Getting together to have a family meal may seem like a challenge with differing schedules and the all-important question, of what to have for dinner. These barriers may seem impossible to overcome on some nights when you are tired from a long day at work or being with the kids. But the benefits of having family meals together can be worth the effort. Research shows that eating more family meals together increases:
· Consumption of fruits and vegetables
· Communication during meals together
· Self-esteem and improves relationships
· Healthy behaviors in children, like better grades in school
If these are not enough reasons to work toward having regular family meals together keep reading. “Studies prove that family meals improve emotional well-being. They also prove that psychological health and heart health are related.”
Family Meal Time does not mean that the meal needs to be cooked from scratch.
The important ingredients are:
- Sit down and face each other
- Share the same food
- Have a pleasant time together
- Turn off the television and other electronics
It is important “HOW” families eat together not “WHAT” they eat together. That comes later (after you have established success in eating together). The more family meals you have together the greater the benefits. So just keep trying. Plan ahead, include the kids and enjoy your time together.
Additional resources can be found at: https://www.fmi.org/family-meals