Serving Size Matters

We live in a society in which we upsize everything. The more the better, right? This is not always the best choice in your everyday life when dealing with the consumption of meals and snacks. Learning to eat in moderation takes practice and control. To get started in this mindful act, here are some tips for controlling portion size:

  • Use smaller plates and bowls to cut your meal consumption by one-third.
  • Plan meals and divide them into smaller amounts to reduce portion size. It is also a great way to save grocery dollars.
  • Refer to food labels for portion size recommendations; you might be surprised that what appears to feed one should actually feed three!
  • Don't eat while distracted. Designating that all foods must be consumed at the table will eliminate eating while watching T.V. or driving.
  • Drink water before a meal and continue to drink water while consuming a meal. Water makes you feel full without adding calories.

Using measuring cups and a scale will accurately determine a serving, but may not be the most convenient method. In that case, use your hand to determine a serving size. Everyone's hands are different, so if your hands are large you will have to make adjustments. The following tips will help! Two cups will fit into your hands if they are cupped together. This should be the size of your meal. One cup or eight ounces is equivalent to your fist. One-half cup is about the size of one cupped palm. Three ounces is about the size of your palm. One tablespoon is the size of the tip of your thumb. One teaspoon is the size of the tip of your pointer finger.

By limiting portion sizes, you will not only reduce the total amount of calories you consume each day but you will also reduce sodium and fat content. So the next time you are trying to decide if you should go big or go home, we hope you will remember these portion control tips.

This article was written by Cynthia Stephens, Extension Agent.

10/30/2020 8:33:02 PM
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