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Type 2 Diabetes Portion Control

Estimating Serving Sizes


Updated September 21, 2010

Written or reviewed by a board-certified physician. See About.com's Medical Review Board.

If you are new to watching portion sizes, you may be worried about incorrectly estimating the amount of food you need for your diabetic meal plan.  Measuring food can help you control your weight and blood sugar, but it can be time consuming and inconvenient.  Approximating portion size by comparing your food to common objects can make the process of portion control easier. 

1. One cup of raw, non-starchy vegetables is equal to:

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  • the size of a baseball
  • 5 grams of carbohydrate
  • 0 grams of fat
  • 2 grams of protein

2. 1/4 cup of dried fruit is equal to:

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  • the size of a golf ball
  • 15 grams of carbohydrate
  • o grams of fat
  • o grams of protein

3. Six-ounces of light yogurt is equal to:

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  • the size of a light bulb
  • 12 grams of carbohydrate
  • 0-3 grams of fat
  • 8 grams of protein

4. 1 1/2-ounces of cheese is equal to:

PhotoLink / Getty Images
  • the size of your thumb
  • 0 grams of carbohydrate
  • 8 grams of fat
  • 7 grams of protein

5. Two tablespoons of peanut butter is equal to:

Sean Locke / Getty Images
  • the size of a ping-pong ball
  • 0 grams of carbohydrate
  • 16 grams of fat
  • 14 grams of protein

6. A five-ounce baked potato is equal to:

John A. Rizzo / Getty Images
  • the size of a computer mouse
  • 25 grams of carbohydrate
  • 0 grams of fat
  • 5 grams of protein

7. 1/3 cup of rice or pasta is equal to:

John Lund / Getty Images
  • the size of 1/2 of a tennis ball
  • 15 grams of carbohydrate
  • 0 grams of fat
  • 3 grams of protein

8. A three-ounce portion of meat or fish is equal to:

Donna Alberico / Getty Images
  • the size of a deck of cards
  • 0 grams of carbohydrate
  • 1-24 grams of fat, depending on the leanness of the meat
  • 21 grams of protein


  1. About.com
  2. Health
  3. Type 2 Diabetes
  4. Nutrition and Diabetes
  5. Dietitian's Advice
  6. Diabetes Portion Control - Quick Tips for Estimating Serving Sizes

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