Sitting down for a family meal with the kids and your partner has become a challenge for many with their hectic daily schedules. For most, school, family, and work schedules with extracurricular activities leaves little room for quality family time where you sit at the table, enjoy a meal, and discuss your day.
However, did you know that there are various benefits of family meal times, that you probably did not even know about? Family meals are essential and should be part of your daily routine. Researchers found that sharing a meal together as a family on a frequent basis, no matter if it is supper, breakfast, or lunch, can reap numerous benefits.
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Benefits Of Family Meal Times
Family meals often have more nutritious value
A study at Harvard university reveals that families who sit around the table and enjoy a meal together are twice as likely to consume their five servings of vegetables and fruits as opposed to families who do not share a meal together.
Children who attend family meals tend to be less picky
Children that eat meals at the table with their families generally tend to eat a broader variety of foods and are less picky than those who do not.
The perfect opportunity for family members to bond
Sitting down for a meal with your household members creates the ideal opportunity to talk about your day and any highlights or disappointments you have experienced. This time can help with strengthening your family ties and give each other a sense of belonging, which subsequently boosts your child’s self-esteem.
Parents can pass down proper table etiquette
During meal times, parents can set the example and teach their kids the value of healthy eating habits and polite table etiquette.
Regular meal times assist with the fight against obesity
Research shows that families who tend to sit down for a family meal eat slower and have conversation. This could be paramount in the fight against obesity.
Keeping kids on the straight and narrow
Research reveals that kids who have curfews to enjoy family meal times are less likely to engage high risk activities like substance use and experience less psychological issues.
Useful Tips On How To Promote Family Meals Together
- Be sure to make at least one family meal per day a priority in your household. Emphasize the importance of spending time together as a family, and not simply eating a meal.
- Begin with small steps and gradually increase the family meals with one extra meal per week.
- Involve other family members when planning the weekly menu and setting up a grocery list.
- Divide cleaning tasks among family members afterwards.
- Switch off electrical devices and the TV during family meals.
We hope that you have enjoyed reading this article and that it gave you some insight on the importance of family meals. It is worth giving it a chance, because you have nothing to lose, with a lot to gain. More family meal times, could be the beginning of reaping substantial rewards for the family.