Time is always of the essence in today’s society. The constant strain of time could be working against us when it comes to our calorie intake. When I ran across this principle, it caught my attention by promising that you could essentially eat whatever you wanted without feeling deprived and counting every calories.
The name is derived from a study of people given pistachios. One group was given shelled pistachios, while the other just the nut. Each group was then allowed to eat till they were full. The group that had to remove the shell ate 50% less calories then the other, even though they were both allowed to eat till they were satisfied.
The idea behind the study proves that people consume less calories when forced to eat at a slower rate. The shell, in this case, acts as a distraction to keep people from consuming the calories at as fast pace. Of course, this principle can be applied to everyday life. Since the mind takes 20 minutes to process a full feeling; forcing yourself to eat at a slower rate will help you control what you eat and how much.
I remember my aunt telling me that when she was really thin, she ate all her food with chop sticks to keep her from eating too fast. Brilliant idea really; however over time she got really good at using them and it didn’t work anymore. Here are some other tips that you can use to control the pace….
How you might put the Pistachio Principle to the test:
- Instead of drinking juices, where calories are quickly consumed, eat fresh fruit instead–a whole orange or tangerine, for example, eaten slowly and section-by-section after peeling it, takes longer to consume and has fiber you don’t find in the juice.
- If you have a hankering for peanuts, go with shelled vs. unshelled.
- Try cutting up fresh fruits and veggies into much smaller pieces than you normally would and see how slowly you can eat them (source).
This principle makes a lot of sense. However, I don’t think you should sit down with a gallon of ice cream and “slowly” eat until you are full. Use this principle with healthy foods and pay close attention to the rate at which you consume your food for best results!