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  • Writer's pictureTea Writes

9 Inches Between Longevity & Premature Death

A smaller plate could have an impact on your health---how to use and benefit from the nine-inch space on your plate to promote healthy food choices, food-portion control, and mindful eating

As a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, I had the honor and privilege to join the "MOVE!® Weight Management Program for Veterans," which was held at the Richard L. Roudebush VA Medical Center in my hometown in Indianapolis, Indiana, presented by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs - Patient Care Services Health Promotion and Disease Prevention. The 9-inch plate (photo) was one of the many benefits of attending the program. ~ Photo Courtesy: Tea

I use to dismiss the 9-inch plate since I couldn't put much food on it. Well, that was the whole point---eating less. However, it does have additional health benefits.

The 9-inch plate has three major benefits:

  • Limits the amount of food I can place on it

  • Compels me to think about what foods I want to place on it within such limited space

  • Reduces my health risks, if I fill it with healthy choices

The 9-inch plate in the photo is an excellent example of how the plate should be used. With the dividers in the plate and a diagram of food placement, I can't go wrong---it's a plate, as well as a food and portion-control guide all rolled into one.

How to use the 9-inch plate

In addition to smaller portions, I must consciously think about what I want to put on the plate. I must think about what I should be eating and the benefits or consequences of what I might eat.

With the food pictures and placement of the pictures on the plate, it makes it easy and convenient to make healthy food choices and a guilt-free way for planning my meals.

Another benefit of the 9-inch plate

One of the things the 9-inch plate has forced me to do, is to eat slowly. It's not only a mental thing, but there is a physical benefit to eating slowly.

Did you know?...

It takes 20 minutes for the stomach to let the brain know it's full.

I can receive the benefit of experiencing the fullness when I eat slowly. I had always been a fast eater, and would fill-up on so much food until I felt stuffed.

By eating slowly, I eat less, which has helped in my portion control, and fewer calories. The bonus...weight-loss as I continue my exercise regimen.

The 9-inch plate may be the difference between a long healthful life and the alternative --- depending on what and how much food I place on it.

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