Sometimes, it can be difficult to try and do the right thing diet wise if you often get invited out to lunches or evening meals. As restaurants are associated with having a good time and treating yourself, it can be hard to find an option which isn’t going to undo all that healthy eating you have endured all week. We explored ways in which you can still eat out and have a good time while watching the weight.
The way the main meat of a dish is prepared, will often contain more fat than normal, and so to compensate for this, look for ways in which you can make the accompanying food healthier. Instead of chips, as to have salad instead, or baked a baked potato if you want something more filling. You can essentially have as many vegetables as you like in a day, and in fact is all going towards your ‘5 a day’.
If you go for salad, make sure you don’t blow it by having it swimming in high fat salad dressing. Ask the waiter/waitress to bring any dressings on the side so you can add just enough to give it flavor. Also make sure that the vegetables don’t come covered in cream sauces, again, you could ask to have sauces as a side in a jug or leave them out altogether.
As for the main part of the meal, often meat, go for smaller sizes if there is the option, especially with something like steak. As mentioned, you can make up for it by having extra vegetables. The way different meats are prepared will also make a huge difference, so go for options where the meat can be grilled, steamed, roasted, boiled or baked as opposed to fried. Fried chicken for example will have a lot more fat than roasted, and for extra points, don’t eat the skin.
Try not to eat too much bread with the meal. Often, sliced baguettes are offered as a side dish, covered in high fat butter and occasionally, cheese. As an alternative, ask if some of the bread can be served dry, and instead coat with olive oil, like the Italians do. Also, rather than having a hamburger or steak sandwich, ask for it to be served without the bun.
As for condiments, try and stick with those that are lower in fat such as mustard, squeezed lemon, vinegar and Soya sauce (which contains salt however). The ones to try and avoid are butter, cheeses, sour cream, normal and whipped cream and standard salad dressings.
When it comes to dessert, firstly consider whether you really need a dessert and if you are doing it simply because that is what people always do at a restaurant. If you are full, then you could have coffee instead. Otherwise, you could go for a fruit cocktail instead, making sure there isn’t too much cream used, or you could skip the cream altogether.
If you are ordering something that is pasta based, then go for a sauce which is tomato based. Pasta dishes such as a Carbonara, uses a lot of cream and often accompanied by fried bacon.
If you also make sure you drink plenty of water, this will help fill you up and of course, will be much better than something like wine which is high in calories. Of course, it is understandable if you want wine with your meal, but you could opt for a smaller glass. Don’t forget that the simple act of chewing each mouthful for longer and making a conscious effort to take your time when eating your meal, will give the brain more teach to receive signals that your stomach is full.
You can still eat well when dining out, but by making these small adjustments to your meal will allow you to minimize the fat and calorie content, while still being able to have an enjoyable experience.