A new study released today by the National Center of Addiction and
Substance Abuse at Columbia revealed how important family dinners are in
combating teen drug use.


engagement in children’s lives is key to raising healthy, drug-free
kids and one of the simplest acts of parental engagement is sitting down
to the family dinner,” CASA chairperson and founder Joseph A. Califano,
Jr. said in a statement. “Seventeen years of surveying teens has taught
us that the more often children have dinner with their families the
less likely they are to smoke, drink or use drugs.”

The difference
boils down to how much time children spend with their parents.   The
study compared teens that spent 21 or more hours a week with their
parents with teens that spend 7 or fewer hours with their families.

compared, the students who spend a lesser amount of time with their
families turned to alcohol or drugs at a lot higher rate than the other
set of children.

America’s Parenting Coach, Tim Chapman, says that
the study shows how easy it is to have your children on the 21 or more
hours side of the line, “Not only can you have them eat with you, but
have them active in the food making process, from the decision on which
meal to make, all the way to serving up the food.     Parents do not
realize just how valuable spending time with their children can be.   It
can have a huge impact on the choices those teens make down the road.”