How Dingdong Dantes raises healthy eaters

On top of being an award-winning actor, in-demand host and busy entrepreneur, Dingdong Dantes is as dedicated, if not more, to his role as a father.

Dantes is currently raising daughter Zia, 7, and Sixto, 4, with wife Marian Rivera.

Since he and actress Rivera are both visible on the small screen — and preparing for their Metro Manila Film Festival entry, “Rewind” — Dantes revealed that like other working parents, they had to ask for support from family members when work beckons.

Dingdong Dantes and wife Marian Rivera are hands-on parents to their children, Zia and Sixto. INSTAGRAM PHOTO/DONGDANTES

“I admit it’s hard to be a parent when you also have to juggle a career. That’s why I’m very thankful to our mothers — my mom and Marian’s mom — as well as my sister who take care of our children whenever we’re both called on set,” Dantes admitted on the sidelines of an event.

But when they are at home, Dantes assures they are 100 percent hands-on. Asked of their style, the actor said one of the methods they use is parent modeling.

For one, in encouraging their children to eat healthily, Dantes said they set examples for Zia and Sixto.

“We try to balance our food. Whatever we eat, our children eat. We, as parents, really have to be their role models, so we eat the nutritious food we want them to have.”

That doesn’t mean, however, that the kids don’t enjoy their meals. Dantes said Filipino food rule the house, especially since his wife is a great cook.

He is also unapologetic with his love for the local cuisine, “We appreciate all kinds of food, but our go-to, our comfort food, is truly Filipino cuisine.”

Dantes’ love for Filipino dishes makes him the perfect face of Mesa chain of restaurants.

Among Dantes’ favorite local dishes are Crispychon and Laing. But he also encourages future diners to try new items such as Pampano Dayap Chili (pampano fish simmered in dayap chili sauce and served with a lime wheel, wansuy and siling labuyo), its alternative option Pampano Ginger Soya; Grilled Spareribs; and new noodle dish Locanton (egg noodle dish sautéed with baguio beans, carrots, cabbage, chicken liver, crispy pork and more).

“I really love local dishes and I try to share my favorites with my loved ones,” Dantes finally noted.

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