Friday, April 10, 2009
I'm not sure if others will relate to this or not, but here it goes...
When food is put in front of me, I notice the following changes in my physiology: pulse quickens, tunnel vision forms, slight perspiration commences, sense of smell heightens, and (of course) salivation commences. All of this anticipation results in a food consumption process which must be disturbing to observe. Imagine a high-RPM windmill-like device with a spoon/fork at the end of each blade rapidly depositing food into a mouth-like receptacle.
I call this Food Rush. Obesity researchers refer to this as "food anticipation" (more on this in later posts). It does not seem to be a particularly healthy way to approach a plate of food from a digestion point of view, and it can certainly result in difficulties monitoring hunger. My mind has no time to determine if I'm still hungry as I proceed through the meal. Food Rush is certainly one of the factors that led to my charter membership in the Clean Plate Club.
The other day, I was watching my dog, Gabby, eat her breakfast, and it occurred to me that Food Rush is a behavior shared by many a large dog.
For those keeping score, it takes Gabby precisely 56 seconds to eat a large bowl of food. More impressive is that she finishes her race despite the presence of a large red plastic device designed to slow her down. It's almost like watching a boxer artfully and aggressively maneuver around her opponent as she lays waste to him.
It strikes me that the way I eat doesn't always look that different from Gabby's signature style. So now I'm trying to make it a practice to take a deep breath when the plate lands in front of me. Maybe I should try the big red plastic speed inhibitor device on my plate.