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Recommendations Summary

Adult Weight Management (AWM) Portion Control

Click here to see the explanation of recommendation ratings (Strong, Fair, Weak, Consensus, Insufficient Evidence) and labels (Imperative or Conditional). To see more detail on the evidence from which the following recommendations were drawn, use the hyperlinks in the Supporting Evidence Section below.

  • Recommendation(s)

    AWM: Portion Control

    Portion control should be included as part of a comprehensive weight management program. Portion control at meals and snacks results in reduced energy intake and weight loss.

    Rating: Fair

    • Risks/Harms of Implementing This Recommendation


    • Conditions of Application

      No conditions specified.

    • Potential Costs Associated with Application


    • Recommendation Narrative

    • Two positive-quality RCTs have shown that portion control results in weight loss (Hannum et al, 2004; Waller et al, 2004)
    • Two neutral-quality RCTs and 3 nonrandomized clinical trials (two positive-quality, one-neutral quality) demonstrate that as portion size increases at a meal, energy intake also increases (Levitsky and Youn, 2004; Rolls et al, 2002; Rolls et al, 2004; Wansink and Kim, 2005, Wansink et al, 2005)
    • Two positive-quality nonrandomized clinical trials have shown that increased energy intake at one meal does not result in decreased energy intake at subsequent meals, resulting in significant increases in daily energy intake (Kral et al, 2004; Rolls et al, 2004)
  • Recommendation Strength Rationale

    • Conclusion statement given a Grade III
    • Consistent findings among a variety of study designs

  • Minority Opinions

    Consensus reached.