Eating Out The Healthy Way

Posted by Alexander on December 17th, 2014 (Uncategorized)

While people are trying to become more health conscious when eating out, many restaurant

meals are higher in calories than home-cooked versions. These tips can help you make quick,

healthy decisions when eating out, which will allow you to enjoy your food without excess


Choosing the restaurant

Choose restaurants that offer healthy options, such as grilled and broiled meats, and healthy

side items, such as fruits and vegetables

Avoid buffets, if possible, where people tend to overeat and you cannot take home food for

future meals

Look for lunch or early bird specials, so you can eat at establishments with healthier options

for less

Choosing menu items

Scan the menu for a “lighter,” “low-calorie,” or “healthy option” section, but do not let the

name fool you; read the menu descriptions:

o Look for good words such as baked, roasted, grilled, broiled, steamed, cooked in its own

juices, marinara/tomato sauce, choice/select cuts of meat, and broth- or tomato-based


o Order items less frequently that use words such as fried, sautéed, batter dipped, breaded,

au gratin, scampi, Alfredo, cooked with butter or cream, gravy, prime cuts of meat, and

cream-based soups

Consider ordering a salad if you are searching for a healthy alternative, which is usually

better than most entrees:

o Ask for dressing on the side

o Request reduced amounts of high-calorie options, such as cheese

Look at the entrée menu, which sometimes contains the only healthy options at a restaurant.

See if you can mix and match an appetizer with a side salad, soup, or another healthy option

Ask someone to split a higher-calorie entrée or dessert with you, if you want to order one, so

you can enjoy the food while having half the calories


Ask the waiter how items are prepared or served

o Are the vegetables buttered? If so, can I get them steamed with no butter?

Request toast and baked potatoes dry, or with spreads and toppings on the side

Substitute vinegar, lemon, salsa, plain yogurt, or low-calorie salad dressings for highercalorie

dressings and toppings

Tell your waiter to “hold the mayo” and put sauces, salad dressings, and other high-fat extras

on the side, and use them sparingly

Choose a side green salad, steamed vegetable, baked potato, or fruit cup in place of the

coleslaw, potato salad, or chips which normally come with a meal

Order smaller portions, such as half the rice or a small order of French fries, instead of the

standard medium portion that accompanies most value meals

Opt for the more basically prepared dishes, such as baked or broiled chicken, instead of

ordering something that you are not sure about the ingredients, such as a casserole, stew, or

other mixed dish


Avoid overeating by drinking a tall glass of water before you start eating, and drink several

glasses during your meal

Request a to-go container immediately when your food arrives if you receive a large portion,

and put half away before you start eating—two meals for the price of one

Share a large meal or dessert with someone

Do not have high-calorie dressings, gravies, or creamy sauces served directly on top of your


o Have them served on the side instead

Ask the waiter to remove your plate as soon as you feel full to prevent picking at it

Request that your waiter remove the bread/chip basket or place it out of your reach, if you

find yourself snacking too much

Eat slowly, put your fork down between bites, and chew well




Written by Alexander

Alexander is an Accredited Practicing Dietitian having completed a Bachelor of Nutrition and Dietetics, and a member of the Dietitian Association Australia (APD)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Hamilton Diet Advice Videos

The Bottom Line Of Good Nutrition
The Benefits Of Exercise
Eat Well, Live Well