Walk-to-burn-calorie menu diet aid

People will eat less when they know how much exercise is required to burn off the calories they are consuming. This is according to new research from Texas Christian University, which revealed individuals refrain from eating as much when menus display this type of information.

It was shown that diners using such menus tend to order meals that are lower in calorie count. This suggests people are more likely to take seriously a warning telling them it will take two hours of brisk walking to burn off a cheeseburger than they are of simple calorie information.

Led by Dr Meena Shah and Ashlei James, the study looked at the eating choices made by 300 volunteers aged 18 to 30.

It was demonstrated that those informed about how much exercise would be required to work off the calories of their meal consumed an average of 100 fewer calories than other participants.

Dr Shah said the research is the first "to look at the effects of displaying minutes of brisk walking needed to burn food calories on the calories ordered and consumed. This study suggests there are benefits."

Chartered Psychologist and author of 'FAT to fantastic' Denise Taylor said:

"It’s hard to lose weight and whilst people know what to do - eat less unhealthy foods, exercise more, we don’t always do what we know. Eating out is always more challenging than eating at home and we face temptation to choose the high fat/sugar options.  What does 650 calories mean?  We know we can eat 2,000 calories a day as a woman so of course we can eat the 1,000 calorie bag of chocolates at the cinema.  We aren’t thinking about what else we eat that day. I personally like this research and think that knowing that we need to walk for 2 hours to walk off a meal, or 90 minutes for a bar of chocolate gives more context. Knowing an hour in the gym still won’t burn off the slice of cake makes the choice more real."

 

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