Healthy Never Tasted So Good Chew on This… Cuz That Ain't Right

April 10, 2012

Shrinking Lunch Time Expands Waistline and Obesity

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Only 30 Minutes for Lunch

There is overwhelming evidence to support the theory that thirty minute lunch breaks are too short and is contributing to the obesity epidemic. Lets first look at the facts:

  1. the average lunch break is thirty minutes,
  2. it takes you approximately 5 minutes to get to your lunch location, IF you stay on site,
  3. it takes you approximately 5 minutes to get back to your work station, IF you stayed on site,
  4. there are 20 minutes left of the lunch break available,
  5. if you have a hot lunch, approximately 10 minutes is needed for heating,
  6. actual time left for eating, digesting and enjoying your food, a whopping 10 minutes.

Now, let’s look at how much typical time is needed  to eat during breakfast, lunch and dinner for proper digestion, weight management and well being.

  1. 15 minutes before the meal eat fiber to feel full so you eat less,
  2. it takes you approximately 5 minutes to get to your lunch location, IF you stay on site,
  3. it takes you approximately 5 minutes to get back to your work station, IF you stayed on site,
  4. if you have a hot lunch, approximately 10 minutes is needed for heating,
  5. actual eating time should be 20 minutes because it takes this long for the brain to register the stomach is full,
  6. using math and science, the amount of time needed to eat a meal is 55 minutes,
  7. studies have also shown that you eat slower when eating with someone else rather than eating alone and this assists with allowing your food to digest properly.

The years preceding the onset of the obesity epidemic, lunch time was 60 minutes. Then when cutbacks began due to budgeting and wanting more work produced, the lunch time was gradually chiseled away to the point we now have 30 minutes. This is half the time it once was.

Ironically, the cutbacks that have left us with 30 minutes or rather 10 minutes, has in actuality created a population that is not only obese and overweight , but is easily fatigued, made irritable more easily and has difficulty learning and processing information.

In an educational setting, this means children are more difficult to handle and have a hard time learning. Workers have more apathy and work output is less.  Therefore, where cutbacks were thought to create more time to work, less work is produced which actually costs more.  this cost has not even begun to calculate in the cost of diabetes, overweight and obesity.

In short, there is much evidence to support increasing the lunch time back to 55 minutes. Additionally, people should make this the heaviest meal of the day in order to burn off the caloric intake. Increasing the lunch time coupled with moving the dinner meal menu to this slot, we can get a handle on diabetes and obesity in a relatively short time.

 

Perhaps First Lady, Michelle Obama may want to include expanding the standard lunch time to 1 hour as part of the Obama Childhood-Obesity Initiative Plan? She and so many others are pushing to make fresh affordable food available in the food deserts, but if there is not enough time to adequately digest these foods, it is going to take too long to make waistlines shrink fast enough to reverse the problem.

 

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