Health and Nutrition for Kids – Meditation

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 14,634
    Karen Schachter, a licensed clinical social worker and a certified health and nutrition counselor, discusses how to teach mediation to young children. Meditation is a great tool to quiet your body and quiet your mind.

    Karen Schachter

    Karen Schachter is a food and eating expert helping families who want to eat better, feel better, and develop positive relationships to food and their bodies. She loves helping parents who are interested in improving their children’s eating habits without driving themselves – or their children – crazy. Karen received her Masters in clinical social work from Smith College School for Social Work in 1994 and her nutrition training from The Institute for Integrative Nutrition in 2006. She received additional training at the Washington Psychoanalytic Institute and has practiced psychotherapy with children and adults for over 13 years. She brings her psychotherapy experience, her nutritional training, and her experience as a mother of two young children to her innovative work. Her ability to help clients understand their own eating – and how they feed their children - from a nutritional and psychological mindset allows them to make real, long-term shifts in their eating. As a result, they often experience an improvement in their mood, their energy, and their weight, as well as decreased cravings, a resolution of the diet-binge cycle, improved self-esteem and lowered anxiety and stress levels. Parents report that children are eating better, resulting in improved behavior, mood and attention as well. Best of all, although many people come in initially to change their eating, most leave feeling that their life has improved in many other ways as well.

    Karen Schachter: Hi, I am Karen Schachter, in this segment I am going to be teaching you how to teach meditation to young children. Meditation is a great tool to quiet your body and quiet your mind. This is a really important skill for all of us to know. It can be also really helpful to do before we eat. When our bodies are calm and peaceful we are much more likely to absorb the nutrients from the food that we eat. I also use mediation with young children because it helps them tune into their bodies. It can help them know when they are hungry and when they are full, which can help prevent overeating, emotional eating, and all kinds of eating problems when they are older.

    Okay guys, we are going to do a little bit of mediation. Everyone sit in crisscross applesauce, with your hands like this, turned over with your palms facing up. I am going to ring the bell like this. This is what its going to sound like. Do you guys still hear that sound? Children: Yeah. Karen Schachter: Yeah, its still going. We are going to turn on our listening ears and we are going to close -- what are we going to close? We are going to button our mouth and after we cant hear that sound anymore, can you still hear it? We are going to turn our hands over and we are going to do three belly breaths. Take big breaths in to make your belly like a balloon and then breathe out. We are going to do this with our eyes closed. When you are done with your three belly breaths, you can open your eyes, but lets keep our mouths closed. Child: I want to keep my mouth closed, but I dont want to close my eyes.

    Karen Schachter: Okay, you dont have to close your eyes. Do whatever you are comfortable with. If you want to close your eyes, you can, but if you dont, you dont have to. You guys ready? Okay, heres the bell, hands up. Did you guys do your belly breaths? Can you put your hand on your belly? How does your belly feel; is it hungry; is it full or is it kind of in the middle?

    Child: Kind of in the middle.

    Karen Schachter: Kind of in the middle. How about yours, is it hungry? Child: In the middle.

    Karen Schachter: In the middle too. How does your body feel, does it feel a little quieter and more relaxed?

    Child: Yeah.

    Karen Schachter: Good, great, thanks guys.