Fast Eating Increases Risk for Type 2 Diabetes

By: Byron J. Richards, Board Certified Clinical Nutritionist
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Numerous studies as well as direct observation tell us that a person who eats fast is likely to be overweight.  A new study extends this observation to the increased risk for type 2 diabetes.  The study found that the fastest eaters are 2 1/2 times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes.

In a healthy person it takes 10 minutes for an adequate amount of food to create a full signal in your brain.  You can eat a lot of extra food in 10 minutes.  Once you start gaining weight the full signal system in your brain further malfunctions, meaning you are likely to eat everything in sight as fast as you can. 

We can now say that this is a fast track to becoming type 2 diabetic.  Slow down, have some conversation.  If you are overweight and tend to be a fast eater, take a 10 minute break from eating once you are half done with a normal size meal.  Give your faltering full signal a fighting chance!

It takes great willpower to stop eating after your have consumed a normal number of calories (generally 400-600 calories per meal depending on your activities).  If you want to know how nutty your full signal has become, push away from the table after a normal portion and go do something else.  Pay attention to how long it takes for your full signal to show up. 

Be happy if it shows up within 10 minutes as the remedy to fix your faulty full signal is simply a matter of slowing down.  For many overweight people it is 20 minutes to one hour – people can eat a lot of food they don’t need in that amount of time. 

As you get in better harmony with leptin, increase your brain plasticity with nutrients, and exercise your normal full signal can get back on track.  It can take some time for your brain to get sorted out.  In the mean time, willpower may be the difference between success and failure.  Simply understanding that your full signal is in a funk tends to help; at least you understand part of the nature of the tiger you are trying to tame.  Eating slower is one helpful step in the right direction.

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