Who doesn't get enticed by the smell of pizzas, burgers or those yummy sandwiches? Our hunger doubles up with the whiff of high-calorie foods. So in case you are trying hard to refrain from pizza but finally end up grabbing a slice, then we have a useful piece of advice for you. Researchers suggest that smelling high-calorie foods for longer than two minutes can make you feel satiated.
The study showed that ambient food scent can directly satisfy the belly because the brain does not necessarily differentiate the source of sensory pleasure.
"Ambient scent can be a powerful tool to resist cravings for indulgent foods. In fact, subtle sensory stimuli like scents can be more effective in influencing children's and adults' food choices than restrictive policies," said lead author Dipayan Biswas, Professor at the University of South Florida in the US.
The researchers discovered a direct connection between the length of exposure time and whether or not one will indulge.
They also conducted a series of tests using a nebuliser that separately gave off the scent of healthy and unhealthy food items (cookies versus strawberries, pizza versus apples).
The findings, published in the Journal of Marketing Research, showed that participants exposed to the smell of cookies for less than 30 seconds were more likely to want a cookie.
However, those exposed for longer than two minutes did not find that cookie desirable and picked strawberries instead.
The results were the same in case of the scent of pizza and apples. Since non-indulgent foods do not give off much of an ambient scent, they are typically not connected with reward, therefore they have little influence on what we order, the study noted. High caloric foods are high in fats and sugars and extra intake of these types of foods increase your risk factors for obesity, Type-2 diabetes, heart disease as well as cancers.
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