A new study suggests that scarfing down food may not only make one look like he is “fresh out” of prison, but it may contribute to weight gain. Basically, the sliders, the poppers, and any other grown-up kiddie foods that one can eat in a bite or two are playing mind tricks on dieters trying to keep off the pounds.

According to results published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, chewing food 40 times instead of a typical 15 times was the magic number for participants to consume 12 percent less calories.

According to Reuters:

Jie Li and colleagues from Harbin Medical University in China gave a typical breakfast to 14 obese young men and 16 young men of normal weight to see if there were differences in how they chewed their food. The researchers also looked to see whether chewing more would lead subjects to eat less and would affect levels of blood sugar or certain hormones that regulate appetite.

While a 12 percent reduction in calories is equivalent to 25 pounds per year, there is no guarantee that one will lose weight because Americans love high calorie drinks, which typically add an average of 300 calories to diets.

In the current study, the team found a connection between the amount of chewing and levels of several hormones that “tell the brain when to begin to eat and when to stop eating,” said co-author Shuran Wang in an email.

More chewing was associated with lower blood levels of ghrelin, a hormone that stimulates appetite, as well as higher levels of CCK, a hormone believed to reduce appetite.

These hormones may “represent useful targets for future obesity therapies,” Wang told Reuters Health, since regulating their levels may help people control their appetite.

The explosion of finger foods in America is one of the great weight loss deterrents. Dollar menus will keep everyone on the fast track towards a 3000 calorie, sedentary lifestyle.

On the other hand, many believe that eating raw foods help people eat slower and more deliberate. Even though there is no scientific evidence to back up raw food enthusiast’s claims, it is difficult to eat a full 500-600 calorie fruit meal without chewing properly and thoroughly.

The goal is to increase the elasticity of your stomach, which will promptly accommodate the extra bites, just as all of your other muscles would elongate if you were to adopt a yoga practice. Do not eat until you hurt but gently encourage your digestive system to regain its flexibility.


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