Portion control is personally, my most frustrating issue with weight loss.
Usually, when I taste something really good, I eat as I will never have the opportunity to eat it again.
Of course, that is the wrong mentality.
Eating at home, I can always repeat a delicious meal or eat leftovers.
However, what about when you are putting the food on the plate?
From step 1, we learned to keep the food in the kitchen, don’t bring it to the table; so you can avoid those disastrous second helpings.
What are the 3 Primary Macronutrients We Need to Live
Carbohydrates, protein, and fat are the three main components of food and provide all the calories we need to live. We need all three to function properly and maintain a healthy metabolism.
Carbohydrates are your body’s main source of fuel, but you need to choose GOOD carbs.
The GOOD FAT in your diet helps you absorb micro-nutrients.
PORTION YOUR PLATE FOR PORTION CONTROL
Here is an example of how your plate should be portioned.
Your protein should fill a little less than 25% of the plate.
Chop up some carrots and broccoli to fill a little less than 50% of the plate.
Place a small slice of bread/grain less than 25% of the plate.
A tablespoon of fat can be placed in the center of the plate.
If the food fits these sections of your 8-inch dinner plate, then you are sticking to the proper portion level.
If portions are stacked high or filled with deep-fried foods, then you will impede your weight loss plan.
Here is a delicious recipe I modified from America’s Test Kitchen. They originally call for bone-in, skin-on chicken breast; however, I used boneless, skin-less chicken breast (which have fewer calories) and it was great with a side of rice.
Pan-Roasted Chicken Breast and Simple Sauce
FOR THE BRINE
- 1 quart water
- 1/4 cup table salt
FOR THE CHICKEN
- 1/2 cup cornmeal
- 1 Tbsp cornstarch
- 1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast thighs are also good for this recipe
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 2 Tbsp canola oil
FOR THE SAUCE
- 1 tsp canola oil
- 1 shallot, chopped
- 1 tsp all-purpose wheat flour
- 3/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp fresh, chopped parsley
- 1 Tbsp fresh, chopped chives
- 1 Tbsp butter, cold
- FOR THE BRINE: Mix the water and table salt in a large container. Add the chicken breast and refrigerate for half an hour.Remove chicken from the brine and pat dry with paper towels. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 450º.
- Whisk the cornmeal and cornstarch in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Thoroughly coat both sides of the chicken and press in the mixture.
- Heat the 2 Tablespoons of canola oil in an OVEN PROOF skillet. Once the oil is near the smoke point, carefully lay in the chicken breast and cook until golden brown (about 5 minutes) then flip. After 3-4 minutes on the second side, transfer skillet to the oven.
- Cook until the thickest part of the chicken registers 160º - 165º which should be about 15 minutes.
- Remove the skillet from the oven and tent the chicken with foil
- FOR THE SAUCE: Heat the 1 Tablespoon of canola oil in a small saucepan over medium heat, until shimmering. Add the shallot and cook until softened, about 2 minutes. Stir in the flour and cook for 30 seconds, coating the shallot. Whisk in the broth until all flour is absorbed. Cook until slightly thickened and reduced, about 5 minutes.
- Off the heat, stir in the lemon juice, parsley, chives and butter and any accumulated chicken juice. Season with salt and pepper. Spoon sauce over the chicken and serve.
Reading nutrition labels is a must!
In an ideal world, we would not eat ANYTHING which had a nutrition label, but that just is not reality.
Be cautious of serving size!
You may read a label and it contains a microscopic amount of calories; however, this could be for a microscopic portion.
Be aware of SUGAR IMPOSTORS!
These are hidden ingredients which are loaded in sugar.
AVOID anything which contains the following in the first five ingredients:
- Hydrogenated oil
- Processed Soy
- Corn Syrup
- High Fructose Corn Syrup
- Enriched Wheat flour
- Bleached or unbleached flour
10 Portion Control Tips
- Drink a glass of water before you sit down to eat!
- Fill half your plate with vegetables.
- Avoid second helpings – if you are still hungry, have some raw veggies.
- Eat slower!
- Turn off the TV and put away the smart phone at dinner – eliminate distractions.
- Avoid using condiments as a garnish. They are loaded in hidden fat!
- Use a portion plate – or smaller plate and silverware.
- Put away leftovers in portion-sized storage containers immediately.
- If dining out: share an entrée with a friend.
- If not sharing an entrée, ask for a TO-GO box immediately. Turn your one meal, into two.