Scientists Reveal Dangers of Eating Fast


Life in our modern age can be rather hectic,
and sometimes you have no choice but to grab a meal on the go. Other times all you want to do is shove food
down your face hole as fast as possible so you can move on. Even our entertainment demands that we eat
fast, like to that next match of Fortnite because your team is waiting on you and they’re
getting pretty sick of you being afk. As problems with digestive health and obesity
become more prevalent, it’s clear that our fast-paced food consumption is creating serious
problems for us, problems that might just be fixed by us eating slower. In global obesity rankings, Spain sits at
number 62, with 23.8% of the population being obese versus the United States, where it’s
36.2% of the population. While there are a variety of factors to explain
this difference, it appears to be that Spain’s eating culture is a leading cause for this
disparity between the two modern and industrialized nations. In Spain the typical meal can take at least
an hour, and is seen as a social affair to be enjoyed with coworkers and family- yes,
even midday lunches can run for a full hour, if not more. Family dinners tend to be late in the day
and can last as long as two hours, especially when they involve large gatherings of family
members or friends as they often do. Spain’s social eating culture drags out the
process of eating in comparison with the United States, where the average meal is scarfed
down as quickly as possible. In 2011 the Organization for Economic Cooperation
and Development, a group of thirty four mostly western countries, did a study on the eating
habits of their member states and the domestic lives of their populations. The study found that Americans spend far less
time eating than any other nation, with just one hour and fourteen minutes a day dedicated
to the task of shoveling food into our mouths versus the average of one hour and forty one
minutes for the rest. But how big of a deal is it that other nations
eat far slower than us? And just why should we learn to pace ourselves
with our food? Does it really matter? Well, as it turns out, yes! And the benefits are many. The main reason for eating slowly has to do
with our body’s basic biological functions. Your brain is an incredible organ capable
of lightning-fast calculations, yet strangely we evolved so that a signal from your stomach
to your brain saying, “hey I’m pretty full up on food here,” takes on average a whopping
twenty minutes. That’s a grand distance of about two and a
half feet for most people, and that’s a pretty infuriating thought for people struggling
with weight gain when you consider that neurons transmit signals at a speed of .5 milliseconds. For the record, it takes you between three
hundred and four hundred milliseconds to blink an eye. Your brain is basically The Flash, sending
and receiving signals from every part of your body at blazing speeds- but when it comes
to the double cheeseburger with an extra order of fries you just scarfed down because you
felt like you were starving, your brain turns into a sloth on a bicycle with a flat tire. But if you eat slow enough that your tortoise
brain has a chance to recognize it, you’ll soon feel like you’re no longer starving
and will probably stop throwing those fistfuls of french fries fried in pure trans fats down
your gullet. Feeling full will prevent you from overeating,
which directly leads to slowing down or halting weight gain from unnecessary calories. Yet as annoying as this little brain hack
is in our modern lives, it’s in fact a life saver from back in the days before civilization
and the all important fast food restaurant were on every corner. Before civilization and all its modern and
delicious fast food conveniences, we didn’t always know where our next meal was coming
from. Therefore stuffing ourselves to the point
of literal bursting became an evolutionary prerogative, because back then it was good
to be fat, as fat could be burned during times when food was scarce which was something like
ninety nine percent of the time because it really sucked to be alive back then. Thus it’s likely we evolved with such a slow
stomach trigger so that we were able to overeat and ensure that we would pack away precious
pounds of fat for when food resources became scarce. What likely saved the lives of your ancestors
is now helping add unnecessary and unwanted pounds to your waistline, because even though
technology has made us masters of most of our world, nature still has its ways of letting
you know that it hates you. Deeply. Eating slowly can do more than just benefit
your health though, it also helps with food satisfaction. When we researched for this episode we found
a lot of feel-good new age’y mumbo jumbo about food satisfaction making your soul feel good,
or ‘connecting you to your food and thus enhancing nutrition’. That’s not how science works, so we mostly
disregarded it all- but it turns out there’s one really good reason to worry about food
satisfaction. That has to do with laboratory developed,
processed foods, which are made to taste especially good when eaten quickly because when eaten
slowly you start to notice that the flavors really just don’t hold up. This makes sense when you think about it. Certain processed foods are a hodge podge
of dozens of different elements all trying to blend together to create nice flavors,
and the slower you eat them the more that careful blend falls apart in your mouth and
starts to taste like, well, like a hodge podge of dozens of different elements. Many natural foods though like fruits maintain
their flavor for far longer, even when eaten slowly. This might not seem like a big deal, until
you start to think about the fact that if you develop a habit to eat slower, you’re
naturally going to start avoiding foods that taste terrible when eaten slowly and which
also happen to be the same ones that are terrible for your health. Eating slower will prompt you towards more
natural, healthier foods and away from highly processed things like flavored potato chips
or candy bars- and all the sugar, fat, and calories that come along with them. We hear you though, we were skeptical too,
which is why we have a mini challenge for you. Next time you’re at a gas station, go ahead
and buy yourself a pack of those wrapped-up chocolate donuts, the small ones. Then pop one in your mouth and go ahead and
chew it for about ten seconds and tell us how you feel. Unless you have the taste buds of a goat you’re
going to start feeling pretty gross after about the fifth second. So you see now why many snacks like this are
purposefully small. They trick you into eating more, and thus
buying more, but also into eating them quickly. You can even try it with a twinkie, which
even we admit at first glance seems to be one of mankind’s finest creations. But pop one of those into your mouth for a
good ten seconds and see how you feel about yourself afterwards. So just eat slower and you’ll naturally want
to eat healthier foods. It makes a lot of basic sense. Eating slowly also has a direct benefit on
your digestion. Now, we realize that most of our audience
is younger and the idea of improving your digestion is laughable and a 100% non-concern. Oh boy, we literally can’t wait for you to
get into your thirties, we have such terrible, horrible wonders to show you. You might have a bulletproof gut right now,
but believe us that’s not going to last. You’re getting older every day, the grains
of life slowly but inexorably slipping through your fingers and ushering you ever-forward
to your inevitable death- and bad digestion. So you should really start building good habits
now or you’ll spend a significant amount of your limited time on this earth squatting
over the toilet. When you sit down for a meal your body starts
going into digestion mode almost immediately. First your mouth starts salivating so that
enzymes in your saliva can break food down and moisten it, which makes it easier to slide
that barbecue bacon cheeseburger down your throat. Our stomach gets the signal that food is incoming
and starts to secrete more stomach acids to help further break food down and push it through
into the intestines. For its part, the small intestine starts prepping
itself for peristalsis, or the muscle contractions that help push food along. When you sit down and rush a meal, you’re
basically throwing food into a digestive system that isn’t quite ready to deal with it yet. Fast, large bites means that food is inadequately
chewed, which is actually a pretty big deal because it makes it more difficult for that
food to be turned into chyme- the liquid mix of digested food, hydrochloric acid, digestive
enzymes and water. When your stomach doesn’t have time to properly
digest food it can lead to constipation, acid reflux, and spontaneous combustion from the
build up of gasses. We made one of those up, but we’re not telling
you which, because we care about you and want you to be healthier- even if it’s through
sheer terror. If you’re still skeptical about the benefits
of eating slowly, consider a University of Rhode Island study where researchers served
lunch on two different occasions to thirty normal-weight women. The meal in both cases was a huge plate of
pasta with sauce and parmesan cheese, along with a glass of water. At each meal the researchers asked the women
to eat to the point of comfortable fullness, but on the first visit they were told to eat
as quickly as possible, while on the second they were asked to eat slowly and put down
their utensils between bites. The difference between eating fast and slowly
came out to 646 calories in 9 minutes versus 579 calories in 29 minutes, or 67 calories. Spread that out across three meals and that
adds up to a significant amount of extra calories per day making you gain weight. Also, the women who ate quickly reported feeling
hungrier an hour later than those who ate slowly, so not only are you consuming more
calories, but you’re creating a greater temptation to add extra calories from snacks and junk
food. So how can you change your current eating
habits and start to eat slower, and healthier? As usual, we’ve got your back. Be social. Making your meal a social experience can help
extend the amount of time it takes to actually eat that meal. Friendly conversation helps keep food out
of your mouth provided you don’t talk while you chew which we could do an entire other
video about. 2. Change your eating environment. Instead of scarfing down pizza in front of
your computer, sit down at the dining room table like a real human being. Something as simple as changing your environment
can make you more mindful of the food you’re eating, and help you eat slower. 3. Count your chews. As you chew, count the number of times your
mouth goes up and down, which we admit sounds super annoying but research shows it can help
lose weight by increasing the calories the body burns during digestion. 4. Drink water between bites. Not only does it physically slow you down,
but it helps you feel fuller faster, which will limit the amount of food you ultimately
eat. 5. Move to North Korea. Eating food in North Korea is illegal so you
won’t even have to worry about eating slower. Now that you’ve learned all about how eating
slower can be a huge health benefit, do you think you’ll be more mindful about the way
you eat? Also, make sure you check out our other video,
this is why you’re fat!! And as always if you enjoyed this video don’t
forget to Like, Share, and Subscribe for more great content!

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