The Super Bowl and supersize bowls

Football fans and foodAmericans are fat. More than two-thirds of adults in the U.S. are overweight or obese.

Big portions are a big reason. Drinks, snacks and meals have all gotten bigger over time. As portion sizes increase, people get fatter.

Our perceptions play a role. An experiment conducted at a Super Bowl party found that people who were served snacks from large (four-liter) bowls ate 56 percent more than people served from smaller (two-liter) bowls. The larger bowl made portions look smaller. If you don’t want your friends to overeat, use smaller bowls at your Super Bowl party.

The Small Plate Movement promotes using 10-inch plates instead of 12-inch plates. People eat 22 percent fewer calories from a smaller plate, without affecting their perceived fullness or satisfaction.

But the market doesn’t help reduce portion size. [Read more…]