The team also noted changes in eating speed over the six years, with more than half the trial group reporting an adjustment in one direction or the other.
“The main results indicated that decreases in eating speeds can lead to reductions in obesity and BMI,” they found.
Other factors that could help people lose weight, according to the data, included to stop snacking after dinner, and not to eat within two hours of going to bed.
Skipping breakfast did not seem to have any effect.
Limitations of the study included that eating speed and other behaviors were self-reported. There were also no data on how much participants ate or whether they exercised.
Commenting on the research, Simon Cork of Imperial College London said it “confirms what we already believe, that eating slowly is associated with less weight gain than eating quickly.”