Restaurants like the Old Country Buffet are full of delicious treats, but like many others there are now healthy and low calorie options. Are you one of those who want to enjoy fine dining but watching your weight? Follow these simple tips.
Start with Salad
Next time you’re at Bonefish Grill, start your meal by ordering a salad. They’re tasty, nutritious and curbs your appetite. Eat a healthy amount of vegetable salad before the main course so you’ll consume less calories. If you do go for vegetable salad, forget the cream and opt for vinegar or oil dressing. Skip the croutons and cheese as well.
Read the Names Carefully
Don’t order food on the menu that have words like cream, butter, stuffed and so on. Food items with words like sauteed, cheese filled, parmesan etc are sure signs they’re high in calories.
Take it Easy on Dessert
Those chocolates and pies are so tempting, but they’re best avoided if you’re weight conscious. If you can’t resist then order a small portion or share it with the others on the table. Better yet, just skip it and grab a yogurt on your way home.
Pop a Mint After Eating
You’ve finished the course but tempted to go another round. You can get over this by popping a mint. The cool taste of mint not only eliminates the smell of the food you just ate, but it also makes you not want to eat anymore as the flavor is all over your mouth.
Plan an Activity after Eating
Whether it’s a walk, shopping etc this will force you to eat less when at a restaurant. You don’t want to feel sluggish when it’s time for a walk so you’ll end up eating less. It might be difficult at the beginning but it can become a habit.
Eat before Dining Out
A simple solution to avoid overeating at a restaurant is to eat a meal or a snack about 2 hours before. By doing this you’ll be able to resist the urge to order more at the restaurant. Of course you should eat healthy snacks or meals.
Drink Water Throughout
Alternate drinking of water with your bites. This slows down your eating and helps curb your appetite. Drinking water during meals also lets you take stock of what you’re doing and if you’re already full. Often we’re already full and just don’t realize it.
Dress for the Meal
This may sound odd, but scientists have determined that formal dressing makes people more conscious of the food they eat. Of course in a formal dinner you dine with more restraint and that’s the effect we’re looking for here.
Put the Fork Down After Each Bite
The food is so good we just swallow bite after bite. Before you know it we’ve gotten through several plates. One way to avoid this is to simply put the fork after each bite. Pick the fork up after 30 seconds or so. This gives you time to talk to your companion and determine if you’re still hungry.
Turn Down the Bread Basket
The bread basket is a no-no as well as the salsa and tortilla combo. They’re packed with too much calories and besides, you can always order a plateful of vegetables instead. As for the dips, just tell the waiter you won’t be having them.
Don’t Eat the Skin
We’re referring to chicken, turkey, and duck skin. They’ve got more calories than the meat so remove them before eating. Don’t worry about lack of taste as there are seasonings available that you can sprinkle on the meats.
Start with the Low Calorie Foods
It’s a good idea to learn the calorie content of the foods on the menu so you can start with those that have the lowest calories. This allows your body to get filled up so by the time you get to the high calorie foods, you’re no longer that hungry.
Ask for Spices
Spicy herbs, sauces and seasonings add to the flavor, but they are also low in calories. Among the best options are lemon, chili powder, garlic salt and paprika.
Fruits are delicious and make for the perfect side or dessert. They don’t pack a lot of calories so that’s an added bonus. Mixed fruits are readily available and you can also ask for whole fruits as well.
Any fruit will do fine as dessert, but blueberries, strawberries, raspberries offer the best combination of taste and antioxidants. They also don’t have a lot of sugar.
One more thing we can add. Before heading out to the restaurant, give yourself a pep talk to eat healthy. Remind yourself this and let it serve as a challenge. Eating healthy doesn’t mean starving yourself, as it’s just about making the right choice.