In case you hadn’t noticed, there’s an obesity epidemic sweeping our nation. Everywhere we look, children and adults alike are battling weight gain and diseases that accompany it with diets and strategies that work for a bit but then drop off. If you go to a typical American restaurant and order a standard entree, you’ll more than likely be served an amount of food that you can’t (and shouldn’t) consume in one sitting.
However, we’ve conditioned our bodies to be used to this, so it’s become normal; portion sizes have gone out the window in favor of an “eat until you’re full” mentality, and this is the problem with America today. But who really has time or even knows how to measure portion sizes? Most of America does not, and that’s why we’d like to educate you on how you can easily jump on the portion control bandwagon.
Buy a Kitchen Scale
It’ll make things pretty easy for you to start watching your portions if you purchase a kitchen scale for measuring. Easier than using measuring utensils that clutter up cabinets, create more dishes and sometimes don’t work effectively the way you need them, a kitchen scale will save you a tremendous amount of time and effort. Scales can be purchased online or even in your typical department store that carries kitchen utensils, and is well worth the investment.
You’ll need to do your research to determine how much you should consume for each meal in the way of produce, grains, starches, and meats. Post a flyer on your refrigerator that contains these amounts so that they’re always in front of your face when you’re cooking. If you’re only supposed to consume ¼ pound of meat for dinner, you’ll know to slice that steak in half before you throw it on your plate. A huge benefit here? You’ll have leftovers and we promise you’ll save on your grocery bill.
Use a Portion Control Plate
So, you probably won’t want to use it all the time (it’s not a great replacement for fine china), but it’s a great tool for getting your feet wet and getting used to weighing out portions. It’s pretty simple: it’s a plate that has sectioned off areas that are labeled for specific use. Produce and fresh greens will always be in the biggest section, your meat will be in the medium section (if applicable), and a starch or fat will be in a similar sized, yet smaller, section. Using these plates will allow you to visualize what an appropriate meal looks like without having to measure out every single item.
Don’t Cook Everything
As an extra tip for you in your portion control endeavors, we want to encourage you to only cook what you need. It’s a lot harder to cut that perfectly cooked steak in half and save the rest for later than it is to leave half the raw steak in the refrigerator or freezer for another day. Being proactive with measuring portions will save you some pounds because you simply won’t be tempted to neglect the rules you’ve laid out for yourself.
Portion control is simply a habit. Weighing out the appropriate portions time and time again will re-condition your stomach to get used to an adequate amount of food. Before long, you’ll know without measuring exactly what’s appropriate in portion sizes for you.