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Cutting the portion size of french fries in half reduces french fry intake by 75 calories
Tuesday, September 07, 2010 10:27 am Email this article
When the portion size of french fries was cut in half, from 3.1 ounces (88 grams) to 1.6 ounces (44 grams), in an all-you- can-eat university dining facility, students consumed about 75 fewer calories from french fries than they did when the larger portion size was served. Calories Consumed
Calories consumed: 250 calories vs 175 calories
When offering the larger portion size french fries, the average diner consumed 74 grams of french fries, or about 250 calories worth.
When they cut the portion size in half, the average diner consumed 52 grams of french fries, or about 175 calories worth, a reduction of 75 calories.
Calorie content: 4 fries equals 15 grams equals 50 calories
In this study, 4 french fries was about 15 grams, which contained about 50 calories.
Practical Advise: Order a small
The obvious lesson to be learned from this study and many other studies on portion size is: Order the small size.
Comment: Larger portion sizes may be the number one factor that has caused the obesity epidemic over the past 30 years
My guess is that larger portion sizes is the probably the number one factor in causing the obesity epidemic over the past 30 years.
One paper found that the portion size of everything they looked at had increased in size over the past 30 years except for a slice of white bread.
Comment: In the 1960’s and 70’s, there was only one size french fry, and a large Coke was 16-ounces
I grew up in the 1960’s and 1970’s, graduating from college in 1980.
When I was growing up, there was only one size french fry at hamburger places like McDonald’s.
It was the equivalent of a small order of french fries today.
The largest size Coke you could get was a 16-ounce bottle.
Larger Portions Cause People to Eat More
People consume more when they are given larger portions
Studies show that when children are very young—up to the age of 3 or 4—they only eat a certain amount regardless of how much food you put in front of them.
But once they get older than this, putting more food in front of them causes them to eat more.
Therefore, for the sake of your health and your weight, order the smallest size french fry or Coke or whatever it may be when you order.
If you are still hungry when you get done, you can order another small order of whatever it is you are eating, but in many cases, the small will be enough.
Freedman M, Brochado C. Reducing portion size reduces food intake and plate waste. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2010 Sep, 18(9):1864-66.
AUTHOR’S CONTACT INFORMATION
Marjorie R. Freedman
Nutrition, Food Science and Packaging Department
San Jose State University
San Jose, California, USA
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