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HHS Healthbeat

Eating family-style

Eating past when you’re full is one way to pile on weight, and researchers say it can start in childhood – but doesn’t have to.

At the University of Illinois, researcher Brent McBride saw this in Head Start programs where children learn how to help themselves from food on the table rather than being given pre-plated food and being encouraged to clean their plates.

McBride was looking at whether Head Start teachers encouraged kids to not overeat – and he says mostly they did.

"If you want to start thinking about helping children to self-regulate calorie intake, think about focusing on internal cues – eat when you’re hungry, stop when your body tells you you’re full."

The study in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics was supported by HHS’ Administration for Children and Families.

Learn more at healthfinder.gov.

HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

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