Tasting, smelling, seeing and even feeling your food are all part of a typical dining routine. However, listening to your grub is rarely regarded as vital to the experience.
That all could change as a result of a new study that shows that people eat less when they hear themselves chew.
Researchers at Brigham Young University have dubbed the phenomenon the Crunch Effect and they determined that the more intense the noise, the less people consumed. In fact, it was revealed that even listening to a commercial that featured someone else munching away led people to not opt for that extra bite.
In one experiment, participants who wore headphones that played loud music to mask the sound of food ingested a larger amount (4 pretzels) than those who heard quieter tones (2.75 pretzels).
Interestingly, the noise from snacks in the process of being cooked — such as sizzling bacon — had no effect on the amount people ate.
Ryan Elder, the study’s co-author, explained:
“When you mask the sound of consumption, like when you watch TV while eating, you take away one of those senses and it may cause you to eat more than you would normally.”
So am I telling you that a diet rich in chili cheese Fritos could actually help you lose weight? Yes, that’s exactly what I’m saying… although it would be super unhealthy.
Of course, the bottom line is eating smaller portions and if the Crunch Effect works for you, you’re much better off sticking with meals that have nutritional value.