This Common Kitchen Habit Says A Lot About Your Weight, New Study Shows

Hide your cereal boxes, hide your soda cans, hide it all, people. Well, except for the fruit bowl. A new study done at Cornell found that women who kept cereal boxes on their kitchen counters were heavier — by an average of 20 pounds! — than those who didn’t. And it only gets worse when you add soda to the kitchen-counter equation.

As Science Daily reports, the study looked at the organization of 200 kitchens in Syracuse, New York. What they found was that the food you store on your kitchen counter says a lot about your weight. There’s the unfortunate cereal news mentioned above, and along with that, the study found that people who left soft drinks on their kitchen counters were anywhere between 24 and 26 pounds heavier than those who didn’t. But good news for all you fruit bowl fans: Those who had fruit bowls on their counters weighed an average of 13 pounds less than those who didn’t.

As the lead author, Brian Wansink, says in the study, “It’s your basic See-Food Diet — you eat what you see.” So the idea is, if you have sugar-laden cereal on your kitchen counter, you’ll eat that — and see it in your jeans size. Same goes for, say, an apple. And while the size of this study was small and the findings are simply correlational, it’s safe to say that keeping your beloved Kashi cereal stored behind closed pantry doors wouldn’t be a bad habit to pick up.

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