Mindless Eating is a book a friend at the gym recommended to me as the most influential book about eating and nutrition she had read. I just finished the book and I found it to be a great read that was humourous, enjoyable and full of great tips on how to eat better that any normal person could use. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who would like to learn some new ideas on how to eat better, based Brian Wansink’s research on how people eat more than they think.
I laughed out loud when I read about the bottomless soup bowl experiment. Could you imagine sitting at a table eating out of a soup bowl that was rigged to magically refill as you ate without your knowledge? How much would you eat? For me, it would depend how much I liked the soup. Another experiment was with chicken wings and how much more or less people would eat if the bones from the wings were cleared from the table or not. We can guess that a person might eat fewer chicken wings if they had a way to count how many they ate or chose how many to eat before they are served. The title of the book is Mindless Eating, but what I learned was some new ways to be more aware of how easily the environment surrounding us affects our eating choices.
Mindless Eating comes with a eating plan that is a diet that ‘you don’t even know you’re on’, which you design yourself with goals you can easily accomplish. Making small ‘mindless’ changes to your eating habits can shave off 100-200 calories per day without a lot of thinking or deprivation. This is a concept that I wholeheartedly agree with. I advise clients to make small changes that are sustainable over the long term, so their lifestyle changes slowly and permanently. Brian Wansink makes a great analogy in the book for weight loss. You can run and get there fast, but walking and taking one step at a time is much more effective and enjoyable. The book is well worth reading, their website is informative and also has daily goal sheets that can be downloaded: