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AMERICAN MORNING

Is Your House Making You Fat?

Aired December 25, 2003 - 08:41   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

BILL HEMMER, CNN ANCHOR: Tough to find a doctor on Christmas? Not here on AMERICAN MORNING. There was some interesting new research on whether or not your house may actually be making you fat. Dr. Sanjay Gupta here with some insights on this. It's interesting. What gives here?
SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, a little interesting. People a little surprised by this. We talk about eating right and exercising. That's obviously important, what about your household could actually be contributing to making you fat as well? Some of these thing you may already know, but we're going to remind you of some of these things today.

The concept is good. Talking about eliminating some of the things in your household. For example, keep this in mind. People respond to their environment. How so? Well, if you eat in front of the television, for example, probably a bad idea because you're going to eat for a longer period of time, usually for the length of a program.

Don't eat standing at the counter either. That usually causes people to shovel food down their throats. Not a good thing. So the location associated with eating. Bring healthy food options into the house and put them out. Make them look appetizing, meaning, you know, have apples lying out on the counter. Make them look appetizing, not by putting caramel on them, but you know, make them -- presentation's really important there. All those sorts of things important in terms of...

HEMMER: And all those things take discipline, too in the bottom line. What about the kitchen? What advice are you giving for that?

GUPTA: There's some important things about the kitchen as well. A couple of things I want to point out. One of them is color. And I read this, and I was surprised by it, but I buy into it.

First of all, take a look at these. Don't linger in the kitchen. That's obviously important. If you're going to linger in the kitchen, that's where the food is. Like you know, that's where the money is, the guys that rob banks. Same sort of thing. Blue suppresses appetite. You may want to paint your kitchen blue.

HEMMER: Come on.

GUPTA: We're going to have a bunch of blue kitchens after this segment, I guarantee it. Red, yellow and orange, they actually stimulate appetite. Also downsize dishware and glasses. You get glasses nowadays that are the size of pitchers. Too big.

HEMMER: Yes.

GUPTA: Eight ounces is what they talk about. That should be the size of the glasses.

HEMMER: So many kitchens are white, though. I wonder what that says.

GUPTA: Well, yes.

HEMMER: Is that a good thing or a bad thing?

GUPTA: It's kind of neutral, I guess.

HEMMER: Yes. Stainless steel fridge, have you done that yet?

GUPTA: We haven't gotten there yet.

HEMMER: Rest of your home, what do you say there?

GUPTA: Important things. Bedroom, really important thing. This is also a good piece of advice, because I buy into this as well. Talking about your curtains now, being able to let in natural light. You know, people put in those really thick curtains, which can be a good idea because it helps you sleep at night, blocks the natural light. Also causes you to go to bed earlier and wake up later. That's probably not a good idea. You maybe wake up with less energy as well. Lighter colors in the bedroom as well. Lavender spray tends to have a calming effect. I buy into that as well. I think it does.

HEMMER: Yes, you buy into a lot of this stuff.

GUPTA: I do.

HEMMER: I thought you were giving the advice. I hope you do.

GUPTA: Well...

HEMMER: All right, what about music? Is there a connection there?

GUPTA: OK, here's the thing with music. I buy into this, by the way. The -- if you're eating and you like to listen to music, so many people do, listen to slower music. Why? Because you'll tend to eat more slowly if you are listening to slower music.

Here's a fact, though. This is true. When you're eating, it takes about 20 minutes from the time you eat for your brain to recognize you have eaten and that you're now full. What does this mean? If you eat a lot of food in 20 minutes, you've probably overeaten. Eat slowly, and you won't eat as much. Listen to slow music. That might help.

HEMMER: Man, I'm hungry. I got to tell you. You have really work up my appetite. Good to see you. Merry Christmas. GUPTA: Yes, take care.

HEMMER: See you later on our program.

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