Pour Smart: The Simple Glass Trick to Control Your Drink Size

Drinking habits can be significantly influenced by the size and shape of the glass you use, as well as whether you hold it while pouring. Research conducted by scientists at Cornell and Iowa State University has found that glass size and color, as well as the act of holding a glass while pouring, can affect how much you serve yourself. This knowledge can be extremely helpful if you’re trying to limit your alcohol intake or simply want to be more mindful of serving sizes.

Size Matters: Wider Glasses Increase Consumption

The research study involved wine and concluded that, on average, people serve themselves around 12% more liquid when using wider glasses. This means that if you’re aiming to control your consumption to some degree, opting for a narrow glass may be the best choice. Still not convinced? Let’s think of some other examples: when you eat from a small plate, you’ll probably serve yourself less compared to a large plate, even if you’re not consciously thinking about portion sizes. The same principle applies to glasses – a narrower glass will provide less space for alcohol, therefore limiting the quantity you’ll drink.

Pouring While Holding the Glass Leads to Overpouring

Another factor that contributes to overpouring is whether you hold the glass while you pour. The study found that when participants held their glasses as they poured, they served themselves approximately 12% more than if they had left the glass on a counter or table. This might be because when you hold a glass, you’re unable to see the liquid inside as clearly, making it challenging to determine just how much you’ve poured.

To avoid pouring larger servings of alcohol, it’s best to place the glass on a table before pouring and be mindful of the amount you’re serving. Additionally, try pouring slowly and take time to observe how much alcohol fills the glass.

Matching Glass and Drink Colors Increase Consumption

The study also discovered that when the color of the glass matched the color of the drink, people served themselves about 9% more wine. This may be due to the fact that it’s harder to accurately gauge the amount of liquid in a glass when the colors are similar.

In order to minimize this effect, choose a glass that has a contrasting color to the drink you’re pouring. For example, if you’re pouring red wine, opt for a clear, transparent wine glass, which will help you better differentiate the drink’s color and allow for more accurate pouring.

Tips for Limiting Alcohol Intake

If you’re trying to cut back on your alcohol consumption or just want to be more mindful of the amount you’re drinking, keep these tips in mind:

  1. Choose narrow glasses – A narrower glass allows for less space to pour alcohol, thus encouraging smaller serving sizes.
  2. Place the glass on a table before pouring – This enables you to see the liquid inside more clearly and be more accurate in determining the amount you’re pouring.
  3. Avoid matching the drink and glass colors – Choose a glass with a contrasting color to your drink to make it easier to see the quantity you’re pouring.
  4. Pour slowly and mindfully – Take your time pouring your drink, being conscious of the amount that fills the glass.

Remember, understanding the effect of glass size, color, and how you pour your drinks can play a significant role in controlling your alcohol intake. Implementing these tips and being mindful of your drinking habits can help you enjoy your beverages responsibly and maintain a healthy lifestyle.