Seeking Balance?Charlie Gutierrez
As the Holiday months approach, you’re probably questioning whether or not to indulge in those mouthwatering family dinners?
Did you spend all summer staying on track or maybe even just beginning a health journey? Whatever part of the path you’re on, the fear of ruining your health goal progress or putting on unwanted lbs is top of mind.
In this week’s blog, I’m going to reveal how you can enjoy those holiday meals while achieving a healthy & happy lifestyle. This is what is referred to as “BALANCE”. First, we’ll identify what balance is, and second, how easy it can be to create it.
For those impatient readers, I’ll leave you with a “handy” method on how to create a happy & healthy balance in your life. We’ll do this using a simple portion-size visualization method.
MEASUREMENT METHOD: “Balance by Hand”
Use your hand as a general size representation to visualize measurements of proteins, veggies, & carbohydrates. By doing this, you’re now able to form healthy portion sizes on the go. We’re not looking to be exact but rather sticking to a general metric range.
PALMED HAND: Use the surface area of your palm to visualize measurements of proteins such as meat, fish, eggs, dairy, & beans.
Note: the goal is a 3-5oz serving and should look relative in size/thickness of your palm.
CUPPED HAND: Use the area of your cup-shaped hand to visualize measurements of carbohydrate-dense foods such as oats, starches, & fruit.
Note: the goal is a 1-3 oz serving.
THE FIST: Use the size of your first to visualize measurements of veggies.
Note: the goal is a 0.5-1 cup serving.
THE THUMB: Use the area of your thumb to visualize measurements of fats such as oils, sauces, salad dressings, & nuts.
Note: the goal is a 1 tbsp serving.
SERVING SIZE BY GENDER
MEN: I recommend having 1-2 servings of each ingredient listed above per meal.
WOMEN: I recommend having 1 serving of protein & carbohydrates, and 1-2 servings of vegetables & fats.
WHAT IS BALANCE?
Throughout the years of nutrition coaching, one of my roles is creating a health journey roadmap for our fellow Foodies. During earlier years, the bulk of client health goals were based upon physique (weight loss/muscle gain). Post covid, there’s been a growing number of clients wanting health while not sacrificing those joys of eating out or drinking a favorite beverage.
I realized, what they were seeking is simply a balanced lifestyle. The average person doesn’t desire to eat a strict/boring meal plan and working out like a navy seal every day. Having balance is creating the ability to eat the foods you love and still be healthy. And no, this isn’t the true definition. This is how I define balance when speaking about dieting, which is another topic I’ll address in a future post.
So, how exactly is the balance achieved then? The science is confusing but the method is made easy.
ARE YOU BALANCING or NAH?
Do you enjoy eating pasta once/twice a week? Cool. Have it. You don’t eat salmon anymore because your friend read that fat is bad for you? Well, your friend isn’t entirely correct.
Your body needs the omega 3 fatty acids from the salmon for many reasons. Fats help maintain your cholesterol levels and decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease. There’s much more to fats, how it works, and what it does. We’ll dig into this topic as well in a future post.
- The key to having the foods you love is portion control. There’s a saying I express in relation to portion control, “the dose makes the poison”. This is a short version of what was said by a toxicologist, ~Paracelsus. But how is this relative?
- Think of your plate as the pill. The amount of food you place on your plate is the dose.
- Are you adding portions the size of the center plate or are you piling it on the size of a mountain?
If you answered yes to the first part, then perfect! You’re practicing balance. If you’re the mountain size portion, then the balance isn’t a card in your deck.
Measuring your food will help prevent overeating. You’re probably thinking, “Ain’t nobody got time to measure food!”. There’s no need for a scale and measure every single piece of food on your plate.
The idea is to remain in a general range, based on eating proteins, veggies, & carbohydrates.
For this, all you need is the “Balance by Hand” method noted above. If you simply don’t want to deal with cooking or measuring, Foodie Fit does all the portioning for you with ready heat & eat meals. But don’t take my word for it 😉
Practice using your hand as your measuring tool for 30 days. I’d love to hear how this works out for you or if even you have questions. firstname.lastname@example.org
I hope this has helped you gain understanding & technique to portioning. The goal is to eliminate overeating, reduce the risk of hindering current health progress, but most importantly, the ease of knowing you can enjoy eating the foods you love.
Stay happy & healthy Foodies!