When you’re trying to watch what you eat, every little trick can help. That’s exactly why it makes sense to cultivate simple, healthy habits (like these!) that push you to eat more mindfully. Small steps make a big difference over time!
Here’s one tip we love at dinnertime: Portion your plate at the counter instead of bringing everything to the table. By avoiding the family-style options at your fingertips, you make it a little easier to skip extra helpings.
Individual plating v. family-style meals
When you’re cooking for a crowd, family-style eating isn’t the only way to go. Sure, putting all the dishes on the table makes them accessible. But, when it comes to meal portions, easy access is part of the problem. When another helping of mashed potatoes or cornbread is only a reach away, you grab extra bites without thinking. If you place all the dishes up on the counter, however, you have to get up to serve yourself. This means, to grab another bite, you have to think before you eat. You have time to decide—do I really need that second helping of Pineapple Sheet Cake? (Sometimes you do!)
Setting an extra step between you and extra helpings
Keeping food up at the counter instead of nearby at the table seems like a small change, and it is. But it’s also one extra step between you and another helping, which means it’s one extra opportunity to avoid mindless consumption. When you finish the food on your plate, you won’t naturally grab another scoop of the food that’s next to you at the table. Rather, you’ll be forced to consider whether you do or don’t need another bite. Over time, as you reduce those bonus nibbles at dinnertime, you’ll be cutting your calorie consumption, too.
Could this simple trick of counter serving add up to a big difference in your life? Try it and see!
And if you’re looking for other ideas for healthy eating, check out these 53 healthy potluck recipes.