Food Cravings – if you think about it – can you reduce the desire?
For some people, the mere mention of the word ‘chocolate’ will evoke immediate cravings which send them running to the nearest corner shop.
In a recent paper published by Science, scientists suggest that imagining consumption of foods can reduce actual consumption. In their experiments Dr. Morewedge and colleagues asked volunteers to imagine eating either 3 or 30 units of a food – for example chocolates. The volunteers were asked to perform the mental imagery for the whole process of eating these chocolates repetitively – chewing, swallowing etc. Other participants were asked to imagine simply moving the chocolates into a bowl or another task unrelated to eating food. All participants were then provided with a bowl of the chocolates under the guise that they were doing a taste test. Unbeknown to the participants the researchers subsequently measured the amount of chocolate eaten by the different groups. The results revealed those people who had imagined consuming more chocolates were more likely to actually eat less chocolate in real life.
So perhaps in future suppressing thoughts of chocolate might not be as successful as repeatedly imagining its consumption to reduce the desire. This brings new meaning to the saying ‘food for thought’.
By: Deb Shaw