Estimating Portion Sizes

Visual portion size guide
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Estimating calories is a great skill to have, and that starts with understanding portion sizes.

The easiest method of figuring out calories is obviously weighing or measuring out servings, but that’s not always possible. If someone else is doing the cooking or you’re going out to a restaurant, you likely don’t have the luxury of measuring out a serving. Allow me to give you a hand. Heh.

Your hand is not going to give you exact measurements, but this is about estimating, not being perfect. If you know you have super skinny fingers (like me) then your fingertip is probably a little less than a teaspoon. If you have gigantic monster hands, your palm is going to be larger than someone with little baby hands. But generally speaking, we can use our hands to estimate portion sizes.

Your palm is great for measuring meat and can be used to roughly measure out a 3-4oz serving, which is the most common serving for cooked meat. Your full fist will be pretty close to one cup, which can be very useful for things like rice or pasta.

If you’re curious how accurate this is, measure out a serving of various foods and compare it against this guide. While it is likely not exact, in most cases, it should be pretty close!

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