Dining out is a great way to catch up with families and explore new cuisine – not to mention it gives us a night off from slaving over the stove. But, there is also the downside to dining out, the extra calories packed into most entrees. These tips are sure to save you calories without missing out on all the benefits of eating out.
Taking a peak at the menu can sway your decision to eat at one restaurant versus another based on what they offer. While the BBQ steakhouse may sound tempting, if you’re trying to cut down on calories it’s probably not the best choice. Remember to think about what you want to eat before you start you’re research too – sometimes a greasy ½ pound hamburger will be the only thing to keep you from gorging on midnight snacks later on.
Learn The Lingo
This is key when deciding between menu items. Avoid words like creamy, crispy, and fried (deep-, stir-, pan-, ANY kind of fried really). Even words like homemade can mean that it’s packing on a lot of butter, sugar, and oil. Stick with menu items that are described as grilled, broiled, poached, roasted, or baked. These items generally are more than half the calories of others.
Skip The Bread
Eating bread before a meal is like going to a concert but only staying for the first act. Do not eat the bread! If you must have a piece of bread (sometimes it’s just too hard to resist), have one. Save your calories and taste buds for something you actually want (ahem, that pricey grilled halibut you just ordered).
Find your inner Spaniard and opt for tapas-inspired items. Choose a bunch of appetizers to share or split an entrée. Not only does this save you calories, but you are able to sample a variety of what the restaurant has to offer.
It’s been proven that we eat more when we’re not paying attention. Make sure you are aware of what you’re eating but also how much. Don’t become a zombie – savor every last bite!