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Do We Need to be Eating All We Can Eat?

Buffet Display

I know we say it all the time, but it’s not enough to just focus on the types of food your putting on your plate, you have to pay attention to the amount of food you’re putting on your plate. I was reminded of this concept during a recent trip to an all-you-can-eat buffet. I still struggle with the concept that many people struggle with… If I’m going to pay an all you can eat price, I need to eat all I CAN eat. But, in the words of Ellen Degeneres, “We don’t need to be eating all we can eat”. They make it so easy though. I mean, just leave your plate at the table and go get a new one. It’s like washing away all the guilt from the food that we just ate so we can clean our conscience and go eat more. We’ve all struggled with this… am I right? The key is to not give in to the temptation to eat all we can eat. Your body doesn’t get any more nutrition by eating 4 plates full of food than it does off of one healthy plate. In fact, you’re going to harm your body more by adding all the extra calories your body doesn’t need. So now, I try to look at it this way… If I’m going to pay $12 for lunch, I’m going to leave feeling full, satisfied and having enjoyed some of my favorite foods. When we over eat, it’s hard to enjoy the food because our stomachs begin to stretch and feel overly full.

So, how do you overcome the temptation to over eat when you’re at a buffet? You have to find a portion control tool that works for you. In the past, we’ve published the ever-popular hand guides for portions of different foods. These work great in a pinch, as long as you can remember all of the proper portions by looking at your hands (and don’t have abnormally large hands). An easy to use pocket portion guide, like this free NCES one, can be a big help too. But, we’ve got something that can make it even easier. Whenever possible, I take along my NCES Right-Sized plate so I can be sure I’ve taken the correct portions in each food group. It really doesn’t get any easier than that! You walk up to the buffet with your right-sized plate and Voila, no more guesswork! These plates are available for both kids and adults and really do take the guesswork out of portion control. Give one a shot today!

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Bariatric Surgery: Is it right for Teens & Adolescents?

Here’s a question for you… Do you agree with the use of bariatric surgeries to aid in weight-loss for overweight individuals? Pretty simple, right? Well, here’s a trickier question… do you agree with the use of bariatric surgery to aid in weight-loss for adolescents and teens? This gets a little trickier. Adolescent and teen obesity in America is soaring out of control.

“The latest statistics from the U.S Surgeon General are sobering. They show that more than 12.5 million children and adolescents aged 2 to 19 are overweight. And these numbers are on the rise…” (Cleveland Clinic)

In order to combat their growing waistlines, an increasing number of children are turning to bariatric surgery to help them get their weight in check and take control of their obesity related health concerns. Is this the right answer? As you can imagine, this is a topic of much debate. There are definitely well-respected institutions performing bariatric surgery on adolescents and teens. From our research, these institutions place very strict guidelines on what children are eligible to undergo this type of surgery. They take factors in to account like BMI, obesity related illnesses, age and even previous attempts at weight-loss without surgery. Then, they combine all of this information to decide if they would recommend bariatric surgery to a teen or adolescent patient.

On the other hand, you have those that argue…

“There are many unknowns. No studies document the long-term effects of weight loss surgery on a child’s future growth and development. What’s more, weight loss surgery does not guarantee that an adolescent will lose all of his or her excess weight and/or keep it off long-term.” (Cleveland Clinic)

For this reason, many don’t think that bariatric surgery is the appropriate step for adolescents and teens to take in order to lose weight and get healthy.  Do the risks outweigh the benefits at this point?

No matter which side of the argument you’re on, the one thing that everyone seems to agree on is that “Weight loss surgery… doesn’t replace the long-term need for a healthy diet and regular physical activity.” Weight loss surgery is designed to aid in a

Bariatric Plate

person’s weight loss and keep them heading in the right direction toward a healthier version of themselves. No matter where you fall in this argument, you may have clients that have had or are preparing to have bariatric surgery. In that case, we offer a great line of bariatric products, including the NCES Bariatric Portion Plate, Bariatric Food Model Kits for educating patients and even meal planning software targeted at post-bariatric clients.  To browse the

entire NCES Bariatric and Obesity section, please click here.

We always love to hear your thoughts! Please let us know what you think by commenting on the blog, or sharing with us on Facebook &Twitter. We can’t wait to hear from you!