Cooking With Your Kids success

By on 10/04/2013 in Cllr Bedser, News, Video News

Hundreds of Birmingham families are being transformed into masterchefs in a bid to tackle the city's obesity epidemic.

And Cabinet member for Health and Wellbeing, Cllr Steve Bedser, has hailed the Cooking With Your Kids initiative a huge success.

Over 70 Cooking With Your Kids courses (reaching around 450 families) are run each year by Birmingham's Food Net in Schools (part of Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Trust)

The courses, developed following the success of a healthy eating course with community groups, are run in Birmingham schools, where parents work alongside their children to make and taste healthy dishes, while learning food facts.

Participants report a number of positive results, including:

  • Eating increased number of fruit and veg portions each day
  • Increased awareness of what goes into processed food, ready meals etc
  • Eating fewer takeaways
  • Drinking less fizzy drinks.
  • Reduction in intake of fatty and salty foods
  • Cooking more meals from scratch - eating fewer ready meals.
  • Adults and children being more adventurous - trying new foods.

Cllr Bedser, said: “The feedback from the Cooking With Your Kids initiative is extremely encouraging and shows what can be achieved with the right approach.

“Nobody is underestimating the scale of the obesity challenge but we can begin to tackle this complex issue, if we give people the skills and the knowledge needed to adopt a healthier lifestyle.”

Dr Adrian Phillips added: “The horse meat scandal has made us all think more about what goes into processed foods and it's clear that unless parents understand food labels, they cannot make good choices for themselves and their children. We commission courses such as Cooking with your Kids as we believe that improved food skills can contribute to the battle against obesity.”

Outcomes based on the following three questions (info collected at first and last sessions of 5 session course):

  • Measured by self reported fruit and vegetable intake the previous day
  • Self reported takeaway score ranging from “never” to “2+ a day”
  • Self reported fizzy drink consumption recording the amount of millilitres drunk per week by family.
  • Average increase in adult fruit and veg portions per day of 1.4 portions
  • Average child increase in fruit and veg intake of 1 portions
  • Average decrease in family takeaway portion per week of  0.6 portions
  • Average decrease in family consumption of fizzy drinks per week (ml) of 1540 ml

Selected comments from participants:

What lessons do you take from the course?

  • We have learnt about fats and my daughter has changed her attitude towards food and will try different things. We can cook now with confidence
  • My daughter has learnt how to use a knife and cut the correct way.
  • She has also learnt that she enjoys learning about food and its impact on our bodies
  • I have learnt a lot about how to add more fruit and veg into everyday meal.
  • We have learnt to include more fruit and veg into our daily food intake.
  • We have also been encouraged to consider our daily intake of fat and salt.

What do you cook/buy/ eat now that you didn't before?

  • My children will now eat vegetable lasagne! They are keener to eat vegetables
  • I've also been keen to get my children to try the recipes we have made because they are engaged in cooking it, they are happier to try the foods.
  • I buy more fruit and vegetables now than I used to and try to incorporate them into the daily routine.
  • I have also started cooking more with the children and making things from fresh.
  • I now cook a lot of meals from scratch rather than convenience food
  • We have made the spag bol recipe and will definitely be using that instead of a jar of sauce.

What have you changed in your and your family's lifestyle?

  • Adding more vegetables to my cooking. Looking for healthier alternatives.
  • I've got into habit now of encouraging my children to have fruit instead of having chocolate bars. I myself have broken my habit of fizzy pops. I've been used to drinking a bottle a day, but over the last 3 weeks I have cut down to around 3 bottles in 3 weeks.
  • I will try and add more veg to our meals. I have learnt all about different amounts of fat as a result I have changed how many times we have a takeaway
  • I will also be drinking more fluids and making sure the children do too.
  • I have been cooking more fresh meals and getting the children to help.


For further information contact Geoff Coleman on 0121 303 3501

Tags: , , , , ,


If you enjoyed this article, subscribe now to receive more just like it.