The See Food Diet

© Pilarin | Stock Free Images & Dreamstime Stock Photos

Have you heard about the See Food Diet? As it’s not a weight loss regime, chances are you may not have heard of it.  In fact, it’s one that can easily sabotage waist management efforts over time. And even though, you may not initially seem to be familiar with it, it’s a pretty good bet that you have some sort of experience with it.

The See Food Diet is quite straightforward: You spy something to eat and while you may not be hungry, you pop the item into your mouth. The selections are usually pretty small – a few nuts from a bowl or a candy from a dish out on the table or on your desk at work. Or it could be at the front of the refrigerator as you open the door to get something.

In any case, over time you can end up with hundreds of calories a month and thousands over a year consumed simply on the impluse.

Watch this video by Brian Wansink, of  Cornell University and  author of  the book Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think.  In it, he talks about the simple placement of a candy bowl. He has carried  out hundreds of other studies on eating behavior which demonstrate just how much food can be consumed in a mindless manner.

I was reminded of my food environment this week on Yom Kippur, which a fast day for Jews. As I walked through my kitchen, I saw just how many items over the past while had made their way onto my counters without my realization. And since I was fasting, it seemed as though they were all calling me to eat them.

Every once in a while it’s a good idea to clean up your food environment – whether after some holidays or celebrations, as in my case, or just because it’s where you may usually keep certain food items. Put away nibbles like nuts, dried fruit or candies so that you don’t suddenly want a  bit when you walk by tables or counters. Move tempting treats away front the front of cupboards and the refrigerator.

Take a look around. What do you see that you should change? Please share your experiences in the comments section.

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Categories: Tips and Tricks

Author:Rosie Schwartz

Rosie Schwartz is a Toronto-based consulting dietitian and writer.

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