Dining out can be a challenge when you’re on a weight loss journey, but it’s not impossible. With the right mindset and approach, you can enjoy a meal out without compromising your progress. Here are some tips to help you dine out while on a weight loss journey.
1. Plan ahead
Before you go out, do your research. Look up the menu online and plan what you’re going to order ahead of time. This will help you avoid impulse decisions and high-calorie options. You can also check the restaurant’s nutrition information to help guide your choices.
2. Choose the right restaurant
Not all restaurants are created equal when it comes to healthy options. Look for restaurants that offer healthy choices, like salads, grilled fish, and steamed vegetables. Avoid restaurants that specialize in fast food or fried options. You can also check out the restaurant’s social media pages to see if they post any healthy options or suggest meals that fit your weight loss goals.
3. Don’t skip meals
Many people make the mistake of starving themselves all day to “save calories” for their dinner out. This can lead to overeating once you get to the restaurant and feeling guilty after the meal. Instead, eat a healthy snack or light meal before you go out. This will help you control your appetite and make healthier choices when you arrive.
4. Watch portion sizes
Portion sizes at restaurants are often larger than what you would normally eat at home, a healthy alternative here is to split the meal with a friend or get a to-go container and take some home for later. Another option could be to order an appetizer for your main course or asking for half-sized portions.
5. Avoid liquid calories
Alcohol, sugary cocktails, and soft drinks can add up quickly in calories. Instead, opt for water with lemon, iced tea, or sparkling water. If you must drink alcohol, stick to one drink or opt for low-calorie options like wine or a light beer.
6. Be mindful of sides and extras
Many meals come with tempting sides like fries, pasta or bread, try substituting for healthier options like grilled vegetables, mashed sweet potatoes, or a side salad. Another option is to ask for sauces and dressings on the side.
7. Listen to your body
Being tuned in to when you are full is essential when dining out. Remember to slow down while eating and take breaks in between bites, giving time for your body to recognize that it is full. One other pro tip is eating slowly with a smaller spoon or fork. You can then respond by asking to take home leftovers for the next day or leaving what you can’t finish on the table
In conclusion, following these tips will help you maintain a healthy diet while dining out. Remember, weight loss is about making healthy choices and being mindful of your body’s signals. By planning ahead, choosing the right restaurant, staying mindful of your portions and calories, and listening to your body you are bound to have success on your weight loss quests.