Posted in Food & Health

Welcome to Hogville!

That’s how I felt when I double checked the recommended serving sizes for rice and pasta. Like a hog.  2 tbsp, surely that couldn’t be right?  But my query on twitter was followed up and I was directed to http://www.safefood.eu/en/Consumer/Healthy-Living/Eating-Well/Portion-sizes-how-much-is-enough/.
I’m not a nutritionist but I do think that I have a sensible approach to food.  If I’ve done the dog on it one day, like the Lily O’Brien’s truffle and the caramel squares I swiped off one of the children yesterday then I’ll try to make up for it the next day (30 sweaty minutes on the treadmill this morning).  I’ll try to be good.  But when it comes to dinner time I’ve yet to produce the weighing scales or measuring spoons when I dish out the portions.
So this morning I’ve measured out 2 tablespoons of rice which as you can see for yourself is tiny and as it fluffs up when it cooks even less is going to fit on 2 tbsp then.
2 tbsp rice
So what am I going to do with this advice?
Well the first thing to do was to investigate it further.  So I took a trip to the safefood site which linked to the weigh2live website with lots of useful information.
I was heartened to see that the portion size for starchy food is the size of a tennis ball.  Yes I’m guilty of dishing out a lot more than that but compared to 2 tablespoons it’s a bit more generous.
An interesting guideline for the amount of meat we should eat is to go with the palm of your hand, which to me makes sense as we’re all different sizes and our size should influence the amount that we need to eat.  The thing to remember about the protein advice though is that we are recommended two servings a day so even though a portion size for chicken would be half a small breast  of chicken that would be assuming that you’ve had another protein portion throughout the day perhaps cheese and ham at lunch or 2 eggs at breakfast.
It’s not all bad then.  In fact Cliodhna Foley-Nolan’s advice to use a smaller plate and divide it into three for protein, starch and vegetables is nice, simple and practical.
For further information pay a visit to www.safefood.eu
Til next time, Sheila.