Well, here’s a new weight loss tip: chew your food. Really. According to a new study from Harbin Medical University in China, published in the July 2011 American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, people who chew their food 40 times instead of the average 15 consumed 12% fewer calories.
You might assume they ate less because all that jaw exercise wore them out and they gave up the effort. Actually, the study found that longer chewing produced lower levels of ghrelin. We’ve heard of ghrelin before.That’s the hormone that tells your autopilot that you are still hungry — so keep eating. They also found the heavy duty chewers had more of the hormones that send the “Enough already!” message to the brain. Click here to read about hunger/satiety hormones.
How much difference can a 12% reduction in calories make? Theoretically about 25 lbs. in a year. Of course, if you have soup, ice cream, and other slurpable food, that will bring the numbers down some.
I’m sorry, folks, but if you have a serious weight problem, you will need to do something besides chew. Eating a low glycemic diet and adding more steps to your daily exercise will make a much more reliable contribution to your weight loss goal.
But, it doesn’t hurt to chew your food!