Start a Conversation: Why is eating well important?
Eating well helps to ensure our bodies get the energy and nutrients needed to grow, learn and be active. It can also help us sleep better, feel better and stay healthy as we grow.
Discuss mindful eating.
Mindful eating means taking your time when eating so that you can really pay attention to what, why and how much you are eating. This includes eating when you truly feel hungry, stopping when you feel full, and enjoying each bite (recognizing the smell, taste, texture and look of the food).
Discuss individual hunger cues.
Ask the following questions (there really isn’t a right or wrong answer):
- What does it feel like when you’re hungry?
- What does it feel like when you’re full?
- What does it feel like when you’re thirsty?
Start a Conversation: What are some things you can do that can make it easier for you to eat mindfully?
- Limit distractions when eating (e.g., screens, books).
- Sit down to eat instead of eating on-the-go (preferably sitting at a table with family or friends).
- Before you eat, take the time to recognize how your body is feeling. Are you hungry?
- Take your time to eat. It can take our bodies some time to tell our brains that we’re full.
Start a Conversation: Name some factors that can influence food and beverage choices. Can they be changed, or are they out of our control?
Some answers may include…
- The food that is available at home.
- The kitchen equipment that is available at home for preparing, storing and handling food.
- Knowing how to prepare and store food safely.
- The food available when eating out.
- Whether or not someone has an allergy and/or a medical condition.
- Seeing marketing and advertising.
- Whether or not it tastes good.
- How much food costs.
- The food that is available in the community.
- Being influenced by peer pressure.
Activity Idea: Have students create ways to educate peers about the importance of eating well and being active (e.g., posters, social media posts, PA announcements, presentation).
Revisit Canada’s food guide and its Healthy Eating Recommendations for evidence-based information.