Eating with the family is healthier

We all know how good it is for children to eat with the family. I grew up thinking that this was the norm and did not realize how much this is not the case at all these days.

Many children eat very rarely with the family, some once a week and some hardly ever. It is often the fact that we don’t always have the time to eat altogether especially if parents work long hours (a fact of modern life) and we prefer to eat outside the home resorting to cheap and quick meals instead. These often lack on certain nutrients and vitamins and they are often too rich too.

A recent study conducted in America, where the average adult spends more than 40% of the household budget allocated to food for meals outside the home, states that lunches and family dinners are relegated to holidays and special occasions.

This bad habit seems to be spreading everywhere and contrary to what you might expect, the recession has not persuaded people to stay in and eat at home. You can still eat cheaply in fast food chains, cafes and takeaways.

Children can learn by the example set by parents and grandparents; if parents have a good diet and enjoy healthy eating, they too will follow through and learn to enjoy food in a proper healthy way. This will set their eating habits for life.

Also, and this is very interesting, it has been found that children who eat at home have a lowerΒ  body mass index than the ones who it out all the time. Children who eat at home have a higher intake of fruits, vegetables, foods rich in calcium and vitamins.

So, let’s make the effort and cook basic but nutritious meals for the sake of our children’s health and ours too!

eating with the family

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13 Responses to Eating with the family is healthier

  1. Ozlem's Turkish Table

    So true Alida; as with many things our children look up to us as an example and eating together is a great way of connecting with them, share the day, share a delicious bite, I am with you!:)

    • canelakitchen

      Is true Alida, wel my twins have 18 now but still I try we eat together all nights because is the only time we are together (to school normally they lunch at schol) this year they finish school and I hope they still eating healthy out of home!

  2. profiterolesandponytails

    So sad, isn’t it? I don’t feel that having homecooked meals together every night is that special, but now I realize that it isn’t that common. It is my favourite part of the day! Feels good to know that we’re settng our kids off on the right path to healthy eating.

  3. Mich - Piece of Cake

    This is so true… and its important everyone makes an effort to keep to this schedule. And no iPhones are smartphones at the table while eating!

  4. Recetario Spanglish para mis hijos

    This is true for North America, in South and Central America, we still have the habit to have dinner at least in family. Though, I have to say with teenagers is really difficult to get them all together, because of different schedules. I serve lunch three times a day…. Un beso,

    • My Little Italian Kitchen

      Well done! You are doing it the proper way. Your family is very lucky! I know Argentina is very family oriented πŸ™‚

  5. Our Growing Paynes

    I think it is such a disservice for our children if we don’t have regular sit down meals. It is such a shame people have their priorities mixed up. I love having dinner with my family. We get their full attention and they get ours.

    • My Little Italian Kitchen

      Yes children grow up so much better when they get to sit down and talk to their parents every day at the dinner table!

      • Our Growing Paynes

        They need to know we are listening to them and care!

  6. Suzanne

    I love your post. It is so important to create a time and place for the family to meet, enjoy conversation, and food. I enjoy cooking at home as I love eating good food and also that I know what is going into my body. Wonderful!!!

  7. thesinglegourmetandtraveller

    I agree and it’s such a shame. My kids are grown now but we always sat down at the table to eat, no TV, just talk and as they got older they always made sure they were home on Sunday evenings for us to eat as a family – and they still often come back which is lovely. A good time for talking as well as sharing a meal cooked with love.

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