Hack Your Brain To Stop Overeating

Sometimes the easiest advice can be the hardest to follow. For example: if you want to lose weight, you must eat right and exercise. You can avoid both and still lose weight by simply eating less, but that takes willpower.

Losing weight is one of the hardest things a person can do, because we have to eat to survive. That leaves the problem of stopping when we’re full. Here in the united states of high-fat foods and huge portions, that can be really, really difficult, as evidenced by the obesity statistics. But no matter where you live, it’s easy to ignore the ‘stomach full’ signal. It’s kind of slow, anyway. So how do you get yourself tuned into the signal? All it takes is a little classical conditioning.

Slim Band is simple, but effective. Basically, it’s a pack of breath-freshening strips strapped to a timer PCB and set into a watchband. Set the five-minute timer when you start eating, and when it goes off, take out a strip and mintify your mouth. By the time the minty-ness wears off, you should feel full enough to push your plate away. The convenience factor is a big plus—there’s no getting the phone out to set an alarm, or digging for mints in your pocket or purse.

Though the idea began as a personal improvement project, [Chaz] would like to see it widely adopted as a way of fighting obesity and evening out the world’s food distribution in the longer term. We would, too.

30 thoughts on “Hack Your Brain To Stop Overeating

  1. I’m sorry, but while neat, this person probably has no kids and this device will be less thsn useful for parents.

    See when you have small kids your meal period will be less than 5 minutes.

    1. :-) I have a 5 and 7 year old. Yes it is hardest at home, at dinner. So much temptation. I have found only 2 things work (for me) with that situation. 1 Only have a drink and then eat leftovers for a short time, 2. Ensure my kids clear their plate themselves, which they should anyways. I have found I do order for 1 less person now when I go out to eat.

      1. A five minute timer to stop people overreacting would be a fantastic invention. Imagine an online conversation where the moment you start typing a reply, the input field locks up for five minutes and says “think about the human being you are replying to”. I predict it would cut shitposting by more than this invention cuts calorie consumption.

  2. Yet another way to avoid interacting with your family! Who needs conversation and companionship for a leisurely, satisfying meal, when you can eat bits of plastic instead?

    “The technology in my life, distracts me from the call of Mother Nature, so clearly the answer is more technology”

  3. As someone who consumes available food around me at a pace appropriate for an eating contest contestant and later pays the price with tight fitting pants and stomach pains, a force-stop timer would be an invaluable asset. To hell with the mint strips, just a beeper at 2 minutes is a good idea. Thanks for it!

  4. HIgh Fat ? you mean high vegetable fats that are not digestable by human beings… High Carbs is the US recommended healthy diet, but something must be wrong if after more than 60 years, US population is more obese and diabetic than ever… oh well…

    1. – Calories in >> calories out makes you fat.
      – Inactivity makes you unfit (and lowers the bar of excessive calorie intake).
      – Fatty foods are calorie-dense so easy to eat excessive calories from
      – This is also true of processed high carb foods
      – Processed high carb low fibre foods have the added benefit of being less satisfying leading to more overeating, blood sugar swings, food cravings, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes and all that good stuff

  5. You just need to eat slowly. I eat for at least an hour in the evenings. 64 yo, 6’1″, 13 stone.

    Same jeans size as I was in 1970.

    Those portion sizes they serve when eating out in The States are criminal.

  6. I think the true American way is that one has a rifle some ammunition and has to find some ducks, hares, or wild turkeys, skin them ad make a casserole.
    I suppose the physical activity will help to lose fat.
    Joking aside, I think that stopping to eat heavily processed industrial foods and try to prepare meals from basic ingredients will help to make healthier dishes and make smaller portions. Instead of use canned spaghetti, in ten minutes one could boil 100 grams of spaghetti and make a sauce from oil, onions, peppers and tomato sauce. In meantime one could cook in the microwave bacon and Belgian white salad, and finally eat an apple.

  7. This is amazing. Maybe have some randominity to the timer. It goes off somewhere between 4:30 and 5:30, just to keep people on their toes. Clearly the creator is a genius and not a lunatic.

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