It’s no secret that the size of the average adult has expanded over the last forty years…and studies show that potion sizes have grown right along with us.

Researchers from NYU found that average portion sizes started to grow in the 1970’s, rising quickly in the 1980’s…. and this phenomenon hasn’t shown signs of slowing.

A large order of French fries from McDonalds’ weighs the same as 1998’s Supersize fries.

And it doesn’t stop there…

Check out these eye-opening figures, provided by the National Institute of Health:

  • Today’s 6-inch bagel has 350 calories. This is 210 more calories than a 3-inch bagel 20 years ago.
  • Today’s 5 ounce muffin has 500 calories. This is 310 calories more than muffin 20 years ago.
  • Today, a large cookie has about 275 calories. This is 200 more calories more than a cookie 20 years ago.
  • Today, a 3 cup chicken Caesar salad has 790 calories. This is 400 more calories more than Caesar salads 20 years ago.

Obesity is on the rise because people eat too many calories and do not exercise enough.

Portion control is a very important factor for losing weight, but to attain a slim and healthy physique exercise is also a must.

But first, here’s how to handle today’s extra-large portions…

#1 – Stop Cleaning Your Plate

Our mothers did a great job when they taught us to “clean our plates.” The problem now lies in the fact that our plates are usually loaded with more than 3 times the calories we really need.

So what’s the solution?

Realize that it is O.K. to leave food on your plate. Don’t throw it out – just save it for later!

Eating everything on the plate may have become a habit for some, but it is a habit that can be broken.

Focus on how you feel halfway through your meal. Are you full? If you are beginning to feel full then stop eating. (Don’t worry—your mom won’t send you to your room!)

#2 – Slow Down

Eat your next meal slower than usual.

Chew each bite thoroughly, engage in conversation and pay attention for signs that you may be getting full. Once you realize that you are full, stop eating. Congratulations—you just tailored your portion down to its proper size.

#3 – Go Halfsies….

if you’re outdoor dining.

The next time you go out to eat, share an entrée with your guest(s) and order salad or soup to start your meal. This will cut your calories down dramatically, while still giving you the satisfaction of clearing your plate. If sharing isn’t an option then ask the server for a take-out box along with your order. As soon as the food arrives, put half in the box.

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