Healthy Dining Finder - What Are Recommended Portion Sizes?
 
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Registered Dietitians Answer Your Questions about Restaurant Nutrition

What Are Recommended Portion Sizes?


Portion sizes can be almost impossible to guess when you're dining out at a new restaurant (unless the guests at the neighboring table orders their meals first!).
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Portion sizes can be tricky, to say the least!  We all know that to maintain a healthy weight, it’s important to stick to appropriate portion sizes for various foods, but unless you plan on bringing a scale or a set of measuring cups wherever you go, sizes can be difficult to judge.  Restaurant meals, in particular, are often known for their larger portion sizes, and although it may feel like you’re getting a good deal when your server places a generous portion in front of you, your waistline or health might suffer over the long run.  

To maintain a healthy diet when enjoying a meal out, keep standard portion sizes in mind as represented by common, everyday objects.  Typically:
  • A portion of meat should be about the size of a standard deck of cards.
  • A portion of rice or pasta should be about the size of a computer mouse.
  • A portion of vegetables or fruit should be the size of a baseball.
  • A portion of cheese should be about the size of two dominoes.
  • A portion of beans should be about half the size of a baseball.
To enjoy your meal without going overboard, when restaurant portion sizes are larger than these recommended sizes, try splitting dishes with friends or having leftovers boxed up for an easy lunch the next day.  Check out these tips to eat out healthy at restaurants from our dietitians for more ideas.

See what our dietitians recommend as Healthy Dining menu choices in your area using the HealthyDiningFinder search.  Here are some of the dishes you may find near you:
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Registered Dietitians Answer Your Questions about Restaurant Nutrition

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