6 Compelling Reasons To Become A Slow Eater

If you were to create a list of your least favourite dinner companions, chances are that a fussy toddler or that friend who always keeps you waiting by taking aeons to complete her meal, top it. But studies show that these two might actually hold the secret to eating what you want and yet keeping a slim figure. While it may seem impossible to carve out the time to eat your meals slower despite your hectic schedule, the benefits of this far outstrip the efforts.

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1. The Rule of 20

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It takes your stomach 20 minutes to realise it’s full and then pass on the message to your brain. Now imagine if you were short on time and scoffed down a large pizza quicker than the Cookie Monster. Your stomach wouldn’t have had the time to let you know that you’re full and that you need to put down that last slice. Eating leisurely allows you to

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realise when you’ve had enough to eat and saves you plenty of unnecessary calories, almost 100 according to a few studies.

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2. Bust the Bloat

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When a mouthful of food is swallowed quickly with very little chewing, the enzymes in your saliva haven’t had sufficient time to break it down and make it easier to digest. As a result, your stomach spends more time trying to digest it and you suffer from bloating and indigestion. Chew your food completely before you swallow to give your stomach a well deserved break.

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3. Clean Out Your Intestines

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Large globules of food hastily swallowed and improperly digested, linger on in your intestines far beyond their best by date. Bacteria then steps in to begin breaking it down, turning the food putrid. From then on, it’s a steady stream

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of fun developments like diarrhoea, constipation, flatulence and skin problems. Eating your food slower could help you avoid all of this, while improving any digestive problems you already have.

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4. Work Those Jaws

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Eating slower forces you to chew more, which in turn keeps your gums strong and healthy. As the bones rooting down your teeth also get a workout, you might be less likely to need dentures as the years go by. Your teeth benefit even more from all that chewing because the increase in saliva production flushes out all the unwelcome bacteria and plaque, which get in the way of a sparkling smile.

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5. Get the Most Out of Every Bite

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If you recall anything from your sixth grade Biology classes, you’ll remember that nutrition absorption takes place in your

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small intestine. When your food is chewed completely, the food particles are smaller and can be more easily absorbed. When you rush through a meal, the particles are much larger and most of it cannot be absorbed, ultimately getting wasted. Simply eating healthier will be of no use to your body unless it can absorb every ounce of goodness from each mouthful.

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6. Make Eating an Experience

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Perhaps the strongest reason to eat slower is that you can enjoy your food a whole lot more. What’s the point of ordering an amazing dish if it’s gone in two minutes? Take the time to really savour each morsel and you’ll find yourself eating far less than if you were to scoff it down without a second thought. If this sounds challenging, try eating more meals with friends and family, the more talkative, the better.

Eating slower can be more difficult in practice than it sounds. If you have the

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best intentions, but still struggle to do it, don’t throw in the towel just yet. Try setting just one meal aside for mindful eating in a day to help you practice. Sitting at a table and putting down your fork in between bites can also encourage you to eat slower.