A new study has shown that children whose parents emotionally feed them are more prone to overeating later on in life. Although emotional feeding, or giving children “comfort food” when they’re feeling down, may seem like a good way to cheer them up, it may actually have negative effects in the future.
Emotional eating is eating sweet and high-caloric foods when feeling sad or upset. Some teenagers and adults are susceptible to this and when upset, are more likely to eat a bowl of ice cream than a piece of fruit. This Norwegian study has shown that a reason for emotional eating as a teenager and adult comes from emotional feeding at a young age.
As an alternative, these researchers advise parents to comfort their children by talking and hugging rather than feeding them sweets and high-caloric foods.