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Eating out tips!

Updated: Jun 26, 2023

Being prepared can be the difference between going off track and sticking to your targets. Here are my top tips for planning in advance when eating out of home.

  1. Look ahead at menu options – find the menu for where you're going to online and see what choices they have. Its easier now that most menus have the calories on!

  2. Decide in advance which healthier option you will be ordering to avoid having to make a choice on the spot. Having a pre-determined decision is a great strategy as it removes the pressure of a situation where it's easy to be swayed in the moment by your emotions, other people or hunger!

  3. Plan in some extra activity – while it's true that you 'can't outrun a bad diet', being more active on the day/days before your eating occasions can certainly help to burn a few extra calories and could make you feel less inclined to overindulge. So plan in an extra walk or exercise class in the lead up to your eating out occasion to help offset the calories a little.

Choosing healthy restaurant options

When you eat out you need a strategy that will enable you to enjoy the experience without losing sight of your healthy eating habits.

Ordering Starters

  • When deciding on a starter, consider whether you would eat one at home. It might be better to skip the starter, especially if you plan to have a big main dish.

  • Consider ordering a starter and salad, or two starters, as you main meal, or share a starter.

  • Choose low-fat, high-fibre soups such as vegetable or lentil soup. Avoid smooth, creamy soups

  • Deep-fried starters are high in fat and calories, so they are best to avoid.

  • If you have bread, choose brown and have it plain.

  • If ordering a salad, ask for the dressing to be served separately. This way you can control the quantity.

  • Choose a salad without grated cheese, fried croutons, or a special dressing such as Caesar dressing.

The best main dishes

  • Use eating out, as an opportunity to choose main dishes you might not cook yourself.

  • Grilled, baked, or roast poultry breast, fish, and shellfish are the best choices, since they are low in fat.

  • Opt for tomato-based pasta sauces rather than cheese or meat based.

  • Order the smallest portion of meat, or share. If you are hungry, order extra vegetables and salad.

  • Select horseradish, salsa, lemon or lime juice, or mustard instead of rich, high-fat condiments such as soured cream or mayonnaise.

Enjoying Desserts

For a healthy, refreshing dessert, have a fruit salad or fresh berries, which are packed with vitamins.

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