Home Diabetes Care Diabetes and portion control: how much must you eat?

Diabetes and portion control: how much must you eat?

Diabetes and portion control: how much must you eat?

What’s a portion?

The quantity of food we eat is influenced by the portion amounts on food packages, meal portions at restaurants, and cultural and family customs, more so than by our hunger cues. This in turn sometimes causes us to eat greater than we want to, even when we’re not hungry.

Portion sizes have grown larger over time: what was once considered a meal-size portion is now considered a snack-size portion. It’s no wonder that we’re confused in terms of understanding how much we should always eat!

Whether you’ve got type 1 or type 2 diabetes, or if you happen to try to drop extra pounds, how much you eat at every meal and snack is significant.

Why is portion control vital?

Portion control lets you eat based on what your body actually needs, as an alternative of counting on external cues resembling portion sizes.

Blood sugar control is closely related to the quantity of food you eat, especially foods that contain carbohydrate as they’ve the largest effect in your blood sugar. In case your food portion comprises more carbohydrate than your body is ready to handle, your blood sugar goes up. Also, the additional calories will affect your weight, which will even affect your blood sugar by reducing your body’s resistance to insulin.

What’s an accurate portion size?

Everybody’s needs are different. The variety of portions you wish relies in your weight, gender and activity level. Your dietitian can advise you on the variety of portions you need to have at each meal and snack.

The table below lists portion sizes of common foods, based on Diabetes Canada.

Style of food 1 portion equals …
Grains and starches 1/3 cup cooked rice

1 slice (1 ounce) whole grain bread

½ cup cooked pasta

½ medium potato



1 medium size apple

1 cup strawberries

1 small banana

2 tablespoons dried fruit

Low-fat milk and alternatives 1 cup 1% or skim milk

¾ cup yogurt, plain or unsweetened

Protein or lean meats 1 ounce of fish, poultry, lean meat or cheese

1 large egg

2 tablespoons peanut butter

½ cup chick peas or black beans

A meal plan will inform you what number of portions you need to eat at each meal. The variety of portions you eat is the serving size. For instance, your dinner meal plan may suggest you eat 2 portions of starch, 1 portion of fruit, 1 portion of milk and three portions of meat.

This implies you’d select the food you want from each food group, in the quantity that matches the variety of portions. The serving sizes would then be, for instance: 1 cup cooked pasta, 1 medium apple, 1 cup skim milk, and three ounces chicken.

Probably the most accurate approach to tell if you happen to are eating the suitable amount is to measure your foods using measuring cups, a kitchen scale and measuring spoons. After we depend on guessing the measurement, we are frequently improper! Pull out the dimensions and measuring tools no less than once per week to envision your portion sizes.

Do I even have to measure and weigh every little thing I eat? Is there a neater way?

If weighing and measuring seems like an excessive amount of effort and time, think about using alternative methods. These methods will not be accurate enough if you happen to are concerned about being precise, especially when counting carbohydrates. Nevertheless, for the person with type 2 diabetes who’s fascinated by reducing portions to drop extra pounds, these methods can work thoroughly.

1. The plate method

In keeping with Diabetes Canada, your plate at each meal needs to be stuffed with larger portions of non-starchy vegetables and smaller portions of starchy foods and lean meats or protein. This approach to portioning is known as “the plate method:”

  • Select a plate that’s about 9 inches in diameter. The larger the plate, the larger the portion will likely be.
  • Draw an imaginary line down the middle of your plate.
  • Then on one half of your plate, divide it again so your plate is split into 3 sections.
  • One-half of your plate needs to be stuffed with non-starchy vegetables (for instance, green beans, carrots, broccoli or salad greens).
  • On the opposite half of the plate, fill one quarter with protein or lean meat (for instance, chicken, fish or tofu) and fill the opposite quarter with a starchy food (for instance, rice, pasta or potato).


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