Plate size influences childhood obesity

Plate size is everything, it seems, when it comes to the fight against childhood obesity.

A new study published in the journal Pediatrics showed that more calories were consumed and larger portions were served to children when they had bigger plates.

As high-calorie and high-sugar foods increase, other studies have shown that plate sizes have also increased. Figures show that one in three U.S. kids are now defined as overweight or obese, sparking researchers at Temple University to study how effective shrinking plate sizes could be in keeping appetites in check, TIME Magazine reported.

The researchers focused the study on two classes of first-graders at a private school in north Philadelphia. Over eight days, the 42 students helped themselves to a buffet set up by the researchers.

The kids served themselves 90 calories more on days when they used bigger dishes, the study found.