Having Family Breakfasts could make Children Healthy
In a study conducted on about 8,000 children, it was revealed that children who had breakfast with their family were less likely to be obese.
The study was conducted in about eight European countries and the results were surprising. It was found that if the children have breakfast with their family, they are likely to eat a healthier breakfast as their parents would take care of the nutritious content in their breakfast, which makes them healthier and reduces the chances of them becoming obese.
Adding to it is the fact that family breakfasts improve family cohesions which would contribute to other health benefits of the children. The study revealed that children who had a family breakfast five to seven times a week are about 40 times less likely to be overweight while those who sat with their family for breakfast two to three times a week had more chances of becoming obese.
The same study included family dinners. The numbers for the family dinners were similar, i.e, the results revealed that those who had family dinners are less likely to become obese. When it comes to lunch, surprisingly, it revealed that eating with the family doesn’t affect the weight of the children in any way. However, it was said that it could be because children rush from school for lunch and parents might not have enough time to prepare nutritious meals for lunch.
Parents in the UK work longer than the parents in other European countries and so it is recommended to UK parents that they have frequent family breakfasts with their children. It was also suggested that the desired effect could be had if they choose nutritious homecooked meals for breakfast instead of tinned or packaged food.
“So, while doing it every day would be ideal, maybe just encouraging people to have breakfast or dinner as a family a couple of times a week would be helpful”, said Dr Gavin Sandercock, senior lecturer in clinical physiology at the University of Essex.