Eating Out the Healthy Way
How to dine out without overdoing it
Keep It Simple continued...
I probably don't need to remind you that you should avoid fried foods (menus
might describe them as crispy or breaded), including french fries. All these
foods contain way too many of the wrong kind of calories. You can indulge in
any food on occasion, but forget about deep-fried foods as a regular part of
When ordering soups, choose broth-based ones over cream-based types to save
calories. Researchers have found that when you eat broth-based soup before a
meal, you tend to eat less at the meal. That's because soups are filling,
especially when they contain vegetables. Give it a try and see if a first
course of soup helps you to eat less.
On the Side
Salad dressings and sauces can add a whopping number of calories to a meal.
They are best ordered on the side, so you can control how much you use.
A trick to maximize flavor and reduce calories is to stick the tines of your
fork into the sauce or dressing before piercing your entrÃ©e or salad. Mixing a
little vinegar or water with your salad dressing is another way to cut
Keep in mind that vegetable-based sauces like tomato are healthier than
creamy ones for topping pasta, meats, fish or appetizers. And whenever
possible, use the light versions of mayonnaise and salad dressing. I am often
impressed with how similar they taste.
Eat Light and Right
It's so easy to eat too much of the bread or tortilla chips that sit on the
table and tempt you. Take a small portion and put them out of your reach, or
ask the waiter to take them away.
Skip the butter on your bread, or just use a very small amount. Dipping in
olive oil is a bit healthier than butter -- as long as you use it
There was a time when ladies in the South were taught to always leave two
bites of food on their plates because it was not polite to finish every morsel.
I'm not sure I agree with the wisdom, yet this is a good trick to help you
learn how to push away from the table and eat a little less.
Here's another trick: If you know you are going out to eat, bank a few
calories earlier in the day (or earlier in the week) so you can splurge a
little at the restaurant.
With advance planning, wise choices, and portion control, you can enjoy
eating out while following your plan. All it takes is a little forethought --
and maybe a healthy snack before leaving home -- so you don't over-order when
you arrive at the restaurant.