Why family dinner is so important

Why family dinner is so important

If we think back to the “good old days,” our mind usually goes to a happy family who enjoys each other’s company regularly. We can picture them sitting together at the table for breakfast and dinner. They start and end their day together.

But it’s actually more than a nice idea. There’s a huge family benefit to having meals together.

While a majority of families now eat dinner in front of a screen (television, tablet, phone, etc.). We can all agree that we’ve seen a decline in family values, personal relationships, and communication skills since the family dinner became a nice afterthought and not a piece of intentional planning. 

When we are clearly setting the intentions for family dinner, we can have some amazing outcomes. But what are the outcomes of having family dinner? 

There are some key fundamental changes in families that eat together and those that eat and run.

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Meet Ashley and family behind Pricelessly Imperfect. We’re a Southern Christian family that believes in God, the value of homeschool, and traditional values. We’re excited you’re here and hope you stay awhile.

Less likely to have drug addiction in the future

I know this sounds insane but trust me, the science is there. A study from CASColumbia found that teens that skipped family dinner time were 4x more likely to try marijuana. They also found a decreased risk of alcohol use and tobacco usage. 

Call me crazy but I firmly support my kids not getting hooked on drugs or alcohol. If sitting down and making family dinner a priority can help prevent that, I’m all for it.

God calls women to be a homemaker

Download the 5 Essential Planning Sheets Every Mama Needs

You’ll find weekly menu planning sheets, my essential pantry list for any kitchen, kid chore charts and more! Go from chaos to hyper organized with just a few minutes a day.

Download now for family dinner planning

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Better relationships 

In the same study, CASColumbia found that teens had almost a 2x better relationship with their parents when they focused on family dinner. It creates a space for open, honest conversation. A place where the family can bond without fear of judgment. 

Enhanced language skills

wives are called to be a homemaker

This is another biggie for me. As someone with a degree in English, having strong language skills are imperative in our household. It’s something my husband and I value a great deal. When you sit down for family dinner, your kids are exposed to language.

Our kids have no problem holding a conversation with an adult at just six and eight. We spend a great deal of time discussing things with our kids and not using a dumbed-down version of the language. Kids are smart and will ask questions if they don’t understand a concept. That’s why my youngest can have a very serious conversation on different economic plans and different political ideologies.

I don’t mention this to brag but to say that family dinners are important.

Increase the fine motor skills

My husband was a single dad before we met and family dinner was a little less intentional through no fault of his own. Since we got serious and subsequently married we’ve made dinner a huge priority in our home. What does that have to do with fine motor skills?

By handing my children a fork, butter knife, and spoon each night they’ve learned to use both hands to handle two utensils at once.

Dinner is a great place to practice those fine motor skills.

We all want our kids to have solid grades so they can reach their fullest potential when they reach adulthood. In our current society, that means some seriously good grades.

Ann K. Dolin, M.Ed, found that when students spend more time bonding with their family over dinners, they are 40% more likely to have grades that are A’s and B’s. BAZINGA.

She also found that “A University of Illinois study of 120 boys and girls ages 7 to 11 found that children who did well on standard achievement tests were those that had consistent quality meal time with their families.” 

Reader’s Digest survey of 2000 parents found that family dinners were a stronger indicator of student success than anything else. Wild times. 

Better grades

the homeschool benefits no one is talking about

Healthier kids in the long-term 

We’re getting super sciencey today but Standford University Medical Center found that kids who eat dinner with their family have a healthier relationship with food.

In a world obsessed with body image and children suffering from bad food relationships, creating an environment where children can create a healthy relationship with their food is paramount.

Kids also consumed more fruits and veggies and less fried foods creating a healthier child overall.

All great change in America begins at the dinner table.”- Ronald Reagan

I love Ronald Reagan for a variety of reasons but one of those reasons is his belief in the importance of family dinner.

In a world so disconnected from one another and so heavily focused on the latest likes on Instagram, I believe that dinner holds a greater significance than we can ever realize.

Make family dinners a top priority in your family and I promise you will see a difference in the way y’all interact with one another. There will be a deeper appreciation for one another.

If you’re not making dinner a top priority now, grab my free planners. They include a family meal planner and daily planner so you can map out dinners and when you’ll have them.

When you make a plan and write it down, it’s easier to commit to that plan. You got this mama.

Download the Meal Planner & Daily Planner Every Mama Needs

You’ll find weekly menu planning sheets, my essential pantry list for any kitchen, kid chore charts and more! Go from chaos to hyper organized with just a few minutes a day.

Download now and make family dinners a priority again

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