Slow down - eating too quickly will likely cause weight gain

October 22, 2008 in Healthy Eating, Nutrition Topics in the News, Weight Management

Slow down - eating too quickly will likely cause weight gain

People who gobble food and eat until they're full are three times more likely to become overweight compared with people who eat slowly and stop before they are full, according to a Japanese study.

In this new report, 1,122 men and 2,165 women aged 30 to 69 were asked to track eating habits such as how quickly they ate and whether they ate until they were full. The researchers linked these two eating behaviors to body mass index and total caloric intake.

Around half of the men and over half of the women said they ate until they were full. Just under half of the men and about a third of the women said they ate quickly.

For men and women, eating quickly and eating until full was associated with higher caloric intake and a higher body mass index when compared to their peers who did not speed eat until they were stuffed.

The researchers say the combination of the two behaviors - eating fast and eating until full - have a "supra-additive effect" on risk of becoming overweight.

Research done earlier this year found that pausing between bites and chewing each bite 20 to 30 times can help women eat fewer calories. Drinking water between bites can also help you slow down and think about how full you are. Using smaller plates or bowls is another way to help you feel satified with smaller portions.

In 2004 the Canadian Community Health Survey reported that 59 percent of Canadian adults are overweight or obese.

For more tips on how to avoid racing through a meal and eating too much, check out our nutrition strategies to prevent overeating.

This study was published in the October 20, 2008 issue of the British Medical Journal.

All research on this web site is the property of Leslie Beck Nutrition Consulting Inc. and is protected by copyright. Keep in mind that research on these matters continues daily and is subject to change. The information presented is not intended as a substitute for medical treatment. It is intended to provide ongoing support of your healthy lifestyle practices.