Bowl Size may Affect Portion Control for Kids

First Posted: Nov 20, 2013 07:03 PM EST

The size of a dish may actually determine how much food is consumed. According to researchers Brian Wansink, Koert van Ittersum and Collin Payne of Cornell University, they found that children would not only ask for more food based on a larger bowl-but they were more likely to eat 52 percent more, as well.

In order to examine how bowl-size may impact the amount of foods children request, researchers studied 69 preschoolers that were served a breakfast of sugary cereal in either a small 8-oz bowl or a large 16-oz bowl. Adults involved in the study asked the participants if they had enough or were satisfied after consumption of the meal. However, results showed that up to 87 percent of children eating from the bigger bowl were likely to request more, regardless of age, gender or BMI.

Background information from the study notes that bowl size may have a massive effect on how much food kids consume or want to consume. To help them with portion control, it may be easier to give smaller dishes in the hopes that they will eat a smaller portion as opposed to them picking it on their own.

In a second study researchers took the same idea and looked at 18 kids ages 6 to 10. However, this time researchers used secret scales embedded within the tables to help weigh each cereal portion before and after kids ate

Results showed that 69 percent ate more cereal and milk when using larger bowls and almost 52 percent ate more. Kids with larger bowls also wasted about 14 percent or more food than others with small bowls.

More information regarding the study can be found here

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