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You going to finish that?

Double Gulp by Flickr user tadashistate

One of the hidden causes of the American obesity epidemic is serving sizes. In the last 20 years, restaurants and food manufacturers have bulked up food items, angling for the budget-first consumer.

What lots of people fail to recognize is that all those extra ounces add up to pounds of fat per year. Liz Monte, writing at Divine Caroline, has an article with handy illustrations of how much Americans' pizza slices, movie popcorns and Cokes have been supersized over the years.

The article, bolstered with pictures and academic research, may whet your appetite for more information. I was interested to learn that 7-11 stores, not satisfied to sell fountain drinks that top out at the "Super Big Gulp," a 44-ounce vat of fizzy corn sweetener, have designed a cup that's larger yet. The "Double Gulp" clocks in at 64 ounces. Half a gallon.

Hey, why don't my jeans fit any more?

(Photo by Flickr user tadashistate.)

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