9 Ways to Eat Healthier When Eating Out

Written By Brady Wirick

DOWNLOAD THE PDF GUIDE HERE

Eating out is a delightful experience. Kim and I eat out at least once a week for our “date lunch”. It is a great time to connect socially and rekindle our relationship. For most, eating out isn’t just social. You have to eat out for your job. It is how business gets done. I have created this guide to take some of the pressure off.

Eating out always poses challenges for those trying to maintain a healthy diet. With tempting menus and enticing options, it’s easy to get sidetracked from your nutrition goals. However, with a few mindful strategies, you can enjoy a restaurant meal without compromising your health. In this guide, we’ll explore how to make smart choices when ordering at restaurants.

If possible, I would limit eating out to once a week. Even after doing everything you can at the restaraunt, you are still going to be exposed to bad oils, high glycemic foods, and temptation. These can all derail your pogress.

Taking digestive enzymes before your meal can aid in the breakdown of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. This can be especially helpful when dining out, as restaurant meals may contain ingredients that your digestive system isn’t designed for. My go to enzyme of choice is DPPIV. 

CLICK HERE TO READ THE BLOG POST ABOUT DPPIV AND WHERE TO ORDER IT

1. Check the Menu in Advance:

Before heading to the restaurant, take a moment call or review the menu online. This allows you to plan your order, consider healthier options, and avoid impulsive decisions influenced by hunger or peer pressure. Kim and I have our regulars where we already know the menu. When we go out of town, we use this app to decide where we are going next.

2. Ask about Gluten and Dairy Free options

Pay attention to the servers reaction. If they do not answer confidently, then ask them to talk to the manager (not like a Karen) or the Chef.  Opt for grilled fish, chicken, steak, pork, etc. Seasonal veggies are generally safe. Ask for fresh fruit instead of bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, etc. Foods that are labeled “healthy” are labeled that way because they are lower in calories. They are not always the best option.

3. Balance Your Plate:

When ordering, aim for a balanced meal that includes a mix of lean proteins, fruits, and vegetables. This provides a range of nutrients and helps keep your portion sizes in check. Do not stress out about sticking to the 4-4-4 rule. Remember. This is only once a week.

4. Be Mindful of Portion Sizes:

Restaurant portions are often larger than what we need. Consider sharing an entrée or asking for a half portion. Alternatively, you can ask for a to-go box when your meal arrives and portion out a suitable amount before you start eating. Don’t forget that your dog needs protein and fat too!

5. Skip the Starters:

Appetizers only exist to increase profits and are typically just there so your brain can get in an addictive mindset and you eat more. You can live without them. Make your digestive enzymes your appetizer and use the time to connect with the people that you are with!

6. Beware of Liquid Inflammation:

This counts for both salad dressing and drinks. For salad dressing, opt to bring your own or order oil and vinegar. For drinks, just drink water or water with lemon. Period.

7. Customize Your Order:

Don’t hesitate to customize your order to meet your dietary preferences. Ask for dressings, sauces on the side, and ask about substituting healthier sides like steamed vegetables or a side salad.

8. Savor Every Bite:

Eat slowly and savor each bite. This not only enhances your dining experience but also gives your body time to recognize when it’s full, preventing overeating. Try to chew each bite 20 times.

9. Skip Dessert.

Laney at the Snake Bite knows not to even ask. 🤣 Even if you have a dessert once a week, that will keep you locked in the addiction. Would you give a recovering alcoholic one drink a week? Then why would you eat that pie?

Conclusion:

Eating out doesn’t have to be a challenge for those committed to a healthy lifestyle. By making informed choices, balancing your plate, and being mindful of portion sizes, you can enjoy a delicious meal at a restaurant while staying true to your nutrition goals. Remember, it’s about making conscious decisions that align with your well-being, allowing you to relish the dining experience guilt-free.

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