It's one thing to say "I'll have just a bit more" and another to act on it (and not end up eating a lot). Portion control is not easy at all, let's face it, and larger home-cooked servings don't help at all. But eating the right amount of food is very important to have good health and to maintain or lose weight. And, we’re not just talking about junk food, overeating healthy food does no good either.
Portion control is the cornerstone of healthy nutrition, aside from making sure that you consume mainly healthy food. It is very easy to overeat healthy food or meal by eating a huge portion, more than your body really needs. Portion control is not just an important part of a weight-loss regime, but it also plays a role in your relationship with food.
If you overeat constantly, even on healthy food, it leaves you feeling a bit tired and sluggish and, of course, makes it harder to manage your weight. Making portion control a part of your daily life means that you need to have a more positive relationship with food.
If you can’t stop eating once you’re full, you will be left feeling guilty and uncomfortable. This guilt and discomfort make you see food as the enemy and cause you to restrict food. This restriction leads to feelings of starvation which in turn causes more overeating, creating a poor relationship with food and feelings of loss of control.
Understanding your portion sizes will let you make better eating choices and reach your goal. So, the following is the list of 6 smart tricks to control your portion size when you want to get into shape.
1. Use a small plate
This is a very easy thing to do and can be very helpful in letting you avoid overindulging. Use small cutleries for your meals; small plates and spoons can subconsciously influence the amount of food that you eat. We all tend to fill our plates with food while eating. While using a large plate, the chances of overeating also increase. For avoiding this, you should stick to using small plates and spoons for your meal.
2. Avoid eating directly from the container
Eating food from big packages or large containers leads to overeating. People generally don’t pay attention to how much they are eating and tend to overeat without knowing it. This especially happens in the case of snacks and nuts. According to numerous studies, people will eat more out of large packages as compared to smaller packages. So every time you have a snack, take some out onto the plate and then eat it. Never eat from the package or container directly.
3. Use your hand as serving guide
If you cannot determine the correct serving size then make your hand your serving guide. Our hands tend to be in proportion to our body. So, the bigger you are the bigger your hands will be and so using your hand as a serving size will help you fulfill yourself without overeating. Your plate should include:
Protein: A palm
Vegetables and salads: A fist-sized
Carbohydrates: One cupped-hand
High-fat foods: One thumb-size
4. Maintain a food journal
It might not seem that important to you to keep track of the food you eat in a day, but practically this strategy is a great one for weight loss. Making a log of the food you ate in a day and the serving size makes you more aware of the type and amount of food you’re consuming. Keep a food diary to help you to stay on track.
5. Start with a glass of water
Drinking a glass of water 30 minutes before mealtime to suppress your hunger and make yourself eat less. People often can’t differentiate between hunger and thirst. Quenching your thirst makes it easy for you to understand how hungry you are. So, go ahead down that shot of water like a pro!
6. Eat More Soluble Fiber
In general, foods rich in fiber makes you feel fuller. Especially soluble fiber, like oatmeal, pears, and beans, are particularly filling. This is because soluble fiber contains more water, giving it bulk. In the digestive tract, soluble fiber produces a thick gel that slows down digestion and keeps hunger at bay.
According to research, adding soluble-fiber-rich flax or chia seeds to meals makes you feel more full and chia seeds, in particular, reduces the hunger hormone ghrelin.
Stay healthy, stay safe :)