Portion Distortion

Part of the 12 Aspects of Successful Weight Loss. 

Portion Control isn’t actually one of my 12 Aspects of Successful Weight Loss, BUT, it affects several of the themes such as number 5. Appetite and Hunger and number 9. Reduced Calorie Diet.

So here is a easy, quick and familiar way to judge a portion size!

Most people who are overweight eat the wrong foods at the wrong time of day. They also eat too much of any one thing. My mission, as you know is to re-educate and inspire you to take control and reach a  healthier weight… so you can feel GREAT!

This list is for the average woman aged 35-55 who wants to lose weight. For the average man aged 35-55, use this guideline then double it! I hear a lot of my clients say they feed their partners ‘more’ when preparing meals, but hardly ever are their portions half of their partners… food for thought 🙂

A sandwich should be the size of two packs of playing cards lying next to each other – width and height.

A portion of soup should be the size of a cricket ball.

A portion of rice should be no bigger than a light bulb.

Jacket Potatoes
It’s easy to get carried away with potato portions, but your jacket should be no bigger than the size of a computer mouse.

It’s difficult to stop once you’ve started on the dips, so make sure you only eat an amount the size of a packet of dental floss.

Lean Lamb or Beef
If you’re having a meat and two veg dinner, make sure the meat part of the meal is no bigger than a deck of playing cards.

Oil and Salad Dressings
A healthy salad can soon balloon in calories if you pour an oily dressing all over it. Be strict with your portions and make sure you measure out dressing or oil to a dollop the size of a two pound coin.

A portion of dry pasta should be the size of a cricket ball, maybe try some gluten-free pasta too.

Fish and Seafood 
Great if you’re dieting as it’s low in fat and calories. But, you still need to watch your portions. Make sure your piece of fish is no bigger than two decks of playing cards.

Sliced Cold Meats
Ham, chicken, turkey… cold cuts make great meals at any time of the year, just make sure your portion is no bigger than a DVD.

Nuts are great snacks for dieters as they release their energy slowly, keeping hunger at bay. But they’re also high in fat, so make sure you only have a golf ball size portion.

Strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries are perfect snacks for anyone on a healthy eating plan, but make sure your portion is no larger than a cricket ball.



  1. Assess your own Portion Control – taking photos of everything you eat is a great way of assessing your intake at the end of a day. The camera never lies, right?!
  2. Revisit my 150 Star Foods – Barbara Cox for a list of beautiful, nutritious foods to inspire you to add variety to your diet. 
  3. Use the Weekly meal planner to create focus, yes, even now – the week before Christmas!.




One Comment Add yours

  1. Yvonne Dobson says:

    Tremendous information Barbara. Many thanks.


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