If you’re stressed, in a hurry, or both, it’s easy to inhale your food. And a lot of people do eat quickly…in the car, on the way out the door, at the office. Or maybe mealtime at home always feels like a mad dash. Sound familiar?
What you eat certainly makes a difference when it comes to your health. But a recent study found that how you eat may also affect the way your body responds to food.1
In the study, researchers found that eating fast may be linked to an increased risk for diabetes. Your mom was right…chew your food.
In the U.S. about 37 million people have type 2 diabetes. And another 96 million people have prediabetes.2 Left unchecked, diabetes can lead to:
- Poor circulation
- Kidney failure
- Heart disease
- Early death
Is there anything you can do to prevent diabetes?
There’s some simple things you can do that can prevent or control type 2 diabetes, if you’re consistent:
- Eat a healthy diet (mainly plant-based foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds, healthy fats, and legumes).
- Maintain a healthy weight or lose weight if you need to.
- Get regular exercise (even 20 to 30 minutes of walking makes a difference).
- Avoid fad diets and junk foods (like soda, sugary sweets, and foods make from refined carbohydrates)
And there’s at least one more thing you can do to help prevent type 2 diabetes…
Slow down at meal time.
- Time it. Set a timer or stopwatch for 20 minutes. Use all the time to eat a normal-sized meal.
Chew your food. Take small bites and chew slowly.
- Be quiet. Eat silently for the first five minutes. Think about your food, what it looks like, how it tastes, and what it took to produce.
- Slow down your eating. Try using your nondominant hand to hold your fork. Put your fork down when you chew. Or try using chopsticks
1. Gudi, S.K, et al. (2020). Eating speed and the risk of type 2 diabetes: explorations based on real-world evidence. Annals of Pediatric Endocrinology & Metabolism, 25(2): 80-83. From: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7336266/
2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022). The facts, stats, and impacts of diabetes. From: https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/library/spotlights/diabetes-facts-stats.html
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