Written by: Meg Raines
A lot happens in September; we start winding summer down, school starts up again and the weather turns cooler as we prepare for moving our activities indoors. And, it also happens to be National Family Meal Month! National Family Meal Month is a nationwide event designed to support families in enjoying more meals together using items purchased at the grocery store, which not only encourages healthy meals but healthy family habits too. There are so many benefits to cooking and eating as a family:
- Regular family meals are linked to higher self-esteem in children and strengthen family relationships.
- More home-cooked meals are associated with greater intake of fruits and vegetables, keeping everyone in the family healthier!
However, cooking fatigue is real, and as the weather turns cooler we are faced with spending more time indoors as well as navigating uncertain times in the world, so putting together healthy meals can pose a challenge. But there’s help. Many groups and organizations are offering great resources for keeping family meals happening so families stay strong and healthy during a time when they need it the most.
Here is a look at what is available:
Join the Movement. The Family Meals Movement is the center of the campaign for National Family Meal Month, sponsored by the Food Industry Association. Their website offers tips for creating a little fun during meal time, news on the latest health-related research and a host of other resources and inspiration for keeping the kitchen lights on this fall.
Have a Plant is a campaign sponsored by the Produce for Better Health Foundation created to help people enjoy happier and healthier lives by eating more fruits and vegetables every day. This website is loaded with family-friendly recipes, advice from nutrition experts and even an index that will tell you everything you want to know about fruits and vegetables.
Combatting Pandemic Meal Fatigue is a PDF published by the Produce Marketing Association to offer families inspiration on overcoming meal fatigue. Thanks to member contributions, they offer many tips and tricks for making meals easy, fun and a little bit different to stave off the boredom.
Chelan Fresh Recipes – Let’s not forget our own wealth of resources for simple and healthy recipes! The folks here at Chelan Fresh are committed to bringing you the highest quality of fresh orchard fruit and our recipes are developed to be easy yet delicious and family friendly.
We hope that you will find new inspiration this fall and cook up some nutritious fare for the family, and don’t forget to join the Family Meal Movement this month!