When you want to lose weight, it’s best to start with your diet. And though many people have a general sense of what’s good for them and what isn’t, many still struggle to lose weight. But it isn’t because they aren’t trying or aren’t eating the right foods.
Often, it’s because they’re eating the wrong portion sizes.
Portion control is especially challenging today. Portions in restaurants are bigger than ever. Even the portions of meats and other foods in your grocery store are getting larger every year. In fact, some studies reveal that since the 20th century, portions have grown between two and five times in size.
As a smart dieter, it’s important that you understand portion and serving sizes, and how these relate to weight loss. We discuss these points below and give you some quick tips to keep you on track, and ensure that you always know how much to put on your plate!
PORTION SIZE BASICS
Do you know the difference between a serving size and a portion? If not, it’s best to start with the basics:
- Serving Size: A serving size is the amount of food listed on a product’s label specifying how much of it you should eat.
- Portion: A portion is the amount of food you choose to eat at one sitting. This is related to the total amount of food you put on your plate.
People often believe that they’re eating a recommended serving size when actually, they have a much bigger serving on their plate. So, while they think they’re consuming the listed amounts of fats, carbohydrates, protein, and calories, they’re actually getting far more. This can push even the best-intentioned dieters off track.
Allocating portion sizes before beginning to eat is important. It’s easy to put food on a large plate and not realize how much you’re eating until the meal is complete. By being mindful of portions as you cook and plate your meals, you’ll be more aware of what you’re eating, and it will be easier to stay on track.
PORTION SIZES AND WEIGHT LOSS
Without tracking portion sizes, you’re going to have a difficult time losing weight. After all, eating more than your body needs means that no amount of exercise will get your weight loss back on track. And, while you can take comprehensive weight loss supplements like PhenQ to suppress your appetite and burn existing fat, proper portion control paired with the supplement will deliver even better results.
Many dieters struggle with portion sizes when they aren’t eating prepackaged foods. And because fresh produce should be the focus of any healthy diet, it’s important to understand how to track portion sizes of your favorite proteins, fruits, vegetables, and grains. Here are a few examples…
A single serving of:
- A vegetable or piece of fruit should be about the size of your fist.
- Pasta is approximately the same size as a scoop of ice cream.
- Protein like meat, fish, or poultry is the same size as your palm without the fingers, or a deck of cards.
- Steamed rice or other grains should fill a cupcake wrapper.
- Snacks like pretzels and chips should fit into a cupped hand.
Keep in mind that grains, dairy products, and many packaged proteins come with serving sizes on the label. For all other fresh produce, you should use these general rules of thumb to stay on track.
5 QUICK TIPS FOR PORTION CONTROL SUCCESS
If you’re struggling with portion control, there’s no need to fret. There are some simple steps you can take to regain control and keep your diet and weight loss efforts on track.
Here are 5 of our favorite portion control tips for success:
- Purchase Smaller Plates – Bigger plates often encourage bigger portions, so you end up eating more than you mean to. Using smaller plates at home and even asking for a smaller plate at a restaurant will help you stay on track without being tempted to eat food just because it’s in front of you.
- Eat Fruits and Vegetables to Fill Up – Because fruits and vegetables are high in fiber and low in calories, having these on your plate is a great way to get full without overeating. Fill up half the plate with fruits and vegetables and then finish it off with one quarter protein and one quarter of a healthy starch. This is the easiest way to balance your macronutrient intake as well.
- Purchase Single Servings When Possible – Large bags or containers of food make it difficult to stop after just one serving size. Set yourself up for success by purchasing single serving bags of your favorite snacks or other foods. If you can’t, portion out serving sizes and put into separate bags when you get home. This will stop you from accidentally overeating.
- Slow Down Your Eating – If you eat slowly, you’ll feel more satisfied eating less food. Your body will need time to adjust to eating smaller portions, and slowing down will make the transition much easier.
- Avoid Triggers – If you know there’s a food that you can’t stop eating once you start, don’t eat it! Foods you can’t resist will set you up for failure and cause serious setbacks in your efforts to lose weight and be healthier.
PORTION CONTROL: YOUR WAY TO WEIGHT LOSS SUCCESS
When you want to lose weight, what you eat, how much you eat, and your physical activity need to be combined in perfect harmony. Doing so will keep you feeling satisfied after each meal and help you to succeed.
By paying attention to food labels and actively considering portion sizes before you eat, you can take control of your diet and achieve the body you want. So, do you have five minutes before each meal to ensure you’re eating the right amount? That’s what we thought!