Handy advice about portion sizes

Are you confused about portion sizes?  Our Diet module offers a useful video about how to measure portions.  Here are some other easy-to-use, “handy” ways to gauge portion sizes, using the average adult-sized hand:

  • Fist = 1 cup of vegetables, fruits, or grains
  • Thumb tip (from the joint) = 1 teaspoon of peanut butter, olive oil, or salad dressing
  • Whole thumb = 1 ounce of, say, cheese
  • Flat palm = 3 ounces of fish, chicken, or meat.  Larger palms represent 4 to 5 ounces
  • Cupped hand holds 1-2 ounces of nuts


Some visual cues suggested by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics:

  • Deck of playing cards = 3 ounces of meat, poultry, or fish
  • Baseball = 1 cup pasta
  • Tennis ball = half-cup fruit
  • 1 die = 1 teaspoon spread or butter