The drinks: with the music playing soft and slow and the dim lights lulling you into a mood of relaxation, a cocktail or three seem to be in order. The more you drink, the more you might end up eating, because alcohol is known to boost short-term appetite. That’s good news for the restaurant, but havoc for your calorie intake.
The words on their menu: creamy, Grandma’s, Homemade…these are all red flags, designed to seduce your senses by conjuring up images of comfort and satisfaction. The truth is, ‘creamy’ is an alias for ‘fat’, and that ‘grandma’s pie/tart’ is a sugar bomb!
The chill in there…notice how you often feel quite cold when you walk into a restaurant? Makes you want to wrap a blanket around yourself. Since you don’t have access to one, the next best thing? You order a warm, creamy soup! And hot fries. And hearty pasta…you get the idea. Perhaps it’s a good idea to carry a shawl or cardigan the next time you dine out.
The music: yes, we all know that restaurants and shops employ music as a cue to make you eat/spend more. But notice the kind of music that plays at your favorite eatery. Chances are, a beer bar will belt out fast, strong beats to encourage you to eat faster and move out quickly so that others can come in. A fine dining restaurant plays it soft and slow, to create a laid-back ambience that cajoles you to indulge.
The television: you might have noticed this at home as well: While watching your favorite soap on television, you tend to eat more than you intended to. The same thing happens when you eat out. That innocuous looking television screen, fixed strategically across from your table, urges you to guzzle and shovel more… Just a little bit more!