Tricks to help you eat less

Cutting down your portion size is a quick and simple way to start taking control of your health and weight, while getting all the nutrition you need. Here are some tips and tricks to help you break supersized habits and make it easier to eat less. Come on, let’s do this!

Shrink your plate
Big plates often lead to big portions, so try using a smaller plate or bowl to help you cut down at mealtimes.

Banish the bread basket
Portion sizes can easily creep up when you eat out. Avoid temptation by having less on your plate; say no to the bread basket, cut out the side orders, or ask for a smaller portion.

Take a doggy bag
Spread the joy of a meal out by eating only enough to feel full, and taking the rest home to have the next day. Most cafes and restaurants will be more than happy to put your leftovers in a tub for you to take away.

Keep a healthy balance
Help to control your portions of each kind of food with the rule of thirds. That’s veg making up one third of your meal, one third starch (eg potatoes, pasta, rice), and one third protein (eg meat, fish, pulses).

Fill up on fibre
You don’t have to eat too much to feel satisfied. Swap to high fibre foods that will fill you up for longer, like wholemeal toast, brown rice, or skin-on potato wedges instead of chips.

Don’t miss meals
Avoid going for long periods without eating or skipping meals, as you’ll be more likely to pile your plate the next time you eat. Eat small, regular, meals with healthy snacks in between if you need something.

Go easy on the oil
Cooking with oil tonight? Portion sizes aren’t just about what you can see on your plate – so use a measuring spoon to make sure you’re not overdoing the cooking fat. One tablespoon of oil should be enough to cook a family meal.

Avoid the packet trap
Don’t eat out of a packet, as you’re likely to eat more than you need. Pour your portion into a container and put the packet out of sight.

Wait minutes for seconds
Stop and wait before you re-fill your plate. It can take a little while for our brain to realise when we’re full after eating. Eat slowly, then stop and wait 20 minutes to see if you really need that second helping.

Keep serving bowls off the table
When food is left in front of you it’s very easy to dig in for more. Serve up and then take the dishes away, out of sight, to help you resist temptation.

Keep leftovers
Avoid picking at tasty leftovers by clearing away straight after meals. You can save money too, by putting leftovers in the fridge to eat the next day.


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