A family is a unit where all gears spin within the same assembly. In order for this assembly to work, there has to be communication between the parts. What better place to have "meetings" than at the dining table? Studies have shown that there are enormous benefits when the entire family gathers for meal time.
After reading this, you will thrive to make time to enjoy dinner time with your family every day. The following are some benefits of having your meals together.
Yes, this is the number one benefit of eating together! Conversations at the dining table represent a great opportunity for families to bond, plan, connect, and learn from one another. This time provides a sense of belonging. It helps parents learn more about their children and for children to express themselves. It is a unique opportunity to work on family unity.
Children are More Likely to Eat Healthily
Studies have demonstrated the children who eat with their families are more likely to eat their vegetables and fruits. Food prepared at home is usually healthier than whatever they can pick up outside. They contain a proper volume of salt and nutrients. Home cooked meals are usually not fried but broiled. Mealtime also provides an opportunity to talk about nutrition and healthy food choices.
It Allows Kids to Try New Foods
Introduce new foods and encourage your children to try them. Use this opportunity to expand their taste. Do not coerce the kids. Instead, place a new food next to a favorite. It might take 8-10 exposures to a new food before getting accustomed to it, so be patient.
Make the children participate in the process. Show them a recipe book and ask how they would like to try this new recipe. Introduce foreign cuisine and exotic flavors.
Better Fed Kids Equal Better Report Cards
As a consequence of eating healthier, children will perform better at school. Statistics show that teenagers who eat four or more times with their families have a better academic performance than those who only eat with their families two or fewer times per week.
Besides this, studies also demonstrate that kids who eat with their families are less likely to be sad, depressed, consider suicide, or have eating disorders.
Reduce Destructive Behaviors
Whenever a child is feeling depressed, meal times at the table can be a great intervention. Research indicates that spending eating time with the family is related to reducing chances of smoking, drinking, and doing illegal drugs in teens and pre-teens.
As children grow up, their schedules also become more complicated. Therefore, it is important to always make time to eat together.
Families who spend more time eating together are better stewards of their financial resources. Meals purchased outside can be four or more times more expensive than food prepared at home. Due to conflicting schedules, work, study time, and other factors, families tend to eat out several times in a week. But if you compare the expenses of eating at a restaurant compared to eating at home, you will feel more compelled to make an effort to make schedules meet.
Gather your family around the table and spend quality time. This will not only benefit your kids with healthy eating and manners but will also build character in them for the future. They will take this valuable input throughout their lives.