Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Servings and Portion Control

I see questions about ‘how to count’ servings/portions/calories on The Perfect 10 Diet.  Some people use a formula of fat/protein/carbs, some use calorie counters.

For those of you who haven’t downloaded it yet – I will be referring to, excerpting from and quoting The Perfect 10 Bonus Chapter.  Click HERE to download this document if you need a copy of it.  

IF YOU ARE NEW to P10 and don’t want to haul around the entire Bonus Chapter, try this – copy and paste the basic info needed into a Word document, print and take with you in your purse or keep in your food journal for a quick reference.  I also loaded the Bonus Chapter onto my iPhone so I could open it and view it if necessary.  The Portion Control info starts on page 28.

I’ll share what I do.  Cyndi H. compared it to the (really) old Weight Watchers exchange program, which was a good way to put it.  And I think it’s a very quick and easy way to keep track without losing your mind.

Daily Servings

The Perfect 10 Diet formula suggests that you break down your caloric intake as follows:
40 percent from carbs, 20 percent from proteins, and 40 percent from fats.  It’s much easier to see it like this:

If you are small framed:
·       6 to 7 servings of vegetables and fruits**
·       1 to 1½ servings of protein
·       2 to 2½ servings of fat per day
·       up to 1 serving of dairy is allowed (milk, yogurt, or cheese)
·       add whole grains as suggested in Stages 2 and 3

If you are medium framed:
·       6 to 8 servings of vegetables and fruits**
·       2½ to 3 servings of protein
·       3 servings of fat per day
·       up to 1 serving of dairy is allowed (milk, yogurt, or cheese)
·       add whole grains as suggested in Stages 2 and 3

If you are large framed:
·       7 to 9 servings of vegetables and fruits**
·       4 servings of protein
·       3 1/2 servings of fat per day
·       up to 1 serving of dairy is allowed (milk, yogurt, or cheese)
·       add whole grains as suggested in Stages 2 and 3

Don’t forget to count fat used in cooking if it is also eaten!

**The ‘Fruit’ Question

What is the maximum number of fruits that I can eat in one day while on the Perfect 10 Diet?
A healthy and balanced diet must contain 5 to 9 servings of vegetables and fruits a day.  You can have as many fruits as you want on the Perfect 10 Diet if you are very active.  (Exercise is encouraged if you are not too overweight.) But here is the caveat: fructose, present in fruits, is only metabolized by the liver and not other body cells. The liver uses up to 15 grams of fructose per day, which is roughly 2 fruits a day. Excess fructose (what is not used by the liver) will be converted into fat. This means that if you are active, you can have more fruits (3 or 4 per day) if you wish. If you are not active, 2 servings of fruit per day should be the max. Note that some fruits actually count as 2 servings, as explained in the book. Low-fat diets do not take this into account and promote drinking lots of fruit juices, which the Perfect 10 Diet knows will negatively affect insulin levels and cause us to gain weight.

Keeping Track

I keep a food journal.  At the bottom of each page I note down the following info:

B         L          D

The top row is breakfast, lunch and dinner and the side column are the servings of veggies, protein, fat, dairy and fruit I am aiming for each day (I am cutting back on fruits and not eating whole grains right now, change it to suit your needs).  At each meal I just add up the servings of each item and list it under the B/L/D column.  It helps keep me on track each day.  See if that works for you!

Quick and Easy Household Measurements to Use as Portion-Control Guides
·       3 ounces of meat is about the size and thickness of a deck of playing cards, the palm of your hand (without your fingers) or an iPod.
·       A medium-sized piece of fruit is the size of a tennis ball.
·       A serving of cheese is about the size of 6 stacked dice.
·       ½ cup of cooked veggies is the size of a tennis ball.
·       1 cup of raw veggies is the size of your fist
·       1 ounce of nuts should fit into the palm of your hand.
·       1 teaspoon of butter is about the size of the tip of your thumb

So this is just a brief overview to get you started or to let you know if you’re on the right track.  It’s easy to know what NOT to eat but I found it very helpful to know what size a serving of the ‘right foods’ are.

Please share your comments, questions or ideas.  All we have is each other and let’s face it, I couldn’t do this without all of you!


  1. thank you so much....I so portions control sucks....

  2. THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU FOR THIS BLOG!!! I so want to be successful on the P10 diet since my hormones are so out of whack but the info on their website is minimal and unchanging. PLEASE keep up the good work! (I hope you get some awesome sponsors so your time and effort is monetarily rewarded!)

  3. ^^Linda, that totally made my whole day. Thanks so much!

  4. We are just embarking on the P10 diet and love all the info in your blog. This post was especially helpful,

    1. Thanks Christine - hearing that it helps people helps me want to stick with it and keep posting!