Lifesize Portions: Lose Weight and Keep It Off

Simple system of tools makes portion control easier

Lifesize Portions

I don’t usually write product reviews. It’s not that there aren’t plenty of diet products out there, but so few of them offer a realistic approach to weight loss and a reasonable system of weight maintenance. I decided to review Lifesize Portions because it does both of those things in a way that is simple and cost effective.

Lifesize Portions is a set of devices that helps you measure all the food you eat.

According the plan, you can eat up to six portions each day along with as many “free foods” as you want. The system allows you to eat the food you love in moderation. And yes, you really lose weight.

Of course, not every system works all the time for every person. But this program has universal appeal that makes it worth investigating if you need to lose weight. Read through my pros and cons to decide if Lifesize Portions will work for you.

Pro: Lifesizing is a Flexible System

Lifesize Portions does not assign a list of foods to eat and foods to avoid. You eat all of the same foods you normally eat. The system's flexibility means that users can lose weight even if they follow a specific food plan. Low-carb dieters, gluten-free eaters or vegetarians, for example, can use the program and still lose weight.

The flexibility of the plan also means that any style of food can be Lifesized in order to lose weight.

If you or your family enjoy Southern food, Asian food, kosher food, or any other style of cooking, you can still portion out your meals according to the Lifesize system and lose weight.

Pro: Lifesizing Offers a Permanent Eating Solution

Because the system is not restrictive and because it allows you to eat whatever you want, it’s easy to see how this program can work through a lifetime of changes.

Parents of small children, for example, can easily Lifesize macaroni and cheese without gaining weight. Families with teens in the house can Lifesize pizza and M&Ms. Social singles can still go out and enjoy a night on the town without ruining their diet.

The flexibility of the program comes into play with long-term maintenance, as well. There may be times when someone living in your home is on a specific diet for health reasons. Or, to celebrate cultural traditions, the family may eat special foods that honor important customs. Lifesize can accommodate any range of eating or food styles.

Pro: Lifesize Portions is Shame-Free Weight Loss

Many dieters struggle with shame when they start a diet. Coming to terms with the fact that they have to change their food choices can imply that their previous habits were wrong. There can be both condescending and emotional implications that go along with that. On Lifesize, you eat the same food that you ate before. You don’t feel shame for eating the wrong food because there is no wrong food.

Of course, some changes have to occur in order to achieve weight loss. “You can eat whatever you want, just not as much as you want,” explains Lifesize founder Myles Berkowitz. But, the plan is designed to help you feel happy and satisfied, so don’t expect to be hungry all the time. Portions are larger than typical serving sizes so that you can eat larger, more satisfying meals. According to Berkowitz, “you’ll consume fewer calories in a day and in a week if you eat more calories in a meal because when you’re satisfied you don’t graze.”

Pro: Lifesize Measuring Devices Have a Clean, Simple Design

It might sound strange to comment on the aesthetics of a weight loss product, but it really does matter if you want to be successful at weight loss. Here’s why: if you are going to use a product throughout the day, you need it see it. If you don’t see it, you’ll forget that you have it and you’ll eat the same way you always did in the past. But if you see the system in front of you, it serves as a reminder to eat within the Lifesize portion guidelines.

This system looks nice enough to keep on your counter all the time. It doesn’t look cheap or cheesy and it doesn’t scream “I’m trying to lose weight!” It just looks like a nicely-designed, cool-looking set of tools.

Con: No Specific Nutritional Requirements

I’m listing this as a con because as an avid exerciser and health advocate, I think that it’s important to get a balance of nutrients, including plenty of protein to build muscle, vitamins, minerals and limited sugar. I also think it's important to limit cholesterol and minimize the presence of trans fat in your food.

But there is an upside to not counting all of those numbers: the plan stays simple. I asked Berkowitz about my concern and his answer was straightforward. “Portion control is the best ‘first step’ in a weight loss program. Once you get the weight off, then you can address specific nutritional concerns.”

His response has merit. There is plenty of evidence to support the fact that even a small weight loss can improve a dieter’s risk for disease. And an initial weight loss can also boost self-confidence in a way that may inspire the dieter to make further changes to improve their health.

Con: Support Materials Can Be Overwhelming

I made the mistake of watching all three DVDs in one sitting. The information was a little overwhelming and, at times, redundant. My suggestion? Watch the start-up video or read the short brochure and skip the longer DVDs. Watch them after you’ve Lifesized for a week or so. The beauty of Lifesize is its simplicity, so don’t get too bogged down in the details when you first start the program.

Eventually, however, you should check out the supporting materials and website. There are some key instructions that I wish had been more apparent in the beginning. For example, the six portion limit is the maximum number of portions you should eat each day. A smaller person like myself, or someone who wants to lose weight faster, can have fewer portions. But on difficult days, you can still have up six portions and not feel like you’ve fallen off the wagon.

The Bottom Line: Will You Lose Weight and Keep It Off?

I can’t promise that everyone will lose weight on the system, but I did and I think you will, too. I used the system when I got back from a trip to Mexico. I had several pounds of guacamole, chips, tacos and margaritas to burn off. It usually takes a little over a month to get back to my normal weight – and that month is usually fairly uncomfortable. With Lifesize, the weight came off in three weeks and I did not feel like I was really making any changes to my “eat anything” vacation eating habits.

Since that time, I have continued to Lifesize. Why? It makes sense. I do follow a higher protein diet and I limit sugar and processed food, so my eating habits were already fairly clean. But there were still areas where my plan could use improvement. Lifesize serves as a helpful reminder for me to space my meals throughout the day and to enjoy my food (even vacation food!) in moderation so that I never feel deprived.

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