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Finish Your Plate- Something to Ponder

Something to think about…

As adults at mealtimes, we have control of putting food on our plates. Depending on the day, the food, our mood, the time of day, and our appetite, WE adjust what and how much food we put on our plates. Some days, we maybe feel like more salad than pasta; other days, salad might make you cringe, so we adjust our plates to accommodate. Then as we sit down and eat, sometimes we finish our plates, and sometimes, we are just simply way too full to take one more bite.

Now when we think of our children, WE are also typically in charge of what and how much food gets put on their plate. And how many times have we said, “you need to finish your breakfast/lunch/dinner”?

Think of yourself as your child and imagine someone always putting food on your plate, telling you exactly what and how much you will eat? What if every time you ate someone told you that YOU will finish your plate?

Feel a little overwhelming?

We all do this, so don’t feel bad! But next time for a meal, try having your children help with plating their own food. You can decide what is going to be served, and they can decide how much. If you don’t have time to do this, and just need to get food on their plates, when mealtime is winding down, let them decide when their last bite is going to be.

Worried that they will just ask for a snack 15 minutes later? Try saving their meal just a little while, and if they request to eat more soon after a meal has finished, offer up their plate again.

Giving a little control at mealtimes can make a big difference in creating a positive mealtime experience.

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