Families who have a habit of eating while watching television, tend to eat less healthy foods, rather than families who ate unaccompanied television.
According to a US study published recently in the journal Appetite, family meals can be protective for children’s health.
Trofholz explained study leader Amanda, parents should provide at least 1 times a day, like at dinner, to eat with the children, because this could be an opportunity to teach kids about healthy food choices.
“Watching television during family meals can reduce the emotional connection between family members and blunts the protective effects of the food,” said Trofholz, who is also a researcher at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis.
To explore the relationship between watching television while eating with the family and the risk of obesity, researchers analyzed video recordings of 120 families with children aged 6 to 12 years.
Each family is asked to record two types of family meals using the iPad and then reported to the research team what they eat and how much they enjoyed the food.
Setiap proses makan bersama keluarga pun direkam, untuk melihat apakah saat makan, keluarga tersebut menonton televisi.
Researchers found that families who eat without watching television more enjoy their food, rather than family watching television.
The researchers explained, when there is no interference from television, the family can be enjoying the food, so easily satisfied with the food.
Chatter among family members also make eating more enjoyable session, this makes the family more healthy mentally and avoid emotional eating tendencies overeating due to stress conditions or because of distracted. Thus, families who do not watch television while eating significantly more healthy.
“Watching television while eating is a disorder that can cause someone to ‘eat without thinking’ including a overeat without realizing it,” said Eileen Fitzpatrick, an assistant professor at The Sage Colleges in Troy, New York, who was not involved in the study.
The dining environment without television is an opportunity for children to enjoy eating, trying new foods, and set yourself up to enjoy healthy meals provided.
Not surprisingly, the researchers say, children of families who watch television while eating are more likely to be overweight or obese than children whose families do not watch TV while eating.
Fitzpatrick adds, unhealthy food advertising on television can also shape a child’s eating, children tend to choose less healthy foods because of the influence of advertising.
“Families should try to see the moment of eating with the family as a necessity for healthy,” said Trofholz.
“Families that make family meals as a time to forge an emotional connection is more likely to turn off the television, serves food with higher quality, and more to enjoy the food.”