So how much are you supposed to eat anyhow?
Portions do matter. You read a lot of opinions about “what” you are supposed to eat (or not eat) but “how much” and “how often” are an important part of the health equation. The Mayo Clinic has a great visual portions guide that you can check out here. and I have some additional quick tips:
- Use smaller plates and bowls. It’s even a “movement”. We like the look of a “full” portion. If you portion your ice cream into a small half-cup sized ramekin instead of a big bowl, you’ll be more satisfied with less calories. If you use a smaller cereal bowl, you’ll pour the correct 1-cup portion. Choose My Plate offers some general tips to keep in mind. Consider investing in smaller glasses too. A ‘juice glass’ provides a healthy portion of juice. Save the tumblers for water.
- Keep a food journal to log hunger scale (1 being not so hungry, 5 being very hungry). Also keep track of your mood or stress level when eating.
- Slow the heck down! Shoveling food into your mouth = mindless eating. When you don’t pay attention to the texture and flavors of the food you’re eating, you aren’t as satisfied, and it takes your brain 20 minutes to register a full stomach. Put your fork down in between bites, sit back for a moment, have a sip of water. Find support if you need it.
- Intentionally choose less food. If you have 2 slices of toast, just have one. If you take a big heap of mashed potatoes, intentionally take a smaller portion. If you pour the whole “on the side” cup of salad dressing on your salad, pour only half, and mix it into the salad.
- Get enough sleep. Rest can help control hunger and cravings.