I know there are many people out there who can’t boil water or make toast but for weight loss knowing how to cook can make losing the weight and keeping it off much more enjoyable.
Know what you eat. You can be surprised in what actually is in some of your takeout or at your favorite sit-down restaurant. If you are lucky enough to find nutritional information about your latest meal you are most likely to be very surprised. When you are cooking your own food you control the ingredients that go into it, whether it be quality grass-fed beef or fresh organic vegetables you know exactly what is going into your pan and eventually into your stomach.
Find new or adjust existing your recipes. When you get your box of beef and broccoli there easily could be some added sugar, maybe some corn starch to thicken the sauce, top that with 2000mg of sodium you are bound to get bloated. Now when you can choose and adjust your ingredients you can take techniques like rendering down your sauce to thicken or use a little artificial sweetener to create your own delicious low carb poor man’s version of beef and broccoli.
Given the large number of recipe databases and niche forums on the internet it is easy to find a recipe for any item you may be craving. If you are on a particular diet (Low Carb, Gluten-Free, Low Fat) throw in those keywords and you are more than likely to find a modified version of that recipe and with a little of observation you can learn how to modify existing recipes yourself with a little trial and error.
Save some money. With a little practice you can start creating some delicious meals that prove to be as good if not better than “the competition” for a fraction of the cost even using fresh quality ingredients.
Avoiding processed foods. Though I do find processed foods convenient and having accurate nutritional information makes it very easy to track. The problem is many of these foods contain very inexpensive ingredients (corn syrup, enriched white flour, etc.) as well as chemicals to increase their shelf life. This results in a product that might taste ok and provide adequate calories but with very little nutritional content. Making similar foods yourself you can replace these cheap ingredients with quality nutritious one for an even lower price.
Ok you may be thinking, “this is great…but I still do not know how to cook.” There are plenty of cooking shows on TV, personally I do not actually use too many of their recipes but a great way to learn techniques which may be simply mentioned in the recipes you are finding. One in particular I have learned quite a bit from is Good Eats.