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How Plate Sizes Have Increased Your Waistline Over the Years


This morning, after a delicious breakfast of pancakes made by my husband, we were cleaning up the breakfast dishes, and one of the dishes slipped out of my hands and crashed to the floor, shattering into roughly 9,000 little pieces. Now we’re down to five plates.

It got me thinking about plate size and portion size. Did you know that in 1960, plates were 8½” to 9” in diameter – about the size of today’s side plates. They held about 800 calories. In 1980, plates were 10”, and they held about 1,000 calories. In 2000, plates were 11” and held about 1,600 calories.

Then, in 2009, the last data available, the plate size grew to 12”, holding about 1,900 calories. So plate sizes have grown by 3”, and they hold a larger portion size with more than double the calories than they did in 1960.

That’s a shocking increase in portion size – and a lot of extra calories to be ingesting over the course of a year. It definitely adds up.

Keep that in mind the next time you are deciding on your portion size. Don’t starve yourself, but don’t let your plate size convince you that you need more food than you do.

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