Perhaps you've hit the snooze button a few too many times. We've all done it. Maybe you've got an incredibly busy work day and things just seem to continuously pile up, no matter how fast or hard you work. Again, we've all been there. No matter what it is that is causing you to be rushed or super busy, you may be, unwittingly, developing a habit that can contribute to weight gain!
That's right, you may be sabotaging yourself!
Skipping a sit down meal in favour of grabbing something quick and easy while on the go is a very popular choice, but not a particularly healthy one.
A study published in the Journal of Health Psychology
found that eating on the run could be undoing all of your healthy habits.
Researchers at the University of Surrey found that dieters who ate while walking around or moving were more likely to overdo it during that meal.
They ate more than people do when engaged in other activities that lead to mindless eating like watching tv, for example. They also found those 'on the go' eaters were more likely to overdo it later on as well.
"Hunger and fullness are far more than just biological processes, and not only relate to the calories consumed, but also to whether a person is aware of what they are eating," explains Jane Ogden, Ph.D., professor of psychology. "When we eat mindlessly and are distracted from the food we are eating, our body doesn't get to code the food as having been eaten."
So why exactly does eating on the go have a more detrimental effect than eating while seated?
"I think eating on the go may cause more overeating than watching TV not only because it is a powerful form of distraction but it's also a form of exercise," says Ogden. "People may then overcompensate for this exercise and feel that they are legitimately allowed to eat more."
We know it can be tough to slow yourself down long enough to schedule a sit down meal, but Dr. Ogden insists it is easier than you think.
"This doesn't need to take much time," says Ogden. "Stopping what you are doing and practicing the conscious process of thinking 'now I am having something to eat' should be enough." She says just taking even a few minutes to sit will allow your brain to recognize you are eating a real meal.
Put the work away for a few minutes and think about your food!
Are you guilty? How can you shuffle things to make sure you have time to sit down and eat?