Smaller Bites Fill You Up Faster, Study Suggests

by Chris Curley on July 13, 2012

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Cutting your food into smaller pieces before you eat it may make you feel fuller afterwards, WebMD reported July 10.

When college students ate a bagel with cream cheese cut up into four pieces, they felt fuller for longer than students who ate a whole bagel with cream cheese, researchers led by Devina Wadhera of Arizona State University found. The group that ate the cut-up bagel not only consumed slightly less, but also ate less of a free meal offered later than the whole-bagel group, the study shows.

The simple act of cutting your food up could be a legitimate approach to cutting calories and losing weight. A previous rodent study by the same group found similar results, with the rats preferring — and working harder for — a reward where the pieces of food were more numerous even though they were offered two equal portions.

“Perhaps cutting up foods into multiple, bite-sized pieces may perceptually look like more and therefore elicit greater satiation than a single-piece food portion,” the study authors suggest.

The research will be presented at the annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior (SSIB).

(Photo © Sushi-ina via Flickr)