The Dish On Over-Indulging, Just In Time For Holidays

New book, The Dish Diet: Watch Your Plate, Not Your Weight, reveals simple yet powerful eating changes that can make all the difference - without putting the kibosh on holiday cheer.

As the holiday season of feasts and festivals fast approaches, the nation's slow economic growth continues to contribute to the growing problem of expanding, unhealthy, low-cost food intake and expanded waistlines. The new book, The Dish Diet: Watch Your Plate, Not Your Weight, by Danuta Highet and Roberta Cahn, reveals some simple yet powerful tools to help stem the impact of "portion distortion", and offers a few simple changes that can make all the difference - without putting the kibosh on holiday cheer.

Dining out, especially during the holidays, is a way many busy families cope with the stresses of life. Restaurants struggling to survive in a slow economy opt for quantity over quality by increasing the amount of "low cost carbs" to perpetuate the illusion of huge volume "value" portion sizes. At home, families are following the pumped-up portion trend, as the cost of healthy options skyrocket and the concept of "portion proportion" is lost. During the holidays, when excess is traditionally the norm, the danger of over-indulging is greater than ever...but a little knowledge can go a long way. The Dish Diet: Watch Your Plate, Not Your Weight examines the why and how of portion-size growth over the last few decades...and explains the relationship between history and waistlines.

To battle the ever-pervasive "portion distortion", the right tools are essential - and choosing the right size dishware and utensils is a start. The Dish Diet: Watch Your Plate, Not Your Weight advocates creating healthy eating habits by providing the specific tools with which to control and enjoy the food you eat. Authors and entrepreneurs Danuta Highet and Roberta Cahn make the case that the right size, specifically your dish size, does matter when it comes to losing weight and keeping it off.

"The Dish Diet is not just another diet book," says Highet, "It explains HOW we got here and offers readers the tools they need to make simple changes to how they eat, resulting in a healthier life style. Ultimately readers will learn how to counteract the illusions that alter our perception of "individualized-right-sized" portions. We can easily make changes in our behavior when we understand how we developed these behaviors in the first place. This is especially critical when you eat out and during the holidays."

In addition to offering a wealth of excellent, usable information and statistics, The Dish Diet: Watch Your Plate, Not Your Weight is bursting with entertaining anecdotes and practical solutions, complemented by a collection of refreshing original illustrations by budding artist Stephanie Snyder which add a light-hearted, "easy-read" feel to the serious topic of health and wellness.

"Ever-increasing portion-sizes over the years have played a huge part in the "super-sizing" of the average American," says Cahn. "The typical dinner plate has grown from 9 inches to 12 inches - a seemingly innocent change that has expanded our waistlines. In a culture where we're trained from infancy to "clean our plates," the size of those plates (and bowls, cups and utensils) does matter."

The American Dietetic Association agrees, stating that eating smaller portions can make a big difference calorie intake. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says that changing the way you eat (i.e. use smaller plates) can make it easier to eat less without feeling deprived, Even the USDA concurs that lifestyle practices that help people maintain a healthy body weight incorporate the right balance of foods and appropriate portion sizes.

Until now there was no guideline to help find right, individualized portion sizes. In The Dish Diet, the authors offer an easy method to "right-size" meals. The Dish Diet focuses on how to eat, not what to eat. It offers the information and the tools to determine body mass index, daily calorie recommendations - as well as dishware replacement guidelines to easily regulate portion control automatically. The Dish Diet does not drastically change what you eat (no stocking up on celery and rice cakes), but it does change how you eat and consequently how much you eat.

The Holidays are fast approaching - as is the time of year to set New Year's resolutions. Making small changes now in the way you eat will let you focus your resolutions for next year around your family and friends instead of having to diet again.

For more information or to speak with the authors, contact Christina Daniels at (856) 831-7146 or The Dish Diet: Watch Your Plate, Not Your Weight is available online at or at