The Economist’s Weight-Loss Strategy
Astudy on people’s waistlines i n the U. S. found that our food intake has increased since the 1970s, while the energy we consume every day maintained at a steady level. Daily calorie intake increases by 300 kilojoules every decade. Obesity has now become a major problem that troubles people’s lives.
Economists found that bigger plates, bowls, and even pantries increase our food intake.
In a test, researchers put popcorn, which had been stored for 14 days in buckets of various sizes and then gave them to the audience at a cinema. It was found that the audience who took the bigger bucket ate 38% more expired popcorn than other people. It tells us that people decide to stop eating according to external information ( i. e. my plate is empty) rather than internal information ( I am full).
In another test, scientists randomly gave 10 weightloss strategies to participants and found two strategies most effective: participants who used smaller plates ( dia< 25cm) to eat lost an average of 0.9kg within one month; experimenters who were not allowed to watch TV while eating lost 0.7kg on average in one month.
Brian Wansink, director of the Cornell University Food and Brand Lab, found that people consumed 28%~ 55% more food while they watch sad movies; people eat less with softer lighting and soft jazz ballads playing; lower contrast between the color of the plate and color of the food makes people consume
22%~32% more food.
Apart from appetite control, keeping fit is another key to losing weight. Some economists tried to help people to keep