We tend to concentrate only on what we eat when we are trying to lose weight or avoid weight gain. Ketogenic diets, plant-based diets, and low-fat diets are common topics of discussion.
The speed with which we consume is only a passing idea. According to a new research published in BMJ Open, we should pay greater attention to how quickly we eat.
Let’s dig down the study’s results before you encourage everyone to count how many times they chew their meal or start giving out stopwatches at the dinner table. But before that, let’s also take a quick look at the main question we have.
Can chewing slowly help you lose weight?
Yes, chewing slowly will assist you to lose weight. Nutritionally, eating more slowly while increasing your chew count does not seem to make much of a difference. However, evidence shows that it may aid in weight loss and appetite management.
According to early studies, chewing until “no lumps remain” increases the quantity of calories used by the body during digestion by around 10% for a 300-calorie lunch.
(On the other hand, eating quickly burns hardly any calories.) Chewing food fully improves blood flow to the stomach and intestines.
According to the study’s authors, by spending a little more time to chew, one may conceivably burn an additional 2,000 calories every month.
1. What has the research shown?
Researchers studied over 60,000 diabetics in Japan who underwent health check-ups between 2008 and 2013.
In response to a growing incidence of persons with excess weight, the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare established a health check-up program to detect risk factors for weight gain.
Screeners questioned respondents about their eating and sleeping patterns throughout these check-ups.
People were classified as fast, regular, or slow eaters based on how quickly they ate. They also looked at how often people miss breakfast, nibble after supper, and eat two hours before bedtime.
Slow eaters were found to be much skinnier than quick eaters, according to the study. They discovered that slow eaters were 42 percent less likely than quick eaters to be obese.
Regular speed eaters were also shown to be 29% less likely to be overweight. Women were far more sluggish eaters than males. Overall, 22,070 individuals ate quickly, 33,455 people ate slowly, and 4,192 people ate thoughtfully and slowly.
Eating snacks after supper and eating within two hours of bedtime at least three times a week were also linked to a higher BMI, according to the study (BMI).
Even though the researchers found no link between missing breakfast and weight increase, I still recommend having breakfast.
2. What can we learn out of it?
I’m not surprised by the results. Prior research has connected quick eating to blood sugar problems and weight growth.
Although no one has fully explained how quick eating causes weight gain, the link is most likely related to the fact that fast eating allows you to consume more calories before your body detects satiety.
Even competitive eaters advise keeping a quick pace and avoiding slowing down.
It also doesn’t surprise me that persons who ate late at night or had after-dinner snacks been heavier than those who didn’t.
The human body isn’t designed to eat late at night because of our circadian rhythms—we aren’t nocturnal animals.
Changes in eating habits may alter obesity, BMI, and waist circumference, the study’s authors found. Interventions focused at slowing down eating might help to avoid obesity and the health concerns that come with it. Fasting is sometimes required.
As a resident physician, I’ve seen people finishing their lunches while rushing to patients’ rooms for a code blue cardiac arrest.
This research suggests that fasting should not become a habit. I also don’t advocate eating late at night or snacking after supper, based on this research.
If you’re worried about gaining weight or attempting to reduce weight, this research suggests that you should consider not just what you eat but also how you eat.
3. Chewing slowly to lose weight is not something new
For a long time, people have advised others to chew their meals thoroughly. Slow and thorough chewing is regarded crucial to healthy digestive health in Ayurveda, a system of medicine originated in India over 7,000 years ago. It helps to separate indigestible components from required nutrients.
4. What more is there to learn?
According to a research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, obese individuals chew their food less than lean ones, even when they eat the same stuff and take the same size bits.
The slim and obese subjects in the study both ate less when the researchers required them to chew each meal 40 times.
Their levels of gut chemicals associated to appetite and fullness increased when they chewed their meal a little longer than normal. The research authors stated that improving chewing action might become a beneficial method for controlling obesity.
Extra chewing also slows down the eating process, which might be another explanation for its health benefits. Meena Shah, a nutrition professor at Texas Christian University, investigated the impact of eating speed on meal size.
She discovered that those who eat slowly consume less food. She believes that slow eating might help individuals eat more consciously and tune into their own sense of fullness.
As you can see, chewing will help you to lose weight fast. This fact is proven from numerous studies as well.
Those findings were consistent independent of a person’s BMI, drinking habits, or frequency of exercise.
Fast food, on the other hand, has been related to a 35 percent increased risk of metabolic syndrome, a group of health issues that includes high blood pressure and blood sugar, low cholesterol, and extra belly fat.