Palm of the Hand

- POSTED ON: Nov 29, 2017

The size of an adult woman’s palm is equal to somewhere between one-fourth and one-half cup depending on her basic frame size. 

Bariatric surgeon, Dr. Duc Vuong, says that his patients should always serve themselves only a very small portion of food, and that the entire amount of the food on their plate for their meal should be no larger than the palm of their hand. 

He makes an exception for salads consisting of ONLY green leafy vegetables, and says for a meal that consists of only raw leafy vegetables, the portion can be as large as the entire hand.  This recommendation is based on the fact that during the first 6 months or so after a person has Weight Loss Surgery, the stomach pouch will only stretch to about the size of the palm of the hand.

Dr. V talks about this in his Facebook videos.  He calls the rule, 2x2x1. The circumference of this food volume is the length of 4 fingers across the palm of the hand, and the height of the food volume is 1 finger. 

In his videos he demonstrates the concept of 2x2, by placing two fingers on one-half his palm, then two fingers on the other one-half of his palm.  Essentially, a “sleeve” gastric surgery results in a rectangular thin pouch (2x2), while a “RNY” gastric surgery results in about the same size square (2x2).

For a long time I’ve been working to eat very small food portions, and now I’m experimenting to see if I can tolerate eating meals that are only as large as the palm of my hand. 

This morning I found that two Splenda packages exactly fit the palm of my hand.  So I took some photos of the packages, my hand, my plate and my breakfast. 

Below is a photo of that process.

I learned that a portion of food the size of the palm of my hand
is even smaller than I previously believed.

Here's how a meal the size of my palm should look on my different size plates.


I've posted a great many of my actual meals here at DietHobby under the Heading at the top of the page, RESOURCES, Photo Gallery.  Those of you who are interested in Portion Control might want to take a look at the photos posted under various meal categories there.


Dr. Duc Vuong, the Support Surgeon

Five points made by Dr. V, a bariatric surgeon,
in his recent Facebook video: "How Much to Eat?"
(Recommending the amount of food-intake after gastric bypass surgery)

  1. Palm of Your Hand - a complete meal should be about the size of the palm of your hand.

  2. You Plate Your Own Food - Use a Very Small Plate - a small Teacup saucer size Plate

  3. 2x2x1 - The circumference of this food volume is the length of 4 fingers across the palm of your hand, and the height of the food volume is 1 finger. 

  4. Salad = the size of your whole hand. A leafy green salad is an exception to the 2x2x1 rule because it is a raw vegetable with very little density.

  5. Don’t Trust Your Brain!   Your brain wants you to eat more. Before eating, portion out an amount of food that is ONLY the size of the palm of your hand. Unless you do this, despite what your brain tells you, the amount of food that you will wind up eating will be more than the size of the palm of your hand. 

Note: Originally posted in May 2017 - Bumped up for new viewers.

Leave me a comment.

Please Login to comment on this blog.

Existing Comments:

On Jan 20, 2019 Carolyn wrote:
Can't wait to check out his videos! Thanks so much for posting this. I like his recommendation for salad portions. I'm always afraid of eating huge salads because of the stretch receptor effect on my stomach. I too have been accustomed to eating small portions,and "throwing it off" with large portions of salad concerns me because I know how hard it is to "bounce back" from losing control of my stretch receptors. LOL. Happy New Year!

On Jan 20, 2019 Dr. Collins wrote:
             Hi Carolyn, I very much like the idea of the "palm of the hand" graphic, and I find many of Dr V's videos interesting. Certainly, he knows a lot about bypass surgery and bypass patients .... however .... I take his advice with a grain of salt because he is sort of a "one-size-fits-all" guy, and his recommendations for types of food to eat, like "big salads", and "green smoothies" along with sugar-free and tofu type living are simply not livable for many people ... including ME. Also, he makes a great many assumptions, that don't hold true for everyone, such as WHY people want to lose weight, and the overall financial greed of all people. One difficult thing is that while getting to know about him, his ideas, and his program, I've found it necessary to ignore a great many of his money-grabbing "deals". ...........................................................................................I think Dr V is a good example of how an "expert" can be very "right'" about some things and very "wrong" about other things. Almost EVERY diet medical doctor is "right" about "SOME" things, but NONE of them are "right" about "EVERY" thing, and many of them are "wrong" about a great many things. ................... ......................................................................................... In the weight loss/dieting world, it is common for people to stumble across an "Expert" who gives some basically good advice, and then just blindly swallow everything else that "expert" says ... and what I've noticed is that no one expert appears to be right about more than 80% of the time. They just can't seem to keep from going past the Facts into areas of supposition that are not based on any evidence but merely their own wishful thinking. .....................So....... My advice about Every Single Expert is..................................Take what works for YOU, and leave the rest.

On Mar 17, 2019 LoveTahoe wrote:
The "height" of a finger can be as long as 3-4 inches, right? My middle finger is about 3 inches long on each hand, so is he saying I can eat a 2 x 2 (2 fingers each direction) x 3 inch volume of food which in my case looks like it would be about 1-2 cups of food or more? I love this concept because your "measuring tool" is always with you! :) But I don't quite understand what the "height of the finger" measurement is, since fingers are actually long enough to increase the volume 2-3x.

On Mar 17, 2019 LoveTahoe wrote:
Okay, sorry, he explained it in his video about the "height" of a finger. :) Dr. Vuong is great - I plan to watch more videos.

On Mar 17, 2019 Dr. Collins wrote:
             Hi LoveTahoe, I'm glad you got it. From your question it sounds like you were confusing the "length" of your finger with the "height" of your finger. While the "length" of your finger might be 3-4 inches, it would be very unusual for the "height" of a finger to be more than 1 inch.

<< Previous Blog
Search Blogs
DietHobby is a Digital Scrapbook of my personal experience in weight-loss-and-maintenance. One-size-doesn't-fit-all. Every diet works for Someone, but no diet works for Everyone.
- View 2021
- View 2020
- View 2019
- View 2018
- View 2017
- View 2016
- View 2015
- View 2014
- View 2013
- View 2012
- View 2011

Mar 01, 2021
DietHobby: A Digital Scrapbook.
2000+ Blogs and 500+ Videos in DietHobby reflect my personal experience in weight-loss and maintenance. One-size-doesn't-fit-all, and I address many ways-of-eating whenever they become interesting or applicable to me.

Jun 01, 2020
DietHobby is my Personal Blog Website.
DietHobby sells nothing; posts no advertisements; accepts no contributions. It does not recommend or endorse any specific diets, ways-of-eating, lifestyles, supplements, foods, products, activities, or memberships.

May 01, 2017
DietHobby is Mobile-Friendly.
Technical changes! It is now easier to view DietHobby on iPhones and other mobile devices.