Portion Control Plates

You go to a restaurant and place your order. The server proceeds to bring you a heaping plate of pasta or fries that is bigger than your head, and you try to finish it. Then you go home and think that you should be serving the same amount as the restaurant. Sound familiar? It’s happened to many of us, and it’s even more difficult when you’re eating something you love.

An easy solution to the portion problem and a way to make sure you’re eating a balanced diet is to use a portion control plate. What is it? Varying in style, a portion control plate is a plate that reminds us that approximately half of our meal should be veggies and fruits, and the other 2 quarters should be lean protein and healthy grains. There are some that are very specific, so that you can tell which sections are for certain types of food, while others are more discreet in function.

Types of portion control plates:

Raised portion control plate: It has raised compartments that divide sections, kind of like a school lunch tray. Plates with raised sections usually come in ceramic or plastic options. Look for a plate with at least 3 sections; 1 half and 2 quarters.

Lift-off portioner: Shaped like a thick circle with holes to portion food, the portioner is one piece and lifts off when you’re done serving on your regular plate. Search for a portioner that has 3 or 4 divisions and use the largest for vegetables.

Bento box: It’s common in the Japanese culture to eat lunch from bento boxes, which make a great portioned container for a meal on the go.  The boxes can come with many different, sometimes interchangeable, compartments. Some even offer small containers for sauce that can be used for dressing or dairy.

Stylish portion control plate: Circles, swirls or other designs discretely remind you on how to distribute your food without distracting you from enjoying your meal. Find a design that strikes you as interesting and start portioning your plate.

DIY options: Go to your local paint-your-own ceramics shop to make your own painted plates, or search Pinterest for more ideas on how to make a portion control plate.

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