You have probably heard the cliché “you are what you eat” as a rule of thumb to follow for healthy eating or as a way to help you lose weight. Another cliché that those trying to watch their weight should remember is “you are how much you eat.” The amount of food you eat, even if it isn’t junk food, can still affect your weight. You can try to follow a smart eating plan by choosing the right foods. But if you aren’t watching the amount of food that you eat and don’t exercise regularly, you may find it difficult to effectively lower your calories and reach your ideal weight. For some people, the thought of monitoring food portion sizes with weight scales may seem like too much work. However, it can be easy to do with some creative thinking. If you equate portion-controlled sizes to items in everyday life, it can be an easy method to follow. And it may be a technique that takes you that much closer to a body you’ll love!

Here are some easy-to-remember hints for portion control size comparisons:

  • A serving (3/4 cup) of cooked rice, pasta, or cereal should be about the size of a bar of soap.
  • A serving (3/4 cup) of fresh fruit should be about the size of your fist.
  • A potato (1/2 cup) should be about the size of a computer mouse.
  • A serving (1 ounce) of low-fat cheese should be about the size of an ice cube.
  • A serving (1 tbsp.) of low-calorie salad dressing should be about the size of half a golf ball.
  • A serving (1 tsp.) of margarine or vegetable oil should be about the size of the knuckle on your middle finger.
  • A serving (4 ounces) of lean red meat, poultry, or fish should be about the size of a deck of cards.
  • A slice (4 ounces) of cake (if you’re indulging in dessert) should be about the size of a business card.
  • Foods can be bought prepackaged into portioned sizes, such as yogurt and microwaveable meals.

If you use these portion control hints, you may find yourself spending less time worrying about the amount of food you eat and more time feeling and looking great.

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