Digital distractions are an entrenched part of dinner for many “always on” New Yorkers: 21% of New Yorkers report they are on the Internet while eating dinner at home, with Brooklynites, at 24%, the most likely to be on the web while chowing down at night, according to a new study by Kitchensurfing.
While 54% of New Yorkers eat dinner while watching television, 13% say they are checking their social media or posting to it during dinner, 14% are texting and 16% are checking email. Eleven percent of Manhattanites — the least likely of all New Yorkers to cook their own dinners — work straight through the evening meal, with eight percent of New Yorkers overall saying they stay on their grind through dinner time.
The findings could have health implications. The National Weight Loss Control Registry determined through studies years ago that dieting veterans who are successful in maintaining weight loss watch minimal television. Too, some health experts say a singular and unhurried focus on food while eating it is an important strategy for weight maintenance.
But dinner here is not even always eaten at a table, according to the Kitchensurfing study: 37% of New Yorkers eat their home suppers somewhere other than the dining room table or the kitchen. The couch was the most popular alternative, with 19% chowing down from there. An amazing 6% of New Yorkers say they eat their dinners in bed, with Bronx residents (11%) most frequently reporting that they eat where they sleep. (The survey did not probe whether this habit reflects frequent amorous sessions incorporating strawberries and champagne, the lack of a dining room in which to dine, or the lack of will to sit upright at a table. )
The survey, of 1,000 New Yorkers found that 57% also chat with family members during dinners.
Kitchensurfing, a service that provides chefs who prepare home-cooked meals, discovered that only 7% of New Yorkers spent “nothing” on takeout and delivery meals, with 5% spending more than $100 a week.
The survey also revealed that ovens are increasingly conscripted into uses other than which the appliances were intended: 10% of New York men say they keep shoes, and valuables such as jewelry and money in their ovens, and 30% of guys here use their ovens to store other kitchen appliances. Eight per cent of men and three percent of women use their ovens as de facto file cabinets for mail and papers.
The oven is also, apparently, a useful bin: Eight percent of men and two percent of women use the appliance to store garbage and recyclables.