The Last Supper … A Sign of Supersizing?

Brian Wansink, one of our favorites and the author of Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think, teamed up with his brother, Craig Wansink, to conduct a study recently. Only his brother isn’t a fellow scholar of eating behavior; he’s a professor of religious studies at Virginia Wesleyan College. The two cross-pollinated their specialties to take a look at portion sizes as represented by 52 paintings of the Last Supper over the past millennium.

wansinkThe result? According to the Wansinks’ study, as reported in the International Journal of Obesity, expanding portion sizes are not a new phenomenon. In the paintings the brothers studied, main courses in the feast grew by 69%, plate size by 66%, and bread size by 23%.

Americans, though, seem particularly prone to supersizing our portions. An average meal in France is 25 percent smaller than one in America, according to a 2003 University of Pennsylvania comparison. The study also found that a typical carton of yogurt sold in Philadelphia was 82 percent larger than one offered in Paris, and a soft drink was 52 percent larger. In Japan, foods also come in smaller sizes and are often eaten out of bowls, rather than large plates or platters.

Here are three things you can do to stop portions from expanding on your table:

1)     Envision It. Measure out healthy portions of foods you commonly eat in your own tableware. What does a half cup of pasta look like in your bowl? What does a tablespoon of peanuts look like in a small dish? Once you have a visual snapshot, you won’t have to continually measure to know you’re getting a healthy portion size.

2)     Be Mindful. It’s natural to feel like you’re being deprived when your portion sizes are smaller than you’re used to. But when we shift our attitude to fully reveling in what’s in front of us, we end up even more satisfied than if we ate a larger amount while being less mindful.

3)     Fill Up. If you’re concerned you’ll still be hungry after eating less food, make an effort to include fiber-rich foods—like lentils, vegetables and whole grains—which keep us full longer.

Share The Love!

NOURISH-EVOLUTION-recipe-download-img

Lorem ipsum dolor

Consectetur Adipiscing Elit, Sed Do Eiusmod Tempor Incididunt Ut Labore Et Dolore Magna Aliqua.

Hey there ... I'm Lia Huber

Hey there ... I'm Lia Huber

My mission is to inspire and equip you to live a richer life through real food by becoming a more competent, confident home cook.


I’m the author of Nourished: A Memoir of Food, Faith, and Enduring Love, founder and CEO of Nourish Evolution, and the creator of Cook the Seasons, Home Cooking School, and the Real Food Reset, and I empower intentional women to cook in a way that brings them (and their families) joy, health, and ease.

Making the shift from processed food to real food doesn’t happen overnight. It’s an evolution that occurs over time, with effort, intention, and belief. And it will change the course of your life. Are you ready to take the first step? I’m so glad you’re here … and I’m honored to be with you on the journey to becoming nourished!

Nourish Evolution video

Watch the video and download the customized action plan to take the first step on your nourish evolution now.

Watch the video and download my customized action plan to take the first step on your nourish evolution now.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE:

Rustic Crispy Chicken Cutlets

These cutlets are a simplified version of chicken Milanese, using a flavorful schmear of Dijon mustard instead of an egg and dredging the chicken in one coating of bread crumbs.

Read More

Sticky-Sweet Sugar Snap Peas

This simple side dish adds Asian flair to any meal. These sugar snaps are delicious hot out of the pan or at room temperature for lunch the next day. Mirin is a sweet wine made from glutinous rice that’s a staple of Japanese cooking.

Read More

Radish and Feta Flatbread

This is based on a bar snack Alison spotted while, well, sitting at the counter at a local wine bar watching the bartender turn out quick pizza-like snacks with lavash (a type of Armenian flatbread), a variety of toppings and a toaster oven.

Read More

Privacy Policy

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Proin vel ullamcorper nisl. Praesent tincidunt nibh sit amet sagittis porttitor. Class aptent taciti sociosqu ad litora torquent per conubia nostra, per inceptos himenaeos. Maecenas euismod ullamcorper libero, quis sollicitudin metus ullamcorper et. Curabitur elementum tincidunt fringilla. Vestibulum a ligula vitae dui rutrum consectetur non nec quam. Aliquam gravida ornare erat, sit amet lobortis massa sagittis pellentesque. Sed dapibus sed est nec blandit. Curabitur tellus felis, porttitor et odio nec, elementum aliquam sem. Nam ut dui enim. Nullam ac ornare odio. Nullam pulvinar purus porttitor dolor gravida lobortis.

Ut pulvinar pulvinar neque ut euismod. In tempor placerat risus, ut tempus eros congue vel. Ut venenatis ultricies magna, porta hendrerit dolor posuere ut. In sit amet tempor ante, eget lacinia ipsum. Nunc in condimentum ex. Sed sit amet urna ultrices, euismod urna vitae, sollicitudin orci. Quisque non justo convallis, scelerisque nulla sit amet, tincidunt augue.