Know how much you should eat of each food group.
Portion sizes seem to have increased over the past 20 years. As a result, no one knows what a healthy portion size is, restaurants serve enough food to feed at least two people, and the food and drinks you buy at the grocery store or in vending machines are often sold in large “single portion” packages but actually contain multiple servings.
Obviously, large portion sizes make weight control difficult. You don’t mean to overeat, but it’s sitting there in front of you. Since you can’t depend on restaurants or grocery stores to sell food in healthy portions, you’ve got figure it out for yourself. Eating healthy, losing weight, and weight management are all closely related to portion control.
How Much of What Kinds of Food?
A certain number of servings are recommended from each of the six food groups. As you’re eating a serving of food pay attention to the portion size of the serving. It’s easy to think you’re eating one serving when you’re really eating two.
The following is based on a 2,000 calorie diet. The number of calories you need depends on your age, level of physical activity, and weight management goals. To determine how many calories you need each day, find a calorie counter tool online or talk with your personal trainer.
Someone who is on a 2,000-calorie diet should aim to eat the following each day:
- Six to eight servings of grains, preferably whole grains. One serving equals one slice of bread; half a cup of cooked rice, pasta, or cereal; or one ounce dry cereal.
- Four to five servings of vegetables. One serving equals half a cup of raw or cooked veggies cut up, half a cup of juice, or one cup raw, leafy greens.
- Four to five servings of fruits. One serving equals one medium piece of fruit; a quarter-cup of dried fruit; half a cup juice; or half a cup of frozen, fresh, or canned fruit.
- Two to three servings of low-fat dairy. One serving equals one cup of milk, one cup of yogurt, or one and a half ounces of cheese.
- Less than six ounces of lean meat, seafood, or poultry.
- Two to three servings of fats and oils. One serving is one teaspoon of soft margarine, one tablespoon of mayonnaise, or two tablespoons of low-fat dressing.
In addition to these daily restraints, you should aim to eat four to five servings of nuts, legumes, or seeds on a weekly basis. One serving equals one third of a cup of nuts, two tablespoons of peanut butter, or half a cup of dry beans.
Portion Size Tips
It can be difficult to know what one ounce of cereal or three ounces of meat looks like. When you’re looking at your plate, one cup of food should look about the size of a baseball and half a cup like a light bulb. For a one-ounce serving, picture a golf ball and a deck of cards for three ounces. One tablespoon is about the size of a poker chip.
Don’t know how much pasta or cereal you normally eat? Find out by pouring the food into a measuring cup. Try this method with the juice or milk you drink. It’s likely that you’re eating or drinking more than what’s considered a healthy portion size.
Eating and drinking smaller portions is a simple way to reduce the number of calories in your diet, lose weight, and keep the weight off for good.
Cut It Up
Ever wondered how much you should eat for dinner? Divide your dinner plate into four pieces. One-fourth should be protein, one-fourth starches, and half vegetables.
Weight-Management University is HERE! Learn more about the Self Guided Educational Course that will teach you what you need to know to make exercise and nutrition a part of your healthy lifestyle for a permanent weight management solution. Free Open Enrollment!
If you live in the Gilbert area, treat yourself right by calling or emailing today to get started on an exercise program that will change your life for the best.
Proper nutrition plays a key role in your journey to a healthy lifestyle and to meet your fitness goals. Planning a well balanced diet can be extremely overwhelming and time consuming. That is why I have teamed up with Personal Trainer Food to help make it easy for you. Click here for your $50 coupon and to place your order. The quality of the food is second to none.