Friday, February 26, 2010

Are you a gobbler or a chewer?

For years and years all you could hear my mum saying to me at the dining table was 'for goodness sake, eat slower'. I am the quickest eater imaginable and I really am trying hard to make my meals last longer. It is said it takes 20 minutes for the brain to register that the body has received some food and the longer you take eating this food, the more full up you will then feel. I'm trying to chew every mouthful about 32 times (I don't know why my mum hit on this magic figure but that's what I remember her saying), but then my meal becomes cold and I hate cold food. At least the re-heating the plate in the microwave uses up some of the 20 minutes.

Talking of gobbling, I found out this week that Weight Watchers consider turkey to be less fattening than chicken. Who knew?

Are you a slow eater or a gobbler - like I used to be


Bill Stankus said...

Currently I'm on 1.5 hour lunch breaks ... so, no matter what, eating slow is a good time killer.

willow said...

I am known to snarf.

Angie Muresan said...

Gobbling was a big no-no at my mom's table. That's good info about the turkey. I didn't know.

the fly in the web said...

When I was working it was a boiling coffee and a sandwich from a brown paper bag eaten at speed.
My father told me that Mr. Gladstone chewed every mouthful 100 times...which I did not then and do not now believe, even of Gladstone.
I try to take my time over a meal, but often, having cooked it, I've lost interest in it anyway by the time it gets to the table.
One way not to gain weight, if not much good for losing it.

Nora Johnson said...

Eating fast I confess as, back at school, the last person to finish lunch had to clear away the plates!

(Who said those were the happiest days of your life?)

xx LOLA:)

PS Agree (over at my place) that the Clooney villa sale price is an obscene amount of money - but loose change to him!

A Woman Of No Importance said...

Ooh, for some reason, I am unable to leave comments in some of your posts! Crapola... Well done on that great weight loss, FF! I was great for a week then fell off the wagon on a week's holiday from work! Oh dear... Need to get that motivation back, you are so right about how some of us slink back into our ruts, and fail to notice some things sliding (or wobbling in my case!)

Congrats on les fleurs (very pretty) and the trip to Paris, it looked lovely - All light and bright and blue skies! Here it's been wet (snowing too) and murky for months... I dream of Paris, I do...

I am so sorry to hear your back is playing up still... I have been having twinges which lead me to think that another disk (or the same one) may be moving about a bit... Here we go... Of course, being clamped indoors owing to the weather doesn't help either... I hope all continues to go well for you, weight wise, which we know will help our unease, and thank you for the very sensitive piece on your favourite band and Mr Flowers' back-story. Very sad. Take care, much love, Fhi x

p.s. I am a bit of a gobbler, but don't eat as fast as my husband and son, and try to encourage them to eat even more slowlly...

Just off to have a skeg at George Clooney's villa - Ciao!

Molly Potter said...

I am the slowest eater I know. Haven't progressed much from the days of sitting at the table chewing the same lump of brown meat -not allowed to get down until it was all gone. A mother with no passion for cooking slows down your intake. I guess that's stayed with me.

I have friends from large families that say their frantic eating comes from the reality that if you were to get seconds, you had to woof it all down!

Contemporary Troubadour said...

It depends! If I'm on the run, I make a quick meal (not, for instance, salad, which is just harder to eat because lettuce leaves don't exactly hop onto the fork very easily). If I'm not, it depends how hungry I was before the meal. The lesson I learned about how to stay full: don't let yourself get so hungry that you can't help eating quickly once you start. So, small meals every 4-5 hours or so. Keeps the blood sugar levels from plummeting too far (or rising too much).

e said...

I went from being a gobbler to being a chewer by learning to put the fork or spoon down between bites. At home, meals are always at table with some relaxing music.

The goal is to relax and the workplace, I would steal time with a sandwich or salad in a quiet spot outside, enjoying the fresh air when I could.

Small meals every three hours or so keep me from plummeting blood sugar and cravings. See if you can find a copy of the Eat Clean Diet by Tosca Reno. I've found that helpful.

Your mum was right about eating more slowly.

Steve said...

I'm most definitelty and unashamedly a gobbler. Unless it's food i don't like. In which case I'm a distasteful nibbler.

Blu said...

I think that I eat fairly slowly, yet have managed to put on several stone since my arrival in France. I think that I am taking after my Mums Mum and have become more rounded!..damn

I do not eat meat so the chicken/dinde dilemma does not affect me.

Owen said...

I'm about as slow as they come... I like to taste it before it goes down the hatch...

DJ Kirkby said...

I'm a gobbler and my mum's a 32 timer. Watching her eat drives me mental (er).

Dash said...

Hello FF, Sometimes I wolf food down like there is no tomorrow, and other times I eat really carefully and slowly, it depends on how hungry I am and believe it or not, the time of the month.

Anonymous said...

Just scoff everything in sight
yes, I eat very quickly
more room for more food.........

they say people with dementia ( my MIL for example)
will eat every time you put lunch in front of them
their brain takes AGES
to register that they are full!
They also say eat on a smaller plate so it looks as if you have more food

Anonymous said...

It may have less fat than chicken but it also has even less taste.

As to speed, it depends how hungry I am but generally I am fairly slow. When I was an articled clerk my principal used to take me out to lunch occasionally; he used to eat sooooo fast you hardly saw the cutlery move, then he would pay and abandon me and bugger off back to the office. Not too bad when we were at the Victoria office, the Albert was lovely. But I wasn't so keen during the stint we did in Peckham. The regulars at the local pub there were a very rum bunch - one of them used to sit there day after day talking to his bottle of guiness, while the others talked (quite loudly) about him.

Jean said...

His nibs is the world champion speed eater. Possibly on account of his mother being such a terrible cook that if there was anything edible on his plate he had to eat it fast before one of his three sisters got it.

I eat slowly, so as not to miss anything, flavourwise, being terribly nosey by nature.

lady macleod said...

Those are the eating habits of a good field soldier. If you have to go to battle it will come in handy!

That's great news as I love turkey but on the other hand I think the only good chicken is a dead chicken (childhood trauma).

Ayak said...

I used to eat very quickly when my children were small, because I always seemed to be in rush...but generally I eat at a normal speed...neither fast nor slow.

I knew about turkey years ago...assumed everyone knew that it was less fattening than chicken. It's often mentioned on cookery programmes for example.

I don't think it has as much flavour as chicken though.

Ken Devine said...

I'm way too fast but will be thinking about it after reading this.

A Super Dilettante said...

My dear, like you, I'm definitely a gobbler. My mother told me when I was young that only shepherds would eat that quick (because they have sheep to watch, I suppose). I don't know turkey is less fattening than chicken. But turkey makes you sleepy. I can only imagine that's why they serve turkey at Christmas and Thanksgiving so that the housewife whoever cook the meal can get some peace! Have a lovely weekend xxx

Lulu LaBonne said...

Snarf - such a great word.

I snarf

Scott Fazzini said...

All that comes to mind is a scene from Absolutely Fabulous where Patsy's not feeling well. Eddy asks if she's had something to eat, "not since 1973" was Patsy's quick response. I love that show.

the fly in the web said...

Congrats on further weight loss...have a great low key birthday!

Phil Lowe said...

I try not to wolf food down as I end up with indigestion. I tend to graze and sometimes forget to eat properly and then I make a nice meal and realise how hungry I am and have probably eaten it too quickly.

Suburbia said...

Painfully slow eater as a child but improved too much over time!!!

Like your new look :)

Rob-bear said...

Bear eats way too fast — and is always hungry. Sigh! Trying to learn something of a slower life, including slower meals.

Glad for your weight loss. And, as someone with a bad back, hope yours improves rapidly.

My experience with turkey is that it is greasier than chicken. But I eat both. Regularly. And a fair amount of vegetable protein. And peanut butter cookies (which I have learned to make).

LadyFi said...

I'm fairly slow... but nothing like my mom - she chews her food 100 times! Man - did we have some loooooong meal times! ;-)

Mark said...

I'm a gobbler - though why I feel mildly guilty about that I'm not sure.

I can't stand people picking at their food, which is not quite the same thing as eating slowly.


French Fancy said...

Bill - you must be a naturally slow eater then, a quickie chomper would find it to hard to make it last

willow - that's a word I've not heard before - 'snarf' - I love it.

Angie - yes, but did you take any notice?
Of your mum's rules, I mean

tfitw - I bet 100 was not true at all - I'm having trouble making it 20

French Fancy said...

doing these replies in fits and starts as I have got so behind - you know what it is like doing loads, it becomes too repetitive and i reckon you all deserve better

Delana said...

So the question food really food anymore after it has been chewed 100 times! Eeuw!

I'm a gobbler but always trying to slow down. I've learned to do that a little more here in France but still find myself stuffing something down my craw (is that a word?) on the run. Old American habit!

On a recent post of mine I asked the question, "who eats all the pastry that is everywhere here in France". An American friend who has lived here for 25 years and is married to a French women explained that the French eat it. Just really slowly. He said he could mow the lawn and take a shower in the time it takes his wife to finish her TINY pastry. She chimed in at that point in a mixture of French and English..."that's because we dé don't dé shovel!

There is much to be learned here.

French Fancy said...

Nora - cheers to us gobblers

AWONI - sorry to hear about potential back probs part II. Our bleedin' bods, eh?

Molly - I remember the tale of when you and your bro heaved a sigh of relief that you now had a lovely dog to hoover up the unchewable morsels

CT - I have my main meals every 4-5 hours - well, that's not exactly true - I suppose about every six hours

French Fancy said...

(this will teach me not to do little and often replies)...

e - good tip that about putting the fork down between bites.

Steve - we're gobblers in arms

Blu - you don't look like you're carrying lots of stones in your photo - you look fine to me

Owen - I need lessons from you

DJ - my dad used to eat really slowly and I was just incredulous at how long he took to eat

Dash - maybe hormones do influence speed of eating - they seem to impinge on everything else

ewix - maybe I've got undiagnosed dementia then, I always seem to be hungry

CA- Oh, I'd hate to be abandoned in a pub to finish my meal. I hate eating alone when I'm away somewhere

Jean - that's funny about being slow because you are nosy

ladym - oh, what happened with you and your chicken?

Ayak - well, I gently poached a breast the other day with low fat cream and tarragon and it was delicious

Ken - let's both try to slow down together

ASD - I think there is a certain substance in turkey that has mood altering properties. I know that sounds daft but it is true - it has tryptonin in it and that has been used chemically now in anti-depressants

Lu - it is - I'd never heard it until willow put it

Hello Scott - I used to love it too.

tfitw - thank you dearie, it's tuesday

Phil - grazing doesn't suit me as I'll overdo it. I have to eat proper meals and then nothing for hours

Sub - thank you :)

Rob - oh I love cookies

Fi - I reckon she and my late dad must have had a lot in common then. He took hours.

Mark - yes, I also feel a bit guilty about it

Delana - when I've watched French people in restaurants they do seem to eat very slowly and they seldom eat the bread (unlike us)

Hadriana's Treasures said...

Good luck, FF, with the weight loss! I too am on a diet (yet again). I've lost a couple of pounds and only started last Thursday. Yes...I eat fast too!

Anonymous said...

I had to smile at this; I'm also a fast eater and can't stand eating my food when it's gone cold. But putting it in the microwave makes it taste slighty different.

CJ xx

e said...

Hullo FF,

I'm interested to learn more about your Open U and whether it does advanced degrees? There is an e-mail link on my profile page if you care to reply off blog.


French Fancy said...

Hade - we will do downwards together - I bet you'll do it quicker than me as well

CJ - yes, I'm not a lover of that microwave taste of slightly dried out but it does make it temporarily very hot again.

e- on my way

Miscellany said...


With 1.5 hours for lunch you find another juror or two, walk to a sit down restaurant, order a sandwich with pickle and drink then proceed to talk about everything NOT related to the case. The olympics, your children, the weather, hobbies, careers, the screwing up healthcare reform - all of which means the 1.5 hours is fully used.

French Fancy said...

Bill, I didn't realise your jury service had started. When I did it we had to stay in the court's canteen (where food was free anyway) - and, as you say, talk about anything but the case.

Hope it's a fascinating one