In order to lose weight, often we must reduce our portions and choose foods that will sustain us longer without containing a lot of calories. Most importantly, we need a healthy dose of willpower! A new study offers a creative but quite simple way of reducing our portions: eating in smaller plates!
American researchers invited 85 nutrition experts to an ice cream tasting. Each guest was randomly given either a 17-ounce or 34-ounce bowl and a two-ounce or three-ounce serving scoop. The participants served themselves as observers noted the size of the portions taken.
The results are surprising. The participants who had the bigger bowls served themselves an average of 31% more ice cream, while those who were handed a bigger serving scoop gave themselves 14.5% more. It seems that although these experts were able to judge the size and calorie count of their portion, they couldn’t resist serving themselves a bigger portion if they had a larger bowl.
Many factors affect our food consumption, including the variety of food, the type of music, the temperature of the room, and how fast other diners are eating. The size of the plates used also seems to influence portions.
The same portion can look perfect in a small bowl but look too small in a bigger bowl. If, like many people, you tend to fill your plate when serving yourself, try to pick a smaller plate and avoid going back for seconds. You will then reduce your portions, often without even realizing it. You might even avoid that bloated feeling after your meals.