Measuring food and drink servings

It can be time-consuming to measure out every portion of food you eat, however there are some simple ways to know that you are eating/drinking an accurate serving size. Measure out foods/drinks like cereal, pasta and wine to determine the exact serving size for a week or so until you are good at eyeballing the portion you are choosing to eat. A one-quarter serving size of walnuts looks significantly different in a woman’s hand than a man’s big hand.  Practice measuring portion sizes of the foods you eat.

Some suggestions from include:

  • 1 cup of chopped raw fruits/vegetables-woman’s fist or a baseball
  • One medium apple/orange-tennis ball
  • One-quarter cup of dried fruit/nuts-golf ball or small handful
  • 1 cup of lettuce-four leaves (Romaine lettuce)
  • One medium baked potato-computer mouse

Once you have your accuracy down, use the same containers (i.e. bowls, glasses, plates, hand:) when you are preparing foods for meals/snacks.  A one-cup serving size of Grape-nuts (with a teaspoon of cocoa nibs:) looks much different in two different shape/size bowls. Remember that the portion you choose to eat/drink may not be the same as  a serving size. If I choose one large apple I will be eating more that one serving of fruit!



One thought on “Measuring food and drink servings

  1. Wow, that’s a good illustration of the difference the shape and size of the bowl can make. I think portion control is probably the hardest part of weight control. I’ve sure experienced that “oh, that’s not enough!” when I’ve looked at what constitutes a portion as listed on the package. I’m thinking especially of pasta (an especially hard one) which can range from 1/2 C. to 1 C.! However, when I’ve stuck to the stated portion, it usually turns out to be enough, especially when I add other low calorie foods like vegetables and salad.

    Another thing I do to help myself is plate our food at the stove and put everything away asap. That way, we don’t sit at the table and continually pick at more food and pile on the calories. If we want to sit and talk, we’ll grab a low cal drink instead. You get used to it, and it becomes satisfying enough.


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