Managing your eating habits can be a challenge, especially considering the mass of health and nutritional information — much of it conflicting — we’re presented with every day.
However, a new study published in the Journal of Nutritional Science today suggests we can take matters into our own hands. Quite literally.
A research team from the University of Sydney, led by dietitian and PhD student Alice Gibson, has developed a quick, easy and accurate method for measuring food portion sizes — something that’s particularly tricky when you’re not dining at home.
It doesn’t involve hauling around a measuring tape or a mini set of scales when you go out for a meal. In fact, all it requires is your fingers.
Image: University of Sydney
As you'll see in the video above, finger width can be used as a "ruler" to determine the size and dimensions of foods and liquids.
When combined with geometric formulas of volume and food density factors, these measurements provided an estimate for the weight of the item.
It's dead simple, but the study revealed this technique was a more accurate way of estimating portion sizes than household measures like cups and spoons, and size descriptions like small, medium and large.
And, if you've ever made an effort to keep an eye on your meal sizes, you'll probably agree it'd be a lot less fiddly as well.
Alice Gibson she was motivated to explore easier ways of measuring food when she kept a week-long food diary as part of a clinical weight loss study she's involved in. (Post continues after gallery.)