Mindless Eating

Do you sometimes sit down and watch television after finish eat your dinner then sudden you have a urge to have that last popcorn filed bag or candy bar or even ice cream? You know you should not have it but your mind tells you go ahead. No one will know. That is what you would call Mindless Eating. Not being aware of this craving has even happen but only until you hit that scale. How does this happen? What can you do about this?


There are 6 steps that can help you to get a hold of Mindless Eating.


1. Use a bigger Fork


A study published in the Journal of Consumer Research shows that restaurant-goers who eat with really big forks (20 percent bigger than a normal fork you'd find at a restaurant) eat less food and leave more on their plates than people who eat with really small forks.
A possible explanation for this finding is that when people use small forks to eat, they feel like they are not making any big progress in eating their meal and quelling their hunger pangs, TIME reported. In addition, the restaurant-goers who ate with the smaller forks and were given bigger portions of food at much more food than if they just had the smaller forks or if they just had the bigger portions.

 

2. Eat from a smaller bowl.


Research from the Georgia Institute of Technology shows that people eat 31 percent more ice cream when they eat out of a 34-ounce bowl, rather than 17-ounce one, Science Daily reported. Researchers explained that's because people eat about 92 percent of what they serve themselves -- so if you serve yourself more, you'll eat more.


3. Get Some Sleep


Columbia University researchers found that sleep deprivation can also lead to more calories consumed. They found that women who only got 4 hours sleep the night before ate 329 more calories in a nine-hour period compared with if they weren't sleep deprived, while men ate 263 more calories when sleep-deprived. "It has an impact on cognitive restraint," study researcher Marie-Pierre St. Onge told Third Age. "High-fat food is tempting, and maybe on short sleep you can't restrain yourself as well, while on full sleep you can resist more easily."


4. Mind Your Environment


WHERE you eat your food could also factor in to how much you eat and whether you're eating food even though you're not hungry, according to research from the University of Southern California.


Researchers had movie-goers say whether they were regular popcorn-eaters or not, and then they had them eat either stale popcorn or freshly popped popcorn. The regular popcorn-eaters ate just as much stale popcorn as fresh popcorn, while people who didn't consider themselves regular popcorn-eaters ate significantly less stale popcorn than fresh since it didn't taste as good.


"The results show just how powerful our environment can be in triggering unhealthy behavior," study researcher David Neal said in a statement. "Sometimes willpower and good intentions are not enough, and we need to trick our brains by controlling the environment instead."


5. Hide the Junk Food


Research from Cornell University shows that we are three times more likely to eat the first thing that we see, compared with the fifth thing we see.


In that study, researchers took photographs of 100 kitchen cupboards and asked the owners to keep records of what they ate. Researchers also tried moving the food around in the cupboards to see if that impacted their food choices -- and found that it did.
The research shows that "we end up being masters of our own demise, to some extent," study researcher Professor Brian Wansink, Ph.D., author of "Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think," told HuffPost.


6. Eat Using Your Non-Dominant Hand


Research published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin shows that eating with your non-dominant hand can help you to decrease the amount of food you consume, CNN reported.


The finding was part of the same movie-theater/popcorn study, where it was discovered that environment plays a part in mindless eating. Like in that experiment, researchers gave study participants either fresh or stale popcorn. They found that people who used their non-dominant hands and ate the stale popcorn ate 30 percent less than if they used their dominant hands, CNN reported.


So the next time you decided to eat that chocolate chip cookies, make sure you remember these six tips and apply to your mindless eating episode

 

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I am Denine Rogers, MS, RDN, LD, FAND a integrative dietitian nutritionist and wellness coach. So excited that you are viewing my blog!

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