Family Culture And Eating Habits

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Individuals’ eating habits are developed during the first years of their lives. Family, culture, and socioeconomic factors influence an individual’s feeding habits. Since birth children’s food preferences develop from genetically determined predispositions and are modified by experience (Scaglioni, Salvioni & Galimberti, 2008). Parents play an important role in a child’s eating habits since they have a great influence over what, when, and how much food is provided. Parents are a model of eating for their children and children’s eating patterns are influenced by parental approaches to feeding. Additionally, parents’ lifestyles, feeding styles, and practices impact what and how children eat and grow. Poor parental diets promote the development …show more content…
Uninvolved parents “make few demands on their child to eat but when demands are made this is unsupportive” (Shloim, Edelson, Martin & Hetherington, 2015). This type of style has been correlated with higher Body Mass Index (BMI) z-scores in previous studies. If parents provide children too much energy from food products in comparison to energy expenditure their children can develop obesity. Junk food, candies, processed foods and sugar-sweetened beverages are examples of high-calorie food items that are low in nutrients and contain large amounts of sugars. According to a study, consumption of sugary beverages and fast food among children increased their BMI and concluded that it is a contributing factor to being overweight (Sahoo et al., 2015). Availability of and repeated exposure to these types of foods provide the body with little nutrients and lead to weight gain and risk of developing chronic medical conditions like obesity. For that reason, parents should pay close attention to the types of foods they are providing to their children because they can promote unhealthy patterns of …show more content…
According to a study, children’s involvement in food-related activities increases their nutrition awareness and it is associated with higher fruit and vegetable intake (Horst, Rytz & Ferrage, 2014). Furthermore, family meals can also increase family communication. It gives the family time to talk about their day improving children relationship with their parents. Spending time eating as a family provides plenty of positive health benefits and emotions in the children. It also creates a tradition and children get used to regularly eat meals.
According to the Pediatric Center of Round Rock, timing is the third most important component of good nutrition (“Importance of Scheduling”, n.d.). If parents let their children skip meals they will become adults who will likely end up overeating. Also, if parents let children eat plenty of snacks before meals, children may not be hungry for their scheduled meal. In order to create a healthy routine, parents need to have consistent times for family meals every