Maintaining a healthy weight seems trickier these days. Not only do we spend more time sitting at a desk, in a car, or commuting, but we also tend to eat out. When you’re on the run, it is just easier to buy something when you can so you don’t skip a meal.
However, restaurants have been increasing their portion sizes. This might seem like a great value, but in reality, your health (and waistline) might be paying for it. Don’t know how to watch portions? Experts at Baptist Health South Florida are sharing their best tips here, and I cannot stress enough how important it is to learn to take control of portion sizes.
It’s not about dieting. Larger portions may lead you to unintentionally consume more calories than intended for one meal or snack. “As long as you’re restricting the total number of calories you take in per day, you can still have a good mix of protein, carbs and fats that don’t exceed what you really should be taking in,” says Andrew Forster M.D., an internal medicine physician with Baptist Health Primary Care. Find more details here.
So what is my trick? I ask for half portions, or split a regular restaurant serving in half. I save the rest for later, take it home or even split it with a friend or my children. It’s a simple hack that saves you from overeating and helps you maintain your weight. I also use small plates whenever possible, so they look full with less food, instead of trying to fill up a larger plate and then over consuming.
Smaller portions help you limit calorie intake. Here are some tips from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to help you with portion control.
- Split an entrée with a friend.
- Serve the food on individual plates to avoid second helpings.
- Avoid eating straight from the package when you are at home.
- If you feel hungry, snack between meals.
- Be aware of large packages. Divide up the contents into smaller containers.
- Store tempting foods on high shelf or at the back of the refrigerator and move healthier food to the front.
U.S. Dietary Guidelines
The USDA reports that about half of American adults have at least one chronic disease that is often related to poor diet. The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (ChooseMyPlate.gov) suggest that you maintain a healthy eating style by:
- Making half your plate fruits and vegetables.
- Focusing on whole fruits.
- Varying your veggies.
- Making half your grains whole grains.
- Moving to low-fat and fat-free milk or yogurt.
- Varying your protein routine.
- Drinking and eating less sodium, saturated fat, and added sugars.
Learn more by checking out Baptist Health South Florida’s blog here.
What are your best tips when trying to maintain a healthy weight?
Disclosure: this post is part of a sponsored collaboration with Baptist Health South Florida but all opinions are my own.
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