The Globe and Mail recently published an article “Is your sleek new kitchen making you fat? Modern spaces are not doing your waistline any favours” (Ellen Himelfarb, April 9, 2015) that claims that kitchen designers are “inadvertently helping to foster unhealthy habits.” and it is supported by two major influencers in the sphere of consumer habits:
The consumer behavioural and nutritional science researcher Dr. Brian Wansink (Ph.D. Stanford 1990), who authored “Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think” and “Slim by Design: Mindless Eating Solutions for Everyday Life.”
The managing editor of Treehugger Lloyd Alter, who is also an Adjunct Professor of sustainable design at Ryerson University School of Interior Design (Toronto) and a well published writer in Azure, The Guardian, and Huffington Post.
Read the article here.
The fundamental premise that current kitchen design methodology lacks awareness of consumer eating habits and that designers are causing unhealthy lifestyles might go against all the principals, standards, and ethics that we are taught and/or learn as skilled professionals. The reaction is quite visceral and real. Have we, Certified Kitchen Designers, Interior Designers who work as professional kitchen designers, or associated industries contributed to un-healthy homes for our clients?
There is a new surge in the interior design and architectural field called “Wellness Design”. ASID has begun to shift their focus onto this topic and how they can help their membership and professionals become more nimble to the overall well-being of the end users – our clients.
Our discussion questions:
1.) Is the intent of kitchen design to make our clients fat?
2.) What is “wellness design” in kitchen & bathroom design?
3.) Do K&B professionals require more curriculum & CEU’s on consumer habits?
4.) Has the state of the industry distracted us from this important consumer change?
5.) What are some updates we can make to planning to resolve unhealthy habits in the kitchen?