You can lose weight effortlessly by simply reducing your portion sizes.
You don’t have to go through the agony of extreme diets that ask you to eliminate entire food groups. Neither do you have to struggle with hunger all the time.
Using little-known secrets, you can reduce your food intake while maintaining a feeling of fullness all day long.
Once you learn how to control portions, losing weight will feel like child’s play. And you’ll be eager to step on the scale every morning to see how much weight you’ve lost.
Now, let’s look into the 15 effortless ways to reduce food portions without hunger.
How to Reduce Food Portions without Hunger
1. Fill up half of your plate with veggies
Vegetables are loaded with lots of filling fiber and water, but low in calorie content. You can start by replacing half the carbs in your meal with non-starchy vegetables.
Unfortunately, filling the plate up with veggies doesn’t do the magic for most people. They leave most of the veggies on the plate after eating the other foods. You can avoid this trap by eating veggies first.
2. Eat a small snack right before meals
You can take the edge off your meals by eating a small snack. However, the snack has to be healthy and low in calories.
Go for low-sugar, protein-laden snacks like boiled eggs, yogurt, nuts, olives, etc.
I may also note that eating fruit before meals offers tremendous benefits.
3. Drink 1-2 glasses of water before meals
Drinking lots of water right before your meal can fill you up significantly, thus reducing the likelihood of overeating.
One study found participants who drank 500ml or 2 glasses of water before every meal, lost 44 percent more weight compared to those who didn’t drink water before meals, over a period of 12 weeks..
Note that drinking water or fruit infused water with your meal can also help reduce your calorie intake.
4. Eat protein with every snack or meal
Studies have clearly shown that consuming protein increases feelings of fullness much more than fat or carbs.
You can take advantage of the hunger-fighting powers of protein by adding it to your snack or meal.
Choose lean protein such as seafood, fish, skinless poultry, dairy, and eggs. Bean dip, nut butter, tofu, and beans are excellent plant-based sources.
5. Use small plates
Research has shown that there is a correlation between the size of your plate how much you eat.
Most people tend to fill their plates, irrespective of the size, up to 70 percent with food.
This means you won’t eat the same amount of food when using a ten-inch plate compared to when using an eight-inch plate.
The more food you have on your plate, the higher the likelihood of eating more than you need.
Change your plate and utensils to small ones and you will surprisingly find that the same portion will look bigger.
6. Cook only as much as you need
You should only cook as much as you need per meal unless you plan to eat the food later.
Preparing excess food can make you feel guilty and duty-bound to finish everything in the pot.
7. Don’t skip meals
Do not skip any meal. You may end up piling your plate high with food and wolfing down more than you need.
Eat foods loaded with fiber, protein, and healthy fat in every meal. This strategy will prevent you from overeating.
The only time it’s okay to skip meals is when you’re fasting. If that’s the case, use any of these fasting methods.
8. Use measuring cups along with scales
You can make use of measuring cups, bowls, and scales to help you gauge recommended serving sizes.
This will prevent you from going overboard when serving your meals.
9. Spice up your meals
You can eat less if you spice up your meals. Chili peppers, for instance, contain capsaicin, a compound that helps reduce hunger and appetite.
However, if you feel you can’t stand the heat that hot pepper brings to the table, give ginger a try. Ginger also has a similar effect, and you can use it to spice up your meals as well.
10. Eat mindfully
Research shows that getting distracted while eating can lead to overeating. This is why the concept of mindful eating was developed to curb such occurrences.
Distraction is easy these days with the advent of the smartphone, TV, and hectic lifestyles. This can lead you to eat more than is necessary during meal times.
Mindful eating is simply paying rapt attention to what you eat without getting distracted. This helps you to notice your body’s hunger as well as fullness cues. You will end up knowing when you have had enough.
Boredom or emotions can also make you feel hungry. So, the next time you feel hungry, try different strategies before eating. You can go for a walk or take a cup of tea.
11. Eat slowly
This is not the same as mindful eating, but it is highly effective nonetheless. It takes a while for your stomach to signal your brain that you’re full.
You can use this to your advantage by slowing down the pace at which you eat.
You can do this in more than a few ways; combine these methods and be wowed by the effect:
- Use cutlery instead of your fingers
- Take small bites
- Put down your cutlery in-between mouthfuls
- Chew your food slowly
- Take a break during your meal. Sit back, relax for a while before you resume eating
- Sip lots of water throughout your meal
12. Eat more soluble fiber
Foods that are rich in fiber can help you feel full because soluble fiber holds a lot of water.
And when you eat fiber-rich foods, it transforms into a thick gel in your digestive tract. This helps in slowing down the process of digestion, thereby keeping hunger at bay.
Therefore, stock up your supplies with fiber-rich foods such as pears, oatmeal, beans, etc.
13. Never eat from the package
Eating from the package prevents you from seeing how much you are gobbling up.
You may end up eating double or triple the amount you usually consume if you served the food in a plate.
14. Brown bag your meals
When you “brown bag” your meals, you will consume less overall calories, according to reports.
So, pack your lunch in containers with several in-built sections. Then fill them with appropriate amounts of protein, grains, and veggies.
15. Never joke with serving size
Serving sizes are crucial and are usually listed on nutrition labels. It refers to the number of servings in a box or bag of food. There is a great deal of difference between portion size and serving size.
For instance, a snack bag of popcorn may contain 150 calories per serving. This means that if the snack bag contains two servings, the total number of calories will be 300. This is what you will consume if you finish the entire snack bag of popcorn at a sitting.
So always read nutrition labels so that you don’t end up consuming more than is right for your body.
Bonus: Limit your food choices
Keep a small variety of food in your kitchen. If your options are severely limited, you will not be tempted to overeat.
If you use these strategies, you can start losing weight effortlessly. And if you combine them with this weight loss plan, you can lose up to 10 pounds in the next 7 days.