portion control blog2

How to Control Your Meal Portions

Portion control can be difficult and confusing if you have no idea where to start. All of the different amounts and types of food you should eat can be overwhelming at first. However, portion control is essential to managing your diabetes (and good for your health regardless!). If you’re new to portion control, you have come to the right place!

The first step to managing your portions is not skipping any meals. Although you may think that skipping that meal will lower your daily carbohydrate intake, it will actually just cause you to eat larger meals later in the day. “People need to eat a minimum of three times a day, avoiding going longer than five hours without eating,” noted Nadine Uplinger, a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association and director of the Gutman Diabetes Institute at the Albert Einstein Healthcare Network in Philadelphia. “You don’t need to get up in the middle of the night, but don’t skip meals.”

Next, you should know how much of each food you are putting into your body. Get out those measuring cups and scales! For the most part, people can’t judge how much ¾ ounce of chicken is, so a scale is a very good investment.

Although being precise is good practice, you need to know how much you are eating even when you don’t have your trusty measuring cups with you. Here are a few general rules of thumb when it comes to portion sizes:

  • The size of a baseball is about one serving of fruit or vegetables
  • A rounded hand-full is about ½ cup of cooked rice or pasta
  • A deck of cards is approximately equal to 3 ounces of meat
  • A golf ball is about ¼ cup of nuts

There is also the Meal Measure Portion Control Plate which helps you with the amount of food you should eat in a meal. All you do is put it on your plate, fill each of the compartments with your desired food, and remove the plate. It is as simple as that! The Meal Measure Portion Control Plate has four compartments following the USDA My Pyramid serving sizes.

Controlling your meal portions is an essential step that every diabetic should take. It can help lower weight loss and promote metabolic function. Now that you have the information, be sure to use it!

By: DiabeticCare editorial team; Published: 1-28-2014, 5:00 PM

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