Dining Out- 7 Tips for Maintaining Good Health

Dining Out- 7 Tips for Maintaining Good Health

For the first time ever, Americans are spending more money dining out than on their grocery bills, but are they making the proper choices when doing so?  15-20 years ago, dining out while trying to maintain a healthy eating schedule could have been quite challenging.  As a matter of fact, at the turn of the millennium, you needed to visit a large franchise restaurant in order to get a plain baked potato or a plain grilled chicken breast.

Fortunately for all of us, today, restauranteurs have gotten the memo and are usually able (and willing) to accommodate special dietary needs and requirements.  That being said, we still need to know what to order and how much of it.

A one pound baked potato, even plain, is carb overloading.  A 14 ounce grilled ribeye steak from The Outback Steakhouse contains a whopping 441 calories from the fat alone!  Two scrambled eggs from IHOP Restaurant boast 17 grams of fat, this means that 150 of the 220 total calories come from fat!  Less than 70 calories are from beneficial, muscle building protein, not an ideal protein to carb to fat ratio for sure!

With those startling ratios, how many meals can someone eat without elevating their cholesterol levels, increasing their body fat and diminish their overall health?  The answer is, not many!  There are ways to overcome the challenges of dining out.  It can be done with a bit of preparation and thought.

Elite Lifestyle Cuisine makes it simple to have a healthy, well-balanced meal in your refrigerator or cooler bag and offers top of the line protein shakes that can be used as meal replacements, but when you are sitting in a restaurant  and ready to order, stop and consider these tips!  Screen shot them and keep them on your phone as a reminder!

  1. Keep breakfast clean!  Its not cliché’, it’s the most important meal of the day.  Find a  place that offers high-powered protein shake and add 1/2 cup of fresh fruit in place of an omellete with toast or pancakes, if a shake is not available, consider plain yogurt with fresh fruit.
  2. Think green!  When sitting down to a salad, look for the one on the menu with mostly greens: romaine lettuce, spinach, arugula, mesclun/spring mix and kale.  All of these are available in restaurants.  Ask that they hold the dressing and consider using olive oil and balsamic vinegar at the table.  A few dashes of salt and some black pepper will allow you to enjoy nature’s best ingredients while keeping fat and calories to a minimum.
  3. Mashed is better than fried and baked is better than mashed!  Potatoes are a big deal at dinner, consider your options!
  4. Grilled or broiled is better than battered or fried.  Make sure to ask your server how items are prepared and choose wisely.
  5. Steamed rice is better than rice pilaf or risotto.
  6. Flounder, cod, sole, tuna and mahi-mahi are leaner and wild-caught.  The very popular salmon option is usually farm raised and significantly fattier.
  7. Vegetables are better sides than starchy carbs, make certain to ask for them steamed as butter will spike up the calories!

Consider these tips!  With the current obesity rate approaching 40% is it strictly coincidence that this has happened while Americans are spending more on dining out than ever before?

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