Trusted local news leader for Kingman, Arizona & Mohave County
Mon, Jan. 20

Where you eat makes a difference

Dining in can save money and calories!

A study at the Tufts University Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging in Boston found a correlation between dining out and higher body fat percentages. Research found that the more people ate out, the more calories they consumed daily. Why do you think that is? One reason is average American serving sizes have increased over the past two decades. The problem is our eyes and appetites have adapted to the larger portions.

Here are some facts recently reported about the increasing portions:

• Restaurant dinner plates typically used to be 10 inches in diameter. Now dishes tend to be 12 to 13 inches across. Also, many restaurants serve individual servings on large plates.

• Fast-food restaurants first introduced many of their products at one size. The sizes first introduced were the same or smaller than the smallest sizes carried today. Now, many places offer "super" size options and don't offer some items available in "small."

• Cars are being made with larger cup-holders to accommodate larger drink sizes.

• Some cookbooks have adjusted portion sizes of recipes to be larger than portion sizes for the same recipes in previously published editions.

• Bargain hunting for food is costing us inches on our waistlines.

Studies also found that the intake of fat and sodium is higher, and fiber consumption is lower in people who eat out often. What is the big deal about fiber?

Researchers at the University of California (Davis) published information that indicates that fiber content in a meal boosts feelings of fullness and increases levels of a hormone that is associated with satiety (fullness).

Research has shown that the consumption of fatty foods results in the release of the hormone cholecystokinin in the small intestine. It is thought that this hormone may be the chemical messenger that signals the brain that the body is full. Researchers find that fiber can trigger this same signaling mechanism.

If you are uncertain about which foods are high in fiber, please call me at 753-5066 or stop by 1848 Hope Ave. in Kingman and I can give you a list.

A test group of men and women were given three different breakfast meals (either low-fiber and low-fat; or high-fiber and low-fat; or low-fiber and high-fat). Blood samples were drawn to measure hormone levels of cholecystokinin.

They found that the release of this hormone correlated with feelings of satiety reported by the subject. Results indicated that the addition of fiber to a meal can increase a person's feeling of being full, particularly in women. With men, the two low-fat meals caused greater feelings of satiety. It appears that the feeling of satiety is due to the volume of fiber, and due to the promotion of the release of cholecystokinin.

So make an effort to prepare your own meals and try adding some fiber-rich foods. It can save you pounds and big bucks! Thank you for reading Diet Center's Tip of the Week.

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