June 5, 2023
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At a time when 38% of the world’s population is obese or overweight, and when food visuals are booming, viewing food images could be the basis of a new diet to lose weight. .

Lose weight by looking at pictures. While numerous studies have shown that exposure to food images increases appetite and promotes food intake, a recent study from the University of Aarhus in Denmark points out that the repeated consumption of imagined foods can on the contrary facilitate satiety and decrease food intake. However, exposure must be controlled.

During their study, the results of which were published in the journal Appetitethe scientists sought to stimulate and influence participants’ eating behavior through controlled visual exposure to food.

By manipulating the color and variety of several confections, they established that three exposures whet the appetite while thirty exposures satiate.

A first group had to look at images of M&M’s three times. A second group watched them thirty times. Although more exposed to images of M&M’s, the second group had less desire to consume them than the first.

The same brain areas are mobilized when we eat or when we think we are eating. According to Tjark Andersen, one of the study’s leaders, “this is why we can feel fully satisfied without having eaten anything”.

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