Sunshine pediatrics

5 Reasons to Eat Healthy as a Family

Dec 12, 2023
5 Reasons to Eat Healthy as a Family
While getting your family together to sit down and eat a nutritious meal might feel like a hassle, it’s worth the extra effort. We discuss why here. Read on to learn more.

Do you struggle to get your family to eat healthier? Many families face challenges in eating a meal together, let alone a healthy one. Time constraints, budget concerns, limited food accessibility, and overall stress can make it challenging to get your family all sitting down at once to enjoy a healthy meal.

Even though it’s much easier to give up on what seems like an unattainable goal, we think you need to keep pursuing it. Almost 20% of children and adolescents living in the United States struggle with obesity, putting their health at risk.

So, pediatric expert Min Jung, MD, and the rest of our team at Sunny Hill Pediatrics in Frisco, Texas, want to give you more reasons to eat healthy together as a family.

Why eating healthy as a family matters

The eating habits your child will have as an adult start with the eating habits they establish when they’re young. So, it’s essential to encourage them to make healthy choices regarding food. Here are some reasons why eating a nutritious meal together with your child matters:

1. Provides better nutrition

When you make an effort to sit down to a family meal together, you’re more likely to include a variety of healthy foods, including lean proteins, whole grains, and fruits and vegetables. These foods are full of nutrients your child needs, especially compared to other choices, such as fast food.

2. Promotes healthier behavior 

If your child gets used to eating family meals with you, they’re not only nourishing their bodies, but they’re also nourishing their minds. Research tells us that kids who eat with their family regularly are less likely to engage in risky behaviors, such as drug and alcohol usage. 

3. Provides examples of what healthy eating looks like

Preparing and eating a meal with your child gives you the opportunity to teach them about essential nutrients, how to prepare healthy foods, and many other aspects of nutrition. That gives them the tools to reproduce healthy eating habits in adulthood.

4. Avoids potential allergens

Food allergies are common in children, so making them their meals gives you a chance to ensure they’re not eating anything that could be harmful. You can also show your child what substitutes are safe to eat.

5. Encourages mindful eating

Many people eat meals in front of screens. However, when you do this, you tend to eat mindlessly and not notice your body telling you when you’re full. Ignoring these cues leads to poor eating habits. 

So, encouraging your child to sit at the table with you without a screen helps them to be in tune with their body.

The goals of eating healthy as a family

Eating together as a family aims to ensure your child is healthy. It also reduces the risk of obesity. 

Childhood obesity can lead to high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes. In addition, your child might struggle with physical exercise, fitting into age-appropriate clothing, sleeping well, or breathing. 

If you’d like more information on how to make healthy eating choices, our team would love to help with a nutrition plan. Schedule an appointment online or over the phone at 469-530-9860 today.