A study looking at recipes in ‘classic’ recipe books such as The Joy of Cooking has found an average 40% increase in calories per serving over the last 70 yearsâ€”about an extra 77 caloriesâ€”due, in part, to a vast increase in portion sizes.
Lisa Young, an adjunct nutrition professor at New York University, had similar findings in a 2002 study that compared the book’s brownie recipe from the 1960s and ’70s editions to the recipe from the 1997 edition.
“Same recipe. Same pan. But in the ’60s and ’70s, it yielded 30 brownies,” she says. “In the 1997 edition, it yielded 15.”
Another study looking at the nutritional content of modern food finds that supermarket vegetables now contain 5-40% less nutrients than they did 50 years ago. Time looks at three possibilities for these findings:
- Inaccurate test data
- The ‘dilution effect’
- The ‘industrialisation’ of agriculture
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