food label, calories, serving size, Bon Secours Weight Loss Institute, nutritional ,portion control, portion, portion sizeOne of the easiest mistakes to make when you’re trying to lose weight is figuring out how much to eat based on a serving size. What we need to be following is portion size.

When we don’t, the calories can add up fast.

A serving size is what you’ll find on the Nutritional Facts label. It’s supposedly a rough estimate of how much people eat.

The problem is, a serving size doesn’t take into consideration your age, weight, whether you’re male or female or how active you are, according to the National Institutes of Health. Most importantly, it doesn’t account for your metabolism.

In fact, a serving size is most likely the typical amount someone eats or drinks. It has nothing to do with whether you’re trying to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight.

In contrast, a portion is how much food you choose to eat. It doesn’t matter where that happens – in your home or at a restaurant.

How many calories you need depends on your individual needs. Working with a Registered Dietitian can help you determine a daily calorie goal that helps you lose weight safely and successfully.

Here are seven tips to help you avoid overeating:

  • Make eating the focus on your activity. Try not to eat while watching TV. Before you know it, you’ll be heading to the kitchen for seconds during a commercial break.
  • Always eat from a plate or bowl, never straight from a box or bag. It’s very easy to eat more than you should when you’re not counting chips or measuring nuts.
  • Eat slowly. Savor each bite. Think of how your food tastes and smells. Chew your food well.
  • Recognize when you feel full and stop eating. Resist the urge to eat everything on your plate.
  • Use a smaller plate. This will naturally encourage you to eat less because there isn’t as much food in front of you.
  • Don’t skip meals. Feeling starving makes it hard to control your portion sizes.
  • Buy low-calorie, pre-packaged snacks. Cheese sticks and nuts come in low-calorie snack packages.

When you need nutritional guidance, ask a Registered Dietitian for advice. If you need to lose weight, talk to your health provider about a medically-supervised weight loss program.


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