Going out to eat is something that everyone loves to do. Across the country however, portion sizes have become out of control and are contributing to the quickly rising rates of obesity. It is easy to over indulge without even realizing it. Learning how to decrease portion sizes is one of the easiest and most helpful tricks to aid in weight control. Here are some of the simple tricks I have picked up along my own journey to health!
Split a meal
Restaurants often offer double or even triple the serving size we should be eating. And I, like most people, will eat whatever is placed in front of me. Sharing or splitting meals is an easy way to enjoy the food you want when going out to eat while cutting the portion size to decrease calorie intake.
Take your time
It is easy to down the food on your plate before giving your body a chance to digest it. This can cause over indulgence and often is the cause of many belly aches after meals. If you make an effort to take your time while eating, you will usually find yourself feeling fuller, faster. Taking sips of water in between bites can also help you slow down your eating as well as cutting your food into smaller bites. Your mind will think you are eating more because you are taking more bites but really, you are giving your body a chance to get full before over-indulging.
Water, water water!
To help yourself slow down during meal time and savor your food, try to get in the habit of having water with your meals. Drinking water before, during (between bites), and after meals will help you to slow down and will also help you to feel full faster so you are less likely to overeat.
Use a smaller plate
This trick pertains to cooking at home but it is the simplest way to decrease your portion sizes. By using a smaller plate, you are automatically starting with less calories and it tricks your mind into think you have eaten more than you have, which will make you feel fuller faster. You can use this trick when out to eat by ordering the kids size, half size, or side option instead of the full meal.
Check the label
Most people open a bag of chips and start indulging right from the big bag. Without even thinking, it is easy to finish an entire bag of snacks. To prevent this from happening, check the nutrition facts label and measure out the specific serving size the company recommends. This is a great way to still enjoy your favorite treats without accidentally overeating.
Written by GUADS guest writer Emily and GUADS staff member Kate