Size Matters in Food Servings

Auburn, Alabama— It can be difficult to not only maintain a healthy diet but understand the correct portion size for each meal. With restaurants serving enormous plates of food, fast food establishments serving a whole day’s worth of calories for one meal, and pizza slices being served in larger portions every year, it has become harder to know how much to eat.

Helen Jones, a regional Alabama Extension agent in human nutrition, diet and health, says, “it seems like in every group I work with on healthy eating or diabetes meal planning, there is at least one person that will say to me “I know what to eat, I just eat too much.” This seems to be the case with most of America. Instead of wondering why you can’t seem to lose weight, Jones suggests you should follow these helpful tips to control portion size.

Use a smaller plate or bowl

Use a salad plate rather than a dinner plate. Your plate will be fuller and the smaller portions will look larger.

See what you are eating

Rather than sitting on the couch with a whole bag of chips, portion foods onto plates or into bowls rather than eating directly from the box, bag, or container. Seeing the food in a dish gives you a visual cue of how much you’re actually eating.

Serve smaller portions

You’ll waste less food if you serve yourself less to begin with. If you are still hungry you can take more. If you accidentally take too much food, don’t feel obligated to clean your plate.

Limit distractions

Focus on the food when you’re eating meals. The computer, TV, cell phones, books and magazines can take your attention away from the meal, causing you to pay less attention to what you are eating.

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