Some people believe that the “Path of Least Resistance” principle makes a difference in what we eat. Also called the “Principle of Least Effort”, this theory, when applied to our food choices, suggests that we will eat the things that are the nearest to us, or the most easily accessible.
I never believed this theory until, during a recent outing with my parents, I found myself eating lettuce. Several pieces of lettuce. They weren’t in a salad or a sandwich. They didn’t have any food companions that would have dressed them up to make them look or taste better. They was just stray, lonely, unadorned, conveniently located pieces of Iceberg lettuce. I don’t even like lettuce!
Upon later reflection, it became clear that the only reason I’d eaten plain lettuce was because they were the closest, most accessible pieces of food at that moment. Reluctantly, I acknowledged that the “Path of Least Resistance” theory has some merit.
Peter Weiss, in his book More Health, Less Care reports that “how much food people eat at meals is affected by . . . whether or not serving dishes are brought to the table.”
Try this experiment: the next time you sit down for a meal, bring the serving dishes for the high fiber foods to the table where you’re eating. For the low fiber, high calorie foods, serve up individual portions onto smaller plates, and bring those plates with you to the table, leaving the serving dishes back in the kitchen. Let us know if this idea helps you focus on the high fiber foods at meal time.