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Is color the key to weight loss?

Can colors curb your appetite and help you lose weight? Maybe. Could the color of a plate be a key to weight loss? A recent study says, “Yes.”

New research* suggests that plate colors that contrast with food help people eat less. The study revealed that people put less food on a plate with high contrast. If this is confusing, these graphics will help define contrasts:

Color contrasts of food and plates

Red (food) on a white background (plate) is a high contrast. Red (food) on a brown background (plate) is low contrast. You’ll put less red-sauce pasta on a white plate because it looks like there is more food on the plate.

Furthermore, the colors of the tablecloth may also affect appetite. When the dinner plate contrasted with the tablecloth, the study found that people saw the plate as smaller and ate less. (In the example above, the black and white checkered tablecloth creates a high contrast with the white plate; the brown tablecloth creates a low contrast with the red plate.)

An independent study* by ABC news measured the amount of food that people put on their plates. See the comparison below:

Color plates experiment - Servings in ounces

Three tips for curbing your appetite from Color Matters

1. Here are the worst plate colors for different colors of foods:

The worst plate colors for different kinds of food

(You’ll put more food on these plates.)

2. Use a blue plate. It’s a color that really doesn’t have any taste sensations (unless you’re a kid) and may curb your appetite. Read more at  Color and Appetite Matters.

Blue plates curb appetite


3. Put your food on a plate in the color you detest – or the most garish color - and we’ll bet that affects your appetite.

Garish color can curb appetite

* Source


Color Consultation for Marketing & Branding in the Food Industry

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