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Portion control

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There are so many strategies you can use to make sure you´re eating the right amount of food, one of those is portion control.

One of the most common fitness goals is weight loss, followed by muscle growth, obesity and overweight is still a huge problem and it´s getting worse. One of the reasons why is because portions are bigger and bigger, companies make bigger portions and they trick you with the small and medium sizes so that you end up buying the bigger one. With this increase in sizes we´ve also increased the amount of food we consume per meal even when we cook at home so having an idea of how much we´re eating and how much we actually need as a great strategy for weight loss.

You may had even try to lose weight before maybe more than once so I´m sure you´ve followed the most common advice “eat less – move more”, I´m sure you´ve also heard about portion control. Some people just get crazy counting calories and they find it easier to stay on track by controlling every portion of food they eat.

From what I´ve seen, this strategy is used more by girls who are losing weight, some guys also follow it for weight loss. This strategy can be used to help you stay on track on your diet by having a clear idea of how much food you can eat for each macronutrient. We all know that if you eat more you´ll gain weight and if you eat less you´ll lose weight. The problem is that since portions nowadays are really big we are completely misguided on how a single portion of each macro looks like. There are different ways you can keep track of portion control when you´re cooking and preparing your meals, one is using your hands as a guide and the other is using your plate. I consider using your hands as the best strategy because there are different sizes of plates and this can create confusion.

To use your hands there are certain guidelines for example: a portion of protein is of the size of your palm for girls, a portion of vegetables would be the size of your fist, for carbohydrates it would be one cupped hand and for fats it would be the size of your thumb. For guys you can go up to double of each. When you´re eating out most people who are following this strategy find it easier to order half of the portion.

For some people even this guidelines can be confusing so getting help from experts is important, nutritionist or dietitians can show you what a portion of each macro looks like, when you´re seeing it in front of you it´s easier for you to get a more clear idea so that you can stay on track.

If you measure this you´ll find out those portions are small considering what you´ve been eating, so when you start a diet and follow this guidelines you can feel hungry almost all the time because you´re eating way less and considering that you are making two changes at the same time it makes things harder. I´m considering you were eating a lot of unhealthy highly processed and fast foods so the first change is avoiding those unhealthy foods and eating healthy ones and the second change is eating less.

When you start this change, if after a couple of weeks you find it really hard to stay on track then you need another strategy that helps you improve your hormones and metabolism to get rid of those cravings and hunger so that it´s easier to lose weight.

For some people strategies like counting calories, points or portion control alone work great to lose weight and keep it off, for others we may need some more strategies that help us improve our health and at the same time lose weight.

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Pam