Is Eating While Standing Up Bad for You

Though it is well-known more healthful choices would be choosing water over soda or fruit over a cookie, there is an interesting debate on not just what to eat, but how and where we eat. In fact, most nutrition experts suggest eating while standing up may risk overeating and may not be as beneficial as sitting down for a meal or snack.

Is It Healthy to Eat Standing Up?

First off, you may be wondering why one would even question the act of eating while standing up, especially if a salad is in hand… Furthermore, sitting down mimics the sedentary lifestyle we are encouraged to dismiss, so why not eat standing up? Let’s break it down:

1. As mentioned, sitting down mimics a sedentary lifestyle, a notion health experts encourage the inactive individual to deviate from. Conversely, standing up reflects a more fast-paced routine.

2. With busy schedules, eating on the run may be seem like the most feasible option to refuel the body. While it does get the job done…

3. …health experts suggest eating constantly on-the-go causes people to rush through meals. And since the body naturally takes 20 minutes to realize it is full, there is a lesser likelihood of feeling satisfied and greater risk of going for seconds and overeating.

4. And not to mention… Rummaging through the fridge and pantries is a standup act, mostly noshing on less-than-nutritious foods based on temptation and impulsivity.

5. That being said, sitting down at the dinner table (not the television or computer) encourages individuals to focus more on their meal at hand, slowing down the process of eating and enjoying the flavors. It also encourages paying attention on what people are eating, rather than mindlessly doing so in front of the fridge.

6. Gathering at the dinner table with others supports the notion of eating together and family dinners, a concept that may have fallen through the cracks in many households. Withholding this tradition fosters stronger and healthier relationships to food, health, and loved ones.

Sit and Slow Down

As mentioned, slowing down plays a large role in controlling calories, and is mostly the mainstay of why eating while sitting may be the most beneficial posture. But beyond caloric control, sitting and slowing down can aid in the digestive process when food is chewed more thoroughly and excess air is not ingested when wolfing down meals. The following tips can further assist in slowing down the meal process:

Savor the Flavor

Eat slowly and really savor each mouthful to naturally keep calories minimized and joy of meals maximized. Appreciate and recognize the effort it took to prepare a well-balanced meal, as doing so can also strengthen an appreciation to nourishing foods.

Put the Fork Down

In between each bite, place the fork down and thoroughly chew your food before picking it up again. This technique naturally slows down the eating process.

Sip On Water

Not only is water advised for overall health, but can lessen the risk of overeating and promote digestion. During and throughout the meal, sip on water and stay weary of liquid calories, including alcohol, soda, and other sugary beverages.

Go Buffet Style

Although an endless food line at restaurants warrants great risk of overeating, research shows people are more likely to overeat if food is in arms reach. So to lessen the food’s proximity, set it out buffet-style or in the kitchen, ultimately making yourself or guests get up for a second plating if truly desired.

Enjoy the Company

Although the meal itself is important for nourishing our bodies, the company can feed our souls. Use mealtime as a safe haven to unwind from daily stress, disconnecting from social media and work emails and connecting with loved ones surrounding the table.