- With Mayo Clinic nutritionists
Jennifer Nelson, M.S., R.D. and Katherine Zeratsky, R.D.read biographyclose window
Jennifer Nelson, M.S., R.D. and Katherine Zeratsky, R.D.Katherine Zeratsky and Jennifer Nelson
Jennifer K. Nelson, M.S., R.D., L.D., C.N.S.D.
Jennifer Nelson is your link to a better diet. As specialty editor of the nutrition and healthy eating guide, she plays a vital role in bringing you healthy recipes and meal planning.
"Nutrition is one way people have direct control over the quality of their lives," she says. "I hope to translate the science of nutrition into ways that people can select and prepare great-tasting foods that help maintain health and treat disease."
A St. Paul, Minn., native, she has been with Mayo Clinic since 1978, and is director of clinical dietetics and an associate professor of nutrition at Mayo Clinic College of Medicine.
She leads clinical nutrition efforts for a staff of more than 60 clinical dietitians and nine dietetic technicians and oversees nutrition services, staffing, strategic and financial planning, and quality improvement. Nelson was co-editor of the "Mayo Clinic Diet" and the James Beard Foundation Award-winning "The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook." She has been a contributing author to and reviewer of many other Mayo Clinic books, including "Mayo Clinic Healthy Weight for EveryBody," "The Mayo Clinic Family Health Book" and "The Mayo Clinic/Williams Sonoma Cookbook." She contributes to the strategic direction of the Food & Nutrition Center, which includes creating recipes and menus, reviewing nutrition content of various articles, and providing expert answers to nutrition questions.
Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.
As a specialty editor of the nutrition and healthy eating guide, Katherine Zeratsky helps you sort through the facts and figures, the fads and the hype to learn more about nutrition and diet.
A Marinette, Wis., native, she is certified in dietetics by the state of Minnesota and the American Dietetic Association. She has been with Mayo Clinic since 1999.
She's active in nutrition-related curriculum and course development in wellness nutrition at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and nutrition related to weight management and practical applications of nutrition-related lifestyle changes.
Other areas of interest include food and nutrition for all life stages, active lifestyles and the culinary arts.
She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, served a dietetic internship at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, and worked as a registered dietitian and health risk counselor at ThedaCare of Appleton, Wis., before joining the Mayo Clinic staff.
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Portion control — Downsize portions for better weight control
By Jennifer Nelson, M.S., R.D. and Katherine Zeratsky, R.D.
Research tells us that people eat more when presented with larger portions of food. Even children as young as two years are affected by portion size. Our judgment about serving sizes has been completely skewed by restaurant portions, food packaging and our own eyes. So how do we reset our expectations about appropriate portions? You're already on track by reading this. Now, how do you apply it to yourself?
Start by familiarizing yourself with appropriate serving sizes. If you don't have a food scale or measuring cups handy, use visual cues to help you judge portion sizes:
- A serving of fish (3 ounces) is the size of a deck of cards
- A serving of pasta or dry cereal (1/2 cup) is the size of a hockey puck
- A serving of fresh fruit (1/2 cup) is the size of a tennis ball
- A serving of butter (1 teaspoon) is the size of one die
Test yourself — pour yourself a bowl of cereal and then transfer it to a measuring cup. How much is your portion? How does it compare with the recommended serving size?
Here are other tips to try:
- Don't put dinner on the table. Instead, serve it from the stovetop or countertop. You'll think twice before you get up for seconds.
- Don't eat out of the box. Put your snack in a small bowl or other container. And then put the box or package away.
- Opt for single-serving treats. The fear of a wrapper trail will keep you honest.
- Downsize your meal. Restaurant portions are notoriously large. So when eating out, plan to eat only half of the meal. You can share the rest with a friend or ask for a doggie bag. Alternately, consider asking for a "light" or "lunch-size" portion.
- Try the tasting menu. At parties, sample two or three bites of the dishes on offer. Keep the portions small and have fun enjoying the variety.
- Take time to enjoy yourself. Appreciate the colors, smells and textures of your food. Stop and talk to your family and friends between bites. By slowing down you'll be better able to appreciate your meal and to register when you're full.
How do you do with minding your portions? Share your tips.blog index