It is so easy to overeat when we don’t portion out our food. You know how it goes…you bring a bag of almonds to work and by the time lunchtime arrives, you read the label on the bag and realize that you have eaten close to 1,000 calories worth of almonds or seven ¼ cup servings.
Many times when you dine out, the servings are way larger than you should be consuming. For example, a serving of meat should be about 3 ounces or the size of a deck of cards. I’m sorry, but I have never seen a steak that small at any restaurant I have frequented.
So what are appropriate serving sizes? I will give you two ways to visualize servings. One will be with common objects (like the aforementioned deck of cards). The other will be with using your hands.
Common objects that represent serving sizes:
- Tennis Ball: Medium apple, orange, peach, nectarine = 1 fruit serving
- Baseball: ½ serving of a cooked rice or pasta dish = 1 grain serving ALSO 1 cup of salad greens = 1 veggie serving
- 4-stacked dice = 1.5 ounces cheese = 1 dairy serving
- Large egg = ¼ cup nuts = 1 serving
- Deck of cards: 1 3-ounce serving of most meat
- Checkbook = 1 3-ounce serving of fish
- Golf ball = 2 Tablespoons of nut butter or hummus = 1 serving
- Poker chip = 1 serving of oil, dressing, etc
How you can visualize servings with your hands:
- Tip of your thumb = 1 serving of oil, dressing, etc
- A fist = 1 serving of fruit or 1 serving of grain
- The palm of one hand = 1 serving of meat
- The palms of both hands = 1 serving of veggies
I hope these guides help you out! When bringing snacks to work, I recommend using those snack-size Ziploc bags to portion out servings. Also, think of these guidelines the next time you go out to eat. Also, never eat snacks out of the bag! Portion them out according to these visuals!
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