I’m trying to pay more attention to serving sizes. Are they listed on most foods? Clarissa, Minn.
You’ll find serving sizes right at the top of the nutrition label on all packaged foods. It’s a great guide for helping you make good choices. You may find some surprises, too, since some small packages can contain more than one serving.
Serving sizes are given by weight or volume (such as 4 ounces), measurement (such as 1 cup) or quantity (such as 20).
I keep hearing about portion sizes, but I don’t know what the right size is. Can you help?
Fort Scott, Kan.
You’re right. Knowing what a serving looks like, even of foods you eat every day, can be confusing. And if you’re trying to get a handle on your eating habits, knowing the correct serv-ing sizes is a great place to start.
Since most of us don’t carry around a set of measuring cups or a scale, these visual clues can help you judge serving size:
• 1/2 cup: Fruit or vegetable that fits in the palm of your hand.
• 1 cup: About the size of a wo-man’s fist, light bulb or tennis ball. One cup of cereal fills half of a standard cereal bowl. One cup of broccoli or other fresh veggies is about the size of a light bulb. One cup of pasta, rice or potatoes is about the size of a tennis ball.
• 1 1/2 ounces cheese: About the size of a computer floppy disk, two dominoes or the width of two fingers.
• 1 teaspoon butter or peanut butter: About the size of the top half of your thumb.
• 1 teaspoon oil: A pool about the size of a quarter.
• 1 ounce nuts: Fits in the palm of your hand.
• 2 ounces meat: A small chicken leg, 1/2 cup cottage cheese or tuna.
• 3 ounces meat, fish or poultry: About the size of a deck of playing cards, audio cassette or personal digital assistant. Three ounces of chicken is one-half of a breast or a small leg and thigh. Three ounces also is one medium chop, one small hamburger or one unbreaded fish fillet.
• 1 small banana: About the size of an eyeglass case.
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