"In this research we examined the influence of small versus large bite-sizes on overall quantity of food consumed," write authors Arul Mishra, Himanshu Mishra, and Tamara M. Masters (all University of Utah, Salt Lake City).
The authors conducted a field study in a popular Italian restaurant. They used two sizes of forks to manipulate bite sizes and found that diners who used large forks ate less than those with small forks.
The authors then began to investigate why this finding seems to contradict earlier research on portion sizes. "We observe that diners visit the restaurant with a well-defined goal of satiating their hunger and because of this well-defined goal they are willing to invest effort and resources to satiate their hunger goal," the authors write. Diners can satisfy their hunger by choosing, eating, and paying for their food—all of which involve effort.
"The fork size provided the diners with a means to observe their goal progress," the authors explain. "The physiological feedback of feeling full or the satiation signal comes with a time lag. In its absence diners focus on the visual cue of whether they are making any dent on the food on their plate to assess goal progress."
The authors tested this conclusion by varying the quantities of food. They found that when the initial quantity of food was more (a well-loaded plate) diners with small forks ate significantly more than those with large forks. When customers were served small servings, the fork size did not affect the amount of food. Interestingly, in a lab experiment the authors found that participants with small forks consumed less than those with large forks. The authors believe that the participants did not have the same goals of satiating hunger as the restaurant customers did.
To avoid overeating, the authors suggest consumers learn to better understand hunger cues. "People do not have clear internal cues about the appropriate quantity to consume," the authors write. "They allow external cues, such as fork size, to determine the amount they should consume."
Arul Mishra, Himanshu Mishra, and Tamara M. Masters. "The Influence of Bite-size Quantity on Food Consumed: A Field Study."Journal of Consumer Research: February 2011 (published online June 2, 2011).
Mary-Ann Twist | EurekAlert!
Diagnoses: When Are Several Opinions Better Than One?
19.07.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung
High in calories and low in nutrients when adolescents share pictures of food online
07.04.2016 | University of Gothenburg
Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.
This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...
Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion
Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...
Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.
"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...
In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.
A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...
By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.
"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...
14.10.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
12.10.2016 | Event News
26.10.2016 | Materials Sciences
26.10.2016 | Health and Medicine
26.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy