High-action TV leads to more snacking

Watching high-energy TV shows encourages people to snack more, as opposed to viewing a more subdued interview-style show, according to a study published in JAMA Internal Medicine.

The researchers divided 94 college students into three TV-watching groups. One group watched 20 minutes of the science fiction action thriller The Island, another watched 20 minutes of the PBS interview show Charlie Rose, and the third watched The Island with the sound turned off.

The students each had access to bowls of M&Ms, carrots, cookies and grapes and could eat as much as they wanted. Researchers found that students watching The Island with sound on ate 207 grams of food on average, compared to 104 grams for those watching Charlie Rose. Over the 20-minute period, the students watching the action movie consumed 354 calories, which was 104 more calories than the talk show watchers. Even those watching The Island without sound ate 40 more grams and 100 calories than those watching Charlie Rose.

The researchers believe that the more distracted a person is by what they are watching, the less they pay attention to internal hunger cues.

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Sourced from: Reuters, High-action TV shows lead to more snacking: study