If a few pounds have piled on but a summer full of lettuce leaves and rice cakes isn?t for you ? we are here to help! The goods news is that there is no need for your favourite foods to become fond memories, in fact many nutrition experts now believe that successful and sustainable weight loss can be a achieved through merely understanding and sticking to sensible portions sizes.

It’s true. Many of us often eat more than we need to, and this can be as big an obstacle to weight control as what we eat. You may have noticed that when eating out, the plates are over-filled with food and then there is usually an added side dish holding more chips, vegetables or sauces than you really need or than you could possibly eat??although if its there we will generally give it a go! Unfortunately we seem to have taken this habit for supersizing into our own kitchens and seem to have lost sight of how much is enough. This is a habit that needs to change if you are serious about your weight loss.

It’s easy to control portions without resorting to weighing and measuring with just a few simple steps:
?  The simplest way to reduce the amount of food on your plate is to use a smaller plate in the first place. This will not only make your plate look fuller, but will automatically reduce the amount you put onto it.
?  Start each meal with a salad, or eat some of your vegetables before your meat/potato portion to help fill you up with low calorie foods first
?  Once you have finished your serving of food wait at least ten minutes before considering a refill. This will give your stomach time to tell your brain whether it is full or not. A healthy sense of satiety should be a feeling of satisfaction ? if you feel bloated or uncomfortable you have eaten more than you need
?  You can also get used to cooking less food in the first place. If you are just cooking for yourself, and you know that you often cook more than you need, then automatically reduce everything by one third. This will not only help you save money but will help you to control your eating
?  Drinking a small glass of water before a meal can also help to fill you up and reduce the need for additional food.
?  When you’re eating out, choose smaller dishes, or eat from the starter menu. If you’re out with a friend, get something to share and order a salad or vegetables on the side. Alternatively, order a normal meal, but only eat what you need to and don?t be afraid to leave the rest.

Ultimately, getting a healthy diet is about getting the right foods in the right amounts. Here are a few tips to bear in mind when you are next dishing-up..
?           The meat or other protein-based part of your meal should be around the size of a deck of cards.
?           The starchy part of your meal, for example: the rice, potatoes, bread or grains should be around the size of one tennis ball or your balled fist.
?           If possible, fruits and vegetables should fill around half of your plate.
?           Fats and oils should be kept to a minimum, for example: less than one tablespoon. Always measure them out on a tablespoon as it is easy to over pour straight from the bottle.

An example

Take one meal using different ratios of each food

Meal 1



Meal 2



Chicken breast (size of a pack of cards)



Chicken breast (large)



2 boiled potatoes



3 boiled potatoes



« cup of broccoli



¬ cup of broccoli



« cup of cabbage



¬ cup of cabbage



« cup of carrots



¬ cup of carrots



¬ cup of gravy



¬ cup of gravy



125ml glass of white wine



175ml glass of white wine



2 squares of chocolate



1 bar of chocolate










Foods to Indulge in

Weight loss should not just be about limiting intake, it can be about adding certain weight loss enhancing foods into your diet. Here are a few tips to try:

?           Snack attack ? eating smaller amounts regularly can reduce sweet cravings and blood sugar slumps, one of the causes of weight gain
?           Be creative ? add a variety of colourful fruit and vegetables to all your meals such as fruit on your breakfast cereal, or salad to sandwiches
?           Binge on metabolism boosters ? chillies, lemons and green tea have all been found to boost metabolism so try a glass of lemon juice and warm water to start the day
?           Lecithin is more ? try sprinkling a tbsp of lecithin granules on your breakfast or over salads. Lecithin contains a type of lipid called phospholipids which help carry excess cholesterol and saturated fats to the liver for removal from the body
?           Ensure you get your micronutrients ? certain nutrients such as magnesium, B vitamins and chromium help you digest and absorb your food properly making sure carbohydrate and fat are utilised instead of stored. So include dark green leafy vegetables, beans, tomatoes, onions, seeds, nuts
?           Protein ? have some protein with every snack and meal as this will help you feel fuller for longer


If you want to eat more?.you need to exercise more. Exercise increases your metabolism and burning off excess fat. When is the best time to exercise? Our metabolism slows down about 8 hours after we wake up, so 30 minutes of exercise in the evening, before dinner will increase your metabolism for about two to three more hours just when it was starting to slow down. This produces a significant increase in fat burned off, even after the exercise is over.