Loughborough University
James et al. Revised-clean.pdf (309.3 kB)
Download file

Eating with a smaller spoon decreases bite size, eating rate and ad libitum food intake in healthy young males

Download (309.3 kB)
journal contribution
posted on 2019-03-08, 10:06 authored by Lewis JamesLewis James, Tyler Maher, Stuart J.H. Biddle, David R. Broom
There is a paucity of data examining the effect of cutlery size on the microstructure of within-meal eating behaviour or food intake. Therefore, the present studies examined how manipulation of spoon size influenced these eating behaviour measures in lean young men. In study one, subjects ate a semi-solid porridge breakfast ad libitum, until satiation. In study two, subjects ate a standardised amount of porridge, with mean bite size and mean eating rate covertly measured by observation through a one-way mirror. Both studies involved subjects completing a familiarisation visit and two experimental visits, where they ate with a teaspoon (SMALL) or dessert spoon (LARGE), in randomised order. Subjective appetite measures (hunger, fullness, desire to eat and satisfaction) were made before and after meals. In study one, subjects ate 8 % less food when they ate with the SMALL spoon (SMALL 532 (SD 189) g; LARGE 575 (SD 227) g; P=0·006). In study two, mean bite size (SMALL 10·5 (SD 1·3) g; LARGE 13·7 (SD 2·6) g; P<0·001) and eating rate (SMALL 92 (SD 25) g/min; LARGE 108 (SD 29) g/min; P<0·001) were reduced in the SMALL condition. There were no condition or interaction effects for subjective appetite measures. These results suggest that eating with a small spoon decreases ad libitum food intake, possibly via a cascade of effects on within-meal eating microstructure. A small spoon might be a practical strategy for decreasing bite size and eating rate, likely increasing oral processing, and subsequently decreasing food intake, at least in lean young men.



  • Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences

Published in

British Journal of Nutrition






830 - 837


JAMES, L.J. ... et al, 2018. Eating with a smaller spoon decreases bite size, eating rate and ad libitum food intake in healthy young males. British Journal of Nutrition, 120 (7), pp.830-837.


Cambridge University Press (CUP) © The Authors


  • AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Acceptance date


Publication date



This article has been published in a revised form in British Journal of Nutrition https://doi.org/10.1017/S0007114518002246. This version is free to view and download for private research and study only. Not for re-distribution, re-sale or use in derivative works. © The Authors.






  • en