Corporate Fitness and Active Aging

Listen to Your Plate! Portion Control for Employee Health

This blog was written by Mechelle Meadows. Meet our blogging fitness specialists at the NIFS website.

healthy plate, employee health, nifs, senior wellness, fitness center managementPortion sizes can be tricky. Your employees have probably heard before that a serving size of meat is similar to a deck of cards. Or a serving of cheese is equivalent to four dice.

It's Easy to Dish Up Too Much Food

However, when you’re loading up that plate at dinner time, your hungry stomach can you fool you into thinking that one serving of meat should look more like three decks of cards than just one. Measuring by ounces or cups can be even trickier. One cup of pasta constitutes an entire serving, but chances are our plates are full from edge to edge with noodles.

Ways to Visualize Smaller Portions

One diet tip I’ve read before is to start using smaller dinner plates—that way, your plate will look full with less food.

To even better visualize proper portion sizes, try using a portion-control plate. These fancy meal inventions have outlines or even full illustrations depicting how much of your plate should be filled with each food group. They come in different versions for adults, children, and even diabetic populations. The most common version illustrates that half of your plate should be filled with fruits and vegetables, leaving one-fourth of the plate for a lean meat or protein and another fourth for whole grains.

Now, say you do a lot of entertaining in your home, and you want a more sophisticated look for your dinner plates. I’ve now seen portion-control plates that are subtly designed, using a floral pattern for example, to still show you the outline of where your foods should be fitting!

Starting with dishware, we can introduce tools into the household to make dinners easier and healthier. Emphasize the importance of portion control in your corporate health and wellness program.

Topics: overweight employees nutrition