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The plate that makes you happy

More than 8 out of 10 Irish adults don’t eat enough fibre. I am the founder of the visual portion control tools, bringing them to the Irish market with great feedback from organisations like Diabetes Ireland and Tallaght University Hospital on success with using them.

Dietitian Gillian McConnell said “I developed the iPortion Plate after years of consulting with my clients and I felt they were setting themselves up to fail by not having some control on the proportion of food they heaped on their plates. The beauty of it is that it subtly tells you exactly how much of your plate should be filled with veg, carbs and protein while at the same time eating off a pretty, bespoke plate! Despite all the education out there, daily life is busy and with the best intentions often we don’t properly plan our food choices and the other big issue is portion control. My clients are often amazed that half their plate should be vegetables. The stats tell us this with a whooping 8 out of 10 Irish people not getting enough fibre. When you are eating macaroni and cheese your plate needs to be half green beans and not a few or no veg on the side that most people opt for.

It is hard if you are cooking for only one or two not to end up eating a dinner and a half, or even two. And if there is a pot on the table, perhaps you are on your phone and you can distractedly eat double what you should. This mindless eating s one of the reasons why people carry extra weight. Yes, of course it is important what you eat but, unless you are just eating fruit and veg – which is not balanced by the way, portion control plays an equal part in maintaining a healthy weight. It was from my consulting work that I had the idea for the iPortion plate as I knew there was a big need for something practical like this.

Supersize restaurant fare

Depending on where you are eating out, most restaurants bar the fine dining types, serve fairly hefty portions. And research shows that dinner plates are bigger today than in the past. But because Irish people do not eat enough fibre on a daily basis and so may be putting themselves at increased risk of developing heart disease, Type 2 Diabetes, colon cancer and weight gain. My iPortion Plate shows exactly how much veg and salads you should be serving yourself in comparison to the protein and carb components of your meal. We know in a vague way we need to eat more veg, but the majority of Irish people just don’t eat enough. So a nudge here will pay dividends.”

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