“R” is for Restaurants

RI don’t know you peeps but in my experience there is just no way to lose weight if I constantly eat out. There is just no way. And I love eating out and therefore I have had to learn to make smart decisions when I eat out and plan ahead in order to not terribly disturb my weight loss journey.

So… let’s talk about restaurants. I love them 😆 and what’s not to love: yummy food, no prep, no cooking, no clean-up. It’s awesome. The main problem with eating out is that we have very little control on how it is prepared and therefore a simple meal of 600 calories at home may easily turn into a 2000-calorie monstrosity at your favorite food joint. What’s a girl (or guy) on a diet to do?

Toni’s Restaurant Tips

TIP #1 Check the menu before you go – Most restaurants share their meals’ nutritional value on their website. Check it before you head out so you have a better idea what are your best choices. There are also apps that can help you make smarter choices at the dinner table. I usually check my copy of Eat This, Not That! or the website. In any case, the trick is to be prepared before you set foot in the restaurant.

TIP #2 Plan out your week – I usually know how many times I’ll be eating out during the week so if it’s only one day I may allow myself to splurge and have a “cheat-meal” with no regrets but if I know that I will be eating out three or more days the next week then I make sure that I choose healthier options with plenty of greens and sauces and/or dressings on the side.

TIP #3 Check your alcohol and/or skip dessert – The biggest change I made to my lifestyle was limiting my alcohol consumption. I barely have any anymore unless I’m out with friends and preferably if I know I will be dancing and therefore burning it off. I also rarely have dessert and if I do I try to share it.

Do you plan your eating out adventures? Got any tips?

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6 comments

  1. Portion control is key. Plan ahead. Ask for things on the side – dressings and sauces – and use them sparingly. And choose cuisines that are more reliant on vegetables than white starch.
    of course, home prep is often a better option but life is too precious to not enjoy the delicious foods you can only get in restaurants.

  2. All excellent suggestions. And since most restaurant “portions” are enough to make at least 2 meals out of, I am not ashamed to ask for a take-out box and have the 2nd half of most meals for lunch the next day. (My co-workers get jealous, they think I MAKE all these fabulous lunches :-))

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