CLOSE THE DOOR ON CRAV­INGS

Shun­ning sugar for this first week is go­ing to be tough, so re-or­der your fridge to boost your chances of suc­cess

Women's Health - Shrink Your Sugar Belly - - CONTENTS -

Un­less you’re one of life’s true pedants (or have an overly in­ti­mate re­la­tion­ship with your fridge – there is ther­apy for that sort of thing), chances are you un­pack your weekly gro­cery shop with as much thought as you give Sun­day’s laun­dry. A tri­an­gle of Brie on the top shelf and milk on the in­side of the door. Greens and yo­ghurt might get a slot on the sec­ond row, while the slab of cho­co­late cake – that some­how made it in there – sits glar­ingly up front. But be warned, new re­search shows where you put your food can have a big im­pact on how much you eat, so it’s time to be­come fridge aware. Here’s how to stack – and snack – your­self slim­mer.

COLOUR CODE

Ever open your fridge and feel like it’s an out­take from TLC’s Hoard­ing: Buried Alive? We know the feel­ing. What we bet you didn’t know, though, is re­search pub­lished in the Jour­nal of Con­sumer Psy­chol­ogy found a clut­tered fridge can quash your willpower. Nutri­tion­ist and weight-loss coach Nicky An­stey ex­plains that in a busy fridge, the bright, at­trac­tive pack­ag­ing of less healthy prod­ucts dis­tracts you from the more earthy colours of your fresh pro­duce – there’s a rea­son Mc­Don­ald’s chose a red and yel­low colour scheme. Both these colours have been proven to boost your ap­petite, par­tic­u­larly red, which sig­nals ripeness and sweet­ness, ac­cord­ing to re­search pub­lished in the Jour­nal of Sen­sory Stud­ies. So ditch the straw­berry cheese­cake and re­place it with red- or yel­low-hued healthy snacks. Bring on the pep­pers.

MAKE EYE CON­TACT

“Place your health­i­est snacks and food with the most nu­tri­ents at eye level,” says eat­ing and be­havioural ther­a­pist James Lam­per. “So if you get the munchies, they’ll be the first thing you see when you open the fridge.” Ac­cord­ing to a US study, you’re 2.7 times more likely to eat healthy food if it’s in your line of sight. If you want to go the ex­tra mile, store your naughty treats at the back of the fridge and the bot­tom of the pile. A study led by nu­tri­tional be­hav­iour pro­fes­sor Dr Brian Wansink sug­gests the more in­con­ve­nient the lo­ca­tion of your cho­co­late, the less likely you are to reach for it.

BUY BIG, EAT SMALL

A study pub­lished in the Jour­nal of Mar­ket­ing found that peo­ple eat larger quan­ti­ties of junk food if it’s kept in clear pack­ages. The same re­search also showed that when your naughty treats are bite-sized, you’re more likely to eat more. (Our ad­vice: buy the bowl­ing ball of Edam rather than se­duc­tive mini cheesel­ings.) And keep your cho­co­late and cheese in opaque Tup­per­ware at the back of the fridge. Plus, if you can, make the con­tain­ers blue. Stud­ies show that blue is an ap­petite sup­pres­sant.

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