My life’s mission is to be able to make portion control and a balanced diet part of my everyday healthy life. With portion sizes going the super sized route – at the grocery store, at fast food and sit down restaurants – it’s easy to see how we’ve lost perspective in what a portion size actually looks and feels like. Below I hope to be able to shed some light on what’s helped me get a better handle on it all.
I don’t know how it was for you growing up, but I grew up being told to eat everything off my plate because we didn’t want to waste any food. And while that messed with my intuitive eating, it still wasn’t too bad as long as I was eating my Mom’s home cooking because she used the real stuff, vs. processed foods. When it got cray, cray was when processed foods outnumbered the real food in my life and the word diet entered my vocabulary.
Thankfully though things began turning around for me when I relearned what intuitive eating and clean eating were all about. Re-teaching myself how to listen to my fullness levels vs. waiting until after I cleaned plate to check in, did wonders. As did eliminating most processed foods in favor of clean eating (for the most part, not gonna lie chocolate & chips make their way in more often than not). But the true place I still struggle with is getting a balanced, well portioned meal on my plate every time.
As I shared with you in my How I Curb My Sweet Tooth post, eating the right portions in the right combinations helps bring me out of my sugar craze and into a more balanced state of being. My goal is to stay in this place all the time and in watching the 21-Day Fix informercial – with their Portion Control Container Kit – which comes out at all times of the day, I realized using pre-measured containers would be an easy way to measure out my meals to stay on track. Totally beats having to measure food via scales or with portion sizes measured by the palm of your hand or to the size of an inanimate object – like a deck of cards. Huh? I already know I have a skewed perception on portion sizes so I don’t need to keep guessing. I need to know what a correct portion size looks like and how to combine my healthy food choices accordingly. And while I know purchasing the kit would have made it easier, I knew I could probably do the same with stuff I already had around the house.
Enter the help of pre-measured containers and snack baggies. I totally love and rely on my Pyrex containers, but the smallest they go is 1 cup. And 1 cup is about how much a snack sized baggie holds, which is perfect for measuring out fruit and veggie portions.
When I need to measure something smaller than that, measuring cups and spoons work wonders.
I mainly use those to help me measure out my proteins, healthy carbs, fats and cheeses. It’s amazing how freeing it is once you know what you want your caloric intake to be and you map it via your containers because you don’t have to worry about calorie counting and measuring. You just know how many containers you have available to you in a day and each night you fill them up accordingly to keep on track. And the best part it’s not a diet, because I still get to fill them with the protein, carbs and cheeses I love, just in the right portion size, which has helped me get back on track with intuitive eating.
Eventually I hope after doing it for some time, I won’t need the containers because I’ll have a handle on what a well balanced portioned meal really looks like; and I’ll never go back to believing that just because the packaging at the grocery store or the servings at the restaurants are bigger than I need, I need to eat it all. Regardless of my progress though I know hating my body, looks, etc. is so not where it’s at. Loving myself and allowing positivity to rule my world and my inner self talk is what will get me to a healthier place easier and that’s what it’s all about.
What has helped you in getting a handle on portion sizes?