Motivation Monday: Is "portion distortion" sinking your diet?

Americans tend to judge a restaurant by how much food they put on your plate.  It might look tempting, but our love affair with large portions is not doing our health much good. 

GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. -- Pouring yourself a bowl of cereal seems like it's easy enough. Check the side of the box and you can easily figure out your calories and other nutritional information. Or can you? What you put in your bowl might exceed the serving size on the box by two or three times.

That's called "portion distortion." Chris Freytag at GetHealthyU says it's a problem that can lead to major implications for your health. Large portions can add calories to your day-- a couple hundred extra calories per day can add up to a ten pound weight gain by the end of the year.

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The first step is understanding how much you are really eating. A serving size is what the company uses to determine the nutritional information you rely on. It can be very different from the portion size you actually eat.

If your goal is weight loss, start understanding what you are consuming. Chris recommends an inexpensive food scale to know how many ounces you are really eating. If you like big portions, but your waistline says you should be eating smaller portions, try using a smaller plate. You can trick yourself into thinking you are eating more food than you actually are.

Chris also has a handy way to size up portions on the fly. Handy because you are literally using your hand as a guide.

Learn more on Chris's website, GetHealthyU.com.