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How to Tell If You’re Overeating

AppleHand_portionmesure_400If that piece of chicken on your plate is bigger than the palm of your hand, you are eating too much. Here’s how to size up a healthy portion (per meal), using your hand as a guide. From Think Eat Move Thrive.

• Palm = Proteins: Most protein portions should be about the size of your palm (when you cup your hand). Concentrated protein is found largely in animal products, like fish, poultry, meats, and cottage cheese. Some veggie protein sources include legumes, tofu, and tempeh.

• Thumb = Fats: Fats are important, but they’re also very dense; so, match fat portions to the size of your thumb. Good fat sources are olive oil, coconut oil, nuts, and seeds; unsalted organic butter is also good. You can also use your thumb to measure out about an ounce of cheese. Note: Nuts and seeds vary considerably in nutrient density. While they are highly nutritious, they are also high-calorie. Our general recommendation is about 2 tablespoons nuts or seeds (about one handful, or two shot glasses).

• Fist = Fruits, Grains, Etc.: Your bread, fruit, cereal, rice, and grain portions should be about equal to the size of your closed fist, or a tennis ball. Remember that it’s always preferable to consume whole grains and whole fruits as opposed to processed foods, fruit juices, or fruit concentrates.

• Hand = Veggies: Open your hand and spread your fingers as wide as you can—that’s a good vegetable portion. Raw vegetables are loaded with fiber and nutrients, and they contain very few calories.

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