The family that eats together stays together. For years, the idea of a family sitting down to eat together after a day of work or school was as American as apple pie.
But lately, as people's schedules have gotten fuller, the idea of a sit-down dinner, during which parents and kids all eat the same meal and talk to each other has fallen away.
Even if you and members of your family need to be 50 places at once during a typical week, making the time to enjoy at least one dinner together is important. Meal delivery kits can make family dinner a tradition in your home.
Why Family Dinners Matter
A lot of ink has been spilled on the importance of family dinners and their slow decline. Let's look at why it's so important to eat dinner together with the people you love.
One significant benefit of eating together is that it helps everyone in your family develop and maintain healthy eating habits, as Today reports. When people, especially kids and teenagers, are left to fend for themselves, they aren't going to make the healthiest choices. Even adults, who should know better, are likely to choose salty, fatty, high-calorie take-out food over a nutritious meal when given a chance.
Family dinner also has a positive social impact. Teens who eat a meal with their parents are less likely to participate in “risky” behaviors, such as underage drinking or smoking. Setting aside a half hour or so daily or most days per week to bond with your kids and spouse also helps everyone in your family feel closer together.
The Decline of the Family Dinner
Since 2012, the number of meals that are eaten alone has climbed, from 38 percent to 42 percent. You can blame several things for the decline of the family dinner.
One thing to blame is the fact that people are spending more and more time away from home. Both parents might work, the kids might have sports, ballet, chess club, or any number of other activities after school.
Plus, people's interests have shifted away from sharing meals or “food rituals” towards leisure activities. You're going to spend time doing the things you value. If you value watching TV or another activity more than you appreciate eating dinner with your family, you're going to choose the one over the other.
One last thing that's leading to the decline of the family dinner: the fall of the home-cooked meal. These days, women spend 66 minutes a day cooking, according to the Washington Post. In the 1960s, they spent around 112 minutes a day cooking.
How Meal Delivery Kits Can Help
Meal delivery kits, like Plated, offer a solution to the decline of the family dinner. Today's families are super pressed for time. There's no room in the schedule for extensive meal planning, food shopping, and food prep.
But a meal kit takes care of those three things. When you subscribe to a meal kit, you get a recipe and measured out ingredients delivered to your home. Kits are available for families of two, three or four.
Ordering meal kits can also give you and your family a chance to bond. You need to prepare the recipes that are included in the kit at home. That gives you an opportunity to connect with your spouse and kids as you work together in the kitchen to prepare your evening meal.
Food tastes better when it's made with love. With a meal kit, you and your family can lovingly prep dinner, then sit down together and enjoy some quality time.