Is your Kitchen Messy?

kitchen Were you aware that your environment has a lot to do with your influence on how much and what you eat? Research has shown that people tend to eat more when in the company of others. Believe it or not, even the state of your kitchen has an impact on your eating habits. Is it well organized or a cluttered mess? Researchers from the University of New South Wales in Australia revealed what the state of your kitchen can mean. You actually eat more sweets if your kitchen is in a state of disarray with dishes piled in the sink, tons of papers on the counter and other odds and ends taking up space.

There was a study conducted of about 100 college students that were asked to recall a time they felt in control, or a time they felt out of control, and then were given cookies, crackers and carrots to taste and rate. Those participants in the chaotic kitchen in the out-of-control mindset ate more (twice the calories’ worth) than those in an in-control frame of mind. Results revealed that eating in a chaotic environment might derail your diet, but the caveat being that your mind may overcome the chaos or its tendency to lead to unhealthy eating.

Your mind may be able to overcome the ill effects of clutter and chaos, but many people in such a state might be lead to increased stress and a chaotic mind. In the book “Lose the Clutter, Lose the Weight” by Peter Walsh, found that people who struggle with clutter were 77% more likely to be overweight or obese. It was indicated this weight gain comes along with a cluttered existence. Stress alters the way fat is deposited because of the specific hormones and other chemicals your body produces when you are stressed.All of that clutter at home and at work may zap your mental energy, productivity and more. It might encourage you to eat more or to eat that unhealthy food.

Being in an unorganized space also leads many people to feel overwhelmed and feeling suffocated and unable to breathe. These conditions can make it impossible to relax, and greatly interferes with creativity and productivity. Most of the US homes are cluttered because they contain too much stuff, not because they lack storage space.

A study revealed that 75% of homes’ garages were so cluttered with boxes, storage bins and other items that there was no room left to store a car.

The average home contained 39 pairs of shoes, 90 DVDs or videos, 139 toys, 212 CDs and 438 books and magazines. Clutterer or hoarder? There is lots of “stuff” that accumulates like mail, laundry, receipts and more. Get rid of that “stuff” fast:

  • Discard anything not used in 12 months
  • Discard stuff that belongs to someone else
  • Discard trash

Easier said than done, huh? This is an ongoing process and won’t happen overnight. You can really make serious progress in 20 minutes if you get your supplies ready, pick a location to start and tackle papers head on. Every item must have a “home”, remember that clutter breeds clutter and put storage solutions where you need them. Visualize your home as you want it and then ask if that item will contribute to your ideal vision of the life you want. Handle an item only once, get rid of something old if you buy something new, only keep one of each thing and buy much less to begin with.

Now, sit down and enjoy that clutter-free environment you just created. Think of all those calories you will be able to pass by now. Just plain enjoy that neat, clutter-free home and maybe thinner waistline.

-Dr Fredda Branyon

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