Set the Table: How Plates and Silverware Contribute to Overeating

When you’re starting a healthy diet, silverware and plates are typically not the first topics on your mind. However, if you’re worried about losing weight, shaping up and getting a more toned body, diningware deserves your attention. Recognize how utensils and plates can contribute to overeating and take proactive measures to prevent these things from interfering with your weight loss and healthy eating goals.

Feeling Full and Overeating

A general problem that causes overeating is that you may not feel full until 20 to 30 minutes after you’ve had your fill. Since you may still feel hungry (or at least not full) for a while, you can forget to watch your portions and continue to eat seconds or thirds and then even add dessert. Because you won’t be able to rely on your body to give you the signal to stop eating, you’ll have to pay close attention to how much you’re eating.

Plates and Portions

The size of your plate can make a great difference when it comes to the amount of food you eat. For example, if you have only “one or two” portions of food (refilling your plate only once or not refilling your plate at all), it sounds like you’ve got your eating habits under control and aren’t in danger of overeating. But if your plates are so large that you can fit huge portions of food on them, just one or two servings of food can be equal to four or five servings on a smaller plate.

Say you make a box of mashed potatoes, for example, and you learn that there are 80 calories in one serving, which doesn’t sound so bad. However, if you have a larger plate, you could easily wind up eating five or six servings with just one or two portions.

Utensils and Portions

Similarly to plates, silverware can cause you to grab larger portions than you need to keep you full. Opting for large serving spoons or larger forks and spoons means that your portions will be large. You can solve this problem by opting for smaller utensils; in fact, if you’re serious about keeping your portions under control, choosing silverware aimed at young children can prove to be just the right small size to ensure that you’re not eating too much food at once.

Utensils and Eating Too Quickly

Although it’s an improvement over eating food with your hands, using silverware can also make it too convenient for you to eat too much food too quickly. If you take conscious control over your eating habits, this shouldn’t pose a problem; however, coupled with the fact that it takes a while before your body tells you that it’s full, it can be difficult to avoid eating food too quickly with utensils. If you want a challenging way to eat food that helps you eat slower and with smaller portions, try using chopsticks instead of silverware. Not only will you have better control over your eating habits, but you’ll also feel more cultured.

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