Just one meal at a restaurant can equal the total amount of calories you’re burning in a day! Lucky you, there are health tips to eating out that can help your fun meal to not be a diet catastrophe.
1. Eat beforehand to control your appetite, not to suppress your appetite. Try to eat something small containing protein before you get to a restaurant. Often a cup of milk, soy milk, or almond milk will suffice. It has enough protein to hold you over and help you make a wise choice in the restaurant. It will also help you ignore the bread basket, or similar free items placed on your table.
2. Check websites for menus or call ahead to see what will be served if you are attending a planned party. Plan what you want to eat before you get there. By preplanning your food, with items that you enjoy and look forward to, you will not be swayed by other’s choices that may be calorie laden.
3. Suggest a restaurant that you are familiar with. By simply suggesting a restaurant you enjoy and are comfortable with, you are now in command of what you will choose and how you will eat.
4. Be careful of the bread basket, Chinese noodles, nacho chips, or any food put on your table at no extra cost to you. You’ll pay a high cost in the calories consumed.
5. Order a big glass of water and make sure you drink it. Continually ask for refills. If your dinner guests are drinking an alcoholic beverage, and you choose not to, ask for your water to be poured into a wine glass.
6. Go easy on alcoholic beverages; they contain a high amount of empty calories. Alcohol can change your mood while it lowers your resistance to temptation, causing you to over eat. If you do choose an alcoholic beverage, always drink a glass of water first. Quench your thirst with the water, than enjoy the taste of the drink.
7. When you are at a social gathering and food is abundant, remember to socialize. Less eating gets done when more socializing takes place.
8. Avoid ordering foods that are described on the menu with the following words: breaded, béarnaise, au gratin, parmesan, cream, hollandaise, crispy, fried, flaky, or escalloped. These types of food preparation include a high fat content, and many added unnecessary calories.
9. Order foods described with these words: roasted, grilled, broiled, poached, stir-fried, or steamed. Stick to sauces that are stock-based or red. Food prepared this way is lower in calories and an all around healthier choice.
10. Choose “a-la-carte” items, don’t be afraid to ask for substitutions, and avoid all-you-can-eat menus. Everything you eat matters, so choose wisely.
One last food for thought… if you choose a high-calorie meal in a restaurant, leave the uneaten portion there and do not take the rest home for another day. If you enjoy it while you are out, that’s enough. There is no need to eat it again, regardless of how much you paid for it. You have already gotten your money’s worth by enjoying it that one time.
Original Article on HuffingtonPost