If I go to my school cafeteria and ask them for one of the hot plate items for lunch, I will get the exact same amount of food as the 6’3 high football player or the 40kg girl next to me. The question that arises in my mind as a result is: how are serving sizes determined? Whose serving sizes are they? My theory is that you will eat whatever is in your plate, and if portion sizes get bigger, our desires to eat will also increase. Have you noticed the significant differences in portion sizes between the U.S and Canada? It feels like you order what you think is medium in Canada and get an Xtra large in the U.S! What’s up with that?
A short-term study done by http://www.cdc.gov/ indicates that people eat more when they are confronted with larger portion sizes. The problem is many people confuse portion size with serving size, which is a standardized unit of measuring foods—for example, a cup or ounce—used in dietary guidance, such as the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Portion size is the amount offered to a person in a restaurant, the amount offered in the packaging of prepared foods, or the amount a person chooses to put on his or her plate. For example, bagels or muffins are often sold in sizes that constitute at least 2 servings, but consumers often eat the whole thing, thinking that they have eaten 1 serving. They do not realize that they have selected a large portion size that was more than 1 serving. It is a known fact that many processed foods that are packaged as a single serving actually contain two or more servings.
Also, remember those mini Pepsi Cans? I loved those portions. But ironically, they were always priced above the standard Pepsi Cans. I get a long lecture from my Mom when I choose to eat half of anything–that’s a social dilemma I encounter: “not finishing my food”. I think its about time we step up and place an order for “3/4 burger and a 1/4 can pop”.