We all know what we should be eating in order to keep our body in top condition, but what about how we eat?
The majority of us are guilty of not spending enough time relaxing and enjoying a good meal, but eating fast could be causing us health issues no matter how nutrient packed our meals are. Eating fast is independently associated with insulin resistance (Otsuka et al., 2008) and obesity (Otsuka et al., 2006). So if you are the Scooby doo of meal times, it might be time for a change!
Benefits of eating slowly:
- You are far less likely to suffer from indigestion/heartburn if you chew your food more and take a breath between each mouthful!
- It takes ~20 minutes for your brain to register that you are full, so if you only take 5-10 minutes to eat your meal you won’t realise how full you are!
- If you chew more, your stomach and intestine will be far better at digesting the nutrients you have ingested.
- You will be able to enjoy the flavours, texture and smells of your meals more.
- It will encourage you to eat healthy because junk food doesn’t taste good for very long if you eat it slowly. It is designed to taste nice for the first few bites because it is expected that you will shovel it down and carry on with your busy day!
- Eating slowly is associated with better digestion and a faster metabolism.
- It is also a great opportunity to relax and engage in some social activity while you eat.
Otsuka, Tamakoshi, Yatsuya et al.., Eating Fast Leads to Insulin Resistance; Findings in middle-aged Japanese Men and Women, 2008, Preventive Medicine, 46(2): 154-9.
Otsuka, Tamakoshi, Yatsuya et al.., Eating Fast Leads to Obesity: Findings Based on Self-Administered Questionnaires, 2006, Journal of Epidemiology, 16(3): 117-24.