Family Meals

Friday, December 18, 2009

Job stress and irregular working hours are leading to more fast food, less dinner table time and more skipped meals. Dr. Edward Hill discusses a study that looked at family meals in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Parents who work long and odd hours are more apt to choose fast food and prepared entrees for family meals.

The study by Cornell researchers of 25 working mothers and 25 working fathers found that:

h Only 56 percent of fathers and 40 percent of mothers had more than five home-cooked family meals a week.

h Fathers who worked long hours or had non-standard work schedules were more likely to opt for take-out meals, more apt to miss family meals and more apt to eat on the job.

h Mothers with long hours or non-standard work hours reported having more restaurant meals or already-prepared entrees, and also skipped breakfast.

h Watching TV was common during family meals, especially for moms.

h Fathers who lacked access to reasonably priced food at work were more likely to miss lunch, eat at work or in the car.

Researchers say the long hours and job stress may leave working parents feeling strained and fatigued with less personal energy for food and meals with their families.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.