6 Healthy Eating Out Tips & Suggestions
We present you the six healthy eating tips for you to keep in mind while eating out plus a bonus section providing healthy suggestions while at food courts and restaurants.
Reduce Unhealthy Fats
Choose steamed, poached, blackened, grilled, roasted, or boiled dishes.
Avoid dishes that are described as alfredo, béarnaise, béchamel, beurre, en croute, scalloped, hollandaise, parmigiana, tempura, deep-fried, crispy, breaded, coated, and au gratin.
Ask that your meal be cooked in “as little fat as possible”
Choose lean cuts of beef, poultry, and pork
Beef: Round, sirloin, flank steak, tenderloin
Poultry: Skinless chicken or turkey breast
Pork: Center cut loin chops, Canadian bacon, pork tenderloin
Cut away visible fat from meat and poultry.
Choose low-fat milk products such as fat-free (skim) or 1% milk in your coffee instead of cream or half and half.
Leave the cheese off of your sandwich.
Try frozen yogurt, fruit, or sorbet in place of ice cream for dessert.
Keep Total Fat Low and Use Healthy Fats to Replace Unhealthy Fats
Ask for avocados and nuts on salads instead of cheese or meat.
Choose fish instead of red meat.
Spread peanut butter on your toast instead of butter.
Use an olive oil based dressing instead of ranch, blue cheese, or French.
Look for Low Sodium Options
Limit condiments: ketchup, mustard, soy sauce, teriyaki, and BBQ sauce are all high sodium.
Avoid adding salt from the shaker. One teaspoon of salt contains 2300 mg of sodium.
Use pepper, spices, herbs, vinegar, & lemon or lime juice to season your food instead.
Avoid soups when eating out – most restaurants use very high sodium bases.
Limit cured or pickled foods; and deli or processed meats.
Ask that your dish be prepared without added salt.
Seek Out Foods That are High in Fiber
Plan your meal around vegetables – they should fill up ½ of your plate.
Start with a big salad, or order a side of steamed vegetables.
Choose fruit for dessert.
Substitute beans for meat.
Choose whole grains such as whole wheat bread, oatmeal, bran cereals, and barley.
Select Low-calorie Foods When Possible
Follow the guidelines above to cut back on fat.
Limit calories from sugar by choosing unsweetened beverages (coffee, tea, water). Add a sugar substitute or lemon if desired.
Control your portions! Food establishments serve us double, triple or even quadruple what we need for a meal. We often feel guilty if we waste any – but it either goes to waste, or goes to your waist – you choose!:
Split an entrée with a dining companion
Choose a salad and an appetizer instead of an entrée
Take ½ of your entrée home for lunch the next day (or for an additional 2 meals!)
BEWARE OF THE BUFFET! Or “special deals” or “all you can eat.” These do not save money in the long run if it means that you eat more. If you do go to a buffet, look at all the selections and choose a few to try before you fill your plate. Try not to return for seconds, and use a salad-sized dish.
Use Technology and Nutrition Information Postings to Your Advantage
Try to find the menu on the internet to pick a healthy option in advance.
If it’s a restaurant you order take out from regularly, circle the healthy options on the paper menu.
If you have a cell phone that has access to the internet, use some of the following websites to look up fast food nutrition information: calorieking.com; dailyplate.com; dwlz.com
If you have an iphone or other phone that allows you to use applications, download apps that have a database of restaurant nutrition info for on on-the-go reference.
Food Courts and Restaurants – Healthy Suggestions