Friday, April 2, 2010

9 steps for healthier eating out

Eating out is sometimes difficult. Restaurant menus are usually full of cheesy, fatty, creamy items, and the serving sizes are much too big - for your health and waistline, if not your stomach. So here are a few quick guidelines for next time you eat out.

1. Stick with grilled or baked - grilled will still have added fats, but not as much as fried. Fish and chicken are the best options.
2. Ask for sauces or dressings 'on the side' - you only need a tablespoon to enjoy the flavour. If you choose pasta in a sauce, make sure the sauce is tomato, not cream, based.
3. Start with a salad - this will fill you up a bit so you will be less inclined to eat too much of the main course.  Have it with balsamic vinegar - the acidity of the vinegar dampens the appetite, too.
4. Chips, rice or baked potato? Baked potato is good, but you'll want sour cream or butter with it, won't you? So go with rice to save kilojoules.
5. Vegetables or salad? The veg are likely to be in a creamy sauce of some sort, or have added salt, sugar and butter, so have the salad.
6. Eat only HALF of the protein and starch served to you.
7. Eat slowly. It takes about twenty minutes for your stomach to tell your brain it's had enough food.
8. Dessert? Really? Okay, have a fresh fruit salad (canned fruit has a lot of added sugar).
9. Coffee to finish? De-caff only please.

And I didn't even mention alcohol! Assuming you must have a drink, half a glass (glass, not bottle) of dry wine is good for you occasionally.

Bon appetit!

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