Deconstructing the Family Meal: Are Characteristics of the Mealtime Environment Associated with the Healthfulness of Meals Served?

Authors: SFSI Faculty Affiliate Karen Peterson
Published February 2019 in the Journal of the American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

By Eric Freedman
Capital News Service

Households that eat family-style meals together at the table with the TV off may have healthier diets than families who don’t.

And that has implications for benefits such as lower risk of obesity, greater diet quality and healthier eating habits, according to researchers from the University of Michigan and their collaborators.

Identifying which components of family meals to promote may improve child nutrition, they said in a recent study.

“What is it about a family meal that works or doesn’t work? These are messages that can be incorporated into nutrition education and parent education,” said co-author Karen Peterson, a U-M professor of nutritional sciences and global public health.

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