It is lunch time. You are starving! You head to your local cafeteria or lunch buffet and pile on the food. The plate looks more colorful with every passing second. It’s also getting heavier. Your eyes are happy, your wallet not so much, but what about your stomach?
A new study published in the International Journal of Obesity found that we consume about 92% of the food we place on our plates. The research was carried out by Brian Wansik and Katherine Abowd, and gives us good news in our fight against food waste. The research shows that we are able to finish almost everything that we put on our plates, and certain factors help us increase this rate.
Eating food without distractions, such as TV or talking, increases this rate to 97%. Eating food that is continuous (or monotone), such as pasta or cereal, also beats the average! These findings are also useful for those wishing to lose weight. Eating salads or steamed vegetables, which are unitary items, decreases consumption to 72%. Being distracted also lowers this rate to 89%.
Food waste on our individual plates is usually 8%, which is extremely lower than the 55-65% consumers waste at home (mainly due to leftovers or forgotten produce in the refrigerator). To learn more about reducing your food waste levels, check out the top problems faced by consumers and their solutions. You can also tap into other useful resources by Dr. Wansik by learning about the Small Plate Movement, discovering your Mindless Eating habits and becoming part of the 92% Clean Plate Club.