When I was thinking about what to write on the topic of portion size I decided to use Google images to help get the mental juices flowing. After some general browsing of images and some other websites, I came to a realization… What I call a snack is probably the recommended size for a meal. I started thinking about staff potlucks, Christmas dinners at home, hell even Sundays watching football. All the meals that take place in those circumstances are immensely out of proportion. Yes, those are one offs but the size of food I eat on a regular basis is out of whack as well. So I’m being genuinely honest when I say what I consider a snack is probably my recommended meal size. Exhibit A, Exhibit B, Exhibit C (Damn you twitpic)
Alright now that I’ve come to that
startling realization, how do I fix it? Eating has become a rite of passage, we tend to eat when we celebrate, then we celebrate people who eat… (Man v. Food). On top of that it has quasi masculine undertones to it, if you have a bird belly and don’t eat lots you’re a wuss or you’re tying to lose weight. When did eating a recommended healthy sized portioned meal turn into a diet craze?
What it really boils down to is self-control. Unlike the first two post in this series which touched on the media’s impact on body image and the cheap price of bad food. Portion size is something that is more in the realm of our control and isn’t directly influenced by the media or economics. If I spend $10.00 on a meal that’s massively over proportioned, I still have the choice to eat it all in one sitting or package half of it away and save it for tomorrows lunch. I believe this one falls squarely on our shoulders.
As people we all have the ability to eat less, so the question is why don’t we?
Here’s a thought, if we scaled back the portion size of food at restaurants/fast food joints and charged people less money… Would people just order more food? Or would they just start accepting it as the norm?