This Article is About
obesity rates
childhood obesity
chicken nuggets
french fries
school lunches
overeating
The Key To Kids Who Eat Everything? Look To The French
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The Key to Kids Who Eat Everything? Look to the French

The typical American child eats foods that have no resemblance to natural items- fruit "chews" that have no fruit content at all, chicken nuggets with questionable amounts of actual chicken and french fries that are literally swimming in vegetable oil and coated in salt. Many will not touch a vegetable and even worse, the government is allowing them to slip through with pizza sauce and ketchup counting as "veggies" in school lunches. But, children in other parts of the world actually eat the foods that are served to them, without question and without fuss, making them not only better eaters in general but also making them more adventurous in their tastes as well. Experts suggest that fed up parents turn to the French for some suggestions to get their children to try new and healthier food items.

There is no suggestion that the French are perfect, of course and parts of the country are having issues with obesity as well.Nationwide, obesity rates in France have doubled since 1995, now accounting for 11.3% of the population. Still, the country has the lowest obesity rate in Europe. Some areas of the country have rates as high as 51% of the population as well. Most troubling, childhood obesity is growing at a much faster rate than that of the adults.

In traditional areas of France, children are not given the so called "kid" foods that American children grow up on. The parents make each child at least try a bite of every new food that is introduced, making them more adventurous from a very young age. The children are okay with this rule because they know if they really do not like the food, they are not going to be forced to eat anymore of it for that meal. The food might be introduced a time or two in future meals because most children need to taste a food at least a few times to know if they are going to like a food or not.

French meals are actually an experience, with slow pacing and real dishes, served at a table. Eating in front of a television has been linked to overeating in countless studies, so making a meal a slow, real event forces the mind to pay attention to what is going on as well as what the child is eating. That can allow them to be satisfied with less food overall, saving them the calories that could lead to weight gain.


Street Talk

Another article that makes complete sense. thanks Amie

Reply
  about 7 years ago

Really? Do you have a lot of experience in France? I think this is just an American idealizing the French lifestyle. Kids are picky world wide. I would say that kids in traditional areas of France aren't given the choice because their parents don't have the money to afford 'kids foods'. Traditional areas are generally poorer than non-traditional areas, AKA 'the big city". And sure, maybe they eat everything on their plate, but I'd bet that if they don't, they get a slap in the head for not doing so. Traditionalism comes with a negative side too.

Reply
  about 7 years ago

I have a lot of friends who are from various areas of France, mostly rural areas. They were never punished but had to eat at least a bite of every new food. It is a commonly accepted practice to introduce a new food to the child and hope for the best. If they don't like it, you wait a bit and then you try again at a different time. Sometimes they discover that they like stuff, sometimes they decide that they do not. And there was no mention of them eating everything on their plate, that teaches negative eating habits as well.

Reply
  about 7 years ago

YES. YOU KNOW, WHEN PEOPLE OBSESS ABOUT THEIR EATING i TELL THEM TO "EAT SLOW" NO ONE BELIEVES ME.

Reply
  about 7 years ago
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