The phrase “guilty pleasures” couldn’t hold truer when it comes to a dieter indulging in a chocolate treat, or any forbidden non-dieting foods for that matter. The pleasure of eating something you know you shouldn’t is intensified just because you know it’s naughty, and chocolate is one if not the biggest sacrifice a dieter has to make. But oh boy, does it taste good when you do have a little treat, it’s like a little piece of heaven.
But why does chocolate taste better when you’re dieting? This was a question that played on Kelly Goldsmith’s mind too, after a co-worker of hers admitted every thing taste better when you’re on a diet. Curious to understand why, she carried out a scientific study at the Northwestern University, in Illinois.
Her findings were published by the Mail Online.
Study – Why Chocolate Taste Better When You’re Dieting
Does stuff actually taste better when you’re on a diet? Does stuff taste better when you feel guilty eating it?’
The resulting study, published in The Journal of Marketing Research, was made up of six different experiments.
In the first researchers split participants into two groups and asked them to view six magazine covers.
Half looked at health related magazine covers and half looked at covers which were completely unrelated.
They were all then given chocolate bars for what they were told was a ‘taste study’, reports Medical Daily.
All of those who had been reading about healthy eating reported that the chocolate tasted better than those who had not.
A second experiment split around 100 undergraduate students into three groups and asked them to describe three experiences in a few sentences.
It included times that they felt guilty, times that they felt disgusted, and the final third were asked to describe three random times.
Then all the students were given a chocolate truffle to eat.
All of the students who relived their guiltiest moments reported that the chocolate truffle tasted better than the other groups. Read the full article here.
Obviously the taste of chocolate is linked with guilt, nothing surprising there. So how do you overcome this, I mean other than confirming what you already know, this article does not provide a solution to the problem.
So I’ve decided to share something with you that I’ve been doing these last few weeks. I’ve been giving myself one guilt free day a week, every Saturday I allow myself to eat whatever I want including chocolate, I did it to make the rest of the week easy and giving myself something to look forward to at the end of the week.
What I have discovered is even on my guilt free day I end up eating fairly healthy because the so called naughty foods are not that appealing to me. Look I do get a takeaway with a dessert… guilt free! But I find my excitement for it is less than when I usually have a takeaway unplanned, you know when for what ever reason you get to a point where you say damn with the diet I’m having a takeaway tonight… With a guilty feeling.
I guess what I’m trying to say, is by allowing yourself a guilt free day you’re removing the guilt, by removing the guilt you’re removing the pleasure. Well it seem to be working for me (accidentally discovered), and the funny thing is I’ve had my best losses those weeks.
Will this work for you? I don’t know, but for me it solved the problem revealed by this study.
Did this article help you in anyway? I hope so, you can let me know by commenting below or hitting the like button.