Target audience –
• Help young people recognize their hunger andrespond to feelings of fullness.
Tip #1: Don’t require children and adolescents to eat all of the food on their plates.
I decided with my children . . . if they didn’twant to eat, that was fine. They weren’t gettinganything else. I’m not cooking two meals by anymeans. . . . You don’t want to make food thebiggest priority. . . . [F]ood doesn’t have to be a power struggle. If the kid is hungry, sooner orlater [he’ll] eat. . . .
- Female, late 30s
When I became a parent, when my childrenwere little, I didn’t ever force-feed them. Theydidn’t eat until they were hungry. . . . Well, I don’t have children that are overweight. I havechildren that know when to stop. . . . [T]heyknow the sensation of being full, and it’s really,really nice to see that.
- Female, 40-ish
Tip #2: When possible, allow children andadolescents to portion their own food.
When I would go to my grandma’s house as achild, the rule was you finished what she puton your plate. And . . . I’ve noticed since, I feel guilty when I don’t eat everything that’s on my plate. Even now . . . I feel like I need to finisheverything that’s on my plate, whether I’mhungry for it or not.
- Female, early 20s
Tip #3: Model healthy behaviors.
I’m hoping that I’m being a role model to mykids. ’Cause I don’t make them clean their plates off if they’re not hungry anymore. I grewup in the household that said, “There’s kidsstarving overseas; you need to eat everything.” And my husband might disagree with me on thatsometimes, but if the kids aren’t hungry, I justsay, “Okay, you can save it.”
- Female, mid-30s
Target audience –
• If you were raised in the clean-plate club,retrain yourself.
Tip #1: Don’t finish food if you are not hungry.
[O]ne thing I’m trying to do more in the last fewyears is get away from the old habit of alwayscleaning my plate. . . . [W]hen you’re full, youshould quit eating. The rest you just have toburn off.
- Male, 60-ish
Tip #2: Remember that being overstuffed is nota good feeling.
I enjoy eating. . . . I like good food. . . . Butnow it doesn’t have to be where I’m miserablewhen I get done eating because I’ve had to cleanup my plate. . . . I finally got this mindset that I feel better if I don’t overeat.
- Female in her 60s