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Smaller Snack Portions Just as Satisfying


WebMD News from HealthDay

By Robert Preidt

HealthDay Reporter

THURSDAY, Jan. 31 (HealthDay News) -- Eating a smaller portion of chocolate and other snack foods will satisfy you just as much as a larger portion, according to a new study.

The study included more than 100 adults who were given small and large portions of the same snack. Those who ate large portions consumed 77 percent more calories than those who ate small portions.

Both groups, however, reported significantly lower snack cravings 15 minutes after eating, according to the study, which was published in the January issue of the journal Food, Quality and Preference.

"This research supports the notion that eating for pleasure -- hedonic hunger -- is driven more by the availability of foods instead of the food already eaten," study co-author Brian Wansink, a professor of economics at Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., said in a university news release.

"Just a bit satisfies, not magnifies, hunger and craving tendencies for snacks," he added.

The findings could help people trying to shed pounds or prevent weight gain.

"If you want to control your weight, here's the secret: Take a bite and wait. After 15 minutes all you'll remember in your head and in your stomach is that you had a tasty snack," Wansink said.

More information

The U.S. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases has more about portion sizes.

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