Know what you're ordering
If you’re unsure as to what something is, or what it contains, ask! If the waiter/waitress doesn’t know, then the chef will. Going out on a limb and ordering something unknown can be detrimental to your healthy eating goals. Being served with a high calorie meal when you're watching your waist line can be rather disappointing and dampen your day.
Don’t be afraid to speak up about how you’d like a dish prepared. For instance ask for no mayonnaise, salad instead of chips or dressing on the side. Simple requests like these can easily keep calorie intake under control.
Opt for smaller portions when possible. For example, have a starter as a main course. More often than not you will still be satisfied with a smaller portion. Sharing a course or two is also a good way to portion control. Don't deprive yourself of the foods you love, if you want a pasta dish then go for it. But instead of having the pasta dish all to yourself, order a salad to accompany it and share both dishes with your dinner date.
Take your time
Relax and enjoy your time out socialising. Be careful not to shovel your food down quickly without savouring the taste. Take your time, sip water and put your fork down in between bites. Think about how the food tastes, the flavours and herbs you can identify. Really enjoy your meal and make the most out of it. Being mindful and taking your time with your meal satisfies the stomach more than you expect!
If you know you’re eating out later and it could be a lavish affair, make wise choices earlier in the day. This helps to keep calories, fat, sugar and salt intakes under control. Going out for burgers and chips for dinner? Plan ahead and choose sensible options for lunch such as a salad or vegetable soup.
Follow these handy hints and you can enjoy a night out without fretting about the health and waist line consequences.
Written by Dr. Noel Duncan