Whoa! Slow Down: Eating Slowly Is Good For You.

Did your mother ever tell to slow down when you ate? I know that there were times my mother considered giving me and my brother a shovel to eat with during dinner. As growing boys, it seemed like we could not get enough to eat, nor get that food down our gullets fast enough. Fortunately, for our health and dinner time decorum, my brother and I now no longer need the thousands of extra calories and we consume our food at a much slower speed. And while I think my mother was telling me to slow down because she wanted to instill good table manners in me, she was doing me a favor.
In a study released by the American Heart Association, researchers have found that people who eat too fast, are more likely to become obese and develop metabolic syndrome diseases, such as heart disease, stroke and diabetes. Fast eaters were 11.6% more likely to develop these diseases than slower eaters. It is believed the reason for this is that there is a time lapse between when you are “full” to when your brain registers that your appetite has been sated. So, by eating faster, the eater is more likely to consume more calories before they realize that they are full.

Metabolic syndrome conditions occur when a person has three or more of these measurements:

  • Waistline larger than 40 inches in men and 35 inches in women.
  • Triglycerides levels of 150 milligrams or more.
  • “Good” HDL cholesterol levels of less than 40 mg/dL in men and 50 mg/dL in women.
  • High blood pressure, with the top number at 130 or more and the bottom number at 80 or more.
  • Fasting blood sugar, or glucose, of 100 mg/dL or greater.

To read more about this study and others, take a look at this report from the American Heart Association here.

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