Portion control

29 May 2014

No matter how healthy you think you eat and how hard you are training, if you are piling your plate full every meal or even eating too little you will never hit your fitness targets.

Many people are surprised when they realise what a typical portion size should look like. Remember, ladies are to consume 2000 calories, men 2500 calories and children (5-10) 1800 calories on average per day.  If you’re used to piling your plate high with pasta or filling your bowl to the brim with cereal, you need to significantly reduce this which can come as quite a shock, but once you cut down, you’ll soon get used to eating less.

Use smaller plates or bowls for your meals. A small plate full of food is much less disheartening than a large plate that’s half empty.

Take your time eating to allow your brain to register when you're full. Once full, stop eating! We often find it hard to leave food on our plates but it's actually a good habit to get into. Lots of food can be saved and re-heated the next day. Look at the amount you cook and try not to cook too much. If you reduce your portion sizes too much and still feel peckish, increase the amount of salad or vegetables on your plate. You don’t need to cut down on your fruit and veg if you’re trying to lose weight! And if you’re craving a mid-morning snack, go for a piece of fruit. As I mentioned in a previous article, just keep your portions of fruit to maximum of 3 as fruit has lots of natural sugar.

Think about everything you eat during the day; it’s easy to forget the biscuit you had with your brew at work or extra slice of cheese in your sandwich. I ask my personal training clients to keep a food diary, this in itself can be quite an eye opener.

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