Thursday, March 08, 2012

15 Easy Ways To Portion Healthily

I hope this article finds all of you in good health. This week's blog entry has been focusing on food portion and caloric values. While it is often easy to forget how much we are eating and end up eating way more than we should, steps or suggestion to lessen or normalise the portion has to be in place.
Below are some tips i picked up online and tried in real life that could possibly work (and it did for me). Remember, my motivation to do this is to just fuel the body with enough calorie per day as a sedentary lifestyle (sitting in office) with exercises on weekends doesn't warrant even a 2000kcal diet. Read the previous postings to know how easy it is to bust the 2000kcal in just two meals. Henceforth, here are the 15 Ways that you can experiment to see what works for you.

Easily done at home:
1. Use smaller dishes at meals - it allow the a subjective view on the size you are eating. Normal serving on big plate will look you took little and normal serving on a small plate will make them look full. We are all visual creatures.
2. Serve food in correct portions - read my entry here for guidance.
3. Keep leftovers in separated portion-controlled amounts - this is especially true if you overcooked your pastas or stew and do not want to dispose them off. By portioning them correctly, you will less likely to heat up the whole pot of leftover and eat them in one sitting. You take what is correctly portion, each time
4. Never eat out of the bag or packaging - love nibbling on those Potato chips? One serving is typically 15 chips (or 25grams) and oh boy, those drinks sure goes well with those chips!
5. Don't keep plates of food on the table as you will end up taking more - Same goes with sitting too long on the table. Case in point when Bandit and Aman came over to my home for coffee and the sate was just too good for me to resist...
Eating Out:
1. Ask for half or smaller portions - sound silly, but believe me when i actually ask for less noodles when i have my lunch outside. I pay the same price, but at least i do not need to run 5km to burn it off.
2. Portion your food when served - The typical western dinner will consist of a main meal (usually meat), with salad, corn and chips. They are usually enough for two servings. We sit down and gobble one down in one serving. After all, they are paid for. Bring along a container and put away some - or there is no reason to be shy to ask for a separate plate and request the restaurant to pack the other half away.
3.If you have starter or dessert, share! - Sharing is caring. You wouldn't want your partner to overeat, don't you?
4. Skip those drinks - and settle for plain ice water. A sweetened drink such as fruit juice (no fruit juice is as pure as those made at home) and bottomless cola packs calories without you realising. A can of cola sets you back 140kcal, that is two eggs down your system effortlessly!
5. Control those condiments - Those dressings and sauces sure look good and make your food taste better. Remember that each items you add on, including tomato ketchup or chili sauce, has oil and sugar added into the food. Some people are known to immerse their food into these sauces and swallow up to twice the calories than intended.
Grocery made easy
1. Always read the label - it contains all the needed information on nutrition, serving size and ingredient. No better place to start. If the items that make the food is more difficult to pronounce than Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, skip.
2. Beware of  packaging that are smaller - Smaller serving sizes do not gives you the real portion you need. You will end up justifying that you only had THREE SMALL ones and that could had been equal to 2 large ones.
3. Ice Cream - Do not eat them out from the carton or container. You will finish them off. Remember, one BULB SIZE is a serving!
4. Choose lean meat - Meats such as beef and mutton are available as "weight watcher" lean meat in more expensive supermarket such as Jaya Grocer or Village Grocer. You will end up paying about 20% to 30% more than normal variant, but they are worth it. Remember, a gram of fat gives you 9kcal. Every gram you skim reduces 9kcal. Now, you can have that 3oz (or a deck card size) of meat without feeling too guilty!
5. Go green! - Vegetables of all sorts are very low in calories. The general indication calls for a tennis ball serving, which you can have at least two before your stomach tells you enough is enough. Eat your greens!

And here is an extra tips (i know i say 15 Easy ways, but this one has no portion pre-requisite in them) is to CHEW your food. Your brain takes up to 20minutes to register that you are full. Gobbling down your food will only lead to overeating. Chewing not only uses up more energy but they also will help your digestive system to process the food better. You will have less incidences of heartburn or indigestion, plus you get to taste that food in your mouth longer and enjoy it. If you are a big fan of soup, drink them slowly too. A bowl of Cream of Mushroom has more calories than a serving of meat. This is due to the ingredient used. Sipping slowly will surely allow your stomach to adjust to the "filling up" process and by the time you get to your main meal, that "small" serving (that is correctly proportion) doesn't look small anymore!
If you think these tips are good, please share them!

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