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Eating slowly helps to reduce hunger

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In a reasearch it is found that both normal weight and overweight or obese group members consumed more water during the slow meal

eat_slowly jpgWashington: Eating slowly can actually help reduce hunger, a new study led by an Indian-origin scientist has found.

It is believed that a contributing factor to weight gain is the increase in energy intake. Research suggests that the ability to control energy intake may be affected by the speed at which we eat.

Researchers in the Department of Kinesiology at Texas Christian University looked at how eating speed affects calories consumed during a meal in both normal weight subjects as well as overweight or obese subjects.

The investigators also collected data on feelings of hunger and fullness before and after the fast-paced and slow-paced meals and water consumption during the meals.

They asked a group of normal-weight subjects and a group of overweight or obese subjects to consume two meals in a controlled environment.

All subjects ate one meal at a slow speed, for which they were instructed to imagine that they had no time constraints, take small bites, chew thoroughly, and pause and put the spoon down between bites.

They ate a second meal at a fast speed, for which they were instructed to imagine that they had a time constraint, take large bites, chew quickly, and not pause and put the spoon down.

At the conclusion of the study, researchers found that only normal-weight subjects had a statistically significant reduction in caloric consumption during the slow compared to the fast meal: 88 kcal less for the normal weight group, versus only 58 kcal less for the overweight or obese group.

“Slowing the speed of eating led to a significant reduction in energy intake in the normal-weight group, but not in the overweight or obese group,” said lead author Meena Shah, professor in the Department of Kinesiology at Texas Christian University.

“A lack of statistical significance in the overweight and obese group may be partly due to the fact that they consumed less food during both eating conditions compared to the normal-weight subjects.

“It is possible that the overweight and obese subjects felt more self-conscious, and thus ate less during the study,” Shah said.

Despite the differences in caloric consumption between the normal-weight and overweight and obese subjects, the study found some similarities. Both groups felt less hungry later on after the slow meal than after the fast meal.

“In both groups, ratings of hunger were significantly lower at 60 minutes from when the meal began during the slow compared to the fast eating condition,” added Shah.

“These results indicate that greater hunger suppression among both groups could be expected from a meal that is consumed more slowly,” she said.

Also, both the normal weight and overweight or obese groups consumed more water during the slow meal. The results are published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

PTI

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