How external cues make us overeat.

Why not make the fruit bowl more visible? Put your fruit on the table and not in the refrigerator bin. People say, “That’s okay because I have self-control.” Why not give your self-control a break?

Excellent interview about various findings from research on eating habits. External cues, exercise, perceptions, norming, status, mindfulness, and more generally, over-confidence.

How external cues make us overeat.

Gary Taubes on Dieting | FiveBooks | The Browser

If you look and see who is healthier, you’ll find out that people who were mostly vegetarians tend to live longer and have less cancer and diabetes than people who get most of their fat and protein from animal products. The assumption by the researchers is that this is causal – that the only difference between mostly vegetarians and mostly meat-eaters is how many vegetables and how much meat they eat. I’ve argued that this assumption is naïve almost beyond belief. In this case, vegetarians or mostly vegetarian people are more health conscious. That’s why they’ve chosen to eat like this. They’re better educated than the mostly meat-eaters, they’re in a higher socioeconomic bracket, they have better doctors, they have better medical advice, they engage in other health conscious activities like walking, they smoke less. There’s a whole slew of things that goes with vegetarianism and leaning towards a vegetarian diet. You can’t use these observational studies to imply cause and effect. To me, it’s one of the most extreme examples of bad science in the nutrition field.


Gary Taubes on Dieting | FiveBooks | The Browser

The need to diet, which we know so well in relation to food, and which runs so contrary to our natural impulses, should be brought to bear on what we now have to relearn in relation to knowledge, people, and ideas. Our minds, no less than our bodies, require periods of fasting.

Alain de Botton, “On Distraction” (via austinkleon)