Bigger bowls make kids want more food
Washington – Bigger dishes can cause adults to serve and consume more food, and the same thing apply to kids who also become vulnerable to this bowl-size bias, a new study has revealed.
Researchers Brian Wansink, Koert van Ittersum, and Collin Payne found that children will not only ask for more food to fill larger bowls—they’ll also eat 52 percent more.
To examine how bowl-size impacts the amount of food kids request, researchers served 69 preschoolers a familiar beloved breakfast—sugary cereal—in either small 8-oz bowls or large 16-oz bowls.
Adults poured the sweetened cereal and milk in small increments, continually asking “Is that enough or do you want more?” until the kids indicated that they were satisfied with the amount served. No consumption was allowed in this study.
Results showed that when using the bigger bowl, kids requested 87 percent more cereal—regardless of their age, gender, and BMI.
Based on these findings, decreasing the size of plates and bowls may be an easy way to prevent kids from over-consuming.
Having a separate set of smaller dishware for children may be a simple solution for caregivers who are concerned about their kids’ caloric intake.