Health Confession: Do You Inhale Your Lunch?

By Lauren Gelman from original

Woman Eating Lunch at Desk© iStockphoto/Thinkstock
Yesterday, I managed to scarf down my lunch—a very delicious hummus and veggie sandwich from Cosi—in about 3.5 minutes. I was chewing so fast, I had to catch my breath afterward! Granted, it was an unusually packed day, but I find myself crossing off lunch like it’s a line item on my To Do list more often than not.

And according to this new Lithuanian research, I really need to stop and savor my meals. The researchers learned that speed eaters were 2.5 times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than people who ate more slowly. Other research has also linked eating fast with obesity. And proponents of mindful eating say that savoring each bite helps connect us to a sense of nourishment and well being.

Old habits die hard, but this Slate.com essay about embracing the French way of lunching—that is, taking at least a 30-minute lunch break away from your desk, and preferably outside—is inspiring me to make a change. Surely, I can manage to take a break one or two times a week—and author Rachael Levy says it will improve how I do my job:

“The lunch break is a chance to refresh the mind and socialize with friends and co-workers. You’ve already been in class or work all morning, and you’re about to do it again all afternoon. By taking those few moments to breathe, you come out feeling refreshed and invigorated. At work, time spent chatting with colleagues can lead to great ideas and cross-pollination between departments. And if you’ve broken bread with colleagues at lunch, it’s going to be easier to approach them in the professional sphere.”

So, RD colleagues, who’s joining me for some al fresco sandwich eating tomorrow?

And don’t miss these 15 simple tricks to eat less and feel more full.