Controlling Portion Sizes at Home

Serving Vs Portion Sizes

  • Serving and portion sizes are two terms that are used interchangeably, but actually have different meanings.
  • Portions are the amount we choose to put on our plate.
  • A serving is defined by the USDA as a specific amount of one food group.
  • What a child puts on their plate may be larger or smaller than what the USDA My Plate has defined as a serving, and usually the portion is much larger than one serving.
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Ways To Control Portions At Home

  • You could measure and weigh your food but that becomes quickly impractical.
  • You can teach your child to serve themselves smaller portions that are healthier and more in line with what a serving really is.
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Controlling Portions At Mealtime

  • Use a smaller plate
  • Use smaller serving spoons
  • Include water as part of a healthy meal
  • You don’t have to eat all their food to have a healthy meal. Learning to listen to your internal hunger clock is part of learning proper portion control.
  • Don’t be tempted to finish off leftover dinner the next day. Freeze leftovers as single servings so that you can pull it out of the freezer when you need a quick, healthy meal for your family.
  • Take one scoop from each of the food groups.
  • Have fun coloring their plate with foods that have color. You’ll see that colorful foods tend to be the healthier foods.
  • Cut lean meats into small portions before placing them on the table.

Controlling Portions During Snacktime

  • Limit snacks to specific snack time so kids will be hungry during mealtime.
  • Learn what a serving size is for each snack and eat it off a plate instead of a bag.
  • Measure out a serving size before multitasking, could possible not notice how much you are eating.
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