Portion Sizes

AnaElmasllari.PortionSizesWith summer quickly approaching, crash diets may seem like the perfect way to get your best bikini bod before beach season. As tempting as these may be, however, they actually have many negative effects on your body.

Most of the weight lost during crash diets is usually gained back as soon as the diet is over. In addition to this fast weight gain, your body may go into starvation mode and store everything you eat, causing you to gain even more weight. Luckily, there is an easier way to lose weight and stay healthy, without gaining it all back.

Portion sizes are the key to staying healthy and losing weight. Cathleen Hunt, Childhood Developmental Psychology Professor, encourages us to use children as an example of how much to eat.

She says that instead of listening to outside social influences, such as feeling the need to “finish our plate,” we should follow the example of children and stop eating as soon as we are full. By doing this, we learn to listen to our bodies and avoid overeating.

Of course this is easier said than done, especially when your meal is one of your favorites. Here are some tips for controlling your portion sizes:

1. When eating out, split your meal in half as soon as it is served to you. To avoid temptation, ask for a to-go box and wrap up one half of your meal before you start eating.

2. When eating at home, serve the meal on each individual plate, instead of putting all the dishes on the table. This avoids the temptation to eat more because the extra food is not sitting in front of you.

3. Disregard what your parents told you about spoiling your dinner. If you’re hungry before dinner, you should actually grab a healthy snack to avoid over eating during the meal. Eating a salad or soup before a meal can also avoid indulging during dinner.

4. To avoid eating the whole bag of chips in one sitting (let’s be real…it’s happened to the best of us), dish out the amount you want to eat in a bowl or container instead of eating right out of the bag.

Soon you’ll find that controlling your portions will provide results quicker than any crash diet.

Photo by Ana Elmasllari