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6 Tips For Eating Healthy When Dining Out

Restaurants are home to many foods that are high in fat and calories. However, if you are dedicated to a diet or just want to eat healthy you don’t need to avoid restaurants altogether. These tips will help you make educated decisions to keep your waistline in check while still having an enjoyable dining experience.

1. Eat Small Portions

Some restaurants will serve very generous portions and although this can provide a good value, you shouldn’t feel obligated to eat everything. Instead eat half the entrée and ask to take the rest home. You also have the option of eating a smaller appetizer as your main course. Stay away from buffets and all-you-can-eat specials as these will undermine your attempts at portion control!

2. Review the Menu Before Dining

Not all restaurants will provide healthy dining options. Before eating out, take a look at the menu paying close attention to how the foods are prepared. Look for keywords such as “grilled”, “broiled”, and “low-fat”. Avoid restaurants that have menus dominated by fried foods.

3. Eat Something Before Dining Out

Although this may sound like strange advice, it is wise to have a small and healthy snack 30 minutes before eating out. If you are overly hungry when ordering, you are more likely to disregard healthy eating habits. Even a simple glass of water can occupy space in your stomach and help prevent unhealthy decisions prompted by hunger.

4. Make Special Requests

It may take a little extra effort, but by communicating with your waiter you can find healthy alternatives to common menu items. Instead of having french fries or a baked potato with your meal, ask to substitute a side salad or another vegetable. This is a simple step that can go a long way toward decreasing the calorie count of a meal.

5. Don’t Forget Your Drinks

With so much focus on different food options, it is easy to forget that drinks can have a significant impact on your diet. Soda and alcohol can both be very high in calories. Diet sodas and light beer can provide healthier alternatives to their calorie-rich counterparts

6. Focus on Balance

A nutritious meal should not only be low in calories, but well balanced. The food pyramid, created by the United States Department of Agriculture, provides an excellent guide for choosing what to put on your plate. Remember that small calorie-rich treats can be ok, but should be complemented with a variety of healthy foods.

food pyramid
food pyramid

For more tips or information about eating healthy, call our office at (516) 616-5500 or use our easy contact form.

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