You can eat at a restaurant without blowing your clean eating
You sure as hell don’t keep the foods that tempt you in your home. But eating in a restaurant is a different story. Temptation is abso-freakin-lutely everywhere!
This is one of the biggest things that throws off my coaching clients. But take a deep breath before you start to panic about that big dinner out. You got this. Be social, enjoy yourself, and still eat clean. Just follow these following tips to eat at restaurants without undoing your clean eating.
Follow these tips for eating clean at a restaurant.
***And make sure to scroll all the way to the end. Because you’re going to get a FREE guide to ordering healthy at almost any restaurant! Chinese food? Italian food? Mexican food? No problem! You’ll learn all the tricks to ordering healthy at all different types of restaurants! Again, you’ll be able to download this at the end of the post.***
Look at the menu ahead of time and make a plan
If you know where you’ll be eating ahead of time, you’ve got a great head start. Look at the menu and come up with a meal plan. This is better than making decisions on impulse (especially if you feel a little bolder after a drink or two.) Make your food decision in advance and increase the chance that you’ll make good choices.
Schedule a snack before you go out
I know this probably sounds counter-intuitive. Why should you eat now, if you’re gonna have a big meal later? Because if you enter the restaurant with your stomach growling, the macaroni with extra cheese will be screaming your name. Just make it a healthy snack like vegetables with hummus, a handful of almonds, a cup of unsweetened yogurt or a few ounces of leftover chicken or turkey.
Handle the bread basket like a pro
The warm, soft bread will call your name while waiting to eat. So don’t tempt yourself if you don’t have to. Keep it off the table if others agree. Otherwise, give it back to the waiter once everyone else has gotten what they want. Or move it to the other side of the table. If you simply can’t resist, take a half a piece and nibble at it while everyone else eats theirs.
Look for the following words on the menu
There are certain words you’re looking for while trying to eat healthy in a restaurant. These are steamed, grilled and baked. These will be your best bet. And dishes served as entrees are better than those served over pasta or on bread. If you can’t find anything on the menu that matches this description, then ask for a modification. Which brings us to the next tip…
Feel free to ask for modifications
Don’t be scared to speak up because a restaurant will likely accommodate your requests! Ask for baked options instead of fried. Remove the fattening sauce and ask for your meal to be seasoned with olive oil and spices instead. Request steamed veggies instead of fries. Ask for the restaurant to serve a turkey burger on a bed of lettuce instead of the bun. Take what you see on the menu and transform it into something healthy.
Ditch the conventional salad dressing
A salad is often a healthier option in a restaurant. But your downfall might be the salad dressing. And you’re not safe with a low-fat “diet” salad dressing. These contain tremendously high amounts of sugar So do this instead. Combine olive oil and balsamic vinegar with just a touch of dijon mustard on the side makes a great, healthy salad dressing. Mix the olive oil and vinegar and then add in the mustard. Add a touch of table salt if desired. And voila! A much better salad dressing.
Ask for a to-go container at the time that your meal is served
You get so much good food at restaurant. However, you don’t want to overeat Leave a small amount of the tempting food on your plate and put the rest in the to-go container immediately. Get it off your plate and reserve it for take-out. You’ll now be much less likely to give in to the temptation to overeat.
A restaurant doesn’t have to be a challenge when making healthy diet changes.
You just need a game-plan for approaching the situation. It is possible to eat healthy in almost any restaurant. OK, maybe not the average burger joint or other fast food variety. But most other restaurants will be able to accommodate something that is healthy and diet friendly.
Your FREE Guide! Tricks to eating healthy at almost any restaurant!
So what about Italian food? Or Chinese food. Don’t forget about Mexican! Or how about eating healthy at a French restaurant. C’est impossible! But it is possible to eat healthy at all these restaurants and more! Download my FREE guide to choosing the healthiest menu options at all your favorite types of American and ethnic restaurants!
Just remember these tips. And next time you go out for a night with the girls, you won’t panic all week about finding something diet appropriate. It will be easy. And the lack of stress will free you up to enjoy the evening and focus on more important things!