Why mealtimes are good for families.

 how to improve communication skills and effective communication with childrenYvonne Wake (BSc. MSc), a Public Health Nutritionist at Roehampton University, London,   has written a paper on nutrition and the role a family plays, she agrees that it’s important to eat meals together as a family.

“Talking to children over dinner is a great way of gaining trust and they are more likely to talk about things that could sometimes feel uncomfortable. Regular meal times altogether give children the opportunity to discuss problems with family members; it relaxes and encourages them to wind down. From an emotional standpoint, research shows that children who frequently eat with their families have better results at school, are less depressed, less likely to drink alcohol, smoke, or use marijuana than children who eat with their families less than twice a week,” says Wake.

Some key reasons why family mealtimes are important

• Strengthen the family by providing opportunities for communications and building relationships.

• Enable children to have longer conversations with parents, which can increase their linguistic abilities giving them an edge in the classroom.

• Are seen as a marker for other positive family attributes and play an important role in helping teens cope with the stresses of adolescence.

• Lead to better nutrition as you have more control over quality and quantity of the family’s food choices.

• Enable children to adopt their parent’s attitudes to food and acceptable table manners.

• Foster family traditions and help shape and give meaning to cultural heritage.

• Children value the contact time. When Oprah Winfrey conducted a ‘Family Dinner Experiment’ in 1993, five families volunteered to eat dinner together every night for a month, staying at the table for a half-hour each time. At first, sharing meals was a chore for many families and the time dragged on. But, by the end of the month, the families were happy and planned to continue dining together most evenings, if not every night. The greatest surprise for parents was how much their children treasured the dependable time with their parents at the table.

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Lisa Warner

Founder at Fink Cards
Lisa Warner, one part of the Family Communication Duo, is an energetic and passionate ball of energy, whose excitement and enthusiasm know no bounds. Her drive and belief in doing the impossible has been rewarded when her mission to get families talking led her to found the incredibly successful Fink Cards and won her the title of Female Entrepreneur of the Year. Her contagious positive outlook regularly see her appearing on the radio, in newspapers and magazines where she will happily talk about the importance of good family communication. The entrepreneur, activist and energizer proudest achievement to date is creating a strong and happy marriage and raising 4 confident and sociable teenagers.

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