In the three and a half months since setting my goal to eat better and exercise, I’ve been blessed with great progress. I’ve lost 14 pounds, have mostly stuck to my portion-controlled diet, and made time to exercise at least two to three times a week. Being a busy mom, I can tell you that last part is tough.
Today, I would like to talk a bit about the balanced diet side to caring for our bodies (God’s temples).
The best thing that my 21 Day Fix came with is a series of containers that I mark and add certain types of food to each day: vegetables (green), fruits (purple), protein (red), carbs (yellow), healthy fats (blue), and seeds or dressings (orange). At the beginning, I calculated my daily caloric need and the book that is part of the 21 Day Fix told me how many servings of each food type are needed for me to meet my daily required calories: 3,2,4,1,1,and 1 respectively.
Loading up containers at the start of each day truly got me to focus on what I was eating. I saw it in front of me on the counter each morning. It was shocking to realize how horrible my diet was when I started grocery shopping differently so I could fill the containers with food types that met my daily requirements.
The other important tool is The Portion Plate above. This was actually given to me by our health insurance provider a couple of years ago. The top half is either fruits and vegetables. The bottom half is split into two halves whole grains on one side (CD) and the other side is lean meat or protein (deck of cards). What the plate states is:
- A cup of fruit is the size of a baseball;
- A medium potato equals the size of a mouse;
- The width of a pancake equals the size of a CD or a slice of bread equals the size of an audio cassette;
- One serving of meat equals the size of a deck of cards.
Having those visual images makes a big difference in how to successfully manage portions. The plate is also smaller than the standard dinner plate they sell in stores these days.
If you’re planning on working toward a balanced diet as your first step in taking care of God’s temple, maybe you’ll also find these visual images helpful.
If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person; for God’s temple is sacred, and you together are that temple. (1 Corinthians 3:17, NIV)