There are many perks to being in a relationship – a guaranteed new year’s kiss, someone to vent to after a rough week, and a plus one to bring along to those awkward family gatherings.
Skip past the initial dating phase, and suddenly your Friday nights now involve trackpants and snuggling on the couch with a good movie and pizza. Contentment has kicked in. But can falling into the comfort of a relationship be negatively impacting your health?
Research suggests that those in romantic relationships may be more likely to gain weight than their single counterparts. For example, a large Australian study published in PLoS ONE in 2018 found that couples were less likely to be within a normal weight range than singles.
Couples tend to adopt similar health habits – for better or for worse. Larger portions sizes, eating out or ordering takeaway more frequently, watching more TV, skipping the gym to spend more time together and drinking more alcohol are a handful of the common ways healthy habits can slip.
Any of these sound familiar? Don’t stress – coupling up doesn’t need to kill your healthy habits. And with a partner in crime to motivate you, creating a healthier lifestyle can be easier than you think.
Here are some simple steps to get set on the right path.
I know, you’d rather spend your time doing anything but deciding what’s on the menu for the week ahead. But meal planning is essential for preventing poor food choices. Taking the time to come up with recipes and do a bulk grocery shop saves time during the week and means you’re less likely to get takeaway on the way home.
If you’re struggling to find recipes, you could try one of the many popular services that now deliver pre-prepped ingredients. It will take the hard work out of meal times and give you new ideas.
MORE: Meal planning made easy