10 Portion Control Meal Tips for Truck Drivers

In an age where portions have become large enough to feed a small family, keeping an eye on serving size is becoming increasingly more important for living a healthy life. Did you know that in the 1950s, a burger was about 3.9 ounces and the average soda was 7 ounces? Compare that to today’s portion sizes; now, a hamburger is about 12 ounces and a fountain soda 42 ounces! We’ve been so conditioned to these huge portion sizes, that when the time comes to actually start paying attention to what and how much we’re eating, many people don’t know how to start.

Meal tips for truck drivers

Image credit: Robert Couse-Baker

For starters, it’s important to remember that one portion and one serving are not one in the same. This is how people overeat. One portion is how much of a particular food we choose to eat in one sitting. One serving is the standard amount of food we should eat, as recommended by the USDA or FDA. Weight gain occurs when a portion size is larger than the recommended serving size.

Portions versus servings can get confusing when people assume that pre-packaged products are automatically one servings’ worth. But take for example a 20 ounce bottle of Coke. These days, 20 oz has become the standard size for a bottle of soda. If you look at the nutrition label, you’d see 110 calories and 30 grams of sugar. But when you look closer, you’ll see that the serving size is actually only 8 ounces and that there are 2.5 servings in one bottle. That makes the entire bottle 275 calories with 75 grams of sugar. How many of us would drink less than half of the bottle? Not many – we’d drink the whole thing and assume it’s one serving. And that’s why portion control is important.

By cutting back on portions and strictly following the recommended serving size, it’s possible to lose weight without making any significant changes to your diet. This is why programs like Weight Watchers are so successful – it teaches you to watch your portion sizes and proves that you can still eat your favorite foods, but in moderation. Today, I’m going to discuss meal tips for truck drivers that involve just this — portion control and serving size moderation!

Using Visual Cues

While it can be helpful to measure portions out with measuring spoons and cups when you’re first watching your portion sizes, eventually visual cues will be enough to help you judge the size of one serving. There are some common household objects that you can compare to…

  • 1 cup of veggies = a baseball
  • 1.5 ounces of hard cheese = 3 dice
  • 1/2 cup of ice cream = a lightbulb
  • 3 ounces of cooked chicken = a deck of cards
  • 1 tablespoon of butter, margarine, mayonnaise or salad dressing = a poker chip

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About Amanda

Amanda is a former digital communications coordinator and frequent blogger for the TheHealthyTrucker.net, a website focused on truck driver health initiatives. Our mission is to encourage truck drivers to embrace a healthier lifestyle by providing both expert advice and real world experiences. Let us be your co-driver on the road to a healthier, happier life!