Many studies have shown the link between watching television and gaining weight, but recent research has shown that the amount we eat and snack on can change depending on what we are watching.
Interestingly, the more distracting a film is and the more engrossed we are in it the more food we manage to eat. This was especially true for action movies where people in the study ate 65 per cent more calories than when watching a romance film. Interestingly this effect was seen more in men than women.
It is most important to tackle this mindless munching on snack foods, so during mealtimes make sure to turn off the television, make time for your meal, and think about what you are eating. That way you slow down, actually taste your food, and also learn to ‘hear’ your body say that you are full and satisfied, rather than shovelling everything into your mouth, barely tasting your meal. It will also help to curb weight gain and might rekindle your love of food.
So Terminator those snacks, and don’t let the TV be a Lethal Weapon to your diet, make sure you have Total Recall of all you have eaten, remember You Only Live Twice if you are James Bond, so give those snacks the Bullitt. Put more simply – ditch those movie snacks, and if you really must have them, cut up some fruit and chomp on that.
Cara Cunningham, community dietitian