Health

Sticking to a healthy eating plan while dining out

It’s not easy to stick to a healthy eating plan while also dining out.

And let’s face it, us mamas don’t often have that many opportunities to eat out with our friends or partner.

If you’re paying for a nice meal, you want to enjoy it and not just order a boring side salad!

Whether you are eating at the local pub with the family, or splurging with friends for a special birthday, we have put together a few tips and tricks to help you stay on track, as well as enjoying your event without feeling guilty!

7 top tips for sticking to your weight loss plan when dining out

1. Avoid going back for seconds (and thirds)

It’s easy to overeat if you are sharing food with friends. A handy tip is, when you serve yourself, just do it once rather than going back for seconds (or thirds).

Suggest ordering a few side dishes of vegetables and/or salad, preferably with the sauce served on the side.

If you are still hungry and need to go back for seconds, dig in to the extra veggies the table ordered and avoid the dishes laden with oil, cream or cheese.

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2. Order ahead

If you know where you’re going for dinner, log onto the website and check out the menu in advance and decide what you are having beforehand.

We all know that when we are really hungry, the healthiest or lowest calorie option is not the most appealing and we are more likely to choose something that satisfies our immediate craving! Choosing
earlier in the day, preferably on a full stomach, will help you make a better choice.

3. Sweet tooth

Our best intentions to say no to dessert is often scuppered when the waitress comes over with the dessert menu and tempts you with an array of delicious sounding treats.

In an ideal world we’d just say ‘no’, but this isn’t always easy. If there is a group of you, order a couple of desserts for the whole table. This way you get a few spoonful’s without overdoing it.

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4. Avoid alcohol

For many, a night out is not a night out if you can’t have a drink or two, and you don’t need to completely avoid a drink on a night out when you are on a weight loss plan.

Try to deter yourself from the sugary cocktails as well as drinks that are mixed with soft drinks or sodas.

Opting for vodka or gin with soda, sweetened with fresh lime, a martini or asking the waitress if they offer lower calorie options like low sugar tonic can save you hundreds of calories over the course of the evening.

5. Swap it out

Restaurants are used to customising meals and are often more than willing to swap out the creamy sauces for tomato based ones or steamed veggies or salad instead of hot chips.

Asking for sauces and dressings to be served on the sides is another good healthy dining hack.

6. Ask to take the food you haven’t eaten home

A good rule of thumb to avoid over eating is to eat 75% of what is on your plate.

But, let’s face it, when you are paying over the odds for your meal, the last thing you want to do is leave half of it on the plate to be thrown in the bin.

Most restaurants are quite happy to bag up the leftovers so you can enjoy it for lunch the next day. Just make sure if they seal the container properly if you are popping it in your handbag!

7. Not one but two entrees?

It can be a bit isolating if your table is ordering entrees and main courses but you were planning to just order one meal.

To avoid you salivating over everyone else’s entree whilst your plate remains empty, perhaps order a side salad (skip the dressing) as an entree or how about having the entree and ordering a second entree for
your main course instead of a main meal?

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