Spring has arrived, and with longer days and warmer weather comes a new crop of fresh produce. It’s the perfect time to “spring clean” your diet, so out with the heavy fall and winter fare and in with springtime fruits and veggies. It’s time to get back out there and show the world what you’re made of and making a few small changes in your everyday diet can add up to big changes in a healthier, fitter you filling up on foods that give you the most bang for the least amount of calories. The key to a healthy diet and weight management is portion control. The concept is easy: if you eat less, you consume fewer calories, and therefore you lose weight! But, what do food portion sizes really look like? With everything being super-size meals, it can be really tough to figure out what a “normal” food portion size should look like. Most people know the basics about nutrition, however, we must to be aware of just how much we are eating.
A food serving helps you understand how much food is recommended from each of the food groups. A serving is defined as a standard measurement of food. This is what is printed on the label, with a defined measurement of the serving.
A food portion is amount of food you put on your plate or choose to eat! It’s easy to eat three or four “servings” in your portion!
It’s very easy to get these confused, but knowing the difference and using portion control can make a BIG difference on your waistline!
If your first portion is big enough, avoid going back for more. Consume
alcoholic beverages in moderation, if at all. The smaller your plate, the smaller your portion. Eat your meals at home on a smaller plate. Before going back for seconds, wait 10 or 15 minutes. You might not want seconds after all. When eating or snacking in front of the TV, put the amount that you plan to eat into a bowl or container instead of eating straight from the package. It’s easy to overeat when your attention is focused on something else.Buy or portion out treats and snacks in small bags or packages.Portion sizes are key especially for once-in-a-while foods such as treats, sweets and drinks.
Try drinking a glass of water before your meal.Try making your own iced tea with honey, instead of white sugar. Instead of an alcoholic beverage, try a diet soda, or club soda with fresh lemon or lime. You will consume less calories. Try mixing 100% fresh fruit with club soda for a refreshing alternative to soda or packaged drinks! You can make your own lemonade with fresh lemons, sparkling water, and honey instead of sugar! If you feel hungry between meals, eat a healthy snack, like a piece of fruit or small salad, to avoid
overeating during your next meal.
Make your home a “portion friendly” zone! Store tempting foods like cookies chips or ice cream out of site or get rid of them all together! People tend to consume more when they have easy access to those temptations!