NEW research into Irish Family meal times, and attitudes to cooking with rice, undertaken by Uncle Ben’s to launch the ‘Begin with Ben’ campaign, has revealed that the average time Offaly families spend together over the course of a week enjoying family meals is a maximum of 50-60 minutes.
When broken down, that is an average of only 8 minutes per day! It appears a number of factors such as working long hours and family pressures have taken their toll on family meal times, resulting in a serious lack of time available to families to spend quality time and enjoy each other’s company over a home cooked meal.
Of those surveyed, 25% said they spend a maximum of 20 minutes together per week; a further 20% said they would spend 25 minutes together, another 20% said they would spend up to 60 minutes, whilst 10% said they would spend between 30 and 45 minutes together.
Not surprisingly, the one day of the week that Irish families spend the most time together over a family meal is Sunday.
Over 45% of those surveyed said they would spend up to 60 minutes together on a Sunday; whilst Tuesdays and Thursdays are the days families spend the least amount of time together.
Uncle Ben’s has teamed up with well known dietician, Aveen Bannon, to launch the ‘Begin with Ben’ campaign which seeks to get Irish people to re-think their meal times. Aveen Bannon, Consultant Dietician, commented: “If you are looking to give your family something different for dinner, a meal that tastes great, is quick and easy cook and is filled with healthy ingredients, rice is a great option to consider.
Not only does it taste great, it really is good for you, and it’s up there in terms of providing healthy choices for family meal. It boils down to this; rice is low in sodium and cholesterol, it’s a great source of energy so provides great fuel for the body.
It’s packed full of vitamins and minerals and has a low GI. When you cook with rice, you are more likely to create a meal filled with fresh vegetables and lean protein. So, if you’re not sure where to start when it comes to making healthy family meals for your family; then Begin with Ben and see how easy it can be.”