Eat at home if you want your children to have healthful meals.
Children and teens consume more calories and take in fewer nutrients when they eat at either fast-food or full-service restaurants when compared with meals they eat at home, according to a recent study from the University of Illinois at Chicago.
When eating out, children tend to eat more high-fat, high-sodium food and drink more sugar-sweetened beverages, say researchers who looked at data from more than 9,000 children between the ages of 2 and 19 who were included in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.
But if you’re not able to prepare a meal at home, you may be better off with restaurant carryout. Adolescents consumed half the amount of soft drinks when eating restaurant fare at home, compared with dining in a restaurant, where free refills on drinks may be available, according to the research published online by the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.