“What do you want for dinner?”

“I don’t know, what do you want?”

“We don’t have any food…should I run to the store and cook tonight?”

“Nah, we can just order in…or try that new Thai place down the street.”

How often does this conversation occur in your day-to-day life? The answer for most of us is…more often than we’d like to admit. But as the number of people opting for eating out increases, so does our nation’s average pant size.

The hassles of planning, cooking and cleaning-up meals at home are less appealing than a quick restaurant trip. The trade-off, of course, is not living your best life. Food health is a major concern in today’s word with obesity rates on the rise. But a little-known secret is that your kitchen design is the key to your healthy lifestyle success.

Set you and your family up for success by making sure your kitchen area is stylized for you. You have to want to use it, after all! Don’t settle for a cookie-cutter kitchen style that will having you running for the take-out menu every night.

But…how’s that done? If you aren’t an architect, how do you even know where to start in designing the kitchen that matches the way you cook?

Step 1: Prepare your layout

Have you ever walked into a restaurant’s kitchen? The layout reflects this simple work zone structure: prep work, cooking, cleaning, and storage.

You, too, can prepare your kitchen area for smooth sailing and less back-tracking by sectioning into zones. Your preparation zone should have ample countertop space and be placed close to the stove. Make sure that a trash or recycling receptacle is close as well. Your storage zone (where plates, dishes, and containers are kept) should be close to your cleaning zone for easy unloading of the dishwasher.

Also consider storing cooking accessories in the zones they will most be used in. This means having knives and cutting boards close to the prep zone and pots and pans near the cooking zone.

Redesigning your kitchen layout helps you to spend less time stressing over timing and prep and more time enjoying the meal with your family. Say goodbye to the “I don’t have enough time” excuse.

Step 2: Mix together some helpful appliances

Cooking is only complicated when you don’t have the correct tools. But with the perfect appliances for your lifestyle, wants and needs, you’ll constantly be trying to find excuses to whip up new recipes!

Today’s appliances can easily integrate technology that adds convenience to your cooking. Smart fridges incorporate WiFi-enabled touch screens so you can create a shopping list and send it to your smart device without even opening the door. Seriously—if you don’t feel like running to the store to buy some extra veggies, you can order right from your fridge!

In the mood for a cup of coffee? Save money and calories by avoiding those tempting baked goods at your nearest coffee shop by

eating in. WiFi-controlled coffee makers will have your hot beverage of choice ready for you at a moment’s notice.

It’s okay if you feel like you just can’t master the art of cooking. There are thousands of healthy and delicious recipes that require you to simply mix a few ingredients together and set in the oven to “bake.” So if you’re all about the basic changes that facilitate the less-than-chef, having an up-to-date oven means even and correct cooking temperatures. You’ll never burn a dish again!

Once you have the bigger ticket items down, consider smaller items that will make cooking a breeze. Invest in a good spiralizer for delicious veggie noodles (a perfect alternative to high-carb pasta, break our hearts though it does). A blender or juicer is perfect for all your morning smoothie needs. And griddlers allow for the perfect char on your turkey burgers without the hour-long waits at your nearest burger joint.

Step 3: Fold in the perfect storage spots

Having a neat and tidy kitchen area reduces stress and anxiety, which—what a coincidence—are the two major causes in overeating. Cleaning up your space literally means brightening up your lifestyle.

When remodeling your kitchen, it’s helpful to think back to the work zones mentioned in step one. Plan out what appliances and tools will need to go in what area. Then, consider how much storage you’ll need.

A larger pantry will allow for more room for bulk items. You’ll never run out of healthy dry foods to snack on when you’re feeling a little peckish. Allow for deeper or wider cabinet spaces near your cooking zone to have your most-used pots and pans at the ready.

Take this kitchen remodeling time to declutter your pans and dishes! Your kitchen area should be efficient to your lifestyle. That Thanksgiving turkey dish isn’t used year-round, so you can stick that in the basement. And are you a professional baker? If the answer is no, you can most likely stick all those extra cake dishes down there, too.

Establishing enough room for all utensils, pots, pans, perishables and non-perishables is an absolute must. When everything has its own place, the clean-up time is cut in half. You can customize your cabinet sizes and compartments to perfectly fit any of your needs—you just need a little help from the pros to map it out.

Step 4: Give Capozzi a call and enjoy your new healthy space

Even if you’re not attempting to shed a few pounds, cooking at home means consuming less calories and more nutritional meals. Restaurants and take-outs are great for a treat, but don’t make up a healthy lifestyle.

Most of home renovation costs are spent on the kitchen, so you might as well get the most use out of it! Your wallet, stomach, and mood will benefit from a healthy kitchen remodel. You can spend more time cooking and bonding with family, enjoying a beautiful and practical layout, and never have to wonder if your food is perfectly prepared!

Ready for the remodel but not sure what to do? Give the experts at Capozzi a call. We’d love to help you improve your lifestyle with an on-trend design catered perfectly to your cooking wants and needs.