Australia’s Healthy Weight Week (15-21 February) which aims to inspire Australians to make simple changes towards smart eating, and this year follows Valentine’s Day.
According to Ms Packard, research suggests that supporting your partner to eat a healthier diet can benefit your own healthy eating efforts.
‘Healthy eating can be the ultimate ‘couple activity’. Explore new ingredients and recipes together, while at the same time supporting your partner to live a longer and healthier life – and getting those same benefits for yourself,’ said Ms Packard.
She said there are many ways that supporting your partner’s healthy eating efforts can help them change their habits.
‘Firstly, you are changing their food environment. A positive environment at home can be as simple as having healthy food in the cupboard, and leaving the not-so-healthy food at the supermarket. So try asking your partner which healthy foods they would like on the shopping list.
‘You’ll also be increasing their confidence in their ability to make dietary changes, so pretty powerful stuff. And creating a healthy meal together at home gives you more control over what you are eating – you can choose the right portion sizes and include healthy ingredients,’ said Ms Packard.
DAA is also calling on Aussie blokes to take notice this Valentine’s Day, as a recent survey found the majority enjoy cooking but many are not cooking often enough1.
‘The survey found 73% of guys like cooking a lot, but this isn’t translating into time in the kitchen, with just one in four (24%) cooking at home twice a week or more. So we want to see guys use Valentine’s Day 2016 to don an apron and turn up the heat on their relationship and their health,’ said Ms Packard.
DAA is not stopping there – they want a healthy Valentine’s Day meal to be the start of a healthier lifestyle together.