Diabetes and Weight Loss: What’s On Your Kitchen Counter?

If you have diabetes and the doctor has recommended losing weight, consider what is sitting on your kitchen counter.

To find out if weight has anything to do with the food sitting on kitchen counters, 240 kitchens in the U.S. were photographed by Cornell University researchers, and the women of each house were weighed.

Countering Calories

The study revealed that women who kept soft drinks (any type) sitting out on their counters weighed 24 to 26 more pounds than those who kept the drinks out of sight. In homes where breakfast cereal was left sitting out anywhere in the kitchen, women weighed about 20 pounds more. A bag of cookies left out in the open translated into eight extra pounds.

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Those who had a bowl of fruit on the kitchen counter weighed an average of 13 pounds less.

Lead researcher, Brian Wansink, Ph.D., points out the study findings are correlational - certain foods sitting on the kitchen counter or table is consistent with weight gain - and adds that if people want to be thinner it makes sense to do what thin people do.

“If skinny people make their homes ‘Slim by Design’ by clearing the counters of everything but the fruit bowl, it won’t hurt us to do the same.” says Wansink.

Coaxing Habit Change

Beside storing cookies, chips, candy, soft drinks, nuts, and cereals in cupboards and pantries, Wansink offers other simple ways for you and your family to cut calories, and prevent unwanted weight gain:

  • Keep candy in covered, opaque containers instead of a typical open-top, glass candy dish.
  • Eliminate the cookie bowl or jar from the kitchen counter, or fridge top.
  • Put TV room snacks on a table at least six feet away from where you or others sit.
  • Place a fruit bowl within three-feet of the most traveled kitchen pathway.
  • Do not serve dinner entrees and starchy foods family style. Instead, pre-plate these items, giving each person a healthy sized portion.
  • Serve vegetables and salads family style.

“Habit is habit and not to be flung out of the window by any man, but coaxed downstairs a step at a time.” ~ Mark Twain

Source: FoodPsychology; Slim by Design/Brian Wansink

Photo credit: designbuildinhabit

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