Number of Bites Influences Satiety
Satiety is how satisfied you feel from eating. New research shows that the repetition from taking multiple bites can be more satiating than eating one bite or one piece. That is likely the inspiration for food manufacturers developing more bite sized versions of their best selling brands.
If you have one cracker, or 3 crackers, each portion may have the same nutrition, but the 3 cracker portion allows snackers to pop them in their mouths over and over again. This repeated action allows the snackers to slow their snacking and consume their food more thoughtfully. The longer snacking time means the brain has more time to receive the hormonal signals from the gastrointestinal tract and register satiety.
So, what does this mean for bariatric patients? Gastric sleeve (also called sleeve gastrectomy) and lap band patients experience satiety much earlier than most people because of their reduced stomach size. Gastric sleeve patients have had their stomach size surgically reduced, which allows smaller amounts of food to fill the stomach. Lap band patients have the adjustable lap band fitted over their stomach forming a small pouch which fills quickly. Both of these methods help reduce overall caloric intake, which contributes to weight loss. But, over time the stomach can still be stretched to accommodate more food, which can negate the beneficial effects of the surgery.
By taking smaller, but more numerous mouthfuls, you may give your brain more time to receive the signals indicating satiety. Also, chewing each mouthful for longer will not only help your body be able to process and absorb nutrients better, but it will also extend the amount of time spent eating, giving even more time for your brain to receive the feelings of fullness.
Of course, what you’re eating also influences satiety. Bariatric patients are encouraged to consume adequate amounts of protein, and protein does help induce satiety for longer periods of time than a full carbohydrate meal. Gastric sleeve and lap band patients need to pay particular attention to their post bariatric surgery diet to ensure they are meeting their nutritional needs despite their reduced calorie requirement. To accomplish this, high quality foods should be chosen, including lean proteins, heart healthy fats, whole grain carbohydrates, and fresh fruits and vegetables. Just try to take smaller bites and chew them well.
The above is offered by Dr. Shillingford, M.D., P.A., a board certified surgeon specializing in laparoscopic and obesity surgery. Dr. Shillingford’s weight loss surgery patients frequently come from all over South Florida, including Boca Raton, Delray Beach, Miami, Miami Beach, Fort Lauderdale, and Coral Springs. His gastric sleeve, gastric bypass, and adjustable lap band patients are often looking for more tips to promote weight loss and normalize their BMI to under 30. Taking small bites and chewing adequately can help increase satiety.