The biggest problem many people have when they are on a diet is not what they’re eating, but how much they’re eating. A serving of salad dressing on your fresh vegetables is not going to break your daily calorie budget or overload you with carbohydrates and fat, but if you don’t measure out that salad dressing, you’re getting a lot of hidden carbs, fat, and calories you’re not counting. This can cause a serious problem for weight loss over time.
That’s why it’s important for you to use small containers when you meal prep. Not only do they help with portion control, but there are some other benefits to using smaller containers, too.
Small Containers Help with Weight Loss
Regulating your insulin and glucose production will usually reduce your food cravings because your body isn’t experiencing hypoglycemia. Consuming small portions curbs your cravings and helps reduce your overall calorie intake. Weight loss is just a simple mathematical equation. It’s eating fewer calories than you’re burning, and your body breaks down and stores fat in order to use it as energy.
Creating that calorie deficit will result in weight loss. To lose just one pound of fat, you have to trim out 3,500 calories from your diet. Cutting out five hundred calories a day should result in you’re losing one pound a week.
Counting your calories is as easy as counting your portions, and using smaller containers will help you do that.
Saves You Money
Not only is your body going to thank you for eating less, but your wallet will, too. Eating smaller portions helps you both physically and financially for obvious reasons.
One of the ways you can practice portion control at a restaurant is to order the kid-sized meal, which is usually less expensive than the full-sized adult meal. Due to portion sizes are restaurants being two to three times more per serving, when the food’s delivered to your table, ask the waiter for a takeaway container and remove half the food from your plate. While you might be paying for one meal, by taking half of your entrée home, you’ll be getting two or more meals for the price of only one meal.
Another way is to use the smaller containers and stretch your food out longer. By knowing what the portions are supposed to be and putting them into smaller containers, you’re stretching your food out longer.
Of course, using smaller containers will teach you more about what a serving of vegetables, meats, fruits, and more really is. You’ll be able to look at foods at a restaurant or when you’re at a buffet and know how much you can take in order to remain within your diet’s limits. For example, a serving of baked potato is about the size of your fist and a serving of cheese is about the size of a dice. A serving of peanut butter is two tablespoons, which is about the size of a ping-pong ball.
While you’re adjusting to eating less, switch to a smaller plate. The same amount of food is going to look like it’s more when it’s on a smaller plate. According to numerous studies, the more it looks like there is a lot of food on your plate, the less hungry you will feel. It becomes easier to maintain your portion sizes, then.
Glucose and Insulin Control
If you’re someone who suffers from high levels of glucose in your system, such as prediabetic or diabetic, then portion control with small containers will really help you out. Your body is turning the foods you’re eating into glucose, especially all those carbs.
While glucose is your body’s main fuel for energy, a spike in glucose levels is not good for anyone. Eating a large portion of food will cause your glucose levels to skyrocket quickly, which can cause a release of insulin from the pancreas, or not if you’re diabetic.
However, the faster the glucose levels rise, the more likely your pancreas is going to produce too much insulin, which leads to low blood sugar very quickly. Your brain will automatically think you need more glucose, and you’ll feel hungry again, craving sugar or fatty foods.
You can avoid this terrible cycle of high and low glucose levels by eating smaller meals more frequently. Eating smaller portion, but eating more times throughout the day, will keep your insulin and glucose levels stable.
Makes Meal Prep Easier
Of course, dishing your food out into containers and putting it back into storage makes life a lot easier. When you need to grab a few ingredients for dinner, you know exactly how much to put into your recipe. When you need to grab a few ingredients to make a lunch salad, you can pull out everything you want in your salad and know exactly how much to put in. Instead of dousing your salad in dressing, you’ll have the perfect amount of dressing and know you’re not overeating.
Using small containers to keep track of your portion sizes will make eating healthier a lot easier. So the next time you get a jar of spaghetti sauce, dish it out into small containers and store it in the refrigerator or the freezer, depending on when you think you’ll be using it. Don’t be afraid to break that bag of kale chips down into one serving sizes in little bags to keep track of how much you’re eating.
And most of all don’t be afraid to grab a snack and know you’re eating the right amount of food by using containers!