For the past year, we have both been eating in a much healthier way. Today's "Friday Link" is to some reports on portion control and how important the concept is to our overall health.
First you have to understand that what we consider a "portion of food" today has changed over the years. Business insider gives a breakdown of the change in size of some popular items we eat.
The Mayo Clinic has a post on visual cues you can use to remember what a portion of various food groups should be. For example, your protein portion should be the size of a deck of cards and four dice-size cheese cubes = one portion.
Tips and Tricks
One of the tricks that Penny has used in her successful weight loss program is serving herself on smaller plates.
This light supper of avocado toast and vegetables looks like a full plate when it's served on a small bread & butter dish.
A little treat like ice cream is served in espresso cups. That way a treat does not become a threat to a healthier lifestyle.
Other nibbles, like almonds, are measured out in mini mason jars in the morning, assuring that she knows how many she's eaten that day.
In fact we have lots of mason jars in various sizes. These can hold about one portion of pretzels or grapes for snacking or pre-measured servings of soup or a casserole for a meal.
When Dining Out
Often Penny will order an appetizer as her main course or we'll share an entrée and appetizer or an entrée and dessert. She has also discovered that if she chooses a food that takes time and attention to eat – such as clams, mussels, chicken wings, or artichokes – she'll take her time and eat less. And a slice of grilled bread (like the one in the photo above) is always shared with Ed, the resident bread-a-holic.
When faced with an oversized portion, you can decide how much you can eat. Ask for a sharing plate. Put the portion you want on that plate and either offer the rest to your dining companions or ask the server to put that in a take-out container to have for another meal. While there are certain dishes we love ordering, the portions are often so large that we can enjoy two or sometimes three meals from them.
If you make yourself more aware of what a portion should be, you'll eat healthy quantities and perhaps decide that you would rather buy smaller portions of local, sustainable food instead of large portions of cheap food from big commercial producers.
What's on your Food Lover's Shopping List?
Words: Penny & Ed Cherubino
Photos: ©2017 Penny & Ed Cherubino