Portion plate

Portion Plate

We eat with our eyes and the size of our plate influences how hungry or satisfied we feel after eating a meal. Over the past few decades portion sizes served in restaurants and cafes have increased. In the USA, the average restaurant meal today is over 4 times larger than in the 1950’s, with Ireland following a similar trend. This can lead to over-eating, which in the short term can lead to an uncomfortable fullness after eating, and in the long term can lead to weight gain due to an excess calorie intake.

But how do we know how much to eat? Ideally, we would listen to our internal hunger and fullness signals. However, for many different reasons, a lot of us are out of touch with these signals. Sometimes we don’t sense hunger until it is quite intense. Other times we may not notice we are full until we are quite uncomfortable. Neither of these are pleasant experiences.

Therefore, we have designed a portion plate to help guide you. The plate is split to guide you to eat balanced meals and healthy portion sizes. A good rule of thumb is to aim for half a plate of vegetables/salad, ¼ plate of lean protein and ¼ plate of wholegrain carbohydrates. Portion size guides are included on the back of the plate.

Croí Recipes

5 tips to perfect your portions:

  1. Check the size of your dinner plates, a standard plate size should be no more than 9 ½ inches.
  2. Leave a cup measure in your cereal, rice, or pasta container so you have a clear idea of how much you’re scooping out each time.
  3. Focus on food quality, not quantity, and take the time to savour and enjoy the smell, taste and texture of every mouthful.
  4. Lean meat portions half the size of your palm are perfect. Cut yours down to size and save the leftovers for lunch the next day!
  5. Always include some vegetables or salad at every meal (aim for half your plate), these are low calorie nutrient rich foods that provide vitamins and minerals for good health.

Contact the Croí Health Team on 091-544310 or email healthteam@croi.ie.

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