You just need to have the right game plan
There’s nothing quite like going out to a restaurant for a meal. Even if it’s not a five-star establishment, just the fact that you get to sit while somebody else makes food and brings it to you (and cleans up afterward) is always nice. However, restaurants can be minefields if you’re on a diet or are trying to be careful about what you eat. But this doesn’t mean you have to stay in for every meal; if you do a little work, you can still eat out and do so responsibly. Just follow these tips:
Choosing a restaurant
The first step when planning to dine out is to find a suitable restaurant. If you’re unfamiliar with places that may have healthy food, get online to find them, ideally establishments that list the nutritional information or average calorie count of each meal. Most likely, there are several great restaurants with healthful options in your area that you’ve probably driven by a hundred times.
Once you’ve selected a restaurant, check out their menu online instead of waiting until you arrive. This will give you time to study it so you’ll be able to learn about your options and pick the foods to stay away from. You should make a decision about what you’ll eat then so when you get to the restaurant you won’t even have to look at the menu again – which will help prevent you from being persuaded to pick something else.
And if you’ll be eating with other people, make sure to order first. Just like those unhealthy dishes featured on the menu, you may hear what somebody else is ordering and decide it sounds tastier than your healthy choice.
What should you eat?
You should try to find a meal that gives you a selection of healthy macronutrients, including a good protein source like lean meat, as well as veggies and whole grains. Also, stick to items that are baked or grilled instead of fried.
When it comes to foods to avoid, certain things like French fries and cheese-stuffed anything are fairly obvious – but there are other items that may not be as evident. Salads, for example, often come with dressings that are very high in calories and toppings like fried croutons, so be sure to pay attention to what’s in them. And don’t be afraid to ask if there are low-calorie dressings or to request them on the side.
As for drinks, water is always a great choice, but if you want something healthy and different, consider unsweetened ice tea (And try not to think about soda, diet or otherwise).
Slow it down
It’s easy to eat fast, especially if you’re really hungry – and you’re eating really delicious food. But this means you’re more likely to overeat. Remember that it takes at least 20 minutes for your brain to get the memo from your stomach that you’re full, so take more bites, put your fork down every few minutes, and spend some time socializing with your companions.
It can be difficult to lose weight or watch what you eat, particularly when there’s a fast food restaurant on every other corner. But following these tips can help you enjoy the simple pleasure of eating out, without destroying your diet.
Ideal Protein and the Lifestyle Weight Loss Clinic can help you hit your weight-loss goals. With this medically-developed program, you’ll be able to find a diet that works for you and get the education you need to sustain a healthy lifestyle. Learn all about Lifestyle Weight Loss and call 954-452-4590 or fill out our online contact form to get started.
Dr. Nina Coletta has been practicing Podiatric medicine for nearly 20 years and is the owner of Lifestyle Weight Loss Clinic. For the past 30 years, Dr. Coletta has been a fitness and nutrition enthusiast. Her passion for health and wellness, along with a strong desire to help her patients live healthy lifestyles, led to the selection of Ideal Protein as her platform of choice for weight loss.