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Keeping Track of Diet Portions the Easy Way

Keeping Track of Diet Portions the Easy Way

The most basic premise of losing weight is to make sure that the amount of calories you take in is less than the amount you burn. You can do this through exercise and calorie counting. One of the hardest parts of any diet is to keep track of your calories or portions. Toss out the measuring cups and simply use your hands to easily measure the diet portions you can take in at every meal.

One appealing part of using this system to measure your food portions; no matter where you are and what situations you’re in, you’ll always have your hands with you to measure with. Another reason—this form of measuring is custom-sized just for you, making every portion ideally sized.

Take note: the portions are units of measurement. Men will need two portions in general, whereas women will only need one portion.

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A palm represents your protein portion

Open Palm

    The recommended portion of meat in a meal is approximately 3 ounces or the size and weight of a deck of playing cards. Your palm without fingers is a close approximation to this.

    Best for:

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    • Beef
    • Pork
    • Poultry
    • Fish

    A fist is a unit for your vegetable/pasta and ice cream portion

    Fist
      Approximately one cup of cooked vegetables is the recommended size measurement a person needs to take in a day. That’s about the size of your closed fist.

      Best when used for:

      • Beverages
      • Cereals
      • Fruits
      • Salads
      • Soups
      • Caseroles
      • Cereals

      A cupped hand represents your carb portion

      Credit goes to http://www.flickr.com/photos/riot/
        Half a cup of carbohydrates is what’s recommended in a proper diet portion. Half of the one cup/fist mentioned above is approximately what you would get with a cupped open hand.
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        Best for:

        • Pasta
        • Rice
        • Vegetables
        • Beans
        • Potatoes
        • Cooked Vegetables
        • Pudding
        • Ice cream

        Your thumb represents your fat portion.

        Thumbs up
          Anything rich in fat such as peanut butter or nuts is recommended to be approximately the size of a tablespoon. Your thumb can approximate for that measurement, making it easy to keep from going overboard with foods high in fat.

          Best for:

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          • Salad Dressing
          • Peanut Butter
          • Sour Cream
          • Cream Cheese

          You can use your thumb to get a further measurement for the more fatty foods like butter and mayonnaise. The very tip of your thumb approximates one teaspoon.

          Best for:

          • Butter
          • Margarine
          • Mayonnaise
          • Oil

          For Cheese, use your fingers

          Hand and Fingers
            • Cheese– A portion of cheese should be approximately the same size as two fingers placed together.

            Based on the guidlines above, and assuming you’ll be eating about 3-4 times a day, you’ll have an accurate amount how much protein, vegetable, carbs, and fat portions you need to eat at every meal—all without breaking out any measuring device.

            Extra tips for you:

            • Don’t eat from the bag. Use the serving sizes previously mentioned and portion out the snack into a small bowl. This will prevent you from being tempted into eating too much.
            • Serve food in smaller plates. Eat from a salad plate instead of a dinner plate—larger dinner plates will tempt you subconsciously to fill the empty space.
            • Keep serving dishes on the counter instead of at the table. This will force you to get up for you to get seconds. Putting food out of reach makes it less tempting to possibly overeat.
            • Don’t snack in front of the television mindlessly. Eating or snacking mindlessly in front of the television or while performing other activities takes your mind—and focus—off of how much food you’re eating. Eat at the table to keep your focus and attention on your food so you’ll know when you’ve had enough to eat.
            • If you’re hungry between meals, eat a healthy high-fiber snack such as fruit, salad or broth-based soup (Cream-based soups don’t count!). The snack will fill you up so that you don’t eat too much at your next meal.

            Further details on these portions can be found here at Livestrong and Precision Nutrition. Even more detailed instructions and extra information can be found here at The U. K. Daily Mail and Medicine Plus

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            Last Updated on September 28, 2020

            The Pros and Cons of Working from Home

            The Pros and Cons of Working from Home

            At the start of the year, if you had asked anyone if they could do their work from home, many would have said no. They would have cited the need for team meetings, a place to be able to sit down and get on with their work, the camaraderie of the office, and being able to meet customers and clients face to face.

            Almost ten months later, most of us have learned that we can do our work from home and in many ways, we have discovered working from home is a lot better than doing our work in a busy, bustling office environment where we are inundated with distractions and noise.

            One of the things the 2020 pandemic has reminded us is we humans are incredibly adaptable. It is one of the strengths of our kind. Yet we have been unknowingly practicing this for years. When we move house we go through enormous upheaval.

            When we change jobs, we not only change our work environment but we also change the surrounding people. Humans are adaptable and this adaptability gives us strength.

            So, what are the pros and cons of working from home? Below I will share some things I have discovered since I made the change to being predominantly a person who works from home.

            Pro #1: A More Relaxed Start to the Day

            This one I love. When I had to be at a place of work in the past, I would always set my alarm to give me just enough time to make coffee, take a shower, and change. Mornings always felt like a rush.

            Now, I can wake up a little later, make coffee and instead of rushing to get out of the door at a specific time, I can spend ten minutes writing in my journal, reviewing my plan for the day, and start the day in a more relaxed frame of mind.

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            When you start the day in a relaxed state, you begin more positively. You find you have more clarity and more focus and you are not wasting energy worrying about whether you will be late.

            Pro #2: More Quiet, Focused Time = Increased Productivity

            One of the biggest difficulties of working in an office is the noise and distractions. If a colleague or boss can see you sat at your desk, you are more approachable. It is easier for them to ask you questions or engage you in meaningless conversations.

            Working from home allows you to shut the door and get on with an hour or two of quiet focused work. If you close down your Slack and Email, you avoid the risk of being disturbed and it is amazing how much work you can get done.

            An experiment conducted in 2012 found that working from home increased a person’s productivity by 13%, and more recent studies also find significant increases in productivity.[1]

            When our productivity increases, the amount of time we need to perform our work decreases, and this means we can spend more time on activities that can bring us closer to our family and friends as well as improve our mental health.

            Pro #3: More Control Over Your Day

            Without bosses and colleagues watching over us all day, we have a lot more control over what we do. While some work will inevitably be more urgent than others, we still get a lot more choice about what we work on.

            We also get more control over where we work. I remember when working in an office, we were given a fixed workstation. Some of these workstations were pleasant with a lot of natural sunlight, but other areas were less pleasant. It was often the luck of the draw whether we find ourselves in a good place to work or not.

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            By working from home we can choose what work to work on and whether we want to face a window or not. We can get up and move to another place, and we can move from room to room. And if you have a garden, on nice days you could spend a few hours working outside.

            Pro #4: You Get to Choose Your Office Environment

            While many companies will provide you with a laptop or other equipment to do your work, others will give you an allowance to purchase your equipment. But with furniture such as your chair and desk, you have a lot of freedom.

            I have seen a lot of amazing home working spaces with wonderful sets up—better chairs, laptop stands that make working from a laptop much more ergonomic and therefore, better for your neck.

            You can also choose your wall art and the little nick-nacks on your desk or table. With all this freedom, you can create a very personal and excellent working environment that is a pleasure to work in. When you are happy doing your work, you will inevitably do better work.

            Con #1: We Move a Lot Less

            When we commute to a place of work, there is movement involved. Many people commute using public transport, which means walking to the bus stop or train station. Then, there is the movement at lunchtime when we go out to buy our lunch. Working in a place of work requires us to move more.

            Unfortunately, working from home naturally causes us to move less and this means we are not burning as many calories as we need to.

            Moving is essential to our health and if you are working from home you need to become much more aware of your movement. To ensure you are moving enough, make sure you take your lunch breaks. Get up from your desk and move. Go outside, if you can, and take a walk. And, of course, refrain from regular trips to the refrigerator.

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            Con #2: Less Human Interaction

            One of the nicest things about bringing a group of people together to work is the camaraderie and relationships that are built over time. Working from home takes us away from that human interaction and for many, this can cause a feeling of loss.

            Humans are a social species—we need to be with other people. Without that connection, we start to feel lonely and that can lead to mental health issues.

            Zoom and Microsoft Teams meeting cannot replace that interaction. Often, the interactions we get at our workplaces are spontaneous. But with video calls, there is nothing spontaneous—most of these calls are prearranged and that’s not spontaneous.

            This lack of spontaneous interaction can also reduce a team’s ability to develop creative solutions—there’s just something about a group of incredibly creative people coming together in a room to thrash out ideas together that lends itself to creativity.

            While video calls can be useful, they don’t match the connection between a group of people working on a solution together.

            Con #3: The Cost of Buying Home Office Equipment

            Not all companies are going to provide you with a nice allowance to buy expensive home office equipment. 100% remote companies such as Doist (the creators of Todoist and Twist) provide a $2,000 allowance to all their staff every two years to buy office equipment. Others are not so generous.

            This can prove to be expensive for many people to create their ideal work-from-home workspace. Many people must make do with what they already have, and that could mean unsuitable chairs that damage backs and necks.

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            For a future that will likely involve more flexible working arrangements, companies will need to support their staff in ways that will add additional costs to an already reduced bottom line.

            Con #4: Unique Distractions

            Not all people have the benefit of being able to afford childcare for young children, and this means they need to balance working and taking care of their kids.

            For many parents, being able to go to a workplace gives them time away from the noise and demands of a young family, so they could get on with their work. Working from home removes this and can make doing video calls almost impossible.

            To overcome this, where possible, you need to set some boundaries. I know this is not always possible, but it is something you need to try. You should do whatever you can to make sure you have some boundaries between your work life and home life.

            Final Thoughts

            Working from home can be hugely beneficial for many people, but it can also bring serious challenges to others.

            We are moving towards a new way of working. Therefore, companies need to look at both the pros and cons of working from home and be prepared to support their staff in making this transition. It will not be impossible, but a lot of thought will need to go into it.

            More About Working From Home

            Featured photo credit: Standsome Worklifestyle via unsplash.com

            Reference

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