People could benefit from sharing meals

Like puppies, our eating habits and food tastes derive largely from what our mothers taught us...

Like puppies, our eating habits and food tastes derive largely from what our mothers taught us. If they fed us fries and takeout chicken, chances are we will continue through adulthood to prefer meals made up primarily of greasy foods loaded with salt … unless we study food guides and adapt to new foods and meal regimens.

A 10-photo series titled, “How We Eat Alone,” published in a recent Huffington Post, reveals much about today’s younger generation and their mealtime customs.

In the first photo snapped at 8:13 p.m., a 20-year-old model “concentrates on her food while reviewing her busy day.” Her food consists of a substantial whole wheat sandwich, five mini carrots, and a glass of water. No milk. No fresh fruits or veggies. No nuts. Her right hand holds the glass of water while her left hand is poised to text.

In another photo, a 28-year-old musician has a 1:20 a.m. meal following drum rehearsals. Wielding chopsticks in the air, he sits before a table laden with an array of deli take-out containers typical of The Big Bang Theory. His attention is on a computer screen. A standby cell phone waits inches away.

At 6:54 p.m., a designer sitting cross legged on her bed pecks at a meal of leftovers as she watches her favourite TV show. Except for a few peas, her entire meal appears cooked and colourless. Again no fresh fruits or veggies.

In another late night scenario, three architects remain at their conference table which is buried under documents and drafts stuffing themselves on pizza and beer. Nothing hints of camaraderie, savouring of the pizza, or relaxation. An occasional pizza or beer is fine but when it becomes the norm, it can lead to sleepless nights, sleeping pills, obesity and a dependence on laxatives.

Granted, no identifiable sweets or pastries crowd these scenes. But all of these meals lack eye appeal and the recommended variety of food groups to maintain a healthy body.

The photo most revealing of a family’s dynamics pictures a 13-year-old girl sitting on her bed eating her favourite Italian food prepared by her father, while she watches a TV show on her laptop. She lives with her father and her stepmother yet she eats alone in her bedroom? Why?

Is it by her choice? Is there family friction? Do her parents avail themselves of a mealtime gathering to grill the daughter on her grades, her choice of friends, her wardrobe selections?

My impressions of today’s families come from reading, watching news items, and a cross-section of TV shows and advertisements. The impression I have is that too many families live separate lives under a single roof.

Parents work long hours to pay for hockey memberships, dance lessons, and other cultural activities for the kids when what the kids might crave most is time to talk with mom and dad, to toss a ball around in the backyard or watch a TV show together.

When a father is so out of touch with his teens he can’t name their favourite TV show, movie, or snack food, a huge gulf separates dad from his offspring. Both could benefit from shared activities.

That’s why I was so taken watching a grandfather walk hand in hand with his three-year-old granddaughter on their way to the public library. Three Tuesday forenoons in a row these two crossed Davis Avenue on their way to the library as I unlocked my truck parked on Market Street. In the morning quiet, their lively conversation carried clearly as they avoided stepping on sidewalk cracks like Jack Nicholson in “As Good As It Gets.”

Bet Grandpa knows her favourite toy, cartoon and colour.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

City of Terrace Mayor Carol Leclerc, left, received the plaque from Terrace Community Foundation Chair, Norm Parry at George Little Park. (Binny Paul/Terrace Standard)
VIDEO: Terrace Community Foundation marks 10 years as a philanthropic organization in the city

The plaque presented by the Foundation will be permanently displayed at City Hall

Terrace Search and Rescue vice president Dave Jephson during longline training exercises in 2018. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Terrace Search and Rescue Operations spike in 2020

Last year was the busiest ever for Search and Rescue groups in B.C.

Terrace city staff are in the process of reaching out to local and Indigenous governments in the northwest to form a lobby group to pressure the provincial government to fix the city’s growing social issues crisis. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Province urged to fix Terrace social services ‘crisis’

City wants to form regional lobby group

The report prepared by Independent Investigations Office of BC said that no offence was committed by the police officer from Lisims/ Nass Valley RCMP detachment while responding to a stabbing incident that led to an in-custody death. (Black Press file photo)
Nass Valley RCMP officer cleared in October 2020 police-involved death

Independent Investigations Office of B.C. concludes no offence committed by police officer

Photo collage of loved ones lost to substance use and overdose. (Photo courtesy Moms Stop The Harm)
B.C. overdose deaths still rising 5 years after public health emergency declared

Moms Stop the Harm calls on B.C. to provide safe supply in response to deadly illicit drug use

Demonstrators at the legislature on April 14 called on the province to decriminalize drug possession and provide widespread access to regulated safe supply across B.C. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)
Rally calls for decriminalization, safe supply on 5th anniversary of overdose emergency declaration

From 2016 to the end of February, 7,072 British Columbians died due to overdose

(Government of Canada)
Liberal MP caught stark naked during House of Commons video conference

William Amos, in Quebec, appeared on the screens of his fellow members of Parliament completely naked

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Feb. 1, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps to 1,168 Wednesday, nearly 400 in hospital

Now 120 coronavirus patients in intensive care, six more deaths

Moss covered branches are seen in the Avatar Old Growth Forest near Port Renfrew on Vancouver Island, B.C. Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. blockades aimed at protecting old-growth forests reveal First Nation split

Two Pacheedaht chiefs say they’re ‘concerned about the increasing polarization over forestry activities’ in the territory

Richmond RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng said, in March, the force received a stand-out number of seven reports of incidents that appeared to have “racial undertones.” (Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
‘Racially motivated’ incidents on the rise in B.C’s 4th largest city: police

Three incidents in Richmond are currently being invested as hate crimes, says RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng

Commercial trucks head south towards the Pacific Highway border crossing Wednesday (April 14, 2021). The union representing Canadian border officers wants its members to be included on the frontline priority list for the COVID-19 vaccine. (Aaron Hinks photo)
CBSA officers’ union calls for vaccine priority in B.C.

Border officers at ports including, YVR and land crossings should ‘not be left behind’

A still from the video taken of a violent arrest on May 30, 2020 in downtown Kelowna. (File)
Kelowna Mountie charged with assault for caught-on-camera violent arrest

Const. Siggy Pietrzak was filmed punching a suspected impaired driver at least 10 times during an arrest

A screenshot from a Nuu-chah-nulth healing song and performance created in collaboration between Hjalmer Wenstob and Timmy Masso. (Screenshot from YouTube)
VIDEO: Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation brothers produce COVID-19 healing song

Hjalmer Wenstob and Timmy Masso share dance and inspiration.

Most Read