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Average Dinner Size vs. Suggested Dinner Size

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The top image is an example of a typical meal in the United States. This meal has too many calories and too much fat, cholesterol, animal protein, salt, and sugar. It is missing whole grains and fresh fruits and doesn't have enough vegetables.

The bottom image shows a suggested dinner. Divide your plate into four parts to see how much space each food should take:

  • Bread, starchy foods, or grain should take up just one fourth of your plate.
  • Meat or another protein should also take up just one fourth of your plate.
  • Vegetables should fill the remaining half of your plate.
  • Have 1 small piece of fruit outside of your plate.
  • Have 1 cup milk or yogurt or ½ cup pudding or ice cream outside of your plate.

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerAnne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerRhonda O'Brien, MS, RD, CDE - Certified Diabetes Educator
Last RevisedOctober 21, 2011

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: October 21, 2011
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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