Shrink your plate to shrink your stomach: Research on anchoring and the social effects on eating


Some amazing studies have been conducted by Brian Wansink, professor at Cornell University and Author of the book, “Mindless Eating.” 

His famous, “endless soup” bowl study is linked below and illustrates the role of visual cues in hunger.

His equally famous “chinese buffet” study regarding plate size is truly incredible. This can be likened to Daniel Kahnman’s research on cognitive anchoring, however Wansink refers to a large plate as acting as a “visual anchor.

Rat Park: An incredibly interesting experiment on the social and cognitive factors of addiction

Read and document the above study (click the picture) on societal factors of addiction! It’s really incredible! But makes intuitive sense!

After reading, answer the following questions:

  1. What social psychology principals come to mind while contemplating the results of the study?
  2. What other study regarding cognitive factors (from our cognitive unit of study) corroborates or reinforces the theories regarding addiction inherent in the illustrated study? (cite a specific study).
  3. Other thoughts/ideas/musings/conclusions?

Healthy Mind, Healthy Body

A Healthy Mind can often lead to a healthy body and certainly vice versa due to the bi-directionality of wellness. 

Your task is to understand the cognitive, social and Physiological factors of obesity and then design a prevention program grounded in psychological rationale and research. 

Your Learning Activity guide is linked below:

Developing a Treatment Program for Obesity