I don’t know about you but when I choose to indulge during a meal, it’s usually while eating out. Most often, I save the fish and vegetables for at-home dining and leave the cheeseburgers and french-fries for restaurant meals. And apparently, I’m not alone. In general, people tend to make healthier choice while eating at home. But why?
A study published in the July American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests that people tend to prepare healthier meals when they are in a good mood at home. In turn, they feel more emotionally rewarded and are more likely to stay on track—eating healthfully. People feel most content at home and the positive emotions associated with home-cooked meals might contribute to a healthy diet, researchers say.
The results are based on 160, white, non-obese females who reported their emotional states before and after eating a meal. Findings show that emotional factors may be able to cancel out our natural preference for fatty, sugary foods. The researchers say that factors like music, dining atmosphere and cooking equipment have all been able to induce positive feelings and may be vehicles to encourage healthy eating.