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Low Calorie Menus Making Us Fatter

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Steve Everts/ThinkStock
We have all seen those ‘healthier choice’ sections on restaurant menus, where they group together their lighter calorie fare on the premise of making it easier to pick less fattening selections. According to a study in the Journal Of Consumer Research it’s a major flop. Turns out people tend to use that section to know what not to order.

“Because most restaurant menus are quite complex—offering numerous dishes composed of multiple ingredients—diners try to simplify their decision. People have come to expect low-calorie food to taste bad or not fill them up,” write authors Jeffrey R. Parker (Georgia State University) and Donald R. Lehmann (Columbia University).

“We propose that by calorie organizing a menu, restaurants make it easier for people to use the general ‘low-calorie’ label to dismiss all low-calorie options early in the decision process.”

Somewhere former NYC Mayor Bloomberg gnashes his teeth. Read more about how they did the study here.

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