How To Eat Healthy While Dining Out
You best option is to cook at home, but if you are dining out, there are
ways to help make the best of it!
1. Make smart choices
Almost every menu contains chicken or fish cooked in a healthy way. Look for words
like “grilled,” “broiled,” or “steamed,” and avoid “sautéed” and “fried.” Don’t be afraid
to ask your server for your food NOT to be cooked in butter or oil. Speak up! They
are happy to serve you.
2. Skip the appetizer
By definition, an appetizer is intended to get your appetite going.
But when some appetizers contain more than 1,000 calories, that’s not an
appetizer—that’s a full meal and more! If you do want an appetizer, ask your
table if they’d be willing to split one of the healthier options like a salad, bruschetta,
ceviche, or anything that’s light on sauce and heavy on fruits, veggies, or lean
3. Eat a salad
Greens are also a great option, but not all salads are created equal. Stick
with salads that don’t contain mayo (in other words, avoid the tuna and
chicken salad), and ask for the dressing on the side. This way you can add
your tablespoon or two, instead of having your salad drenched in it.
4. Side dishes in your mouth mean sidecars on your thighs
At many restaurants, the “side” is a baked potato, fries, or coleslaw. What does
that equal? Unnecessary calories. If you’d like a side, request the salad
(dressing on the side), fruit, or steamed veggies, even if you don’t see
them as an option.
5. No bread
Don’t eat the bread. Does it taste good? Sure! But instead of eating something
because it’s in front of you, swap those empty calories for something you’d actually
6. Eat half
Over time, American portion sizes have enlarged to gargantuan sizes.
Restaurants often provide you not with one serving of pasta, but with as
many as 4 or more. But if you have a hard time not cleaning your plate—
after all, the food does taste good—request that the waiter split your order in
half before they bring it to the table. That way you can enjoy your dinner as
lunch later in the week.
7. No soda
If bread is bad, soda might be worse. That’s because it’s easy to consume massive
amounts of calories fast. And don’t even think about going the “diet” route. Those
artificial sweeteners aren’t healthy, and they can lead you to crave more sugary
substances. Talk about a lose-lose! If you want something other than water, ask for unsweetened iced tea. It’s calorie free, so you can drink as much as you want!
Oh, our favorite part! Granted, some restaurants use restraint, and focus more on
unique flavors than on quantity, but if you’re out with friends at the type of place
where the dessert has more calories than your meal, and they insist upon ordering
it, suggest the table split it. Then take a single bite and put your spoon down. It’s
not about denying yourself, but about making smart choices. If you’re still craving
something sweet when you get home, enjoy some yogurt and berries or a piece