Cooking, for some, is a means to an end. For others, it’s a passion.
It is no secret that food helps people bond. As a couple, cooking is an activity that allows you to connect on an intimate level and strengthen your relationship. It also has benefits beyond what you make and how much time you spend together.
At whatever stage in your relationship, getting to spend time alone with your significant other is always good. Instead of a normal dinner, cooking together is a good change of pace and is interactively engaging.
“There are not many things that expose the core of our humanity like the creation and consumption of food,” says Dr Mike Fenster, cardiologist and author of the book The Fallacy of the Calorie. “Few such acts bring people together as fully engaging in the art of cooking (and eating).”
Cooking together can also be really intimate. Preparing a meal is a multisensory experience. “Preparing food and then savoring it is akin to foreplay and great sex. There is a primal sensuality inherent in it. Gathering the ingredients is like the flirtation. Chopping and grinding is like making out. Cooking the food becomes the foreplay and saving the best for last, eating the food, becomes the penetration and ecstasy of the orgasm,” says Dr Paul Hokemeyer, a family therapist.
Learning New Things
Taking on a new skill is always exciting and what’s better than learning a skill together? You both can improve your kitchen skills by watching, doing, and learning—whether it’s how to filet a fish, or understand which knife is best used on vegetables. The goal is to learn together and make something delicious. You will learn about culinary terms and techniques and also how cooking and food matters to your partner on a deeper level. What is his/her favorite meal? Who taught him/her to cook? What is their biggest disaster in the kitchen? What are their cooking habits?
Cooking is the easiest way to expand your knowledge individually, while growing as a couple. “Food represents love and it’s important to learn what your partner enjoys in the kitchen,” says private chef Lula Brown. Trying new things is also a great way to bring some excitement into possibly a boring relationship.
“Couples cooking together build strong relationships. It has been shown to reduce the incidence cardiovascular disease and improve the survival of those who do suffer an event,” says Dr Mike.
When you cook together, you’re likely to opt for healthy options—less butter and oil, bake instead of fry, and favor fresh over packaged food. You can choose your own ingredients, remove unhealthy fats and feel better about eating healthy. When you start making one healthy improvement in your life, and your spouse is doing the same thing, it gives you another reason to bond and makes you want to be healthy and happy together. Studies have shown that if you are healthy together as a couple, chances are your relationship is going to be happy, too.
“It’s also beneficial for couples to eat similar diets so they have the same energy levels and are both healthy or both actively working towards being healthy together,” says Lula.
Being A Team
When cooking together, you get a good representation of how you work together as a team. You decide who does what tasks; you maneuver around each other, and solve problems together. It is all about learning to rely on each other and working towards a common goal. “You can support each other, cheer each other on and provide honest feedback on what works for you and what doesn’t,” Lula adds.