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For many people, food is an unhealthy obsession and this is not helped by the fact our kitchens have grown bigger, fancier and more cluttered. Your kitchen interior and its décor could literally be making you pile on the pounds without you even realising it.

The great American actor and comedian Rodney Dangerfield once said: “I’m at the age where food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact, I’ve just had a mirror put over my kitchen table”.

Dangerfield’s quotation is a funny one but it reveals a certain truth that has developed over the last few decades. The fact is our kitchens have gained more of a social atmosphere and are now almost on a par with the living room as a place in the home where families spend the most time.

This trend, along with increasing consumerism and fast food diets, has led to the increasing size of our waists, hips, boobs and bottoms. The same has happened to kitchen interiors which have almost doubled in size since the 1940s and have come to be the most open-planned areas of the home. Frequently the kitchen merges into other spaces such as the dining room and even the living area.

According to a recent British kitchen company survey, people in the West now spend more waking time in the kitchen than anywhere else in the home. Televisions, laptops, phones and other electronic gadgets have been increasingly placed in the kitchen. Various daily routines which are normally enjoyed in another location are now done in the kitchen such as homework, watching TV or surfing the internet.

It’s therefore no surprise that our propensity to nibble constantly throughout the day has increased. There are ways however to stop allowing your kitchen to make you fat. The cures are simple to implement and might well knock off 2 pounds a month from your overall body weight. So what are they?

Congregate Elsewhere

The kitchen is, and always has been throughout history, a place to prepare, cook and store food. In the olden days (when your grandparents were children), the kitchen would be closed down after dinner in the evening and not used again until the following morning. It was empty when food preparation was not taking place.

Move out of the kitchen when not cooking, cleaning or serving meals. Sit in the living room to watch television, create a little home office space in which to surf the internet and take visiting friends into the garden or dining room when they pop round for coffee and cake.

The result will be hundreds less calories consumed by mindlessly snacking and nibbling whilst distracted by daily activities.

Smaller Dinnerware

Plates and bowls have grown larger over the last half century. With the manufacturing of bigger restaurant-style dishes, the natural inclination to put more food on the plate has resulted in fatter bottoms, double chins and wider hips. Dieticians have also noted we have a tendency to eat whatever is placed on our plate even if it’s too much.

If you’re often feeling bloated after a meal and your weight is a concern, invest in smaller dinnerware pieces that are approximately two to three inches smaller than the ones you have now. The same goes for drinking vessels such as beer, wine and port glasses, as well as the glassware you use for drinking carbonated soft drinks.

Want to lose an extra two pounds a month? Reduce your plate size by two centimetres!

Eat Slowly

Most of us eat too quickly and swallow food before its truly ready to enter the stomach. Our back teeth (the molars) are there for a reason and that is to grind food down to a pulp before it is swallowed. This makes the digestion process a lot smoother and comfortable and means that more nutrients and vitamins are absorbed by the body.

Another benefit of eating slowly is based on the fact that it takes the brain up to 15 minutes to process whether the stomach is full or not from the commencement of eating. By the time the brain is telling the body it is full, it’s too late and all the food on the plate has been eaten. It’s no wonder that overweight people tend to be the first to finish at the dinner table.

By eating slowly, you’ll be able to reduce weight as well as feel healthier. You might not need to go to the bathroom so often either.

Fridge Size

Fridges, like girths, are getting bigger and bigger. Double-door fridges with lots of fancy gadgetry and buttons are becoming the norm in homes and this in turn feeds the need for excess food consumption. For large and busy families, it is completely understandable that large refrigerators are required as there are more mouths to feed and not enough time to be constantly going to the local store. That said, a full fridge does mean a place to dip your hand into when no one is looking.

When possible, in order to cultivate a healthier lifestyle and eating habits, it’s best to keep the fridge semi-full. Try to buy fresh food and avoid ready-made meals which are usually high in calories. A semi-stocked fridge will prevent the desire to nibble and snack and will also encourage you to make healthier choices.

Glass Shelving and Storage

Fitting glass see-through cabinet doors in the kitchen might be a neat design trick but it will do little for your panty size. Some people even fit glass shelving into their kitchen and compliment these with glass canisters and jars filled with foods such as cookies, pasta and candies. There’s a reason “out of mind, out of sight” is a well-known saying.

Purchase regular cabinet doors which hide the items inside the cupboard. Alternatively, buy canisters, jars and tins that are not see-through and thus don’t pose so much of a temptation to eager eyes and stomachs. Of course, a fruit bowl is the exception the rule and for obvious reasons.

Simple Considerations

Bear these simple tactics in mind next time you enter your kitchen and you’ll soon discover what elements in the interior are making your weight issues worse. There are more factors to consider too such as lighting, the color of the walls and most importantly of all, your diet. However, implementing these five important tips will help to stop your kitchen making you fat.

See also: Need to Loose Weight? Think About Your Interior Décor.