5 scientifically proven reasons why you should eat together with your children
Is eating at a common table a matter of course and a natural part of your daily routine, or, alternatively, is it something reserved for special occasions? If you are used to eating at a different time or in a different room from your kids on most days, you might want to think about adjusting your habits.
A few recent studies have proven that eating alongside children ought become your routine, for a number of reasons.
#1 They will do better at school
You may be surprised to hear this, but a certain study has proven that children that eat with their parents have better grades than those that eat alone. The researchers also looked at why this is the case, and came up with an interesting explanation that makes sense.
According to them, the meals that you eat together as a family are usually prepared at home, so they have a higher nutritional value than delivery food, or ready prepared food hastily taken from the refrigerator that a child eats in their room. Besides the nutritional aspect, it was also hypothesised that talking about their problems or performance in a pleasant atmosphere while eating at a common table also has a positive effect on children’s grades at school.
#2 You will bond
There is another useful study that has shown that eating in pleasant family settings with a “cozy” atmosphere helps adolescent children to talk about their feelings much more openly.
That’s why it is a good idea to encourage children to develop this habit from an early age. Even during puberty, eating together should be considered a natural part of your family life, and eating can become a time of communication, during which your child knows they can trust you with anything that has been bothering them.
#3 Their communication skills get better
The EveryDaySpeech blog has posited another interesting benefit of eating together: according to them it improves your child’s vocabulary (especially for younger children).
As part of the time spent at the table, you can talk as a family about anything that you think will help your child practice their expressive and communication skills, and at the same time practice their vocabulary. You can also build on this by playing various board games or reading fairy tales together, which you will also find in our Readmio application.
#4 It has a positive effect on your child’s mental health
A group of Canadian scientists have recently come to this conclusion. In their study they discovered that eating together at a family dinner table can act as a form of prevention against later use of addictive substances and alcohol, as well as reducing the risk of depression in children.
Even more interesting was their finding that this family habit can in fact help to prevent eating disorders later in life.
#5 This way you can lead your child to independence
The concept of ‘eating together’ does not begin and end at the point of eating breakfast, lunch or dinner, but also encompasses the buying of ingredients, the preparation of food, cooking, table setting or final cleaning. Of course, doing all this is time consuming - a fact which discourages many parents from this habit, but try to look at the task from the opposite end.
Getting your child involved in all of these activities is a great way to start teaching them how to manage their home budget or help with chores. It has only advantages: your child will learn a lot of new things, you will have a helper and in addition you will spend even more quality time together.
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