Ever ended up buying more food and drink than you intended? How did it happen? Our guest Heather Peace of Food Standards Scotland explains how ‘upsizing’ works.
This is a guest post by Heather Peace. All views expressed are Heather’s own and not necessarily shared by Which?.
We’ve all been there. One minute you’re grabbing a quick little something to eat or drink, the next you’ve come away with the large version of what you wanted, or lots of extras!
‘Upsizing’ or ‘upselling’ – going large, adding a side, making it a meal or adding extras – can easily lead to us eating and drinking extra calories.
We often see these offers as good value, but there is another ‘cost’ to consider – extra calories can, of course, lead to weight gain.
An upsized you?
At Food Standards Scotland, we recently launched a healthy eating campaign encouraging people in Scotland to say ‘no’ to upsized food and drink offers.
The example below would result in an extra 1500 calories:
🍔 Upsizing from a small cheeseburger meal to a large cheeseburger meal and adding a regular side of onion rings and…
🍔 Switching from a small latte to a large, and adding a chocolate brownie
If you were to do this each week for a year you could end up 10lbs heavier!
Adding starters and sides can add a lot of extra calories. For example, a portion of nachos could add more than 800 calories, and a side of garlic bread with cheese more than 500 calories.
These offers are common in restaurants, cafes and cinemas, but saying ‘yes’ to them can risk tipping the scales into overweight and obesity. This is an additional cost you might not want to say yes to.
Time to say no to upsizing
Our consumer research shows almost three-quarters of people in Scotland agree that cheap fast food is too easily available, and two-thirds agree that restaurants, coffee shops and takeaways should not encourage upsizing.
Being more conscious of the times we are being upsold to may help us to say ‘no’ more often. It’s an easy way to avoid extra calories and, after all, there’s nothing wrong with saying ‘no thanks’.
So, it is worth thinking about how often you say ‘yes’ to upsizing. Play our ‘No To Upsizing’ game and see how well you fare at resisting offers to ‘upsize’.
This was a guest post by Heather Peace. All views expressed are Heather’s own and not necessarily shared by Which?.
Have you been tempted by ‘upsizing’ offers when you’re out and about? Do you think large items and extras should be sold as specials? Let us and Food Standards Scotland know here on Which? Conversation.