Posted: Jul 31, 2012 1:00 PM
Family mealtime is important for a variety of reasons. A healthy breakfast gets your child's day off to a good start and family dinners can be a place for bonding and learning. Read on to learn more about the importance of sitting down to eat with your kids.

Healthy breakfast

Kids who start eating healthy breakfasts at a young age develop good eating habits that last a lifetime. Breakfast doesn't have to be elaborate, just healthy. Skip the sugary cereals and bakery treats -- instead serve whole grain cereal with low-fat milk, fruit and nuts. The combination of carbs, protein, calcium, vitamins and good fat leaves your kids feeling full, yet alert and energized. Children who eat a healthy breakfast are also less likely to eat junk throughout the day.


Sit-down dinner

Studies indicate that children who sit down and eat dinner with their families are more likely to do well in school, stay out of trouble, communicate more openly, and avoid alcohol and drugs. If that isn't enough, dinnertime also provides an opportunity to bond with your children. You can learn about what they are doing at school, about their friends, and delve into their dreams and aspirations.

Celebrity mom Monica Potter recently kicked off Kellogg's Share Your Breakfast campaign. Potter shares her tips for getting the day off right with a healthy, balanced breakfast.

Make it happen

Keep your kiddos focused on school (rather than growling bellies) by not letting them skip breakfast.

Talk with your mouth full

Share at least one meal together as a family. With everyone involved in different after-school activities, breakfast is the perfect time to catch up with the kids.

No need to be Super Mom

Rushed in the mornings? Set breakfast out the night before. Come sunrise, just add milk!

Teach healthy habits

Eating three meals a day is half the battle -- what your kids are eating is also important. Take the time to teach them what's healthy and what's not.

Pay it forward

Teach your kids to appreciate food and be thankful for the meals in front of them. Consider a food pantry visit to teach them the importance of giving back to those who are not as fortunate.

More about family time

From 9-5 to family time
Planting the seeds for a stronger family
Rules of engagement: Unplug and reconnect with your kids