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Eating Dinner as a Family Reduces Stress

Everyone knows your family can be a pain in the neck sometimes, but regular family dinners can be the key to reduced stress levels in the household. This was found in a survey by the American Heart Association (AHA), who research chronic stress which can increase rates for all manner of heart diseases.

Of the 1,000 U.S. adults surveyed in September 2022, 91% of respondents said their family was less stressed when they share meals together. 84% say they wish they could share a meal more often with loved ones.

Dr. Erin Michos said, “Sharing meals with others is a great way to reduces stress, boost self-esteem, and improve social connection, particularly for kids. Chronic, constant stress can also increase your lifetime risk of heart disease and stroke. So, it is important for people to find ways to reduce and manage stress as much as possible, as soon as possible.”

Connecting with friends, family, coworkers and neighbors benefits people beyond stress relief. In fact, the survey found a majority of people say sharing a meal reminds them of the importance of connecting with other people, and say it reminds them to slow down and take a break.

Those surveyed say they are more likely (59%) to make healthier food choices when eating with other people but have difficulty aligning schedules with their friends or family to do so. Overall, respondents reported eating alone about half of the time.

Dr. Michos said, “It’s not always as easy as it sounds to get people together at mealtime. Like other healthy habits, give yourself permission to start small and build from there.”

Possible Preaching Angle:

Eating together as a family takes sacrifice and planning. Start from an early age with your children (but it’s never too late). Turn off the TV and cell phones. Plan for some conversation and allow even the youngest to contribute.


Editor, “Study Finds that Eating Dinner as a Family Makes 91% of Families Less Stressed,” Good News Network (10-27-22)

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