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Benefits of Eating Together – Build Strong Habits for your Baby

 

Did you know? Studies show that the more often families share mealtimes, the more likely children are to have healthy diets and stay at healthy weights as toddlers.

Tuesday, January 5th, 2021

Sharing mealtimes together is not only a great way to teach your baby about healthy eating, but also about the importance of family time. In addition to the healthy foods you provide for your baby, he will see and learn about good nutrition by observing your food choices.

 

Long-term benefits

Research has shown that the more often families eat together, the lower the risk of children becoming overweight. Frequently shared family meals have been shown to lower the risk of your baby having a poor diet as he grows up. Eating with your baby is a chance for you to be a role model for your little one. If you choose to eat a variety of healthy foods, it sets an example for your baby to follow. Encouraging these healthy habits not only benefits your child now, but also sets the stage for his future healthy development.

 

 

Sources

 

Anderson SE, Whitaker RC. Household routines and obesity in US preschool-aged children. Pediatrics 2010;125(3):420-8.

 

Black MM, Aboud FE. Responsive feeding is embedded in a theoretical framework of responsive parenting. J Nutr 2011; 141(3): 490-4.

 

Crombie IK, Kiezebrink K, Irvine L et al. What maternal factors influence the diet of 2-year-old children living in deprived areas? A cross-sectional survey. Public Health Nutr 2009;12(8):1254-60.

Dattilo AM Programming long-term health: Effect of parent feeding approaches on long-term diet and eating patterns. In: Early nutrition and long-term health, mechanisms, consequences and opportunities. Ed., Saavedra and Dattilo, Elsevier, 2017: 471-95.

 

Hammons AJ, Fiese BH. Is frequency of shared family meals related to the nutritional health of children and adolescents? Pediatrics 2011;127(6):e1565-74.

 

Perez-Escamilla R, Segura-Perez S, Lott M, on behalf of the RWJF HER Expert Panel on Best Practices for Promoting Healthy Nutrition, Feeding Patterns, and Weight Status for Infants and Toddlers from Birth to 24 Months. Feeding Guidelines for Infants and Young Toddlers: A Responsive Parenting Approach. Durham, NC: Healthy Eating Research, 2017. Available at http://healthyeatingresearch.org

 

Thompson AL, Adair LS, Bentley ME. Pressuring and restrictive feeding styles influence infant feeding and size among a low-income African-American sample. Obesity (Silver Spring) 2013; 21(3):562-71.

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