10 Tips for a Healthy Meal Out

Eating in all the time can get a little boring for us sometimes, I know. But we fear we may stray away from our healthy eating once we go out at a restaurant. But just because you eat out doesn’t mean you have to go off track. Here are a few tips to keep you on your health plan, while having a nice evening out for dinner.

1. Do Your Research

Before going out, look up the restaurant and check out their menu ahead of time. If the restaurant mainly sells unhealthy foods, then that might not be the best place for you to eat. Once you find your restaurant, take a look at what you could possibly order before you even get there. You’ll want to scan the menu for the healthy options to help prevent you from temptation. Once you’ve done your homework, you will already know what you are eating before going, taking some of the pressure off.

2. Turn Down the Soda and Alcohol

I know having a delicious drink with our meal seems great. But you don’t want to drink your calories away. Cocktails and sodas are packed with sugar and calories and are not suitable for your health. Steer clear of these drinks and order a water with your meal. Drinking water throughout your meal will also prevent you from overeating as drinking in between bites will help you gauge your level of hunger.

3. Try the Grilled or Broiled Options

Scan the menu for these terms because they are more likely than not the healthier options. How your food is prepared is a key component in determining if your entrée is healthy or not. Select these options over something that is fried or breaded to ensure you are eating a healthier dish.

4. Skip the Bread and Dessert

One of the best parts of dinner is the break before your meal and the dessert afterward. But the bread and dessert also are packed with the most calories. So, avoid the temptation and ask for a healthier alternative if you are hungry before dinner. Skip out those extra calories and just save room in your stomach for your main course.

5. Order Seafood

Seafood is always a healthier option than other meats when eating out. However, just make sure it is not fried or breaded, and it is broiled or baked. Grilled salmon, for example, is always a tasty and straightforward option to go for when eating out. But also, ensure that your fish wasn’t soaked in butter or sauce and just ask the server how the food is prepared.

6. Box It Up

When eating out, have in your mind that you will take some of your food to-go. Just because they gave you a lot of food, does not mean you have to eat it all. Early on, ask your server for a to-go box and stop eating before you get full to overeating.

7. Don’t Go Super Hungry

Never go out to eat super hungry, or everything will look tasty, and you risk overeating. Eat a light snack before you go, to hold you over before dinner. You will make healthier choices if you aren’t starving by dinner time.

8. Start With a Soup or Salad

If you start your dinner with a soup or salad, you will be less inclined to overeat when your entrée comes. You’re also filling your body with some nutrients beforehand so you will get full quicker. Just be sure to eat a vegetable-based soup and go easy with the dressing with your salad.

9. Double Up on Vegetables

Just because one of your entrees comes with a side, does not mean you have to stick to it. Most restaurants will let you substitute a side maybe with a slight upcharge. Order double vegetables as your side to make sure you are giving yourself the healthiest options at dinner.

10. Get Your Sauces on the Side

Sauces are often the culprits of those hidden calories. To make sure you can portion out the sauces yourself, get them on the side. Sometimes, the sauces can be in your entrée without you knowing. Always ask your server exactly what comes in your meal, so you are not caught off guard when it comes. Try to avoid extra calories any way you can.

With these tips, you can always be prepared when you eat out at a restaurant. No need to fear going out to eat with friends anymore. You can avoid feeling guilty after eating out if you follow this simple guide.