Back to Health at the Kitchen Table

Is it possible that we can find our way back to health at our kitchen tables?

The reality is that it’s essential that we change the daily habits that are slowly impacting our wellbeing and causing chronic health conditions.

More and more we are becoming a society that eats alone or runs around all day long and our meals are being eaten in the car, on the sofa or just skipped altogether.  This poses a threat to our health and society.

Growing up my father made us all eat together.  If you were home then meals were eaten together sitting at the table. I never understood the value of this when I was younger.   It used to annoy me in my teen years that I would have to stop whatever I was doing even if it was homework and take a break and sit together as a family at our kitchen table and eat dinner together.

To my dismay, now as an adult, a health coach and mom of 4, This may be the one thing I have come to completely agree with my father on.  Although I don’t think he imposed the rule with health reasons in mind, he was on to something.

Science tells us that sitting at our kitchen table together is the healthy way!

Studies done by Cornell University that are published here show us just that:  http://news.cornell.edu/stories/2013/10/all-family-dinner-tables-linked-less-obesity

What aspects of our health and well-being can be improved by getting back to actually sitting down for meals at our kitchen tables with family and friends?

Healthy Bonding

The busier we get in our daily lives the less time we are spending with loved ones. When we sit down at the kitchen table with no electronic devices, we get to unwind and share our days with our spouses, loved ones, family, and friends. The more we share the more we bond and reconnect with each other.

Healthier food choices

It has been shown that families that sit down together tend to make better food choices and consume less calories then if they eat by themselves on the sofa in front of a television.
Additionally, if you are trying to lose weight or trying out a new way of eating, it is much easier when you get your family on board and do it together rather than doing it solo.  If you are stuck on where to start, here is an in-depth article on the importance of what food choices to make http://yourhealthyhustle.com/nutrition-why-should-i-care/

Healthier kids

Studies have shown that kids of families that mostly sit down to eat together do better in school both socially and academically.  This is due to the quality time spent with their parents and siblings. While sharing a meal, kids get to talk about their day and bond with you and feel that they and what they did matters to you as well they get to learn about you and your day.  In our family, we also pray with our kids before eating.  We say gratitude for our food, our day and pray for the less fortunate.

Healthier Relationships

The internet and social media have made it easier to connect with each other but in turn, has also made it easier for us to hide behind our screens and slowly start becoming an anti-social society.  Sitting down with friends and family at your kitchen table and sharing stories, thoughts, smiles, and laughter along with healthy food is one of the best things you can do for our relationships.  In turn, when we build healthy relationships our health is impacted in positive ways.

Better Health

Studies show over and over again that there are positive attributes to our overall health if we take the time to stop and actually cook and enjoy a meal with others.  It is important to start paying attention to the little things that we do daily that are impacting our health in big ways.

Running around all day and eating in our cars is becoming detrimental to our health not just in this country but all over the world.  If we are not eating in our cars solo, then we are at our desks doing work.  Never getting a break from the stress and rat race is killing us slowly.

To change this we have to become mindful of the consequences and make decisions to stop, sit down with a friend, loved one or co-worker and actually enjoy a meal and share our thoughts.  Doing this more will help us destress and start creating positive changes to better health and our waistlines.

Decrease Depression and Lowliness

Another improvement to mindfully thinking of and cooking a healthy meal and enjoying it with our families and friends is healthier minds and less depression.  Eating healthier food or nutritious whole food at home together is something that is done with and through love, allowing the meal to be more enjoyed and shared.

This, in turn, helps both decrease and prevent depression and lowliness because nutritious quality food provides the phytonutrients, vitamins, and minerals to maintain a healthy mind and brain.  Socialization of sitting down together is equally crucial to our happiness, mood and healthy state of mind.

Let’s get back to gathering around our kitchen table as it can be the key to regaining our long-term health and longevity!

 

 

 

About the author

Sandra Varela

Sandra Varela is a Certified Holistic Health Coach graduate of the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, focusing on organic family nutrition, prenatal and post partum nutrition, detoxification, weight loss, gut health and organic skincare. As a Cystic Fibrosis caregiver, she has 18+ years of chronic illness and caregiving experience. Sandra is also a licensed cosmetologist with 14+ experience in everything hair as well as natural and organic skincare.

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