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Distorted portions distort Americans' waistlines

When was the last time you had a reasonably portioned meal at a restaurant? Food sizes have doubled and even tripled at American restaurants over the last 20 years leading to excess calorie consumption. And these distorted portion sizes are a significant contributor to the growing overweight and obesity epidemic in America.

Sensible portions can be achieved by using your hands as a guide.
Sensible portions can be achieved by using your hands as a guide.Scott Johnson

According to the National, Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Obesity Education Initiative, in just over 20 years the average size bagel has more than doubled in size and calories. Likewise, your average plate of spaghetti and meatballs doubled in size and calories, now providing a whopping 1,025 calories per serving. During that same time period, soda servings have increased from 6.5 ounces and 85 calories to 20 ounces and 250 calories.

The U.S. National Institutes of Health estimates that today’s excessive portions could easily lead to the consumption of an additional 500,000 calories per year. Is it any wonder that more than two-thirds of Americans are currently overweight or obese?

Fortunately, with the TransformWise approach to sensible portions you can combat this trend of oversized portions and waistlines.

Each person is biologically unique with different calorie requirements — a 90-pound woman does not need the same amount of calories as a 225-pound man. That is why the TransformWise sensible portion approach relies on your hands as guide to determine reasonable portions.

  • Vegetables and fruits should make up the bulk of your diet, with a sensible portion being the size of your entire hand.
  • Wholesome carbohydrates should fit into your cupped hand.
  • Fats, preferably healthy fats, should be about the size of your thumb
  • And lean protein sources that cover your open palm is a reasonable portion of protein.

In addition, TransformWise advocates five to six smaller, metabolically balanced meals per day. The growing body of research suggests that eating five to six smaller meals and snacks per day offers myriad of benefits, including better blood sugar control, balanced hormone levels, improved appetite control and increased thermogenesis — when your body uses excess calories to produce heat rather than storing them as fat.

Combine sensible portions and eating better with metabolic resistance training and you are more likely to succeed in your weight management goals.

For a more information and a complete guide to revealing your ideal physique and managing your weight, read TransformWise: Your complete guide to a wise body transformation.