Half the problem with dieting is that what you know is good for you is in competition with what feels good. One way to help is to trick yourself into feeling satisfied with less food by dimming the lights.
Photo by Trysil
According to a study published in Psychological Reports, customers dining in a remodelled section of a restaurant with dimmer lighting and a less harsh environment took more time with their meals and ended up eating less. They believed that by making the ambiance less intense, people won't feel compelled to rush through their meals:
"When we softened the lights and softened the music in the restaurant it didn't change what people ordered, but what it did do was lead them to eat less and made them more satisfied and happier," said Brian Wansink, a professor of marketing and consumer behaviour at Cornell University in New York.
"Spending that extra time eating a little more slowly at a more relaxed pace made a world of difference, not just to how much they ate but how much they liked it."
Obviously, turning down the lights won't replace a proper diet plan. However, while you're changing your eating habits, it may be worthwhile to adjust your eating area as well. Best case, you'll finish your meal sooner and be more satisfied doing it. Worst case, your dinner table looks a little nicer.
Want to cut calories? Dim the lights, study suggests [Today.com via Dumb Little Man]