When you prepare meals at home and you are in control of what you put in your meals it's easy (easier) to eat healthy. Many people associate eating out with unhealthy food, but that's not necessarily the case.
But if you are one of the people who really enjoys eating out, then your waist line could be suffering from it.
Today I've decided to share a few tips on how to eat out and stay healthy while eating out, because who am I to tell you to skip that meal with your friends?
1. Choose Wisely: The best position you could be in is to have the chance to select the restaurant you are going to eat at. If you keep simple, then you are going to find it easier to stick to your goals than having to sit in an unhealthy restaurant trying to find something healthy on the menu. I encourage you to select one of the following to dine at:
Steakhouse: You can't go wrong with some steak (protein) and vegetables. My favourite is a fillet with asparagus or some baked vegetables (believe it or not I actually love them).
Seafood: Fresh seafood is always healthy and filling, just don't go to the fast-food seafood chains, they are not part of this list.
Mexican: Honestly I would happily eat Mexican food everyday and yes if you are "smart" you can pick out a healthy salad bowl covered in salsa, guacamole, chicken and sautéed vegetables...Sign me up now!
Breakfast food: Steak and eggs are great for any meal if stuck with other unhealthy choices.
2. Scout the menu first: I have this habit of looking over the menu of the place I am going to before getting there. I do it because most of the time I am so hungry I want to order straight away. But looking over the menu beforehand will avoid you having to find willpower once you are there and smelling all the good smells (please enjoy smelling is calorie free). Also try to be the first one to order, speak up first when you are waiter asks for your order that way you are not influenced by your friends choices and you'll hopefully influence theirs!
3. Don't be afraid to ask for help: See something that's "almost" healthy and that could be great with a few changes? Don't hesitate to ask the waiter if he can make a few adjustments for you. Any restaurant is happy to serve you a plate of chicken and vegetables even if it's not on the menu. Remember they want to make you happy.
4. Avoid carbs: Many restaurants (most) have starchy appetisers and sides, which only send you downhill for the rest of the meal. Aim for grilled, not breaded options. If you get the choice of two sides just ask for a double vegetables portion. If you do want the carbs, then maybe have sweet potatoes instead of french fries. Finally beware of the salads as well, a caesar salad is really not that healthy, ask for the dressing on the side (oil or vinegar) and add it yourself.
5. Skip dessert: Just don't have it. I have only recently starting having some (I am trying to put on weight) but just don't ever do it. Don't even give yourself the option so you never have to have that internal debate "should I get some? do I deserve it? will I feel guilty/". Condition your brain to say "no dessert for me thanks" and that's that.
Here are some extra tips on eating healthy when out:
1. Swap soda for water. No explanation needed.
2. Avoid fried food. DUUUH
3. Don't be afraid to split big portions. Some portions are made for more than one people, please split the calories.
4. Eat slowly. It gives your brain time to realise when you are actually full.
5. Know that you don't have to eat the whole thing. If you are full then it's not a big deal to leave food in the plate (unlike what my parents used to tell me. I was terrified about not finishing my plate as I thought I would have to go clean up dishes in the back to make up for the food I threw away).