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Is it best to stand, sit at the table or spread the mat on the floor to eat? The expert’s surprising answer

Assoc.Prof.Dr.BS Nguyen Thi Lam

In Vietnam, when eating rice, each family and individual has different habits and ways. Some people sit at the table, but many other houses spread out mats and sit on the floor while eating.

In general, countries around the world also have different eating practices, which may depend on the culture of each country. In Europe, standing parties often appear, in Japan and Korea they often sit on the floor while eating.

So the question is when eating, will it be best to eat standing, sitting at the table or sitting on the floor? Assoc. Prof. TS.BS Nguyen Thi Lam – former Deputy Director of the National Institute of Nutrition said, up to now, there is no standard regulation on how to eat. Whether to eat standing, sitting at the table or sitting on the floor depends on many factors such as economic conditions, culture or daily habits. In terms of health, each of these eating positions can bring different effects.

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Standing to eat will not put pressure on the stomach, helping to eat more. (Illustration)

Standing to eat: Associate Professor Nguyen Thi Lam believes that standing to eat will have certain benefits for digestion. At that time, the stomach will be in the downward direction, making it easier to digest and eat more. However, most of the time when eating standing up takes place at parties, so this is not a common way of eating in families.

Sitting at the dining table: This is the way that many families in Vietnam apply. Assoc. Lam said that sitting at the table is reasonable. When sitting at the dining table, the legs can still be stretched, not too constrained. In particular, the stomach is not compressed but still in the vertical direction, so it is easier to digest and eat more.

Sit down on the ground: This method is also being applied by many families. Assoc. Prof. Lam said that with this method, when eating rice scientifically, the stomach will be pushed up, so it is difficult to eat enough ingredients, hindering the digestion of food.

For overweight and obese people, with the purpose of losing weight, this way of sitting may be okay because their need is to eat less. As for thin people and young children who need to eat enough nutritious ingredients, such a sitting position will push the stomach back up, eating will quickly fill up and eat not enough ingredients.

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Sitting on the floor eating rice is not good for young children and pregnant women. (Illustration)

Moreover, when sitting on the ground, if the tray has small children, it will be more difficult to manage, even if the hygiene is not good, the floor, carpet (mattress) is not clean, it is easy to get infected with bacteria and parasites. In particular, with cramped sitting places, an uncomfortable sitting position can affect the stomach, even the psychology of eating. Pregnant women should not sit while eating.

From the above analysis, PGS Lam believes that eating standing is still the best, but which method is applied depends on the conditions of each family and individual. “A family with a large number of people, a small house, and difficult economic conditions cannot force them to buy a large dining table. Because buying millet anywhere is also a big problem, then forcing them to choose to sit on the floor to eat, and then clean it up,” said Associate Professor Lam.

Assoc. In addition, it is necessary to adhere to some principles such as not to eat for more than 2 hours, not to swallow quickly, to chew food thoroughly for easy digestion, to reduce pressure on the stomach. In particular, when eating, you should focus on eating, do not joke, chat too much because this will affect the quality of the meal.

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