Healthy eating habits shouldn’t happen just when eating at home. You should always try to eat healthily at each meal no matter where you are. You can confidently learn simple tricks to cut down on calories and food intake by making healthy choices before going out.
Julie Waltz, the author of Food Habit Management, suggests several different techniques to make a strategy for eating in an environment that is somewhat out of your control.
Avoid starving yourself all day in anticipation of the meal.
Eat something small before leaving to decrease your temptation when ordering. If you are not starving, you can be more rational in your choices.
Limit the use of alcoholic beverages before a meal. Alcohol is an appetite stimulant and a control depressant. Most people report considerably more control when little or no alcohol is consumed before a meal.
Order some fresh vegetables or a salad to have something to eat instead of bread or rolls. Try not to eat empty calories while waiting for your meal.
Order salad dressing and sauces on the side. This will allow you to control the calories added to the meal.
Share high-calorie meals with someone else. Many restaurants have built their reputations on serving large portions. Sharing an entrée allows each person to have a sufficient amount without overeating.
Ask for a “doggie bag” with the meal.
A good practice is to place half the amount in the container and save for another meal. This strategy saves both calories and money.
Wait 20 minutes or so before ordering anything additional. It takes at least that long for the brain to register the feeling of satisfaction and fullness.
If something sweet is necessary to end the meal, offer to share a dessert with another person, or eat a piece of mint chocolate to have with coffee.
Eating out with friends is fun, and that aspect shouldn’t have to change just because you are watching your weight. You just have to have a plan of action to make wise choices for yourself.