trying to lose weight, but can’t seem to break through that plateau? the solution could lie in one simple practice: weighing your food. a national survey of more than 6,000 adults showed that people who measured their food were more successful at losing weight (and keeping it off) than those who didn’t. not only does weighing ensure you’re serving up the proper portion sizes (a huge component of weight-loss and weight-maintenance), but it also teaches you what a proper portion should look like - especially useful when eating out. (assuming of course you don't tuck your little food scale in your purse!)
why wait until the new year to get started? with christmas cookies and holiday parties throughout the month, now is as good a time as any to weigh in on those portions, keep serving sizes on point, and maintain your your goal-getting status. need ideas to kickstart your food-scale frenzy? here are 12 foods you should be weighing.
1 [trail mix] trail mix is the ultimate snack tease - all those yummy bits of nuts and dried fruit (and sometimes even chocolate!). it reels you in, and then boom! you’ve consumed eight big handfuls in one sitting. the proper 1 oz serving may look tiny, but it’s plenty to keep your hunger at bay until your next meal. dole out your portion, then put the rest (farrrrrrr) away.
2 [grains] contrary to popular belief, carbs are not the enemy, but grains can add up so it's important to measure your portions. shoot for 125-gram portions of your favorite cooked whole grains. good healthy options: brown rice, quinoa + whole grain oats.
3 [wine] between holiday get-togethers and looooong days of shopping, you’re gonna need some wine. for health reasons, of course. with the antioxidants and resveratrol it affords, can we count this as a health-food? we say yes. but don’t use the season as an excuse to over-imbibe. 1 serving of wine = 5 oz.
4 [proteins] no matter how you slice, dice, grill or broil it, it's super important to eat enough protein. rule of thumb: take your body weight in pounds and divide by 2. then aim to consume that same # in grams/day at a minimum. weigh 140lbs? aim for 70g. unfortunately, oftentimes people aren't getting enough of it. when you weigh it, you can ensure that you’re getting the proper 3 oz portion of your protein of choice, making sunday food prep a breeze.
5 [baking ingredients] we know you’re gonna be doing some (healthy) holiday baking so try using the insanely convenient tare function to make your baking a breeze. simply place your mixing bowl on the scale, press tare to zero out the weight and add ingredient 1, weight in whatever unit of measure you choose (g, ml, oz, lbs). press tare to zero it out. add ingredient 2. be crazy and switch up the units of measure, if you'd like! ingredient 3...and so on. you’ll get more consistent - not to mention delicious - results, and (bonus!) you’ll dirty only one dish.
6 [holiday sips] let’s face it, not all holiday libations are as guilt-free as our health(ier) holiday sips. we’re all for enjoying the occasional glass of eggnog or hot chocolate, but drinking calories can really add up. keep an eye on serving sizes by weighing it out + try to keep each cup of yummy goodness at 100 ml or less.
7 [chocolate] not only is chocolate (of the dark variety) loaded with antioxidants, studies also show that people who eat dark chocolate every day actually weigh less than those who don’t. (you're welcome). the problem is that cacao is actually pretty bitter without all the added sugar and fat most chocolate bars are packin’, so watching your portions is crucial for this sweet treat. keep it to 1 oz per day.
8 [dried fruit] fruit is healthy, so you can eat its dried counterpart to your heart’s content, right? wrong. fruit is full of (natural) sugar - which isn't bad - but when you dry it, not only is the sugar concentrated, but the water content is zero. the result: a high-sugar snack that won’t satiate for very long. you can still enjoy a handful of dried apricots here and there - just make sure you keep it at an ounce. tip: look at ingredients before buying - avoid added sugars or anything that says sugar-free, code for chemicals!
9 [ice cream] most ice creams aren’t as angelic as our beloved, protein-packed fave halo top. yes, we know going spoon-to-pint is oh-so-fun, but a surefire way to stay off the naughty list is to measure out the perfect 4 oz portion and then step away from the freezer.
10 [cheese] no holiday party spread would be complete without a cheese platter, but while you may think a cube or two is no biggie, this devilish little dairy can really do some damage (to your waistline) if you’re not enjoying it in moderation. always make sure you stick to a 1.5 oz serving. tip for holiday parties: this is about the equivalent of about 2 dominoes.
11 [healthy fats] “healthy” is not a hall pass for overeating. whether it’s nuts, oils, or avocado, these healthy fats are calorie-dense and can really creep up on you if you don't watch your portion size. so enjoy, but indulge just 1 oz at a time (or 15 ml for oils).
12 [mail] ok, it’s not food, but this is one way we use our food scale on the daily at fitlosophy (no seriously, we really do). not sure how much postage to put on those christmas cards and packages? just throw your mail on our handy-dandy scale, and say buh-bye to long, holiday lines at the post office!
proper portions got ya stumped? download our handy food-portion guide for the lowdown on healthy portion sizes + cooking equivalents.
for day 3 of our 12 days of fitmas, we’re giving away one of our Livestrong-approved digital darlings to keep your healthy portions in check, you goal-getter, you. here’s how to win our little red food scale:
subscribe to our blog. [big red button on the left]
comment below + share ONE holiday treat you can't wait to weigh.
bonus points if you share on social media + tag us!
the fitlosophy elves are watching you – so, ready…go! check back each day to see if you won + enter to win again for 12 days of FITmas!
ho, ho, ho,