8 Spice Up Your Setting

Hmhance your sensory environment. As we've said, meals are notjust about food. Candlelight, visually pleasing china and flowers, beautiful tablecloths, and music provide multisensory stimulation to link with the smells and flavors of food. When you don't have the time or money to indulge, try a new set of place mats or a vase of flowers, or use the good china once in a while—even when you're alone.

Enriching the sensory, social, and emotional environment surrounding meals feeds your brain, even though you may not be aware of it at the time. Conversely, when you strip iife down to its basics, you deprive your senses. While eating afrozen dinner at a bare table with the TV on satisfies basic caloric needs, it doesn't do much for your olfactory or taste systems, and certainly the emotional impact and novelty factors are low.

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