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  • "portion control"

    This is commonly suggested on diet and health related forums pretty much all over the Internet. My question: did it work for you? When you ate things like pizza or cookies or whatever, were you good to go so long as you only ate one?

  • #2
    I never really did "portion control" -- my sister did. She did calorie restriction, and portioned out everything that she ate. And, she did really well on it -- so long as she continued to do that. Which she didn't, so she gained everything back and is at her largest currently. Maybe second largest.

    For myself, I tend not to over eat these things unless I'm stress eating.

    Currently, I don't have pizza (pizza in this country is terrible), but I will have cookies on occasion. I usually go for raw ones, which are paleo in their ingredients. And I usually can't have many because they are so dense and filling.
    Last edited by zoebird; 12-15-2012, 02:52 PM.


    • #3
      If by "portion control" you mean portions that are weighed and/or measured prior to sitting down and eating, then no. Except that time I did Weight Watchers.

      If you mean serving myself a sensible portion of each food, and listening to my body before going back and getting more, then usually yes.
      *My obligatory intro

      There are no cheat days. There are days when you eat primal and days you don't. As soon as you label a day a cheat day, you're on a diet. Don't be on a diet. ~~ Fernaldo



      • #4
        Yes and no. Did it work when I did 1200 calories a day (1400 on Sat and Sun) for 15 months? Yes; I went from 236 pounds to 118 pounds. Did it work as a lifestyle? No. I absolutely have to count calories. My brain doesn't know a good portion. I can easily eat 12-15 oz of beef in a sitting, which is only ok if I haven't eaten anything else much for the day. One meal a day (known in some circles as IF) works for me with a couple of cups of espresso with half and half (measured) factored in. Whatever is "wrong" with me, I like large portions. Eating three ounces of fish, couched on a bed of greens - well I might as well pull my fingernails out for the joy and satitation that brings.

        When I was in college, I used to complain that I always put on weight when I tried to "get healthy." IOW three meals a day like the "experts" said. Why? Because when I ate what they said was healthy, I was left feeling deprived and unhappy. One meal a day, even if it was half of a large pepperoni and mushroom pizza, kept me thin.

        Oh, and when I did the 1200 calorie a day thing, I always got more than half my calories from my large meal at the end of the day.
        "Right is right, even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong, even if everyone is doing it." - St. Augustine


        Who says back fat is a bad thing? Maybe on a hairy guy at the beach, but not on a crab.


        • #5
          No, that didn't work for me. However, portion control along with primal living seems to be working. I can eat too much if I don't monitor myself. I'm using a calorie counter right now, and I'm going with what my trainer recommends, which is around 2,200 calories a day. That's quite a lot really. I keep shedding weight!
          Out of context quote for the day:

          Clearly Gorbag is so awesome he should be cloned, reproducing in the normal manner would only dilute his awesomeness. - Urban Forager


          • #6
            For a while I tried that, and for a while it did work. That was what you were "supposed to do", so I did. But then I started feeling so deprived that I slowly descended into binging every time I ate something that I considered "unhealthy". I figured the day was ruined diet-wise,so I'd go nuts. It was like a vicious cycle. Then I eventually read somewhere that some people are better to not eat anything at all, and the light bulb went on. From that moment on I've been an "all or nothing" kind of eater. If I can't access it or don't allow myself to have even a bite of it, then I'm good. It works so far! I feel like "portion control" works for some, but not others. And then those others don't understand what's wrong with them when they can't abide by it and decide to give up because they are convinced they will never lose weight. Portion control seems to be preached because no one wants to hear "sorry, you can't have pizza every day". My thoughts on it at least!


            • #7
              But it just makes such good sense. Let's all learn how to control our portions!
              Portion control for weight loss - YouTube


              • #8
                I IF naturally... it has just worked out that way.
                1-2 small cups of cafe breve around 10-11, 4-5 days a week. Just water the other days.
                Some days I don't even want to eat all of what I fix myself for my one evening meal.
                Other days I may end up having a small snack like a cup of yoghurt or an apple.

                Never any issue with any sort of binge at all. In fact quite the opposite.
                The longer I eat this way the less I find food appealing in that sense.
                Prior to eating 'Primal' I ate frequent small meals, had problems with afternoon blood sugar crashes, and binged regularly.
                “You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.”
                ~Friedrich Nietzsche
                And that's why I'm here eating HFLC Primal/Paleo.


                • #9
                  If I have enough fat in my diet, generally I am regulated on portion size naturally. If I have too much sugar or alcohol I tend to overeat. I have learned this through primal eating. I lose weight the best by eating mostly low carb and doing IF


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Sandra in BC View Post
                    If by "portion control" you mean portions that are weighed and/or measured prior to sitting down and eating, then no. Except that time I did Weight Watchers.

                    If you mean serving myself a sensible portion of each food, and listening to my body before going back and getting more, then usually yes.
                    This except add to weight watcher; Boots Diets (calorie counting) and slimming world (like weight watchers but with different coloured days and a £ cheaper
                    You know all those pictures of Adam and Eve where they have belly button? Think about it..................... take as long as you need........................


                    • #11
                      I think portion control/calorie counting is helpful for people who are looking to loose weight and trying to train themselves to eat more healthfully. It's particularly helpful for people who do overeat.

                      The problems of it is when people portion control unhealthy foods down to caloric restriction, which leaves them ver frustrated and hungry, and often malnourished.

                      When you focus on healthy foods, though, and find the right balance for you (fat/protein/carbs, and sources for all of these things so that you don't ahve stomach problems, etc), and THEN you retrain into the right caloric amounts, there is more chance of success.

                      But, you have to maintain it. And that's what works for people.

                      The problem is that most people diet, loose weight, and then go back to original eating habits. . . and there you go.


                      • #12
                        I think portion control as a diet strategy is not enough. As a training tool, though, I have found/find it very helpful. When I was still eating mostly SAD type stuff, I told myself repeatedly "4 bites is enough" and if I was paying attention, it often was. Then I graduated to "1 bite is enough" and that was true too a lot of times. I do think that the pressure of a calorie budget made me think much harder about what was "enough". If I had just been winging it, I'm pretty certain I would have talked myself into one more (or even more) bite without really weighing what it was worth.

                        It's also what brought me to primal eating, because when you can't eat unlimited quantities, you pay much closer attention to which foods keep you feeling full and which make restricted calories a misery. I had cut way back on grains before I ever heard of primal.

                        Now I usually have no problem eating one cookie, one small sliver of pie, one piece of candy. I did eat 6 conventional fig and almond biscotti last week (like some kind of sugar/wheat junkie), so every now and then, portion control fails me. The women I know who have been naturally slender all their lives naturally control their portions most of the time, so I'm not going to write it off just because I can't do it every single time.
                        50yo, 5'3"
                        CW-125, part calorie counting, part transition to primal
                        GW- Goals are no longer weight-related


                        • #13
                          Portion control has worked for me. I've called it "chronic restrained eating." I actually lost a lot of weight at one time going out to breakfast every morning and having a super huge scone with my coffee. The deal was I only ate half or less of the scone. Always eating a smaller portion worked great and I lost a lot of weight. I really should do it again since I've been gaining weight eating bigger portions. I've been eating bigger since I have been super hungry lately. Either that or I should try some kind of IF scheme, although my recent attempt at it didn't do anything for my weight at all.
                          Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.


                          • #14
                            I am still in weight loss mode, so I portion control everything. Well, not true. Just the last few days I quite worrying about my veggies. But everything else, I weigh it or measure it out, and I track it.

                            Only takes a second to weigh it. I use measuring cups instead of serving spoons. My scale does ounces and grams.

                            When I first started, I was measuring out serving sizes or trying to. I didnt see real progress until I started tracking.
                            65lbs gone and counting!!

                            Fat 2 Fit - One Woman's Journey


                            • #15
                              i'm not even trying to lose weight, but i still make an effort to control my portions. cause if i eat the 20oz ribeye at every meal, i'm sure as shit going to get fatter. some people - take me for example - will always have to consciously eat sensibly. maybe we're just natural gluttons or something; you know if you're one of us... we're not talking monk-like restraint or anything, but just a conscious effort to eat paleo in sensible amounts.