Jessica Siegel's Healthy Family Blog - Gelson's


Lousy Local Conditions Affect Eating


Despite the holiday craziness, my girls are surprisingly well rested and cared for this week.  They have been taking it easy and getting plenty of rest instead of running around and being over-stimulated as they unintentionally end up being most other weeks.  We don’t try to over-extend them, but it just happens with long, exciting says at school and later than intended family dinners.  This situation is sometimes called “lousy local conditions” and it can affect kids’ behavior in surprising ways.  Betsy Brown Braun explains in her blog post Lousy Local Conditions


I’ve noticed the benefits of optimal local conditions at dinner times.  The girls are more pleasant at meals and are eating well.  Last night for example, I served Black Bean Quesadillas, roasted purple cauliflower, and steamed asparagus.  They both came to the table happy and ready to eat.  Big J asked me to pass the purple cauliflower first, then the asparagus, while Little J spread guacamole and olives on her quesadilla.  The meal was so relaxed and pleasant; I wasn’t worried about what they were and were not eating and they were feeling good about being in charge of their own eating.

Our hectic schedules can’t realistically be changed; this relaxed week just made me realize how much being tired and disconnected from us can negatively impact kids’ eating.  I never really gave it that much weight, but several days’ worth of slowing down and connecting seems to have removed the interference of lousy local conditions and crystallized just how capable my kids can be with their eating and that I can do a good job with feeding when our relationships are being nurtured.  I plan to cultivate these beneficial conditions even more over their holiday break with the hopes of retaining some benefits once we resume our normal busy schedules in January.