RE: QUANTITY, NOT ALWAYS QUALITY
Many, MANY years ago I came across an article that discussed the AMOUNT that we eat. It also made some comparisons of how much we Americans eat at one sitting as compared to those in selected other countries.
The premise of the article was that if we cut back on the QUANTITY, we would not have to eliminate many of our beloved food items, as long as we maintained a reasonable and healthy daily program.
Towards that end, it offered an equation (which I no longer have, nor do I have the article) to cut our intake based on the total number of BITES (and SWALLOWS) we took each day.
I decided to try this clever idea.
For several days, I was to COUNT every time I took a BITE of ANYTHING or SWALLOWED anything that had any caloric content.
At the time, I was working in a school where most of the staff would eat lunch in the faculty room. Trying to be as discreet as possible, I kept a tiny piece of paper next to me, and after every 5 bites or so, I would keep a tally. Did this for breakfast and dinner as well.
At the end of several days, I followed the directions to total all the bites taken for those days, divide it by whatever the equation stated (taking age, gender, activity level and possibly a partridge in a pair tree into consideration) and then add a certain number to the total, and this would be the GRAND TOTAL of bites and swallows allowed for each day.
To facilitate the process, I bought myself a 'clicker' to help keep track, but only used it at home ( this was after college but before I moved into an apt. so I was living with parents.) I proceeded to drive my mother nuts at the dinner table with 'clicking' after each
bite, so she begged me to only 'click' after every 5 or more bites.
At school, I didn't use the clicker so I continued to try to keep track with paper and pencil. I was eventually questioned by my colleagues as to what 'data' I was collecting and what my 'research' was about - was I counting certain words used in daily conversation, for example, which they thought I would be using for a thesis ? ! LOL !
I eventually decided I had to tell them, and trust me when I say that I deeply regretted it !!
I got pretty good after a while and committed to memory how many 'bites' were in certain portions of regularly consumed foods/drinks. (For a 2"X2" piece of chocolate brownie, for example, I will confess to increasing the size of the 'standard bite' so as to allow a wee bit more in my allottment !! LOL!!)
END RESULT: After a couple months- my mother hid or disposed of or stomped on my 'clicker' when I wasn't looking, my work colleagues came up with every joke or one liner possible, and I lost the 15 lbs. that eating junk food/pulling all nighters/ going to a local hangout drinking a few beers on the weekends at college had packed on.