Restaurant Survival Guide

We don’t go out to eat that often, but with the weekend coming up, and seeing people’s Facebook posts, I realized HOW much people eat out.  This isn’t bad per say… it’s the decisions that people make from the menu that isn’t so great.   I know that just because you have made the commitment to be healthy, doesn’t mean you are dead and should eat naked chicken and rice cakes!  I also know people going out with family and friends will look at the “unhealthy” decisions that those people make and wonder why they “can’t” eat that, be envious or even angry.  The unhealthy choices that your family and friends are making probably mean they are themselves unhealthy.  So, you are actually the victor and should take pride in ordering healthy! Be weird!

There is almost always healthy options at restaurants.  Don’t be afraid to ask questions!

Ask questions like

  • How is that cooked?
  • Is that cooked in oil?
  • Can I get sauce on the side?
  • Can I substitute the french fries, baked potato, or any other side for a veggie or fruit?

If you know where you are going before hand, Google the restaurant menu, and plan what you are going to have.  GO PREPARED!  Share your meal decision with your spouse, friend, or family member so that when you get there, they know your plan, and it will be harder for you to change to an unhealthy options. This make sit harder to back out. Accountability.

A lot of restaurants have nutritional information on the menu, but you can almost always find nutritional info online!

Here are a few restaurants that have an amazing health-ified menu

General rules of thumb

If you go to a restaurant unprepared, and they don’t have the nutritional info, and you don’t have a smart phone to find the nutritional info, here are some rules of thumb:
  • Look for things like the word “grilled”.
  • Sauces are generally not a good option- request sauce on the side.
  • Salads are NOT necessarily a good option. The crap they put on it can be just as unhealthy, and the dressings are ridiculously full of empty calories and fat.
  • If you go to Mexican food, get the Fajitas, cooked in light or no oil, and the corn tortillas.
  • Another tip at Mexican- if you MUST eat the chips, eat the little broken ones at bottom of the basket.  They are small. You are eating less, but feeling like you are eating more.  NEVER refill the chip basket!
  • If you go to Chinese, get the steamed rice, and get something with veggies and no sauce.  Stay away from the egg rolls. 🙁
  • Fish is usually a good option, just as long as it’s broiled or grilled, and has no sauce.
  • If your going out for breakfast, almost all restaurants will let you order an omelet or eggs with just egg whites or egg beaters.  An egg white veggie omelet with very little or no cheese is good!
  • Also for breakfast, stay away from the hash browns or potatoes!  Get a couple pieces of wheat toast, butter on the side.  Then, add a little of the butter yourself. If they do it, they slather the toast up!

One final tip

When you’re full, stop eating. Actually, stop eating a little bit before you are full. Better to “waste” a little food, than stuff yourself. Enjoy eating out, but don’t regret it afterwards.

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