When you go into a restaurant, you probably give some thought to whether you’re ordering a small, regular or large sandwich.
That makes sense. With widening waistlines across the land, many of us want to make a health-conscious choice. But are we really getting a small portion when we order a small sandwich?
Well, that depends.
University of Michigan marketing professor Aradhna Krishna has studied how labels impact how much we eat. In one experiment, she gave people cookies that were labeled either medium or large, and then measured how much they ate.
The catch? The cookies were identical in size.
What happened? You guessed it. People ate more cookies when they were labeled “medium.” Rather than trust what their stomachs were telling them, in other words, people went by the label.