Health Dept. Challenges Families to Eat Together

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These days, having a nice family dinner every night is almost impossible to do .

More and more families are saying they don't have time to sit down together because of their busy schedules.

The Barren River District Health Department is trying to change that by challenging families to eat together.

The health department says there are many benefits to eating as a family.

"It's a good time to reflect on the day that you've had away from each other," said Rose Cobb, mother of two.

Cobb and her two boys try to eat together every night.

"It's not realistic to do it everyday. There's sports, and we can't always have it together but we try as much as possible," Cobb admits.

Dinner time is a family event at the Cobb's house, and everyone pitches in.

"To get them ready for when they're out on their own and to help me out as well. There's no sense in one person doing it all," Cobb said.

She said ever since her kids were born she's stressed the importance of family dinners.

"There's so many things you can learn by having dinner together, like manners and socialization skills," Cobb explain.

"Other benefits are that they tend to do better in school when they eat with their families. Kids also have less trouble with getting into things like smoking, drugs and alcohol," said Diane Sprawl, with the Barren River District Health Department

Sprawl said eating together at home helps kids eat healthier, but parents also benefit.

"It's time to communicate better. It keeps the family more tied together and connected," Sprawl added.

Cobb said that's especially important since her husband passed away a few years ago.

"Being a single parent limits the time," Cobb said.

She knows many people who have lost touch with eating together every night, but she hopes when her kids have a family they carry on this tradition.

The "We Can Find Time" challenge ends August 18.

All you have to do to participate is describe to the Barren River District Health Department how you find the time to eat together as a family.

Tips on how to make the time to eat together:

  • Make eating together a priority.
  • Be creative when trying to set up time together.
  • If ballgames get in the way, take a picnic along and eat it at the park.
  • Turn off any distractions during dinner like the TV or radio.
  • Keep the conversation pleasant.

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