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Eating for Health

Why Family Mealtimes Play a Vital Role in Preventing Childhood Obesity

Mon, 10 Dec 2012 03:00:00 EST

NEW SOUTH WALES, Australia December, 2012 – In today's society, family mealtimes are usually hurried, if eaten as a family at all. With stress and anxiety levels on the rise, and the number of families with both parents working at an all-time high, it's no wonder the importance of eating together as a family is being overlooked. But as new studies reveal, it could be a leading factor in childhood obesity.

Dr. Dianne Neumark-Sztainer says that eating together as a family brings about healthier kids. According to the doctor, they will be less likely to develop depression and eating disorders since unhealthy eating habits can be spotted and resolved earlier when children eat with their families. During this time, parents can also allow their kids to feel safe and secure so that they have the opportunity to open up about life in general. www.mealtimeswithoutmayhem.com/

Children learn by example – by letting the children see that parents are eating healthy, well-balanced meals, it will encourage them to do the same and prevent childhood obesity. When children are left to eat by themselves, they are likely to develop unhealthy eating practices – they tend to eat junk food, unhealthy portions of food and develop an irregular eating pattern, which often leads to childhood obesity.

Childhood obesity has been increasing in recent years in Australia.  Approximately 20-25% of Australian children are either overweight or obese*. Statistics also shows that in cases where there is childhood obesity, both parents are working; therefore, mealtimes are not usually spent together as a family.

Managing family mealtimes is difficult when a parent is out at work the whole day (even more so when faced with the arduous task of feeding fussy eaters). Less time is spent in preparing a meal, usually leading to children eating easy-to-prepare and not-so-nutritious meals.

Mum and author Jo Turner wrote – 'Mealtimes without Mayhem' – to help parents understand the importance of family mealtimes and provide them with effective techniques for managing family mealtimes and feeding fussy eaters. More importantly, it teaches readers how to create nourishing family meals with sustainable cooking and planning; thus, making them more equipped and ready to create a child-friendly eating environment. www.mealtimeswithoutmayhem.com/

Clare Mann, psychologist and author of 'Communicate: How to say what needs to be said, when it needs to be said, in the way it needs to be said' says, 'Undoubtedly, the long term benefits of eating together as a family are invaluable.  I believe children are more likely to feel safe and secure as an environment will have been created for open and honest communication.' 

'Mealtimes without Mayhem' provides insight into how to manage children from an early age so you can create an environment that allows for the development of social skills, good manners and enhanced communication skills within which sense of comfort and trust is established.'

Visit www.mealtimeswithoutmayhem.com/ to grab a copy of 'Mealtimes without Mayhem' today – a guide to managing family mealtimes and feeding fussy eaters.
 
*Source:
http://www.child-obesity.info/child-health/alarming-statistics-about-child-obesity-in-australia.html


Source: WebWire



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