If you want to get serious about your portion control, I strongly recommend that you pick up a food scale.
When I wrote about The Portion Plate there were some excellent examples on it. To name a few: One cup of fruits or vegetables equals the size of a baseball. A medium potato equals the size of a computer mouse. One serving of meat equals the size of a deck of cards. For kids, the size of a tennis ball equals one serving of veggies. A serving of fruit equals the size of a yoyo. A serving of whole grains equals a CD. A box of crayons equals a serving of meat.
These are great images for you to remember when you are eating out. But, at home, you can fine tune your portions with a food scale. If a serving of potato chips is one ounce/28 grams, you can know EXACTLY how many calories you are getting by weighing up your portion before you start to snack. I strongly recommend your always trying to measure a portion when you want to snack. Don’t take the whole bag and sit and eat because you will end up with an empty bag and a bellyful of unwanted calories.
I find a scale very helpful when I snack on the tamari-roasted pepitas I wrote about back in June. They are delicious, and provide lots of good nutrients, but they are also high in calories. So, it really helps to be able to weigh out an ounce at a time.
Of course, this is Mr. Lazy Cook writing this, so I have little need for a food scale when cooking. For those of you with more patience, however, I can see how a food scale would really help you to use exactly the right quantity in whatever you happened to be preparing.