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November 2016

We all know that virtual reality can help some couch potatoes lose weight by becoming more active and thus burning additional calories, but researchers in Japan have found another method in which VR can help shed those pounds.

Researchers at the University of Tokyo’s Cyber Interface Lab have come up with a method of using virtual reality to trick our brains and bodies into thinking that we have eaten more than we really have. The system, called Augmented Satiety, uses realistic computer graphics to increase the portion size we think we are eating. You may have a small cookie in front of you, but the VR headset will show the users a cookie which is up to 50% larger. The software also changes the angle at which a users sees their hands in order to make the eating process even more realistic and trick the brain further. The study has shown that this trick can reduce the amount of food eaten by up to 10%.

While such technology may not be totally practical for those looking to lose weight, it could be the start of a more sophisticated way to trick the human brain into eating less. After all a 10% reduction in daily calories could lead to a decent amount of weight loss over time.