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Natural Awakenings

Low-Fat Foods Can Lead to Obesity: Avoid These Tricky Tastes

“Stick with the regular version of foods, but eat a little bit less,” counsels Brian Wansink, Ph.D., author of Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think. “It’s better for both your diet and your taste buds.”

His study of people at an open house showed that they indulged in an average one-third more chocolate candies when they were labeled “low-fat.” Whoops. Obese people toted up as much as 45 percent more. Research at movie theaters, holiday receptions and homes showed a similar pattern.

In fact, low-fat snacks average just 11 percent fewer calories although folks falsely believe they’re as much as 40 percent lower. Moreover, “people don’t realize that low-fat foods are not always low-calorie foods,” says Wansink. “Fat is often replaced with sugar.” Time to rethink the old diet.

Source: Journal of Marketing Research

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