How to Measure Healthy Portions of Food with Your Hand

Jun 5 2020
Not sure how to eyeball a portion of food? Give yourself a hand -- literally! While a food scale, measuring cups, and measuring spoons will give you the most accurate info, sometimes you need an in-the-moment shortcut (or four!)…

Protein Portion (3 - 4 Oz.) = Your Palm

We’ve all been served an oversized cut of steak at a restaurant or stared down an enormous fillet of salmon. Before you dig in, glance at your palms. A single serving is around one palm’s worth. HG tip: Go for lean proteins, like skinless chicken breast, lean steak, shrimp, fish, and extra-lean ground meat.

Carb Portion (1/2 Cup) = Your Cupped Hand

If you hold out your hand in a cupped fashion, the amount it would hold can help you estimate a single portion of carbs. Look for whole grains like oatmeal and brown rice. Also in this category: beans, lentils, quinoa, pasta, and potatoes!

Veggie Portion (1 Cup) = Your Fist

Make a fist. No, you're not punching anyone… That's about how much veggies make up one serving. There are definitely exceptions to this guideline -- think leafy greens. And of course, there’s nothing wrong with having several servings of veggies at any given time!

Fat Portion (1 Tbsp.) = Your Thumb

Healthy fats are important and can help you feel full… but overdoing it can cause your daily calorie intake to skyrocket. That’s why we’re giving a thumbs up to this trick. One thumb is about equal to a portion of fat. If you have a tendency to idly snack on nuts, measure out your thumb-sized serving before you chow down. This is also a great visual trick for oil and cheese.

HG Heads Up: Remember, these are estimates… A food scale and measuring cups & spoons will always give you the most accurate info. Individual dietary needs will also vary from person to person. But in a pinch, these tricks can help!

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Chew on this:

It's the first Friday in June which means it's National Donut Day! Make a batch of these baked Glazy Maple Donuts ASAP.

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