Hi everyone! I haven’t posted in a while – I just finished moving, and it was not fun. Although I got some good exercise packing and carrying boxes in and out! Moving also gave me the inspiration for this post. Being in the process of moving meant not grocery shopping because my kitchen was packed away, and once I moved, I had no idea where anything was to cook, so I found myself eating out, a lot.
A huge misconception (one that took me a while to understand) is that eating at a restaurant has to be a cheat meal. This is not true at all. When you’re going to a restaurant, or ordering take-out, it’s all about choices. Here are some tips to help you choose healthier meals if you’re stuck eating out!
Choosing a Restaurant
If you decide to go out to eat or order in, choosing the right restaurant is extremely important. If you have control over the restaurant, choose one that offers some healthier options. My go-to while moving was JRoo’s in North Haven. They deliver, so we didn’t have to leave our house, and they have so many options. My choices for the 2 weeks were:
- Grilled chicken with rice and vegetables
- Salad with grilled chicken, almonds, tomatoes, dried cranberry & sliced avocado
- Turkey burger with cheddar cheese, avocado, salsa & spicy tortilla strips (I either omitted the bun or substituted it for wheat toast), vegetable on the side
Try to find options that include a protein, vegetable, and a small portion of a carb
Sometimes we simply have no control over the restaurant, so now what? If you find that your options are limited, try swapping out some food items. For example, you can ask for grilled chicken in place of fried chicken. Or, if you’re ordering pizza, try to stick to protein and/or vegetable toppings: for example, grilled chicken with spinach & garlic. No, pizza isn’t on the “healthy eating” list, but you can choose to eat the healthier toppings.
Fill Up on the Greens
I know it’s hard to resist, but try not filling up on the bread they leave at your table. Eating your vegetables or salad first will help fill you so you’ll eat less of the “bad” foods.
Hydrate! Hydrate! Hydrate!
Another way to fill up before you eat is drinking water! Try to drink one full glass of water before eating your meal.
Overeating is common when eating at a restaurant. This is because they give you larger portion sizes than necessary. Eat your meal slowly, and listen to your body; it will tell you when it’s full! Once you reach this point, stop eating and take home the leftovers.
Keep these tips in mind as 4th of July comes up. When you’re at a picnic, choose wisely and your body will thank you! Happy eating!