Effects of energy content and energy density of pre-portioned entrées on energy intake.Obesity (Silver Spring) 2012; 20(10):2010-8O
Pre-portioned entrées are commonly consumed to help control portion size and limit energy intake. The influence of entrée characteristics on energy intake, however, has not been well studied. We determined how the effects of energy content and energy density (ED, kcal/g) of pre-portioned entrées combine to influence daily energy intake. In a crossover design, 68 non-dieting adults (28 men and 40 women) were provided with breakfast, lunch, and dinner on 1 day a week for 4 weeks. Each meal included a compulsory, manipulated pre-portioned entrée followed by a variety of unmanipulated discretionary foods that were consumed ad libitum. Across conditions, the entrées were varied in both energy content and ED between a standard level (100%) and a reduced level (64%). Results showed that in men, decreases in the energy content and ED of pre-portioned entrées acted independently and added together to reduce daily energy intake (both P < 0.01). Simultaneously decreasing the energy content and ED reduced total energy intake in men by 16% (445 ± 47 kcal/day; P < 0.0001). In women, the entrée factors also had independent effects on energy intake at breakfast and lunch, but at dinner and for the entire day the effects depended on the interaction of the two factors (P < 0.01). Simultaneously decreasing the energy content and ED reduced daily energy intake in women by 14% (289 ± 35 kcal/day; P < 0.0001). Both the energy content and ED of pre-portioned entrées affect daily energy intake and could influence the effectiveness of such foods for weight management.