Eat Slower for Better Health
Science has proven that the speed that you eat is an important factor in how your body digests food, hunger levels, and even weight gain. If you eat too quickly you run the risk of putting on extra pounds because you are not giving your brain enough time to respond to — and suppress — your hunger.
Many people eat too quickly because of time constraints, but the problem with eating too quickly is that it takes about 20 minutes from the time you take you first bite until your brain gets the signals that you have had enough to eat. During that 20 minute window, it is very easy to eat far too many calories, and this overeating is what leads to weight gain.
Studies have shown that people who are overweight eat fewer calories when they slow down the pace of their eating. Eating more slowly results in feeling full without having to eat as much, and the resulting reduction in calories can prevent a person from gaining several pounds each year.
Studies have also shown that those who are at a normal weight eat 88 fewer calories per meal when they slow down their pace of eating, while overweight people eat 58 fewer calories. If a person eats three meals every day, that results in 96,360 fewer calories every year for a normal weight person, and 63,510 calories for an overweight person! The reduction in calories can have a major impact on weight as you can see, as one pound of fat has 3,500 calories, so an overweight person can avoid putting on almost 20 pounds by simply slowing down their pace of eating.
Even though it can be difficult to slow down the speed that you eat when you are in a hurry or when you are hungry, you should always try to do so. Also, when you slow down the speed that you eat you should also be sure to thoroughly chew your food, because chewing stimulates digestive enzymes and it helps your digestive system. If you don’t chew thoroughly, food can pass through your body without being properly digested and it can cause many problems such as bacteria buildup and digestion difficulties.
There are other benefits to slowing down the speed at which you eat: you get to actually enjoy your meal and experience the flavour and texture of the food you are eating!