Research published in the journal ‘Paediatrics’, conducted by the researchers of the Temple university’ Centre for Obesity Research and Education in Philadelphia states that obese children are likely to eat less food and cut down on calories if the food is served in smaller plates and bowls.
Childhood obesity is increasing every year, according to the Centre of Disease Control, obesity has nearly doubled in children and tripled in adolescents in the last 30 years. This continues into adolescence and adulthood increasing the risks of several weight related health issues such as diabetes and cardiovascular threats.
Earlier studies showed that smaller bowls and spoons helped to control the amount of food intake in adults. Scientists applied the same strategy of using small plates on children to fight obesity. They studied 42 first-grade students and found that when served in adult-size dinner plates they self-served larger portions of food and consumed 50 percent extra calories. Results also showed that 80 percent of children served 90 calories more at lunch when served in adult-size plates. This concludes that the smaller plates can control the portion size and in turn reduce the calorie intake controlling excess weight gain.
Balanced and timely meals in appropriate portions, to meet their nutritional needs, along with regular exercise are important factors in limiting the potential health problems related to obesity.
Parents and child care providers play a vital role in keeping obesity in check. Children who are above the ideal weight for their age by 20 per cent require special attention and care. Kids Nutrition Specialists training conducted by the National Exercise and Sports Trainers Association (NESTA) provides necessary guidelines for controlling obesity in children of all ages.