Telling kids to finish their dinner could turn them in to binge eaters

4 July 2018, 11:24 | Updated: 4 July 2018, 12:04

Kids eating food

By Sam Lucas

A dietician has warned that getting your child to eat all of their food isn’t always the best practice.

Telling your kids to finish their dinner could turn them in to binge eaters.

Dietician Lyndi Cohen says that it's one of many mistakes parents can make at the dinner table, and has offered some alternative approaches for mealtimes. 

She explained: "Being told to 'finish everything on your plate' often encourages overeating and eventually, emotional eating when they get older." 

"You want them to stop eating when they feel full - regardless (of) whether the food is finished or not."

child eating pizza


Her ways around the classic method is instead, telling your kids to rate their hunger out of 10.

In addition, allowing them to serve their own food, or dishing an appropriate amount for them based on their hunger level. 

Other advice the dietician gave is to never use ‘F words’ such as ‘fat’ and ‘fattening’ around your kids. 

She explained: "The way you talk about food and bodies really matters,"   

kids eating


That even includes referring to foods as "good" or "bad”.

"Labelling food as 'bad' demonises it,"

"If children think a food is 'bad', they may end up hiding food from you, eating more when no one is looking and feel guilty and bad when they do it eat (and this can all lead to emotional eating and yo-yo dieting later on in life)." 

Who knew?!


Watch more: