Eating while watching television or working at a desk could lead to excess weight gain, according to a new study, because people are not aware of how much they have eaten.
By contrast, researchers found that remembering previous meals that were delicious and filling can lead to us eating smaller portions and ultimately enjoying trimmer waistlines.
Techniques such as writing down previous meals and using visual reminders of previous meals, such as keeping food wrappers were found to help with awareness of comsumption and lead to a reduction in meal sizes.
Lead researcher Dr Eric Robinson, from the Institute of Psychology, Health and Society based at Liverpool University, said if people recalled their last meal as being filling and satisfying then they ate less during their next meal, the Telegraph reported.
He added that this could be developed as a new strategy to help with weight loss and maintenance and reduce the need for calorie controlled dieting.
The findings were published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.