The More Food on Your Plate the More You Eat, Or Portion Size Counts

Over the years there have been several studies showing the relationship of portion size and the amount of food ateen. Usually the more food you put on your plate the more food you will eat.

In a study of 130 obese type II diabetics half were assigned portion-control bowls and plates. The dinner plates had clearly marked sections for carbohydrates, proteins, and vegetables. The plates for men held an 800 calorie meal. The cereal bowl provided a 200 calorie meal.

Those study participants who used the portion-control dishes lost an average of 5.6 lbs. about 1.8 percent of their body weight. The control group only lost .27 lbs less than a third of a pound about 1. percent of their body weight. My suggestion, if there is any way you can make or buy a portion-control plate and use it, do so. You might look out plates for babies as they are often segmented.

Over the years the size of restaurant meals has increased. Our expectation is for that restaurant meal to be bigger than ever. A study of restaurant meal size was conducted at Penn State. Two meals were prepared a standard size meal and another with 50 percent more food. The price was the same. Customers when served the larger meal ate almost all of it and more of the accompaniments as well. Each participant was asked to rate their satisfaction and the appropriateness of the proportion size. Those served the smaller meal rated the size of the portion as appropriate. They were as satisfied as those served the larger meal.

In another study, potato chips were packed in 5 different size bags. The larger the bag of chips the more the participants ate.

Other studies have shown that Americans are eating larger portions not only out of the home but also at home. Researchers believe because of the large sizes of restaurant meals people are getting a distorted view of what the size size should be. They are then bringing that image into their homes. And consequentially they are eating more than necessary.

In the "submarine sandwich" study (published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association), 75 young men and women ate lunch in the lab once a week for 4 weeks. Each week they were served one of four sizes of deli-style sandwiches. The submarine type sandwiches were 6, 8, 10 or 12 inches long. The portion size of the sandwich significantly influenced the amount consumed. When served the 12-inch sandwich females consumed 12% more calories and males 23% more calories.

The study results show that people are unaware of the amount of food they are eating. People tend to eat what is put in front of them. Consequently, the more food on your plate the more you consume. If you are trying to lose weight it is absolutely necessary that you restrict the amount of food you put on your plate.

Extra calories mean extra weight. When eating out order half a meal. Share a dessert. At home, use smaller plates. When eating at a buffet or salad bar look at all of the food first and then only put on your plate what you really want. Cut down on the amount of food you cook for yourself. Cut the sandwich in half and save half for another day. Eat soup with your half sandwich.

Make a conscious effort to reduce the amount of food on your plate. Be very aware of how much food is in front of you. Make it hard to go for seconds. Everything counts in your quest to lose weight.