Everyone enjoys eating out, and just because you are trying to be healthy does not mean that you shouldn't be eating out at all. For those who eat out quite frequently, whether it is due to a lack of time, for convenience reasons, or just socially with friends, I have outlined a few helpful tips in this post - which have been promoted by the Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA) - to assist you in making smarter and healthier choices.
- Choose meal options that includes fruits and vegetables - the more variety, the better!
- Try to avoid sugary soft drinks, juices or alcohol. Choose water instead - it's not only light in calories but it is also much lighter on the pocket ;) Otherwise, choose a small size diet soft drink or fresh glass of juice.
- Choose lean meats rather than battered or fried meats
- Choose meals with terms such as grilled, roasted, boiled, baked or steamed. Avoid those that say creamy or fried - especially deep fried.
- Share a dessert with a friend! This will save you half the calories if you were to eat it on your own. Plus sharing is caring right?
- Choose meals with complex carbs such as bread, pasta or rice, instead of choosing hot chips
- Listen to your own body cues - eat slow and stop when you are feeling full. If you can't finish your meal and don't want to waste food, most places are happy for you to take-away. This leads me to my next tip...
- Choose a small serving size if available. Some restaurants have the option of choosing an entree or a main size for their meals. Another example is when ordering coffee, choose the small rather than the regular or large size.
- Plan ahead - choose a restaurant that you know have healthy options, or look at their menu before hand to scope out what they have. If you have in your mind before hand what you would like to have, it will save you from making last minute ordering decisions - which may not always be the healthiest option when you have a growling stomach.
- Last, but not least, always remember that it is all about moderation. While you can still make healthier, smart choices most of the time, there is also no harm in indulging yourself once or twice a month. Enjoy yourself and count it as a treat :)