How do you know how much to eat without counting calorie? Say goodbye to the food scale and relearn to eat healthy with a nutritional intake that’s adapted to your personal needs, thanks to my four tips for eating the correct quantities.
And don’t forget to download the Nutri Coach App for everyday help with your diet!
1. Use your hands to balance the proportions on your plate
To ensure that your plate is well-balanced without having to weigh things, use your hands!
- Two full hands for legumes and/or raw vegetables.
- The palm of the hand (no fingers) for proteins (vegetable or animal).
- One hand for starches (potatoes, pasta, rice, bread, quinoa, semolina, etc.).
- One finger for fats (a small piece of cheese or avocado or a drizzle of olive oil).
If you want to eat a dish containing a lot of cheese (for example), I recommend removing the fat from one meal, so you can double it on the next. The goal is to have a specific daily balance of these elements: legumes/raw vegetables – starches – proteins – fats.
2. Sleep well to eat the correct quantities
Here’s a bit of an odd tip, but I’ll tell you what the connection is between sleep and food.
Feelings of hunger and fullness are closely linked because they’re actually hormonal!
The hormone leptin lets us know when we’re full or not hungry, and ghrelin lets us know when we’re hungry. It’s important to know that a lack of sleep interferes with the production of leptin. It therefore becomes impossible to feel full; we only feel the hormone ghrelin, which makes us feel hungry.
Have you ever noticed that on days when you’re tired, you have a tendency to snack more? Now you know why!
3. Recognize the TRUE feeling of hunger
Hunger occurs about 3 to 4 hours after your last meal. If the elapsed time is shorter, it’s perhaps because you just feel like eating, not because you’re truly hungry (maybe due to a lack of sleep, or you’re stressed, etc.).
Or perhaps you didn’t eat enough at your last meal and because of that, you truly are hungry.
In this case, you’ll need to readjust the quantity of your meals. To do so, the Nutri Coach App can really help you, whether with finding the right quantities, understanding if you’re eating enough or getting recipe ideas tailored to your needs.
Coming in below your nutritional needs once in a while isn’t bad, but if it happens on a regular basis, it could be the reason for weight gain! I invite you to read the article “Dieting is a Bad Idea” to better understand how (even mild) malnutrition is harmful.
4. Eating the right amount
To get closer to the ideal amount of nutrition on your plate, you need to train yourself to recognize the feelings of hunger and fullness.
To do so, you need to slow down the pace of your meals. This allows the brain to understand what’s happening.
Tip: Between each bite, put down your fork and take time to chew thoroughly before swallowing. Focus on all aspects of the food you’re eating: the taste, the smell, the texture, the sound of the food in your mouth, the way it looks on the plate, etc.
This little exercise will actually lead you to a state of mindfulness, where you’ll be able to really feel if you’re still hungry or not. Listen to yourself. If you’re still hungry, eat a bit more. If not, stop, even if your plate isn’t quite yet empty.