Jun 13, 2022 Is Your Plate Sabotaging Your Weight?

Typical portion sizes, in restaurants and in homes, have been growing fast—and so have American waistlines. Here are some ways to make your plate a healthier one. First, understand the terms:

  • PORTION SIZE: How much food you are served or choose to eat at one time
  • SERVING SIZE: A standardized unit of measuring foods used in dietary guidance

What is a recommended serving size?

  • Bread: one slice
  • Cooked pasta or rice: ½ cup
  • Milk or yogurt: 1 cup
  • Fruit juice: ¾ cup
  • Cheese: 2 ounces (about the size of a domino)
  • 2–3 ounces meat, poultry or fish (about the size of a deck of cards)

Source: American Heart Association

How to Take Back Control of Your Portions

Deanna Schweighardt, RDN, CDCES, Nutrition Counseling at Cooperman Barnabas Medical Center, shares some of the strategies she gives her patients.

  1. Read nutrition labels. Know that the serving sizes on labels are a way to compare similar foods, not a recommendation for how much to eat. Choose foods that are higher in dietary fiber, vitamin D, calcium, iron and potassium and lower in saturated fat, sodium and added sugars.
  2. Pick a smaller plate. Studies show that people eat more when they are confronted with larger portion sizes.
  3. Use the MyPlate plan. Fill half your plate with fruits and vegetables, a quarter of your plate with grains and a quarter of your plate with protein: seafood, meat, poultry, eggs, beans, peas, lentils, nuts, seeds and soy products. Find more information, including recipes and an app, at http://www.myplate.gov.
  4. Wait 20 minutes after finishing your plate before you have a second helping. It takes that long for your stomach to signal your brain that you’ve eaten. You may find your hunger is already satisfied.

Get it Checked

Our team of registered dietitians offers individualized and group nutrition counseling programs for those struggling with a medical condition or who want to take an active role in their health and well-being.

To learn more, call 973-322-7007.