We do not really have to cook anymore. Because we do not have to cook what we eat, we do not have to do near as much clean up as we once did. The end result is that we eat more than we otherwise would.
Think I'm crazy? Do you have a cookie jar full of store-bought cookies? You did not have to bake those cookies, you bought them already baked at the grocery store. Now, they are not nearly as good as the cookies that you could have baked at home, but they were convenient and relatively cheap, right? If you had required yourself to bake any and all of the cookies you ate, you would eat fewer cookies, wouldn't you? Baking them is fun, but then you have to clean up the kitchen afterwards, right? This is a no pain for lots of gain situation, boys and girls.
Did you make your last hamburger or did you buy it at the nearest fast food joint? Did you peel the potatoes you fried? Chances are, you purchased your burger and fries at the local fast food joint. Am I not right? If you made your own buns and cooked your own hamburger and peeled and cut up and fried your own potatoes, how often would you have a burger with fries? Once a week? Once a month? Once a week for a month with a three month break in between?
When is the last time you bothered to make oatmeal for breakfast? How many boxes of cold cereal do you have sitting on top of your refrigerator? See what I mean?
When is the last time you made your pancakes from scratch? Chances are good that you bought a mix at the grocery store and made your pancakes with it. How often would you make pancakes if you had to make them from scratch?
What about the syrup you put on your pancakes? Chances are excellent that yo dribbled a quarter cup of faux maple syrup on them. If you restricted yourself to honey, or cane syrup, or a good jelly, I dare say that you would eat pancakes less often because those kinds of sweets do not come cheap. Faux maple syrups or even just plane corn syrups do not cost all that much do they?