mindless eating http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/8072/all en-US I Won't Eat or Spend While Standing Up http://www.wisebread.com/i-wont-eat-or-spend-while-standing-up <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/i-wont-eat-or-spend-while-standing-up" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/lincoln-sitting-in-thought.png" alt="lincoln sitting down thinking" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="250" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>From a $1.49 bag of Lays of potato chips, I found a valuable lesson in personal finance and dieting. And that junk-food tutorial will dramatically change the way I shop and spend money. Here's what happened. When I cleared chips from the dining room table, I absentmindedly stuck my hand into the bag and crammed a handful of chips into my mouth.</p> <p>But I wasn't hungry. But I was eating. But I wasn't thinking. But I was eating. Finally, my brain kicked out of the standby mode and I suddenly understood the 10 <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-putting-on-recession-pounds">commandments of dieting</a>, including the prohibition about eating while standing. In the upright position, it's incredibly easy to mindlessly consume calories.</p> <p>That's why dieting gurus always warn about eating while standing up. It's so easy to stuff my mouth with food without thinking. But when I sit at the dinner table or the breakfast counter, I'm more mindful of the process and I consume less.</p> <p>That realization made me think about spending: In the grocery store, in the mall and in the clothing store, I'm usually standing when I make a purchase. But I now believe that if I sat down and thought about the merchandise in my cart, maybe I would spend less. Many stores--even grocery stores--have areas where I can sit, chill and rest.</p> <p>The health food store has a juice bar/cafe area; my neighborhood Target has a Starbucks corner and the grocery store near my home has park benches in front and even a little eatery inside. Buying a small cup of coffee could save me a fortune if while sitting, I carefully edit my shopping cart.</p> <p>Think about it: When we make big purchases or large financial commitments -- a car, a home, college tuition -- at some point in that process, we actually have to sit down to sign papers or to test drive the car or to review documents.</p> <p>From that seated position, we have additional opportunities to consider our options and make thoughtful choices. During those moments, we negotiate with the sellers and with ourselves: Do I really want this merchandise? Do I really need it?</p> <p>But in the mall and in most stores, we're often upright and on automatic pilot. And from that position, we leave a large trail of small coins and crumbs. We leak money without really thinking. So I'm not going to a) eat while standing and b) make a purchase without sitting down to think.</p> <p>Of course, I will still eat potato chips, just smaller portions at the table.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Frugal-Duchess-Live-Well-Money/dp/1934508004"><img align="right" alt="" src="../../../../../../files/fruganomics/u4/frugal-duchess.jpg" /></a>Editor's note: Sharon&nbsp;Harvey Rosenberg (The Frugal Duchess) will be joining Wise Bread as a full time blogger in August. In the mean time, she'll be dropping by with a few guest posts a week.&nbsp; You can find more great tips from Sharon in her book <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Frugal-Duchess-Live-Well-Money/dp/1934508004/ref=pd_rhf_p_t_2">Frugal Duchess: How to Live Well and Save Money</a> or in Wise Bread's new book <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&amp;location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FWays-Live-Large-Small-Budget%2Fdp%2F160239704X%3Fie%3DUTF8%26s%3Dbooks%26qid%3D1243858908%26sr%3D8-1&amp;tag=thelesmac-20&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325">10,001 Ways to Live Large on a Small Budget</a>.</p> <p>Can't wait until August? Here are other great posts by Sharon on her blog <a href="http://sharonhr.blogspot.com/">The Frugal Duchess</a><em>. Enjoy!</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="http://sharonhr.blogspot.com/2008/06/selling-car-jewelry-other-stuff-to.html">Selling the Car, Jewelry &amp; Other Stuff to Raise Cash</a></li> </ul> <ul> <li><a href="http://sharonhr.blogspot.com/2008/03/sell-coach-bag-what-im-willing-to-give.html">Sell the Coach Bag? What I'm Willing To Give Up for Financial Security</a></li> </ul> <ul> <li><a href="http://sharonhr.blogspot.com/2008/02/shocking-results-from-my-free-energy.html">Shocking Results from My Free Energy Audit</a></li> </ul> <ul> <li><a href="http://sharonhr.blogspot.com/2008/04/should-we-house-hunt-nah-plus-tips-for.html">Tips for Preparing for Home Ownership</a></li> </ul> <ul> <li><a href="http://sharonhr.blogspot.com/2008/08/how-to-save-money-on-hair-coloring.html">How to Save Money on Hair Coloring (Sorry Jamie Lee!!)</a></li> </ul> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/frugal-duchess">Frugal Duchess</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/i-wont-eat-or-spend-while-standing-up">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/eat-less-sugar-with-these-10-simple-tricks">Eat Less Sugar With These 10 Simple Tricks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-how-to-lose-weight-without-counting-calories">My 2016 Budget Challenge: How to Lose Weight Without Counting Calories</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/optical-illusions-that-make-you-fatter-and-your-wallet-lighter">Optical Illusions That Make You Fatter and Your Wallet Lighter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/anyone-can-spend-less-for-food">Anyone Can Spend Less for Food</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-sign-up-for-that-store-credit-card">Should You Sign Up for That Store Credit Card?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping dieting eating mindless eating sitting standing Sat, 11 Jul 2009 23:00:03 +0000 Frugal Duchess 3353 at http://www.wisebread.com Optical Illusions That Make You Fatter and Your Wallet Lighter http://www.wisebread.com/optical-illusions-that-make-you-fatter-and-your-wallet-lighter <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/optical-illusions-that-make-you-fatter-and-your-wallet-lighter" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/599988_63372292.jpg" alt="man and giant plate" title="man and giant plate" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>One of my best friends, a long time ago, told me that the key to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-portion-control-to-lose-weight" title="How to Use Portion Control to Lose Weight">food portion sizes</a> was this: &quot;Eat from small plates, drink from taller glasses.&quot; It's a piece of advice I had forgotten, especially after moving to the U.S. where portion sizes seem to have gone from the sublime to the ridiculous. But in a book I'm currently reading called &quot;Mindless Eating&quot; this advice about container sizes is validated by Dr. Brian Wansink, Ph.D, a man who clearly knows his stuff. And optical illusions are at the root of it all. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-psychology-of-salaries-do-you-want-to-know-how-much-your-coworkers-make" title="The Psychology of Salaries: Do You Want to Know How Much Your Coworkers Make?">The Psychology of Salaries: Do You Want to Know How Much Your Coworkers Make?</a>)</p> <p>I think back to my childhood, to one of the first really cool tricks I was shown by a teacher. A physics teacher actually, but it could have been a math teacher or a chemist. Anyway, the illusion is shown below, crudely illustrated by myself.</p> <p><strong>Take a look at Lincoln's Stovepipe hat. Is it longer than it is wide?</strong></p> <p><img width="195" height="195" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u17/tophatillusion_copy.jpg" alt="top hat" title="top hat" /></p> <p>As you already know this is an optical illusion, then you already know the answer is a trick. The width and the height are identical. Now, replace that top hat with two glasses, one a tall thin glass and one short and fat. Here we have the issue of serving sizes when it comes to anything from juice to alcohol.</p> <p>Even seasoned bar staff have way more trouble pouring an accurate drink into a short glass than they do a tall one. Usually, they pour more into the short, fat glass. And this is a big problem when trying to pour yourself one serving of orange juice, milk or anything else. If you use the short glass you are always going to overpour, leading to larger portions, weight gain and, of course, less time between grocery trips. Now consider the next optical illusion.</p> <p><strong>Which white circle is larger? The left or the right?</strong></p> <p><img width="399" height="211" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u17/circles.jpg" alt="circles" title="circles" /></p> <p>Once again, it's all just a matter of perception. The circles are in fact identical in size. BUT, they look different due to their surroundings. The circle on the right is dwarfed by the large black circles, the one on the left overpowers them.</p> <p>This, when applied to food and plate sizes, is perhaps the most important change you can make to you home life. Serve your food on beautiful large plates and you will naturally serve yourself more of everything. Our animal brain wants to fill the plate, and we were always told to finish what was on our plates as children. But on a smaller plate, less food will fill it. Here's a quick example.</p> <p><img width="400" height="231" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u17/plates.jpg" alt="plates" title="plates" /></p> <p>Both food portions are identical in size. In studies Dr. Wansink performed, people ate what was in front of them and if it looked like more, they felt more full. In fact, one study involved a burger that was simply flattened out and placed inside a larger bun. Because it looked like a larger burger, the people in the study felt more satisfied.</p> <p>Now, if you are using the larger plates at home, chances are you're over-serving yourself on a nightly basis. That again means more calories per meal and more food to buy more often. It's not good for you, it's certainly not good for your wallet. And it can all be avoided by simply getting smaller plates (which to be honest are harder to find, but worth the effort. Dinner plates have significantly increased in size since the 1950's, no doubt to accommodate our growing demand for more food).</p> <p><strong>There's an old saying in cuisine...&quot;the first bite is with the eye.&quot;</strong></p> <p>I believe this to be true on many levels, and not just one of taste perception. If we see a bigger meal, we'll feel more full. If we see a big plate with a small amount of food, we're already thinking &quot;hmmm, that's not going to be enough.&quot; It's also worth noting that these days, time plays a big factor in our eating habits. Like the French, we all need to slow down and enjoy our food. Take longer, smaller mouthfuls. And above all, we need to let our bodies tell us when we are full, not signals like an empty plate or glass.</p> <p>As a Wise Bread reader, you're already smart about where you shop for your food. You also need to be smart about how you eat it. Smaller portions are better for your waistline and your wallet. Don't get fooled by optical illusions.</p> <p><img align="left" width="240" height="240" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u17/51TFRGSOMjL__AA240_.jpg" alt="Mindless Eating" title="Mindless Eating" /></p> <p><em>You can find a copy of Dr. Wansink's excellent book at Amazon (grab the paperback, it's cheaper.) I haven't even scratched the surface of the stories he tells about our mindless eating habits. An eye-opening read and well worth your time.</em></p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0553384481?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=wisebread07-20&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=0553384481">Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think</a><img width="1" height="1" alt="" src="http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=wisebread07-20&amp;l=as2&amp;o=1&amp;a=0553384481" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/optical-illusions-that-make-you-fatter-and-your-wallet-lighter">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/concession-stand-treats-a-license-to-print-money">Concession stand treats – a license to print money.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ugggh-hic-i-justss-gotta-eat-somehicthing-my-top-10-homemade-drunk-snacks">Ugggh, (hic) I justss gotta eat some(hic)thing; my top 10 homemade drunk snacks.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-sleek-marketing-ploys-aimed-at-getting-more-of-your-grocery-money">5 Sleek Marketing Ploys Aimed at Getting More of Your Grocery Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/anyone-can-spend-less-for-food">Anyone Can Spend Less for Food</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-most-unhealthiest-restaurants">10 Unhealthiest Restaurants</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Consumer Affairs Food and Drink container diet eating Food glass illusion mindless eating plate Mon, 29 Oct 2007 18:02:06 +0000 Paul Michael 1332 at http://www.wisebread.com