Portion control is quite difficult but eating the right amount of food is incredibly important for good health and helps to maintain or lose weight. Overeating makes you feel tired even if it’s healthy food. And, of course, it can be harder to manage your weight.
When searching for healthy eating or weight loss tips, “portion control” comes first to your mind. Portion control means sticking to a set amount of food for meals. Whether the motive is to lose weight or just for healthy eating habits, it’s crucial to have an idea of what a healthy portion looks like.
To help control portions and form healthier eating habits, follow these portion control tips:-
- Drink water before eating: – Filling your belly with water will naturally make you less likely to overeat. Herbal tea and water consumption helps you to feel fuller and satisfied throughout the day. Water is one of the few things you can indulge in as much as you want without any negative effect; it keeps your energy levels up and helps keep your hunger away.
- Fill your plate with veggies first: – Aim to have a vegetable with every meal. Try to fill half your plate with a mix of fruits and veggies and the rest with equal parts of whole grains and lean protein. Eating veggies are the best option as they are low in calories and rich in fibre and other micronutrients.
- Use the same bowls and plates: – If the plate is really big or small, or if the bowls are bigger than you’re used to, it’s really easy for your brain to get a bit confused, meaning we’re more likely to feel unsatisfied after eating.
- Eat slowly: – Fast eating means that you’re more likely to miss your hunger and fullness. So take your time with the meals, savour each bite as it helps you to enjoy the meal and also avoids overeating. Food, when eaten in a rush, will seem less satisfying.
- Add balanced macronutrients:-To make portion controlled meals more filling, ensure meals are balanced in terms of macronutrients — a source of protein, healthy fats and complex carbs. Chickpeas, lentils, barley, brown rice, quinoa can be included as they are low in a glycaemic index which digest slowly and give you energy for a long time. Healthy fats such as avocado, nuts, seeds and olive oil to be added because the fat helps us stay more satisfied, plus it’s really good for your skin, hair and body. And of course, good quality protein.
- Don’t eat from the bag or box: – When you eat directly from the container you tend to eat more and lose the portion control. Therefore take out a small portion onto a plate to keep a track of the portion you eat.
- Slurp your appetizer: – Before you dive into your meal, have some soup. Light vegetable soups and salads have something in common: they have high water content, are full of fibre-rich veggies and are generally low in calories. This high-fibre, high-water combo seems to be a great way to curb subsequent calorie intake.
- Mealtime distractions to be avoided: – Turn off the electronic gadgets and put them away while you eat. Distracted eating tends to lead you to eat more, not just at that meal, but for the rest of the day. Mindful eating helps you notice your body’s hunger and fullness so that you can actually know when you’ve had enough.
- Control portions when eating out: – When eating out it is better to share the meal or to eat half share. Other suggestions are to order a side salad or vegetables, asking for sauces and dressings to be served separately and avoiding buffet-style.
- Eat More Soluble Fibre:-In general, fibre-rich foods can help you feel full. And foods with soluble fibre, such as oatmeal, pears and beans, are particularly filling.
Over to you:-Portion control can be done by making a few changes in your diet before it becomes your habit as it takes dedication and perseverance. Incorporate these ideas into your diet life and you will soon begin to see the changes in your body and your health. In the end, portion control is a quick fix that improves your quality of life and may prevent binging!