If you read last week’s blog, you probably did the same math I did….and probably thinking like Scoobie Doo, “Ruh-roh!” But, all is not lost and you CAN eat out successfully. Like any successful goah achievement, however, you have to plan.
When you know you’re going to eat out, consider better food choices you can make that day. You might plan a lighter lunch if you’ll eat out at dinner. Try not to skip meals because low blood sugar might encourage overindulging later. Most importantly, don’t show up at the restaurant starving. If you really want to splurge on a higher calorie entrée, by all means, skip dessert. Commit to sticking to your plan once you’re in the restaurant. And try to avoid all-you-can-eat buffets. Those are very difficult to combat mentally when the “value” proposition teases us into thinking we need to eat more. Because buffets really test my control, I just avoid them.
Your Attack Plan
If eating out, you might try some of the strategies below:
- Don’t forget “portion distortion”! We have been brainwashed into thinking portions should be larger–and food often comes in multi-serving sizes. So order regular portion sizes instead of the jumbo or super sizes that are so common. Ask for a smaller size.
- Try an appetizer, half an entrée, or share a meal with a friend and order an extra side salad. This is also a money saver!
- Ask if you can make healthy substitutions, for instance, a baked potato instead of fries, or a salad or fresh fruit instead of coleslaw. Ordering ala carte is a good idea also—and always ask what healthy substitutions are available. Most restaurants want you to come back.
- Ask for half your entrée to be wrapped up to go before the food is brought to the table.
- Learn to spot which dishes are made with lower calorie cooking methods.
- Ask how dishes are prepared and if they can do it your way by either grilling the chicken or steaming the vegetables.
- Always request that sauces and dressings be provided on the side.
- Don’t tempt yourself! Have the waiter remove the bowl of chips or peanuts, or the basket of bread. (Personally, I can’t sit in front of a bowl of chips and not eat them.) Calories from mindless nibbling can add up before you know it.
- Don’t sit near the dessert cart!
- Limit or eliminate alcohol. Alcohol is high calorie. It contains few nutrients and weakens your will power.
You can do it! Be strong & plan ahead.
Till next time, LIVE fit. Be happy.