In the 1950’s McDonalds just offered one size of soft drink – 7oz (about 210ml). It now has 12, 16, 21 and 32oz which is about 950 ml and about approximately 24 teaspoons of sugar. But it doesn’t stop just there. Burgers and fries are now 2 to 5 times larger than those originally served. Portion distortion has not just been increasing in fast food outs, it’s in our home with dinner plates increasing 36% since 1960, and in the food industry with large packets with multiple servings on the supermarket shelves.
So why does this matter? Put simply, the bigger the portion, the more you eat and the more calories you consume. And over time a significant gain of weight. How much we eat is often determined by the size of the packet we buy or the meal we order or serve on our plates. And we finish everything on our plate or until the packet is empty rather than finish eating when we are full. We need to learn the correct portion sizes and stop being dictated by food manufacturing companies, take away outlets and restaurants.
How well do you know the correct portion size from common everyday foods?
Take our test below
Answer: Lean meat; D, Potato; B, Banana; A, Nuts; C, Vegetables; D
PORTION DISTORTION CAN BE REDUCED BY FOLLOWING THESE 5 TIPS
- Eat from smaller plates, bowls and cutlery. You can reduce up to 22% calories in your diet.
- Drink from tall narrow glasses rather than short wide glasses, because we pour more into short wide glasses.
- Pre-portion your foods. Never eat directly from a box, bag or container that contains multiple servings of a food item, such as family size bag of chips, or tub of ice-cream. Portion your food into individual serves.
- Choose the smallest container or plate on offer when buying takeaways. They usually contain more than enough food.
- Don’t be tempted by value meals or supersized offers. They may be good value for money but there are not a bargain in term of calories.
If you are struggling with portion your sizes, make sure you make an appointment with one of our dietitians who are extremely knowledgeable if portion distortion.