As we age, our oral cavities change; this means that some of the habits we used to rely on to process food becomes less reliable. One such habit is chewing food. While it might be comfortable for our teeth to get a break, continuing to chew food once it’s been placed in our mouth could prove counterproductive.
Recently, there has been a lot of speculation about whether or not chewing food slowly can help reduce weight. If you’re looking to shed those extra pounds, then you might want to consider altering your eating habits to include chewing food more slowly.
The Science Behind Chewing
One of the primary reasons why chewing food more slowly might be a healthy choice is because it allows us to better perceive the flavor of food. When we chew food quickly, the taste buds on the tongue are bombarded with a flood of sugar that renders the natural flavor of the food impossible to discern.
Even when we chew food slowly, we can still taste the sugar. However, the way it is processed and broken down by our salivary glands is different. This means that the salt, sour, and sweet flavors are more pronounced. It also means that you could potentially discern the difference between artificial and natural flavors.
Artificial flavors and chemical preservatives are typically masked by the intense sugar spike that occurs when food is chewed quickly. Unmasking these flavors makes it easier for your tongue to tell the difference between natural and artificial foods. While this might not seem like a benefit at first glance, it could actually be a useful tool in maintaining a healthy diet.
Reducing Food Intake While Maintaining Health
Reducing food intake while maintaining health is one of the keys to losing weight. However, keeping food on our tongues for longer allows us to better distinguish flavors and textures. Therefore, we should always make sure our food is prepared properly before placing it in our mouths.
When food is eaten quickly, it’s more likely to be contaminated by the hands or utensils used to prepare it. If possible, it’s best to eat food without utensils. Putting food in our mouths without having first washed our hands could lead to health problems. It also increases the likelihood of food poisoning.
How To Chew Food Properly
To ensure that your body does not become dependent on sugar, you must be careful about exactly how you are able to detect and appreciate food’s flavors. One method is simply to chew your food more slowly. If you continue to chew after each bite, then you will enable your taste buds to better discern the flavor of each morsel you consume.
The act of chewing food more slowly not only allows you to better appreciate flavors but it also helps the digestive system better break down and absorb nutrients from food. For example, protein breaks down more easily when it is chewed slowly than when it is chewed quickly. This is important because it means a foodstuff that is more readily available for use by the body.
Not only does chewing food slowly make it easier for us to get the nutrients we need, it could also make us feel better. The hormone oxytocin is released during and after eating. This hormone promotes social behaviors, trust, and bonding. This could explain why we might feel an affinity for those who chew their food slowly.
So does chewing food slowly help lose weight, or does it simply change how we experience food? The answer may depend on you. Do you want to make healthier dietary choices for yourself? Do you want to lose weight but keep your health? Are you looking for ways to improve your experience with food? If so, then you might want to consider altering your chewing habits to incorporate the benefits of slower eating.