Think Yourself Full

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Conventional wisdom says that if you have a weakness for, say, Nutter Butters, you should do all you can to avoid thinking about Nutter Butters. But a study published in the December 2010 issue of Science found that daydreaming about gorging on your favorite foods can actually cause you to eat less of them. In one experiment, researchers had a group of volunteers picture inserting 33 coins into a laundry machine. A second group visualized inserting 30 coins and eating three M&M’s. Yet a third group imagined inserting three coins and eating 30 M&M’s. Next, all volunteers were allowed to eat as much as they wanted from a bowl of M&M’s. Which group ate significantly less candy than the other two? The third group. Just as your last bite of a Nutter Butter never tastes as good as your first, the mere act of thinking about consuming food appears to lower your desire to eat as much of it. So before you treat yourself to a cheat food, feel free to daydream away about devouring it first.