As soon as summer arrives, all kinds of cold drinks and snacks will be sold out, and you will have more time to stand and eat. But the researchers suggest that if you really want to enjoy a good meal, it’s best to sit down.
A new study published in the Journal of Consumer Research found that posture affects taste. Sit down and eat, the taste will be better. The lead author of the study, Dr. Dipayan Biswas, a marketing professor from the University of South Florida, investigated the interaction between the vestibular sensation (located directly in front of the face, responsible for balance, posture, and spatial orientation) and the taste system.
He found that even standing for only a few minutes would cause a pressure reaction in the body, which in turn destroyed the function of the taste buds. Gravity pushes blood to the lower part of the body, so the heart needs to work harder to pump the blood back to the upper part of the body, and the heart rate rises. This activates the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, resulting in an increase in cortisol concentration. It is these chain reactions that reduce sensory sensitivity, affect food and beverage taste, temperature perception, and your food intake.
If people are not in a comfortable state, such as getting sick, the delicious food on weekdays will become uninteresting. Biswas confirmed his hypothesis through this trial conducted by 350 participants. In the first experiment, the participants ate the same potato chips, and the final feedback was that the standing person rated the potato chips worse than the sitting person.
Later, the researchers selected a one-of-a-kind classic chocolate cake with a high overall evaluation. Similarly, the sitting participants thought the cakes were delicious. However, when the baker adjusted the formula and added 1/4 cup of salt to it, there was a diametrically opposite result. Participants who stood eating cakes didn’t notice that the chocolate cakes were so salty, they were more delicious than the ones sitting.
“This finding suggests that parents can try to let children who don’t want to eat vegetables stand up, so that vegetables, which are usually healthy and annoying, will become more palatable. Similarly, if you take medicine that is bitter, you can Try to take medicine.”
Next, Biswas further expanded the scope of the study by adding additional physical stress. He asked the participants to carry shopping bags to eat fruits and snacks, in order to imitate the scenes where people usually try to sample while shopping.
In this experiment, the participants who stood and reported that the extra weight made the food taste bad. This highlights the underlying mechanisms associated with physical stressors that cause posture differences in taste perception.
In addition, the researchers also tested it with hot coffee. Participants who are standing are not nervous, but they drink less, which indicates that physical stress can suppress people’s appetite to some extent.
Therefore, standing and eating may help you achieve long-term weight loss goals. Specifically, the amount of food that is standing and eating will be lower than sitting. At the same time, standing posture will increase the body’s stress response, so that the heart pumpes more blood and promotes circulation.