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Overeating? These Tips Can Help...

The 20 Minute Meal


How long does it take you to eat a meal from start to finish? 4 minutes, 5 minutes, 7 minutes… at the most? Many of us are so used to running around all day that we no longer take the time to actually sit down and enjoy a meal. We rush through dinner so we can get the next thing done. Unfortunately, when we eat quickly, it’s destroying our metabolism and our ability to lose weight!

It actually takes about 20 minutes from the point where we start eating for out stomach to signal to our brain that we are full. So, when you eat a big meal in 5 minutes, you are more likely to overeat for your body’s energy requirements.

Have you ever noticed that when you eat a full meal very quickly, you start to feel REALLY full about 15 minutes later? That’s because it took that long for the stomach to signal to your brain that you had enough food. Our stomach only has so many enzymes that break down food, so when we overwhelm these enzymes by eating too quickly, some food doesn’t get properly digested and the undigested food sits in our digestive tract, making us feel tired and groggy, Eventually, that food gets broken down into fat, because that is the easiest way for your body to store excess energy.

How can you fix this problem? 

The best way to avoid excess consumption of food is to take longer to eat. Eventually you want to be able to spend 20 minutes eating a meal. First,  time how long it takes you to eat your regular dinner (the first time I did this, I only took 4 minutes to eat). Then, add 5 minutes to your meal time every few days. When you get up to 20 minutes, you will notice that you might not over eat and actually feel energized after eating, rather than tired.

Here are some tips to help you make your meals longer:

  1. Think of meal time as sacred, rather than an inconvenience. Take the time for yourself, or spend quality time with your family.
  2. Breathe between bites! No need to shove all the food in your mouth at once! It will still be there in another 20 seconds.
  3. Put your fork down between bites.
  4. Chew your food!!
  5. When you are full, don’t keep eating. Clear your plate from the table or push it away so you aren’t temped to keep eating.


Emily Grinton

2 Join the Conversation

  1. Kurt Battick says
    Feb 02, 2018 at 8:06 PM

    Living in a fast pace world it's understandable how you can get stuck in the cycle of eating fast and eventually over eating. I agree totally with this article, just wish it was just easier to slow down the process of putting food in my mouth.

    • says
      May 23, 2018 at 4:22 AM

      It is so easy to get stuck with this!!

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