Make family meals a priority with a few simple steps. Family meals provide numerous health benefits for families to last a lifetime.
Disclosure: Today’s post has been sponsored by the FMI Foundation. All thoughts and opinions are my own. #FAMILYMEALSMOVEMENT #FamilyMealsMonth
Growing up in an Italian family, I have had the privilege to create many special memories with my family and friends around the dinner table. For me, the consistency and tradition of dinner with my family each week has left a lasting impression for me on the importance of family meals.
Ask any of my childhood friends and they will say “yeah, the Caputo’s always ate dinner late!” There’s a good reason for that. My parents wanted to make sure we always ate together as a family at the end of each day [whenever possible].
THE IMPORTANCE OF FAMILY MEALS
Fast forward to today, and family meals are still a priority for me and the Four Tops. While our table and the menu changes [sometimes night tonight- whether we are at Mom’s house, Nana’s cottage, or Nana and Goomba’s home in Dearborn], I still make family meals a priority. And here is why:
- Family meals keep us connected. Family meals improve communication and relationships and help us celebrate simple joys together.
- Family meals have always been one of the best healthy habits. Studies show that family meals improve fruit and vegetable consumption- which is timely because September just so happens to be Family Meals Month AND Fruit and Veggie Month!
- Family meals help us stay strong. A recent study in the Journal of Nutrition and Education Behavior builds on years of previous research that more frequent family meals are associated with better dietary outcomes and family functioning outcomes.
ONE SIZE DOES NOT FIT ALL
With the recent change in our family structure, there is something I am trying to teach my children [and myself]: all families are different. All families are special. And all families are made good. And guess what? The same goes for family meals.
Whether you sit together at dinner, breakfast, Nana’s house, or a park bench, the time together spent with someone in your family over a shared meal is priceless. And its impact goes well beyond the physical nutrition side of things.
OUR FAVORITE FAMILY MEALS
- Sunday Dinner- with a batch of classic Sunday Gravy simmering on the stove
- Friday pizza night- here’s a look at the plethora of pizza archives on M2MN
- Microwaved nuggets WITH fresh fruits and veggies on the side. Yep, it’s a fan favorite here. And Mom agrees with nugget-night when the kids pick their favorite F/V to crunch on too!
Whether it is Sunday dinner, a Tuesday breakfast, or a Friday lunch, I encourage you to set aside time for at least one special meal each week with your family or a friend. One seems reasonable enough, right? And yes, that means TV off and cell phones away. You are making memories that will last a lifetime- and continue beyond.