Today I am teaching you how to measure food portions to lose fat.
As the saying goes, “abs are made in the kitchen”. But what exactly does that mean? It’s not like I can bake the perfect little set of abs! Here’s a good example: When I used to compete in bikini body building shows my training pretty much stayed the same year round. So why could I see my abs sometimes and not others? It all had to do with meticulously tweaking my diet as I got closer to a show for fat loss and voila! Hello abs!
So how does measuring your food help with fat loss? I first want to say that there are NUMEROUS ways to eat for fat loss. The number one thing I suggest focusing on with your diet in regards to fat loss is consistency. If you consistently feed your body whole nutritious foods you will see results. If you’re new to dieting I want you to first focus on eyeballing portion sizes. At every meal choose a palm sized portion of protein, a fist sized portion of carbs, and a fist sized portion of veggies. As you get closer to your body goal you may notice that your body begins to adapt to your eating style or your changes are coming in slower. That’s when you can start using these elevated methods.
Two of my favorite ways to measure food
The first way I like to measure food is with a scale. I used to live and breath measuring food this way. Scales are very cheap and can be found at practically any store like Target, Home Goods, or Amazon. This is the scale I have. The benefits to measuring your food with a scale is the precision of accuracy. Say you want to start adding more protein into your diet to help keep your body in an anabolic state (muscle building). You’ve been eyeballing portion sizes for a while but you’re ready to dive into the juicy details. You take your normal portion size and weigh it to realize you’ve only been eating 2 ounces of protein for every meal when you really should be eating more like 4 ounces. This is where a scale will help you become more familiar with what a real portion size looks like!
One of my favorite food groups to measure is fats – in particular nuts. Oh my gosh nuts are so misleading. Yes they are absolutely a healthy “snack” but if you are a traditional snacker, you’re likely consuming handfuls of nuts. I wanted to do a little experiment of my own to see how many calories I would normally consume by just grabbing a handful of almonds and then measuring out an appropriate portion size.
A normal portion size for nuts is 1 oz or 28 g (the weight on the scale) and 14 grams of fat (bottom picture). In the top picture that was me going balls to the wall and just grabbing a hearty portion. When I measured it out on the scale it was 47 grams in weight. That’s about 60% more fat than a standard portion size. When I do the math that’s about 8.5 more grams of fat with just the single hand swoop. Since there are 9 calories per gram of fat that equates to 75 more calories from just mindlessly eating. Not a big deal in that small little scope of things but imagine if you have two portions of nuts? Get my drift. These small mindless eating habits could add up to big totals. Using a scale to measure the weight of your food can help to learn better portion sizing and either aid in adding extra nutrients or help to cut some extra calories that you just don’t need.
Here’s a video I found about how to properly measure food using a scale. People often get confused with the weight in grams versus the grams in a macronutrient. If a serving size says that a portion of nuts is 28 grams it is referring to the weight. If you’re told to eat 14 grams of FAT that is referring to the nutritional content in the food and you’ll see that under Total Fat. So if you’re wanting to eat 14 grams of fat that doesn’t mean that you’d only weigh out 14 grams of nuts. You’d actually be weighing out 28 grams of nuts. Make sense? If not email me for additional help.
Using measuring cups/spoons
The second useful method to weighing your food for more precision is to use standard measuring cups and measuring spoons. Most labels will specify portion sizing in both weight (grams) and/or cups and spoons. To get one serving of almonds you would scoop up 1/4 cup. Make sure that you don’t scoop up a heaping cup – it should be LEVEL. Otherwise, you’re basically doing the same thing as blindly taking a large handful.
Should I use a measuring cup or a scale?
If you’re sold on the idea of learning how to measure your food you may be wondering which method is best for you. Using a scale is helpful for people following a specific prescribed meal and macro plan. Your nutritionist or personal trainer might give you a daily goal or a meal goal of protein, carbs, and fat. For example maybe your plan says to eat 25 grams of protein per meal and 12 grams of fat for 3 meals and 30 grams of carbs for 3 meals. A scale would help in this situation.
If you’re given more of a healthy portion size diet or meal plan you would be just fine using cups and spoons. For example you’re told to eat one serving of protein for 5 meals, 2 servings of fat, and 3 servings of carbs. You would look at the back of your foods nutritional label and follow those serving size suggestions.
That’s it guys! I hope this has been insightful and helpful. Remember, there are so many ways to lose fat – choose the right one that fits for you and your lifestyle. If you’re ready to take your diet to the next level, email me for a custom macro and nutrition plan! I have a variety of plans available to fit your needs.
DISCLOSURE: This post contains affiliate links from Amazon which I may earn a small commission if you purchase from the link.