A recent study of over 4,000 Japanese men and women from 20-80 years old examined 3 common eating behaviors and being overweight. I myself am guilty of all of these behaviors at one time or another, and I bet you are too. But over the long run, are you consistently participating in these 3 behaviors? Let’s take a look at each one.
Shoveling food in you gullet between jobs or classes is the classic pose of any college student or young professional. But even your stay-at-home mom or 9 to 5 dad can fall prey to eating quickly. Maybe you've always been a quick eater. Anyone who's grown up in a house with lots of kids knows that quick eating is to your advantage. If you want a chance at seconds, you better be quick! In this study, they discovered that quick eating was significantly associated with being overweight. It makes complete sense! Eating quickly doesn’t give your body enough time to know it’s full. So you’re right back at the buffet before your body even has a chance to park you on the couch with your pants unbuttoned.
In the study, skipping breakfast was not independently associated with being overweight. So on it's own, it has no effect, at least that's the case in this study. But I will tell you from personal experience that skipping breakfast does you no favors. Skipping breakfast has been show to lower your metabolic rate. That’s the thing that helps you burn calories all day long. And a lower metabolic rate is not ideal for someone looking to lose a few pounds.
Late Night Meals
The argument over late night eating has gone on and will continue to go on for ages. In the study, just like skipping breakfast, late night eating was shown to NOT be associated with overweightness when done independently of other eating behaviors. And I’m here to say that from experience with many clients over the years, people don’t make the best food choices past 9pm. Think about it. Are you and your buddies going out for carrots and low fat ranch at 2 in the morning? NOPE!! You’re headed to Taco Bell for the late night munchies.
Combination of All Three
Even though our last two did not influence overweightness independently, you better believe that the holy trifecta of quick eating, skipping breakfast, and late night meals will set you back quite a bit in your health goals! The study did show that those three in combination furthered the impact of being overweight. So why not play it safe, stay away FAR AWAY from all three of these behaviors and do your body some good. Or attack one at a time until they become something you do every once in a while, instead of your daily routine!
Study By: Jung Su Lee et al. Eating Behaviors, January 2016