The Kitchen: The Heart of the Home or Your Weight-Loss Enemy?

kitchenIf you are you struggling to control your weight, it could be that your kitchen is to blame. Although your kitchen is the heart of the home, it’s also at the very heart of what you eat and how much food you consume – everything from the size of your plates to the wattage of your light bulbs has a direct effect on the amount of food you consume. And one new study has shown that we are three times more likely to eat the first item that we see than the fifth, so if a healthy salad is at the back of the fridge, we’re three times less likely to eat it than if a fatty pie is the first thing we see.

Your Kitchen Cupboards

The research stated that there was a really strong tendency towards eating food that was most visible. If your least healthy food is at the front of the refrigerator or cupboard, that’s the food you’re most likely to eat. The research also found that if you have more than one of an item, such as soup, you’re more likely to eat that item than something that there are less units of.

Having said that, if you know that you’re most likely to eat the first thing you see when you open your kitchen cupboards, be careful to place your healthiest food at the front and your least healthy food at the back – or, fill your cupboards and fridge with nothing but healthy foods and then you won’t have any unhealthy foods to sabotage your diet!

Your Dinner Plates

Most of us have a tendency to eat almost everything on our plates – but since the 1970s, the average dinner plate has grown at least 25% in size, meaning that on average we are consuming 25% more than we were forty years ago. The research also showed that we eat 90% of the food on our plate regardless of how big the plate is – so stick to smaller dinner plates, not platters.

Your Glasses

People serve themselves more soda and more juice when they pour themselves a drink into a short, wide glass when compared to a tall, skinny glass. That’s because we tend to focus on the height of glasses rather than the depth of them, so we’ll drink more calories if we use small glasses when compared to large, taller glasses.

The Colors On Your Walls

Bright colors can over-stimulate us, making us consume food far more quickly. Bright colors can also make us eat more, so in your eating area, try to stick to natural colors or pastel colors as these will have a calming influence, meaning that you eat more slowly so that you can recognize the feelings of being full.

Your Cookie Jar

This rule doesn’t just extend to the cookie jar – it extends to anything in the kitchen that is clear, including treat jars, plastic containers and kitchen cupboards that are made of glass. Anything that you can see clearly without having to search for is more likely to be eaten than something hidden away in a container that isn’t see-through. If you have see-through containers, put them away in an inconvenient spot that you have to bend to or stand on a stool to reach, as having to reach the item will serve as a stop-gap, allowing you to have a few seconds to think about whether you actually want what’s in the container. For see-through kitchen cupboards, stash healthy things towards the front and unhealthy items towards the back so that temptation is out of your direct line of vision.

You Eat in the Kitchen

You should also make sure to serve your food away from the kitchen, as eating where food is prepared and where the sights and smells of the food are the strongest is more likely to make you go back for seconds than if you are away from the kitchen.