Health Tip: Diet and Portion Control

It's key to losing and maintaining weight

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(HealthDayNews) -- You've tried to stick to a healthy diet, but the extra pounds just won't disappear. It may not be what you are eating, but how much, according to the Mayo Clinic.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Guide Pyramid recommends six to 11 servings of bread, cereal, rice and pasta; three to five servings of vegetables; two to four servings of fruit; two to three servings of milk, yogurt or cheese; and two to three servings of meat, poultry, fish, legumes, eggs and nuts every day.

This may sound like a lot of food, but serving sizes may be smaller than you realize. One serving of meat, fish or chicken is 2 to 3 ounces. Three ounces is about the size and thickness of a deck of cards. One serving of cooked pasta is 1/2 cup.

Serving sizes for other food groups also may seem small. One medium apple -- not the large ones in the produce aisle -- counts as a fruit serving. So does 3/4 cup of fruit juice.

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