It's January again, which means many people are trying to lose weight. Previous studies have shown that you are likely to eat more if you are dining with an overweight companion. But what if you are at a restaurant and it's your server who is overweight? In this study, the researchers observed almost 500 interactions between diners and servers in 60 restaurants. They found that diners waited on by someone a high BMI (body mass index) were four times more likely to order dessert, and ordered nearly 20% more alcoholic drinks. Something to keep in mind if you made any weight loss resolutions this year!
The Waiter’s Weight: Does a Server’s BMI Relate to How Much Food Diners Order? "Does the weight of a server have an influence on how much food diners order in the high-involvement environment of a restaurant? If people are paying for a full meal, this has implications for consumers, restaurants, and public health. To investigate this, 497 interactions between diners and servers were observed in 60 different full-service restaurants. Diners ordered significantly more items when served by heavy wait staff with high body mass indexes (BMI; p < .001) compared with wait staff with low body mass indexes. Specifically, they were four times as likely to order desserts (p < .01), and they ordered 17.65% more alcoholic drinks (p < .01). These findings provide valuable evidence in recent lawsuits against weight discrimination, and it suggests to consumers who decide what they will and will not order at a restaurant—such as a salad appetizer, no dessert, and one drink—than to decide when the waiter arrives." Related content: Dining with an overweight person makes you eat more.Want to lose weight? Try playing Tetris. No, really.Can overweight people blame their tastebuds?