SIOUX FALLS, SD - If you think the restaurant portion sizes are big and getting, you're right. Many times a restaurant meal contains three or even four times the recommended portions.
Portion distortion isn't limited to eating out; size can also matter when you eat at home.
Brad Steckelberg is on a mission to lose weight and lead a healthier life. But he knows to do that, he has to eat proper portion sizes.
"Especially if you're going to a restaurant, when I sit down and order, I never think about how many portions they're going to serve me," Steckelberg said.
But it is something you should think about because sometimes one meal can contain all the calories you should eat in a day.
Avera Heart Hospital Dietitian Joanne Shearer says portion distortion is a serious problem and a major contribution to the nation's obesity epidemic.
"Restaurant portions have come increasingly larger and larger. People think they're getting a greater value for their dollar if they get a bigger and bigger portion size. So, restaurants have responded to that, but as a result, the restaurant portions sizes become three to four times the standard portion," Shearer said.
Even at home, portion sizes have changed and chances are, so have your dishes.
"Get smaller plates and bowls, so therefore psychologically you think you're eating more," Shearer said.
Shearer also recommends measuring how much food you eat and asking for a to-go box as soon as you get your meal at a restaurant.
"Another strategy, if you're bringing home a bag of potato chips, instead of eating out of the bag, take a handful and put it on your plate," Shearer said.
Which Steckelberg says has been a piece of cake compared to sizing up a restaurant meal.
"I have this tendency to just want to eat everything that they serve and not think about taking some home, because you just don't think about that," Steckelberg said.
But it's a thought that could help trim your waistline and improve your health.
Portion control is also the focus of Mission Nutrition this week, a competition among people in the area set up by Avera Heart Hospital.
Casey Wonnenberg is taking part in the journey to get healthy. To follow her "like" the KELO Casey Wonnenberg page on Facebook
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