Have you ever felt that you were literally beckoned by a bag of Cool Ranch Doritos to buy them? Or if after eating a salad for lunch (dressing on the side, of course) do you reach for a Snickers at 3 p.m. because you were “so healthy” just a few hours ago?
You’re not alone. In fact, most Americans engage in some sort of mindless eating, each meal, every snack, each day.
Author and food psychologist, Brian Wansink Ph.D. talks about how blurry our perception has become in choosing what we eat, how much we eat and when we eat. In his book, Mindless Eating, Wansink helps undue a bit of the guilt that ensues after eating too much.
He helps you dig a bit deeper into the psychology of eating so that you can have a more firm understanding of why deep-dish pizza with extra cheese and mushrooms is your favorite comfort food, or why your Kellogg’s strawberry-frosted Pop-Tarts taste better than the generic brand even though the ingredients are identical.
Mindless Eating also unveils fascinating evidence on the food marketing industry. For instance, Wansink openly discusses how food suppliers package and process foods just so that we’ll eat them and eat more and more of them. He also talks about what colors inspire us to eat, which colors promote satiety and how certain movies enable us to eat the WHOLE tub of popcorn, even the unpopped kernels.
What Mindless Eating openly breaks down the psychological effects of eating from our own personal relationship to food and portion size to the food industry’s manipulation of our food senses. While this book is not a set-in-stone diet plan, Wansink does help you overcome food pitfalls such as avoiding Diet Danger Zones that trigger a food binge and shows you how to erase 100-200 calories from your daily intake without feeling deprived.
The more we understand that our food behaviors and our health are not held in a vacuum, the more we can become better armed to make more mindful and wiser eating choices that will result in a happier and healthier self. If you’re at all interested in learning more about the dynamics of eating, Mindless Eating will not disappoint.