10 Things to Keep in Mind When Eating at Restaurants if You’re Health Conscious

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I try hard to eat healthy and stay physically fit.  But finding something to eat that is healthy when you’re eating at a restaurant can be a challenge.   Here are 10 things to keep in mind when eating at restaurants.  

Now if you don’t eat out frequently, you probably don’t need to worry about many of these things and you can choose what you’d like and just enjoy.  But if you’re like me, and eating out is something you do frequently, you might find these tips helpful.

  1. Download MyFitnessPal so you can get rough estimates of the statistics on whatever you’re ordering.  This app is very helpful for deternining calories for particular foods; it also tracks calories and your excercise 
  2. Choose wisely.  Restaurants aren’t really concerned with your health or physique.  That means it’s up to you to choose wisely, and to know what you are putting in your mouth.
  3. Don’t me afraid to ask for modifications.  Ask for light oil or no oil/butter/sauce/dressing on the side…
  4. Order first.  “Influenced Eating” is a massive hindrance.  We often order based on what others are ordering. 
  5. Drink water.  Avoid high sugar, high calorie drinks that are prevalent at restaurants. Drinking plenty of water before and during your meal to help you feel full.
  6. Be mindful of portion size.  You don’t have to eat every bite they give you.  Eat the good stuff.  They want you full and jolly so you’ll come back, they don’t care about helping you be healthy and ripped.  You can also ask them to bring you a to-go box with your meal and box up half of it before you event begin eating. 
  7. Look at the menu online before you go.  Studies say on average that restaurant meals are upwards of 1400 per meal!   Add a couple of high calorie drinks to that and it’s very easy to comsume a full days worth of calories in one meal while dining at a restaurant.  
  8. Slow down.  You will feel fuller and eat less if you take your time with your food.  I personally “catch my stride” almost every meal, and eat way too fast which can really screw people up especially when they have a large amount on their plate because they’ll smash every bite available.
  9. Put your napkin over your plate/food when you’re full or ask the waiter/waitress to grab it so you don’t just keep grazing out of boredom or simply because you can.   This might some weird, but this is a trick that I do all the time.  Eat till you’re full, then let the satisfaction set in.
  10. Adjust your daily calorie intake in preparation .If you do have an 800-1500 calorie meal which is very easy to do, just make sure to adjust your other meals accordingly that day so that you stay within your desired calorie intake and meet your nutritional goals.

Eating at restuarants can be very challenging, especially if you are not conscientious about your choices.  It does take some strategy/substitutions/effort, but it is worth it  if you really are serious about your health goals.

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