In an intriguing, landmark report published in the prestigious journal, Science, scientists discovered that simply thinking about eating a food can diminish your appetite for it. It seems counterintuitive, but when study subjects mentally visualized or imagined eating a particular food (in this study M&M’s ), they subsequently ate significantly less of it relative to control subjects that did not undertake the mental imagery exercise.
The researchers noted that it is likely a “flawed strategy” to suppress thoughts for the desired food in an attempt to reduce cravings. So go ahead and devour the forbidden foods you crave over and over and over again, but keep it all in your head and out of your mouth because it’s the thought that counts!
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(Science, November 2010)