smaller meals

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Make Your Meals 25 Percent Smaller
"If you're not hungry within three to four hours after you finish a meal, you're eating too much at a time," says Tamara Melton, RDN, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. This is a problem because ideally you'd be eating every few hours so that your body has a steady stream of calories to use for energy. In other words, you're not scarfing down extra that is then stored as fat. If you want to get on the metabolism-boosting schedule, you'll need to shrink your meals. First, take a look at your plate and make sure it's made up of half non-starchy fruits and vegetables, one quarter lean protein, and one quarter starch or whole grains, says Melton. (Don't overthink the difference between 25 percent protein here and 30 percent from the first tip–the main point is making sure protein is a significant portion of your diet.) Then cut the portions of each section by 25 percent and pay close attention to your hunger levels. If you're ready to eat again within the three to four hours, you're all set. If you're completely ravenous, try cutting by one eighth instead of one quarter.