Eating Out and Staying Healthy: Your Guide to Smart Food Choices


Eating out can be a challenge when you’re trying to maintain a healthy diet. With so many tempting options and the convenience of fast food, it’s easy to fall off the healthy eating wagon. Here are some tips so you can still enjoy a delicious meal while eating out without sacrificing your healthy eating habits.


Plan ahead

Take a few moments before heading out to research the menu and seek out healthy options. Look for dishes that are grilled, baked, or steamed, as these cooking methods often involve less added fats and oils. Additionally, prioritise lean protein choices such as chicken, fish, or vegetarian alternatives. By arming yourself with this knowledge in advance, you are able to make informed decisions and resist the temptation of impulsive, less healthy choices.


Be mindful of portion sizes

Another crucial aspect to keep in mind is portion sizes. It’s no secret that many restaurants serve portions that far exceed the recommended serving size. To combat this, consider sharing a meal with a friend or requesting the server to package up half of your meal to enjoy later. By doing so, you not only control your portion intake but also have the opportunity to enjoy the flavours of your chosen dish without the guilt of overindulgence.


Load up on vegetables

When it comes to dining out, vegetables are truly your best friend. Fortunately, many restaurants offer side dishes of vegetables or refreshing salads. Take full advantage of these options and make it a point to fill at least half of your plate with colourful, nutrient-dense vegetables. Not only do they provide a wide array of vitamins, minerals, and fibre, but they also help to create a satisfying and well-balanced meal.


Watch the sauces

While sauces and dressings can add a burst of flavour to your dish, they can also pack a considerable number of unnecessary calories. To maintain control over your meal’s nutritional content, don’t hesitate to ask for sauces and dressings to be served on the side. This allows you to decide how much you want to indulge in, rather than having an excessive amount automatically added to your plate.


Make smart substitutions

Look for opportunities to swap out less healthy components of a dish with healthier alternatives. For instance, instead of opting for the classic salad and chips combo, consider requesting a side of steamed vegetables and mashed potatoes as a more nutritious option.


Choose water as your drink

When choosing your beverage, it’s best to skip high-calorie drinks like fruit juice, alcohol, and soda. Instead, quench your thirst with a refreshing glass of water, unsweetened tea, or sparkling water. Not only do these options help you stay hydrated, but they also eliminate unnecessary calories, leaving more room for the enjoyment of your meal.


By embracing these valuable tips and seamlessly incorporating them into your dining-out routine, you are setting yourself on a rewarding journey of enjoying healthy and satisfying meals. It’s important to remember that with just a little bit of planning and preparation, you hold the power to maintain your healthy eating habits regardless of the culinary adventures that come your way. Bon appétit!

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