Learn food proportions

How to make sure the healthy foods you're eating are perfectly proportioned.

We have focused mostly on choosing healthy foods, but when it comes to weight loss how much you eat of those healthy foods is equally important. Now we'll focus on making sure the healthy foods you're eating are perfectly portioned, because even healthy foods can cause weight gain if eaten in excess. For example, nuts are a great food for heart health and maybe even cancer prevention. But just one cup of nuts has more than 800 calories, which is more calories than a Big Mac! So it is important to keep portions in check if you are going to successfully lose weight on the ALL YOU Reality-Checked Diet.

So break out your measuring cups and spoons because for Week 8 your assignment is to ensure that your portions aren't unintentionally being super-sized. 

This week we want you to actually measure -- not eyeball -- the foods in the meal plan recipes. Are you really using one tablespoon of peanut butter, two tablespoons of salad dressing, 1/4 cup of cheese, one cup of brown rice? You might want to also consider using a food scale to measure things such as 1 ounce of nuts or 3 ounces of chicken or salmon. When you measure food it retrains your eyes (and your stomach!) for perfect portioning.

Below is a guide to help you determine perfect portioning even when you don't have your measuring cups and spoons on hand:

Vegetables or fruits (1 cup): fist

Dry cereal (1 cup): fist

Cooked pasta or rice (1/2 cup): 1/2 baseball

Baked potato: Computer mouse

Bagel: Hockey puck

Pancake: Compact disc

Meat, fish, poultry (3 ounces): Deck of cards

Peanut butter (2 Tablespoons): Ping pong ball

Cheese (1.5 ounces): 4 stacked dice

Margarine or butter (1 teaspoon): 1 die

TIP: Research shows you will potentially eat 50 percent less just by switching to smaller plates and silverware!