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Choose to Eat Less

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Portion size is about changing your eating habits, not your appetite. Simple tips and strategies can help you to keep your portions in check and avoid overeating this holiday season. Sometimes we think smaller portions means that we are going to be hungry at the end of a meal, but it does not need to be that way! Smaller portions mean eating the right amount of food for each meal and not eating excessive calories. Bigger food portions mean more calories and consuming extra calories can lead to obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and some cancers. A simple way to start being healthier is to choose to eat a little less. Some tips for changing the amount of food we eat:

Slow Down. Take the time to slow down, chew and enjoy your food. Eating slower gives your stomach time to tell your brain when you are full. Eating too fast means you can pile on unwanted calories before your stomach has a chance to let you know that you are done.

Bring the veggies to the table. Often, we bring all the food for the meal to the table, serve the plates and all the food remains on the table in plain sight. Leave the food, except for the veggies on the stove or counter. Proximity to the food can make a difference as to whether you want seconds or not. Making it easier to get to the veggies means you are more likely to fill up on those first.

Quit the clean plate club. Do you find yourself thinking you’re not done until your plate is clean?? It’s a habit that many parents instilled in their children. Time to change that way of thinking. Cleaning your plate can often lead to overeating. Focus on knowing when you are full to determine when it’s time to stop. Practice this by leaving the last two bites of food on your plate at each meal. Pretty soon you will not feel uncomfortable stopping before your plate is cleaned. Not cleaning your plate doesn’t mean you are wasting food…Take half your food home for later or pack it up for lunch tomorrow.

Try these tips for keeping your portion sizes in check. Look for other ways you can eat less and still enjoy this upcoming holiday season.

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