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NewsBites November 2013 Issue

Lost in That Show? Watch the Snacking

The more immersed you are in a TV program or video game, the more you’re likely to snack, according to a new study. University of North Carolina researchers tested the snacking behavior of 120 men and women, ages 18-35, while watching different TV programs or playing video games. In results published in the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, they reported that the key to increased snacking was greater “transportation”—immersion in the program or game. Participants snacked more, for example, when watching a continuous program than when viewing 90-second loops from the same show. “Narrative appears to be a particularly strong distractor,” researchers concluded, with distraction linked to more mindless munching.

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