Downsize Your Dishes and Yourself | Reader's Digest

Downsize Your Dishes and Yourself

This simple trick can be the key to controlling your portion size.

By Cynthia Dermody from Reader's Digest | November 2006

Are smaller dishes the key to weight loss?

Maybe, says food psychologist Brian Wansink, author of Mindless Eating. Wansink held an ice cream social for 85 food experts and gave them a small or large bowl and a small or large scoop. Even these pros, who are supposed to know better, served 31% more ice cream (that’s 127 more calories) in the large bowl and 15% more (60 calories) from the big spoon.

Researchers Andrew Geier and Tim Zintz conducted Similar experiments at the University of Pennsylvania, thinking that if students were given a small ice cream scoop, they’d take more. But the students took only one scoop, regardless of size.

The bottom line: Downsize your dinnerware. Eat on 8-inch plates instead of the usual 10-inch ones. And divide fattening items like gravy and salad dressing into small bowls with small spoons. To load up on low-calorie veggies, place them in a big bowl with a large serving spoon and then dig in.

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