Drink Too Much? Blame Your Glass

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If you find yourself getting unexpectedly tipsy while enjoying a glass of wine or two, check the size of your glass. A new British study, led by researchers at the University of Cambridge, has shown that drinking wine from a large glass — even when the amount of wine in the glass is the same as usual — encourages you to drink more wine in a shorter amount of time.

That may sound kind of obvious, but the details of the study, published in the journal BMC Public Health, are actually kind of interesting: The researchers worked with the owners of a Cambridge bar and restaurant, where wine was available for purchase by the glass. Over the course of 16 weeks, the bar-restaurant’s owners changed the size of the wine glasses in which wine was sold every two weeks, alternating their standard-size 300-milliliter wine glasses, larger 370-mililiter glasses and smaller 250-mililiter glasses.

Turns out when the wine was served in the larger glasses, people bought (and presumably consumed) almost 10 percent more wine than they did when served wine in the standard-size glasses. The sales differential with the smaller-than-standard glasses was deemed “inconclusive.”

“We found that increasing the size of wine glasses, even without increasing the amount of wine, leads people to drink more,” Dr. Rachel Pechey, of the University of Cambridge’s Behaviour and Health Research Unit, said in a release. Pechey, who was involved with the study, posited that “larger glasses [may] change our perceptions of the amount of wine, leading us to drink faster and order more.”

So there you go. If you drink too much, you can just blame the size of your glass.

Now if only you could blame it for making you eat too much cheese.

Photo courtesy of iStock