No matter how healthy we try to be, some of our habits can sabotage our best efforts. Here are a few unexpected reasons we end up eating and drinking more than we should:
- Being a superstar at work. It may seem counterintuitive, but feeling proud of our accomplishments – like a glowing performance review – makes us more likely to celebrate by reaching for high-calorie junk food.
- We’re drinking out of the wrong shape glass. In one study, people drank alcohol 60 percent faster – and drank more overall – when it was served in a curved glass instead of a straight one. It’s hard to assess how much we’re drinking because of the odd shape.
- Our dishes are the same color as our food. In a study in the Journal of Consumer Research, people dished up more spaghetti and meat sauce onto red plates, and put more vanilla ice cream in white bowls. That’s because when the food appears to blend into the plate, it creates the illusion that the portion’s smaller – and that we’re eating less than we actually are.
- We switched from regular soda to diet. Yes, artificial sweeteners save us hundreds of calories. But nutritionists believe that getting intense sweetness without the calories that come from natural sugar disrupts the stomach-brain connection. In other words, our body and brain are primed for calories and energy that never come, making us more likely to crave sweets and overeat.