Mimicry of food intake
A Dutch Study, published in PLoS One, has shown that women who eat together tend to mimic each other’s behaviour, eating around the same amount and at the same pace as each other.
The researchers observed 70 young females having an evening meal, where the total number of bites taken by the participants was used as a unit of analyses. For each participant, the total number of bites and the exact time at which each person took a bite was coded.
It was found that both women mimicked each other’s eating behaviour. The females were more likely to take a bite of their meal in congruence with their eating companion rather than eating at their own pace. This behavioural mimicry was found to be more prominent at the beginning than at the end of the interaction. This study suggests that behavioural mimicry may partially account for social modelling of food intake.
For the full article, visit www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0031027