With Who You Eat affects What You Eat

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Aug 01, 2011

The next time you go out with your girlfriends keep in mind that in all probability you will end up eating more calories because you are with women. Well, we are not being sexist at all! According to a new research, with who you eat affects what you eat!


Directed at looking at the way in which social settings define eating habits, the research observed that women are subconsciously attuned to the idea of eating smaller portions and fewer calories when in the company of men. On the other when a group of women dines together, the number of calories usually shoots up. According to researcher Meredith Young of McMaster University, this finding is not at all surprising. Women have been trained to think that a man finds a woman who eats less more attractive.


For the research, the eating habits of students at US’s three major universities were taken into account. Students probably know who they are to eat with before they choose their food. Therefore, they decide on food based on the predominant gender of the group that they eat with. A group with more boys means lesser calories for the women in that group, compared to a group with only women.


The research is hinged on the fact that eating is a social activity where peoples’ perception of another person’s eating habit play a significant role in choice of food. In fact, the diet industry has used this idea to propagate the idea of the ideal body. Slimmer women who eat small portions have been traditionally accepted as more feminine. This furthers the association of food with societal response.


The most interesting fact in this research is that the social setting does not affect the way in which a man eats food. Men are not subjected to ideals of eating in the right manner and in the correct portions. However, women are mentally conditioned to feel that they need to eat less when around a man in order to attract him. It seems like women get the raw end of the deal here!


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