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Published on October 07, 2016

bowl of popcorn

Control of Portions Can Clobber Backsliding Habits, Help with Weight Loss

There’s a snack, dish or culinary delight out there that has your name on it. It’s the one you cannot resist. We all have our favorites – those sneaky treats, the ones we just lose it over. They are so darn good, we say we’ll have just one.

Then find ourselves holding an empty bag and wonder what just happened.

Portion control can go a long way toward curbing over-indulgence, but it takes a bit of a plan and little good, old-fashioned self-discipline. These tips can help you, too.

We reached out to Hy-Vee Registered Dietitian Anna Schroeder, RD, LN, and she shared some advice with us to avoid over-doing it, no matter what you love to grub.

  1. When you dine out at a restaurant, look for entrées you and your partner or friend both like, and then pick one to split. If you can’t decide, get two, but have the server bring boxes with the meals, then box half of each one up and take it home for a super-easy supper.
  2. You can serve food on individual plates when you dine at home. Leave the big casserole plate or the rest of the serving dishes in the kitchen – or anywhere out of sight. It’s easier to say no to seconds when they are not sitting in easy reach, tempting you at the dinner table.
  3. You can try smaller plates, bowls and even utensils at meals. Your eyes drive your stomach, so when you look down at a full plate, you are likely to feel more satisfied.
  4. When you’re snacking watching TV, leave the big bag or bowl in the kitchen. Just transfer a reasonable amount, the portion you plan to eat, onto an individual plate or bowl. It’ll make you go get a refill instead of consuming too much, right out of the package.
  5. You can check labels and make sure you understand the serving size of what you’re eating. Most of the totals for calories, fats and other nutrients carbohydrates are listed “per portion.” If you develop a better understanding, like that a bag of those chips is actually three or four portions, you’ll avoid tripling or quadrupling the fat, calories and salt you eat.

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