Five Things To Know If You Want To Dine Out Healthily
We all like dining out in restaurants; whether it is as a way of going out socialising, a chance to celebrate with family and friends or just for the enjoyment of eating good food. Unfortunately, dining out can be the scourge of even the most steadfast diet – this is because it can often seem difficult to make the right choice when you go out to a restaurant, which can lead to you eating a very large meal that is full of far more calories, fat and cholesterol that is good for you. But the fact that we know that eating out is not good for us means it’s possible to take steps to minimise the damage caused. Here are our top five tips to help you stay healthy when you go out for dinner.
One – Read the menu very well
Sometimes we have a habit of skipping through the majority of the menu in a restaurant and just choosing something quickly that we know we like. The problem is that the comfort food choices that we make are often not the healthiest for us. So to make up for this it is a much better idea to go through the menu and think about the levels of calories and fat likely to be in the different dishes. There will usually be healthy options available if you look hard enough and these can be the difference between staying on top of your diet and giving up.
Two – Ask for help if you need it
The waiter at the restaurant should have an excellent knowledge of the menu, so if you are reading it and having trouble picking the right thing to keep your levels of fat and cholesterol low, it pays to ask the waiter a few questions – they will be more than happy to help. Remember that in many restaurants the chef will be happy to change up the dish if you have certain requests such as making it with less unhealthy products. So make sure if you ask before you eat!
Three – Terms to look out for
Not all food is created equal and there are certain dining choices that you can make that are very bad for you, but others than are not remotely as unhealthy. Whilst it obviously isn’t always going to be possible to know all of the ingredients that go into something, but nevertheless there are certain words that are used within the menu that we can use to establish whether it is likely to be good for us. Bad words include au gratin, deep fried, pan fried, crispy and buttery – and these should be avoided, while you should look instead for words like boiled, grilled, baked or steamed.
Four – Look for the right oils
There are certain cooking oils that should be avoided, while others that are far more beneficial to us. Olive oil is clearly one of the best oils that can be used in the preparation of your food. Other good choices include corn, sunflower and canola oil. These should be asked for in preference of other oils that are not as unhealthy for you.
Five – The bread basket
The bread basket can be a real problem as it may often come around despite the very healthy choices you’ve made from the menu. But even here there are ways to minimise the negative effects of what you’re eating. Instead of choosing white bread, go for a multi-grain, brown or oat bread, which will generally be much healthier for you. Also remember to choose margarine instead of butter.