Fit Tip Tuesday: The How-To of Portion Control

How much should I eat?

Should I eat ½ a cup, ½ a plate or ½ a restaurant portion?

I am so confused…Help!

I think portion control is part of an overall problem in American diets because we have been overfed!  Don’t think so? Did you know that in 1950 a McDonalds Cheeseburger value meal was the same size as today’s Kids Meal?  Just based on the McDonalds test alone, portion sizes have inflated almost 4x’s! The CDC (Center for Diseases and Control) released this information and then they followed this up with the fact that most adults, on average, are 26 pounds heavier than they were in the ‘50’s.

Portion Control!  It IS important!  The best way to manage your weight and health is to manage the food that you consume.  We pay attention to the money we spend, we make record of the bills we pay, so therefore we should be even more concerned with the food we are placing in our bodies!   I Corinthians 10:31 states, “So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”

Here are some tips to help you with portion control and how to introduce it into your lifestyle.  Take these tips and implement them into your everyday life and you will see results.

  • Water! If you have read my articles before, you know that I am a water cheerleader!  There is so much to be said but I will just say that if you are dehydrated or thirsty, you will typically overeat to compensate the lack of water… so drink up!
  • Eat on smaller plates Did you know that a regular dinner plate could actually hold an entire turkey? LOL! How about switching to an appetizer or salad plate.  (and what a cute way to add some color & patterns to your dish pantry!)
  • Minimize distractions Eating should be a time where you fuel your body and take a moment to relax.  I’m not suggesting you take an hour to eat a salad but how about turning the electronics off and just focus on the company you are with or the time alone that you have!  You will be more mindful of what you are eating and how much you are eating when you are actually focused on one thing.
  • Add more veggies to your plate If you feel like you are following the ‘portion size’ of your foods but you still feel hungry or it seems like there isn’t enough food, add leafy greens to your plate.  It will help fill you up and give you the ‘mental’ satisfaction that you have eaten enough.
  • Use your hand as a guide The inside of your hand (about the size of a deck of cards) should be about 3 oz of meat; your fist balled up should give you a pasta portion or a potato portion; the tip of your thumb is about 1 tbsp (which is a great indicator for nut butters, dressings, etc).