Most people can follow healthy eating habits when they are at home, but how about when you go out? It’s a lot tougher to keep that zipper from coming undone when we are eating in our favorite restaurants. But you can do it!
Is There Salad Under The Dressing?
“It would be nice if I could have some salad with my dressing” – this was my thought when I tried my first American salad. I mean, seriously, have you seen the amount of dressing they put on those restaurant salads? The lettuce is always drowning and it almost seems like the menu should have the option “salad with dressing” or “dressing with salad”.
The other day I was having a night out and I know what you’re thinking: finally your story starts somewhere else besides the supermarket, LOL. But yes, here I was at the restaurant looking at the menu and ordering a steak. When my plate finally arrived, I realized that the steak was covered in a stick of butter (not a joke), but the weirdest thing was that it came with broccoli and sweet potato. I am definitely not the type to send my food back, because I used to work at a restaurant, so I quietly rubbed the butter off. Yet I like it when my food tastes like it’s supposed to, not covered up with things.
Over the years I’ve learned a few of these things when ordering in restaurants, including this little mishap last weekend. And, as always, I would love to share some great tips on how you can go out without sacrificing your healthy eating habits:
1. Check if the menu has light options available
This is very obvious, but I thought I’d mention it anyway. Most restaurants nowadays offer “light option” menus. I don’t like to count calories, but menus with light options will usually provide some nutrition facts. If you don’t like to complicate things then go with this choice – you are going to be on the safe side knowing that your food is semi-healthy.
2. Order the right sides
When we usually order a steak or a fish or what ever else, most of the time it comes with side options. I always get broccoli as one of mine and I always ask the waitress to make sure that my broccoli is half raw. This way you’ll get some nutrients out of your veggies, because when you eat them fully cooked, you might as well chew on paper. The other option that I always get is sweet potato fries, and that’s when I feel like getting a little crazy and letting my hair down. It’s definitely not the healthiest option but is healthier than regular fries, not by much though.
Your next best healthy option is baked potato without sour cream, cheese or butter. Just sour cream and cheese alone will knock off around 500 calories (for those of you who count calories).
3. Adjust your own order from breaded to grilled
Yep this is what I do all the time! The waitresses sometimes are not so happy about it, but this shouldn’t stop you, because if you are going to pay for you food it better be how you want it. Never ever order anything that is breaded, ask for grilled instead, but be super nice to the waitress :).
4. When ordering a salad ask for dressing on the side
I feel like restaurants are wasting insane amounts of dressing, because when I order my dressing on the side they usually bring out a bowl of it, the size of a bowl of soup. Instead of pouring your dressing on the salad, take your fork and dip into the dressing every bite you take. First of all, the salad will actually taste like a salad, and second, it will reduce the calories by half. Or you can do something even better: ask for olive oil and vinegar on the side.
Now with all these super tips I just shared with you, run free and enjoy your lunch or dinner! If you have some tips of your own, shoot away!
Picture courtesy of Kai Chan Vong.