How many bites do you take a day? If you're on the neverending pursuit of weight loss and you're not reaching 100 a day, then you might have to go back to the drawing board.
While slow eating has long been hailed as aiding digestion and keeping us feeling fuller for longer, new research has found that there might be some truth in this after all.
Researchers now believe that taking smaller bites and chewing more slowly is integral to weight control - it's no longer just about what you eat, but how you eat.
Kathleen Melanson, director of the University of Rhode Island’s Energy Balance Lab, explained to the Wall Street Journal: ‘There’s very strong evidence pointing to the importance of chewing. The nerves that feed into the muscles in the jaw connect to satiety areas in the brain.’
And with every new diet fad, researchers have been designing and developing devices themed around the 100 bites idea.
You can already buy the HAPIfork, which makes sure that you are eating at the right pace - if you're not, it will vibrate and flash until your bites are spaced more than 10 seconds apart. And there's even a Bite Monitor too.
This watch-like device, which was developed by South Carolina's Clemson University, works like a pedometer for your mouth and counts the number of bites you take each day.
After monitoring 77 people over two weeks, the team calculated that the average number of calories per bite was 17 for men and 11 for women. If you take 100 bites a day, it makes the daily calorie target roughly 1,700 for men and 1,100 for women. These are considered a low-calories diet according to the National Institutes of Health Standards.
Research so far has shown that people who count their bites lose more weight than those who don't. So, is 100 your magic number?