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Open AccessArticle

Right Sizing: Sensory-Based Product Design Is a Promising Strategy to Nudge Consumers toward Healthier Portions

Nestlé Institute of Material Sciences, Nestlé Research, Vers-chez-les-Blanc, 1000 Lausanne 26, Switzerland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2018, 10(10), 1544;
Received: 21 August 2018 / Revised: 16 October 2018 / Accepted: 17 October 2018 / Published: 19 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Food Portion Size in Relation to Diet and Health)
Research has shown that people consume more food when offered larger portions, and that reducing exposure to large food portions and packages could decrease the average daily energy consumed. In this context, our aim is to develop strategies to promote healthier eating behaviors by reducing portion selection and intake. The present research investigates the impact of different visual attributes of foods on quantity perception and portion selection. In the first study, we tested whether modifying the shape of a familiar food influenced the ideal portion size in adults. In the second study, we assessed the impact of shape, number of units, size, and color variety on a perceived quantity for a familiar multiunit product in children. Participants (N1 = 70 adults, N2 = 62 children) completed different picture-based computer tasks. As hypothesized: (1) adults selected a smaller ideal portion size for an elongated product than for wider and thicker shapes, and (2) children’s perception of food quantity was primarily driven by number of pieces, with smaller effects of size and elongation. Perceived quantity was not influenced by color variety. These findings suggest that it may be possible to reduce the size of food portions without negatively impacting perceived quantity, and to provide opportunities to nudge consumers towards smaller portions while maintaining satisfaction. View Full-Text
Keywords: sensory; food design; portion size; nudging; behavior; food choice sensory; food design; portion size; nudging; behavior; food choice
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Labbe, D.; R. Fries, L.; Ferrage, A.; Lenfant, F.; Godinot, N.; Martin, N. Right Sizing: Sensory-Based Product Design Is a Promising Strategy to Nudge Consumers toward Healthier Portions. Nutrients 2018, 10, 1544.

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