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The Portion Distortion Guide

A List of Serving Sizes


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  • i think i will stick with measuring and weighing because i don't know how big a billiard ball is or how to pour 1 hockey puck of juice
    totally agree with the measurments...
  • Very sports-centric. I prefer to weigh and measure whenever possible.
  • I agree with the previous post about the palm of you're hand, especially for a piece of steak about the size of you're palm.
    Pretty much what I've learned is to never eat anything with a portion size bigger than your palm or fist. Keep it little. What can fit in the your palm is usually 3 -4 oz or a 1/2 cup from what someone told me.
    I'd prefer a list with the foods' recommended weight in grammes or at least ounces, so I can convert them. I'm from Central Europe, we don't measure in cups or base balls...actually, I'm not into sports and base ball isn't popular here, so I have no idea how big it is and what's the difference to a billiard ball? And as somebody said, you can always cheat a little with cups etc. (just stuff it!), but you can't cheat with we all know to well.
  • I don't have billiard balls or baseballs on hand, nor can I picture what size they are - just not into sports!
  • I'm afraid that I just measure things using scales and measuring cups. Actually, if I am truly honest, most of my meals involve the words "microwave until hot" and I just trust that the nutritional information on the side of the box is accurate.
  • Obviously the person who developed this list is into sports. LOL!!
  • I don't think I'll ever understand using volume to measure a hypothetical "portion". If we're talking grains the volume of a billiard ball, I can pack them so that twice as much is still the size of a billiard ball. This is why my food scale is my best weapon here. It never lies and I can't make it cheat. A cup of sugar? I can make that weigh two vastly different numbers if I want. 100g of sugar will always be 100g of sugar. This amorphous, arbitrary notion of "portions" just muddies the dietary water for me.
  • Vegetables the size of a billiard ball?! As much juice as a hocky puck? LOL -- who thinks this stuff up?

    The basic message, that portion size is critical, is sound. Some of the visualizations suggested are just plain funny.
  • LOL! I work at a store that specializes in billiards, and we also sell ping pong, hockey pucks, and baseballs. We also sell bowling balls and I'm glad to see there are no portions of that magnitude! This is very helpful!
  • SHIMSHIM4452
    I will just say for myself rather than me getting all into the specific...If I can come even close to what the guide line says about eating and portion control...I still will be much better off than I was before. Gluttony is probably most of our issues - God can bring us through anything all we have to do is ask and believe...So, yes The Portion Distortion Guide was great for me. Thanks Sparks for your dedication to health.
    I can't picture a hockey puck's worth of juice. I can't picture the difference between a baseball and a billiard ball. I think other physical items should have been used for comparisons. These were too abstract and besides that, who drinks a beverage from a hockey puck shaped beverage container?
  • Great article, but I do agree with those who question comparing liquids to the solids (baseball, hockey puck, etc.) When eating out you can't really measure your portions, so most of these visualizations will help you eat a proper portion, but if you have trouble visualizing the listed solids and/or remembering which one to use on what food, try visualizing the amount that would fit in the palm of your hand, especially on high carbohydrate foods and meats. Fruits and veggies you can have more, but watch the dressings and sauces! Your hand is always with you and is right in front of you so visualization is much easier.

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