Last Thursday I was watching the BBC news and it was full of stories about obesity, especially childhood obesity, and how the government is struggling to tackle the problem.
Within a few hours I was sitting down for a birthday meal in Eleven and staring in disbelief at the size of the chicken wraps my two daughters were about to tackle.
They were huge and nowhere near the size of wraps I make at home. If they didn’t eat them I was going to take them home and use them as a pillow.
Why do they make the portions so big? These wraps were easily two portions in size and bearing in mind that the four chicken strips they had for starters were basically a meal without veg then theywere trying to eat their way through three portions of food at one sitting. Is it any wonder they struggled to eat dessert?
I know that going out to eat is meant to be a special treat but kids are doing it more than ever before so they are starting to see huge portions as the norm.
Restaurants should be setting the example by giving sensible portions because if any of your kids asked for three large pakoras before dinner you would chase them out the kitchen.
It’s not just restaurants. Twenty years ago you could eat a muffin in one or two bites whereas nowadays they are as big as my fist.
Back then they would have had a dollop of water icing on top yet now they are full of chocolate or caramel and have thick icing whipped up like a 99 cone.
Cookies are now the size of a Frisbee and even cups of coffee have turned into half pints of latte.
Give it ten years and cafes will be serving buckets of latte that sit on plates which are actually made of cookies.
We can introduce a sugar taxes and other initiatives but attitudes towards eating needs to change.
Size isn’t everything, as I am regularly told, so why not try and change some simple things like encouraging the use of ‘doggy bags’ in restaurants before people start eating.
If your meal looks huge and you feel you have no chance of eating it in one go then why can’t you be allowed to cut it in half and take the rest home. You paid for the meal. You don’t have to leave it on the plate to be dumped. Take it home and feed the family.
It will probably last them a week and will save you money and cut your calorie intake dramatically.
Do it today and don’t let waste go to waist!