With all of the confusing headlines and shifting recommendations about eating, it’s no wonder many people feel uncertain about their diet. However, there is a large body of research that suggests one of the very best things you can do for your family is eat together! I found a relevant article on the Children’s Data Bank website which cites the current benefits of simply eating together on a regular basis. Family meals and parental presence at meals is associated with:
• A more nutritious diet with higher intakes of fruits, vegetables, and dairy products
• A decreased risk of developing disordered eating habits in adolescence (especially girls)
• Teens that are less likely to get into fights, think about suicide, smoke, drink, use drugs, delayed initiation of sexual activity, and better academic performance
If you’d like to read a more in depth article which cites the current research, click on this link. There is also a great article from the Multi-Service Eating Disorder Association (MEDA) about the benefits of family meal time. Feel free to share it with your family and friends.