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AR Dieting System Alters Food So Users Eat Less Researchers at Hirose Tanikawa Group, University of Tokyo have created a prototype augmented reality dieting system designed to trick people into thinking that their food items are larger than they really are. The team discovered that the feeling of being full is brought on, in part, by the visual perception of the food they are eating – so, the greater amount of food that a person sees on their plate, the sooner they feel full. Users wear a head-mounted camera-equipped display and view their food against a chroma-key blue background. The camera’s video signal is processed by an algorithm that is able to identify food items and enlarge them while also making the user’s hand appear to be opening wider as if it’s naturally holding the larger piece of food. In tests of the system using 12 subjects, the amount of food users ate dropped by about 10 percent when the food was made to appear one and a half times larger. The principle also works in reverse, so when food was made to appear one third smaller, users consumed 15 percent more.

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