December 21

Portion Control 101


Portion control can be a big problem.

In particular, if you are not tracking your calories, how do you know how much to eat?

You can download our portion control guide here –

You will see that the guide is broken down into macronutrients.

Now, I am a great believer in cooking proper meals;

Eating chicken and rice may keep things simple, but it is very boring and hard to stick to.

Make yourself delicious meals like, curries, chillies, lasagnes etc..

You can still keep a mental track of the quantities of the macronutrients.

You will also see that there is a guide for males and a guide for females.

This may feel unfair to the females, but unfortunately for you, men, on average, are larger, have more muscle and burn more calories.

This ‘hand control’ method is not perfect, but is a good starting point.

Use it for a few days and then adjust to suit your goals.

Just the same as you would with calorie tracking;

You start with a certain amount and then adjust based on your goals and your results.

In addition to the portion control guide, I would recommend you aim for about half of your plate to be vegetables.

This can seem like a big goal, but please don’t let it put you off.

Start with the recommendations on the sheet, by all means.

But, particularly if you are looking to lose body fat, ramping up your vegetables can be a great way of filling yourself for few calories.

For lean protein, aim for a 2 palm sized portion for a male and 1 palm for a female.

Use the cupped hands – as per the guide – for carbohydrates.

Remember, ideally, carbohydrate intake should also be based on your activity levels.

If you are not very active, try restricting these foods to 1 or 2 meals a day.

For fats, use your thumb as a guide.

1 thumb per meal for females and 2 for males.

This could easily translate into a tablespoon of oil – for example.

You may be wondering about how you fit in the other foods:

Things like crisps, chocolate, biscuits etc..

These are mainly carbohydrate, or a mixture of carbohydrate and fat.

When you have one of these foods, look at your guide and adjust your main meals accordingly.

When we work with our clients, we start with one habit at a time.

For example, we might have a couple of weeks where we work on getting the lean protein portions into each meal.

When that has become quite straightforward, we would perhaps look at increasing vegetables or improving the quality of the carbohydrate choices.

However, one thing we start with and continue to work on from day one, is eating slowly.

This is a real game changer for almost all of us.

It feels too simple.

Try it.

If you stop and eat your meal as slowly as possible, without distractions;

Put your knife and fork down between mouthfuls;

Chew your food carefully;

Take regular drinks of water;

You will find that you eat less.

Over time, you will find the correct portion sizes for yourself, quite naturally.


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