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  • Writer's pictureAli

Hand Guide To Portion Control

Updated: Jan 11

Knowing what to eat is only half the battle when it comes to healthy nutrition. It is equally important to know how much to eat. Unfortunately, over time, food and drink portions have increased in size, leading to overeating. This is because the more food that is served on a plate, the more food we consume. 

However, with the proper awareness and a guide to managing portion sizes, we can eat healthily and maintain a balanced diet, developing a healthier relationship with food. One simple, effective, and proven method for achieving this is the Hand Portion Method. 

Using this method, you don't need to measure or weigh your food using technology. Instead, you can use your own hand to gauge the size of the portion. Your hands are proportional to your body and go with you wherever you go. This makes them the perfect tool to quickly and easily gauge your portion size, even when eating out. 

The Hand Portion Method is ideal for anyone who struggles with food-tracking apps and meal logs. It offers a habit-centric approach to meal planning and is a perfect way to build balanced meals. To get started, try following the simple steps below.


Protein is the most crucial nutrient for muscle building, nutrient transportation, enzyme function, and other essential functions in the body. However, in the Western diet, most meals are based on carbs, which are often highly refined and have a high glycemic index, causing hunger pangs soon after eating. 

To prioritize protein in your diet, you can use your hand to measure the portion sizes. 

One serving of protein can be measured as one palm for the average female and two palm sizes for the average male of meat, fish, dairy, or plant-based protein sources.


We all know that fruit and vegetables should be the foundation of a healthy diet. But do we really know why? 

In short, they provide essential micronutrients (e.g., vitamins and minerals), antioxidants, and fibre needed for energy production, immune function, control of inflammation, a healthy digestive system, and overall health. 

Some examples of fruit and veg portions: 

  • 1-2 handfuls of spinach in stir fry

  • Mixed garden vegetables

  • Chopped peppers/carrots and hummus 

  • Mixed fruit salad

  • Piece of fruit

  • Roasted sweet potato fries 


Carbs are NOT "bad" when portion control comes first. 

Yet, seeing one proper serving size of rice, pasta, or bread often comes as a surprise. It's smaller than you'd think. 

We recommend filling the plate up and adding the carbs last. You should always prioritize wholegrain or "brown" carbohydrate sources such as brown rice or pasta, quinoa, legumes, and sweet potato. 


When we say healthy fats, we mean unsaturated fats versus saturated. Dietary fat is beneficial to consume and essential for optimal health. We need fatty acids for several crucial functions, including the absorption of vitamins, the production of hormones, and cell protection. 

To measure fats, raise your hand in front of your face again. Stick out your thumb. Depending on your size, try incorporating 1-2 thumb sizes of fat into your meal. 

Such as cold-pressed virgin olive oil (for cooking), rapeseed oil (for cooking), coconut oil (saturated fat, but still good), a small handful of nuts (1-2 thumbs), seeds (flax, chia, etc.), avocado oil (for cooking), salmon, avocado. 


Written by Ali.

Live in Harmony Co-Creator


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