Washington DC: You may want to ask your kids not to rush their meals as a new study has suggested that chewing slowly can help prevent excessive weight gain among children.
The University of California study found that waiting 30 seconds in between bites of food allows children to realize they're no longer hungry before they overeat, preventing excessive weight gain.
To lose weight, you need to stop eating. But it's not that simple for most people," said co-author Marcos Intaglietta. "So we decided to investigate how effective eating slowly would be."
The slow eating approach has the advantage of being sustainable over the long term, unlike most diets, because it doesn't require you to change what you eat on a daily basis, said co-author Geert Schmid-Schonbein. It doesn't deprive you of your favorite foods and it can be applied in any cultural and ethnic context.
"You can adopt this slow eating approach for yourself and keep it up for the rest of your life," Schmid-Schonbein said. "You can teach this approach to your children and they can teach it to their children in turn."
Researchers also instructed the student participants to drink a glass of water before each meal and avoid snacks in between meals. The approach was dubbed "Good Manners for a Healthy Future."
The study is published in the journal Pediatric Obesity.