Eat more slowly

Breakfast is being served on the way to work, lunch is being rushed down and dinner is being watched in front of the TV: nowadays, fewer and fewer people consciously take time for individual meals. Food is increasingly regarded as an activity that is best done quickly and casually. But who in the long run his food down, must fear negative consequences for his health. By contrast, slow food can have a positive effect on our body and even make it leaner. Slow food can be learned at any age.

Dr. Martin Hofmeister is an ecotrophologist and works in the Department of Nutrition and Food of the Consumer Center Bavaria. In the interview, he explains why slow food is healthy and what tricks are there to get used to slower eating habits.

What is typical of today's eating habits?

Hofmeister: "Nowadays, it's common to buy something for breakfast on the way to work, eat at a nearby fast food lunchtime and have dinner in a restaurant, or buy a baker's snack as a main or snack meal." "Snacking" and "out-of-home" consumption are currently very popular in Germany - eating in passing has become a matter of course, and we usually do not take enough time for each meal. "

What does that mean for health consequences?

Hofmeister: "Since we barely have time to eat, the food is often taken down quickly and in large bites, which is not good for your health." In the word meal, the term time is included - we should take our time for our meal. "

How can one recognize that one is too fast?

Hofmeister: "An initial indication of an increased eating speed is when you regularly take less than 15 minutes for a meal, and to rate your eating speed individually, you should ask yourself questions like:

  • Do I take time to eat?
  • How do I rate my eating speed myself (very fast, fast, normal, slow, very slow)?
  • Do I eat more quickly and devour the food or do I eat slowly and enjoy the food? "

What are the risks of eating too fast?

Hofmeister: "In both children and adults, there is an association between eating too fast and being overweight.The satiety starts 15 to 20 minutes after the onset of food intake, but many people have already stopped eating at this point Fast eaters not at all, whether they are already full or not and often eat more than necessary.

The control of the speed of eating is therefore an important factor for the perception of satiety and thus also for the limitation of the portion size. Obese people should therefore be advised to slow down eating habits as it can lead to greater weight loss. "

Are there any other disadvantages?

Hofmeister: "Those who eat too fast suffer heartburn more often after eating than someone who eats more slowly, and digestion works better if you eat more slowly and chew more often, as the food is already better chopped There is also an association between overeating and the onset of the metabolic syndrome. "

Is it true that the food tastes better if you eat more slowly?

Hofmeister: The connection between slow eating speed and better taste has been known for a long time, and those who eat too fast can not really grasp the composition and flavorings of the food, but if the food is chewed enough by frequent chewing, it can distribute the flavoring in conjunction with the saliva better and we perceive the taste more intense. "

Is it possible to get used to slower eating habits as an adult?

Hofmeister: "Of course, adults can still get used to reducing their eating pace - for example, if you only use smaller cutlery, you'll eat smaller portions per fork, avoiding unnecessary hiccups.

Children, however, find it easier to learn new habits. Since children primarily learn by imitating other people, in the presence of children, special attention should be paid to a slow eating pace. "

How can I proceed if I want to learn to eat more slowly?

Hofmeister: "It is generally important to make minimal changes in everyday life and to increase them slowly, and for every change introduced, it is important to teach children and adults to make the change over a trial period of six to eight weeks.

Most people who are willing to change do not go through this period of time - often because they have too many changes to start with - and then fall back into old behaviors. Therefore, it is important to remain realistic and to set manageable intermediate goals. For every interim destination, the six to eight-week period must be adhered to - only then can the next change come. "

What tips do you use to "train" slower eating habits?

Hofmeister: "First of all, you should allow enough time for each meal - you should reserve at least 20 minutes for the meal, and you should always eat at the set table instead of with your hands with a knife, fork and spoon, but there are a few more tricks with which one can lower the eating tempo:

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