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Serving Size? Portion Size?

Have you heard the phrases “serving size” and “portion size” before? Confused about the two? While the terms serving and portion often are used interchangeably, they actually mean different things.

A “serving” is the amount of food recommended in consumer education materials, such as MyPlate. Berkeley Dining uses recommended serving size as reference when creating and standardizing our recipes.   

A “portion” is the amount of a food you choose to eat at any one time.

Sometimes the portion size and serving size are the same, but more often  they are not, especially in a self-serve, all-you-can-eat facility like the dining commons. It may be no surprise that American restaurant portion sizes have grown significantly over the past few decades.

How Do I Measure “1 Serving”?

The USDA MyPlate is a helpful guide that tells you how many servings in each of the five food groups you should be consuming daily.

It’s hard to remember how much “1 serving” is sometimes, so we’ve provided this handy chart to help you visualize and remember 1 serving of the daily essentials. Enjoy!

How Big is One Serving?

How big is a serving

Links & Resources

USDA National Nutrient Database

Your Portioned Healthy Eating Plate in the Dining Commons