The holidays are almost here and we all know that means great food and lots of treats. Our office breakrooms and houses are full of lots of once a year goodies. We all have our favorite treats that we wait all year to enjoy. The temptation might be too hard to resist so if you can’t say no, focus on portion control. Instead of two yummy pieces of fudge just eat one or share your treat with someone else. Place your treats in the cupboard and out of sight every time you go into the kitchen.
How will you know a reasonable portion of food when you see it? Visualize the objects mentioned below when eating out, planning a meal, or grabbing a snack.
•Vegetables or fruit = a handful
•Pasta = a scoop of ice cream
•Meat, fish or poultry = a deck of cards
•Snacks such as pretzels or chips = a cupped hand
•Potato = a computer mouse
•Bagel =half an English muffin
•Pancake = a CD
•Cheese = a pair of dice or the size of your whole thumb (from the tip to the base)
•2 Tbsp. of peanut butter = a ping pong ball
•Less is More! Use smaller dishes and don’t go back for seconds.
•Table Tip. Don’t keep platters of food on the table; you are more likely to “pick” at it or have a second serving without even realizing it.
•Split it. If you are eating Christmas dinner out this year, ask for half or smaller portions or immediately put half of your entrée into a to-go box to take home with you.
•Dessert Dilemma. If you can’t resist that piece of pie for dessert, split it with someone.
•Don’t “Graze”. Avoid those pre-dinner snacks like the chips and cheese and cracker platters. When snacking go for the fruits and veggies, or place a few chips, crackers or cookies on a small plate to help prevent overeating.
•Stop eating when you begin to feel full. Sit down and enjoy your meal. Chew slowly and pay attention to textures and flavors and when you are full, focus on enjoying the setting and your friends or family for the rest of the meal.
•Take A Walk. If you can’t resist that second portion, then take a walk after dinner and burn some of those calories off.
•Size Matters. Download the NHLBI serving size card, to help you remember normal what serving sizes look like. http://hp2010.nhlbihin.net/portion/servingcard7.pdf
•Join the Nutrition Challenge. This free 8-week online program will help you increase the number of fruits and vegetables you eat each day. You will be able to track your daily and weekly progress throughout the program. Register Now.