Dining as a family can be tricky with busy schedules, but if you can sneak in a few meals together throughout the week, the benefits are priceless.
1. Increased Confidence for Kids
For some families, spending as little as 20 minutes together can build kids’ self-esteem, increase emotional intelligence, and give children a broader life perspective.
2. Reduced Risk of Teen Troubles
Regular family meals have been linked to a lower risk of obesity, substance abuse, teen pregnancy, depression, eating disorders, and an increased chance of graduating from high school.
3. Character Development
Parents and grandparents have the opportunity to chat about important topics, such as education, hobbies, and interests. This is the time to mold your child’s character by talking about honesty, truthfulness, charity, or other topics you value.
4. Good Nutrition Habits
Studies show that when children have family meals growing up, they are more likely to eat regular—and more nutritious—meals as adults. For tips on how to eat well as a family, contact your local Hy-Vee Dietitian to set up a store tour.
5. Better Table Manners
Eating as a family gives you a chance to practice table manners with youngsters. Children can also learn mealtime etiquette by helping in the kitchen, setting the table, filling water glasses, clearing dishes, and offering seconds.
About the author.
Holly Ellison, RD, LD | Riverfront Hy-Vee Dietitian
507.625.1107 | HEllison@hy-vee.com