It's good to be able to estimate food measurements. Two tablespoons of peanut butter makes a lump the size of a ping-pong ball or, if you prefer, an Eos lip balm. But that doesn't mean a serving is what you should eat.
Photo by Bianca Moraes.
I can't count the number of handy guides that say we "should" be eating our meat in three-ounce portions, or the times I've heard somebody make a guilty comment about wanting more food than comes in a portioned-out meal, like a Lean Cuisine or Blue Apron.
This article, for example, starts by saying that a 85g serving of meat is the size of a deck of cards or a bar of soap. So far, so good. But then it slips into calling that a "recommended portion size" and gives tips on how to stick to smaller amounts.
If you're going to overthink how much to eat, overthink it properly. Figure out how much meat or peanut butter makes sense given your goals, and use the eyeballing tricks the smart way: as a measuring tool.
So if you've budgeted for a tablespoon of peanut butter, think to yourself "half a ping-pong ball" as you measure it out. Or if you're following a high-protein plan, maybe you'll compare the size of that chicken breast to two decks of cards rather than one. After all, applying the same portion sizes across the board is not the best path to health.