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Family Focus: Resolving to be healthier as a family

Many people resolve to lose weight or be healthier in the new year. A local doctor recommends attacking the challenge together as a family.

SYLVANIA, Ohio — You may resolve to lose weight, or save money, but have you thought about a resolution that involves a healthier 2020 for the whole family?

When it comes to what's healthy for your family, ProMedica adult and pediatric medicine doctor, Dr. Sohil Patel said there are two big areas of focus: screen time and nutritious eating, as childhood obesity is becoming more and more common.  

Dr. Patel said you can tackle both challenges at mealtime. 

"Everyone's always busy. Increasingly you get a ping, a call and you're just flashing your phone. 'What happened?' Maybe just unplug during mealtime," Patel said. 

According to Patel, now is the time to talk with your kids and learn what's happening in their lives, which is good for both them and you. 

When it comes to mealtime, get your kids involved in the process. They might get excited about eating healthier, especially if you start at a young age. 

"'Hey, this was kinda fun. Oh, I have the power to actually do that? Mom and dad are actually offering to let me maybe season something, choose something,'" Patel said of the thought process.

Patel said many families struggle with the expense of eating healthy and the time it takes to prepare meals. He said something that can help in both of those areas is food prepping involving the children. 

"I find a lot of people doing things on the weekend. Just having that longer prep course, but then you divide it up and make multiple things," he said.

Patel said that saving time by food prepping means you have more family time and sleep time. 

He also said that your kids are paying attention to you and tend to emulate your behavior as they grow, which is why a resolution to involve the whole family in a healthier 2020 can really pay off in the long run.

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