“One More Bite?” Melora Hardin’s Family Food Rules (Video)

Melora Hardin, from “The Office,” plays the hysterical character Jan Levenson, but she is serious about healthy food for her two young girls. She wants mealtime to be fun and not a place for negotiation and power struggles. This is easier said than done. Through trial and error she figured out what works for her family. She and her husband, Gildart Jackson, have a few simple strategies based on the basic idea of never saying “eat one more bite and you can have dessert.” Parent Earth interviewed Melora and filmed her family’s breakfast to see how she does it.

Melora says that it was hard making the change, but that with patience and persistence she made it work, “the kids really took to it.” Her goal is for her kids to listen to their own bodies and make healthy choices for themselves. It requires a lot of talking with your children and in the video she shares handy phrases any parent can use.

Melora Hardin’s Family Food Rules:
Desserts are only served on the weekend
The kitchen is always stocked with fresh fruits that the kids can eat anytime
Kids decide when they are done eating and when they are full
Dessert comes after dinner
Special occasions, like birthdays, are exceptions to the rule
Kids get involved in the kitchen and make cooking fun

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Val M.
Val M.2 years ago


Aud Nordby
Aud nordby2 years ago


Teresa Wlosowicz
Teresa W.2 years ago

Great parenting? She seems to be a fanatic...

Teresa Wlosowicz
Teresa W.2 years ago

Poor kids.

Lynn Christy
Lynn Christy2 years ago

Very good teaching... I am from the generation that was constantly told, clean your plate there are children starving... I have battled my weight all my life... so I never made me children eat when they said they were full, but did what this gal did, told them they could be done but not to come back in an hour claiming to be hungry... neither of my daughters have a problem with their weight... it just makes sense... thanks... =)

J.L. A.
JL A.3 years ago

good tips

Michele Wilkinson

Thank you

Jennifer C.
Past Member 3 years ago

Thank you.

Lynn C.
Lynn C.3 years ago

Now t h a t is great parenting!

Robert O.
Robert O.4 years ago