The Serving Size Secret You Must Know

The Serving Size Secret You Must Know

Trail Mix

Quick quiz: how many portions are in a bag of snack size whole grain crackers? Or a small bottle of locally-pressed juice? Or a lunchbox pack of granola bars?

Hint: it’s not “one.” Often, the above products contain two or two-and-a-half servings per package.

Can YOU Eat Just One?

Sure, you could go ahead and enjoy just half the bag, but are you really going to do that? Don’t beat yourself up if the answer is no. If you place food in front of most people, they tend to eat all of it. It’s just the way we’re wired.

The Perils of Supersizing

Eating too much food in one sitting is hard on your body.

Here’s why:

Food is meant to be eaten throughout the day. Overdosing on too much food at one time causes pain, upset, and sluggish digestion.

A surge of glucose is released into your blood. Your pancreas has to work overtime, pumping insulin through the body to absorb all that extra glucose. This can make you feel spacey, weak, irritable, or headachy.

Thinking there is some type of emergency, your adrenal glands go into “fight or flight” mode and release adrenaline and cortisol, which is the body’s natural response to stress.

When your blood sugar levels finally plummet, you experience wicked cravings for more food – specifically simple carbs or sweets.

Research has found that immune system function is affected for at least five hours after consuming large amounts of simple carbohydrates.

5 Tips to Kick Portion Distortion

  • Don’t over-order – go for salads, soups, and appetizers, which are typically more reasonably sized than entrees.
  • Choose high-fiber foods like vegetables, fruits, beans, and whole grains to keep you feeling full and energized.
  • Chew well to aid digestion and give your brain time to register you’re full before you overeat.
  • Get enough water. Often we mistake thirst for hunger.
  • Carry your own snacks. Stock up on snack-sized containers and fill them with baby carrots, homemade trail mix, or nuts.

Get Even Healthier!

Are you curious about how easy-to-make changes (such as chewing your food more thoroughly) can make a big difference in your health? Would you like help in making healthier food choices? Let’s talk! Schedule a complimentary health coaching consultation with me today – or pass this offer on to someone you care about!

Homemade Trail Mix

Prep:15 minutes
Cool: 30 minutes
Makes: 8 servings

Many times we don’t think about making trail mix ourselves. If you make it yourself then you avoid the ingredients that are bad for you, like the cotton seed oil they use to coat the nuts, the sweetened dried fruit and all of the salt that they like to add. Try this simple recipe for a light snack that will give you fuel in between meals. Feel free to customize it to your taste.

Use the following tools

  • 1 large stock pot or pan
  • 1 spatula
  • 1 Misto oil sprayer (or use a tiny bit of oil and wipe pan with paper towel)
  • 1 large glass or ceramic bowl with lid or saran wrap
  • 1/2 cup measuring cup
  • 1/4 cup measuring cup


  • a small amount of grapeseed oil or coconut oil to lightly coat the nuts (so that the salt will stick)
  • 1/2 cup raw almonds
  • 1/2 cup raw pecans (or walnuts if you like them better)
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened shaved coconut (I like the large coconut chips vs small shreds)
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened organic dried cherries (or any unsweetened dried fruit of choice)
  • 1/4 cup 70% Ghiradelli dark chocolate chips (or else “Enjoy Life” makes a 69% dark chocolate chip that is dairy free, soy free and nut free)
  • sea salt to taste


  1. In a large skillet, on medium heat, add a tiny bit of grapeseed oil to lightly coat the nuts with, add the nuts and stir them around until they are lightly coated with the oil so that the salt will stick to them.
  2. Lightly salt the nuts and make sure that they are evenly distributed in the pan so that they toast evenly.
  3. Toast them until they are golden on each side, being careful not to burn them. I like to touch them with my finger and when they feel hot to the touch, they are close to being done on that first side. The other side will toast much faster, so be sure to keep the nuts moving round in the pan so as not to burn them!
  4. Remove the nuts from the pan and let them cool in a large bowl for at least 30 minutes. Stir them once after 15 minutes.
  5. When the nuts are completely cooled you can add the raisins or any dried fruit of your choice and the chocolate chips. (the chocolate will melt if the nuts are the slightest bit warm)

Tip: I like to keep them in a large glass pyrex bowl with a plastic lid, right on my kitchen counter with a 1/4 cup measuring spoon right in the bowl to scoop out 1 portion size and then I dump it into a snack bag to bring to work. YUM!


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